Pour the perfect cold beer with great head EVERY time, just like a professional!
A lot of time and hard work goes into great homebrew, but all too often the presentation just doesn’t do it justice when your first pour comes out as froth!
Professional venues address this problem with glycol chilled font towers that cool the beer all the way to their fonts to ensure a consistent pour. You'll see these fonts dripping with cold condensation at your local pub but they're just far too expensive for most home brewers. This means after any significant time of inactivity, the beer in your lines warms up to room temperature and your next beer then pours with far too much head, even if your carbonation and beer line lengths are spot-on.
Lucky for home brewers, there is an affordable solution that works great for kegerators and keezers and we call it the Font Snake. The Font Snake works by circulating the cool air from inside your refrigerator up through a flexible hose into your font to keep your taps and beer lines cool. This achieves almost the same result as the professional glycol systems, allowing you to pour a great beer every time.
We designed the Font Snake with three main goals:
It had to be the best font cooler on the market in both appearance and performance.
It had to be the easiest and most convenient to install into common kegerators and keezers.
It had to be quiet, efficient and engineered with quality parts that will last.
We set out with these goals because unless we're making your life easier and giving you something of the utmost design and build quality, you might as well save some money and build a font cooler yourself!
In fact, nowadays there are a number of font coolers on the market that amount to nothing more than a cheap fan in a box that you could probably build yourself. They boast about the size of their fan but overlook most of the important (and less obvious) design considerations that make up a great font cooler like the Font Snake.
How hard will it be to route power to the Font Cooler?
Font coolers need power to operate their fan and this means you’re going to have to route a low voltage power cord inside your fridge somehow. Many keg fridges include a small opening for your CO2 gas line and it’s convenient to re-use this existing hole if your power cord can fit through it. The trouble is that in many cases, the barrel connectors that come with plug packs are too cumbersome to fit through the hole alongside an existing gas line. This is especially common with kegerators and it means you have to:
- Run the cable out through the door, which makes a bad seal, causes condensation and wastes power.
- Take apart your gas system to fit the power connector through the hole then re-plumb it afterwards, or
- Get out the power tools and drill a new hole in your fridge.
This is why we designed the Font Snake with an extra connector half way along the power cord. The small connector is much slimmer than the “barrel” connector at the end of the power lead and it easily fits through the “gas line” hole in the back of your kegerator so that installation is a breeze.
Is the power cable long enough?
Remember that your font cooler lives “inside” your fridge, so you need a cable that not only reaches “to” the fridge, but also has enough length to reach inside where the cooler is mounted. We found that standard power adaptors are usually a little lacking in the length department and wouldn’t be sufficient for most of our customers which is why the Font Snake includes an extra 1 meter extension lead that can extend your power cable up to 2.1 meters total, and if you don’t need it, you can just leave it out to reduce unnecessary cable clutter.
Will the noise keep me awake at night?
This is an important consideration because noise may be your single deciding factor in whether you leave your font cooler on 24/7, or only turn it on when you have guests over (and you’ll have to wait a few minutes for it to cool the beer lines). Most font coolers use a blower instead of a fan because it is cheaper to drill an enclosure with a single round air inlet hole than milling the complex "arch" shapes required for a fan grille, but the downside of blowers is that they "howl" and they are much louder than their axial/fan counterparts, sometimes as much as four times as loud for the same air flow rating!
The Font Snake is built with a carefully selected fan that offers great real world performance (we tested many!) while running relatively quietly. If you live in a small or quiet house you’ll really appreciate the Font Snake's quiet design and the extra cost that goes into it.
What is the CFM rating of the fan?
This is the most common question that we get asked about the Font Snake, but it’s a little misguided as I will explain. For a font cooler to function correctly it needs to circulate air from the fridge up into the cavity inside the font and keep replacing that volume of air frequently enough that it stays cool. So for example, if we have a font with an internal volume of 0.1 Cubic Feet (2.83 litres), and say we want to replace that air every minute to keep it cool, we would need a CFM rating of 0.1CFM which is about 100 times LESS than the output of the weakest 60mm fan. Now you can see why it's crazy that some manufacturers boast about the CFM ratings of their fans! For argument’s sake we could offer a 1,000 CFM fan and all it would do is make more noise, waste more power and your font wouldn't be any cooler!
