Do you bring coolers? - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-20-2014, 02:28 PM   #15
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Name: Steve
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The tiny fridge in our Scamp 13 is good for 2 people for the weekend except for our large consumption of liquids. So we have the extra cooler for things that can swim in melted cooler water. Anything more than a weekend we will also carry an extra cooler with block Ice and everything frozen in side. In the cool of the morning we transfer frozen to the fridge or out to thaw for the day or the next day. The cooler with the drinks is in the truck at all times and carrys cube ice, snacks like sealed cheese sticks and condiments with the drinks, all this stuf can swim. We travel about by day and our refreshments goes with us. We tend to set up base camp so to speak and travel about by day so having this cooler with us is important. we pack dry goods in a large extra tub so bread, chips and fruit and snacks dont get smashed. It is also easier to pack the truck when you dont have to worry about stuff getting smashed along the way. Toss it in and go. The fridge works well if everything that goes in is cold so transfering from the ice chest to the fridge works well. If you use the fridge like home going in and out and running supplys down and restocking all at once its going to suck.
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Old 01-20-2014, 03:49 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Ice-breaker View Post
We have a nice large 6.7 cu-ft 3-way fridge in our Escape 19'. It is large enough that for many trips we could make do without a cooler. However, I like to bring along a cooler for mostly drinks, which can then sit outside with me when we are enjoying the sun and having a few cool ones.

Typically, when we are "camping," we do not sit around the campsite all day long. As a result, many of our meals are purchased from various establishments in our daily travels. But we also have a small cooler which is used for whatever liquid refreshments we may want in our travels or at the end of a day's explorations. Since we are out and about much of the time, it is not an inconvenience to stop at a grocery store to restock. So our refrigerator always has staples (milk, eggs, hot dogs, salad dressing, etc.) but we usually do not try to store food for multi-day planned meals. It would be different if we planned on sitting around the camping site all week but we don't camp that way.
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Old 01-20-2014, 04:56 PM   #17
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Nate,

We never carry a cooler and average over 7 months a year in our Scamp with the small fridge. We have learned to live without ice and drink fluids at fridge temps or room temp. Our motorhome had a much larger fridge and we found we carried a lot more stuff, but stuff that just didn't get used very often.

We find the small fridge adequate. It does mean we find that we have to shop every few days but that's not a problem. As well, we always carry a couple of pounds of smoked salmon, requiring no refrigeration.

We find we eat differently when we travel eating breakfast and one real meal a day with a light snack during the day sometime.

Compared to a home fridge our RV fridge is anemic but adequate. We use fans blowing across the external coils to improve fridge efficiency.
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Old 01-20-2014, 05:50 PM   #18
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We find the fridge in our Casita quite adequate, and do not carry an extra cooler. When we have electric, we take an ice maker, this cools or liquids.

The other thing we do is carry meats I have canned, so they need no refrigeration. We carry prepared, home canned soups and chili, as well as different home dehydrated vegetables and fruits. These items really help with cutting down on the need for fridge space.

We found a powdered milk we like, okay, to mix up in a qt. bottle for a day or two. Chilled it is good, or we carry shelf stable qts. of milk we buy for a $1, at the Dollar Tree, and chill as needed. It comes in a nice rectangular box that fits easily. It is very good.

We use egg powder for recipes, as well as the dried milk. We carry spices and can put together about anything we need. terry r.
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Old 01-20-2014, 06:01 PM   #19
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We have no fridge or icebox in our Scamp. Instead we keep a large, efficient cooler in the topper of the pickup. During the day when we are at the campsite we keep it on the tongue box and at night we store it in the truck topper. Itís also handy to take the cooler with us so we have access to cold pop or water when away from the trailer out shopping or sightseeing and also handy for keeping food cold when we return from the supermarket.

Items that need to be kept dry are stored in a dry container in the cooler.

I think we are under the impression that we are still camping in a tent...

Dan
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Old 01-20-2014, 09:15 PM   #20
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Name: Hazel
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We have a tiny 3way fridge in our Trillium and find it adequate for two without an additional cooler. We don't keep lots of beer/pop etc ready to drink though.

The fridge holds some milk, juice, eggs, cheese, sausage (garlic, pepperoni, typically), some already ready cut veggies in ziplocks (cabbage, onion, celery, carrots, parsnip typically), bacon, meat for a day or two (ziplocked) and two or three days meat in the freezer. I also pack in some frozen food in square boxes - home made soup or stew or chilli. They stay frozen for days but I keep track so we can use them before they completely thaw.

Our fridge is more efficient if we cool it well overnight at home before adding the food, and keeps very cool while we are travelling and leaving it untouched.
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Old 01-25-2014, 08:51 PM   #21
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Cari & I designed our rig(s) around the idea of getting the biggest bang for design with the desire of going off-grid without much fuss. With that in mind, we included the idea of cooler verses powered-fridge.

