PDA

View Full Version : Building a Kegerator


Kyle
10-26-2011, 07:20 PM
Has anyone ever done this?

I already have the fridge.

I need all of the hardware and co2 system.

I also would like a custom tap. I think I've found a place to make me a Mastercraft tap.

Help make this project cool.

CruisinGA
10-26-2011, 07:21 PM
I did it with a chest freezer.
Use a kit, it is cheaper. Through door taps are better than tower taps. Get a cleaning kit and use it between every keg. I have a squeeze bottle one.


What else do you want to know- they're fun!

lettmeknow
10-26-2011, 07:29 PM
kegerator.com has all the shiz you need

Table Rocker
10-26-2011, 07:34 PM
Here is a link to parts:

http://www.beveragefactory.com/draftbeer/conversion-kits/tower-kits/How+to+Build+Kegerator.shtml

Kyle
10-26-2011, 07:34 PM
Ok it's a freezer on top and fridge on bottom. I have removed the styrofoam that is used to control the fridge temp. I am chilling the fridge to see how cold the freezer gets and if the fridge part gets too cold.

This will be used in the garage not inside the house.

I think I would like to cover the fridge in cool wakeboard, ski, Mastercraft stickers.

The pics are the cooling system that that held the styrofoam.

I guess my first question should be is the fridge going to be too cold without the styrofoam in it. It takes 2 minutes to put the styrofoam back in.

Next question should be what kind of door kit is a quality kit. I want everything including the drip tray.

Kyle
10-26-2011, 07:40 PM
The fridge was my moms. She bought a new one and is throwing it away. She said it leaked water. I told her the drain was frozen or has dirt in it. She didn't care and bought a new one. Anyway I took this thing apart and the drain tube had enough insulation and dirt build up that it didn't drain properly and then froze over and finally causing a drip. 3 hours of taking apart, clearing the drain, washing with a hose, cleaning inside, I have a perfectly good fridge with nothing wrong with it.

Kyle
10-26-2011, 07:59 PM
I just checked fridge temp and it's in the low 30's. The freezer and fridge were both open 3 hours unplugged and was 80* 2 hours ago. I'm betting if the fridge ran for 2 hours and has hit low 30's and freezer has already frozen a tray of ice that the styrofoam will be needed. Just re installed styrofoam.

east tx skier
10-26-2011, 08:22 PM
Has anyone ever done this?

I already have the fridge.

I need all of the hardware and co2 system.

I also would like a custom tap. I think I've found a place to make me a Mastercraft tap.

Help make this project cool.

I can walk you through the whole project. Done it before. Not much to it, but you need to make sure you don't drill where the cooling lines are. That depends on what type of fridge you're using. I can give you a good idea depending on what you have. Looking back, looks like you should be fine going through the door. Not sure why you took the insulation out. Typically, in this type of setup, you don't have to worry about cooling the lines or the tower. Otherwise, I'd recommend a computer fan in the fridge to circulate the air.

For the faucet, spring for a Perlick. Go for the $27 one. Skip the creamer faucet they make. Cheap faucets will stick like crazy.

Probably want to go with a 6" shank. It's a 7/8" hole for a faucet if I recall correctly.

Buy 10 feet of 3/8" beverage tubing. Any kit will come with 5 feet, but it's probably not enough and you'll end up with foam. Beer line is cheap. Spare yourself the misery of trying to balance a CO2 system with not enough line and swap out for length. I bought 10 and planned to cut down, but 10 works well in my setup and my brother-in-law's.

Google for a chart that tells you how much CO2 pressure to use depending on the temperature of the beer. For a commercial keg, it will come pressurized to about 3 volumes of CO2. That is too high for most styles. They just do it for storage and shipping Really, 2--2.5 volumes is a happy medium for most styles. So you'll need to off gas for a bit on a commercial keg over a couple of days to get the pressure down to 2.5 volumes. Set your CO2 regulator to about 11 psi at 38 degrees, but it varies. For example, since a colder fluid will absorb more CO2, if it's colder, you can set the pressure lower. If it's warmer, you need more CO2 to maintain carbonation. Don't just set it at 6 psi because it doesn't foam. Beer will keep for a long time as long as the temp and pressure are maintained. If you leave it low, it will go flat fast and you'll be jacking it up to increase it, end up with foam, try to lower it, etc. Best to let it equalize based on temp, pressure and style of beer.

For line cleaning, the squeeze bottle kit with some BLC (beer line cleaner)is great. I only use the BLC once per year and do my other cleanings with hot water and generic oxyclean. It does fine. The BLC has the advantage of removing beer stone. But you'll save some dough not using it with every cleaning. Beer stone doesn't build up that fast.

