My keezer build with pictures

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g8tor

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First of all thanks to everyone who has shared their builds on this forum. I have read a lot of them and learned a lot. The biggest influence for this build came from Hoppopotomus and his knotty pine build and Jester and his keezer build. And I owe a big thanks to my uncle who owns a cabinet shop in Apache Junction AZ who helped me put all this together. If I were building this myself I would have went with a collar. But since I had the help of a professional I went with the Jester style keezer. I first bought a Kenmore 8.8 cu ft chest freezer from Sears. I had a gift card and with the freezer on sale it ended up costing me about $150. I purchased the Perlick Perl Forward Sealing Faucet (525SS) from Austin Homebrew Supply while they were on sale. I think they were $22. The drip tray came from barproducts.com. The rest of the stuff came from my local brew store, The Home Brewery. We wanted to leave 3 inches of space around the freezer to help keep it cool. Since I didn’t bring the freezer with me to my uncles shop (I live in Missouri) we went with the measurements from the web page which I think took into account the hinges because we had a few extra inches from front to back.

We started out by framing the base to go around the freezer. The bottom is plywood while the front and sides are oak veneered mdf.

We placed a couple of pieces of plywood across the back to give it some more support. Here is picture of one of them going in. Both boards were actually permanently placed after I got home and put the freezer in. These boards also help keep the freezer from sliding or tipping back when I open the lid because of the support lifts I installed. More on that later though.

I installed some coasters I originally purchased for a different project from Lowes or Home Depot a few years back. The extra holes you see for the wheels are where the wheels were originally before I realized the measurements for the freezer weren’t exactly right. When I started looking at the lid in comparison to the base I was building, the base was huge. That’s when I guessed that the measurements on the web page must have included the hinges and I also included 3 inches on the back of the freezer which I don’t need since the back is going to be mostly open. So I trimmed off about 4 inches off the back and repositioned the wheels.

I then framed the front and sides with oak and glued them on. I then added some moulding for the panel detail.

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g8tor

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This is the side

I then started working on the lid. I originally wanted to save the lid and construct a completely new lid in case I ever wanted to convert the freezer back to a plain old freezer. But after going through all this work and expense I figured I probably never would want to do that so I went forth with attaching the lid to a piece of plywood. I first opened the lid to see where all the wires were.

I then modified a piece of scrap shelving to fit under the plastic so when I bolted the lid to the plywood it would be more solid. I routed the edges and cut out holes for the wire connections.

I then put everything back together making sure the wires were all out of the way.

I then attached the modified lid to a piece of plywood using four carriage bolts.

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Hoppopotomus

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Nice work!!!! This thing is going to be awesome. Keep the pics. coming, because I can't wait to see the final product. Good luck with the ramainder of the build and let me know if I can help in any way. The craftmanship is superb....I wish I had a family member that was a cabinet maker. Glad my build provided a little inspiration for your build. Keep us posted! :mug:
 
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g8tor

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I've run into a couple of problems that I'm hoping you or someone here can help me with. But I'll get into those after I've posted the rest of the build.

Scott
 
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g8tor

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I next started working on the tower. I first framed the front.

Then I attached the sides.

I then drilled the holes for the taps and attached a front panel recessed in about an inch so I could I my rope light that I'm installing later

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g8tor

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More pictures of the tower. The guy on the left with the hat is my uncle and I'm the goofy looking one on the right. I was really happy with the way this was turning out.

The next picture I was wanting to see how the drip tray was going to look.

I then added a panel on the back with a piano hinge so I could easily get access to the taps

I also added some oak trim around the edge of the counter top.

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Hoppopotomus

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Holy hell....the precision and craftmanship on your build puts mine to shame! I guess that's why I went with the "rustic look", so I could hide my "craftsmanship" with logs & stone. Your coffin set up is looking really familiar. ;) Nice work and keep the pics. coming. What problems are you running into?
 

Reno_eNVy

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That's fantastic! Looks excellent.

Even though I'm going to feel like an idiot I have to ask: how did you do those screw wells? Is there a tool to start it or are you just that awesome?
 
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g8tor

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Thanks JackCrank

Nothing is going to put yous to shame Hoppopotomus. I'm glad you like it though. The problem I'm having is where the hinge attaches to the freezer. The freezer is bending and the lid is pushing back. I'm not sure if it is from the weight of the lid or the support lifts I installed. I have some pictures of it and I'll post them later.

Scott
 
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g8tor

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Thanks Rekoob

Reno,

Even though I'm going to feel like an idiot I have to ask: how did you do those screw wells? Is there a tool to start it or are you just that awesome?
I'm definitely not that good. I forget what the name of the machine is but I have a picture of us using it. You just place your board and step on the foot pedal and in 2 seconds your hole is drilled. A really cool machine.

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g8tor

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More pictures,

Here I am placing the oak moulding around the top of the tower. I don't have any pictures of us placing the moulding on the countertop but it basically is the same except larger.

I used corian for the top and that's also what is going in for the countertop. This picture shows everything dry fitted.

The next picture shows everything sanded and i just set the top on the base to see how it was looking. I didn't take any pictures of it but there are some trim pieces inside the tower that is going to fit the cut edge of the corian countertop and that is why it looks like it is sitting about a half inch off of the plywood. It will sit flush with the corian countertop.

The next picture shows the side view. You can also see that I routed out the space for the drip tray so it will sit flush with the corian counterop too. I placed a cut piece of scrap wood to use as a spacer to get the height of the drip tray just right.

And the other side

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g8tor

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Now we are ready to stain. I used Dark Golden Oak from Mohawk for the stain. My wife liked the way it was looking so much that she offered to help me stain it. Sweet!

Another picture of us staining.

