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Thread: Refrigeration ideas..........?

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    Member Akgramps's Avatar
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    Default Refrigeration ideas..........?

    Looking for ideas on what you guys are using for keeping things cold on a 24 foot boat..........?

    I have been working on a Glasply and in the process of redoing the inside.....and the outside.

    It had a ice box under the seat, its in rough shape and considering a 12 volt, 2-3 cubic foot refer/freezer, maybe a Isotherm or Norcold.......I have been looking at these drawer style units, anyone have/use one of these.....?

    ISOTHERM
    Drawer 65 Drawer-Style Refrigerator

    It seems more convenient than one of these...


    ISOTHERM
    Isotherm Cruise Refrigerators




    Also about twice the cost..........?

    Maybe just a cooler.........?
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
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    Member IceKing02's Avatar
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    How long do you intend upon being away from civilization? I'd much rather have more interior space than the refrigerator.

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    Member Akgramps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceKing02 View Post
    How long do you intend upon being away from civilization? I'd much rather have more interior space than the refrigerator.
    Most likely 3-4 days at a time.............
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
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    Member smtdvm's Avatar
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    I've had a couple of the Norcolds and they have worked quite well but they are just too small. Good for a few beverages or an overnighter. I think I'd rather have the space.

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    Moderator stid2677's Avatar
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    My Jeti cooler will hold ice for 7 days or more. There are several coolers now made the same way that may be cheaper.
    "I refuse to let the things I can't do stop me from doing the things I can"
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  6. #6

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    Without running your engine continuously, I don't see how a small refer unit could chill down fish, then hold it at temp. Watched guys try it with boats larger than yours and lots bigger refer units. The ones that made it work installed auxilliary generators to go with their bigger refer units.

    A decent refer man (there are lots in the fishing industry) could take the volume of your ice box, the thickness of your insulation, and the load rate (how fast you'd be putting fish into the box), and give you a minimum refer size in a few minutes of penciling. I think you'll be shocked by what you need to do the job.

    Even on bigger boats, most guys do just fine with a good insulated tote. The ice will last even longer if you have a tub on deck for ice and water to pre-chill the fish before putting them in the box with your store of ice. How you ice the fish will make a huge diff. Learn all you can about belly icing and layering. An old time halibut head can fill you in.

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    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrownBear View Post
    Without running your engine continuously, I don't see how a small refer unit could chill down fish, then hold it at temp. Watched guys try it with boats larger than yours and lots bigger refer units. The ones that made it work installed auxilliary generators to go with their bigger refer units.

    A decent refer man (there are lots in the fishing industry) could take the volume of your ice box, the thickness of your insulation, and the load rate (how fast you'd be putting fish into the box), and give you a minimum refer size in a few minutes of penciling. I think you'll be shocked by what you need to do the job.

    Even on bigger boats, most guys do just fine with a good insulated tote. The ice will last even longer if you have a tub on deck for ice and water to pre-chill the fish before putting them in the box with your store of ice. How you ice the fish will make a huge diff. Learn all you can about belly icing and layering. An old time halibut head can fill you in.
    Agreed, pre-chill if possible, have a good oversized cooler on deck, and lots of glacier ice.
    We have had stuff freeze in the bottom of the cooler after a few days on glacier ice. Keep draining off the ice melt in the bottom and lay something in the bottom of the cooler to keep your contents an inch off the bottom and out of the slush you are draining daily.
    No issues.
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    Member Akgramps's Avatar
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    Yes, the boat is definitely too small for a refer big enough to freeze the catch, we are planing to have a cooler on a swimstep for that. Presume I can keep fillets on ice for a day or two........? Dont know about shrimp........?

    The refer in the cabin would be for groceries.....The cockpit is small and a cooler on the deck will constantly be in the way.

    Maybe I need to reevaluate how we plan to use this boat, the goal was to be able to stay out for a few days....then back to Valdez, freeze what needs to be frozen, shower up, resupply and back out....

    Is that not realistic.....?
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
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    Moderator stid2677's Avatar
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    I run back and forth for extended trips from Valdez, what I do is take my fillets and shrimp to EZ freeze and pick it up on my way home. Just a idea, works for me. Plus no fish processing once I get home.
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  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Akgramps View Post
    Presume I can keep fillets on ice for a day or two........
    Bag your fillets in bags that aren't too thick, then drop them into the water/ice bath to cool them. When you move them to an ice tote, they'll keep for days and days. A well-insulated cooler of ice, along with a tub/cooler with ice and water for prechilling will do amazingly well. Why buy the trouble and expense of a refer unit that will be marginal at very best (and biggest)?

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    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Akgramps View Post
    Yes, the boat is definitely too small for a refer big enough to freeze the catch, we are planing to have a cooler on a swimstep for that. Presume I can keep fillets on ice for a day or two........? Dont know about shrimp........?

    The refer in the cabin would be for groceries.....The cockpit is small and a cooler on the deck will constantly be in the way.

    Maybe I need to reevaluate how we plan to use this boat, the goal was to be able to stay out for a few days....then back to Valdez, freeze what needs to be frozen, shower up, resupply and back out....

