Eutectic Fridge? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-24-2012, 08:41 PM   #1
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Eutectic Fridge?

Hello. I'm trying to find the parts to build a Eutectic fridge. My problem is, while they seem to be popular in Oz, I can't seem to find anything closer to home. When I try to find anything in Canada I seem to find only aluminum products but not the plates I'm looking for. Does anyone know if they go by another name in N. America or if anyone/business supplies these parts? or something similar.
This is a company in Australia that I'm not really interested in contacting - mostly because shipping would be stupid. But you'll get the idea of what I'm talking about.
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Old 02-25-2012, 12:04 PM   #2
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Alrighty... since no one has replied.. I'm guessing this will be more difficult than I thought. Anywho, here's a site where a guy built a eutectic fridge, I was hoping to be able to buy a plate instead of resorting to an open vat of chemicals.
Fitting out a motorhome - A Bravenet.com Hosted Site

On the off chance anyone has worked with refrigeration compressors, I'd love to ask a few questions. For instance, can you re-use a old freezer compressor?
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Old 02-25-2012, 12:09 PM   #3
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Jude, sorry no one has answered up. But, maybe they're all like me... I'd never heard of this kind of refer. I guess I live a sheltered life. Hope someone pops in and can assist.

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Old 02-25-2012, 01:07 PM   #4
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Jude
In my opinion it would be cheaper to get the one from Australia, yes you can reuse old compressors, but they must be vacuumed down, then you would need the gasses to fill system, need a few specialized equipment to get it right, and a whole lot of refrigeration experience which I have very little, would be a grand experiment but to what end? The link to the motor home one looks like it would take a lot of space? And with this response remember this is just my opinion
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Old 02-25-2012, 01:53 PM   #5
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Thanks for the replies. I really appreciate any info or advice I can get.


I've been reading a lot about fridges lately...

I've got a boler. I'm redesigning it, trying to make the bed bigger, get a bigger, better fridge than the monstrosity I own now that holds very little, but takes up a ton of space.
I bought a bar fridge, but the energy usage will be too much. I'm trying to save a buck where I can, and get the best bang for it. So, when I stumbled on the second site, a light bulb went off.
If I could replicate some of what he did, but... make it cleaner, safer. I'm rebuilding the entire trailer from the bottom up. I'm in the design stage now. Putting all the pieces together, on the computer. I'm removing the stove, and will buy a portable stove/oven combo. It will be stored somewhere else.
The trailer, as it stands, is down to the bare shell. It needs a lot of fiberglass work, so, I'll probably glass all the previous vent areas in, then cut new holes where I need them. The frame will be modified and strengthened, fixed and painted. I will probably get a new axel and flip it too. I'm really new to this, so there are a lot of things I don't know or understand yet...
The list of things I need seems endless, but if I can get the parts, she'll be a doozy!
Anyhow, back to the compressor. I'm confused by a few things. If you've read the site where the guy builds his own fridge, he uses an old ice maker to freeze the ice packs and ethylene. The freezer component is connected to compressor... So what is he using in the compressor? Does the gas, or whatever it is, come with the compressor or the freezing unit? or is it a combined unit? I'm assuming you still need the condenser, but are they considered separate parts. I will consult a professional at some point. Right now, I'm just trying to have a basic understanding and an idea of what parts I need and what sizes they will be.


If these seem like stupid questions, wait till you see what I need to know about solar.. lol
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Old 02-25-2012, 02:18 PM   #6
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I think that part of the information problem is terminology. In this part of the world we'd call it a "freezer plate" or "holding plate". This is a huge topic and I couldn't begin to cover it in detail but for 20 years I had a home made one in my boat and they are excellent. In the 20 years we never used our 12 volt fridge once, ended up using it as storage.

Our boat system needed about 45 to 60 minutes of compressor running time per day. Because the eutectic solution freezes at a much lower temperature it can keep the freezer/fridge cold for an extended period of time. Much longer than ice packs could.

It's quite possible to construct one, many possible pitfalls concerning compressors meant for specific types of refrigerant but doable. The final pruging and charging can be done by any AC shop. These units are also common for marine use and that's the area I'd look for parts or info.

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Old 02-25-2012, 03:11 PM   #7
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Thank you so much. This is what I suspected, we use a different name.

If you don't mind, how do you vent this fridge in your boat?
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Old 02-25-2012, 06:29 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ceilityme View Post

If these seem like stupid questions, wait till you see what I need to know about solar.. lol
I think you will get a lot more answers to any questions you have re solar than on this project as we have a number of solar junkies/experts on the forum. Your the first I have read wanting to build a fridge though - go for it! always cool when someone does the unexpected!
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Old 02-25-2012, 06:59 PM   #9
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The boat system has one huge advantage. Huge as in big as the ocean

A boat system can use a small circulating pump to remove heat from the condenser. Most are a tube-in-tube design. Very efficient and only a very small amount of cooling water is needed.

So no venting or fan blowing air over the condenser is required.

I also experimented using a 200cc diesel engine driving a compressor. A "diesel fridge", it worked quite well but with the boat system working really well I never pursued it further. But now that I'm in the same boat, err trailer, as everyone else I'll be watching how my, yet unused, fridge functions and no doubt be longing for my old very efficient boat system.

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Old 02-25-2012, 08:21 PM   #10
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Of course.. I read about the keel coolers. Smart idea. I wonder if you could rig one up or sandwich one near the water tank??? Things that make you go hmmmm.
Do you have any pictures of the old fridge? I'd love to see what it looked like.

I've been looking at the price of condensers, yeesh.. so that's why I was wondering about the freezer parts. Trust me, I have will absolutely talk to the experts. I just want to know if it's possible.
With this set up, I'll have an almost 4.5 cubic ft fridge, minus the cold plate. I'm building it chest freezer style, under the counter. The condenser can be put in a separate area, thus sparing or adding extra heat and I'll be able to combine some necessary electrical components in the one area.
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Old 02-25-2012, 10:20 PM   #11
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Actually keel coolers are usually for the main engine. The condenser in my system was a few loops of 5/8" copper tube with a 1/4" tube inside. It wouldn't seem likely that it's suitable for dry land use. I think the radiator/fan setup is more feasible.

No photos of my system, would have been difficult anyway, lots of machinery in the engine room was in the way. Sold the boat in the fall and that's why I now have a trailer

Both my previous boats had top loading boxes, much better at keeping the cold in when the lids open.

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Old 02-26-2012, 09:49 AM   #12
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Try looking at Norcold, Engel SB 70, Avanti AC/DC Superconductor, Isotherm CR 85, Sundanzer RF 134, or Novakool R4500. You might also look up Danfoss Type refrigerator to get the parts to build your own.
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