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Old 01-07-2010, 09:12   #556
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ENGEL Fridge Freezers...

At the risk of offending someone, I found a tech brief regarding these on a trucker's forum...
"
Compare Engel 12-Volt Fridge Freezer Technical Information

The Swing Compressor motor and pump used to power the Engel Portable Fridge-Freezer was developed about 40 years ago. Having only one moving part, it is the only compressor of its type in the world.

The Swing Compressor is a true reciprocating compressor with only one moving part. The piston is driven by an electro dynamic device which is powered by the use of magnetic fields. There is no need for bearings, cranks or con-rods, with this technology. Less moving parts literally means less chance of failure. Because the Swing compressor has only one moving part there is a very low friction loss. i.e. This is a highly efficient compressor.

The compressor has no high start up current draw because when it starts the piston can simply move a fraction then return. Following startup, it gradually increases the distance the piston travels each cycle until it reaches a full stroke.
The Sawafuji Swing Motor is located inside the compressor casing with pins located in rubber bushes suspended iby shock absorbent springs. It operates at 30 degrees angles and on rough corrugated dirt roads without losing efficiency.

Read more: Compare Engel 12-Volt Fridge Freezer Technical Information

I personally know these units are favored in Africa for use on safaris...

In that use they get pounded over hundreds of miles of gravel and dirt roads, many of them washboarded... which means they get pounded...

Yet they still work.

INDY


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Old 01-07-2010, 09:59   #557
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Needed is a pressure cooker. Canners are nothing more than a very large
pressure cooker.
NDY
Depending on what you're canning, it doesn't have to be "very large". The one you carry anyway could do it. We can things at home sometimes, but we only use the small pint-size jars or sometimes the half-pint "jelly jars". And our normal pressure cooker does 4 or 5 of them (it's been a while since we got to it, can't remember) at a time, so it gets through a whole recipe in 1 or 2 batches.
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Old 01-07-2010, 12:55   #558
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You have to put the jars somewhere anyway. Put them in the canner and the canner is not taking up much more space than the jars, full or empty, would take.
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Old 01-07-2010, 13:36   #559
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Engel Frig/Freezer - Very interesting but some of the touted stuff is not true. "There is no need for bearings . . ." There are quite a few bearings in the unit as it is a push-pull piston solenoid type device. So there are guide rods and limit switches all of which have "bearings" which would more properly be called sleeve bearings versus rotational ball bearings. Wherever there are moving parts there are bearings that wear away. There is no mention of the refrigerant used in these units.
- - Being a reciprocating solenoid type device there is considerable vibration due to the reversing direction of the mass of the piston/plunger assembly. These types of devices are not built for constant use but intermittent use.
- - Power draw listed shows 60 to 120 amp-hours per day depending upon frig or freezer use. That is an enormous amount of electricity for a $500/month boat.
- - I think the unit is very good for the purpose it is sold as a temporary refrig/freezer in a commercial truck operation. But for marine use it would be very iffy and a lot less efficient than the inefficient rotational units we now use.
- - I still contend that refrigeration/freezer units on a $500/mo boat budget is a non-starter. The discussions of canned and packaged foods is more in line with the "simple life" that is the hallmark of the extreme budget cruiser.
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Old 02-07-2010, 06:59   #560
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The refrigerant is specified elsewhere in the reference given.. it is R134a

The photo of the guts of the compressor looks like the interior of a free piston stirling engine... that is you have recoil springs and ball bearing pop valves. I have those valves on my FynSpray Galley Pumps very little to go wrong...

The stirling will have a similar arrangement for shifting the working fluid back and forth.

Power draw as given in the reference is 2.5 amps max for the 45 qt unit and 4 amps max for the big units. In my experience these units run 40% of the time. that means 48 watts X 16 hours or 460 watt hours / day ( 40 amp-hr/ day) for the big unit and 288 watt hours / day (24 amphr/day) for the small one.

I specified the small one in my analysis and recommended 120 watts of solar panels to run the fridge and the lights, this allowed for 50% efficiency in energy storage in the battery.

Several guys with 29 ft boats are speaking highly of their experiences with this unit in bahamian cruises.

All in all, the ENGEL is a good unit, and the variety of sizes means even the guy on a 22 ft boat can use one if he wants.

In my experience the vibration is minimal, certainly less than a danfoss compressor.

