Sporadically working flow meter (SF800-RJ Kickstarter)

Anyone have any suggestion on what would cause a previously working flow meter to now start registering flow, but then work intermittently? I have a single tap setup and the tablet app registers flow, but a 12 oz pour only registers as 1 to 4 oz. I always clean out my tap lines after a keg and hang to dry between kegs. The KBPM indicator lights are indicating flow and data transfer. With this problem, also comes an increase in ghost pours after the tap handle is closed (ie I close the tap, indicate via the app that the pour is finished, get back to the main screen, then a few seconds later the app goes back to the pouring screen and registers 0.1-0.3 oz)

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Should I pull apart the tap tower and pull out the flow meter to make sure its clean?

Kegbot server v.1.1
Kegbot apk 1.0.0 (June 20,2014)

Have you ran the calibration in the manage taps? That night help with the wrong pur volume

In regards to the small pour after you finish pouring, sometimes ghost pours happen after a pour due to co2 moving in the line.

@joshuawhite5522 Have you experienced ghost pours even with your CO2 source shut off? I’ve previously tried to run the calibration setup, but it was so far off, that I ruled that out as a possible cause. I experienced the same disparity of ounce tabulation in the calibration setup (ie, pour 12 ounces in a measuring cup and the calibration setup only measures 2 ounces)

Yes to the pours b/c there is dissolved co2 in the beer in your line and pressure in the keg. So even if you kill the source there is a possibility that some co2 could work its way though.

That’s strange about the volume disparity hopefully someone here has the answer. When you pour is the volume poured a slow steady climb or does it jump around? Also which meter do you have SF800 or ft330?

Usually, when I pour, the app immediately recognizes the start of a pour, registers about 1-2+ ounces and then stops metering despite the beer continuing to flow. If I stop the flow and wait 30 seconds or so, I might get the app to meter another 1-2+ ounces before stopping again despite continued flow. So to answer your question, its a steady increase for the first couple ounces and then it abruptly stops metering. My drinking sessions are riddled with 1 and 2 ounce pours that I’ve been manually editing to the correct amount.

I have whatever meter came with the initial Kickstarter wave of shipments.

Does the kbpm pour indicator led flash and stop or stay constant flashing? What type if tablet are you using and do you use a USB otg cable?

Here is my build thread that I just update yesterday.

The flow indicator light fast flashes when I start pouring although I have never paid attention to how it reacts throughout the remainder of the pour. I’ll have to check that out tonight. The power and data polling lights are working.

I’m using an Asus Eeepad Transformer TF101 tablet that has worked fine in the past. I do not use an OTG cable. As you can see in the thread I linked to, the Kegbot is powered and communicates with the tablet through the keyboard docking station. I tested all the components together about a month ago before I created the enclosure and all went well. The pours were registering correctly and I haven’t changed anything since then. I’ve checked all the connections, the RJ45 jack is snug and the usb cable is also snug and secure.

Is it possible the flow meter crapped out?

@mikey Should I disassemble the tap lines and take out the flow meter and run through the initial tests from the original installation documentation?

The data transfer light should blink through out, if it runs jerky like your pours we can assume it to be the meter, if not we need to look to other sources for the problem

Ok, I’ll test it out tonight and report back. Thanks for the guidance.

It can’t hurt, of course it’s a bit of work. It’s possible something is caught in there. I assume you’ve also checked that the meter is pointed in the right direction (look for the arrow).

@mikey Yes, the flow meter is pointed in the correct direction. I haven’t changed anything with my setup other than mounting the tablet more permanently as show in the linked build thread. I wasn’t able to check the data transfer lights last night, but I’ll make sure to do it tonight (as have a beer!). Maybe running diagnostics won’t be so bad :smile:

I am having problems with my flow meter. I have emailed the support a few days ago and have got no answer back. My single tap system was purchased for Christmas and everything worked on the first day. The next day the flow meter was not registering. I read some questions and answers on this forum and trouble shot the system. I have since disassembled, cleaned and made sure everything was installed correctly again and it still is not registering. any help would be appreciated.


It might help if you turn off your tablet, restart the server and then boot your tablet. I had trouble with my flow meter not functioning properly and the cause for this was that I used a different RJ-45 connector instead of the original that came with the flow meter (it turned out that the KBPM could not read the input from the DIY connector). When I switched back to the original RJ-45 connector everything started working fine.

If you use the original flow meter cable and you already have tried restarting the tablet and the server then you could power cycle your droplet (if you are using Digital Ocean).

