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Kegerator

stosh

Darth Bailer
Jul 20, 2001
22,107
217
NY
So I've been looking around at some of the Kegerator kits at Best Buy, Walmart, etc....

Most of them have mixed reviews and I'm not sure if I should buy one of these or convert an old fridge from Craigslist.

Has anybody bought one recently? Wondering what your experience has been.
 

jonKranked

Press Button, Receive Stupid
Nov 10, 2005
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get an old chest freezer, swap the thermostat. go from there. you can get the lines, fittings, taps, etc from a homebrew supply company like northern brewer
 

jonKranked

Press Button, Receive Stupid
Nov 10, 2005
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to clarify - swap the thermostat for a refrigerator thermostat. IIRC its like a $20 part. that will turn it from a freezer to a refrigerator essentially.

chest style is more energy efficient since you don't lose the cold air every time you open the door.
 

skyst3alth

Monkey
Apr 13, 2004
866
0
Denver, CO
Some chest freezers have a set screw in the thermostat that you can dial back to keep it around 40*F without swapping anything out.

I've bought three off Craigslist, turned two into kegerators and one into a fermentation chamber. Haven't had any issues, usually spend $50-$75 for one in good shape. Chest freezers are the way to go and build a wooden collar for the taps.

Check out www.homebrewtalk.com
 

stosh

Darth Bailer
Jul 20, 2001
22,107
217
NY
Ok cool, thats what I'll look into then.

Thanks for the recommendation guys!
 

stosh

Darth Bailer
Jul 20, 2001
22,107
217
NY
I like the chest freezer idea but I don't want to build a collar. Seems like everybody builds collars for them.
 

jonKranked

Press Button, Receive Stupid
Nov 10, 2005
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i've seen a few (more advanced / larger) setups where people have bored through the chest freezer wall, ran the hoses through the hole, then configured an insulated plug for the hole. the hoses were all then run to a normal style tap built into a home bar.
 

skyst3alth

Monkey
Apr 13, 2004
866
0
Denver, CO
Collars are only as hard to make as you want. Some people get real fancy, since I live in an apartment I just had Home Depot cut the wood to length, use L-brackets to make the collar. Drill, stain, then more L-brackets to screw directly into the lid and silicone in the gaps. Found some clear plastic corner bump protectors, spray painted them black and just nailed to make the edges look pretty. Get some of that squishy foam strips for insulation where the collar meets the fridge, original hinges screw directly into the collar. You can have this done in a few hours start to finish.

My two kegerators. The fermentation fridge also has a collar so I can get 4 kegs in there to ferment in, but it's just plain wood covered in stickers, nothing fancy.

I can take more pics of the inside if you'd like. Ive since replaced the tap handles with plain black ones from a homebrew store, the wood ones were kind of a PITA.

4-tap




3-tap

 
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skyst3alth

Monkey
Apr 13, 2004
866
0
Denver, CO
photo(2).JPG

Gives you a better idea of how simple it is under there. The kegerators I used 1/4" foam insulation and some reflective tape around the wood on the inside, not sure if it is worth it or not, although the ferm chamber stays mid 60's vs high 30's.
 

stosh

Darth Bailer
Jul 20, 2001
22,107
217
NY
Collars are only as hard to make as you want. Some people get real fancy, since I live in an apartment I just had Home Depot cut the wood to length, use L-brackets to make the collar. Drill, stain, then more L-brackets to screw directly into the lid and silicone in the gaps. Found some clear plastic corner bump protectors, spray painted them black and just nailed to make the edges look pretty. Get some of that squishy foam strips for insulation where the collar meets the fridge, original hinges screw directly into the collar. You can have this done in a few hours start to finish.

My two kegerators. The fermentation fridge also has a collar so I can get 4 kegs in there to ferment in, but it's just plain wood covered in stickers, nothing fancy.

I can take more pics of the inside if you'd like. Ive since replaced the tap handles with plain black ones from a homebrew store, the wood ones were kind of a PITA.

4-tap



3-tap



"She's a beaut' Clarke"
 

stosh

Darth Bailer
Jul 20, 2001
22,107
217
NY
You probably don't want to mess with drilling through fridge walls and risk hitting a line, that's just me though. Whatever route you decide let me know and I can just price out all the parts you'd need on www.ritebrew.com , you'll save a good chunk of change over those all-in-one kits.
It's cool that they sell they Perlick faucets. I'll price a setup through them too!
 

Brian HCM#1

MMMMMMMMM BEER!!!!!!!!!!
Sep 7, 2001
31,653
80
Bay Area, California
photo.JPGphoto (1).JPGphoto (2).JPGI looked at different options when I built my outdoor bar. Found this Danby online for $535 shipped, no tax. Its a one piece I converted to a built in. Better yet, this was the second one they sent me. The first one came in dented in the rear, called them and they sent out a new one. They were supposed to pick up the bad one, but the shipping company refused. Sat in the box for a year in the garage and sold it for $400 as it worked perfect. Total cost..... $135:thumb:
 
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stosh

Darth Bailer
Jul 20, 2001
22,107
217
NY
View attachment 114056View attachment 114057View attachment 114058I looked at different options when I built my outdoor bar. Found this Danby online for $535 shipped, no tax. Its a one piece I converted to a built in. Better yet, this was the second one they sent me. The first one came in dented in the rear, called them and they sent out a new one. They were supposed to pick up the bad one, but the shipping company refused. Sat in the box for a year in the garage and sold it for $400 as it worked perfect. Total cost..... $135:thumb:

Didn't read your post after I noticed you had it stocked with Hard Cider.






*where'd you buy it?*
 

stosh

Darth Bailer
Jul 20, 2001
22,107
217
NY
I don't know if they stock them anymore, Buyersedge.com
Looks like you're right.
My friend just told me he has a fridge with a kegerator built into it I can have for free. I figure it's something to start with to see if a kegerator works for our usage.
 

pugslybell

Chimp
Jan 23, 2002
73
2
Durango Colorado
Stealth how much harder is it to brew all grain? I have been using friends discarded and bad beer to distill. I am interested in trying out an all grain method for making the booze base?
 
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skyst3alth

Monkey
Apr 13, 2004
866
0
Denver, CO
Stealth how much harder is it to brew all grain? I have been using friends discarded and bad beer to distill. I am interested in trying out an all grain method for making the booze base?
Well, distilling is illegal and I for sure can't help you with anything that has to do with that.

BUT, if you wanted to make your own wort, well that's easy. The biggest thing is having a good thermometer. Pretty much crush up grains, add hot water, let it sit for an hour at 150*-155*, then drain it through a manifold to seperate the liquid from the grains. Plenty of ways to skin a cat here, personally I use a cooler with a CPVC manifold on the bottom. Google search how to make a mash tun.
 

pnj

Turbo Monkey till the fat lady sings
Aug 14, 2002
4,697
40
seattle
Making wort for distilling is EASY. fwiw....

making wort for beer is also easy but if you want consistent results you need to be consistent and as mentioned, a thermometer is needed. I paid 20 bucks for my digital one but my dial cheapo is just as accurate. digital is just easier to read.

You can do Brew In A Bag (the bag replaces the false bottom/manifold).

As skyst3alt said, it's EASY to make all grain beer.

homebrewtalk.com
 

TN

Hey baby, want a hot dog?
Jul 9, 2002
14,140
1,305
Jimtown, CO
I was brewing 5 gals every other week when I was keeping Kegerator stocked. That was also when I was freelancing.

I wish I the time now-a-days to keep up with that kind of volume.
 
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