The Keg Cooler

We are traveling to Seattle this weekend and will be there till the 21st and we will be taking a unique piece of luggage.  The Keg Cooler.

I wanted to be able to transport my own kegs (or kegs I rent from brewers) to and from Washington and other parts of Idaho we visit but had no way to keep them cool during transport.  So, I came up with the idea of The Keg Cooler.  I’ve spoken to a number of Brewers in Seattle over the last couple years and they all sell kegs to the public, or will fill my own personal keg.  The kegs I’m talking about are five gallon kegs, also known as Cornelious Kegs, or just simply “Corny” Kegs.  I own four myself that I take to various brewers here in Boise who will fill it for me with whatever brew I’d like or fill with my own homebrew.  Other brewers will not fill my own, but will rent me their keg with a refundable deposit.

My hope is that with this Keg Cooler, I will be able to purchase my favorite brews in Seattle and bring them back here to Boise to enjoy.  The first one I plan to bring back next week is The Pike’s Brewery Company’s Scotch Ale, “Kilt Lifter.”

My plan is to pick up the keg on the way out of town and toss in some ice to keep it cool for the trip home.  Stay tuned for the results.  In the mean time, here’s how it was built.

I started with a simple 3/4″ wood interior wall, then built an exterior wall which left a gap in between for the insulation.

keg coolerkeg cooler

Once I had the walls built, I flipped it over to build the bottom.  I built a short 2″ wall, then filled it in with the insulation.  I used styrofoam for my insulation.  Once the insulation was in, I sealed it up with another 3/4″ piece of wood to finish off the bottom.

keg coolerkeg cooler

Then I flipped it back over and filled in the walls for the sides.

keg cooler

Now it was on to the liner.  I used a material used in the construction of bathtubs and shower surrounds.  I cut it to size so it had minimal seams and glued it into place inside the cooler.


I had some issues with the glue holding the liner in.  It seemed to form some air pockets in the bottom, as you can see in the photo on the left.  The sides took it well.  I glued it all in over a period of three days doing the bottom, then the sides, then the ends.  After the liner was in I put on the seal around the top.  Finally, I used a bit of caulking to make sure the cut seams in the liner were water tight from leaks.  I’m just going to use a couple cargo straps to latch the top onto the keg and seal it up all tight for transport.


And the final completed project complete with my corny keg.

finished cooler

I’ll toss in a thermometer for the trip home with the keg and see how well it holds its temperature.  There is about 1″ of space around the top and bottom of the keg.  I was trying to keep a tight fit to limit air space inside the cooler.

It may be an interesting trip back next week.  But it will be very rewarding when I pour my first glass of The Pike’s Scotch Ale!


One Response to “The Keg Cooler”

  1. trexmom Says:

    Rich, you do amazing work. Very impressive! Thanks for stopping over last night. It was great to see you. Have a great trip and we’ll see you when you get back! Say hi to the folks over there.


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