Any experience with dry ice in ice boxes?

Submitted: Sunday, May 30, 2004 at 22:00
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G'day folks

Aside from using an Engle or whatever may of you also have ice boxes for carrying extras frozen or whatever. Realising it is -80 degrees and frozen CO2 and just evaporates as it melts. It should keep any contants frozen while the ice is still present.

- Do any friends use dry ice for storage or have any experience for the keeping of food frozen with dry ice?
- What percentage should you expect to have as your storage medium should it be +/- 20% of volume?

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Reply By: Des Lexic - Sunday, May 30, 2004 at 22:08

Sunday, May 30, 2004 at 22:08
John, haven't used dry ice for years but a couple of tips.
Wrap dry ice in six sheets of newspaper. It will last longer.
Don't let it get wet
Be very careful handling it. Never touch it with bare skin. It burns!!!!!!!
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Follow Up By: Member - JohnR (Vic) - Sunday, May 30, 2004 at 22:26

Sunday, May 30, 2004 at 22:26
Des, thanks for that I reckon the newspaper is a good start as it would absorb any moisture too. I am not sure of the life of modern plastics with it either but am wondering the life too of the ice.

I have seen freeze branding too Des if you want any hairs white in the future. Gloves are in our kit in both doors for the Nissan. Fur lined for the passenger side pair - good for cooking pots too.

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Follow Up By: Des Lexic - Sunday, May 30, 2004 at 22:42

Sunday, May 30, 2004 at 22:42
We would buy it by weight and sorry but can't remember quantities. It would last 4-6 days in warm weather, longer in cooler times.
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Follow Up By: Nudenut - Monday, May 31, 2004 at 09:53

Monday, May 31, 2004 at 09:53
err
It doesnt burn, it freezes the skin there-by killing the tissue...and
that is if it doesnt stick to your skin and you pull your own skin off when you attempt to remove the CO2 pellet or block.

either way it will be dead tissue

My experience is... co2 does not last very long
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Follow Up By: Member - JohnR (Vic) - Monday, May 31, 2004 at 11:45

Monday, May 31, 2004 at 11:45
Nudenut it depends how long the contact is. If the contact is brief the burn does not kill tissue. The timings can be critical though. It can change the colour of hair so the output of the follicle is white - once again Nudenut dependent if there is a follicle;-) With cattle it does not always change colour. One guy I know has quickly put a hand in liquid N to retreive a watch. :-( Liquid N is m u c h colder

With the softness of alien skin or scales others may have more experience than I...........................................
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Reply By: Rosco - Bris. - Monday, May 31, 2004 at 06:30

Monday, May 31, 2004 at 06:30
Johnno

Get your self a sheet of polystyrene (the lid off a brocoli box from your veggy man will do the trick). Put it in the bottom under the dry ice - stops it from cracking the esky liner.

Put the dry ice in the middle (wrapped in paper and in a plastic garbage bag. Fill around the dry ice with wet ice (sheets are best but party ice will do), up to level with the top of the dry ice.

Use the remaining space for your deep freeze. The wet ice will make the dry ice last longer and you can use it when the dry is gone.

If you're in soft ground (the beach eg) and it's hot (Xmas) it will all last longer if you bury the esky. Open the lid as little as possible.

You normally buy the ice in day sized blocks .... 4 days, 6 days etc.

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Follow Up By: Member - JohnR (Vic) - Monday, May 31, 2004 at 07:46

Monday, May 31, 2004 at 07:46
Rosco,

Thanks for the thinking response. Am interested in the thought of putting the ice around the packed dry ice and making it last longer.

Surely a larger lump of dry ice would do that bearing in mind I will be trying to keep frozen food in that state?
Brine ice better for that too if i was to keep wet ice around it.
Yes, planning to open no more than once a day for a short time.

I have talked to a guy who used to catch yabbies years ago and freeze them with dry ice, to get some clues. Cover the top and all. He used a freezer chest though with old style insulation.

Have talked to the freeze branding guy too - he just knows he will use it over a week and metho to transfer the cold to metal. Preserve as much as he can, but never expects any to last too long.

