Ice at the campsite when you have iceless coolers?

Discussion in 'Refrigerators and Coolers' started by mpking, Jan 3, 2019.

  1. mpking

    mpking Well-Known Member

    1,065
    178
    Jun 17, 2014
    Raynham, MA
    I'm looking for some ideas. I need to keep the Wife happy so I can continue to go play in the dirt. (Not really, but if she's happy, the whole trip is much happier)

    Problem Statement:
    The wife wants her Iced Coffee when we go camping. We currently camp with an electric cooler run off batteries/solar. We don't use / pack ice with us. Typical trip for us is Friday to Sunday (Weekend Warriors!). We have a 4 day trip once a year. We can cold brew the coffee, that's not the problem. The Problem is the final step requires ICE.

    Solutions:
    1. Buy / Bring Ice with me in a well insulated cooler. (I really hate bringing another cooler just for this)
    2. Bring Ice in Double walled vacuum cup, and leave it in our current cooler.
    3. Get a 1000w inverter (currently we are inverterless) and plug in a traditional Ice maker into it. (I'm a 100watt panel, with a Group 24 battery. I'd step it up to a Group 27 if I attempted this)
    Does anyone have opinions on the above options? Anyone got some other ideas?
     
  2. PopUpSteve

    PopUpSteve Administrator

    17,591
    786
    Dec 22, 2002
    Malvern, PA
    New wife?????
    Definitely easier than option #3.

    Just get a small cooler for just ice.
     
  3. tombiasi

    tombiasi Well-Known Member

    4,690
    530
    Sep 1, 2012
    Northwestern New Jersey
    Sometimes you just have to accept that when you go camping you don't get all the things you have at home.
     
    xxxapache, tfischer and gladecreekwy like this.
  4. jmkay1

    jmkay1 2004 Fleetwood/Coleman Utah

    3,706
    797
    Oct 10, 2013
    Northern Virginia
    That's kind of why I ended up sticking with electrical sites when I have mom and my niece come. They just can't accept less for even the short duration. It's frustrating when you prefer the more out of the way spots but with their power hungry devices and their need of the finer things, I had to give in. The good thing, in my situation, I can get out by myself and do my own thing on some trips too. So I still get my wish/desire too.

    Only thing I can think of is a small generator to power the ice maker on an as needed basis. Unless she is like my mom and drinks the stuff like water. Then you may be stuck listening to the generator a whole lot more than an hour.
     
    Sjm9911 and J Starsky like this.
  5. SteveP

    SteveP Well-Known Member

    1,071
    213
    May 21, 2015
    We use option one, but have a little more room than you do and our trips are quite a bit longer. I still think it's your best bet. A small six pack cooler loaded with ice should easily make it through a weekend if it's protected from direct sun and not left in a closed TV. I haven't used this one but it looks like what I'd want.

    I know people who keep ice in a double walled bottle in their 12 volt compressor fridge. I've tried it but that's a very limited amount of ice. Also, you didn't say you have a 12 volt compressor fridge so it sounds kind of iffy to me. It might work better in your 3 way, if it keeps good cold. And it's pretty much break even with the option one price wise unless you already have the bottle.

    I think you'll need to go beyond 1 gp27 for option 3 unless you only run the inverter when you want ice. But then you have to wait for the ice to freeze. The most expensive option by far.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2019
  6. roybraddy

    roybraddy Well-Known Member

    1,774
    495
    Mar 23, 2016
    King George, Virginia
    How many watts does one of those ICE MAKERS from WALMART need... I'm guessing around 200 watts @ 120VAC... My 2KW generator will run that... They say you can get a tray of ice in around 6 minutes... ???

    I normally run my 2KW generator every morning when allowed for around three hours to re-charge my batteries back up from their 90% charge state to the 90% charge state... Might as well make some ice during that same time frame hehe...

    I want to look into one of those for my off-grid camping...

    WALMARTS sells then for $80 to $120....

    Roy Ken
    [​IMG]
     
  7. Shaman1

    Shaman1 Well-Known Member

    1,331
    162
    May 13, 2011
    Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
    I think you are better off bringing the extra cooler. Here's why: My DW has to have her Diet Coke the same way. Here's what I learned from having a Magic Chef counter top ice maker.
    1. How rapidly it makes ice is dependent on how cold the water is to start and the ambient temperature.
    2. It does not store ice so, you either use it as it's made or have to be able to store it.
    3. A small cooler (like my Igloo marine) doesn't take up much more storage space.
    4. I can buy or bring from home a lot of ice for $120. So I have never taken it in the pup and only used it once in the hybrid.
     
  8. mpking

    mpking Well-Known Member

    1,065
    178
    Jun 17, 2014
    Raynham, MA
    Batching up a bunch of replies.

    1. No new wife. Dealer's not giving me a fair trade.
    2. Yes we can do without, but honestly, how hard is it to figure out an easy way to get ice?
    3. No generator. Most of our camping is at state parks with no hookups.
    4. Never thought of a new "small cooler". We've got 3 or 4 small cheapies, but they only hold ice like 6 hours.
    5. Yes, we have a compressor based 60 Qt cooler. Single zone, so it's usually at 34 degrees. I have "Many" double wall drink containers. We collected quite a few before we found one's that we actually like. Heck, we even have an Themos bottle that looks like it could double as a sledgehammer.
    6. We'd probably only use the inverter for ice, but I listed it as the third option cause it sounds technically risky.
    7. Per this guy: https://www.thegoodsurvivalist.com/...s-when-the-power-goes-out-or-off-grid-living/ " It needs 800 watts for 1/10 of a second to turn on, and after that runs on 90 watts per hour."

