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Old 03-22-2011, 02:25 PM   #1
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Default Lager Fridge Build

I've been wanting to start making lagers, but never had the ability to control my temp to the point needed for lagers. My wife and I also keg our beer. But my problem is my kegerator only fits 2 cornies, and I have two taps. So what's in there is what is on tap. If I have kegs of beer ready to go, they sit in a crawl space, waiting to get carbonated (since I only have one regulator) and cold. This lead to the Lager Fridge. It has a digital thermostat so that I can control the temperature in the unit, and it has a CO2 distribution block in it so that I can carbonate up to 4 kegs, and also cold condition them. This way, when a keg in the house kicks, I just come out to the garage, and grab one out of the lager fridge. So last week, I got on craigslist and came up with this haul.

The freezer and the tap were both $50 each. I really just needed the regulator off the tap, but the extra tap is gravy. The freezer is

Saturday morning I came back from Lowes with some lumber.

This was quickly turned into a dolly, to make the freezer mobile.

With some of the scrap from the dolly apron, I routed a chamfer edge on a piece of stock, and epoxied it to the side of the fridge wall. At that point, I mounted my distribution block, ran the gas lines, and test fit some of the pieces going in this contraption.

I should be able to fit two 7 gallon carboys, and at a minimum, 4 kegs (thought I am pretty sure I can get at least 6 in here). The freezer was larger than the one I was originally going to buy. But the lady sold it out from under me, and this one was available (and $25 bucks cheaper). From there, I bought a digital temp controller, a GFI outlet, a 2 gang new construction box, and an extension cord. I cut off the receptacle on the extension cord, ran it into the gang box, and wired up the GFI and the digital thermo. I took the metal piece off of the gang box, used to hold it to a stud, and actually cut it up so that I could mount it to the holes for the lid hinge. This thing doesn't move at all now. I just have to plug the freezer into the GFI, and then set the temp. I wired it this way so as to not completely hack up the freezer, and make it so I could loan it out to a homebrew friend if needed in a pinch. I had a trim plate all set up, but the last cut shattered the thing into a million pieces. I'll make another one tonight (should have bought two in the first place). Here she is in her new home. The fridge to the left is the commercial beer/bbq fridge.

I'll need to move some of the tools behind it obviously. Here's a close up of the thermo.

And here's the inside at the moment. Have my Shwarzbier (brewed sunday while smoking a couple racks of ribs) fermenting away.

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