In our van we carry two Engel Deep Blue 80qt coolers. For a typical 5 day adventure (we prefer taking off monday through friday once a month) we will put a bag of ice in each cooler, fill one with meat type stuff, and the other with veggies/fruits. This arrangement keeps the coolers at ~30 to 35 degrees. We keep most of our beverages in a dark lower cabinet in the van and they remain cool to the touch which is fine for us. The ice will actually remain for about 8 days, we know this as we've gone out on a few ~10 day trips.

We also ordered the Parkliner with the stock cooler-box...which actually, is filled with some beverages without ice at this point.

Anywhoo...coolers can allow for a simple way to keep power consumption/needs in a rig to a minimum rather than utilizing propane/electric to keep food safe for a handful of days between ~weekly grocery runs.
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Old 01-25-2014, 09:01 PM   #22
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We used to use coolers and ice back in our tenting days. We found it got pretty expensive keeping stocked up with ice. The places we camped were often a LONG way from anywhere that carried ice.

It sure is interesting reading the solutions different people use.
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Old 01-26-2014, 07:35 AM   #23
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Ever since our car was broken into in Reno and everything inside stolen except a cheap, Styrofoam ice chest I always carry my most valuable things in one. BTW, that Styrofoam ice chest contained my 4 X 5 view camera, three lenses, and a Rolleiflex 2.8F - worth much more than all the suitcases the thieves made off with.
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Old 01-26-2014, 07:56 AM   #24
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Coolers and change

We've simply learned to live without ice, much of the world does. It's interesting, though this month we have access to ice, the clubhouse has plenty, we never think about it. The fridge more than adequately cools water, water has become our primary drink though occasionally we flavor it. (As well we carry 4 bottles of wine for those moments.)

One of the great benefits that we never considered when we took up RVing was the healthful aspects of travel, at least for us. It's not simply the new outdoor nature of our new life style but as well the elimination of stress and the diminishing of eating for non-nutrition reasons.

As a result we eat a lot less and we eat a lot better. Example when working there would be the mid-morning meeting donut and coffee snack now the mid-morning snack is, this month, pomegranate seeds. Any little meal we cook becomes at least two meals. In the past if we cooked four pork chops we ate them, now we eat two today and two tomorrow. We are now really two meal people snacking for the third meal, splitting an apple and peanut butter or a couple of yogurts. All this means the small fridge serves us without the requirement for a cooler.

In the process I've lost 60-70 pounds; Ginny's number is a state secret but she's lost a lot as well.

It's most interesting to me that after 58 years of life, that a dramatic approach to our previous way of living can be changed. Less and better food and massively fewer things.

Coolers, useful but not necessary for us. We do shop more often but definitely do not have a cooler need.
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Old 01-26-2014, 08:06 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CPW View Post
Typically, when we are "camping," we do not sit around the campsite all day long. As a result, many of our meals are purchased from various establishments in our daily travels. But we also have a small cooler which is used for whatever liquid refreshments we may want in our travels or at the end of a day's explorations. Since we are out and about much of the time, it is not an inconvenience to stop at a grocery store to restock. So our refrigerator always has staples (milk, eggs, hot dogs, salad dressing, etc.) but we usually do not try to store food for multi-day planned meals. It would be different if we planned on sitting around the camping site all week but we don't camp that way.
I'm not sure any of us sit around the campsite all day, even at rallies we walk around and meet other campers. i think the point being made was with or without a large refer, when one is relaxing by the fire, at night, after being active all day, it is more convenient to have a cooler by the fire with potables versus opening the screen door and the refer to get another libation.
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Old 01-26-2014, 08:55 AM   #26
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The fridge in my newer casita is all automatic and 4 cubic ft. And nice! But..I still don't trust it. I can fix a plugged jet but I can't replace the circuit board that controls it. People do have fridge breakdowns and that is not going to rain on my parade. We take a cooler and just use it as a box for supplies. It is a backup for the fridge.
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Old 01-26-2014, 09:18 AM   #27
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My philosophy has evolved slightly over 10 years of camping in the Casita. At this point it's that I want to support the local economy. I usually camp at state camprounds and I'm unclear how much of that gets into the local economy, but I think groceries and gas are mostly local. So I buy and bring along only things my experience has shown are not usually available in small towns. Living in a large urban area I can find smaller quantities, or can repackage subsets. Every trip starts with a grocery trip once I arrive and they repeat often during the vacation.

I'd prefer not to carry a cooler and I've successfully avoided one so far, so the volume stored in the fridge is modest since I'm not carrying a whole trip's worth of food. I always have a few canned/boxed meals for when I don't get near a store when running low. Since I'm not a big pop/beer drinker I only store 4-6 cans in the fridge and usually restock the fridge just before bed as it's usually at its most efficient overnight.

I second Donna's suggestion about a remote temp sensor in the fridge. I have a wireless one in there and I do fuss with thermostst some over a trip and I found the door sealing needed improving which has improved temperature recovery quite a bit.

I also vacuum seal and freeze meats. I don't have a freezer and although the meats defrost over time I find sealed foods last longer defrosted.
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Old 01-26-2014, 10:02 AM   #28
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We have a remote temp sensor in the fridge as well, $10 at Walmart.
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