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#276166 - 08/10/15 08:23 AM Re: A Total Collapse [Re: JeffMc]
adam2 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 05/23/08
Posts: 386
Loc: Somerset UK
Originally Posted By: JeffMc
You guys appear to know a lot about this, so I have some questions for you.

I've looked into high-end ice chests, such as the Yeti brand, for car camping, etc. But their prices ranges up to several hundred dollars for something I would only use on infrequent longer campouts, and I already have several mass market brand coolers that are usually adequate for my needs.

Beyond the usual things like keeping them full, limiting opening frequency, and using block or dry ice, what might practically be done to extend their range?

I plan on getting some Reflectix insulation (basically bubblewrap faced with foil on both sides) for a different project. Would it be worthwhile making a cooler over-jacket out of that? Or is most of the loss incurred by air leakage and opening? If so, would it make more sense to add a gasket and maybe some means of clamping the lid down tighter?

Any ideas appreciated. Thanks for sharing your expertise!


Practical experiment beats theory.
The effectiveness of an insulated container may be determined by a simple experiment.
Place a known amount of cubed ice from an ice maker into the insulated container and observe how it takes for the ice to melt.
If uncertain as to the effectiveness of adding an insulating jacket, then measure the time taken to melt say 5 kilos of ice with and without the insulating jacket.
I doubt that fixing the lid more tightly would help much because they are reasonably air tight anyway, but again if in doubt try the experiment.
The effectiveness of different brands or types of cooler may be compared in a similar way. Remember that bigger coolers are better, provided that they are full. If comparing coolers of different capacities I would use a weight of ice in proportion to the internal volume of the cooler.
The exact placement of the ice is not that important, but it must be consistent from one test to the next. As the intention is keep most or all of the inside of the cooler cold, the ice should be placed near the top.

Ideally conduct such tests indoors in a heated/conditioned room in order that the air temperature remains similar from one test to the next.

The time taken for the ice to melt may not accurately reflect conditions of use during an actual emergency, but IT IS a level playing field for comparison purposes.

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#276170 - 08/10/15 08:22 PM Re: A Total Collapse [Re: Jeanette_Isabelle]
RNewcomb Offline
Member

Registered: 04/19/12
Posts: 170
Loc: Iowa
Thanks to everyone for their responses!

I hope someday they develop a cure for Diabetes. I am fortunate enough to not have developed it personally, but one of my co-workers daughters developed it over the summer (Type I), and that's what spurred the whole conversation here at the office.

I've passed your idea's on to him, and he was very grateful! It at least gives him some options to at least buy his daughter some time in a prolonged emergency.

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#276173 - 08/11/15 12:40 AM Re: A Total Collapse [Re: JeffMc]
Teslinhiker Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/14/09
Posts: 1308
Originally Posted By: JeffMc
You guys appear to know a lot about this, so I have some questions for you.

I've looked into high-end ice chests, such as the Yeti brand, for car camping, etc. But their prices ranges up to several hundred dollars for something I would only use on infrequent longer campouts, and I already have several mass market brand coolers that are usually adequate for my needs.


Beyond the usual things like keeping them full, limiting opening frequency, and using block or dry ice, what might practically be done to extend their range?
I plan on getting some Reflectix insulation (basically bubblewrap faced with foil on both sides) for a different project. Would it be worthwhile making a cooler over-jacket out of that? Or is most of the loss incurred by air leakage and opening? If so, would it make more sense to add a gasket and maybe some means of clamping the lid down tighter?

Any ideas appreciated. Thanks for sharing your expertise!


Don't waste your money on a Yeti or other high end cooler, excepting an ARB 12 volt cooler which is beyond this subject here.

Our main cooler is a Coleman Xtreme 70 quart which can be had for around $50.00 to $60.00. Using frozen blocks of ice or water bottles is far superior to using ice cubes as the density of the blocks or frozen bottles, far exceeds ice cubes.

When packing the cooler, it is first lined with a spare Grabber all weather blanket.


Next an old towel is placed into the bottom of the cooler then bottles of frozen water are added.


Next cover the bottles with the 2nd fold of the towel. It is here that any food or beverages are added. Note that the images are deceiving, there is sill a lot of room in the cooler


After you have added the food etc (keep oft used food at the top so you do not have to dig through to the bottom and open up the carefully packed cooler all the time.)
Add as many more more frozen bottles on top as much as possible then cover with another towel then fold the blanket over that. After doing using this method a few dozen times, one gets quite efficient at packing the cooler and adding more frozen bottles then first imagined.


By using this method, we have been able to keep food for 9 days in temps ranging from 80F to close to 100F while camping. Of course, the top water bottles will be thawed by the end but the bottom bottles should still have ice left in them and by which time, most of your food will be used up anyway.

The real secret with any cooler is to use frozen blocks of ice, or in this case, frozen water bottles. Also minimize lid opening and keep the cooler out of the direct sun and out of hot ambient temperatures. During the day, keep the cooler in shaded areas as much as possible and it also does not hurt to drape a sleeping bag or bed blanket over the cooler as well as it will also serve as insulation from the heat.

Also room permitting, use a separate cooler for daily drinking bottles of water, juice, pop, energy drinks etc as this separate cooler will also minimize lid opening on the cooler containing food.
_________________________
Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.

John Lubbock

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#276174 - 08/11/15 01:08 AM Re: A Total Collapse [Re: RNewcomb]
Teslinhiker Offline
Veteran

Registered: 12/14/09
Posts: 1308
Originally Posted By: RNewcomb
Thanks to everyone for their responses!

I hope someday they develop a cure for Diabetes. I am fortunate enough to not have developed it personally, but one of my co-workers daughters developed it over the summer (Type I), and that's what spurred the whole conversation here at the office.

I've passed your idea's on to him, and he was very grateful! It at least gives him some options to at least buy his daughter some time in a prolonged emergency.


For prolonged emergencies where power may be out for days or months and a persons life is dependent on keeping any medicine cold, I would invest in about 300 to 400 watt solar panels, at least 2 x 6 volt golf cart batteries connected in series (to get 12 volts), a 1000 watt inverter and a small apartment style fridge - more commonly known as a bar or dorm fridge.

The solar panels will provide enough amps per day - even on cloudy or shorter fall and winter days to keep the batteries charged enough and allow the fridge to run without any problem.

This basic setup could be put together for less then $1200.00 (not including taxes.) However the best thing about solar is, the more batteries and panels you add, the more power you have to run lights etc. Also, extra solar panels can be added singularity as money allows as they do not need to be purchased in a kit form.

Windy Nation 300 watt solar panel kit $500.00

3.2 cubic foot fridge $160.00

Xantrex 1000 watt inverter $235.00

Trojan T-105 Golf Cart Battery (x2 required) $250.00

Another alternative is an ARB 12 volt cooler. By using this, the above inverter and fridge would not be needed.
_________________________
Earth and sky, woods and fields, lakes and rivers, the mountain and the sea, are excellent schoolmasters, and teach some of us more than we can ever learn from books.

John Lubbock

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#276175 - 08/11/15 01:34 AM Re: A Total Collapse [Re: adam2]
UTAlumnus Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/08/03
Posts: 971
Loc: East Tennessee near Bristol
I see. For some reason, I was thinking residential freezer type that stores ice inside the freezer instead of bar/restaurant type.

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#276177 - 08/11/15 06:27 AM Re: A Total Collapse [Re: chaosmagnet]
Phaedrus Online   content
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 1983
Loc: Great Plains
Originally Posted By: chaosmagnet
Originally Posted By: Phaedrus
One of the best diabetes clinics in the entire world has basically "cured" even very advanced cases with just diet.


Was that true for Type One diabetes or only for Type Two?


I need to go back and review it to see, honestly I don't remember. I want to say it doesn't really matter which type because the treatment is the same but I need to check it over again.
_________________________
“You can tell whether a man is clever by his answers. You can tell whether a man is wise by his questions.” Naguib Mahfouz

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#276186 - 08/12/15 03:03 AM Re: A Total Collapse [Re: Jeanette_Isabelle]
Pete Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/20/09
Posts: 1307
TESLINHIKER - great system. Simple. I like it. I might have a real need for that soon. thanks for the idea!!

Pete

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#276196 - 08/13/15 02:02 PM Re: A Total Collapse [Re: Jeanette_Isabelle]
LCranston Offline
2
Member

Registered: 08/31/09
Posts: 147
Loc: Nebraska
If one had a regular deep chest freezer with bottles of ice in it, several of these methods could be combined.

During regular times, the ice in the bottles could be kept cold the easy way, plug it in to the wall.

Once an issue happens, and you determine that it will be extended, you already have all that existing ice. Using the icemaker idea, either powered by solar/battery/generator, whatever could maintain the temp of a chest freezer indefinitely.

I do agree with Telsinhiker's numbers, a small dorm fridge could be kept running via the solar. Having used several dorm fridges, I have concerns about their temperature stability. They are very small, and every time you open the door, 1/2 the cold falls out.

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#276197 - 08/13/15 02:40 PM Re: A Total Collapse [Re: Jeanette_Isabelle]
Pete Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/20/09
Posts: 1307
L Cranston ... another EXCELLENT suggestion!
I will also give that one some serious thought. Next year I might be moving to an area which is more remote. Hence electricity supplies are not completely reliable. The idea of keeping the plastic water bottles (with ice) inside a normal freezer is a very effective idea!! thanks.

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#276216 - 08/15/15 06:52 AM Re: A Total Collapse [Re: Teslinhiker]
JeffMc Offline
Member

Registered: 05/10/15
Posts: 129
Loc: Northwest Florida
Thanks for the well thought out suggestions, Teslinhiker. I have some rectangular Nalgene bottles that I use for frozen water bottles. I think I'll try your idea for inside insulation, using leftover Reflectix since I don't have a spare Space blanket and the two seem to share some similar properties.

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