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Colonial Brewing opened their first East Coast brewery in Port Melbourne in 2015. Head brewer Ashley Hazell shares his experience with installing and operating the COMAC 2T Keg washer filler machine which was purchased last year from COMAC’s local agent HBM Packaging Technologies and installed by Ashley and his team in August 2018.
“We were supported by COMAC and HBM directly, with some initial questions but otherwise we managed to set the equipment up easily.
We decided to purchase a COMAC machine as our existing keg washer filler needed replacing after only a few years of use, and we wanted a step up in quality.
The biggest advantage for us has been the added confidence over the basic cleaner which we replaced. Cleaning our kegs with caustic, acid & steam ensures the Kegstar ‘pool’ kegs that we use are thoroughly cleaned so we don’t need to worry about what was in them prior. It’s also easy to use and we have no qualms in leaving inexperienced operators running it”.
How long Have you been using the Comac Keg washer filler 2T?
“We installed it in July 2018 and have been running it on a nearly daily basis since then”.
What improvements has the 2T offered Colonial?
“The biggest advantage for us has been the added confidence over the basic cleaner which we replaced.
Cleaning our kegs with caustic, acid & steam ensures the Kegstar ‘pool’ kegs that we use are thoroughly cleaned so we don’t need to worry about what was in them prior. The sensors and automation on each cleaning step mean kegs that are not cleaned properly for any reason are rejected and they can be examined. The same applies to the steam sterilising and filling head.
Because of this, we can leave less experienced alone to operate the machine without worrying about a problem slipping through”.
How would you rate the machine as far as?
- Ease of use: Very simple to operate.
- Speed: Speed is as described. We run at 27-30 kegs per hour on a very thorough cleaning regime.
- Reliability: We’ve had no real issues with the keg washer/filler.
- Serviceability: Easy access to all parts. Simple to replace seals, etc.
- Build Quality: well built, no issues at all.
- Local support: HBM have responded to and dealt with all queries and minor challenges quickly. They are great to work with. The Comac team have visited a couple of times as well and have been a good learning resource for us for inhouse maintenance, etc.
Would you recommend a Comac Keg Line, if so why?
“For all reasons listed above, I would certainly recommend the Comac Keg Line”.
What do you like/dislike about the machine?
“I like everything listed above: it’s easy to make changes to programming but also easy to lock it out so no one can change things without the right level of authorisation. Installation was nice and easy. We managed it all ourselves. The only minor fault was that the keg flipper initially had a few minor problems which were a couple of cracked welds and a broken foot support which HBM repaired very promptly. This was not unexpected, given up to 200 full kegs per day slide down it, so it does take a beating!”.
Thanks to Comac Marketing Office for sharing this interview
Colonial Brewing online: