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post #41 of 59 Old 09-01-2017
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Re: Converting a overnighter to a live aboard.

" build a cabinet that will seal up to keep moisture out"
That's a double-sided sword. Anything that keeps moisture out, also keeps moisture IN. So the only way it will keep things dry, is if there is an active way to remove moisture from inside and get rid of it. That can mean buckets of DampRid, or a dehumidifier and drain system, or other complications.
You're probably better off just having a ventilated cabinet, with a wicker or louver section to allow good airflow despite whatever the humidity is. Or a low airflow, but adding a Goldenrod (a small electric heating rod) in the cabinet floor, to dehumidify it with gentle heat. (Heat, not so good in Texas, yeah.)
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Re: Converting a overnighter to a live aboard.

I use a Coleman Fold N GO, have the griddle accessory for it, and store it in it's case which also holds two 1lb propane bottles that I keep these caps on for safety. Make sure to use it with plenty of ventilation.

I also converted my two manual hand pump faucets to these, connecting them to a spare switch on the 12v panel. The pumps have a built in automatic pressure switch. Push down on the lever for on-demand use, flip it up for continuous hands-free operation. They work great.


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Re: Converting a overnighter to a live aboard.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
" build a cabinet that will seal up to keep moisture out"
That's a double-sided sword. Anything that keeps moisture out, also keeps moisture IN. So the only way it will keep things dry, is if there is an active way to remove moisture from inside and get rid of it. That can mean buckets of DampRid, or a dehumidifier and drain system, or other complications.
You're probably better off just having a ventilated cabinet, with a wicker or louver section to allow good airflow despite whatever the humidity is. Or a low airflow, but adding a Goldenrod (a small electric heating rod) in the cabinet floor, to dehumidify it with gentle heat. (Heat, not so good in Texas, yeah.)
I had planned on just keeping silicate packs in the bottom.
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Re: Converting a overnighter to a live aboard.

On our previous C27, I did tons of work to that boat. When we bought her, she was a hot mess - no cushions, full of trash, filthy, no working head or water, no functioning stove, filled with mold, etc. I brought her back a long way...







And as for cooking, I pulled the guts out of the old Princess alcohol stove and replaced all of it with the guts of a campstove. Maybe not quite to ABYC standards, but hey - it worked...



...and we just unhooked the bottle and regulator when were done, and stored the bottle in the open lazarette where any leak would vent.

BUT, I thought it might be safer to keep the bottle outside and so got this extension hose...



I honestly think that was worse. I mean regular camp stoves have the bottle next to the stove anyway, and when disconnecting the hose outside, a lot of gas was lost by what was still in the length of the hose.

So, the challenges are definitely surmountable. You just make it work.

PS - She will definitely get wet inside in the winter here unless you have some really good air circulation. Otherwise, keep a big tub of Damprid out.
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Re: Converting a overnighter to a live aboard.

Air flow is your friend.
Only seal money, gold treasure...and some food stuffs.
Maybe some spare parts , too....

If you have shore power, the $25 box fan you bought at Wally or Dollar Store will need to be named, as it will become your loved pet. Get a female fan - they are better behaved. Box fans in TX do not need to be licensed...nor do they need shots...

Starting back from the Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, etc...all the way to NASA - even Area 51...nobody has come up with anything better than the camp stove.

A non-slip rug runner or 2 with a batt hand vacuum and you are golden. Control what comes inside, because once it's in...it's in.
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post #46 of 59 Old 01-30-2018
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Re: Converting a overnighter to a live aboard.

I found this thread and read through it with interest. I'm about to transition to an Islander 30 as my 'most of the time' dwelling, and deciding whether to pull out the mini-fridge which was inserted into the main cabin's locker. (Amazingly, a perfect fit to the door opening!)

While the Boat Galley's "Storing Food Without Refrigeration" book is on my to-read list, I wondered if anyone can share their experience with actually using the icebox on a sailboat with (gasp!) actual ice. My current plan is to stay in the marina, so ice is available. Does it work well? Is it really just a a matter of letting the melt water drain out and refreshing the ice once a day or so? (Or less?)

Thanks for any feedback-

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post #47 of 59 Old 01-30-2018
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Re: Converting a overnighter to a live aboard.

I only have an ice box without refrigeration. I don't live aboard but cruise for several weeks at a time. A couple quick thoughts:

Block Ice lasts longer than cubes or chips.

I typically freeze milkjugs that are filled almost full of water and use them in my ice box. I also use some cubes on the drinks side of the icebox.

At the dock people on other boats with refrigeration will sometimes refreeze my milkjugs for me overnight.

When cruising I get about a week out of the ice in my icebox. This of course varies with the outside air temperature and can be as short as 4 or so days.

I am careful to minimize the time that the icebox lid is open.

I pump out the melt water frequently (3-4 times a day) since I have always heard that keeping the melt water in the icebox increases the melt rate. I have a hand pump that drains my icebox and I use the melt water for gray water uses like the first rinse of dishes.

