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Old 10-04-2021, 16:27   #1
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Question Refrigeration system replacement - need help

Hello! First time post for me so here goes!
I want to replace a 35 year old R12 refrigeration system which no longer works in a sailboat I am restoring. The system is water cooled and 12V - a configuration I want to stick with as the pump is newer and still works fine. I am looking at using a Frigoboat W35F compressor and some to-be-determined Frigoboat evaporators. Yes evaporators plural as in two separate iceboxes. The current system feeds two separate evaporators in series - something I don't completely understand. I would like the new system to also cool both boxes which are only about 2-3 cubic feet each and about 30 inches apart. I do not see components from Frigoboat which would make this possible. Maybe I need to use a different manufacturer but I like the idea of their pre-charged plug and play components. If anyone has the knowledge of how to do this it would be much appreciated. It seems to me that it would be a pretty common problem as I see many boats with galley configurations having separate ice boxes and can't imagine that they are all using multiple compressors.
Thanks!!
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Old 10-04-2021, 16:32   #2
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

I threw out my old water cooled system that had holding plates and replaced it with 2 Waeco cold machine compressors and evaporator plates about 10 years ago. Best thing I ever did ! and they come ready gassed up.
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Old 10-04-2021, 18:10   #3
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ticonian View Post
Hello! First time post for me so here goes!
I want to replace a 35 year old R12 refrigeration system which no longer works in a sailboat I am restoring. The system is water cooled and 12V - a configuration I want to stick with as the pump is newer and still works fine. I am looking at using a Frigoboat W35F compressor and some to-be-determined Frigoboat evaporators. Yes evaporators plural as in two separate iceboxes. The current system feeds two separate evaporators in series - something I don't completely understand. I would like the new system to also cool both boxes which are only about 2-3 cubic feet each and about 30 inches apart. I do not see components from Frigoboat which would make this possible. Maybe I need to use a different manufacturer but I like the idea of their pre-charged plug and play components. If anyone has the knowledge of how to do this it would be much appreciated. It seems to me that it would be a pretty common problem as I see many boats with galley configurations having separate ice boxes and can't imagine that they are all using multiple compressors.
Thanks!!

Hi, take a look at the offerings of oze fridge, an Australian company that ships worldwide.
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Old 10-04-2021, 18:15   #4
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

Hi. Thanks for your quick reply. I am really trying to stick with water cooled for its efficiency and a single compressor to avoid the additional cost and power consumption. There must be someone that makes the means to do this.
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Old 11-04-2021, 06:41   #5
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

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Hi. Thanks for your quick reply. I am really trying to stick with water cooled for its efficiency and a single compressor to avoid the additional cost and power consumption. There must be someone that makes the means to do this.
I do not normally like to recommend a companies product but there is only one company I am aware of that has ability to supply refrigeration design you are looking for, SeaFrost. They already have the system design that fits your
requirements. They have low profile energy evaporators for duel small boxes and an air or water combination cooled condensing unit. Their kits are pre-charged for DIY installation and they offer the best after market support in the US for small 12 volt refrigeration.

When you talk to the refrigeration salesman or hopefully the engineer make sure they understand what temperatures you want to maintain in each box. Define the boats DC power grid to insure is is sufficient for added load of refrigeration. Climate air and water temperatures are important in selection of a boats refrigeration system.

When you think a refrigeration unit is the one you want ask others that have it for comments otherwise you will find good boat refrigeration has different meanings through the boating industry from just reading web boating forms..
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Old 11-04-2021, 06:48   #6
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

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Hi. Thanks for your quick reply. I am really trying to stick with water cooled for its efficiency and a single compressor to avoid the additional cost and power consumption. There must be someone that makes the means to do this.
You might want to read some of the previous discussions on air vs water cooled. Air is much simpler, pumping water uses a good bit of power which reduces the power savings, and in systems cooled with raw water corrosion is inevitable sooner or later and when it happens the salt water in your system kills it completely and permanently.

