Space issues for trip around Oz

Submitted: Tuesday, Jan 26, 2010 at 23:42
ThreadID: 75524 Views:3466 Replies:13 FollowUps:9
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Hi all.

At the moment we have a 40lt Engel which we use for food for the two of us and is ample when we go away bush camping for a week or so at a time. We also take the esky for Beer and water which is fine on short trips.

So my question is; we are going away for four months and are thinking of buying the 18lt waeco -Fridge/Freezer to use mostly for drinks during the day but also incase we catch some fish we can freeze it and also make Ice for drinks.

However if it is on freeze what are we going to use for keeping the beer cold?
Should we take a small esky too?
We have a 100 series landy and are planning on taking out the back seats to make more room but we are taking a dog too.

Just wondering if anyone has any ideas or suggestions ?


P.s. Will be taking honda gennie to supply power.
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Reply By: Member - Dunworkin (WA) - Tuesday, Jan 26, 2010 at 23:57

Tuesday, Jan 26, 2010 at 23:57
Hi Lindsey, there are a few factors to the equation, you say what you have at the moment is good for a week at a time so therfore you will be able to be out in the bush for that time. If you are near a town after that top up your stocks and off again. I f you get fish, the freezer would be great but you say you also have a Honda gennie, is room not going to be a problem, how active is your doggy in the vehicle? How much room does he need? Engel, Waeco Fridge/Freezer gennie and a dog, room would be my worry even with the back seat out.



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AnswerID: 401240

Reply By: ob - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 00:36

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 00:36
Have you considered leaving doggy with friends or rellies while you are away?
We do not currently have a pouch having just had to have our little companion of 14 years put to sleep. I say this not to try and solicate any sympathy but we would never subject our dog or ourselves to the discomfort and restrictions of travelling long distances in a fairly cramped environment. Most national parks do not allow domestic animals and I have heard of many cases of dogs picking up poison bates. I have never seen it personally but apparently it is a horrible way for an animal to die.

Just a thought

Cheers ob
AnswerID: 401243

Follow Up By: Member - Nathan & Lyndsey (WA) - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 01:12

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 01:12
Hi ob.

Thanks for the reply. We have considered leaving him at home but don't have anyone that is able to care for him and leaving him in a kennel for four months would be too cruel.
We too just had to put our other dog to sleep just this past November which is one of the reasons why we have decided to take him. Originally we were happy to leave the two of them together with the house sitter because atleast they had each other.
I really don't know what else to do, he just lost his best mate in November and now we're going to leave him with a stranger for four months? Not really fair on the little fella.

Thanks again ob.

FollowupID: 670522

Reply By: disco driver - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 01:14

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 01:14
Hi Lyndsey,
Just as a matter of good manners, could you please not use the term "Landy" unless your vehicle is a "Land Rover".
Calling a "Cruiser" a "Landy" is disparaging to both makes and sometimes gets nasty responses from Land-Roverphiles like me who object to japanese stuff being called Landy's when clearly they are "Cruisers, tojo's or Landcruisers or even Troopy's or Hilux's.


Disco.(with tongue firmly placed in left cheek).
AnswerID: 401245

Follow Up By: Member - Nathan & Lyndsey (WA) - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 01:20

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 01:20
Hi Disco,

Woops !!! didn't even realise I did it. Will be more careful next time. :)

FollowupID: 670523

Reply By: Leroy - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 07:37

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 07:37
I have a 40l Engel and found it perfect for 2 Adults and 2 kids on our Kimberley trip last year. I don't know how many beers you want to have a day but I found I kept 4 in there and replaced as I pulled one out.
Whenever I caught fish we all ate it so no need for a freezer but it will keep for days in the fridge.
I just find at the end of the day you really don't need second fridges but the esky comes in handy for keeping fruit and vedge cooler.

AnswerID: 401255

Reply By: wato35 - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 07:49

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 07:49
We have a 40 litre Engel and travelled around Oz for 6 months last year. We brought a Two-Zone for our Engel, which gave us 60 litres in total. You can use the bottom as a freezer and the top as a fridge, or a fridge and a crisper.
We sometimes had 10 meals for 2 and plenty of cold ones.
AnswerID: 401256

Follow Up By: Wilko - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 13:40

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 13:40
Hi Nathan & Lyndsey,

I 2nd a 2 zone but I hooked up a computer fan (12v) just under the 2 zone and it improved the performance.

The 2 zone will work as is but moving the air around allowed me to turn the dial back about 1 which would have to save one battery power.

cheers Wilko
FollowupID: 670603

Follow Up By: wato35 - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 14:25

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 14:25

Can you give me more details about the 12V fan.

Thanks Wato
FollowupID: 670614

Follow Up By: Wilko - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 15:27

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 15:27
Hi Wato,

I got a computor cooling fan (which are available from nearly all computor shops) and mounted it under the 2 zone basket.

It basically moves the air from the engel into the 2 zone. Mine blows the air in but it would prob work ok to suck the air out too.

I wired it up to the engels power wire (so that it would come on when the Engel was on) .

I was running my engel on 5 to get the 2 zone cool enough(on really hot days), now I can run it on 3 1/2 or 4 and get the same temp.

I think there are threads on here that explains it better then me.

Cheers Wilko
FollowupID: 670622

Follow Up By: Tenpounder (SA) - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 15:56

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 15:56
Hi there. For what its worth, I went the other way, and have a sheet of marine ply in the bottom of the upper basket of the TwoZone to reduce the air circulation. This way, we have frozen food in the bottom (around minus 14 degrees or lower), and cold food in the top (around 4 or 5 degrees). But at ambient over 40, this requires the Engel to be set fairly high, say 5 as Wilko says.
But surely with a fan the temperature would tend to equalise between top and bottom???? Any comments??
FollowupID: 670629

Follow Up By: Wilko - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 16:20

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 16:20
Hi Chris,

My two zone would sit at around the 1-3c and the engel would sit around minus 6-8c.