Ice lasts longer in top loading iceboxes.

Adding weather seals to the lid greatly lengthen the life of the ice.

I put the ice on the bottom and the food on top. My theory is that the ice lives where its coolest and the food acts a insulated barrier to room temps.

My icebox is pretty well-insulated, but not great, and is partially below the waterline of the boat.
Keep your food in plastic and be religious about not allowing food bits to get into the ice since they will spoil over time and really smell such that you get to a point where you have to clean everything out of the icebox clean the box and re-ice again. Don't ask me how I know this and how many times you might have to do this on a simple 2 week cruise.

If you have an icebox drain, add a way to block it or add a 'P' trap, because you lose a lot of the cold down the drain.

Being able to install an insulated blanket directly over the top of the ice and food can make a very big difference as well.

The efficiency of a commercially available Igloo style icebox can be greatly increased by building a box out of 2" Polyisocyanurate foam around the cooler (top, bottom and sides). Polyisocyanurate foam ( i.e. R-Max ECOMAX ci) is available at most lumber yards and has a higher insulation value per inch than the more common polystyrene foams (White, pink and blue board)

That about it.

Jeff


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post #48 of 59 Old 01-30-2018
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Re: Converting a overnighter to a live aboard.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff_H View Post
I only have an ice box without refrigeration. I don't live aboard but cruise for several weeks at a time. A couple quick thoughts:

Block Ice lasts longer than cubes or chips.

I typically freeze milkjugs that are filled almost full of water and use them in my ice box. I also use some cubes on drinks side of the icebox.

At the dock people on other boats with refrigeration will sometimes refreeze my milkjugs for me overnight.

When cruising I get about a week out of the ice in my icebox. This of course varies with the outside air temperature and can be as short as 4 or so days.

I am careful to close the icebox lid and I pump out the melt water frequently (3-4 times a day) since I have always heard that keeping the melt water in the icebox increases the melt rate. I have a hand pump that drains my icebox and I use the melt water for gray water uses like the first rinse of dishes.

Ice lasts longer in top loading iceboxes.

Adding weather seals greatly lengthen the life of the ice.

I put the ice on the bottom and the food on top.

My icebox is pretty well insulated, but not great, and is partially below the waterline of the boat.

If you have an icebox drain, add a way to block it or add a 'P' trap, because you lose a lot of the cold down the drain.

Being able to install an insulated blanket directly over the top of the ice and food can make a very big difference as well.

The efficiency of a commercially available Igloo style icebox can be greatly increased by building a box out of 2" Polyisocyanurate foam around the cooler (top, bottom and sides). Polyisocyanurate foam ( i.e. R-Max ECOMAX ci) is available at most lumber yards and has a higher insulation value per inch than the more common polystyrene foams (White, pink and blue board)

That about it.

Jeff
Thanks, Jeff.

My icebox has what looks like a screw-in drain plug at the bottom; since the boat is still new-ish to me, I haven't confirmed that it actually does drain. ;-)

The comment on block ice is a good point. I still have an old-school 'cooler,' though it sees little use, and a number of the sealed 'freeze blocks' I used to use with that. Since I'll mostly (perhaps fully) be docked at a marina, I would think I can freeze them overnight in the conference room fridge/freezer, sounds like a good plan to start with.

I'm leaning towards getting the fridge out of the boat and reclaiming the lost storage space. Who knows, with enough determination, I could even wean myself off the microwave, lol...

Thanks again for the info-

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Re: Converting a overnighter to a live aboard.

I'll second what Jeff said, and add that block ice probably lasts 3x-5x longer than cubes, which in turn vary with their shape and size. (Bigger cubes take longer to melt than smaller ones.) If you have the chance of deep-freeze anything, in a commercial freezer or overnight at the local ice cream store, a couple of quarts of frozen chowder, lasagna, etc. makes a good ice cube while it is thawing.

We used a foot pump and pumped the meltwater (the hose should have a loop in it, just below the ice box, so it keeps some water in the line and doesn't let cold air drain out) into one of the galley sinks, where it sits and keeps canned drinks cold for the day, without the need to open the ice box. Makes the ice work twice before it is gone.(G)

Even with "gallon" sized block ice, chilled in a deep freeze, you may find it hard to keep any ice longer than 3 days in a warm climate.

You can also use dry ice. There's some question about where how much CO2 can go in the boat, but it seems to take so long to boil off that there's no issue with this under normal circumstances. Not cheap, not always easy to find, but effective.
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Re: Converting a overnighter to a live aboard.

I lived aboard with an ice box. I wasn't too keen on it, but my wife (then girlfriend) used it a lot. Like above, she used the block ice. It could get funky fast if it wasn't drained properly, disgusting soup actually. My current sailboat which is used for cruising but not live aboard has neither an ice box nor a fridge. I just use a cooler. Actually, my wife uses the cooler, while I prefer to buy items that don't require refrigeration. Its amazing what you can do without refrigeration with planning.
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