So after bottling for a few batches, I elected to start kegging. I now bottle a 12 pack of each batch, kegging the remainder. I went through the forums and decided that I would like the option of up to 8 kegs and bought the Frigidaire 14.8 cu ft freezer to begin with. Installed it with a Johnson digital temp controller. Finally put together the finances after the holidays to install the collar and taps.
I went through dozens of diy collar builds to find one that would work for me. My goal was to maintain the integrity of the original freezer without drilling or modifying it if possible. I came up with a design that has a 1x10 that slips over the outside of the freezer with 1x8 wood and handcut 1" insulation that sits on the top of the freezer. I had to go with the 1x10 in order to mount the hinges (9" long) without redrilling into the back of the freezer.
I preordered most of the materials and built it up over last weekend. I am pleased with the outcome and decided to share some of the photos taken during the building.
The only parts that I still need to wrap up are the installation of a stout tap and finishing up the dual regulator to feed the second C02 manifold. I didn't have the funds for now to drop another $250ish for the tap, tank and regulator for one tap.
Inner box that rests on top of the freezer.
Mitered outer 1x10 attached.
Assembling the outer boards, these fit tightly over the freezer with a 2" lip that slides down the outside of the freezer creating a nice seal.
Drilled pilot holes for the shanks.
Oversized holes drilled in the insulation to allow the shanks to butt up against the lumber.
Everything assembled and glued.
All set for final touches before painting. I filled the nail holes and touched up the mitered corners.
Rear view with holes drilled for CO2.
Painted front view.
Painted rear view. Holes all set for CO2 and temperature probe.