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My keezer build with photos

Scott Ickes

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Last December, I put a keezer together.  It was bare bones at that time.

I took vacation this last week and finished it out.

I finally got the funds to finish off my keezer.

I'll post a few photos a day.  I took vacation all last week and finished up everything by the finish sanding, staining and sealing.  My 5" x 24" drip tray should be here next Wednesday.  I'm really happy with it.  I have four kegs in it for now.  Eventually, I'll have a fifth one in it.

I'm going to post photos in the order that I took them.

First the initial framing for the cabinet.

I put it on rollers, so that I can roll it out onto my back patio for parties, barbeques, etc.  In two weeks, I'll be rolling it down to the other end of the block for our annual neighborhood block party.

These first photos is how far I got it at Christmas time last year.  Unfortunately, I never did take a photo of the inside back then.

I'll have a photo of the inside of the chest freezer, when I post the photos of it going back together.

I eventually add two more taps to it.  So, for about 8 months I was able to have four beers on tap.

Enjoy!
 

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Scott Ickes

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This is what I started on last weekend.

Framing it out, so that I could put a cabinet around it.

I left a 3 inch air gap in the front and left side.  I have about  2 foot compartment on the right side for my CO2 tank, temperature controller and a power strip.

At this point, it is framed in and ready for the cabinet panels.

Notice the two 3" fans in the last photo at the right front of the chest freezer.  They are there to move air across the front and down the left side, and then out of the back of the chest freezer.  Chest freezers dissipate heat through the front, sides and the back.  Without the fans, it would get quite warm and overwork the compressor, shortening the life of the freezer. 
 

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Scott Ickes

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Now for the cabinet panels.  I went with cabinet grade sanded birch plywood for the panels.  It should stain beautifully.

Tomorrow, I'll post photos of the trim work.  Maybe more. 
 

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Mofo

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Looking good! How does it seal up with the collar of 2X's under the lid? Have you noticed your compressor running more often?
 

Scott Ickes

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The collar is actually 2 x 10's.  It seals really nice.  My compressor only comes on about once a day, maybe twice at the most.  I do a lot of my office work out here in the garage with it sitting right next to me, and I don't recall ever actually hearing it come on. 

 

Scott Ickes

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The trim added with the bar top.  The bar top is just sitting on it at this time.

Later on, it was liquid nailed down onto the chest freezer lid and also has two 3/8 inch bolts holding it.

In the last photo, the bar top looks like it's warped and low in the middle, but that is just an optical illusion from the darker wood grain in the middle.  It's actually perfect flat.
 

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Scott Ickes

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I had a change of business plans, so I'm not leaving until tomorrow morning.  This gives me time to post more of the progress.

This is the roughed out coffin box on the top.  In these photos, it's just sitting there, while I judge how to trim it out.

The front piece for the faucets is 1/2" thick.  Behind that piece is a 1/2" gap between the front piece and the coffin box itself.  The coffin box is 3/4", same as the bar top.  I put 2' of white rope lighting weaved over and under the faucet stems in the gap, so that the bottom of the front piece kick board will have back lighting shining down on the drip tray.

The bottoms of the faucets will be 12-1/4" above the drip tray, so that I can easily fill growlers, 22 ounce bombers, etc.

There is also is rope lighting under the trim on the front of the bar top.  I just laid it in there for these photos for now.  I don't have the clips purchased yet, but once I do, it will cast a nice glow down on the front of the cabinet below the bar top!

I wish I had purchased 4 inch stems, instead of the 3 inch stems.  The 3 inch worked (barely!), but it would have been nice to have an extra inch to play with!!  Lesson learned!!
 

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Scott Ickes

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Here are the drawings that I worked off of for the Coffin Box.
 

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Scott Ickes

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More photos.  The lighting was underneath, so I took a few photos of it.  It's not under the bartop anymore.  I need to get some type of clips to hold the rope light in just the right place on the underside of the bartop, behind the trim.
 

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Maine Homebrewer

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The two tap rig at the top is basically what I did, except I used scrap 2x4s and plywood. Yours looks much nicer.

What do you plan to do about condensation? Freezers are meant to be frozen, so you may end up with water pooling up and trying to rot the metal.
 

