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Old 03-18-2013, 02:39 AM   #1
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Default Kegarator, Bar, Fermentation Chamber in progress photos

Got the cooling kegarator part of this DIY functionality complete. Thought I would share a couple photos.

Controlled with a pair of $19 STC-1000's. The left side and shelf are a kegarator / cooler for beer malts and such. That's functional today and cooled with a window AC. It works great and so far no icing on the AC. Only concern is that the AC seems to want to run the compressor a minimum of 5-min. For such a small tight space it's taking the temperature from about 40-F to 20-F.

For now I am using one STC-1000 unit to power a peltier cooler I had laying around. I attached the AC temperature prob to the hot side of the peltier cooler which triggers the AC's thermostat when the peltier runs. Similar to what the Coolbot does. As it is now the AC is always powered and blowing the fan. That's good for keeping the faucet shanks cool and even temperature throughout. My back up plan would be to directly power the AC with the STC -1000.

The box on bottom right with carboys is future fermentation chamber. Going to use a second STC to activate a small fan to pull in cool air from kegarator side and a small 200 watt heater for heat.

Eventually I hope to dress it up into a presentable bar.

The size is approximately 4-feet long 2-feet deep and 4-feet high. This ends up being large enough to accommodate 4-carboys on fermentation side and 4-cornies or half barrel keg on the cold side. There's still room for 22-oz bombers on the shelf above! I plan to enable the vertical divider of the fermentation chamber to be removable and adjustable to potentially increase the cold side if needed.

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Old 03-18-2013, 04:52 AM   #2
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Interesting. How cold is it on the keg side. How often does your AC run?

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Old 03-18-2013, 06:28 AM   #3
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That's a good looking start. How stable is it? From the pics it looks to be made of foam only. I am looking to build my own ferm chamber shortly and adding a kegorator is a stroke of genius.

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Old 03-18-2013, 09:07 AM   #4
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This is similar to what I want to build, I have a kitchen base cabinet that im thinking of converting to a bar.

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Old 03-18-2013, 01:50 PM   #5
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i woudl be worried about the stability of that thing as well with only constructing it out of the rigid foam.

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Old 03-18-2013, 04:05 PM   #6
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Does anyone know, what the insulative difference is between this foam and what is in a freezer? Like how much of this foam is needed to equate to the performance of the foam used in walls of a small chest freezer?

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Old 03-18-2013, 05:15 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EZCyclone
Interesting. How cold is it on the keg side. How often does your AC run?
I have one thermometer monitoring probe in a glass of water which has been holding in the mid to upper 30s depending on my tinkering. Despite the fluctuations in the air temperature the glass of water is holding quite steady and should be similar to beer temperature.

As it is configured now the AC is always powered and blowing the fan as a way to minimized the possibility of any ice accumulation on the AC coils. That being said the compressor is not being activated very frequently. In fan mode the AC is only drawing a minimum amount of power. I have not had the patience time how many minutes in between cooling cycles. My guess is somewhere in between 20 to 45 min it is triggering the compressor to run.

Annoyingly the model AC I have seems to have some kind of internal timer that keeps it running 5-minutes minimum regardless of the thermostat indicating it is cold enough. Which results in the internal air temperature to drop from about 40-F to less than 20-F. I have not experimented with the 3 different cooling modes (energy saver, auto) the AC is capable of, so maybe some tinkering will find a more preferable operation.
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Old 03-18-2013, 05:26 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lumpy5oh
That's a good looking start. How stable is it? From the pics it looks to be made of foam only. I am looking to build my own ferm chamber shortly and adding a kegorator is a stroke of genius.
The 2-inch foam is stronger than you might think. It is not the crumbly kind that could shatter into a mess of styrofoam balls. The panels are fixed together with high-temp hot glue which forms a bond stronger than the foam itself. For instance while working on it I was able to walk over panels that were flat in the floor without my weight denting it. Mostly full cornies are not denting the floor. However the metal shelf with tiny feet and about 2-cases of beer did leave a dent in the floor under one foot. I think before I really load the shelf I should layer the floor with some thin plywood.

Also before is becomes a bar with a weight bearing top I would need to add some structural legs to the exterior. Kind of thinking something like posts on all 4 corners, wood paneling on all sides, and a bar style top.
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Old 03-18-2013, 05:50 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EZCyclone
Does anyone know, what the insulative difference is between this foam and what is in a freezer? Like how much of this foam is needed to equate to the performance of the foam used in walls of a small chest freezer?
This foam is R-10 for the 2-inch stuff I have. Based on the thickness I doubt it is much different than a chest freezer.

My chest freezer wasn't deep enough for a 1/2 barrel keg, which kind of lead me to build this enclosure with 24-depth. If insulative efficiency is a high priority then this design could be modified to have double or triple layers of foam.
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