As I said earlier, I personally know these units are used extensively on safaris in Africa. The trucks generally travel about 6 hours daily, then are shut down during time in camp. The fridge must run off batteries til the next morning, and there must be sufficient power remaining to start the truck. Osirissail, is not doing his home work, his calculations are way off.

INDY

INDY
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Old 02-07-2010, 08:52   #561
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Your words brought up an idea.
What would happen if you used a Stirling engine and a fluid with high heat expansion properties, and added a minimal horsepower electric motor? Would the Stirling engines effect tend to support part or most of the load? Once a flywheel was spun up, would the engine actually be able to work with a fluid medium instead of a gas medium?
Would fluid even be needed? Compressor side as the hot side of a six cylinder 90 degree Stirling, and water as the coolant on the other end. Flywheel, and spin up motor. Would the amount of heat evacuated by the Stirling engine be enough to remove enough heat from the system for a small fridge? Head of the 6 cylinder engine designed as a heat sink that is embedded in the coolant flow on the fridge side, and the other side in a circulating water bath. If the heat transfer is good enough, the electrical load would be very low. A 6 cylinder engine should be able to pump it's own water after it is spun up.
Heat used to cool, and to power the cooling effect? Using a stirling to remove the heat would still require a compressor of some kind to transfer the heat to the head of the engine. The heat would be dumped outside the passenger area of the boat in a dribble of water.
Any possible energy savings benefit over using pulsed electric servos?
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Old 06-07-2010, 14:00   #562
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stirling engines and refrigeration...

First of all Stirling Engines are not new... they were invented during the late 19th Century, that is, over 100 years ago...

Their inventor, hoped to eliminate steam explosions, then a common problem with that era's steam engines...

This engine does have a working fluid however... In refrigeration use, this fluid should be an inert gas, of low molecular weight. This is why you hear helium and carbon dioxide being used.

The hot side of this engine consists of whatever conductive plates are joined to that side of the cycle, and the cold side is made likewise.

In refrigeration use, such as Global Cooling does, the engine is a free piston design, and the piston is driven by magnetic coils surrounding it.

This design is very similar to the Sawafuji design for the ENGEL compressor.

The stirling design is limited by spatial requirements that demand the heat exhaust be from one side of the engine and the cooling occur at the other end. Usually, very conductive metals such as copper or aluminum are used for this purpose, and thicknesses must be sufficient to transfer the heat at the required rates.

The Sawafuji refrigeration design permits siting the cooling within the box, and indeed, the heat absorber can be configured to surround the refrigerated space, the heat rejection side can be a typical home refrigerator coil, as in the ENGLE refrigerator or a water cooled heat exchanger, which is more efficient. Furthermore, these items can be separated from one another by as much as 2 meters, giving the whole installation flexibility.

If you look at the actual specs for the ENGEL unit you see that this unit in the 45 qt size uses as much power as a 12 watt incandescent bulb, and in the 60 qt size uses as much power as a 25 watt mast head tricolor light.

Considering the utility of a drop in box which needs no special skills to install and operate, and the cost of that, and the utility of cold drinks and ice and refrigeration in general, the ENGLE box has a very small foot print.

A handy guy could improve on the ENGLE box by building his own box to the same interior dimensions, but perhaps twice as tall, and with at least 6 in of close cell foam insulation in the sides, perhaps 8 in in the bottom and 6 in in the top. If the box was top loading, and filled with rows of baskets, with the freezing section in the bottom, the middle could be used for dairy products and the top for vegetables. This box would likely use less power than the original box, due to the much greater insulation, despite the increased size and surface area. The bottom of the box would receive the ENGLE cooling coil, the expansion valve would be sited somewhere on the box, and the compressor in handy place. If the original heat rejection coils were used, they could be sited in a convenient place, or a water cooled heat exchanger could be used instead, and would give much better efficiency. The handyman should join everything with soft copper, using soldered connections or swagelok fittings. He'd need shrader valves or something to evacuate the system, and to charge it, and to monitor it's performance, until it is stable. He'd need a set of gauges and a vacuum pump too.

