This is my fermenter build (still a bit of work in progress, but thought I'd document it for anyone who may be interested…)
I started by gutting the old fridge. Sorry – no pics here. As the fridge had the external coils in the back, I just started cutting through the metal on the top off with a pair of shears. I then cut down the back to where the tubing went through and unclipped the freezer compartment from the inside of the fridge. I cut around the back inside plastic so that I could just lay the refrigerator on its back, unbolt the compressor, coils, thermostat, etc. and then just lift the case off of the coils and compressor.
I started building the new cabinet by making the front and back pieces first, keeping in mind that I wanted insulation on the ceiling and floor, and enough height to hold several carboys with airlocks. I think I ended up going with standard kitchen cabinet height.
I then added a few temporary rails from front to back to hold it all together. Once the rails were screwed on, I stood the cabinet on its side, slid it over the compressor and coils, Added permanent mounting points for the compressor, coils and a temporary mount for the freezer. Once everything was attached I placed the cabinet back on its base and remembered to take a few pictures.
I wanted to use the cabinet for empty keg storage as well, so I measured where to add the wall between fermenter side and storage side, and added some wood framing for the floor.
The permanent top framing was made to allow the wood to sit flush with the front and back so that I could add a countertop. As I was measuring I kept in mind that there would be 1’ insulation on all walls, ceiling and floor.
Once the top was cut, insulation was glued on and it was set into place. The freezer compartment was then bolted directly through the ceiling. I then put the foam in the floor.
FYI - The PVC pipe in the back is the drain for my sink. It just drains into the driveway.