Monday, September 24, 2012

Oooh Shiney!

Ever notice when someone says something will be a "great opportunity" for you, it's always about something that's going to totally suck at first? It reminds me of Calvin's day referring to something that will "build character." Well, I've had a good opportunity fall in my lap at work. It really is one, but that doesn't make it any less stressful. That combined with my typical resistance to change has made this past week more than just a little stressful. So that made it particularly nice to have a quiet weekend. I didn't get as much done on R2-DBREW as I planned, but made good progress none-the-less.

Two out of three kegs are fully polished. Even though I was just standing in the garage with a fan on me, it was exhausting. I spent about 4 hours on Saturday doing two of the kegs, and an hour today starting on the third.

Polishing the keg is easy. I found a great how-to on homebrewtalk that gained such popularity it earned it's own sticky in the DIY thread. Start to finish (without keg, and without angle grinder) it's about a $50 investment. The DIY thread has you go with Gator Grit, but anything similar would work just fine. You need a "medium" grit pad, a "fine" pad, a buffing pad, and number 2 and number 5 polish. To use these pads you need a backing accessory for your angle grinder. Start with the medium and get to polishing. It takes about 3 hours to complete a keg depending on how rough of shape it was to start in.

If there's a bunch of stickers on your keg, you're going to want to get some "Goof-Off" or similar product and remove all the goop. The goop will gum up your grinding pads pretty quick. That being said, getting the sticky off is a pain, and maybe you want to just buy some sacrificial sanding pads instead.

You start with the medium pad, then move to the fine pad, and then the buffing pad. You apply the number 2 polish first, by holding the end of the stick (like a big piece of chalk) and holding it against the wheel. Then polish away like you did before. Apply the polish compound regularly. I wouldn't mix polish compounds on your buffing pad either, your #5 finish probably wont look as nice.

After all the hard work you should be able to see yourself in the keg. Take a rag and soak with mineral spirits or acetone or similar and wipe all the residue off. Now you've got some kegs sportin bling so serious Flava Flave is jealous.

While you're here, visit the link on the side of the site and get yourself a subscriptions to Brew Your Own!

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