INDY
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Old 06-07-2010, 15:19   #563
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The Engel is attractive because they describe it as - "electro-dynamic reciprocating device that connects directly to the piston of the compressor." That translates to a solenoid similar to the one in your engine starter - just that this one continues to turn on and turn off rapidly to provide the compressor function.
- - What is exciting about the Engel is that it is a real 12volt DC unit. The Danfoss compressor are not 12volt DC they are all 120V AC units. Attached to the outside of the Danfoss compressor is the "power module" which is a small plastic box that contains an inverter to change your input 12/24volt DC to 120V AC power. I found out the hard way that the little plastic box (power module) replacement costs US$250 eight years ago. Today it lists for about US$290. And, the little plastic box is not "marinized" which means it is open. I also found out the hard way, if any seawater, or other water gets into it, it shorts out. That really made me mad and my wallet empty as I had to buy two replacements for my two systems.
- - How the Engel changes 120VAC into DC is not explained in the website but probably their use a "power module" to convert your input AC to DC. On a cruising boat the 12/24volt DC is the big plus and I could care less about the 120VAC portion.
- - What would be really wonderful would be if they made the system available like the marine refrigeration units with modular parts including the evaporator plates or coldplates and piping and then the compressor/condenser unit. Then we could install it in our existing or newly constructed built-in refrig/freezer.
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Old 07-07-2010, 07:50   #564
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Building A Refrigerator....

A few thoughts on building a refrigerator using the SawaFuji Compressor..

One way to do it is simply to buy and disassemble an ENGLE unit.

The other way is to buy the heat exchanger, cold plate, and expansion valve from refrigeration suppliers, and the compressor from ENGLE.

I have never done this, and actually, I think the best option is to build a spot for the size box you want and drop it in. That way if the box needs repair you can simply take it to the shop.

If osirissail is correct and the compressor is really a 12 VDC unit, you don't need an inverter to run this box, however you install it.

Please note that in my analysis I gave a seven (7) year life expectancy for the ENGLE box. I assumed that after that period, the box was toast and would be swapped out.

Please also note that the size of the compressor varies with the size of the box. The give away is the current draw in amps.

INDY
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Old 07-07-2010, 09:16   #565
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LPG Portable Fridge ...

Seems the Australians like their beer cold when out back in their 4X4s.

So....

They have eutectic portable fridges... like the AutoFridge...

and...

They have portable absorption fridges which run on 120VAC, 12VDC, or LPG..

Voila'

Chescold
The Chescold range from Electrolux comes in three models, with 33-litre, 39-litre and 50-litre capacities to choose from. Unlike most other portable fridges on the market, the Chescold fridges use a heat-exchanging unit to cool the contents down, which can run on 12V, 240V or LPG.

The added option of being able to run the fridge from an LPG gas bottle is an attractive one for those who own a 4WD with no space to fit a second battery. LPG bottles are easy to have refilled, and Chescold's claimed gas usage figures make this an inexpensive option in terms of fuel. A piezo ignition system means safety and reliability for the unit. Ranging in price from $621 for the 33-litre to $1188 for the 50-litre, all models come with a three-year warranty.

Price: $621 (33-litre), $890 (39-litre), $1188 (50-litre).
From: Electrolux, Ph: 03 95455655


Prices are in Australian Dollars... from...

Portable Fridges - Equipment Tests - Overlander 4WD Magazine - Australia's leading four wheel drive magazine

So, another possibility for our micro-budget cruiser is to buy an LPG portable, or a Norcold LPG unit and run the unit on LPG. This would eliminate the electric system all together, and simplify the boat.

OR...

Install a eutectic fridge like the Auto Fridge from Quirks... and run the unit during the day from solar panels... reducing power loss from battery inefficiency..

AND....

Check out this page for a complete analysis of various portable fridges suitable for this application.

Ray's Caravans, Campervans & Motorhomes - Portable Fridges 1-

INDY
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Old 08-07-2010, 07:43   #566
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Just want to thank Goprisko for starting this very educative thread.

He has freely and generously shared his knowledge and experience with whoever would take his/her time to read on this forum while he could easily have written a book, a series of articles or done seminars on the subject.

And yes you Naysayers, it's not only doable it's a great life! We have been out for over a year and could easily cruise on such a budget. In Europe! Yes, that's true, you read that right.

We are not quite there though, simply because we don't have to, we travel more inland than such a budget would admit, and also tend to have more expensive and extensive communication equipment.

But if we had to, no problem at all.

A someone said, the minimum salary in Portugal- for instance- is 450 euro

So it's obviously possible to live in relative luxury on a smaller/simpler type boat compared to those who raise a family on that amount on land.

