We Build our Jockey Boxes a bit Differently

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I remember when I first heard about jockey boxes thinking that I wanted one, but then when I actually saw one I thought, "wait, what the hell is that?". What I had pictured in my head was very different from what I was seeing, and what I was seeing was not going to work for me so I decided to build what I thought a jockey box was in the first place.
Let me point out that although I have never seen one built like this, I am not saying that I am some kind of innovator here. I am pretty sure that as people read this that a great number of you are going to say, "Oh yeah, I've got one of those in the garage, built it in 1963". I am just documenting this for others that may not have considered such a build.
The upside to my version is portability, and a simple way to get your kegged beer to a party or picnic. The downside is the cost (if you have to buy everything it's around, oh i don't know add it up, $200 maybe?) and the relatively low amount of beer you can dispense. You probably also want to already have a setup at home for kegging, to carb your keg. Anyhow, on to the build. The first thing that you need is a cooler tall enough. I went with this monster:

Which can be found here, although it turns out I could have (should have) gone for the smaller version.
Make sure your cooler has a drain hole that doesn't leak (duh). I needed approx. 16" clearance for my keg, and both of these easily covered it. You will also need a nipple shank and a faucet:
I didn't spend a lot on mine, you can go as nice or as cheap as you like here. One drawback to a cheap faucet as opposed to a perlick is they don't tend to "snap" closed so you run the risk of some bozo not closing the tap and all your beer running out. A one inch spade bit cuts a clean hole:


5 feet of tubing and a quick disconnect:

and the heart of the system.

I used a standard 3 gallon keg, but there are options. here is a 2.5 gallon keg, and if you want to go real real small a 1.5 gallon keg that is only 11" tall!
If you went this small I could see two kegs side by side with a gas splitter in a lower profile rectangular cooler giving you two brews on tap. As for CO2, I used this paintball setup.
You MIGHT be able to squeeze a 2.5 lb/5 lb. CO2 tank into this cooler (MAYBE - measure carefully), but it would get pretty heavy quick and the idea is portability, remember? The paintball tanks can be filled for just a few dollars at a bunch of places like Dick's sporting goods does it around here. Here it is loaded with ice:

Works great!

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Since it's technically not a jockey box, we need to come up with a proper name. Keezer = Keg + Freezer. Kegerator = Keg and Refrigerator. Hmmmmmm. Keg + Igloo = Kegloo?
I use the same approach, except that I use a boat cooler and lay a 5 gallon keg on its side with the gas port up. Then I just slightly bend the liquid tube to the bottom. Perfect for weekends away from the kegerator.
Awesome build. I've been thinking about doing something nearly identical for a while now.
@crazyirishman34 No, it doesn't do anything "different", but it is a much more clean, convenient design and more readily portable. Plus picnic taps just suck. Not technically a jockey box, but in some respects better.
Anyone know of a taller than wide cooler like this one that has enough inside height to fit a standard corney? Even if I could find a cooler that had enough height inside to fit a pin lock that's slightly shorter than most ball locks, it would be a cool project...I really dont' want to plunk down cash for one of the smaller volume kegs...
There's a nice thread on portable keggerators. I built mine like the one on this link. Same igloo as above, just cut a hole out of the top to fit a 5 gallon corny. I mounted a bicycle water bottle holder to hold a paintball tank. Works like a charm.
Built one myself using this exact cooler, only I use two 3 gallon kegs in there. Just barely fits =)
Are you kidding me?!? I literally built one of these Friday for a homebrew festival this weekend. Almost exactly the same design, but I couldn't find any good how-to's online to go off of, so I just kind of winged it. Great writeup, and congrats on a sweet setup!
thanx guys, it was a lot of fun to build (and write up!). I actually have a 2.5 gallon and a 3 gallon keg and either fit. if I had it to do over again, I would figure out a cooler that would fit 2 (or 3) of those little 1.5 gallon kegs in it and have a mobile craft beer bar :)
edit: just reread you post thefost and saw you said BOTH kegs fit? damn you just made my day. I am going to have a two tap jerk-y box sweeeetttt
@WorkBoots09 I guess you (and the guy who wrote this article) missed this thread then...
I built mine based from that thread ages ago. It has two taps, same exact cooler too. I use the crap out of it. The wheels need to be replaced with rubber ones. And it is better than a bucket of ice because two kegs will stay cold for a week in mild outside temps. Lasts slightly less when it's really hot. The key for two kegs is getting the older spartan kegs that don't have rubber on the sides of the bottom.
@crazyirishman34 - the big thing my (similar) one does for me is that it keeps the whole thing insulated, and therefore requires significantly fewer ice additions.
see i told you i'm not an innovator! wish i had seen that a long time ago, respect to those guys!
@Swiller I saw that one and several others like it, but all I have are the 5 gallon cornies. I ended up tracing and cutting a 9" hole out of the top of my cooler, and the corny fits right inside with the top of the rubber handle flush with the top of the cooler. From there, my gas disconnect goes to my CO2 tank suspended from the cooler handle and my liquid line dives into the cooler via a small drilled hole in the cup holder to keep beer in the line cool between pours.
adventures in homebrew have 3 gallon pin lock kegs with loose handles or bottoms for $29.99
The first two I bought were in perfect shape -- no loose tops or bottoms. The last one I bought had a loose handle. I just pulled it off, cleaned the keg top and handle and used car trim adhesive to reattach it. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00063X38M/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o03_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
Good as new.
I did this with one of these jager ice chests.
It has two compartments so you can keep the regulator, gas bottle out of the water.
Using the same cooler I cut a hole in the top that nicely allows a 5 gallon keg to fit in the cooler. I did have to offset the tap to the side a little to allow clearance from the shank to the keg. Because the connections of the keg are now on the outside I just run it from my standard 5# CO2 tank.
I love the portability of the set-up and with 15# of ice, it easily keeps a keg cold for a long weekend.
I did pretty much the same build last year. You can actually fit 2 2.5 kegs in there, and a paintball CO2 canister.
its all in one contained box, easy to transport, and with it filled with ice, you get cold beer for at least 4 days.
thats a lot better than the JB's with a coil on the inside. I will build one soon, thanks
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