HOW TO: CO2 cartridge alternatives

Tips, tricks and how-to guides for your MiniBrew
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Guerrilla
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Instead of using the CO2 cartridges that can become quite expensivel you can also get a large C02 bottle that you can refiill. The initial bying of the bottle might be a bit of cash, but refillls are definitely cheaper then buying seperate C02 cartridges. You also require a CO2 Gas Bottle Regulator. You also need a hose and clamps.

You can use the CO2 to force carbonate your beer.

If you do not want to handle or buy a complete new CO2 Gas Bottle (searching someone that refills it often depends on where you bought it) you can use Soda Stream (or compatible) CO2 cylinders. These are much cheaper than cartridges, available in a lot of stores (also online of course), safe and easy to use. On top of that you can swap them in the store when empty.

WARNING: Keep in mind that SodaStream uses different connectors for EU / US (Tr21-4) and Down Under (G1/2)!

You can use the standard Mini CO2 Regulator, buy a matching adapter to the soda stream CO2 Cylinder (or from China) and to avoid any leakage of beer into the CO2 Cylinder you also should use the corresponding tubing with valve disconnect.

Alternatively, you can also buy a separate regulator with gauge for more precise feedback.
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Tuur
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If you want to use the MB regulator, here's the adapter for (EU) SodaStream: https://nl.aliexpress.com/item/4000188822651.html

Here's a regulator with gauge: https://nl.aliexpress.com/item/32993104706.html

And a check-valve disconnect: https://nl.aliexpress.com/item/4000512826460.html
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Tuur
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Tuur
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Last edited by Tuur on Sun Jan 31, 2021 10:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Tuur
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Tuur
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By the way: a number of people have experienced leaks under pressure. Even small leaks can empty your SodaStream bottle overnight.

When I don't force carbonate I simply put 30 PSI on the keg twice a day for two days or so (so ~4 times in total):
- connect CO2 source to keg, open valve
- listen for the CO2 flowing into the keg for ~10 seconds until it stops, close valve
- disconnect CO2 source again to be prevent possible leaking
- repeat a couple of times until carbonation is to your liking
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Guerrilla
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Tuur wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 3:08 pm
By the way: a number of people have experienced leaks under pressure. Even small leaks can empty your SodaStream bottle overnight.

When I don't force carbonate I simply put 30 PSI on the keg twice a day for two days or so (so ~4 times in total):
- connect CO2 source to keg, open valve
- listen for the CO2 flowing into the keg for ~10 seconds until it stops, close valve
- disconnect CO2 source again to be prevent possible leaking
- repeat a couple of times until carbonation is to your liking
Yes Ive been doing this with CO2 cartridges successfully last few brews. No need to keep the pressure attached.
Géraud
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https://www.aliexpress.com/i/32816028718.html

For connector to the MiniBrew regulator from a CO2 source bigger than the cartridge.
Or the regulate psi per keg if you have one main regulator (and use the ones provided by MB )


The connectors arrived but it doesnt work properly on the MiniBrew regulators. The MB regulators are to deep (1,5cm) and the thread of the connector is about 1 cm.

Although like the thought of the small relators connected to a big tank, this is not the solution. You can buy new small regulators, but they often go to 150psi, of 60 psi. But if you look closely to the MB regulator it has not a linear scale which makes it easier to set low psi's.
aapaul
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Tuur wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 3:08 pm
By the way: a number of people have experienced leaks under pressure. Even small leaks can empty your SodaStream bottle overnight.

When I don't force carbonate I simply put 30 PSI on the keg twice a day for two days or so (so ~4 times in total):
- connect CO2 source to keg, open valve
- listen for the CO2 flowing into the keg for ~10 seconds until it stops, close valve
- disconnect CO2 source again to be prevent possible leaking
- repeat a couple of times until carbonation is to your liking
Thank you for the information! I am trying this now. Just received the regulator today.
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