I bought a second-hand chest freezer from Gumtree. It's an old-school model with stainless steel lining the inside - it weighs a ton! There is space for 5 (possibly 6) 19L kegs, plus a shelf (above the compressor) for a few extras.

I added a 185mm wooden collar using DAR treated pine (19mm thickness) lined with 30mm polyfoam. This should protect the wood from any damp also improve the thermal insulation. However, I have absolutely zero experience in any of this, so who knows?!

I removed the lid from the base freezer and attached to collar, then sealed the collar to top of freezer unit using a "3-in-1" type silicone adhesive/sealant.

I drilled holes through the collar for the temperature probe (attached to the temperature controller), 4x beer taps on the front, and 2x ball lock gas posts on the side.

The gas post holes had to be double-drilled as they're not long enough to fit through the 19mm wood. The gas posts will be attached to a converter to a barb.

The plan is to use one gas post to feed a 4-way manifold connected to the beers at 10-12PSI. This will mean that everything's at the same pressure, but that's fine for now. The second post will be used at high (39-40PSI) pressure for carbonation.

Temperature controller is used to keep the temp to ~4C.

Primed and painted the collar with blackboard paint so I have somewhere to write what's on each tap.

Finishing touches

The finishing touches include adding taps to the front (I currently have 2) and making the whole bloody thing work!

I mounted the gas posts on the side, but couldn't get a good enough seal, even at ~10PSI, so I've had to remove them for now and trail a pipe in over the lid of the collar (very annoying). I think this means I'll trialling a different gas distribution method - probably something like the Duotight T-pieces and joiners connected to individual inline pressure regulators (as recommended by the kind fellows at Mars Brewing Supplies originally).

Anyway, despite the setback, I did manage to pour my first cold homebrew, which made things much better. It's not perfect, but it's pretty good, nonetheless.

What's left to do

  • Fix gas distribution
  • Add a drip tray
  • Paint a coat of arms on the front
  • Add kegs/taps as required
  • Add something to hold the CO2 bottle on the side
  • Attach the temp controller somewhere