Keezer – Taps

My taps arrived from the US yesterday and so it was time to bung them in the lid!

I ordered 6″ stainless steel shanks to go through the double wall collar of the lid.  This would mean that I would need to drill an appropriate sized hole in either side of the collar.  I marked the drill hole on the front, then using a set square I transferred this to the bottom edge, then to the inner edge and then measured it up the same distance to get what I hoped would be a mark on the inner wall directly opposite the front.

First I drilled a pilot hole in the front and back walls, before drilling the full size hole in the outer wall with a spade bit.  Due to difficulties drilling the inner wall from inside I simply got it started from the inside so that there would be a recess to prevent splitting before then drilling it through from the front via the front hole.  This worked rather well, with two of the three shanks lining up perfectly!

The middle shank did not, however – it was off by about 5mm.  In order to get it to sit square I needed to elongate the hole in the inner wall.  I figured the quick and easy way to do this was using a sanding bit in the Dremel.  This almost went horribly wrong.

The heat from the sanding friction caused the wood to smoke.  An ember had been created and was now buried in the inaccessible depths of my double wall collar.  Quite a bit of smoke was coming out of it.  This is not good!  Left unresolved the lid will catch fire.

Luckily I’m into kegging so my solution was to tape up all the holes and flood the entire collar with CO2 from my cylinder.  I taped up the last hole where the CO2 was being injected and then carried the lid out to the back garden, wrapped it in a tarpaulin and left it there over night to its fate.  If it burned, at least it wouldn’t burn my garage down!

Anyway, it all turned out fine so here’s some photos…

Above you can see the shanks installed through the collar.  I was pleased with the length of the shanks – they needed to be pretty long, not only for the depth of the double-wall collar but also some nuts still need to go on for the beer lines.

Next we have a shot of the taps.  I selected Perlick 545’s which are forward sealing taps and feature a flow control adjuster on the side.  This will allow short beer lines in the keezer and make foaming issues easier to deal with (I hope!)  I spaced the taps so that they would be a shank-flange-width between each shank flange.  Speaking of which, I don’t really like the look of the black plastic flanges.

And lastly, here’s what it all looks like to date.  The drip tray needs to be affixed and all the wood needs a final sand before being varnished.

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