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Old 29-05-2019, 07:56   #1
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Drop in vs custom box with plates

My boat presently has a roughly 9.5 cubic foot top loading box which is split roughly 1/3 freezer 2/3 fridge. The 10 year old system is not performing (combination of a leak and too small for the box) so I'm looking to replace it.

An inspection revealed the box was originally insulated with 1" EPS wrapped with thin aluminum, PO re-insulated the box by drilling holes and pouring expanding foam in the sides. I can't be sure how good of coverage he got though, so I'm not 100% sure it is adequately insulated. Faced with the prospect of cutting out and rebuilding the box, I'm thinking about putting a off the shelf front loading replacement (e.g. Isotherm CR130 or similar). This would both save a lot of time, and enable us to get away from the top loading fridge (presently we have to clear the whole top to get anything out).

Some questions I have however are:

-Durability? Are they as reliable or long lived as typical cold plate systems (I've been looking at ColdEh, CoolBlue and OzeFridge)
-Suitability for the tropics? Are they adequately insulated for that kind of service? Could I add foam board to the outside if not?

My other thought (which I posted about here over a year ago) was to custom build a drawer fridge. I would be assured of proper insulation thickness and could choose a reliable cold plate system while retaining the advantages of not opening the top - but this would require even more effort than rebuilding it as is - so I'm not leaning in that direction.
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Old 29-05-2019, 08:05   #2
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Re: Drop in vs custom box with plates

Another option to consider is the Engel drop in model. I have one and it's great. Very low power draw (I use about 30 ah per day in the tropics). If you have room for two, you can use one as a freezer and one as a fridge (and have the option of shutting one off when you don't need it).

https://www.engelaustralia.com.au/2p...tid_21565.html
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Old 29-05-2019, 09:17   #3
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Re: Drop in vs custom box with plates

Quote:
Originally Posted by Copacabana View Post
Another option to consider is the Engel drop in model. I have one and it's great. Very low power draw (I use about 30 ah per day in the tropics). If you have room for two, you can use one as a freezer and one as a fridge (and have the option of shutting one off when you don't need it).

https://www.engelaustralia.com.au/2p...tid_21565.html
Looks like a good system! We were trying to get away from the top loading system - might work for a freezer if we put it in a different location.
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