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Old 08-11-2009, 03:43 AM   #1
vanbcguy
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Default Silver King Kegerator Build Thread

I'm not actually brewing at home just yet, but I've been using a local U-Brew service instead (West Coast U-Brew)... Kinda nice to have someone else to clean up after you!

Anyhow, I've gotten sick and tired of having bottles all over the place. The whole spend-hours-bleaching-your-bottles-out thing has gotten pretty old so the next natural progression is a home draft system!

I started looking around online and found that pretty much all the cheap units are just that - cheap. I figured if I was going to end up replacing taps, regulators, lines, temperature controls and everything else anyhow I might as well just build my own! I decided I'd be happy with something that could handle 2 1/4 barrels and the search was on...

Well, this popped up on Craigslist at exactly the right time:



It's a Silver King commercial under-counter fridge. It's zero-clearance on the top, back and sides so it can be completely sealed in to a countertop or something in the future and it's BEEFY - this thing will survive just about anything.

I've got all my lines/draft tower/drip tray/taps/etc on order, but in the meantime I decided to keep my cans cold:



You know, gotta make sure the fridge is working properly!! Nice thing with this Silver King is the stock temperature controls seem to be able to take care of getting the liquid temp down where I want it. I haven't done anything to it yet and it's holding quite happily at about 36-38 degrees F. Perfect!!

Picked up a hole saw that should be able to handle the stainless so that's been sitting here eagerly waiting. A friend (who owns a bar) gave me this stout tap and the handle too!



This thing will hold a regular half barrel, 2 1/4 barrels or 3 cornies no problem along with a 10 lb gas cylinder. Had to get low profile Sankey couplers (my U-brew place can deal with Sankey just fine and has everything there to clean them properly), also got a dual regulator and dual tap tower.

I'll update the thread as I get the rest of my bits and get my build done, but this is what I've got so far!

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Old 08-11-2009, 06:20 AM   #2
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Looks pretty slick- gonna do a tower? Multiple taps I'd assume if you're interested in nitro.

Edit- op says tower. Gotcha.

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Old 08-12-2009, 03:51 AM   #3
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Yup, dual tap. For the time being it's going to run straight CO2 with dual pressure regulators - I change up my beer habits and like to fiddle too much to be happy with a single pressure reg.

I've got an IPA coming up, but I gotta find myself a 1/4 barrel or two first. There's a local brewery or two that has 'em, just gotta choose what to christen the kegerator with! Right now I'm looking in the general direction of Russel brewing's Cream Ale or something similar. If we were in to the tail end of September or later I'd snap up their porter in a minute, just too warm right now!

Trying to decide what to do to try and clean up the stainless on the Silver King. It's a bit ragged - so far I've opened up the back of the fridge and cleaned out the mouse house (it was in a barn when I got it - no sense burning out the compressor!)

Cleaning the condensor out actually dropped my power usage by about 10% so far too... Serious bonus! I already did the evaporator when I first opened it up. I've got one of those plug in power meters - I always like to know how much I'm adding to the bill when I get something new.

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Old 08-12-2009, 05:54 AM   #4
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so you're going to keg in quarter barrels? not a corny fan?

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Old 08-12-2009, 01:48 PM   #5
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Yeah, I thought about doing cornies and even found a bunch at Princess Auto but a requirement I set for myself was the ability to hook up commercial kegs. My U-brew place transfers to Sankey kegs after filtration too so the ability to pick up my batch and just bring it home with no transfer is a huge plus. Usually though I put 50% in to cans for taking out of the house, so a quarter barrel is the perfect size.

In the end I figured it's no big deal to convert later on... The fridge will take 3 cornies plus a 10lb CO2 cylinder quite nicely (or at least it does when I draw everything up!).

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Old 08-14-2009, 06:58 AM   #6
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OK, so I'm still waiting for my taps/tower and things, but in the meantime I figured I might as well try and clean this thing up a bit!



After a whole lot of reading I settled on wet sanding this sucker... I got myself a few different bits and pieces to try and clean it up but the wet/dry sandpaper really seemed to do the trick the best.

Here's a "before" pic:



...and after!



Coming along great!

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Old 08-14-2009, 01:49 PM   #7
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That thing is SICK! Stainless always looks so good.

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Old 08-14-2009, 03:35 PM   #8
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Thanks! I'm really happy with how well that worked... I used an automotive scotch-brite pad in some of the "hard to reach" areas like behind the handle and things too, it worked OK but definitely not as well as the sandpaper. There were a LOT of deep scratches everywhere though...

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Old 08-15-2009, 10:07 PM   #9
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looking good!

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Old 08-15-2009, 11:57 PM   #10
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Couldn't help but notice the "PowerFist" brand from PA!!!!

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