With that said, the fan in the Font Snake is rated at 25CFM and we consider this to be complete overkill for the task, which is why the Font Snake also includes a variable speed controller so you can run it at a much lower power setting.
Will it make my fridge work overtime?
So we’ve mentioned how a font cooler's noise can be a serious concern and that using a powerful fan to generate excess airflow is also frivolous. Another thing to consider is that the bigger your fan and the harder it works, the more heat that gets generated inside your fridge. This extra heat makes your fridge work harder to keep your beer cool, yet again, using even more power! Just a few watts wasted inside your kegerator will cause it to consume many more watts to keep it cool and that's why it really pays to run your font cooler as efficiently as possible.
With a built in speed controller, the Font Snake allows you to set the exact amount of air flow that you want. We already have a fan that’s more than powerful enough to cool your font, but with the integrated speed controller, you now have the ability to scale it back to reduce the noise and power usage to an optimal level for your individual setup.
Is it easy to turn the font cooler off when it’s not in use?
This is a feature that you may have to live with to appreciate. At Digital Homebrew, we originally owned a font cooler with an inline switch (on the power cord) and we found we were always leaning over the fridge and fumbling around to find the power switch. That’s why we designed our Font Snakes with a built in switch so that if you want to toggle the power on or off, you can conveniently open the fridge door and find the switch in a consistent location. Eventually it becomes second nature.
Will it get in the way of my kegs?
With all of the kegs, beer and gas lines it can already get very cluttered inside a keg fridge. Adding a font cooler can make things even worse if the conduit and power wires can get snagged on your kegs when you swap them in and out. A lot of the font coolers on the market come in a generic box with no mounting flanges or accessories, leaving you to find a way to deal with the mess, and you may even find that it's more trouble than it's worth!
That's why the Font Snake was designed for a tidy installation that is quick and easy. It can be immediately installed using the included adhesive velcro pads, and the enclosure also includes mounting flanges (and screws) so that you can screw it in place more permanently (but please take careful consideration before drilling into your fridge). Because the Font Snake can be affixed to the top of your fridge, the conduit doesn't need to be excessively long which may otherwise result in lost air flow and cooling.
Is it built to last?
Due to condensation, temperature swings and the occasional spill, the inside of a fridge is a fairly harsh environment and that’s why it’s important to use a quality fan that is built to last. Sunon, Orion, Qualtek and Delta are all reputable fan manufacturers that stand by their products. Contrast this with the “no-name” fans used in competing font coolers and you can easily see why they cost less. If the fan’s manufacturer isn’t confident enough to print their own brand name on their product then it doesn’t build much confidence in the quality of the font cooler they're in!
Our Font Snakes are built with quality Orion fans and they have passed the test of time without a single reported failure from our customers in over two years. Our enclosures are professionally CNC machined in USA and screen printed with a coating that will never flake off. Our circuitry is mounted on a custom professionally designed printed circuit board and all assembly and testing is carried out in-house in Australia. You will not find this level of engineering detail or quality in any competing Font Cooler.
In fact, we are so confident in the design and build quality our Font Snakes that we offer DigitalHomebrew's "NO BS" lifetime warranty. We really want this Font Snake to serve you for a lifetime, and if there's anything inferior about it, we WANT to know! So if anything goes wrong, just send it back with proof of purchase and we will gladly refund your money, repair your Font Snake, or replace it with a new one!
Our Font Snake may not be the cheapest but it does represent amazing value, you simply won't find another font cooler with the same level of engineering and build quality.
1 x Font Snake
- 1 x 60cm length of sturdy conduit
2 x Short mounting screws sized to fit the flanges on the font snake
1 x Velco square for instant or temporary mounting
1 x Australian or US 12v Power Adapter, dependent on your delivery address that has been entered (if you'd prefer the other, just let us know and we'll make sure we ship you the adapter style of your preference).
1 x 1 metre power cord extension with connectors for easy installation (length with power pack is 2.1 metres)
||Orion 60mm 25CFM.
||Custom circuit operated with switched potentiometer.
||Flanges and screws (included), Adhesive Velcro (Included).
||60cm x 20mm O.D tough flexible electrical conduit.
||1.1m cord with micro connectors, plus a 1m extension (included).
||USA made ABS, CNC milled and screen printed.
||Built in-house (Australia)
||Tested in-house before shipping (Australia)
Here’s a video of the Font Snake’s installation process into a kegerator (Note the design has changed since we made this video but the installation is the same)