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Jockey Box needs work, looking for some help

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  • Jockey Box needs work, looking for some help

    Hi everyone, I recently built a jockey box using two 50' 3/8 ID SS coils. So in order of use, from the coupler to the shank is plastic beer line, probably 5/16. Then the beer travels through a 7/16 ID plastic tube that connects to the rear shanks to the 3/8 coils.

    When I pour the beer it foams slightly. Enough that you see foam coming out of the tap but if poured correctly, the beer will look foamy at first but quickly settle to about 75% beer 25% head. I think the problem may be that the beer line starts small from the couplers, then gets bigger, then decreases to the 3/8 ss. Should I try to make all the beer hoses 3/8 ID and then add a plastic tube that is smaller, like 3/16 to connect the ss coils to the faucet(this would act as a restrictor)?

    Because right now my psi is set no higher than 13, usually around 10psi. If I try to set it any higher it foams too much.

    Side story, a couple weeks ago I brought the box to a wedding. We had two kegs one of boston lager the other yuenling. It was my first time using it, other than practicing one time in the back yard. So anyway, I worked it out and had it owrking at 10psi. It was a little foamy but would settle quickly. So anyway this kid who worked at a brewery in Boston, kept going over and increasing the psi. I had noticed the psi had been increased once, so I turned it back down. Then I saw the kid doing it again! I had to go confront him and tell him to stop messing with it. The kid thought he was an expert because he works at a brewery. The thing that got me was he would turn the psi up to 15-20 and not even check to see how it poured after. He just acted like 15-20 is the psi and that was that, even though it was basically spraying everywhere after he changed it. I wanted to punch the kid in the face!

  • #2
    mdr411,
    I probably would have sided with the kid, this is what it says on MM site:
    "30-35 lbs of applied pressure is recommended. This amount of pressure is required to dispense 50-55

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    • #3
      Originally posted by KillianBoy View Post
      mdr411,
      I probably would have sided with the kid, this is what it says on MM site:
      "30-35 lbs of applied pressure is recommended. This amount of pressure is required to dispense 50-55
      That's exactly why I'm posting this. Because everything I read says that the pressure should be higher. But when I turn the pressure up, and mind you I've tested in on multiple kegs at this point, the beer comes out at such a high velocity that it sprays and pours a cup of entirely foam. That was my issue with the kid, because I heard commotion because people in suits and dresses were sprayed with foam and upon further investigation I figured out someone had increased the pressure. Can I be the only person who has to set my jockey box at 10ish psi for a good pour? Maybe it's because I don't have a restriction before the taps. Anyone?

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      • #4
        mdr411,
        Don't know what the heck is going on with this site, something cut off the second part of my post.
        Second part said that most guys will run same ID from keg to faucet, I asked also what your setup is like (keg iced down?, 1st jumper ID length, 2nd jumper ID length jumper after coils?), sorry the abrupt ending made my post seem harsh, when it wasn't.
        KB
        It was the cut and paste I did with the quote from the jockey box section, I always have problems with that.

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        • #5
          The line from the coupler to keg (line 1) is 5/16 ID and about 4 feet long. Then it passes through the shank and comes out of the shank into a 7/16 plastic line (line 2) that is about 1.5 feet long. After that it goes into the 3/8 50 foot coil (line 3) and that coil is connected to the tap. I have the kegs on ice and the coils in an ice water bath. The serving temp is nice and cold and like I said, I'm basically trying to dial this system in to get a good pour. If you were to pour it today with that set-up, you'd see white beer coming out of the tap then when it hits the cup, if it's a good pour with the glass tilted you'd get 75% beer and 25% would be the head, which is too much in my opinion. Now when people go up and don't pour well and they either don't open the tap completely or don't tilt the cup, they'll end up with almost a full cup of foam. It's that touchy.
          Last edited by mdr411; 08-26-2014, 08:21 AM.

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          • #6
            The way I set mine up is 3/8 line from the coupler to the back of the box to the coils, through the coils to the faucet shank 3/16 to the faucet. no vinyl line at all. I run my 100 ft coil set up at 35 lbs . on a 50 ft coil I would run around 30 lbs .
            Colin Harrison
            Dbi Beverage Chico

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            • #7
              Spdbump - How long is your 3/16 line? Also, are all your lines SS? You said you use no vinyl at all. Thanks

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              • #8
                On my coil box the section of 3/16 stainless steel is about a foot long, came from the manufacture that way. The only vinyl that I have is the 3\8 from the coupler to the back of the box.
                Colin Harrison
                Dbi Beverage Chico

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                • #9
                  OK here's the update. I made some changes to my jockey box in the hopes of getting a better pour. Essentially, the way I had it set up before was 3/8 SS line all the way to the faucet. The big change that I made was to put in a smaller 3/16 ID line between the 3/8 SS and the faucet. It worked great. The pours were close to perfect most of the time. Before the line change I was running the box using 10-13 psi and after the change I had to increase the psi to 20. My next step will be to add 15 ft of 3/16 line before the faucet because I think that will give the beer enough time in the smaller ID line to settle down a little more. The 5 ft works much better, but may not be enough to really dial it in.

                  So basically what I learned from this jockey box build is that 50 ft 3/8 ID line is too large a diameter to pour clean. The beer just flows too fast through the line. You need to add a restriction in order to slow the beer down. Thanks for all of your help guys, it's appreciated.
                  Last edited by mdr411; 09-02-2014, 05:23 AM.

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