All done! front view with the countertops and the drip tray all dry fitted.

Side shot

Back shot

This is where we stopped. This took us 2.5 days to get to this point. The rest of the week we spent tubing down the river, sailing in the lake, and hiking in the Grand Canyon. We also tried out some of the bars and my favorite was Handlebars in Apache Junction, AZ. The bartender / owner is named Jeff (I'm pretty sure that's his name) and he was really cool about letting us sample the beers. He has about 20 beers on tap and he knows a lot about beers. We talked about beer brewing and I told him about my keezer build. A really neat place.

When the week was over I rented a U-Haul trailer and hauled this thing back to Missouri to finish it.

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g8tor

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This picture shows a couple coats of the clear semi-gloss polyurethane from Minwax.

These are the fans I'm using. They are 4" In-line duct fans from Home Depot that I bought online. I think they were around $14 each. One fan will be blowing into the tower while the other will be blowing back into the freezer. The other hole is a short piece of PVC pipe that the beer lines and thermometer will go through.

This is my sad picture that I don't really want to show you. I trying to place the countertop on top of the base cabinet and I must not have had it centered because this end fell into the base and a piece of the moulding chipped out. This upset me quite a bit but I plan on trying to fix it later. I bought some Elmer's wood repair. I'm going to try that on a piece of scrap wood and see what that looks like finished and stained. If anybody has an idea let me know.

I bought four hand carved hard wood corbels off of Amazon for $30 each. This is what they looked liked stained.

And this is how it looks with all three coats of polyurethane. Time to move this into the house and put the freezer in.

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g8tor

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The first picture showing the hinges hooked back up to the freezer and the support lifts installed that I picked up from O'Reily's for $22 each. The guy told me they were rated for 70 pounds each although I can't find anything about that on the packaging. This picture also shows one of my problems. I never noticed this until I was going through my pictures to post on this forum. When I attached the lid to the plywood in Arizona I didn't have the freezer with me. I didn't realize the walls were so thick and the washers are hitting the walls. I don't think this is a huge problem because I placed a flashlight in the freezer and with the lid closed you can just barely see a sliver of light in the back. Its been running now for three weeks and the inside wall of the freezer are wet but there is now water pooling up on the floor. I plan on getting some of the damp rid.

A close-up of the support lift

the wiring from the love controller

The back of the keezer where the wires are going to go

Everything all wired up. I used connectors on all the wires going to the outlet and light switch so I could take the board off disconnect the wires to give me more room if needed. Although it doesn't look like it, I really tried to be neat and tidy with my wiring.

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g8tor

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These pictures show the insulation of the tower. Here is a good picture of the trim pieces inside the tower that were holding it up off of the plywood earlier.

I bought a sheet of insulation from Lowes or Home Depot and cut it to size and just started layering the pieces in and taping the seams. The hole for the fan and the hole for the beer lines merge as they go to the top.

All the insulation in place except for the top cover

I drilled a hole in the lid of a small spice container, filled the container with water, inserted the thermometer in through the hole in the lid and sealed it with silicone. Hopefully this will slow the on and off times of the fans.

the top of the insulation on.

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g8tor

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Getting late but I'll try and get the rest of the pictures up Friday or Saturday

Scott
 

Reno_eNVy

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I can't get over how nice this build is. But I need more pics.

MOAR I SAY! :D
 
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g8tor

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Thanks guys for the kind words. Well here are the rest of the pictures

I attached the corian top with velcro. I did this because this allows me to have access to the screws in case I ever need to take the top off. I think I would need to if I ever needed to replace a tap.

The next picture shows the underside of the countertop

This is the back showing the switch for the lights and the outlet controlled by the Love controller that the freezer plugs into.

And another shot of the back

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g8tor

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A final picture of the front

A picture with the lights on.

I did a test to see what the temperature in the tower would be without the fans running. The temperature in the room is 72 and the temperature in the tower stayed right around 69. So I think you need the fans for sure. The fans run for about 30 minutes and are off for about 20 minutes the way I have it setup now.

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g8tor

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These pictures are showing whats happening to the back of the freezer where the hinges bolt on. The freezer wall is bending. The lid is sitting about a half inch too far back now. I'm going to take off the support lifts and see if that makes a difference but I think it has more to do with the weight. I was thinking I could put a 2X4 across the back and attach the hinges to that. I just need to figure a way to attach the hinge to the lid then. If anybody has an idea let me know please.

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OHIOSTEVE

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It looks as if the lid is being allowed to go too far back. That lets the weight pull the hinge backwards and that bends the metal out. I cant see it pulling like that with the lid only partially open,I would attach something to stop the lid before 90 degrees and prop it open rather than allowing the hinges to do all of the work.... but then I may be wrong. IF it were me I would also try to locate about 4 more of those hinges and attach the across the back to disperse the load out a lot more. You could also place something inside the freezer such as a wide flat piece of metal longer than you think you need it towards the top of the freezer, and drill the hinge bolt holes to go all the way through ( look out for coolant lines) And put longer bolts all the way through and wide washers on the metal plate. That would disperse the weight load to more of a surface area than just those sheet metal screws into the thin outer wall.
 

Hang Glider

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I would also try to locate about 4 more of those hinges and attach the across the back to disperse the load out a lot more.
CAREFUL !!! - The factory located those hinges out of the way of coolant lines. I'd sure hate to have to buy a new freezer because you hit a line installing more hinges...
 
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g8tor

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Thanks Rockinmarty. I haven't posted it anywhere else but here. I did get the hinge problem fixed but had to take the support arms off. I'll take some pictures and show how I fixed it one of these days.

Thanks Chaserb31. Keep me updated on your build. I would like to follow it.

Scott
 
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