Scott Ickes

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Maine Homebrewer said:
The two tap rig at the top is basically what I did, except I used scrap 2x4s and plywood. Yours looks much nicer.

What do you plan to do about condensation? Freezers are meant to be frozen, so you may end up with water pooling up and trying to rot the metal.

It ran from December to now, without any condensation issues.  I've been told that if you get it insulated and sealed really well, condensation won't be an issue.  Condensation occurs, because of ingress of moisture from the room through poor sealing.  I've caulked the daylights out of every seam.
 

jomebrew

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I keep a couple old kitchen towels in the bottom and replace them every couple months. 

I also use this dehumidifier http://amzn.com/B000H0XFD2. I have had zero mold/mildew problem since using this. 

 

Scott Ickes

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I took a break during my keezer build to head to a club members home.  Last October we brewed up 65 gallons of a saison.  After primary fermentation was complete, (some of it with wild yeast that had been harvested from honey. See the Mute Dog Fermenting website to learn about the harvesting of this wild yeast strain by one of our club members.  http://mutedog.beer/wild-yeast ), we then put it into a 59 gallon Pinot Noir barrel, that we had purchased. 

I actually used White Labs Abbey Ale yeast (WLP530) for my primary fermentation.  So this saison was in the barrel for almost 10 months.  We had added some WLP650 Brettanomyces bruxellensis just after filling to add some farmyard funk to it.

We then brewed up a slightly different version of the saison recipe.  I brewed 10 gallons this time.  We took about 40 gallons of the saison brett out of the barrel (I got my 5 gallons in a keg and they are in the keezer carbing up).  Then we refilled the barrell with 40 gallons of the new saison (the start of our Solera project!).

My ten gallons used the wild honey yeast from my buddies yeast bank of wild yeasts, as can be learned about on his website.

The beer we took out was at .998 final gravity!!  It's dry, and crisp with just a slight farmy funk to it.  Nothing over the top, but a really nice summer time drinker! 

My initial saison addition to the barrel last October had a final gravity of 1.006 going in.  Most of the others were at 1.004 to 1.006 range also.  So the brett did do some nice work lowering the gravity about .007 points on the specific gravity scale.

Delicious beer.  We're looking forward to what this Solera will turn out next.  We'll take out about 20 gallons next time and put 20 gallons of new saison back in.

We intend to keep it going as long as we can.

 

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Scott Ickes

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Then it was back to the keezer!  Which I pretty much finished up, except for final sanding, staining and sealing.

Last of the photos until next weekend. 

Here you can see the two muffin fans that are installed inside the coffin box.  One is pulling cold air up out of the chest freezer into the coffin box, while the other is circulating it back down into the freezer area.  The middle hole is for the beer lines.  I used 1-1/2" Styrofoam insulation inside of the coffin box all the way around to keep it nice and cold in there.  I forgot to take a photo of that before putting the back board on it (sorry...I'll take one the next time I have it opened up).  I only have 4 of the beer lines hooked up for now.  I'm not going to spend the money on the fifth one, until I get at least 3 ball lock kegs, because I can't get all 5 taps working, until I have those three  ball lock kegs.  Right now I have 5 pin lock kegs, and they're too wide to fit a fifth keg in, but once I switch them out, I'll have 3 ball lock kegs on the floor and two ball lock or pin locks on the shelf.

So, it's holding steady at 3.5 degrees celsuis and it appears that the compressor only comes on once every day or two that I can tell.  I keep the four fans (two inside the coffin box and two inside the cabinetry that circulates fresh air around the chest freezer inside the cabinet) running constantly.  I'll only turn the hidden lighting on when I'm having a party at night, to put a nice glow to everything.

My drip tray should arrive any day now!
 

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Scott Ickes

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Photos of the inside.  Right now I have fiberglass insulation inside.  I have the 1-1/2" thick Styrofoam insulation that I just haven't installed it yet.

 

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Scott Ickes

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It's all finished!

I used a cherry stain on it and three coats of satin finish polyerathane.  I sanded between each coat of polyerathane with 600 grit sand paper.

I'm quite happy with the results!!

The first party is this coming Saturday!
 

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