Update on dorm fridge install--Burro 17 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-25-2012, 05:27 PM   #1
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Update on dorm fridge install--Burro 17

This is a pictorial of current progress based on discussion in the "Pros and Cons" dorm fridge vs. 3-way thread. Removing the 3-way presented me with a shoulder-width opening thru which to remedy other problems: new stand for hot water tank and pump; new wire run for 12vdc socket; 120vac muffin fan on strut behind upper fridge vent; Reflectix vent fillers for winter use. Pix follow.

jack



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Old 03-25-2012, 08:37 PM   #2
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Don't you love the domino effect when starting one thing and being able to do other things because of it! Thanks for the pics too.
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Old 03-25-2012, 09:19 PM   #3
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Hi Donna. The domino effect comes into play when you DON'T take remedial action on all this stuff that rusts out, breaks off, rots away. A "shoulder-width opening" is a golden opportunity not to be taken lightly according to these old bones.

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Old 03-25-2012, 10:22 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rabbit View Post
A "shoulder-width opening" is a golden opportunity not to be taken lightly according to these old bones.

jack
Hint, hint, hint... remove the sink if you want to replace the kitchen faucet.... ask me how I know (old bones play here as well)
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:09 AM   #5
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Jack: I too have suffered through the frig problem and searched for solutions to fit our traveling and camping style. If I remember correctly the old unit was a Dometic 2333 and pretty frustrating. It will be interesting to see how your solution pans out.

My setup is probably somewhat different than yours: two group 31 batteries, 6-gauge wiring all the way from the alternator. Tried everything, including running it on 120v from an inverter,etc. The problem with a Radio Shack remote thermometer is that one can tell at all times how badly the frig is misbehaving, but it is a worthy diagnostic tool.

I ended up with a Novakool 4500 which is barely smaller than the original but allowed for rigid white styrofoam insulation. It might be good to compare the R-value of the Reflectix with the white stuff. The Novakool can be set up for various speeds by changing a cheap little resistor, mine is set up to have multiple speeds available. The slow speed for ours uses 38 watts (12v), intermittently of course. The key is the Danfoss compressor. A 100w solar panel provides power, but when it is cloudy or shaded cannot quite keep up with the Burro's total power usage.

Since you are in there I'd like to mention what I found. Since mine is a unit that needs the original vent grilles for efficiency I left them and added a couple of fans. I'd like to suggest that you consider what happens when a big truck passes by: water splashes in through the vents and can travel around on the floor and emerge at various places. Very frustrating. I ended up with baffles and dammed up the area behind the frig and put a small screened drain pipe through the floor.

A note: The Novakool is so quiet that I am unable to tell whether it is running or not. It was a considerable concern to me before installing it. I will be very interested to see how your installation meets your needs.
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Old 03-26-2012, 05:08 PM   #6
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Per, I gave 70 bucks for the Black&Decker at ChinaMart. I had the Reflectix for making dew shields for my two astronomical telescopes. But let's say I've got maybe 5$ there and 8' of 1 1/4" leg aluminum angle, most of which is riveted to the fridge housing and the leftover is attachment for the water heater and fridge platforms so another 15$. 1C is a lot less than 5+C for another 3-way and the price of the NovaKool is over the moon to me (I might not think twice about laying that out for a collectable double-barrel shotgun). If the compressor will hold up against the jolts and bumps of over the road and I get five seasons out of it, I'll be satisfied. I will also carry a Coleman upright ice chest for when Reddy Kilowatt is not available. I'm sure there's some mess, inconvenience, and improvisation involved but think this is the best (inexpensive) solution for us. I apparently am unable to keep my cool around "theoretical" multi-fuel refrigerators.

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Old 03-26-2012, 06:24 PM   #7
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Jack: point well taken. Legitimate priorities all, and it takes all viewpoints. The Novakool is obscenely expensive and barely defensible on our SS income, but I plan to be buried in the Burro (?) and do a lot of boondocking before then, so I gulped.

On the other hand, I spent a year in Vietnam and wouldn't own a firearm if I was paid to. Both our approaches seem legitimate to me.
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Old 03-26-2012, 10:25 PM   #8
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10 mo., 21 days, 14 hrs. for me. Nha Trang, Cam Ranh, Phan Rang, Ban Me Thuot, straitleg trained but mainly REMF stuff attached to the Winged Wheel (82nd Trans). I don't particularly care for milsurp or "black" guns myself but kind of loopy over double shotguns.

A reliable fridge would make "living in the icebox" (I think that's something you said about Burros due to the chilly-looking molded liner) much less frustrating and you don't have to justify the expense to me. Pinching pennies often leads to letting go of a bunch of them twice (the false economy of always wanting more than you're willing to pay for). I've been caught in that trap a few dozen times in my life and may be again in this case. It's a habit I can't seem to break.

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