I went air cooled with my fairly large box about 9 cu ft including a 1-1.5 cu ft freezer space. In Florida summer with 90-100 degree days I use about 50 amp hours/day. A rebuild of the box with major insulation upgrades is a big part of that but still the air cooled is quite efficient even in hot weather. Winter that drops to under 30 amphours/day.
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Old 11-04-2021, 09:05   #7
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

Hi Richard. I checked out Sea Frost's site and yes that is exactly what I am looking for. Hallelujah! They should really look at their search engine optimization as many search strings describing exactly what they offer did not find them. Anyway, I will be going with their air-water cooled combo unit as my compressor lives in the engine compartment and it stays pretty warm in there. That's probably why they set up water cooled in the first place.
Thanks for your replay also Skipmac. I have read a few of those article and want to stick with at least a partial water cooled for the aforementioned reason. Also I am on the Great Lakes and don't have to worry about salt water.
Thanks again guys!
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Old 11-04-2021, 09:44   #8
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

`I spent thirty years cruising in tropical waters and Summer cruising in all but one of the Great lakes. Water temperature up there is generally to cold for cooling these small compressors. I believe a fan cooling condensing unit in engine room will perform better than unfriendly water cooling. Water cooling these small units is most efficient when seawater temperature is 65 degrees to 75 degrees F. These small compressor systems are very sensitive to refrigerant volume which increases and decreases based on condenser cooling medium temperature changes.
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Old 11-04-2021, 10:39   #9
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

Adler Barbour has an option for water cooling on one of their air cooled units.
https://www.dometic.com/en-us/food-a...barbour--20987
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Old 11-04-2021, 10:57   #10
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

I was initially against water cooling. Then seafrost explained that their water cooling is really just an add-on to the air cooled system, which when used will dramatically lower the head pressure. It is not required and if the pump clogs or fails, the beer stays cold.
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Old 11-04-2021, 11:35   #11
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

I think you should reconsider your bias against the air-cooled units. I was also biased but was convinced by an engineer to go with air-cooled 10 years ago. I would not go back.
One disadvantage of water cooled that hasn't been mentioned on this thread is that if you leave the refrigerator on while not on the boat a simple hose failure can sink your boat. Not the case with air-cooled.
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Old 11-04-2021, 11:49   #12
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

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I think you should reconsider your bias against the air-cooled units. I was also biased but was convinced by an engineer to go with air-cooled 10 years ago. I would not go back.
One disadvantage of water cooled that hasn't been mentioned on this thread is that if you leave the refrigerator on while not on the boat a simple hose failure can sink your boat. Not the case with air-cooled.
Also, based on the Great Lakes, as mentioned by Richard, the water is pretty cold which could be a problem.

Engine room installation could be an issue but that is not the best location for a compressor air or water cooled. I would try really hard to find a better spot.
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Old 11-04-2021, 15:09   #13
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

Ticonian,
As I said before you need to talk to an application engineer where you find the system that fits your needs or talk to boaters with systems you like. Cleave has been SeaFrost expert for 30 years. The advantages with SeaFrost's small system on those lakes year round are unit can run while boat is on the hard and clogging of snails in water system are not a problem by switching pump off. What may limit you to a single manufacture is dual small boxes and a single condensing unit design. Adler Barbour's CU200 is intended to be for hot engine rooms only but not for dual evaporators. Nova Kold has a much less costing air cooled only system with dual plates but the boxes must be only inches apart. Another solution if boxes are close to each other is one evaporator and a spill over fan tubes used to chill other box.
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Old 11-04-2021, 22:04   #14
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

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Hi, take a look at the offerings of oze fridge, an Australian company that ships worldwide.
Hi Bob,
Yes we build twin compartment systems for such projects but each has to be engineered to suit. This process requires information specific to the project, information that we feed into a 'Heat load, Power consumption and Duty cycle' estimator in order to determine a system that will refrigerate as required and with known consumption expectations.
Generally the refrigeration is applied via twin eutectic plates to one cabinet to operate as either fridge or freezer then using a thermo-fan unit to service the second compartment. The benefit of this set up is flexibility. It can operate as fridge / freezer, both cabinets as fridge or one only as fridge or freezer. The Ozefridge AW480 air / fresh water cooled system has automatic condenser temperature control eliminating over or under condensing issues.
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Old 12-04-2021, 02:01   #15
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Re: Refrigeration system replacement - need help

Ticonian, It looks like posters to your request for help including myself did not pay enough attention to your original post. Two to three cubic foot boxes 30 inches apart would rule out Nova Kold, Adler Barbour, spillover cooling and even Uncle Bob's box wasted space eutectic plates. Also we must rule out capillary tube refrigerant flow control used by most manufactures of small systems. Uncle Bob and I do not want to sell you an Idea that will not solve your deli-ma.
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