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Old 08-21-2010, 03:47 AM   #1
Moonpile
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Default Custom Refrigerated Bar

I'm finishing out the first floor of my split level house and as a result I'm able to build in a custom bar. I don't have a huge amount of space and I wanted to maximize the number of Cornies I could get in there so I'm building a custom insulated refrigerated space under the bar.

I've had a HUGE amount of inspiration from so many threads here I can't even count them. Thanks everyone!

Over the last few days I've finally gotten a chunk of time to work on this, and it's taking quite a bit of time.

Here's the basic frame of what I started with:



Behind this picture is my utility room, and to the left, the back of the drywall you see is the drywall for my bathroom. The main living room will be behind me.

Here I've dryfit the Haier 5000 BTU window unit air conditioner I'm going to use to cool the space. The box above it is a cleat for a removable draft box to rest upon. I've insulated this in the same manner I've insulated the rest, as shown below.



This is the wall between the bar and bathroom where the sink will drain and where the water supplies for the sink will be. I've insulted the space with two sheets of 1 1/2" Dow Super Tuff-R, which has an R-value of 9 per sheet. Needless to say, there's a lot of Great Stuff in here too. What I'm doing is spraying it into the corners in the back of the space, pushing in a sheet of insulation, spraying more into the corners of that space, pushing in the next sheet and spraying still more into the cracks that are left. Around the plumbing I just sprayed lots of it. I think I've used about 6 cans so far on this alone (not counting the rest of the basement build!).

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Old 08-21-2010, 03:53 AM   #2
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Here's the air conditioner base, looking from my utility room at the back of the bar area. The crossbar in the front ensures that it drains back. To the right is a bulkhead above which will be a removable panel to aid in access to everything under the fixed side of the bar, including kegs, bottles I'll store in the space under the sink where kegs won't fit, and the water filter.



Back in the front, half the countertop will be fixed and have a sink in it. This is two sheets of 1/2" plywood laminated and screwed together, then screwed down to the bar whick will form the substrate for the surface:



I'm using cork floorboard for a surface material, and will take advantage of the interlocking boards to interlock with the removable part of the surface to the right. I've tested the cork floorboard for condensation and other water resistance and even after several hours it had no discoloration or other ill effects.

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Old 08-21-2010, 04:00 AM   #3
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In this shot, I've got the insulation installed in the three walls and in the fixed portion of the lid. The sink is still just dryfit. A Corny is shown for scale. I'm hoping to get 8 to 10 in here total.



Here's the underside of the sink. Still just dryfit:



I'm going to line the entire thing with FRP pebble board and in this shot I've got the floor installed. For the floor, the pebbleboard is laminated to 1/2" plywood with liquid nails. The walls will all have Reflectix in the small gap left by the sheet insulation.

Also, right before I got to this point I had the brilliant but time consuming idea to install an outlet inside the bar. It may be hard to see here, but it's in the upper right corner. It's protected by a GFI in the utility room and one outlet is switched so I can turn the rope lights on and off. The other outlet is for an always-on fan, if I need it. The rope lights are actually plugged into a different outlet in this picture:

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Old 08-21-2010, 04:05 AM   #4
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In this shot, I've got the pebbleboard applied to the wall between the bar and bathroom, which also has the sink drain and water supplies, which are barely visible on the extreme right. I've applied Reflectix to the inside of the front wall of the bar.



And this is where I left off earlier today. I've got the pebbleboard applied to the inside front of the bar. I'm using the pebbleboard trim and clear silicone in the corners. There's Liquid Nails on both sides of the Reflectix and I've screwed the pebbleboard to the framing studs, since I've heard that the glue might dry out and delaminate.



Here's the water supplies and sink drain, with the rope light plugged into it's switched, GFI protected outlet:

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Old 08-21-2010, 04:20 AM   #5
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Tomorrow I'm setting in the sink, lining more of it and adding the wall opposite the bathroom wall, which is in the passageway to the utility room. I've been using that gap to get inside to work on it, so that's going to be about the last thing. I'm pooped and I just drank a sixer of Flying Dog IPA, so goodnight. More tomorrow.

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Old 08-21-2010, 12:43 PM   #6
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Very impressive! This is the route I would have gone with my refrigerated bar build (AC Unit) if I didnt have an extra mini fridge laying around!

So the "outside" portion of the AC unit is behind the bar, toward the utility room? What are your plans for cooling and condensation? Are you going to rig the thermostat up so that it stays on longer to bring the temps down? How low are you expecting that thing to go?

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Old 08-21-2010, 12:52 PM   #7
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nice build... I just finished my basement bar they are a must have! haha

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Old 08-21-2010, 01:13 PM   #8
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The back of the AC unit is in the utility room. I tried to put it high enough that I can run a hose over to my sump for condensation if need be. I've looked at the unit and I'm not sure where it drips out though. If it just has to go into a bucket, that will be fine too.

I'm going to test it out and see what it does with the factory thermostat at the lowest setting, but I'm fully prepared to have to override that and get a Johnson.

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Old 08-21-2010, 10:54 PM   #9
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Today I got the sink installed and some more FRP pebble board. Here's a shot of the sink with the regular hot and cold water on the left and the filtered water on the right.



And the plumbing underneath, including the filter. Not a drop of water down there on the first try!



This is step one of insulating the sink so that it doesn't sweat. Reflectix and duct tape. I'm considering building a bit of a box around it and spraying in some Great Stuff Gap Filler (black can). I'd have to leave an area around the water supply hoses.

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Old 08-21-2010, 10:58 PM   #10
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Oh yeah, and I used my step bit I bought from bargainfittings.com, which I'd previously used to drill out my keggles, to drill another hole in the sink for my water filter faucet!

Seriously, the DIY aspect of brewing has given me both the confidence and the tools to approach a project like this and the rest of my basement build. And this forum has been a big part of that!

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