    Is that not realistic.....?
    You are on the right track. We keep fish on ice for a few days, same for the shrimp.
    We use two different coolers. One small one for food, that is constantly being opened. The large one on the deck is for fish and typically is opened once or twice a day to add ice and game.
    Prechill your product in a slushy bath of glacier water in a bucket before you add it to the cooler, you are not shocking the cooler with 50* product and it will freeze some of the contenets on the bottom with crushed glacial ice.
    BK

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    Member JR2's Avatar
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    I have your example of the lower reefer on my boat, I only have it plugged in and running when the motors are running and it keeps the food in there cold enough. A couple of tricks to keep it working good, first I plug it in at home and get it cold on the 120 power. I also try to put something large and frozen in there, a big pile of spaghetti, a few packages of frozen hot dogs, three or four packs of frozen herring or best yet a frozen half gallon milk carton full or water. I have also just put a few frozen gel packs into it to help during the times its not turned on.

    We also usually keep a big cooler on the back deck full of glacier ice and keep our extra food and all our fish/shrimp in it. Its a 96 qt cooler and I usually fill it about 2/3 full of big chunks of ice and then slide the fish and stuff around it. I have also used a soft side cooler inside that cooler to hold fish and shrimp, just keeps them from getting squashed if the ice shifts during rough seas. I have been thinking about insulating one of my fish holds enough to use it as a cooler and keeping two kill bags in there, one for fish/shrimp and one for human food.

    Good luck.
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    Member spoiled one's Avatar
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    I have considered the same thing AKgramps. My initial concern was the battery draw. My neighbor had an upright isotherm in his SeaSport that he sold this spring. We "prechilled" it using AC power and then switched over to DC. It ran off the two 6 volt GC 2s for a day and a half before they dropped to 12.2 volts (50%). I was impressed. I will be adding one during one of the upcoming seasons. I will probably go for a windlass first, though. The armstrong method sure is getting old.
    Spending my kids' inheritance with them, one adventure at a time.

  14. #14

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    I built my helm seat box to accommodate one of those "cube" ice chests. Mine doesn't have wheels so I don't lose the extra volume where they would be. I pre-chill the cooler and then use Techni Ice sheets I got @ Amazon.com. Good for about 3 days. The seat box is just wide enough to store my cutting boards and knives next to the cooler. Pretty low end but works well enough for me.

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    Member Akgramps's Avatar
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    So it appears that the big issue w/ a 12 Volt unit is battery draw down.........?
    I was hoping to use LED lights and keep the use low, was thinking two 12V AGM type batteries would do the trick.
    These small refers typically use 2.5 to 5 amps, depending on the size, and would think they would run 50% of the time.......?

    From those that have them is a 50% run time a reasonable guess..........?

    OK, I guess I answered my own question, just looked it up and a quality group 34 battery has a 10 hour AH capacity of 62 amps and 20 hour capacity of 68 AH.

    So it looks like if I get one of these it better be a small one....or get bigger boat batteries, I am not planning on a packing a generator......
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
    TR

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    Member IceKing02's Avatar
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    Maybe we're all looking at this question the wrong way?!?

    On the War Horse we run a little fridge, heater, lights and use our Electradyne the entire weekend. Between the run out (Thursday) and back(Sunday), plus some running around Friday and Saturday for and hour or two we seem to have no problems keeping our batteries charged up all weekend. We have two group 34 house batteries and two group 34 starting batteries...and a big alternator on the Volvo. If you have a big enough battery bank and a high charging rate then I'd think you'll be okay for a couple of days. We'll keep a 94qt cooler on deck for ice, extra food/drink, and fillet storage.

    I'd still gladly trade the fridge for the extra space...HOWEVER: The First Mate just chimed in on this question and relates that a reefer "inside the boat is only necessary if you want your "First Mate" to accompany you on these trips!" I guess this trumps all of our armchair engineering...

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    Member Akgramps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceKing02 View Post
    Maybe we're all looking at this question the wrong way?!?]




    [ The First Mate just chimed in on this question and relates that a reefer "inside the boat is only necessary if you want your "First Mate" to accompany you on these trips!" I guess this trumps all of our armchair engineering...

    Maybe it was the way I asked, but seem to be on the right track now....

    Yeah, My admiral seems to think the "Groceries" dont belong in the same cooler with the bait and the catch of the day......kinda see her point.....
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
    TR

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Akgramps View Post
    So it looks like if I get one of these it better be a small one....or get bigger boat batteries, I am not planning on a packing a generator......
    A Yamaha 1000 generator would weigh less than 2 extra AGM batteries plus it can also charge the house batteries if needed. Set it on the swim step and it can run all night chilling the fridge for about a quart of gas.

  19. #19

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    Would a camper fridge work? They can use 12 volt dc, 120 volt ac, or propane.

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    Member Akgramps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Money Pit View Post
    A Yamaha 1000 generator would weigh less than 2 extra AGM batteries plus it can also charge the house batteries if needed. Set it on the swim step and it can run all night chilling the fridge for about a quart of gas.
    Interesting point, a 1000 watt yammie is ~ 28 pounds, still need some batteries........

    I was hoping to have one starting battery and one house battery........now maybe two house batteries, 2 group 34 batteries is 100 pounds, 2 group 31's 154 pounds........

    The generator needs to be stowed somewhere when not in use, I wouldn't leave it on the swim step.......its light, it could stash under the table when underway..........?
    I was really hoping not to pack a generator, the Honda kicker has a alternator, actually its equivalent to one of these small gen sets, I figured that would be my backup if I ever ended up in a dead battery situation.......But wouldn't want to leave it run all night to run a fridge............
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
    TR

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