View original topic: Draft beer in a Vanagon! Page: 1, 2  Next
jkidd152 Sat Aug 10, 2013 8:28 pm

This was my inspiration, to share my home brewed draft beer right from my van!

Samba legend BellePlaine from the link above is a genius! What I am showing you here is a light, light version of his set up. Although I would have liked to follow his ultimate set-up, I was after something less permanent.

However, I have already made a couple major mods that are necessary for the home brew dream to be a reality.

First is the closet door mod.

Now a 5 gallon keg in a bucket of ice will fit!

Although not pictured, a little CO2 tank and regulator fit back there too.

A beer line runs from the back closet...

...through the cabinetry to a 2" shank attached to the metal plate portion of the fridge vent.

I "borrow" a tap from my kegerator

Remove the cover and bam! We are in business!

Bob likes it:

So does Mark:

When it's all over, the tap screws off and the cover goes back on. Here you can see the shank underneath the cover:

Bet you can't see it from here though!

Just in time for MogFest!

markz2004 Sat Aug 10, 2013 8:49 pm

Very fun mod and the beer was seriously good beer. That's why bob and I look so serious. :lol: :lol:

Altoona Sat Aug 10, 2013 8:51 pm

Oh, my.

That sir, is by far, the most inspirational mod I have seen in a long time. Kudos.

singler3360 Sat Aug 10, 2013 9:05 pm

This is truly an inspiration. The greatest VW GTG mod ever.

kirsplat Sat Aug 10, 2013 9:14 pm

mod of the year nominee =D>

you'd have to let the keg settle for a while before tapping it, right?

(edited my distasteful comment)

GWTWTLW Sat Aug 10, 2013 9:15 pm

Can't wait for the rollover red and syncro stout at mogfest next weekend!

slobrewer Sun Aug 11, 2013 12:08 am

Very nice. As a fellow homebrewer I've been thinking of how to set up draft beer in my van too. I really like the setup you've got since I find little use for the wardrobe and I've already pulled the Dometic. That said, 5 gallons of beer is generally more than I need for all but the biggest homebrew fests so I'm thinking of doing something similar but instead using 2.5 gallon kegs.

Hmmm, this has gotten the wheels spinning and I'm going to have to pull something together before our club trip next weekend...

VanWilder Sun Aug 11, 2013 12:39 am

Senor Kidd, you have out done yourself. That is shaweeet. :)

I second, the"Mod of the Year".

chojinchef Sun Aug 11, 2013 5:37 am

Very, very nice mod.

Almost makes me wish I did not get rid of my external vent.

The ingenuity of the VW folk never ceases to amaze me.


Steelhead Sun Aug 11, 2013 7:51 am

Thanks a lot...30 years in vanagons and this is first time I've wanted a rear cabinet.

One more islander... Sun Aug 11, 2013 8:05 am

slobrewer wrote: Very nice....I'm thinking of doing something similar but instead using 2.5 gallon kegs....
So...with brain-cogs turning and a seriously underutilized stock fridge...would a 2.5 gallon keg fit into the fridge compartment if the fridge were removed?

slobrewer Sun Aug 11, 2013 10:53 am

One more islander... wrote:
So...with brain-cogs turning and a seriously underutilized stock fridge...would a 2.5 gallon keg fit into the fridge compartment if the fridge were removed?

Yes, I confirmed that last night. A 2 1/2 gallon keg fits in a 6 1/2 gallon fermentation bucket (the standard homebrew variety) with the lid on. That whole bucket fits just fine under the shelf if you remove the Dometic fridge. Even better, a 1 .75 gallon keg fits in a standard 5 gallon bucket leaving you even more space. I'm going to whip up something today and post some pictures.

The benefit to going this route is that you can keep your draft lines coiled up in the bucket with ice and minimize the foaming from warm lines running along the inside of the van.

I do love the idea of that fridge door mounted to the wardrobe so that the space is more accessible, though.

SteelB12 Sun Aug 11, 2013 12:31 pm

Holy crap, that is awesome.

jkidd152 Sun Aug 11, 2013 1:05 pm

Guys, thanks so much for the compliments!
And I love the ideas that are "flowing" now. :lol:

I really haven't any foaming or settling issues. The first time I put in action, my biggest concern was the heat from the engine was melting my ice! It turned out to not be a problem, though.

That said, a smaller keg is a great idea! It is actually not that easy to lift a full 5 gallon keg in a bucket of ice into the rear cabinet.

Are you all familiar with a jockey box?

Beer line runs into the back of cooler, through a stainless steel coil sitting on ice. Cold beer runs out!

Check out this cooler...

It fits in here....because the shelf was removed (not my doing) :roll:

I would then have a short line out to my outside tap with this idea.

Just another way to do it.
Thanks again y'all!

GWTWTLW Sun Aug 11, 2013 3:06 pm

We certainly can't have warm beer or foam at mogfest...

gregaz Sun Aug 11, 2013 5:07 pm

Please come to the AZ Meet Up in Flagstaff next weekend. Pretty please?

1621 Sun Aug 11, 2013 7:36 pm

All I can say is... =D> =D> =D>

Beautiful work, and I'm happy to see the ideas being generated. John, please design the fridge-elimination-beer-tap kit and I'll buy one for every cabinet I have. I enjoyed your beer as well, you are truly a craftsman in all aspects.

Racerrojo Sun Aug 11, 2013 9:22 pm

you Sr. are my new hero! 8)

syncromike Sun Aug 11, 2013 9:43 pm

Steelhead wrote: Thanks a lot...30 years in vanagons and this is first time I've wanted a rear cabinet.
LOL - Me too!

slobrewer Sun Aug 11, 2013 9:50 pm

jkidd152 wrote:

Nice! That could be the perfect spot for a full five gallon keg vertically.

I took the plunge and started drilling everything tonight. I've got the shank and line all plumbed in behind the vent cover. I rigged up a 1.75 gallon keg ( in a 5 gallon bucket with foam insulation and it looks really nice. There's still room for a small CO2 setup and plenty of ice and the whole thing will be self contained. If I want to run a 2.5 gallon keg I can easily do so in a 6.5 gallon bucket, which also fits in the cabinet.

I'll post a bunch of pictures later this week when I go camping up in San Simeon with my homebrew club.

Good to hear you're not getting foaming. A long enough 3/16" ID line will prevent most foaming issues but some times hot lines can be an issue. There's minimal actual beer in a 3/16" line so it doesn't take long to clear it through.

I'm not a fan of jockey boxes with the coils. They certainly can work but I find I get more consistent results just keeping the beer cold in the first place.[/url]

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