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Old 04-08-2021, 05:44   #1
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Boat: Owner built 60í Aluminum Expedition Yacht.
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Freezer War

Iíve simply got to find a reliable freezer or suffer the fate of Captain Bligh.
Two Dometic Cool Freeze boxes have now died. They work for a while then quit.
We have more than enough solar, generator and batteries. 24 volt, 700 ah.
Current thinking:
Option 1...Buy a Laboratory Freezer. Helmer or Follett.
Friends in research recommend Helmer. Under counter about 4 cu ft.
Option 2...Build a box and complete system from commercial components.
This will eat up a lot of time. Donít need more refrigeration only a freezer.
I have space for a box with 6Ē of insulation or more. Which components?
Pandoraís box now open for comments.
The manatee crew now on strike till I come up with a plan.
Thanks in advance for all contributions.
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Old 04-08-2021, 06:01   #2
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Re: Freezer War

Get an Engel and it will last a lot longer than the Dometic but cost twice as much. I have had Engels and can attest that they will last through conditions that I thought for sure would kill them.

If you go the built in route, I've seen a LOT of people going for drawer type fridges and freezers, brands like Isotherm, but I have no personal experience with them yet.
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Old 04-08-2021, 06:09   #3
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Re: Freezer War

For easy, reliable, instant gratification can't beat the Engel. As noted, not cheap but have not seen many if indeed any at all, complaints about failures and problems. Only downside, it does make a bit of a humming noise when the compressor is running. Not really loud and intrusive but it's there.

Family members have Isotherm drawer units and they seem to do quite well.

For constant use, long term, not in the way (where do you put the Engel where you don't trip over it or block up some major area of the boat) a built in unit is my choice. It is a lot bigger project, in fact one of the biggest projects in my refit was rebuilding and insulating the fridge/freeze box but in the long run it has been one of my favorite upgrades.
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Old 04-08-2021, 09:14   #4
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Re: Freezer War

Too bad Sub-Zero doesn't make marine refrigerators, those things are bulletproof.
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Old 04-08-2021, 13:26   #5
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Re: Freezer War

Thank you for the replies. I have a friend with an Engel who loves it. Sub Zero and Wolf...all the real commercial kitchen stuff is great.
I had to make a decision today because my manatee crew were long past thinking about mutiny, they were loading our Trinka with supplies and looking for a breadfruit tree on tele florist. There were rumbles about calling the orcas.
So on Monday, Iíll go pick up a Helmer Scientific Freezer.
Helmer freezers are well known in research laboratories and it will be interesting to see how they work at sea.
We have two refrigerators, the lower is a Vitrifrigo double drawer to which Iím going to add more insulation. My wife loves it because you can see everything and itís easier than bending down for something small. Our top refrigerator is a regular door commercial all refrigerator.
Again, thank you for the replies.
Happy trails to you.
Captain Mark
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Old 22-02-2022, 10:01   #6
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Re: Freezer War

Mark, we have 2 Vitrifrigo single drawer freezers, and a double drawer fridge. The fridge energy consumption seems ok. But the freezers are another story. Even in Northern Europe the compressors ran nearly full time, and at max cold setting we still donít get ice cream hard. Now in the tropics itís hopeless.

From building a proper freezer on our previous boat, w 5Ē foam all around, I know that the insulation on these Vitrifrigos is the problem.

I see that you planned to add insulation to yours. Did you ever do it? If so, what did you add, and how did it work out? Thanks
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