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Not sure if that's on-topic, but I'm converting an old barrel into a tap system. Essentially a Keezer, except that I don't like something that still looks like an appliance - a barrel is just more authentic.

The problem: How do I cool the kegs inside? Since it's not needed to be permanently one (it's for a weekly or biweekly event), I could just dump in a bunch of ice every time I need to bring out the bar, but I'm lazy and that's boring :)

I know that there are heating spirals, but I wonder if there are cooling spirals or other flexible ways that I just plug into a power outlet and have it cool my two 5-gallon kegs?

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You could buy or build a jockey box. It's just a coil of stainless steel or copper immersed in ice with a spigot at one end a quick release at the other, all inside an insulated container.

It doesn't cool the keg down, but rather cools the beer as you're serving it.

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  • +1 primarily because of the car cat in the instructable! But the cool box is good too. – Mere Development Mar 24 '13 at 23:34
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Not really, unfortunately. Heating is a much easier mechanical process than cooling is, and as a result cooling applications tend to be more involved and more expensive.

You have two options:

1) You could get a glycol chiller of some sort. A glycol chiller is usually a standard refrigerator compressor used to circulate liquid. Works well, but it's expensive, bulky, and loud.

2) you could DIY some thermo electric plates (peltiers). These require a lot of air circulation and generally don't provide enough heat differential to keep beer cold in ambient room temperature.

Ice isn't terribly fun, but there aren't many better options for most applications.

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