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Old 01-03-2013, 06:06 PM   #1
kwhyte
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Feb 2010
chicago
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I'd like to put in a 4-tap "bar" to serve from kegs but face a few challenges.

First, the only reasonable spot for it is in a long and narrow room, so it needs to go up against a wall and be no more that 18 inches deep. There is plenty of length, so 4 kegs in a row will fit easily, and at 9 inches diameter the 18 inches is more than enough. However no fridge/freezer I know comes in those dimensions.

Second, to be acceptable to the rest of the household, it need to be attractive - in other words, look like furniture not like an appliance. Attractive wood cabinets of the the appropriate dimensions aren't hard to find, but I don't know how to keep the inside cooled.

I like my beer warm by most standards, 50-55F, and the basement location is usually only 10-15F above that. Is there anything I can reasonably install in a cabinet / wrap around the kegs / etc. that can provide that much cooling? Or any small HVAC / piezoelectric gadget / etc ? I'd consider a prebuilt unit if anyone makes something like this.

Any suggestions?

 
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Old 01-03-2013, 07:28 PM   #2
JuanMoore
 
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Oct 2009
The Old Pueblo
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You could build an insulated box with the dimensions you want (or insulate some existing cabinets) and cool it with the compressor and coil system scavenged from a mini-fridge. Used mini-fridges can often be found pretty cheap from places like craigslist. There are several builds using that general idea in this forum. I'll see if I can find one for you.

Edit:http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/whis...orator-285887/
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Old 01-03-2013, 07:37 PM   #3
kwhyte
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Feb 2010
chicago
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JuanMoore View Post
You could build an insulated box with the dimensions you want and cool it with the coils scavenged from a mini-fridge.
I've thought about this plan, but have been put off by the difficulties people have had with the scavenging - I'm not that handy, so it makes me very nervous. From what I've seen, some mini-fridges are really easy ( the freezer compartment shelf is also all the coils, etc. ) and some are a nightmare - does anyone have any explicit recommendations for this approach?

Edit: Thanks for the link. If I can find a mini-fridge that looks right I'll give this a shot.

 
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Old 01-03-2013, 08:32 PM   #4
SpentGrains
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Sep 2012
Livermore, CA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kwhyte View Post
I've thought about this plan, but have been put off by the difficulties people have had with the scavenging - I'm not that handy, so it makes me very nervous. From what I've seen, some mini-fridges are really easy ( the freezer compartment shelf is also all the coils, etc. ) and some are a nightmare - does anyone have any explicit recommendations for this approach?

Edit: Thanks for the link. If I can find a mini-fridge that looks right I'll give this a shot.
Your best bet then might be a tall and skinny wine fridge turned sideways rather than hack it up, if you can find one that has an actual refrigeration system, the cheaper ones use the thermoelectric device and that won't be strong enough.

 
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Old 01-03-2013, 08:40 PM   #5
inhousebrew
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Aug 2012
minneapolis, minnesota
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Sounds like potentially a tough build considering space restraints and your admitted limited handiness and time for scavenging parts. That said, never underestimate your handiness with the internet around. I just built an electrical control panel for electric BIAB batches of beer. I've never wired anything in my life before this other than a cheap stir plate but after a few months of reading and research on this site and others I was able to scrounge up enough parts and put this thing together without killing myself so maybe you'll surprise yourself. I guess what I'm trying to say is to take your time, do some research and you'll probably figure something out.
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