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Old 08-02-2021, 03:11 PM   #1
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small 12 volt freezer?

I am looking to buy a small portable 12 volt freezer. Was looking at a Dometic but it was almost $1300. Any recommendations out there
thanks
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Old 08-02-2021, 03:50 PM   #2
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Not sure what size ¨small portable¨ is. I use an Engel MR040F-U1 40 Qt 120 VAC/12 VDC portable freezer on my boat. Have it plugged into both 12 VDC & 120 VAC at all times. Freezer is very good and very quiet running. I paid about $750 for it. Engle makes up to a 70 quart size. I will not own a Dometic product of any kind.
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Old 08-02-2021, 05:15 PM   #3
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I use one of these on the flybridge:

Alpicool T36 Dual Temperature Control 12 Volt Refrigerator 38 Quart Portable Car Fridge Freezer (-4°F~68°F) for Truck, RV, Boat, Camping and Travel https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07MQZRWMB...ing=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 08-02-2021, 05:24 PM   #4
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2nd vote for the Engle. I have the 1cf, plastic exterior model. Ice cream in Bahamas powered by solar.
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Old 08-02-2021, 05:40 PM   #5
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I have one that the original owner of my boat had. So it is about 10 years old at this point. It was labelled as a NovaCool but wasn't manufactured by them. It is finally dying but has been out in the cockpit for a decade exposed to the elements and salt spray. It did a great job of keeping frozen food frozen. Now, it is just being used as drink cooler as I can no longer adjust the thermostat and it is set for 2 degrees C.


In looking to find a replacement, the good ones are all expensive. So I'll just keep using the old one I have for now until it dies completely.
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Old 08-02-2021, 07:25 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by gkesden View Post
I use one of these on the flybridge:

Alpicool T36 Dual Temperature Control 12 Volt Refrigerator 38 Quart Portable Car Fridge Freezer (-4°F~68°F) for Truck, RV, Boat, Camping and Travel https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07MQZRWMB...ing=UTF8&psc=1



If this one works, the price is really good. I have the Engle and has been GREAT!
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Old 08-02-2021, 09:04 PM   #7
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This thread is of great interest to me because we are looking for a small freezer. It seems that an inverter and 110V freezer (small) makes much better sense overall. Yes it takes some generator or solar to keep the batteries charged but the price diff is substantial.

Don
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Old 08-02-2021, 09:06 PM   #8
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I don’t know about the small portable requirements. I would check with Sea freeze out of Bellingham. They make high quality 12 volt freezers.
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Old 08-02-2021, 09:15 PM   #9
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If this one works, the price is really good. I have the Engle and has been GREAT!
I've had a T60 (Note that they have different sized units) since March 2, so about 5 months. I also have the cover for it:

T60 Insulated Protective Cover for Alpicool Insulated Transit Bag 12 Volt Portable Refrigerator Cover https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08JMCQWR2...ing=UTF8&psc=1

I have absolutely loved it. It is a great source of drinks and snacks while single handing and my backup store of drinks when a whole bunch of people show up.

It stays up there (under the bimini, but outdoors) in all weather and underway.

The Bluetooth works great. Sometimes I realize I've forgotten about it and, instead of going up to check, just look at the app.

I give it 5 months of 5+ stars. The real test will be a couple or small few years, though.
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Old 08-02-2021, 09:58 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gkesden View Post
I use one of these on the flybridge:

Alpicool T36 Dual Temperature Control 12 Volt Refrigerator 38 Quart Portable Car Fridge Freezer (-4°F~68°F) for Truck, RV, Boat, Camping and Travel https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07MQZRWMB...ing=UTF8&psc=1
I bought a similar product which I suspect comes from the same factory in China. Different models, different brands, but similar. I expected it would not work as well as a Dometic/Waeco, but it performs surprisingly well, pulls down to 5C in 20 minutes. So I would not discount/reject these "odd" brands, but of course YMMV. The Waeco, old and giving trouble, seems to have restored itself in protest.
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Old 08-02-2021, 10:50 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonW28 View Post
This thread is of great interest to me because we are looking for a small freezer. It seems that an inverter and 110V freezer (small) makes much better sense overall. Yes it takes some generator or solar to keep the batteries charged but the price diff is substantial.

