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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > Kegerators and Keezers > The Pallet Keezer
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Old 07-27-2012, 05:53 PM   #1
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Default The Pallet Keezer

It all started Memorial Day weekend. I spent the weekend in Wisconsin with the wife and kids. We we came home I see that my neighbor has his old freezer at the curb. So after we unpacked and settled in I went over to the neighbors house to have a beer and ask about the freezer.

So the conversation went something like this;
Me "So did your freezer die?"
neighbor "No, it's just getting old, the insulation is falling out of the lid, and we wanted a bigger one."
Me "So it still works?"
neighbor "Yeah, do you want it?"
Me" Hell YEAH!"

So that's how I got a free freezer. From inspecting it closer I believe that this freezer was built in the 70's. I noticed when I removed the access panel on the side that it had been repainted white from it's original color of AVOCADO GREEN! Then came the planing on how to turn it into a keezer.

Here you can see the thin metal lid. The inside of the lid is in the background to the right leaning against the wall.


Here's the inside of the lid after I removed the fiberglass insulation.


Here's a closeup of the tension hinge.


At this point I pretty much assessed that I would be making a new lid.


The next step was to make a base with some wheels. I used some scrap oak 2x4's that I had from a pallet that I took apart for another project.

I made dovetail joints for the corners then glued n' screwed them



The bottome of the freezer had some feet tack welded on,


The angle grinder made quick work of those. This allowed the freezer to sit a lot more flat and a little lower.


The next step was to assess the inside. I removed the rubber gasket which revealed some 1/4" Masonite.


I removed the Masonite to reveal the fiberglass insulation.


At this point I thought that I might be able to pull the whole tub out and replace the insulation. WRONG! Turns out that the cooling lines are welded to the tub. Luckily I didn't damage the lines.

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Old 07-27-2012, 05:54 PM   #2
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So now I had to figure out how I was going to build this thing. Since this project fell into my lap, and I hadn't budgeted for it, I had to do it on the cheap. I already had a mini fridge kererator that I could scavenge all the parts from. So hardware wasn't an issue. But what to skin the keezer in?

Then it hit me. I had all these boards from pallets that I took apart for another project. Perfect!


So I needed to build up the opening of the freezer from where the gasket was removed. I had some scrap 1/4" MDF that worked. I cut the MDF to size and glued and tacked it in.



Next I built up a collar using pallet boards. I used construction adhesive and a brad nailer to keep it in place.


I bought a sheet of 1" foam insulation. The insulation was dovetailed in the corners to reduce air leaks. Once I did a test fit of the insulation I glued it in with foam board adhesive.



The inside of the collar was lined with some scrap 1/4" tile board I had.



I topped off the new collar with more 1/4" MDF...


and the original gasket.


I also sealed the inside seam between the freezer and the collar with foil duct tape.

Next I started laying out the pallet boards to see how it would all fit.



Here you can see I started attaching the boards. I added a 3/4" spacer to the collar and the base to space the boards away from the freezer and allow some air flow. The spacers are screwed in and the boards are nailed to the spacer. So in the future I can take the sides off if I need to.


Here I started making the tower. Again using pallet boards and scrap wood.





The tower is 24" wide. I spaced the taps so in the future I can add two more taps. Yes, I can fit five kegs in the freezer.

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Old 07-27-2012, 05:54 PM   #3
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As I was working on the tower, I was also working on the new lid. Here is the new frame for the lid.


And here's the new completed lid.


I built the lid up using 1/2" OSB for the top, 2" of foam insulation inside, and 1/4" white sintra (plastic) for the inside. I also added a 1-1/2" foam gasket where it meets the collar to create a nice airtight seal.

Also in the picture you can see I made the temp controller using the eBay aquarium controller.

Next I started laying out the fan locations.


I used some PVC couplers to make the holes in the lid to be a little more finished. The smaller one will be for the beverage lines.


Here it is with the tower just set in place while I figure out the next step...the top!

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Old 07-27-2012, 05:55 PM   #4
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So my original plan for the top was tile. But once I started thinking about the look of this keezer it became clear to me only one thing would do...concrete!

First I started with the form work for the top. I made it 3/4" deep to match the drip tray I picked up on eBay.


Then I made a 1/2" deep form for the backsplash of the tower.


Then I set in some wire mesh. I used gutter screen for the mesh. It was cheap and was perfect for the small job.


Next was mixing and pouring the concrete. I used concrete countertop mix, only $14 a bag. I almost used a whole bag.





Once it set up I toweled it smooth. After it set for 24 hours I removed the forms.


Here's where I forgot a step before I poured the concrete. I never put a release agent on the forms. So the concrete bonded with the wood!

Here you can see a chip that occurred when i pulled the form. It was a small repair though.


And here I had to cut slots into the back to peel it away from the backsplash.


Once the forms were free I wet sanded the concrete. First I started with 80 grit, then 120, then 220, then 1000, and finally 1500. Then I sealed it with a masonry sealant and a coat of carnuba wax.

After that it was just a matter of mounting the tower, wiring everything up, connecting the beverage lines, and adding the trim boards.








I'll have to get some pic's of the inside of the tower and the keezer later.

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Old 07-27-2012, 06:06 PM   #5
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Bookmarked to get back to it later...

I like the internal Frame.

I have a heavy table top I am going to use for a build and I need ideas on how to support it's weight.

DPB

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Old 07-27-2012, 06:43 PM   #6
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Love the build. Looks like your doing a great job. I have one concern. Pallets are known for being kept outside and treated rough. I would be worried about mold and mildew being those boards. I use pallets for lots of stuff around here, but I would think twice about using them on this.

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Old 07-27-2012, 08:45 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjmac85 View Post
Love the build. Looks like your doing a great job. I have one concern. Pallets are known for being kept outside and treated rough. I would be worried about mold and mildew being those boards. I use pallets for lots of stuff around here, but I would think twice about using them on this.
You have a valid point.

I picked the pallets up from a house the were building next door to me. The were brand new and were used to deliver stone. They've been sitting in my garage for a year. So with the fact that the wood was pretty clean, it doesn't come in contact with the beer, and the keezer is in my garage, I think I'm going to be O K.

I do appreciate your concern though.
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Old 07-27-2012, 08:59 PM   #8
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looks really great nice job

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Old 07-27-2012, 09:06 PM   #9
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one man's trash, is another man's treasure.

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Old 07-27-2012, 09:09 PM   #10
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Great work repurposing and old freezer and pallets.

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