Pearson 33 Ice Box Conversion - SailNet Community

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Old 11-11-2014
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Pearson 33 Ice Box Conversion

In my search of ice box conversions, I have come across the Waeco Adler Barbour Coolmatic conversion kit. Model CS-NC-15. The unit is @$700.00 It is a self contained unit that is installed by cutting a hole in the side of the ice box. Adjacent to my ice box is a wet locker. So, my questions are--Does anyone have any experience with this unit?..is the wet locker an adequate space to vent the unit? The fan would be located in the wet locker. Would I have to dedicate a separate battery to run this? My searches have come up with 0 reviews of this product.
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Old 11-12-2014
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Re: Pearson 33 Ice Box Conversion

No experience just looked at the domestic specs on the unit and the main thing that would bother me that I saw was they don't list power usages for that series and model is the cost your main concern also what is the size and expected use of your future refrigerator? I have installed several different types of conversion units and seems if cost is the concern and not power it may well be a viable unit for weekend and summer cruising
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Old 11-12-2014
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Re: Pearson 33 Ice Box Conversion

I have one of those in my Columbia 36. It was cheapest unit I could find to replace my ancient Cold Machine when it crapped out. It was a very easy install and while the power usage is not published it does seem to use less than the old unit, about 4 amps while running. Keep in mind the old one was at least 25 years old so its not a fair comparison, and how much it runs is totally dependent on how well the box is insulated and the ambient temperature. The unit works well enough for weekending, running for only a couple days at a time, but if left running longer the evaporator will ice up and stop the fan from blowing air through it. After that it just runs and runs and doesn't cool at all. It's worse in humid weather, starting to ice up in a few hours.
As a fix the first couple season we used an electric hair dryer to blow hot air through it every couple days to thaw it out. After that I rewired the fan to run on a separate switch and leave it running most of the time. That has the fan blowing air through the evaporator with the compressor off so it doesn't ice up. Completely blows the amps savings though. They should have built the thing to run the fan for a few minutes after the compressor stops. That's how "frost free" home fridges do it.
Overall I wish I'd popped for another Cold Machine or similar unit. The evap's on those ice up like an old non-frost free fridge, but they still work while doing it.
OK for a weekender, terrible for longer use.
The locker the unit vents into need to be well ventilated, the wet locker probably is so that would work well for any conversion unit. Make sure the box is really well insulated, especially on the side facing the locker and the side facing the hull.

Last edited by capt jgwinks; 11-12-2014 at 09:12 AM.
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Old 11-14-2014
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Re: Pearson 33 Ice Box Conversion

I have the same unit in my Pearson 35, it works ok as Capt. says it will ice up, out of the boxit needs work, change out the inside fan to run all the time, I changed the fan itself, Ihave two 1 1/2" fans blowing down the coil and changed the thermostat to a digital one from ebay. power wise it's not too bad, it will shut down before it drains the battery too far.
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