Tennis Balls pressurizer


I am in the process of making my pressuriser. I have received my keg. I have ordered a barbed disconnect. I have a schrader valve off a bicycle tyre. I am going to join the valve to the disconnect with a 5mm wide tube and secure both ends with hose clamps.


So I put together a Corny Keg pressurizer. Due to shipping delays and an incorrect part being sent from one of the suppliers, it took me about 5 weeks from ordering to receiving everything and testing.

The keg arrived first and had pressure in it, so I know it holds pressure. I released the pressure and cleaned it out and dried it. And then it sat for a few weeks while I waited for the other parts.

Leaking Post/Poppet?
Got everything this week, put it all together, and started repressurizing about 50 old balls of different ages (some very old). I just used a bicycle pump and pumped it up to about 23 pounds. Checked a few hours later, and checked the pressure with a tire gauge. All the pressure was gone, so there was a leak. Pumped it up again and listened. Didn't hear anything. Didn't feel anything. Put soapy water around the lid and didn't see anything. Put soapy water around the posts and didn't see anything, but then saw bubbling from the top of the liquid post that I'm not using.

I pushed in the poppet and tried reseating it, and I think that did the trick. It's holding pressure now. I put a balloon over the post, too, and tightened it down with a rubber band, so I can watch for further leaks, and it seems okay. But when I'm done with this batch of balls, I'm tempted to completely remove the liquid dip tube and look for a way to completely seal off that post, maybe with a rubber disk inside the post or something. Any better ideas of how to cap it?

I've thought about putting a cheap gauge on the leaking poppet post, but that's another $25 or so of materials and fittings. But it might be a way to "cap" the leak and check the pressure without having to resort to my tire gauge, which releases at least a bit of air each time.

Collapsing Balls?
When I pumped in the air, I did hear a couple faint noises inside the keg. Can't completely describe the noises, but may be the sounds of a couple old balls collapsing? I haven't opened the keg since it's only been about 18 hours, but when I do, will it be really obvious which balls collapsed? Will they still be collapsed, or will they kinda re-round themselves? I guess if they all LOOK okay, I'll individually feel and bounce them and I should throw out any obviously dead balls (assuming these are beyond saving now)?

What next?
I started to buy two kegs, but decided to go with just one first, to make sure this even works (I know it will cost me another $10 in shipping if I order another keg later, but...). But I bought a case of Dunlops to use over the next couple weeks while I charge up these old balls, and then I guess I can rotate back and forth? Maybe I can overlap them a bit, and figure out a system of taking maybe 1/3 of the balls out of circulation at a time?

But in regards to this first batch, should I leave them at 25 pounds for 2-3 weeks? Or should I bump it up to 30 pounds after a week or so? Should I unpressurize them and check them out first before bumping it up to 30 pounds?