Ice Box Liner Removal

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  • February 07, 2012 1:00 AM
    Reply # 818124 on 696676
    Thomas Koehl wrote:Werner,  If you get really ambitious and want to rebuild your icebox for refrigeration, I did that on Second Wind.  I had no liner (or anything inside the icebox except for the plain plywood outer box) and had to start from scratch.   I came up with a design with about an R24 insulating factor and just over 5 cu ft of space.   The plans are packed, but I could probably find them if you are interested.  in addition to the dual lift-off lids, the entire top of the icebox can be removed with six screws.   I did that so that I could add refrigeration at some future date without tearing things apart.   The inner liner is 1/2 inch plywood with a white formica layer to protect it and keep it clean, per Bud's suggestion.  It took a while to fabricate it, especially the stepped lids, and it's hardly lightweight, but it's plenty sturdy.   I also have a Fein if you need to use one - let me know asap before I pack for the trip to FL on the 20th.   -Tom Koehl

    My next big project, next on the list of things to is re-build my icebox.  My insulation is so shot my Adler Barbour runs almost constantly and still doesn't keep things icy cold like it should.

    My plan is to fabricate a new icebox with new lids, most excellent insulation and be 'compatible' with my Adler Barbour reefer.

    If you happen to run across the plans of your icebox I would be very interested in seeing them.
  • June 23, 2012 7:56 PM
    Reply # 981049 on 691898

    I just now came across the photos of your installation. Top notch job!!

    The horizontal installation of the freezer unit seems to make a great deal of sense... easier to get to the freezer and the cold air would logically move down. It also gives you some good shelf space.

    I finally got around to getting my Adler-Barbour back on-line. I had added to the insulation the last time I worked on the boat. But I needed to rewire the compressor and thermostat link to getting it running this time. It was previously wired directly to one of the house banks. But, I ran it through the main breaker panel when I rewired the whole boat. This gives me the ability to switch from bank to bank. Right now, the freezer is holding at about -5 degrees and the main compartment is holding at about 30 degrees, even in the upper part of the box. I may have to swap out the thermostat, as it doesn't seem to be cycling off. (I have gallon jugs of ice tea that are frozen solid.)

    One of things that I found frustrating was how incredibly inconvenient it was to store things so that they would be easily accessible. My box had a couple of plexiglass plates that rested on the upper and lower notches. But the relative heights of the two made it impossible to conveniently store anything. If you put beer/soda bottles, milk cartons, etc, in the bottom, then the lower shelf was too low. If you used the upper shelf, it was too close to the lid to be of any value and wasted space between the bottles and the shelf. And of course, it was a real pain to get to a beer when it was desperately needed (for friends, of course).

    So I came up with a solution that you and others might find helpful as well. I stashed the plexiglass shelves... they were useless. Instead, I built two frames out of teak that rested on the top indent. The frames were built so that Sterilte plastic containers fit perfectly into them... with or without the lids. This arrangement placed the bottom of the containers about a 1/2 inch above any bottles or cartons and even allow bottles or cartons to be stored within them and not interfere with the reefer top. Alternately, I can store smaller items in them and use the lids. This allows me to stack another 1/2 height Sterilite container on top. And they are all very easy to remove for access to items in the bottom.

    I drilled 3/4" holes in the sides of the containers, so the cold air could enter. I did not drill holes in the bottoms of them. That way if they leak or something gets smashed it can't leak into the bottom of the reefer.

    Hopefully the photos show the end result well enough.


    Last modified: December 14, 2015 4:46 AM | Anonymous member
  • June 24, 2012 5:21 AM
    Reply # 981186 on 691898
    Deleted user


    Imitation being the sincerest form of flattery, I intend to flatter you sincerely. What a great idea for organizing the contents of the box. You are absolutely right about the shelves, they look nice, but…

    I will be making a trip down to Ft. Lauderdale fairly soon and would like to pay a visit although whenever I see your work it makes my project list longer and longer. Good job!