Home Depot metal paint catchers make great drip pans below the faucet for a lot less than the drip pans at any of the beer stuff retailers.

beveragefactory.com
austinhomebrew.com
micromatic.com

All good. Austin Homebrew will have it to you for $7 shipping by the next day in my experience. Beverage factory probably has better deals though. In DFW, homebrewHQ is good.

My current setup.

https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-Gc9GtrSiucQ/TG3McPJ0DRI/AAAAAAAADDI/R6M5Sco9Wxk/s640/100_2089.JPG

https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-5X2G481p7ps/TG3McN5f6dI/AAAAAAAADDM/q7k7BJZfKP8/s640/100_2090.JPG

east tx skier
10-26-2011, 08:33 PM
I just checked fridge temp and it's in the low 30's. The freezer and fridge were both open 3 hours unplugged and was 80* 2 hours ago. I'm betting if the fridge ran for 2 hours and has hit low 30's and freezer has already frozen a tray of ice that the styrofoam will be needed. Just re installed styrofoam.

If you can get beer to 38 degrees, you're good to go. If you have to go colder than that, buy better beer. ;)

Rockman
10-26-2011, 08:35 PM
Go to Micromatic.com.

They have everything you need and you can download instructions for free.

It is really easy to do.

east tx skier
10-26-2011, 08:40 PM
Go to Micromatic.com.

They have everything you need and you can download instructions for free.

It is really easy to do.

I want to win a shopping spree there. :)

Truth be told, ebay has most everything you need for great prices. You just need to know what you need.

Kyle
10-26-2011, 08:43 PM
If you can get beer to 38 degrees, you're good to go. If you have to go colder than that, buy better beer. ;)

I drink miller lite. That should be great at 38*

east tx skier
10-26-2011, 08:46 PM
I drink miller lite. That should be great at 38*

Not my preference, but it'll be as good as Miller Lite can possibly be at that temp.

At 38, get the pressure to about 11 psi with the line length I suggested and you should have a nice carbonation level over the long haul.

Also, some advice I haven't followed yet, but should, get some backflow valves for your CO2 lines that will prevent the beer from getting in your regulator. The regulator will have a shutoff valve, but if you forget to bleed off pressure before you attach the keg coupler, you can get beer backflowing in the gas line and it can muck things up pretty good.

lettmeknow
10-26-2011, 08:51 PM
I drink miller lite. That should be great at 38*

How yummy!:confused:

Rockman
10-26-2011, 08:59 PM
I want to win a shopping spree there. :)

Truth be told, ebay has most everything you need for great prices. You just need to know what you need.

You and me both...plan on doing a kegerator either in the garage or basement over the winter time. I put a listing together going the freezer route...johnson control for the temp, double taps, double regulators, etc.

I think the total came up to about $450 total. I already have the freezer, just need to order the parts and get time to do it.


The only bad thing about MM is their shipping costs (IMO). I think tey are high but that's just me. I live close enough to them where I can actually just place the order and go pick it up.


Your setup looks nice!

east tx skier
10-26-2011, 09:06 PM
I have never ordered from them, but they don't have a lot of things that I can't get for a better shipping deal and probably price. I love their regulators though.

If it's a stand up freezer, be sure the cooling element isn't in the racks. Makes it hard to free up space otherwise. If it's a chest freezer, the collars are easy to build.

Spring for the digital Johnson controller. If it's going to be in the garage, you might want to consider a dual stage controller. Ranco makes a good one (that's what I use, but have used the analog Johnson controller in the past). One plug is for the freezer, then you drop a light bulb or heating pad on the other side so you can heat up the chamber when temps drop outside (and in the garage).

Thanks for the compliments. That setup was a long time coming. I did a summit kegerator in the laundry room for years. But the space there was at a premium and I knew a good cabinet guy. I pitched it as a buffet when it had food on it and a bar when it didn't.

https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-_N6OpwkCG7E/TG3McL5eeOI/AAAAAAAADDE/j7gSc7k6eSs/s640/100_2088.JPG

Rockman
10-26-2011, 09:23 PM
The freezer is a chest and I made the collar out of 2x6s to give enough clearance.

If we go with the freezer, it will be in the basement. Otherwise, our setup will be a fridge and freezer combo and wll be in the garage...

Got a couple pics for ya...let me track them down.

Rockman
10-26-2011, 09:29 PM
Last piece I added to the bar...