Might buy some this week to try.
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Follow Up By: Bundyman - Wednesday, Jun 02, 2004 at 00:23

Wednesday, Jun 02, 2004 at 00:23
John,

Your dead right about covering the dry ice with wet ice - an old trick I've been using for years on fishing trips. The only way dry ice melts (boils/evaporates) is contact with air etc thus the saying to wrap the dry ice in paper. However by covering it with wet ice this will partly melt before being refrozen by the dry ice thus fairly well sealing it from the air. The wet ice also acts as a buffer to help prevent freezing things solid. This method will usually give you an extra day or two depending on the block size and how often you put warm stuff in (beer).

Cheers, Hughesy
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Reply By: Member - Rohan K - Monday, May 31, 2004 at 09:40

Monday, May 31, 2004 at 09:40
John, I've used dry ice in (what we now consider) a cheap, standard esky. It lasted 8 days on Fraser in summer. It was well shaded on only opened infrequently. We used only the dry ice. It was wrapped in foil and newspaper.

Do not let anything come in direct contact with the ice as it can "burn" food stuffs as easily as it does you. Freeze everything before putting it in with the ice. Do not put drinks within cooee of the ice or they will freeze solid very quickly and perhaps burst the container.

In the old days, the general rule of volumes was 40% of the esky space for normal ice and 20% for dry ice.
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Follow Up By: Member - JohnR (Vic) - Monday, May 31, 2004 at 10:57

Monday, May 31, 2004 at 10:57
Rohan, thanks for that. It is useful to know the length of time to evaporate it totally. If it can meant a 8-10 day span to keep frozen stuff frozen then top up with water ice later it should make life a little easier for some things.

I am aware for the burn factor with dry ice and also liquid N too. It is probably easier to get that than dry ice round here too.

Opening a planned issue looks good too only to open once a day....... Reckoned to keep some meat in it already frozen and parhaps the dry ice at each end.

Thanks again
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Follow Up By: Member - JohnR (Vic) - Monday, May 31, 2004 at 11:13

Monday, May 31, 2004 at 11:13
Rohan comes as CO2 snow at $1.98 a Kg and I can get it next Monday 7 am. Would mean frozen stuff there for over a week which would be pretty good. Is not a standard esky is 40 and 45 mm wall thickness. Will see I guess.........
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Follow Up By: Member - Rohan K - Monday, May 31, 2004 at 14:33

Monday, May 31, 2004 at 14:33
John, I forgot to mention, while I can't remember the weight of the block we got, it was about the size of 2 house bricks - a bit smaller, maybe.

When we added water ice, on the evening of day 8, the bit left was the size of can of drink and there was still stuff frozen in the bottom of the esky.

A better esky would obviously keep it lasting longer. Our EvaKool keep block water-ice for between 5 and 10 days, depending on the usual factors. I reckon I'd easily get 2 weeks from dry ice.
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Reply By: Truckster (Vic) - Monday, May 31, 2004 at 11:19

Monday, May 31, 2004 at 11:19
Used to deliver loads of the stuff from Botany to Newcastle.

with the Ice and the early morning air comming into contact, the vapour from under the lid tarps, people used to freak out yelling and pointing!

Good stuff, we always used for our Xmas bbqs at Liquid air! keeps stuff cold for days.
as others have said dangerousbleepto touch, but well wrapped in foil should be kewl.
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Reply By: Member - Bradley- Monday, May 31, 2004 at 14:40

Monday, May 31, 2004 at 14:40
Hi John, i tried some last year in a small coleman esky, got the pellet style dry ice from supergas in melb, put about 25% in the base, covered it with a sheet of cardboard allowing about an inch gap around the edge, and stacked the frozen meat etc. on top. Worked a treat and lasted about 5 days but was opened a few times a day, but i tell ya, i have never seen snags that hard before !!!!

I like the idea of using polystyrene under it and using some bagged ice for extra thermal load after the dry ice has gone.

I found it great as the frozen gear didn't get wet or moist, but it is fairly expensive. cost me about $20 for the small amount i used..
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