  • June 24, 2012 8:46 AM
    Reply # 981275 on 691898
    Thanks, Werner. Having spent some time aboard Rhapsody, I consider that to be a real compliment.

    As I was pulling out the boxes to get dimensions for you, a thought occurred to me that could improve upon the design. I made a handle out of teak and nylon line that makes it even easier to pull them out. It's probably now easier to access things in my icebox than from my refrigerator, back when I had a real home (and a real life).

    Most projects tend to require many times more effort that the benefit would warrant. In this case, I would say that the benefit outweighs the effort ten-fold. It might be worthwhile to start a new topic: "Small projects, with BIG rewards" just for simple ideas that work.

    The dimensions of the teak strips are not critical other than the length must fit within the shelf steps of the reefer box, and the plastic boxes need to fit snugly enough within the frames that they can't slip through. This is one of the many projects I've done using some of the teak flooring strips that came from Michael & Susan Beilan's W43, "Infini", when they ripped out the floor to replace tanks. Boy, did that teak come in handy for a lot of things, after I resurfaced it on my planer! Thanks again Michael & Susan!

    I used Sterilite boxes which turned out to be a perfect fit for mine. Sterilite's product line is constantly changing and their product quality has improved over the years. The boxes I used were the Sterilite #1961 (small clip box) and the Sterilite #1962 (medium clip box). They are available at Walmart, Target and lots of other places.


    Update Dec 9, 2015 (done long ago... just now updated the post):

    I found that the string handle, though effective, always seemed to get in the way. So I replaced it with a brass bail that slides into the holes, out of the way. I made the bail out of a heavy piece of brass rod, sliding it through a hollow fiberglass tube before bending it, to make it more comfortable to lift and to assure it didn't lose its shape.

    Then I added one of the old plexiglass shelves back onto the top ledge, over the freezer and put in two storage boxed that slide into place, all the way out to the hull. Because these shelves are higher and reach out to the outer edges, they tend not to be as cold as the lower refrigerated section. So I use these for things that need to be cool but not necessarily cold... veggies, cheeses, preserved meats, etc. (I even keep my spare pole spear bands in the back, as it greatly prolongs their life.)

    This photo shows the inner top box in its normal position...

    This one shows the inner top box slid out for access. If you lift it out, the other one is easily accessible by reaching in and grabbing it.

    Last modified: December 14, 2015 4:48 AM | Anonymous member
  • June 25, 2012 7:49 PM
    Reply # 982676 on 691898
    Deleted user


    Thanks for posting the additional photos, info and the nice compliment. I'll be heading south in the next couple of weeks and will stop by. I wanted to come down on Rhapsody and maybe catch the rendezvous in Fort Myers, but this has been a lousy year so far for weather and they're closing a lock on the Okeechobee waterway early July, shutting it down 'till August. It's been so windy, I blew out my staysail on the Intracoastal last month! If it ain't one thing, it's Debbie.


  • December 18, 2015 12:36 PM
    Reply # 3709276 on 691898
    Deleted user

    Wow this is very helpful! Thank you so much for updating this post.

    Have a great week end, Tamra

  • December 18, 2015 2:03 PM
    Reply # 3709383 on 691898
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Jack: thanks for the pics -- and the part numbers ... Pygmalion's frig needs organization...


  • December 30, 2015 1:59 PM
    Reply # 3732505 on 691898

    You're welcome, Jay... I hope it helps. Sterilite's product line has improved dramatically over the past several years. I remember when they first came out, they used an inferior grade of plastic that easily cracked. The current line holds up quite well. 

    As I've added new storage over the past few years, I've always designed it around the dimensions of the Sterilite products. This makes it possible to shift items around from one cabinet to another, without needing to transfer items from one storage bin to another. Pretty much everything in my boat is stored in this manor. Although my boat is totally dry, It assures that things that need to be dry will stay dry and that liquid items won't cause problems, should their containers break or leak. 


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