Rockman
10-26-2011, 09:34 PM
I would love to have choices like this...

cbryan70
10-26-2011, 09:57 PM
The freezer is a chest and I made the collar out of 2x6s to give enough clearance.

If we go with the freezer, it will be in the basement. Otherwise, our setup will be a fridge and freezer combo and wll be in the garage...

Got a couple pics for ya...let me track them down.

Ive got an old fridge in the garage that would make a great kegerator....would look good in your basement Rockman

east tx skier
10-26-2011, 10:17 PM
Nice pylon, rockman!

Rockman
10-26-2011, 10:25 PM
Ive got an old fridge in the garage that would make a great kegerator....would look good in your basement Rockman

I might have to take you up on that.

How have you been?

Rockman
10-26-2011, 10:27 PM
Nice pylon, rockman!

Thanks! It helps Livi with her form on backs! :D

tex
10-26-2011, 10:44 PM
Here is a link to parts:

http://www.beveragefactory.com/draftbeer/conversion-kits/tower-kits/How+to+Build+Kegerator.shtml

Kyle-I did mine and I used this company. I put the drill to the door and was driving to pick up a keg in under 30 minutes. You will do it in 15! Beverage factory is great!

tex
10-26-2011, 10:48 PM
I also picked up a lot of fun taps on ebay for next to nothing!

http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from=R40&_trksid=p5197.m570.l1313&_nkw=beer+taps&_sacat=See-All-Categories

GT500 MC
10-26-2011, 10:58 PM
Nice pylon, rockman!

I didn't even notice the pylon. Was just wondering if he even drank beer or has kegs full of JD with all of those empty bottles back there???

Rockman
10-26-2011, 11:06 PM
I didn't even notice the pylon. Was just wondering if he even drank beer or has kegs full of JD with all of those empty bottles back there???

Just a few...bad pic though...before walls were done.

GT500 MC
10-26-2011, 11:10 PM
Just a few...bad pic though...before walls were done.

Love that barrel...Nice work.

Kyle
10-27-2011, 12:13 AM
Love that barrel...Nice work.

Yeah I like the barrel as well. Nice set up Rockman

Kyle
10-27-2011, 12:22 AM
Doug you have gone over the top once again. Totally rockstar setup. I don't tink I'm going to spend that kind of money for my garage. Very nice set up.

east tx skier
10-27-2011, 03:44 PM
Doug you have gone over the top once again. Totally rockstar setup. I don't tink I'm going to spend that kind of money for my garage. Very nice set up.

Thanks. It's nice having it in the house. If you're going to have it in the garage, be sure to cover your faucets when you're not using them. Fruit flies love beer.

cbryan70
10-27-2011, 04:21 PM
I might have to take you up on that.

How have you been?
here it is.

72377

scott023
10-27-2011, 04:24 PM
Some sweet set ups Doug and Rockman. I'm intrigued to do this now. And I'm not a beer guy. :D

hondaprlud
10-27-2011, 07:04 PM
East Tex- American IPA? that sounds like home brew description more than a commercially made beer.
https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-Gc9GtrSiucQ/TG3McPJ0DRI/AAAAAAAADDI/R6M5Sco9Wxk/s640/100_2089.JPG

east tx skier
10-27-2011, 09:11 PM
East Tex- American IPA? that sounds like home brew description more than a commercially made beer.


Correct. I haven't had a commercial beer on tap in years. 10 gallons per month get brewed up, fermented, kegged, and served around here.

https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-B09_stkj6Xc/Tdqo2qz3cxI/AAAAAAAAD9E/pFbjKRXPprw/s1024/IMAG0062.jpg

Rockman
10-27-2011, 11:58 PM
here it is.

72377

Sweet! Does it work?

Did you get rid of those bar stools?

RM

chawk610
10-28-2011, 08:30 AM
Yep... typical boater's garage (with the exception of the micro-brew) An assortment of coolers, and stuff rat-holed under the boat trailer! Got the same deal in mine! :) I have wanted to take a stab at making beer for years... just never have. I reckon in the post apocalyptic world, booze will be worth more than GOLD!

No Skeez
10-28-2011, 10:52 AM
I think this picture has already been posted on here, but for those of you who haven't seen it:

DemolitionMan
10-28-2011, 11:31 AM
That is Bad A**!!!!!!!!!!!!

