counter top ice cube maker or block ice from home

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counter top ice cube maker or block ice from home

Postby ae6black » Wed Jun 13, 2018 8:39 pm

I am sure there is a thread about this, I just haven't seen it. Has anyone used one of these counter top ice cube makers for making ice for your cooler while camping in an area with shore power? Has anyone found any advantage of these little machines over just packing some block ice from the freezer back home? If so what brand and model do you recommend that you've had good luck with?

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Re: counter top ice cube maker or block ice from home

Postby KTM_Guy » Wed Jun 13, 2018 9:52 pm

We had one, We were doing a kitchen remodel and the ice maker book in the fridge. Didn't want to bring in the new fridge with all the work that needed to still be done so got one of the counter ice makers. It worked for us but I think we got it in Oct and used it for 5-6 months through the colder months. No way would it have worked for us in the summer months. It wouldn't keep up with the use we would need. When we were done with it I gave it to my brother and he used it at his work. It broke shortly after.

We just had a cheap one, and on a good day it might make 10 pounds of ice. It was rated at something like 24 pounds a day but you would need to babysit the thing around the clock to get anywhere close to that.

I wouldn't go that route for camping. Now we freeze Ice tea in a few 1 qt containers and freeze a bunch of our water bottles before we leave. And add a block of ice. I had a nice ice pick to make some ice chips for drinks. Worked great but I lost the ice pick.

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Re: counter top ice cube maker or block ice from home

Postby working on it » Thu Jun 14, 2018 11:10 am

KTM_Guy wrote:... Now we freeze Ice tea in a few 1 qt containers and freeze a bunch of our water bottles before we leave. And add a block of ice.... Todd
  • I was contemplating the ice-maker, too, prior to my last trip, but went the same route that KTM_Guy did, and froze four gallon jugs of ice tea (peach, sweet of course). I found that I could only fit two into my big cooler, surrounded by unfrozen 16.9 oz. water bottles (I used individual "sweet peach ice tea" mix packets) and bagged ice. I could not fit the gallon jugs into either of my two smaller coolers, so I left them in the freezer at home. The two I took with me, worked great, only defrosting on the second and third days (the weather was 50-56 degrees, though). They served their purpose, and lasted longer than I had bag ice (a;one) last before, under the same conditions.
  • I also considered using a mini-fridge, which I would use in my office between trips, but finally chose not to get one. The drawbacks to using one: enlarging the area in my galley to squeeze one in would still be too small for the necessary airflow around it, I would have to devote an inverter/battery to power it between locations where I could plug it into 120vac, and would have to store/use it in my office (where I could monitor and use it, between trips, and because we get frequent power interruptions in our area, to reset it). Another point against a mini-fridge in my trailer is that my heavy 4x8 has a stiffer suspension (my choice) than most, and the inner plumbing of the mini-fridge(s) has a known problem of leakage, after rough handling. Probably not up to absorbing pot-hole shocks, or just moving it regularly between house and garage (trailer is stored there).
  • My new plan for cooler usage {keeping my three present ones, until I can persuade my wife to let me get a Yeti-type cooler...she says I don't need another, with three in use, two more "new-ish" ones in a shed, and I just gave three others to a friend), is to freeze about 24-30? of the 16.9-20 oz water bottles in our chest freezer, two gallon jugs of tea (again), and fill around them with bagged ice, as usual (I never can find block ice, anyway). Only my small cooler I carry in my truck cab will have a few unfrozen pre-mixed tea bottles, for consumption on the road. At camp, I'll remove a couple of frozen water bottles at a time, to defrost prior to mixing-in the tea packets. That should work for my usual 3-4 day trips.
  • Meanwhile, my frozen foods Super-cooler (my attempt to create a home-made Yeti from two Igloo "Cubes", with added insulation), will get new freezer bags installed. I wasn't happy with the size & shape of my previous ice substitutes, which took too much of the limited space inside, so I bought these that should fit perfectly inside, creating an inner "core of cold", to keep my few perishables fresh for several days.
  • ice-substitute bags.jpg
    ice-substitute bags.jpg (106.07 KiB) Viewed 422 times
  • second cooler experiment.jpg
    second cooler experiment.jpg (174.66 KiB) Viewed 422 times
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Re: counter top ice cube maker or block ice from home

Postby Sparksalot » Thu Jun 14, 2018 11:46 am

One of my camping buddies has the countertop unit. It does struggle, but she only uses it to provide ice cubes for drinks. No way it would provide all the ice needed to keep your food cold.
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Re: counter top ice cube maker or block ice from home

Postby ae6black » Thu Jun 14, 2018 3:57 pm

that's what I needed to know. Thanks!

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Re: counter top ice cube maker or block ice from home

Postby daveesl77 » Fri Jun 15, 2018 7:06 am

We have the cheap, $110 igloo counter top from Walmart. Been using it for about 5 years. We can run it from our 1200 watt inverter. Depending on the temps and humidity, it can actually create more ice than we can use. During Hurricane Irma, we had ice, nobody had any for a week. We love the thing, it is noisy and heavy, but wow it just doesn't quit.

That said, we also make blocks of ice using the Gatorade 1 gallon jugs, They are rectangular and heavy plastic.

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