End Table Kegerator Hides the Tap when You’re Not Looking

What’s better than an ordinary end table? How about an end table that can serve you beer? [Sam] had this exact idea and used his skills to make it a reality. The first step of the build was to acquire an end table that was big enough to hold all of the components for a functional kegerator. This proved to be a bit tricky, but [Sam] got lucky and scored a proper end table from a garage sale for only $5.00.

Next, [Sam] used bathroom sealant to seal up all of the cracks in the end table. This step is important to keep the inside cold. Good insulation will keep the beer colder, while using less electricity. Next, a hole was cut into the top of the table for the draft tower.

The draft tower is mounted to a couple of drawer slides. This allows the tower to raise up and down, keeping it out of sight when you don’t want it. The tower raises and lowers using a simple pulley system. A thin, high strength rope is attached to the tower. The other end is attached to a spool and a small motor. The motor can wind or unwind the spool in order to raise and lower the tower.

The table houses an Arduino, which controls the motor via a homemade H bridge. The Arduino is hooked up to a temperature sensor and a small LCD screen. This way, the users can see how cold their beer will be before they drink it.

To actually keep the beer cold, [Sam] ripped apart a mini fridge. He moved the compressor and condenser coils to the new table. He had to bend the coils to fit, taking care not to kink them. Finally he threw in the small keg, co2 tank and regulator. The final product is a livingroom gem that provides beer on demand.

Demo video (which is going the wrong way) can be found after the break.

31 thoughts on “End Table Kegerator Hides the Tap when You’re Not Looking

  1. A great build!! All snide comments about the Bud handle aside, my chief concern here is that the electronic components are on a “Perma-breadboard” held vertically. With compressor vibration/temperature cycling etc. I’d question the durability of the arrangement – I’m guessing that gremlins will begin to creep into the operation as the breadboard contacts loosen/corrode/cycle.

    1. When you wrote, “Perma-breadboard” I had to watch the video up to that point, just to see if it was solderless prototyping board, or not. Sure enough it is! Yeah I mean solder a couple of connections on perfboard already. But maybe they’re not done with the project yet? They might be planning on some more functionality.

      Super high quality protoboard, like OK, or 3M is remarkably well behaved stuff though. Decent base metal, and gold plated contacts. I’m not even sure if the stuff is still made today, or not. I have some very old stock of it myself, that I paid a lot for a long time ago. I have a ton of the cheap imported crap too. So I know what you mean about protoboard fritzing out sometimes. The good, old, expensive stuff really didn’t.

      1. There have been lots of times where I threw together a jerry-rigged prototype, found it worked well enough as it was, and never bothered redoing it. If it works and it’s hidden away anyway, it moves waaaaaaay down the priority list.

  2. I would do this for Pepsi Throwback or maybe my own homebrew cola with real sugar. I’ll add both the homebrew cola and an end-table fountain to my list of things to do after a possible divorce. My kids will think I’m even cooler.

        1. Don’t buy a soda stream. The’re made in the occupied West Bank, and use expensive proprietary CO2 tanks. I made this setup, and it’s much cooler, more versitile, cheaper in the long run, and doesn’t support apartheid. http://www.popsci.com/diy/article/2012-06/how-make-your-own-home-carbonation-system

          If you really want cola, there’s the open cola recipe that is reverse engineered coke licensed under GPL. You should check out the Cube Cola page though, as it gets into the nitty gritty of emulsifying the essential oils, which turns out to be pretty tricky.

        2. Under reviews are the results of the opinion of others. The reviews I have read on the soda stream, soda streams fails as miserably ofdo the job as similar products in the past have failed. With consuming enough of it one would acclimate to the taste, but the name brand product is going to taste off when when consumed elsewhere.

          1. Hack the sodastream to use standard CO2 tanks and use the bag in box name brand syrups. Most of the bottlers that sell to restaurants will sell syrup to anyone. They don’t care who buys it, just that it gets sold. If you’re having a party, wedding, bar/bat Mitzvah, whatever, some soda bottlers have free rental on portable fountains, you just pay for the syrup and CO2.

      1. The problem is the claimed iPhone. After decades of the earpiece being at the top of a handset people are accustomed to that being the top, so they are going to assume that’s the top of the camera contained it the phone is the top of the phone, even the comparatively less expensive dumb phones got it correct, but what’s to be the world’s premier smart phone couldn’t. I’d further guess that those taking vertical video are predominately left handed, and rotating the phone puts the shutter button in an awkward position for them, particularly when they need to used their dominant hand to do other thing when recording video. Because I’m on a family member’s plan I have to follow their lead, so I do have a 5C in my pocket. While sliding a finger on the touch screen to scroll is fine photos is, but it’s a poor replacement when, tapping on a button or using a numeral keypad would get the job done faster. In one condition I have to push the home button & then do a slide on the screen to answer the phone, good grief. Sorry about the Apple rant, but I’m not going to give those recording vertical video too much,grief, when vertical video isn’t worth sweating.

  3. Cool concept.
    It looks like he needs to balance his keg lines though. It could also be from changing the angle of the lines when the tap is unused. The feed end and path should always be higher than the source end/path. This will cut down on foam. A drip tray under the tap should be in version 1.1.
    Perhaps an L shaped bracket with the pivot in the corner would be a better mechanism to alleviate issues than the current ‘elevator’ one.

  4. The beer can launcher, now the kegerator next to the recliner, what’s next? Instructions of how to make a connection to a sewer drain, along with instructions as to how tho insert an urinary catheter, so one doesn’t have to get up at all? ;)

  5. Why every single beer tap project on HaD uses fridge to cool down whole keg? it’s pretty useless… What if you replace keg? It’s like wait forever to get cool beer. Tap should cool down the beer as it’s flowing trough – no matter what is the temperature of keg…

    1. Perhaps a thin copper or stainless tube meandering between two high-power Peltiers?

      (Which may have a problem with cleaning. Maybe a better alternative would be a pair of copper blocks, one with milled meandering groove, the other just acting as a lid? Then the cleaning involves just unscrewing the lid and having full access, unlike into a bent tube. An alternative is using a thin plastic tube and consider it disposable.)

      Cooling the whole keg may be beneficial from the point of CO2/N2 solubility in beer at lower temperatures.

      1. Tap coolers exist. Often they have a tub filled with water and in the tub you have refrigeration lines and beer lines (normally stainless, sometimes polymer). The water freezes to ice which serves as buffer for the refrigeration.
        Forget peltier cooling for anything serious. Nobody wants to pay the electricity bill for such an inefficient system, compression cooling is already invented.

    2. You can do it that way, but a Jockey box built for high traffic will take up abut the same amount of space as a kegerator. And you still have to find an agreeable way to hide the keg(s).
      While beer carbonated with CO2 won’t skunk if you use it infrequently and the keg is warm the character of the beer will change. Unless every beer you buy/make is sterile filtered.
      Carbonation is not affected since you will have to calculate the pressure you want at serving temperature, which is the same regardless of if you cool the pour or the whole keg.

      1. Clarifying:
        “While beer carbonated with CO2 won’t skunk if you use it infrequently and the keg is warm the character of the beer will change. Unless every beer you buy/make is sterile filtered.”
        Beer carb’d with CO2 won’t skunk unless you abuse it in some way. However if there are live yeast in it they will be much more active at warm temperatures and change the character of the beer. Most Macro-brew is sterile filtered so this is not an issue, but if you drink micro-brew it’s something to be aware of.

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