Ice, Coolers, Freezers, etc

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shanewave

Well-Known Member
Boy, oh boy, the knowledge on this website...all this crazy houseboat talk makes me thankful for the measly protocols on my 23' Sea Ray. It's amazing how many ways there are to have houseboat troubles. I did love my 2 trips, though, and the 24 hour lake time. I remember last year asking a guy, "How much ice did you just buy, $100?" He said, "Nope, $250..."
 

PowellBride

Well-Known Member
$250 sounds about right-unfortunately. I buy 40-50 blocks of ice @$5.05/block for a 10 day trip on the Juan. We loose a lot to melting, but it's better than making the 1/2 day run to DR mid-week. Can't tell you how many times they were out of ice when we got there and 2 years ago they only had the "pre-melted" cubes from the self serve machine we would have been very unhappy. Not to mention the gas savings by avoiding the 70 mile round trip

We keep thinking about putting a freezer on board, but our partners aren't sold, we can't agree on where to put it, and figure by the time we get the solar panels to run it, the inverter, and batteries it's a $1200 investment. After a new hull and new roof, were not anxious for further investment
 

shanewave

Well-Known Member
I sure would agree that the initial $250 is well worth avoiding the DR debacle with the pre-melted cubes! Very funny (but only from a distance). It always seems that life throws the cost-benefit analysis at every turn, whether houseboating or getting ready to sell a home to get best chance for full price offer...crazy...
 

VanillaIceCream

Well-Known Member
$250 sounds about right-unfortunately. I buy 40-50 blocks of ice @$5.05/block for a 10 day trip on the Juan. We loose a lot to melting, but it's better than making the 1/2 day run to DR mid-week. Can't tell you how many times they were out of ice when we got there and 2 years ago they only had the "pre-melted" cubes from the self serve machine we would have been very unhappy. Not to mention the gas savings by avoiding the 70 mile round trip

We keep thinking about putting a freezer on board, but our partners aren't sold, we can't agree on where to put it, and figure by the time we get the solar panels to run it, the inverter, and batteries it's a $1200 investment. After a new hull and new roof, were not anxious for further investment


Sure it's expensive...but it's ICE!
 

Waterbaby

Moderator
Staff member
$250 sounds about right-unfortunately. I buy 40-50 blocks of ice @$5.05/block for a 10 day trip on the Juan. We loose a lot to melting, but it's better than making the 1/2 day run to DR mid-week. Can't tell you how many times they were out of ice when we got there and 2 years ago they only had the "pre-melted" cubes from the self serve machine we would have been very unhappy. Not to mention the gas savings by avoiding the 70 mile round trip

We keep thinking about putting a freezer on board, but our partners aren't sold, we can't agree on where to put it, and figure by the time we get the solar panels to run it, the inverter, and batteries it's a $1200 investment. After a new hull and new roof, were not anxious for further investment

How about a large cooler with dry ice to keep your blocks frozen. The dry ice is good for 5 days and freezes the blocks so solid they last longer once pulled out of the cooler - as long as you wrap the seal with duct tape and keep it covered works well.
 
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PowellBride

Well-Known Member
I've played with dry ice a couple of times, but only a block or two at a time. Wish you could buy it at the lake, otherwise I have to take an extra cooler from Denver with just the day ice
 

Squirrel

Well-Known Member
I have found that the "Omaha Steak" shipping coolers work well for having dry ice last longer. We always stop at the Kroger (King Soopers) store in Clifton for gas and ice on our way to the lake. Sq
 

Grant Stevens - USBR

Well-Known Member
$250 sounds about right-unfortunately. I buy 40-50 blocks of ice @$5.05/block for a 10 day trip on the Juan. We loose a lot to melting, but it's better than making the 1/2 day run to DR mid-week. Can't tell you how many times they were out of ice when we got there and 2 years ago they only had the "pre-melted" cubes from the self serve machine we would have been very unhappy. Not to mention the gas savings by avoiding the 70 mile round trip

We keep thinking about putting a freezer on board, but our partners aren't sold, we can't agree on where to put it, and figure by the time we get the solar panels to run it, the inverter, and batteries it's a $1200 investment. After a new hull and new roof, were not anxious for further investment


It sounds like you would get that investment back in a year or two in melted ice. Not many better places in the world that is better to have solar than AZ As a side benefit to no melted ice, your owners would have to get used to not having to worry about charging the batteries anymore... :)
 

PowellBride

Well-Known Member
It sounds like you would get that investment back in a year or two in melted ice. Not many better places in the world that is better to have solar than AZ As a side benefit to no melted ice, your owners would have to get used to not having to worry about charging the batteries anymore... :)
We do have solar for our 12v system and to trickle charge the house batteries, but not enough to also support a freezer. We'd need the new solar panels, batteries and inverter to support a freezer
 

Jackalope

Well-Known Member
We have 2 freezers on the top deck and never need to go for Ice. We just add water to a gal, 2.5 gal jugs , after drinking the water out of them , and freeze. We have an inverter system that helps, so we only need to run the gen about 2 hours a day.

We were out 12 days this last time and it worked out great ;).
 

