Building a Jockey Box

Looking for advice on building a jockey box.

I’m am leaning toward using a coil instead of a cold plate, because everything I’ve read says a coil works better. The catch is that I want to serve 4 products, fit inside a normal size cooler and not spend a totally outrageous amount of money.

I figure a 25 ft 3/8" OD coil will still work better than a cold plate and I can get four of them for less money–even looking on ebay. If I go with a 50 ft coil, I will need a huge cooler and four coils will run $240 plus shipping.

Am I heading in the right direction?

Is there any reason I should pick a 1/4" OD coil over 3/8"? I’m thinking the larger diameter tubing will be better given a length of 25-50" of coil (plus beer line).

So, does the silence mean that nobody has a jockey box?

If you plan on serving beer after beer after beer…then either the longer the length of tubing needs to be, or (and I’m guessing) the larger diameter the tubing needs to be. You don’t want to be pouring warm(er) beer if the jockey box can’t keep up with the demand.

I’ve got a box with two 120’ stainless 3/8" ID tubing. Never ever had a problem with pouring warm beer.

I’d stick to 3/8" if you want to be certain that every beer is as cold as the last one poured.

I have a 4 tap one and I used 1/4 tubing 50’ for each. It is in a 48qt cooler. I tightened the coils around a fire extinguisher so all would fit. You would probably need a bit less pressure to push beer through the larger tubing, probably not much of a difference.

Thanks. I actually went with a 4 circuit cold plate. Started building last night.

Had a somewhat difficult time figuring out what the ID of the stainless tubing was inside the mass of aluminum, but eventually got in touch with the manufacturer who confirmed it’s 5/16 OD, so approximately 1/4" ID. Otherwise, all seems to be going well so far. Of course, the real test will be when I fire it up for the first time.

I thought I would share the tutorial I put together after building my jockey box.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f252/cold-p ... ep-518682/

Very nice!