    I'm thinking we'll try the double wall drink container. I can actually test that in my basement. Just plug the fridge in and throw some ice in there. See if it makes it 3 days.
    That fails, I think the cooler is the next option. Same amount of storage space as the Ice Maker.
    I think the Ice Maker while camping is impressive as hell, but who am I trying to impress?

    I just like to look at all the options before I make a purchase decision. I don't think I would have thought of getting an "upgraded" small cooler. Sometimes you can't get out of your own thought processes.
     
  9. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Well-Known Member

    833
    539
    May 28, 2018
    California
    Since you have the drink containers, try them and see how long the ice will last. If it's only a day or two short of your trip, you might be able to make a "deal" with your wife - "- can get you ice for 3 of the 4 days, so on the way home we'll stop at a coffee place for you".

    If it won't last that long, i'd go with the new cooler. But make a deal that you get to buy yourself a new tool, etc. For the same price as the new cooler. Then buy an expensive cooler. :)
     
  10. Sjm9911

    Sjm9911 Well-Known Member

    1,984
    792
    May 31, 2018
    Nj
    I got a new Coleman x tream cooler, on the you tube vids it did ok with ice. I would just pick up a bag midway through the trip. Usally someplace around.
     
  11. bearman512

    bearman512 Well-Known Member

    1,180
    53
    Apr 17, 2010
    Albuquerque NM
    I have a 60Qt Norcold fridge. It has one small compartment above the compressor that I put eggs and things I don't want to freeze. In the main compartment I us a 1.5 Gal plastic tub filled will ice that was stored in the my chest freezer overnight. Place it on the bottom of the cooler and anything else on top of it, set temp at 30 this is what I do and it works well without freezing the food and will work over the weekend. I still put frozen meat in the bottom also or stack your favorite barley drink next to it.[:D]
    [​IMG]
     
  12. 1380ken

    1380ken Well-Known Member

    1,750
    325
    Nov 7, 2013
    Mass
    I would take a block of ice and wrap it in leather. Dig a hole about 2' deep. Bring a bag of play sand and bury the ice block in the hole with play sand on top. It should stay frozen for a week.
     
  13. nineoaks2004

    nineoaks2004 Every meal is a picnic and every Day is a holiday

    5,674
    1,991
    Oct 15, 2006
    Graceville, Florida
    Hey my other brother Roy I have had one for a long time and love it, it makes 21 lbs in a day, and I usually give ice away when I go to leave. I do carry an extra cooler to hold the ice as I don't like the fishy smell from the other cooler as I usually put fish in it :) (hopefully):)
     
  14. roybraddy

    roybraddy Well-Known Member

    1,774
    495
    Mar 23, 2016
    King George, Virginia
    How many WATTS is your ICE MAKER rated at using 120VAC... I keep forgetting to look at one at WALMART...

    Roy Ken
     
  15. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Well-Known Member

    833
    539
    May 28, 2018
    California
    I have to point out that getting ice halfway through a trip is not always available. I have one campground that is a 20 mile drive to the nearest store. That drive takes over an hour each way. I'd have to fill up the fuel tank every time I went to get ice.
     
  16. xxxapache

    xxxapache Well-Known Member

    2,543
    610
    Jul 30, 2008
    I make it in my freezer....lol
     
    neighbormike likes this.
  17. nineoaks2004

    nineoaks2004 Every meal is a picnic and every Day is a holiday

    5,674
    1,991
    Oct 15, 2006
    Graceville, Florida
    1.7 -2.0 amps 115 VAC, I have no problem running it on my small genny which is 2500 w, I just used it while we had no power for 9 days after the Hurricane. I use the big genny for the house.
     
  18. roybraddy

    roybraddy Well-Known Member

    1,774
    495
    Mar 23, 2016
    King George, Virginia
    I didn't think it was very much... Gonna pick one up from WALMART and see how to add it to my off-road camping setup... Should have got one a few months back as WALMART had them on sale for $60 or so... I'll be satisfied if I can make some ICE in a few minutes Generator run time... I don't think the cubes are going to be very big in those ice makers however...

    I already have one of those squeeze hand pumps to get gas out of my truck tank and fill my portable gas can for the generator when needed... Think my generator runs around 6 hours or so on a gallon of gas... Usually I don't run out gas on my short trips....

    Been heading back into town somewhere for quick replenish of supplies about ever three days... Ice and a Big Mac haha...

    Roy Ken
    [​IMG]
     
  19. nineoaks2004

    nineoaks2004 Every meal is a picnic and every Day is a holiday

    5,674
    1,991
    Oct 15, 2006
    Graceville, Florida
     
  20. tenttrailer

    tenttrailer Art & Joyce - Columbus, O

    2,898
    189
    Jul 18, 2013
    Thornville, OH
    Fill a small/midsize cooler with ice before you leave, or spend about $2 for a small bag of ice to fill the coller. Cover the cooler with a towel and keep it in the shade. It should hold the ice for 3-4 days
     

Share This Page