Cheers Wilko

FollowupID: 670633

Reply By: Teraa - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 09:15

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 09:15
I'd say the little freezer would be handy to say freeze of some cold packs for a fold down esky for your beer, nothing compares to beer on ice though. But a fold up esky should save some space.
AnswerID: 401262

Reply By: Member - John and Val - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 09:43

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 09:43
Hi Lyndsey,

We have a 30l Waeco and for a 3 month trip (2 of us) have got by quite satisfactorily by running it quite cold so that things in the bottom are frozen. We also used an esky - each day cold things, beer and frozen meat to thaw came out of the fridge into the esky keeping it quite cool. So long as you rotate food carefully this system works well.

In our experience taking things along because hey "might come in handy" is a recipe for added clutter and weight as very often they are not actually needed. Keep it simple.


J and V
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AnswerID: 401266

Reply By: Member - Steve R (NSW) - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 13:19

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 13:19
Hi Nathan & Lindsay

Perhaps you might consider trading up to an Engel 60 litre fridge freezer combo. I bought one of these 4 years ago and have found having a separate freezer compartment and fridge in the one unit is ideal. It has served us well and given us plenty of flexibility. We have found that with this fridge there is always some room in either compartment (especially for beer!) to add items or shift some from freezer to fridge or vice versa.


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AnswerID: 401296

Reply By: Member - Graham H (QLD) - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 19:42

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 19:42
Well firstly putting your dog in a kennel would be doing it a favour.

We had two little house dogs and went overseas for several months.

My wife was worried about how they would get on.

When we came back they were reluctant to leave the kennels and whilst they

were happy to see us went away playing with their newfound friends.

would never subject a dog to a holiday like that as the heat,flies and ticks would be bad enough without the 1040 baits lying around.

Secondly we have been on the road for a year and have a 6o lt Waeco.

It freezes in the large section and cools in the small one.

We buy meat and frozen stuff in bulk and it keeps it good for long periods.

Had one of the new 32 litre ones with the battery and it was useless for what we wanted.


AnswerID: 401361

Follow Up By: Member - Morry H (WA) - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 21:45

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 21:45
We have just spent 13 months traveling around australia. The only trouble we had was in Darwin NT. They are definitely anti dogs in fact even their tourist bureau was anti good service. Because I only wanted info they were quite rude to us.
I suppose if we were wanting to take a tour they would have been more friendly. You cannot take dogs into any national parks.

Depending on where you are going. Check the info on the caravan parks and forget all Big 4 parks as they do not take dogs.

There is a dog friendly book that you can buy and it states all the parks where you can take a dog. We had no trouble at all as I said except darwin although the tumbling waters caravan park was really brilliant. It is about 20+ k's out of darwin.
We have a blue heeler and did a lot of free camping everywhere. In fact we had more trouble with people with generators. We would park way out away from the main camp and someone would always park right on our doorstep and then start up the generator. We were solar powered and avoided upsetting anyone that way. It is a great option to have solar power. We could camp out for more than a week at a time.
So I suggest you take your mate with you. He will apreciate it rather than left with strangers, some pets willl not eat for several days as they fret. Good luck and have a great trip.
FollowupID: 670703

Reply By: The Boss - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 19:53

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 19:53
I would have thought that a dog would love a trip like this. As long as you keep its water up, and let it have a good stretch frequently it will love it. A dog spends all its day sleeping anyway unless its a working dog, make ya mate up a comfy bed, with ample room to move about, preferably just behind the main seats so he can see forward and out the back doors, and so he is close to his masters and the air con.

Honestly, your dog will love it. Unless of course it gets car sick.

No way is it cruel, cruel is being taken away from its master for months i reckon.

Install fridges and gear in back, install cargo barrier with rear seat removed and build pooch up a nice bed underneath gear that wont be needed frequently, like spares,tools,oils etc and bobs ya uncle.

AnswerID: 401365

Reply By: Shaker - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 19:58

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 19:58
You will save a lot of space in the fridge if you vacuum pack as much as you can, particularly meat, in which case it will just about halve the required space.
AnswerID: 401367

Follow Up By: Shaker - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 20:01

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 20:01
I forgot to mention that we did exactly what you are thinking of on our recent Outback trip, Engel as the fridge & a Waeco as a smaller (31L) freezer.
Came home with the Engel as fridge & the Waeco as a dirty laundry hamper, it lasted about 10 days!

FollowupID: 670677

Reply By: Ups and Downs - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 21:22

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 21:22

For over a year we had our 40L Engel running as a freezer for meat, ice cream etc as well as freezing 2 x 2 litre plastic milk containers for use in the fibreglass 'esky' used as the fridge.

Swapped the 2 litre containers over every day and that was great for keeping the 'fridge' contents as cold as we needed. (2 in the fridge, 2 in the Engel)

Only up north in 45-50c temperatures did we need to buy ice, otherwise it worked well.


AnswerID: 401382

Reply By: Member - Morry H (WA) - Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 21:56

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010 at 21:56
Regarding the fridge/freezer. Just put a damp towel in above the frozen food.
the dampness freezes in towel. then put beers or drinks on top. We did this for 13 months.
Another tip It is best to keep the fridge full if you take something out put something back. Even if no food just put clothes in to keep it full. Fridges work best when full.
AnswerID: 401390

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