Don
You need power generation whether the load is 12v or 110v. I'm pretty sure that small 110v home freezers will use less power than most of their 12v counterparts. New home appliances are remarkably efficient. Cheaper and more effective. Double win.
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Old 08-02-2021, 10:55 PM   #12
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I wouldn't assume that "look alike" products from China necessarily come from the same factory.

Sometimes, they sure do.

But, there are other ways this happens, too. Just like in the US component suppliers produce reference designs or engineering firms design and license products. Components, including cosmetic ones, get sold to multiple manufacturers. And, IP is viewed somewhat differently in China than in some parts of the world, success gets copied (with various levels of fidelity).

Also, like in other places, a brand may be just a name and products sold under it may or may not be of similar character or come from a similar process.

I always suggest buying the product from the vendor via the channel that has worked before -- or work forward or backwards and verify that you are getting what you expect.

I don't think I've ever had a Chinese vendor lie to me about anything. But, we sure have made different assumptions or had differences of opinion -- which usually means I didn't ask enough questions and write down enough details in advance.
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Old 08-03-2021, 12:26 AM   #13
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We have had an Engle 70qt for 14 yrs, no problems and we use it a lot. It uses less power in the DC mode, 2.3A, then in the AC mode through an inverter, 4.7A. Will pull down to 0 deg in a few hours and freeze 30 lbs of food if carefully arranged in the basket.
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Old 08-03-2021, 12:32 AM   #14
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You need power generation whether the load is 12v or 110v. I'm pretty sure that small 110v home freezers will use less power than most of their 12v counterparts. New home appliances are remarkably efficient. Cheaper and more effective. Double win.
How do you figure?

The 55qt model is 45 watts compares to 80-100W for a typical slightly smaller cube refridge.

Their freezers are tiny, so they are less effective that way.

They can't be left outdoors 24x7x364, so they are less effective that way.

They won't run if the inverter and generator fail or are turned off, so they are less effective that way.

They can't be rolled off to the beach on their own wheels or put into the car and plugged in for a road trip, so they are less effective that way.

They don't have Bluetooth monitoring, so they are less effective that way.

They can't run out of the box on 12v or 120v, so they are less effective that way.

As for being cheaper, I think that only holds if we compare to a unit with a small subset of the features I cared about. That isn't a fair comparison.

Different needs yield a different CBA.

I think.
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Old 08-03-2021, 12:36 AM   #15
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Engels aren't the cheapest and may not be the most efficient but they do have a well deserved reputation for reliability. They are very popular with the 4WD crowd and there are numerous cases of them being in vehicle rollovers, bouncing out of Ute/pick up trays and living to tell the tale. I bought mine used 30+ years ago.

The only criticism would be that they are good maintaining already cold items but they struggle to actually chill or freeze room temperature items. If you need that, then a residential sized compressor works better (but you said you don't want one of those).

Good luck.
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Old 08-03-2021, 12:43 AM   #16
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My Engle does just fine freezing meat and fish from the grocery store. When we restock I pack the food in the freezer and it becomes frozen.
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Old 08-03-2021, 12:50 AM   #17
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How do you figure?

The 55qt model is 45 watts compares to 80-100W for a typical slightly smaller cube refridge.
Your points are correct. However, you have listed instantaneous draw while the compressor is running and the small on/off dorm fridges are probably the most inefficient of the domestic AC fridges.

Sorry for the thread drift but I struggled to find anything more efficient per unit volume than my domestic inverter based fridge. 400 litres draws about 1kwh per day. Where as a 40l Engle will draw not much less (80ah at 12v) when measured over 24 hours but for 10% of the capacity.

Plus you get actual cooling capacity when required, a A$700 price tag and spares availability.

Certainly not for everyone but if efficiency or bang for you buck are main considerations, then definitely a contender.
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Old 08-03-2021, 01:41 AM   #18
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Different needs yield a different CBA.
Yes, quite right. I saw the Dometic reference and in my mind jumped to a galley unit. Kind of missed the portable part. My bad.
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Old 08-03-2021, 02:34 AM   #19
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Another vote for Engle. We live-aboard and ours has been running 24/7/365 for 11 years with no issues.
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Old 08-09-2021, 12:48 PM   #20
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In case someone needs larger one for under 1K:https://www.360medical.ca/products/8...BoCJZsQAvD_BwE
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