Concrete Beverage Cooler!

4,883

121

27

Introduction: Concrete Beverage Cooler!

Hi everyone!

In this Instructable, I'm going to show you how to create a concrete beverage cooler, perfect for outdoor parties! I have always wanted to make my cooler, especially since I love hosting outdoor parties... I decided to take the lockdown as a perfect opportunity to create my cooler!

Let's begin!!

Step 1: Supplies

Supplies:

  • 1 bag of Concrete
  • Rigid Foam rectangles
  • Small Plastic box
  • Construction glue
  • Spigot and pipe
  • Iron net
  • Heavy duty duct tape

Tools:

  • Trowel
  • Stick to mix concrete
  • Bucket to pour concrete
  • Exacto knife
  • Drill
  • Hammer

Step 2: Creating the Foam Mold

The first thing that you will have to do is to create a mold where you are going to pour the concrete in. In order to do this, you need to cut 5 pieces of foam into the measurements mentioned below. Once you have your 5 pieces, you will glue them together with construction glue in order to create a box (without a lid). Then, place toothpicks where the pieces of foam meet. Let your mold rest overnight so that the glue can dry. In the morning, seal any hole with tape.

Measurements:

  • 2 Sides- 10x16 in
  • 2 Sides- 10x23 in
  • Base- 16x23 in

Step 3: Securing the Foam Mold

This is the most important step! Make sure to wrap your rectangular mold with heavy-duty duct tape so that the weight of the concrete doesn't break it. You can even tie some strings around the perimeter of your mold to make it more secure.

Step 4: Add the Net

The next step is to place your iron net inside your foam mold. I used the net so that the concrete wouldn't break because it prevents air bubbles from forming. To do this, I cut a piece of iron net to fit the inside of the rectangular mold. Make sure to use scissors that are suitable for metal cutting.

*the size of the iron net does not matter, as long as it fits inside your mold.

Step 5: Drilling a Hole for Spigot

Once your net is placed, you will need to drill a hole so that you can place your spigot once your cooler has dried. To do this, I measured the circumference of the pipe and drilled a hole in the mold of that same circumference. Then, I repeated this step but this time I drilled the hole in the plastic box and iron net. Make sure that your three holes are in the same linear distance so that they align.

It is really important to cover your hole with tape so that the concrete does not go into it!

Step 6: Mix and Pour Concrete

In the concrete mix, make sure to follow the 1-2-3 ratio, being 1 part cement, 2 parts sand, 3 parts gravel, and 0.5 part water. Once your concrete mix has reached a smoothie-like consistency, you can start pouring it into the mold. Pour in the concrete until it reaches about 2 inches (or your desired base thickness). This step is only to create the base of your cooler.

Let the base cool overnight or for 12 hours.

Step 7: Place Plastic Box Inside Foam Mold

Once your concrete base is semi-dried, you can place your plastic box inside the mold. Make sure to center your box since it's where your drinks are going to be placed. I also added some weighted sandbags in the plastic box so it would not float once the rest of the concrete was poured.

Step 8: Pour Remaining Concrete

Once the plastic box is securely placed in the middle of the mold, you can continue to pour the concrete around the plastic box. Make sure that it doesn't go into the plastic box, it should go around it. To facilitate this step, I used a stick. In the end, smooth everything out with a small trowel to have clean edges.

Let the concrete cool for about 32-48 hours.

Step 9: Take Cooler Out of Foam Mold

Once you are sure that the concrete has completely dried, you can finally take the cooler out of the mold. Since the concrete was really heavy I gently broke away at the foam with the use of an Exacto knife and stick.

Step 10: Install the Spigot

Lastly, screw the spigot on and seal it with silicone or latex caulk. You can also glue it on with Liquid Nails Construction Adhesive. The spigot goes inside of the hole that you pre-measured!

Step 11: Enjoy Your Creation!

Get your favorite drinks, pour some ice in, and enjoy your creation! I hope that you recreate it and have as much fun as I did throughout the process!

Stone, Concrete, Cement Challenge

Second Prize in the
Stone, Concrete, Cement Challenge

Be the First to Share

    Recommendations

    • Make it Fly Challenge

      Make it Fly Challenge
    • Fruit and Veggies Speed Challenge

      Fruit and Veggies Speed Challenge
    • Maps Challenge

      Maps Challenge

    27 Comments

    0
    Rodh64
    Rodh64

    10 months ago

    Concrete cooler. Hmmm...we call that a wash sink.

    0
    TimF10
    TimF10

    Reply 10 months ago

    That gives me an idea. I have an old stainless double basin sink out back. It would be a cool idea to build a stand, insulate, and make a drink caddy.

    0
    voydcompras.com
    voydcompras.com

    Reply 10 months ago

    The more uses, the better! Great idea!

    0
    TimF10
    TimF10

    Reply 10 months ago

    The possibilities are endless. If you built it into a cart, you could mount a 5 gallon bucket on bottle with a pond/fountain pump and plumb it up to a faucet and use the other side as a hand washing station.

    0
    hob.delking
    hob.delking

    10 months ago

    Me gusta la playa, me gusta el cooler.

    0
    byhand.logo
    byhand.logo

    10 months ago

    By Hand loves this... this has the looks of an art statement !

    0
    chayniapenn
    chayniapenn

    10 months ago

    This is beyond awesome. Will look great in the garden when not cooling my beers

    0
    wmaxioma
    wmaxioma

    10 months ago

    Very interesting and unique. Thinking of multiple uses for this.

    0
    pinkpanda123
    pinkpanda123

    10 months ago

    I made one a while back and it works perfectly, keeps the ice cool for about 3 hrs... It does not look as great as yours though!!

    0
    pinkpanda123
    pinkpanda123

    Reply 10 months ago

    I also use it as a planter, you might want to try that!

    0
    soniasw2000
    soniasw2000

    10 months ago

    I am going to make one for my outdoor parties!

    0
    jkimball
    jkimball

    10 months ago

    I think this looks really cool- but won’t it work badly?

    Since it is big and heavy, you’ll leave it outside all the time, and all that thermal mass will soak up summertime heat.

    Then when you dump your ice in, you are fighting that thermal mass, and you’ll need a lot more ice than you would need otherwise.

    Additionally, lots of thermal changes is not great for concrete either.

    Like I said, it looks pretty cool but I think you might be fighting the physics here.

    0
    nextwiggin4
    nextwiggin4

    Reply 10 months ago

    Yeah, concrete is not an insulator, it's a thermal mass. It it's hot out and the concrete is cold, it'll take a long time for that heat to propagate through the concrete because it has to heat up the concrete first. But if the concrete is hot already, the ice water will absorb that heat, raising the temperature of the water bath. Making matters worse, the heat capacity of the concrete is lower than the water and the drinks. Meaning the concrete will be the largest contributor of heat to the ice bath (you'll have to cool the concrete first, essentially), but because there's so much concrete, it'll have a ton of heat to transfer.

    It's a neat instructable for making a drainable concrete box, but this is not a good cooler.