Converting a freezer to a kegerator - The Perfect Man Cave
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Old 10-22-2008, 01:05 PM
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Default Converting a freezer to a kegerator

Okay, you can simply buy a kegerator and have it up and running. There are plenty to choose from. But, what if you are the handyma-built-it-yourself type?

Well, a kegerator is nothing more than a refrigerator with a hole in it. The main purpose of it is to keep the keg cold. If you have an old freezer or refrigerator around you can convert it to a kegerator yourself. Here's what to do...

First you need to find a freezer or refrigerator. Craigslist is your friend. I picked up a 15 cf freezer which holds 2 kegs for $40. I had to wait about 6 weeks for it to appear, but it was worth it. You can buy new for mucho bucks, but an old freezer works wonders. There is no difference between an old freezer and a refrigerator if the refrigerator can get low enough temps. You really need to get to 38 degrees for a good keg pour. Some refrigerators can't get that low, so that is why you see so many freezers converted rather than refrigerators. I would go with an old freezer because you know if it works it will get to the right temperature.

Now that you have your "freezer" the next thing you need is something to control the temperature. This is the item you need:

http://www.micromatic.com/draft-keg-...s-pid-E54.html

There are two types of this controller, one is digital, one is analog. Get the digital because it tells you exactly what temp is inside the freezer. What this controller does is take a reading of the inside of the freezer. If the temp is too high it turns on the freezer to cool. When the temp hits the temp dialed in on the guage it turns the freezer off. The freezer plugs into this unit so the freezer is turned on and off depending on the inside temp of the freezer. It works really well. You can have the unit sense a 1 degree change in temp and adjust to it. This will control the temp in the freezer very good. The price of a digital controller is around $100 on Oct 22, 2008.

Now that you have the temp stabilized you need the following items:

CO2 bottle
CO2 regulator
CO2 line (5')
Beer line (5')
Keg Adapter
Faucet with Tower

The price of these items on Oct 22, 2008 is around $115.

So, you can immediately see, if you can find a 15' cu freezer for $40, you can have a 2 keg kegerator for around half the cost of a new 1 keg kegerator.

Before I go any further, here are the places you need to shop for the components:

http://kegworks.com
http://beveragefactory.com
http://micromatic.com

Once you have the freezer you need to decide whether you are going to cut holes in the top of the freezer or raise the lid. It's really your choice. If you raise the lid you essentially put a wood rim around the freezer and then place the lid on the freezer. This has the advantage of keeping all the lines and shanks cold for pouring. Here is a picture of this:

http://www.anthonyro.com/bar/

This is easy to do and an out the door fabrication. If you don't mind looking at the external part of the freezer do it and you are off and running. If you want to box the freezer in or cover it up you need to drill holes in the top of the freezer and mount a tower. In a recent dining room to bar conversion I did I top mounted a tower to a hinged piece of wood on top of the freezer. I did this to hide the freezer and create a more elegant look with the rest of the bar. You can do either. It really doesn't matter. You must remember this though: Never drill into the sides of a freezer, that's where the elements which freeze the freezer are. If you touch one of them the freezer is toast. you can drill through the insulated top all your want, but never through the sides. That's why if you go for the wood trim version you built a wood rim to run the adapters through.

If you have all these parts the rest is easy. It is really a matter of hooking everything up.
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Old 10-22-2008, 01:25 PM
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Default Re: Converting a freezer to a kegerator

Good info, Beach. I have ordered from beverage factory and can vouch for them being good people. They have a lot of info on their website.

Personally, I took an old fridge and coverted it. Drilled a hole in the side to run the CO2 line in and the beer line out. I have a tower monted to a counter next to the fridge with the faucet and a drain in front of it hooked to a sink drain. Got my tower and keg coupler from Beverage Factory.

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Old 10-23-2008, 11:26 PM
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Default Re: Converting a freezer to a kegerator

Is it necessary to drill through the freezer? Could you just drill the wood or if you have the room leave everything inside?
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Old 10-24-2008, 06:25 AM
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Default Re: Converting a freezer to a kegerator

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Originally Posted by Gadgets View Post
Is it necessary to drill through the freezer? Could you just drill the wood or if you have the room leave everything inside?
Well at some point you need a line of beer to go to the outside to pour the beer from the faucet. Whether you drill the top of the freezer and put a tower on top or put a wood ring around the freezer and then drill through the wood you have to have someplace to get the beer. In my setup I have all the equipment on the inside of the freezer.
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Old 10-24-2008, 07:31 AM
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Default Re: Converting a freezer to a kegerator

Aust has a nice setup where he built the wooden "ring" around the top of the freezer and re-mounted the door to the wood. He then put the taps on the wood, so no damage is done at all to the freezer and it can be "reassembled" if need be back to a freezer.
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Old 10-24-2008, 02:22 PM
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Default Re: Converting a freezer to a kegerator

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Originally Posted by Shadow View Post
Aust has a nice setup where he built the wooden "ring" around the top of the freezer and re-mounted the door to the wood. He then put the taps on the wood, so no damage is done at all to the freezer and it can be "reassembled" if need be back to a freezer.
There are pictures of this in the last link of the original post (first post) of this thread. Not mine, but a perfect example of this.
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Old 10-24-2008, 02:48 PM
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Default Re: Converting a freezer to a kegerator

lol, I wish I could say I was drunk at the time but I swear I looked at the pictures in that link and saw the holes drilled in the freezer.
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Old 10-31-2008, 01:36 PM
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Default Re: Converting a freezer to a kegerator

My set up - Co2 sits on the inside, just right of viewable area.. Obviously not all the lines where in and attached when I took picture of the guts.


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Old 11-02-2008, 01:49 AM
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Default Re: Converting a freezer to a kegerator

I gotta make me one of these, looks good boys, great reviews.
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Old 11-30-2008, 09:49 PM
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Default Re: Converting a freezer to a kegerator

I have never seen beer stored in soda containers before. Are these home brews? I have only seen kegs and mini kegs.
They are cool though....can be drank quicker than a keg to prevent waste.
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