Jeremy Bouton works in the Shipping & Receiving Department here at KegWorks. He’s the guy we call whenever we have a problem in the office or the warehouse – a sort of company handyman, if you will. He knows a little (or a lot) about pretty much everything.
He’s a project guy too. Not the kind that starts something and leaves it 10% unfinished. When he says he’s going to do something, he sees it out to the end.
His latest project is pretty amazing – unlike anything I’ve ever seen. We didn’t really hear much about it at the office, until we peeked out from the break room one day and saw him installing the final components on the bad boy seen above.
Jeremy drives an ’09 Chevy Avalanche LS, and like everything else he owns, he takes a lot of pride in it. In addition to a grill guard, a modified exhaust system, custom 18″ wheels, and much much more, Jeremy now has a mobile draft beer dispensing system installed on his truck, which he calls the “Avalanche Kegerator” or the “Avalancherator.”
I realize this is a lot to take in, so let’s start from the beginning.
It all started with Jeremy’s desire to utilize the self-draining saddle bag storage compartments located above the rear wheel wells on his truck.
So one day, as he was packing a stainless steel coil for a customer in the warehouse, he realized he was able to diagonalize it, “kind of like a slinky,” he says, to fit in a smaller box. He realized then and there that he’d be able to fit the same stainless steel coils in the saddle bag compartment of his truck and install a mobile kegerator.
To the best of his knowledge, this has never been done before, and thus, there were no YouTube tutorials or how-to guides on the internet. He was on his own. But he was confident he could do it.
The whole process took him a total of about 3½ hours. 1½ for the actual nutting and bolting, and about 2 hours worth of research. He figures he spent somewhere between $500-$600, but he went with a pretty custom system. For someone to start from scratch with the bare essentials, he estimates they’re looking at somewhere between $400-$500.
Jeremy frequently uses the kegerator when camping, tailgating, or just to turn some heads, which he always does. He says he’ll often run into the gas station while camping with his family, and since he’s only stopping in, he’ll leave the system hooked up. He’s in the store for no more than five minutes, and by the time he comes out, there’s a swarm of guys grouped around the truck, jaws dropped with questions flooding to the forefront.
Jeremy’s added a number of special touches, including a Guinness spill mat that protects the car from dripping alcohol, as well as the keys, belt buckles, or buttons of anyone leaning up against the car for a pour. He also has some lights that run up the tower, so people can see what they’re pouring at night.
Pretty damn rad, huh? We’re really proud to say that this is the boozy brainchild of one of our own. Congrats to Jeremy on a job well done, and we look forward to more of these crazy awesome creations.
For those of you interested in trying this at home (which we definitely suggest) here’s a list of tools and parts along with the instructions you’ll need to complete the Avalanche Kegerator.
Parts Available at KegWorks
- 5 lb Aluminum CO2 Air Tank
- Premium Double Gauge CO2 Regulator
- Regulator Gauge Metal Wire Cage
- 2 Gauge Protectors
- Kleen-Plug Draft Beer Faucet Cap & Brush
- Air Line Jumper 5′ with Screw Clamps
- Jockey Box Beer Line Jumper 5′ with Connectors
- Stainless Steel US Sankey Coupler
- 3″ Cooler Coupling with Washers
- Stainless Steel Coil for Jockey Box – 50′ Length
- Duplex Coupling for Beer Line Cleaning Kit
- Quick Disconnect – Male
- Quick Disconnect – Female
- Single Tap Chrome Axis Draft Beer Kegerator Tower (What Jeremy Used)
- Self-Closing Polished Chrome Draft Beer Faucet with Brass Lever
- Tap Handle
- Draft Beer Hose and Tube Cutter
- Gas Cylinder Wall Bracket
Parts Not Available at KegWorks
- 15-Gallon Feed Bucket (big enough to fit a quarter short keg)
- Lighting for Night Pouring (battery operated)
- Disk Sink Hole Cover (for plugging when not in use)
- Quarter Keg of Your Favorite Beer
Assembling Your Mobile Kegerator
1. Hook the regulator to the 5 lb CO2 tank.
- Air line out, hooked into the coupler.
2. Place the keg inside a 15-gallon feed bucket (Jeremy got his from Tractor Supply).
- He used the feed bucket as opposed to a party bucket for a number of reasons. Firstly, “it just looks cool, and the thing doesn’t move” he says. Secondly, it has enough room for ice, which he puts on top for a trickle down cooling effect. Lastly, he’s a family man, and he likes to keep cold sodas and waters in there for the kids as well – they fit perfectly around the keg.
3. Insert the coupler, half-turned (clockwise) into the keg.
4. Insert 5′ jockey box beer line out from coupler and into 3″ cooler coupling (or shank).
5. Drill hole into the saddle bag using a 1′ hole saw or lockset bit.
- Be sure the hole is 1″ below the drip channel.
- You’ll go through three layers on the Avalanche – plastic, metal, plastic. Do your preliminary research to be sure you don’t drill through any electrical wiring.
6. Place the 3″ coupling inside the cooler compartment.
7. Diagonalize the 50′ stainless steel coil, as seen in the picture below, and attach to the opposite end of the 3″ coupling.
8. The opposite end of the coil goes into the duplex coupling.
9. On the single tap tower, there is 5′ of beer line attached. Cut that beer line about halfway up with a draft beer hose and tube cutter.
10. Hook the female end of the quick disconnect to the piece of the hose that you cut off.
- Secure the other end of that piece to the opposite end of the duplex coupling.
11. Hook the male disconnect to the remaining piece of beer line hanging from the tower (the piece that was left after the cut in step #9).
12. Drill a second 1″ hole through the lid of the saddle bag compartment.
- When drilling the hole, watch for the locking mechanism that secures the saddle bag.
13. Take the tower and feed the beer line (male quick disconnect first) through the hole on the lid.
14. Now your setup is nearly complete. Before tightening the tower fully, be sure your faucet is in the closed position, the air is off, and the coupler is disengaged.
15. Attach the washer and nut that came with the shank up to the male quick disconnect and finger tighten it inside the saddle bag compartment.
16. Calibrate your regulator at a higher PSI, so as to push the beer through 50′ of coil line.
- The suggested PSI for the jockey box setup is anywhere between 30-40, but you’ll need to experiment. It’s not an exact science.
17. Position the tower as you want it. Snug firmly without over-tightening.
18. Once you’re fully connected, engage the coupler, turn on the air, dial in your regulator, and pour your first draft beer out of your brand new mobile kegerator!