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> Flow-Gate by Vent-Matic, Contributed by gpflepsen
cj in j
post Oct 17 2005, 08:06 PM
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Flow-Gate 101
Contributed by gpflepsen

Several months ago, I did a detailed comparison of Vent-Matic and Perlick forward sealing faucets, which can be found in this FAQ. At that time I also received a Ventmatic Flo-Gate, and after using it for a month or so, I thought I'd make a post to try to explain what it is and what it does.

This is a picture of the Flogate on one of my beer lines. It is a series of disks stacked inside a 1/4" hose. The disk divide, turn then recombine the beer flow many times.

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How does this work?
It works by turning and diverting the beer stream many times in a short distance. Flow restriction in a straight pipeline can be characterized as so many psi/ft. Flow restriction through a bend or elbow can be expressed as an equivalent length of straight pipe.

For instance, a 90 degree bend of pipe (or hose) can have an equivalent psi/ft restriction of a pipe length 20 times (or more) it's diameter. In simple terms, a 3/16" 90 degree bend equals about 4-5" of hose length. The Flo-gate mimics a longer length of line by turning and diverting the beer's path many times in a short length of tubing.

Here you can see the plastic disk, formed like a screw's threads. They split the stream, effectively turn it 4 times then recombine the streams. The disks work in alternating directions, first left hand, then right hand, etc.

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It's a nifty device which works well in replacing many feet of beer line. It is especially useful for serving high volume CO2 beers without the need for 25-30 feet of 3/16 hose. If you are a hefe-head, you owe yourself to give this a try.

It is available from Vent-Matic for about $25.
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