Hope this helps!


I am not using a server (I’m not smart enough for that). I needed to keep track of usage so I am only using the Kegboard Pro Mini, FT330-RJ and Android tablet.

Disregard it mysteriously started working.

I wish mine would mysteriously start working!

Well, this is me finally getting around to reporting back. The kegerator has remained empty since I initially reported this problem. I bought a tower cooling fan a few weeks ago and tried to install it this evening only to find out the hose wouldn’t fit past the flow meter in the tower. So, I broke down my entire setup and remembered about this thread I started.

As I originally suggested, and @Mikey agreed, I took everything apart and went back to basics with just the flow meter (SF800-RJ) and the KBPM. I followed the directions about verifying the data lights on the KBPM [https://kegbot.org/docs/getting-started/hardware-installation/#verify-the-kegboard-pro-mini] just as I did when I first purchased it and I think I have the root cause. The TX LED is not flashing consistently with the flow of the water which pretty much is a replication of the symptoms when I had everything hooked up in January and first notice all the beer wasn’t being accounted for.

Now, I remember back to when I first bought the kit and doing the initial tests and I recall the TX LED flashing consistently when liquid was passing through it and I think I remember the RX LED flashing too. I’ve looked all through the meter with a flashlight and I can’t see any blockage and I’ve ran water in both directions just in case something was stuck. Bottom line, I think my flow meter is dead/faulty.

I’ve clicked through to the new kit and see that there’s a new flow meter (FT330-RJ). Did the SF800-RJ have issues so the FT300-RJ replaced it? How do I go about getting just a FT300-RJ? Are there any troubleshooting steps that anyone would like to suggest that I may have not done to see if my SF800-RJ is salvageable?

To answer this question, there are no known issues with the SF800 flow meter. The most recent Kegbot blog post describes the reason why they shifted to the FT300 unit:

However, our order volume has not been large enough to support the considerable expenses involved in importing the meters from Europe, sourcing and stocking custom fittings for the European (BSP) threads, and retrofitting the meters — while still staying under a $89/meter maximum.
SwissFlow has been very accommodating with their pricing, but we still need to make ends meet and keep Kegbot systems affordable. So rather than raise the price of a single tap kit, we’re trying a new part that allows us to keep the same prices.

I’ve received the new FT300 flow meter, but I have yet to install it. I’m moving in a few weeks so I’ll be setting everything up again at my new place. I’m sure one of the first things on my list to do in my new place will be get a keg and have a beer. I’ll report back to see if the new flow meter solved all my issues.

I had a similar problem with the FT300-RJ. It worked great for months and then one day, it started doing the same thing as described above - it would only register 1-4oz even though I poured a whole pint. How did I fix it?

I took out the FT300-RJ, ran it under hot water for 20-30 seconds and noticed that a small piece of brown, slimy-like sludge fell out of it while the water was running. When I re-installed the meter, everything was back to working order.

If you think about it, there is a small rotor spinning inside the meter that detects the flow of fluid (see http://www.swissflow.com/technology.html). With just pure water flowing though it, chances are there would not be any buildup of debris in the meter, but we’re dealing here with beer - a medium that tends to leave residue when exposed to air (leave a couple of drops of beer on your counter over night and see what happens… :slight_smile: ).

I know that the lines are supposed to be air tight, but what are the chances that you get all the beer out of the lines during cleaning between kegs? Or how about when you don’t drink for a few days and the beer stands in the lines/meter.

I ALWAYS thoroughly clean my lines between kegs but I think that it is next to impossible to remove all the beer buildup in the meter after it was in the line for months.

For me fixing my meter was as simple as giving it a good rise with hot water to give it time for the calcified beer to breakdown so it can be rinsed away. Since then (and after reading some posts) I have also upgraded my pour faucets from the cheap generic brand to the Perlick 650SS flow control faucet ( http://www.homebrewing.org/Perlick-650SS-flow-control-faucet_p_4896.html ) that has a ball and floating front seal to prevent beer from being exposed to the air. I actually upgraded the faucets because I was having problems with the handle freezing on me when trying to pour a beer after a couple of days of inactivity. The new faucets work great (no more freezing) and, as a bonus, they also keep the air out (according to their manufacturer info).

Anyway, sorry for the long rant but maybe this will save someone unnecessary expense of replacing the meter when all it needs is a good rinse. Just my 5 cents…

Cheers… :smile: