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Beer Engine

Beer Engine is an equipment used for pumping beer. Originally it was used to pump beer from a cask, located at the basement of a pub or bar. Beer Engine is manually operated, although it may be gas powered or electrically powered.


The beer engine was invented by John Lofting in the year 1688. He was a Dutch inventor, manufacturer and merchant, who lived in Amsterdam but moved to London in 1688, where he patented the beer engine, after acquiring a British citizenship. His invention was further developed and improved by Joseph Bramah, in the year 1797. Bramah was a locksmith and hydraulic engineer.


Swan Neck – This is a curved spout which is attached to the beer engine. It is used along with a sparkler, to aerate the beer while it is being filled into the glass. This gives the froth or the ‘head’ to the beer as we see it sitting at the top of the beer mug.

Sparkler – This is a nozzle containing small holes which is fitted to the spout of the Swan Neck. It resembles a shower head, and the small holes contribute to making the beer frothy.

Pump Clips – This serves as the badge which is attached to the different spouts, to show the name of the beer served and other details.

How to Buy a Beer Engine

In order to buy a beer engine one must keep certain criteria in mind –

  • Carefully check for the size to see if it will fit the bar for which it is being bought. It is important to ascertain the entire serving area available for use.
  • It is important to keep in mind the mounting process for the beer engine.
  • Check whether parts of the engine will be available separately, incase of requirement after prolonged use.
  • Heed must be given to shipping charges, as sometimes the shipping charges may be as much as or more than the engine itself.

Popular Brands Selling Beer Engine

  • KegWorksthey offer beer engines made of stainless steel with a smooth satin finish.
  • Angram LtdThey offer a Clamp On Hand Pump which comes with a removable cover plate and easy access to the cylinder.
  • Harry MasonThey offer cabinet beer engines with a choice of handles and taps, with optional chrome or brass finish.