VanillaIceCream

Well-Known Member
I have found that the "Omaha Steak" shipping coolers work well for having dry ice last longer. We always stop at the Kroger (King Soopers) store in Clifton for gas and ice on our way to the lake. Sq
Just be careful - they do hold well for dry ice, but down at Bullfrog the Ravens tore the cooler apart while away from the boat..what a mess.

I'll never use a foam cooler again for that reason.
 

Dale

Well-Known Member
Boy, oh boy, the knowledge on this website...all this crazy houseboat talk makes me thankful for the measly protocols on my 23' Sea Ray. It's amazing how many ways there are to have houseboat troubles. I did love my 2 trips, though, and the 24 hour lake time. I remember last year asking a guy, "How much ice did you just buy, $100?" He said, "Nope, $250..."
Me, too. Glad I did not buy the houseboat, for more reasons that mentioned above. On the Sundancer we had 2 "5 day" Igloo coolers for a 5 day trip, Fresh food cooler was lined with frozen water bottles, Basha's bag ice and a small chip of dry ice on top. the water bottles on the bottom still had a little ice in them on day 5.
Frozen food cooler, more frozen water bottles on the bottom, more Basha Ice and dry ice on top. Ice bottles on the bottom were still frozen solid on day 5. There was also enough ice to keep the beer cold!
 

Lake Bum

Well-Known Member
Before I invested in a few Canyon Coolers, I used to try the dry ice method, and always ended up freezing certain things in the cooler. A $300 cooler pays for itself within a few trips at Powell, because they just flat WORK! Here's an example.........Ice is running low: Time to burn $50 in gas, to buy $40 in ice, and waste 2 hours of your day on the trip to Dangling Rope (ice cream is awesome though) Since I upgraded all of my coolers, I no longer am inconvenienced with being forced to go purchase more ice, and burn gas for that purpose alone. I can focus on sightseeing around camp, fish, wakeboard, or do whatever the current mood feels like. I average 8-10 trips a year.....you do the math. The Canyon Cooler upgrade has paid for itself time, and time again! Worth every penny :cool:
 

cfulton

Well-Known Member
The Laketime houseboats have a freezer on the front deck. We have them stock it with 20 blocks of ice and 2 bags of cubes for a 7 day trip. We keep a large cooler on the front deck for drinks then daily replenish the drinks and ice from the freezer. It works just peachy! Our top deck cover is a hard material and has a solar panel set up. That really helps the time needed to run the generator to recharge the batteries. The entire hb is electric except the grill on the top deck. We have 3 full home style refrigerators, 2 water coolers, etc. Really roughin' it. Chuck
 

Ryan

Well-Known Member
We have a smallish freezer on the front of our boat. It's main job is to hold ice for the beverage coolers (which are Yeti's). We probably still go through 20 bags of ice in a week.

Not sure how much draw the freezer runs, but our inverter and six 12-volt batteries keep up, and everything is still working after 12ish hours without power.

My daytime solution is to bring about 200' of extension cord, and my two Yamaha 2000is inverter-generators. They are hauled up shore when we park, and hidden behind a boulder. They are started in the morning when everyone is up, and then shut down at night sometime before bed. Quiet enough that you don't really notice them when you are on the houseboat during the day (although we don't spend much time on the houseboat during the day), and fuel efficient enough that they only use about 15 gallons of gas during the week. I am sure I don't need to run them as much as I do, but it is nice to not have to worry about power.
 

Grant Stevens - USBR

Well-Known Member
We have a smallish freezer on the front of our boat. It's main job is to hold ice for the beverage coolers (which are Yeti's). We probably still go through 20 bags of ice in a week.

Not sure how much draw the freezer runs, but our inverter and six 12-volt batteries keep up, and everything is still working after 12ish hours without power.

My daytime solution is to bring about 200' of extension cord, and my two Yamaha 2000is inverter-generators. They are hauled up shore when we park, and hidden behind a boulder. They are started in the morning when everyone is up, and then shut down at night sometime before bed. Quiet enough that you don't really notice them when you are on the houseboat during the day (although we don't spend much time on the houseboat during the day), and fuel efficient enough that they only use about 15 gallons of gas during the week. I am sure I don't need to run them as much as I do, but it is nice to not have to worry about power.


I'm glad I didn't share a canyon with you. Running a generator all day is ignorance, and an annoyance to anyone around you. With the right charger you can bring your batteries up to 90% in an hour or 2. The rest of the time is useless and not needed as you can cycle your batteries down to 50% between charges to 90%. Peace and quiet doesn't mean you can hear the slight hum of a generator, it means you hear nothing except the wildlife, your quiet generators are likely annoying everyone in the same canyon and across the channel.

Sorry to be a smart ass, but spent too many trips next to folks with likely 10 times the battery capacity I have who run their "quiet" generator seemingly just to charge their iphone...
 

John P Funk

Well-Known Member
I ran into a generator situation like this a few years ago at the Farley Campground(Ha, Ha) a fisherman came in at dark and started his generator to charge his trolling batteries(understandable). I was tenting about 200 yds away and the thing was driving me crazy. At around 10:30 I knocked on his door and said, "Would you mind shutting off your generator, I'm having a tough time sleeping." His response, "I do mind.", with the addition of the door slamming in my face. Sound carries in the canyons, and you may be affecting other people without being aware.
 
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