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Old 12-18-2010, 04:50 PM   #1
jcoxen
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I'm in the early stages of planning a keezer build and got to wondering...is there any advantage or disadvantage to completely replacing the freezer lid with a homebuild one?

I was considering building a complete frame - including the top - out of 2x2 lumber with a fairly high R-value insulation between the frame members. I could put in a piece of 2x4 in the frame for a mounting location for the taps and sheath the entire assembly in 1/4" plywood.

Has anyone else done something similar? If so, how did it go? Any problems? Any advantages?



 
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Old 12-18-2010, 04:54 PM   #2
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I think the biggest disadvantage would be the extra work and the fact that the lid would not match the body of the keezer. Unless you are planning on framing in entire keezer with wood or something. Other than that I can't see why it can't be done. I don't think chest freezers have a ton of insulation in the lids as most of the cold air within them does not want to rise up.

The advantage that I can see to building one would be that you could most likely make it work however you want with the hinge. Also it may look more polished when it's all said and done as far as the transition between the lid and the collar.



 
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Old 12-18-2010, 04:54 PM   #3
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sounds to me like you are going to be making a very heavy lid. I would question is the springs on the hinges could hold up that much weight.

IMHO the insulation in the factory lid is much better than the insulating value of 2x4 lumber. I would just construct a collar and put a skin on the existing lid if you are going for a different finished look.

 
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Old 12-18-2010, 10:42 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scut_Monkey View Post
I think the biggest disadvantage would be the extra work and the fact that the lid would not match the body of the keezer. Unless you are planning on framing in entire keezer with wood or something. Other than that I can't see why it can't be done. I don't think chest freezers have a ton of insulation in the lids as most of the cold air within them does not want to rise up.

The advantage that I can see to building one would be that you could most likely make it work however you want with the hinge. Also it may look more polished when it's all said and done as far as the transition between the lid and the collar.
I don't think there'll be that much extra work since the design I'm thinking about uses square cut 2x2 lumber for the frame. An 8-10 inch piece of 2x4 will give me a solid mounting place for the taps. Cut foam insulation in all the open spaces and a 1/4" plywood skin. I may get a wood-working buddy of mine to miter cut the plywood since that will look neater.

I want to put a wrapper or skin on the freezer body so it's not so obviously an appliance. I"ll space it out about 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch for air circulation. I need to make the finished product look at least somewhat furniture-like so that I can put it in the family room. Either that or SWMBO will make me keep it in the basement which means heading downstairs whenever I want a beer.

 
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Old 12-18-2010, 10:55 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrewMoreBeers View Post
sounds to me like you are going to be making a very heavy lid. I would question is the springs on the hinges could hold up that much weight.

IMHO the insulation in the factory lid is much better than the insulating value of 2x4 lumber. I would just construct a collar and put a skin on the existing lid if you are going for a different finished look.
The frame will be 2x2 lumber, not 2x4. I'm thinking about a 2x4 block to run the shanks through. The frame will be a skeleton construction with the dead space filled with cut foam insulation. The weight shouldn't be that great the the R factor should be much better than plain wood.

 
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Old 12-19-2010, 03:38 AM   #6
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Have you thought about putting the keezer in the basement and running chilled lines to your dispensing point? That way you do not take up much floor space and you may keep swmbo happy.

If the run is a reasonable length, you can chil the lines with a fan to push chilled air from the keezer... There are some good post discussing these tyes of designs.

 
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Old 12-20-2010, 03:06 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrewMoreBeers View Post
Have you thought about putting the keezer in the basement and running chilled lines to your dispensing point? That way you do not take up much floor space and you may keep swmbo happy.

If the run is a reasonable length, you can chil the lines with a fan to push chilled air from the keezer... There are some good post discussing these tyes of designs.
I wouldn't mind doing that but I rent and my Landlord, the Lutheran Church next door, would probably say, "No".
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Old 12-20-2010, 03:57 AM   #8
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Two questions, can you access the HVAC vents from the basement? Are the first floor vents in the floor? I think you see where i am going.

Get some foil duct tape to seal the hole you will need to cut... Seal it after installation, and then again after you remove the system before you move out.

 
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Old 12-20-2010, 04:05 AM   #9
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I was going to ditch my stock freezer lid and build my own, until I just decided to work with the stock lid. I'll use liquid nails and glue my granite tile to the top, front, and sides of the lid.

-=Jason=-

 
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Old 12-20-2010, 05:11 AM   #10
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I plan to eventually replace the lid on mine, but haven't gotten around to it. I have my taps mounted on a collar, but want to replace that and put the taps in a "coffin" box tower. I plan to build the lid as a torsion box, with a grid of 1/2" plywood pieces on edge forming the framework, and a skin of 1/2" plywood. I plan to put Styrofoam in the gaps of the grid. The top and bottom sheets of plywood can just be glued down with Titebond or Elmers yellow glue. Brads will hold it until the glue dries, unless you have lots of clamps and cauls. I've used these torsion boxes elsewhere. They make a remarkably rigid and fairly light structure that should work well as a lid. If you are going to attach hinges, put some extra wood into the grid at the attachment points. I'll probably put 1/4" luaun on top as "veneer", with several coats of polyurethane, unless I get lazy and just put down Formica. Tile would be nice, but heavy. I suspect a torsion box would do better with this load than the stock lid.

You do need access to a fairly accurate table saw to rip pieces of uniform width for making the grid. Finding straight 1x2's that are of sufficiently uniform width for this application is pretty optimistic. That's why I use plywood.



 
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