Shame on you who think otherwise. Your nothing but spoiled westerners!But to each his own of course, I am not condemning anyone for doing it in their fashion at all. We do notion that 'richer kinda folks in bigger kinda boats' tend to socialize less with locals, tend to worry much more about piracy, theft and so on, and obviously spend more time in expensive, and deadly boring marinas as opposed to at anchor, and also spend a lot more time in said marinas waiting for repairs and spare parts...this is so evident all over the place that I cannot comprehend that not everyone sees it.

In 13 months we spent less than 15 nights in marinas, and that includes the English channel and the North sea.

IN a third world country 500 USD is a LOT of money, if you eat locally produced food which is a good idea for all kinds of reasons anyway.


I registered on this forum solely to express my gratitude to Goprisko, but is's a good forum so I will stay around and hopefully share some info over time.

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Old 08-07-2010, 08:17   #567
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I suppose one could live on $500 a month ifffffffff there were no break downs or parts that needed to be replaced and you stayed mostly in countrys where things were very cheap-and you did not need to phone home or fly home or run your engines much- and of course we all know that this could not last long because things that get used break or wear out and there goes the budget!
My boats was less than 4 years old and the Fridge is broke-ive replaced 2 raw water pumps and oil is $10 a quart in the Med and fuel is $8-10 a gal- im very frugal but about $1200 a month seems like the best I could do-
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Old 08-07-2010, 10:22   #568
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... Shame on you who think otherwise. Your nothing but spoiled westerners!But to each his own of course, I am not condemning anyone for doing it in their fashion at all ...
Thanks for the laugh.
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Old 08-07-2010, 13:42   #569
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I suppose one could live on $500 a month ifffffffff there were no break downs or parts that needed to be replaced and you stayed mostly in countrys where things were very cheap-and you did not need to phone home or fly home or run your engines much- and of course we all know that this could not last long because things that get used break or wear out and there goes the budget!
My boats was less than 4 years old and the Fridge is broke-ive replaced 2 raw water pumps and oil is $10 a quart in the Med and fuel is $8-10 a gal- im very frugal but about $1200 a month seems like the best I could do-

Back there again, huh? For starters we do not have refrigeration on board. A cold one could be nice at times, but I have never been able to see the point with a tiny fridge in a boat....unless you're staying put in a marina.

As said before in this thread, you need a smallish boat and you need to keep it simple. Furhtermore you need to have the necessary skills to maintain and repair everything you carry onboard. At least to a reasonable level. For me, that means everyting from rewiring the boat, to doing fibreglass work (or welding on a metal hull) and changing the engine.... if you have one that is.

I read you are inte charter, and for me that is something completely different, esp. since your guests expect AND are willing to pay for all the conveniences you could provide on board, right?
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Old 08-07-2010, 13:43   #570
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Originally Posted by svrodeorm View Post
Just want to thank Goprisko for starting this very educative thread.

He has freely and generously shared his knowledge and experience with whoever would take his/her time to read on this forum while he could easily have written a book, a series of articles or done seminars on the subject.

And yes you Naysayers, it's not only doable it's a great life! We have been out for over a year and could easily cruise on such a budget. In Europe! Yes, that's true, you read that right.

We are not quite there though, simply because we don't have to, we travel more inland than such a budget would admit, and also tend to have more expensive and extensive communication equipment.

But if we had to, no problem at all.

A someone said, the minimum salary in Portugal- for instance- is 450 euro

So it's obviously possible to live in relative luxury on a smaller/simpler type boat compared to those who raise a family on that amount on land.

Shame on you who think otherwise. Your nothing but spoiled westerners!But to each his own of course, I am not condemning anyone for doing it in their fashion at all. We do notion that 'richer kinda folks in bigger kinda boats' tend to socialize less with locals, tend to worry much more about piracy, theft and so on, and obviously spend more time in expensive, and deadly boring marinas as opposed to at anchor, and also spend a lot more time in said marinas waiting for repairs and spare parts...this is so evident all over the place that I cannot comprehend that not everyone sees it.

In 13 months we spent less than 15 nights in marinas, and that includes the English channel and the North sea.

IN a third world country 500 USD is a LOT of money, if you eat locally produced food which is a good idea for all kinds of reasons anyway.


I registered on this forum solely to express my gratitude to Goprisko, but is's a good forum so I will stay around and hopefully share some info over time.


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