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Ice Box

Discussions about Food Storage
Danux
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Re: Ice Box

Postby Danux » Mon Feb 15, 2016 5:44 pm

Perfesser wrote:For the last few days I've had to do without a working fridge.
I've been cycling 3 x 2l pop bottles outside to freeze and taking the 3 from outside into the fridge. It's kept it passably cold when done twice a day.


I had a pal do the same with four large milk containers a few winters ago. It worked, but his wife was unimpressed by the effort needed to maintain it, and the lost space on the top shelf. I think a chest-style insulated box, with entry from the top, is necessary if someone were to do this long term. Too much precious cool air leaving the box with a swinging door.

It's always kinda gotten under my skin, knowing that, in winter, we use so much energy to heat our living space, then use even more energy to cool down the fridge/freezer. I guess ultimately what we're doing is heating with electricity, but it always seemed to me that the more efficient approach would be do to use the outdoor temperatures to refridgerate. As a former coworker pointed out, most people like the convenience of the electric fridge, it's basically effortless.

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Re: Ice Box

Postby Perfesser » Mon Feb 15, 2016 5:59 pm

"it's basically effortless"
My hydro bill is equal to about 1 days pay or or 5% of my income(@20 working days per month)at certain times of the year - anything but effortless. OK - on average maybe only 3%
Swapping out frozen jugs takes 5 free minutes.
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Danux
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Re: Ice Box

Postby Danux » Mon Feb 15, 2016 6:16 pm

peppercorn wrote:That didn't work out, I had the idea to get a full size propane fridge , and instead of using propane I would make it so it would run direct of a solar panel, but the propane fridge turned out to be a small one and I am not going to the trouble for a small one, I will have to keep my eyes out for a full size used one on kijiji. The perfect fridge, no moving parts, and no batteries or inverter needed to run it. Project for another day...


I also really like idea of using "absorption cooling", although I have no direct experience with them, yet. My thought has been to use a solar concentrator as the heat source, or even geothermal if you can go deep enough for a good, stable temperature. About the only thing I dislike about them is that they are dependent on a commercial supply of refridgerant & hydrogen, if you get a leak. This is fine if the supply chain is still functioning, but not so good if you need it and can't get it. Hydrogen can be made readily enough with electricity, copper, & water - and I don't think much hydrogen is needed for personal-sized systems - but I believe making a refridgerant like ammonia takes quite a bit more effort.

What I'd really like to see is an insulator that allows me to "capture" a -40 day, and contain it. I am familiar with vacuum insulating, and aergel, but I don't think either of these is capable of blocking thermal transfer entirely. Neither is within reach of mortal wallets, on a large scale, either.

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Danux
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Re: Ice Box

Postby Danux » Mon Feb 15, 2016 6:24 pm

Perfesser wrote:"it's basically effortless"
My hydro bill is equal to about 1 days pay or or 5% of my income(@20 working days per month)at certain times of the year - anything but effortless. OK - on average maybe only 3%
Swapping out frozen jugs takes 5 free minutes.


OK, I get your argument , but is all your electricity going into just your fridge? Also, when they say "effortless", I suspect they mean it's reliable, convenient, and virtually perpetual - it takes no effort to use it, beyond stocking it. The work they perform, which makes running that appliance possible, is work they would have to do any way. The money that is spent running it could have gone into something else, but the convenience of it make the thought of managing the ice undesirable.

While your fridge was/is down, did you consider switching to a "camping" cooler for refridgeration? I think you'd find you'd have to swap your ice out less often, if the chest is large enough to hold all your food.

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farmgal
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Re: Ice Box

Postby farmgal » Tue Feb 16, 2016 12:59 am

Danux wrote:
farmgal wrote:you can make great ice blocks using the winter rubber tubs, the water freeze's solid, they pop out and can be stacked well, not quite the same as cutting blocks but it got me effective easy to create and all the same size, weight to work with.


This is what I was thinking, but I am only familiar with plastic tubs. My experience with making blocks in a Rubbermaid tub was that it was sometimes difficult to remove the block, and because the plastic became brittle as it got colder, I usually ended up breaking it by spring. Do you actually have a container made of rubber, or silicone, or some other material that stays pliable in the cold?

http://www.miller-mfg.com/RBPAN.html

these are the kinds you are looking for.. tough as nails, never get brittle and will last for years of wear and tear, and if you flip over, it just dumps out.. and you can adjust sizes as you wish..
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Re: Ice Box

Postby Perfesser » Tue Feb 16, 2016 2:35 am

While your fridge was/is down, did you consider switching to a "camping" cooler for refridgeration? I think you'd find you'd have to swap your ice out less often, if the chest is large enough to hold all your food.

Of course I did. Had I not left it at the cottage I would have been using it.

Who the heck needs a cooler in the winter? People who bought an LG refrigerator....
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Danux
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Re: Ice Box

Postby Danux » Tue Feb 16, 2016 6:29 am

farmgal wrote:these are the kinds you are looking for.. tough as nails, never get brittle and will last for years of wear and tear, and if you flip over, it just dumps out.. and you can adjust sizes as you wish..


OK, I think I may have seen these in Peavey Mart. Thanks.
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Re: Ice Box

Postby peppercorn » Sat Feb 20, 2016 5:42 am

I might be wrong, but I thought Pevey mart only had round ones, or maybe only did when I was looking. I got mine from Princess auto, the square or rectangular ones worked better space wise for me, 20 liter size makes a big block.
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Danux
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Re: Ice Box

Postby Danux » Sat Feb 20, 2016 3:22 pm

peppercorn wrote:I might be wrong, but I thought Pevey mart only had round ones, or maybe only did when I was looking. I got mine from Princess auto, the square or rectangular ones worked better space wise for me, 20 liter size makes a big block.


I was looking in the latest Peavey Mart flyer, they just happened to have those rubber tubs on sale, and they all appeared round. I would definitely prefer a square shape as well. I'm looking on the PA site right now, though, and all I'm finding are the same round tubs (under livestock care) that, apparently, PM carries.

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