-V-
10-28-2011, 12:08 PM
Tex, what does American IPA stand for?

east tx skier
10-28-2011, 12:09 PM
Yep... typical boater's garage (with the exception of the micro-brew) An assortment of coolers, and stuff rat-holed under the boat trailer! Got the same deal in mine! :) I have wanted to take a stab at making beer for years... just never have. I reckon in the post apocalyptic world, booze will be worth more than GOLD!

www.howtobrew.com

This book is fantastic and the original version is still free to read on the website. Fantastic resource.

You don't need all of that equipment you see above. But when people get into the hobby, many eventually get to that step.

By the way, those two blue Coleman coolers with stainless ball valves on them are mash tuns.

east tx skier
10-28-2011, 12:10 PM
Tex, what does American IPA stand for?

India Pale Ale

Beer Style Guidelines (http://www.bjcp.org/2008styles/catdex.php)

hondaprlud
10-28-2011, 12:34 PM
Nice setup, I brew about 10 gal/ month myself. I've got an IPA and an imperial porter in the kegs now.

cbryan70
10-28-2011, 12:51 PM
Sweet! Does it work?

Did you get rid of those bar stools?

RM

Yes it works great. make an offer on the thing. Bar stools are gone

east tx skier
10-28-2011, 02:11 PM
Nice setup, I brew about 10 gal/ month myself. I've got an IPA and an imperial porter in the kegs now.

Right on. Dry county here. Beats driving out to the lake when I'm thirsty.

-V-
10-31-2011, 09:42 AM
i am going to have to keep this page on file for when i build mine, i want to build a light one that i can transport. i still have 8 more years of moving.

east tx skier
10-31-2011, 11:27 AM
i am going to have to keep this page on file for when i build mine, i want to build a light one that i can transport. i still have 8 more years of moving.

Here's my portable model.

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-uyP_BLKTQGU/TKS0ZRP9UFI/AAAAAAAADk0/OAg9Gc-Mo8w/s576/Portable.jpg

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-pR6o2ROk5vY/SjqiE-fV0PI/AAAAAAAACTs/yAge_LcbQ7I/s576/IMAGE_071.jpg

-V-
10-31-2011, 12:24 PM
Here's my portable model.

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-uyP_BLKTQGU/TKS0ZRP9UFI/AAAAAAAADk0/OAg9Gc-Mo8w/s576/Portable.jpg

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-pR6o2ROk5vY/SjqiE-fV0PI/AAAAAAAACTs/yAge_LcbQ7I/s576/IMAGE_071.jpg

how the heck did you make that, now that looks really cool!!!

east tx skier
10-31-2011, 01:20 PM
how the heck did you make that, now that looks really cool!!!

70 qt. Igloo Ice Cube
7/8" hole with spade bit.
faucet and 4" shank.
10' of line
2 3-gallon cornelius kegs.
20 oz. paint ball co2 cylinder with adapter for regulator

You can sub a cold plate for cornelius kegs. and have your keg on the outside for a more traditional jockey box. But this is way more portable.

jamisonsbrodie
10-31-2011, 03:29 PM
that is REALLY COOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

east tx skier
10-31-2011, 04:59 PM
It's a lot of fun at family reunions.

Kyle
10-31-2011, 05:22 PM
Doug I would put that baby on my boat. That will be my next toy.

I tell you what. I know where there is a margarita machine that could be traded for that portable setup. The margarita machine gets me too drunk and I always get into trouble and or end up single.

Kyle
10-31-2011, 05:32 PM
Doug I am going to hit you up in a few weeks when the fridge project can get rolling.

I'm interested in building a portable unit and want to pick your brain on how to build where to buy/make the portable.

east tx skier
10-31-2011, 06:40 PM
I'm here to help. Just let me know when you are ready to get rolling.

I appreciate the offer on the margarita machine, but I'm more of a beer guy and make my margaritas on the rocks.

That portable setup can be done in a few minutes.

Kyle
10-31-2011, 07:23 PM
Doug how would I make a portable setup for miller lite.

Do I use beer out of a keg to fill the cornelius keg. Surely you don't fill it with a ton of canned beer.

I really don't want or have any desire to do home brew at this time but want a portable setup. If it's not going to work with miller lite then it probably won't get made. Keg beer is just so much cheaper than canned beer in the long run. A 24 back is like $21. A keg is $95. We normally kill at least a 24 pack every week, sometimes more. At our TCU tailgate spot its more like 2.5 to 3 24 packs on gameday. So basically a game day almost consists of 2 3gal Cornelius kegs. So a keg would save me $50 in 2 weeks or $100 per month depending on home games. $400 to make a portable set up or so and then sell setup for $700 to a drunk frat boy after the game.

Just justifying my new purchase.