Chescold RC1180 - must it be perfectly flat?

Submitted: Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 11:38
ThreadID: 77083 Views:3059 Replies:6 FollowUps:6
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We have had one of these fridge freezer three way units for about 6 months. Use it on gas when we are camping in the scrub. Works very well IMHO, keeps management's champagne very cold. Someone told me though that they must be kept very flat - use a spirit level to level it every time he said. I have not used it on 12v whilst travelling but intend to over easter. Has anyone had any problem with using one while travelling - i guess up and down mountains etc is not really flat. Can anyone give me their opinion of the unit? Has anyone had problems with one? cheers pete
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Reply By: trainslux - Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 11:47

Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 11:47
Yes, keeping it level will allow the solution to work correctly, and not "flood" the areas where the solution seperates etc.

With regard to using in car on 12v, have good sized wire to the unit, ie 8gauge or 12gauge as a minimum size, so as to keep voltage drop to a minimum as they draw a constant 9amps on the 12v heating coil unit.
The jiggling of the car on highway, and flat roads actually helps the solution a bit, however if your travlling in the high country on steep roads, the fridge's system will be prone to flooding, and will not work.

We also added 2 socket 7 sized computer cpu fans under the rear cooling fins blowing upwards, they used 0.2 of an amp, but really helped in transferring heat from those cooling fins whilst traveling on 12v.
I secured them by using some spare computer wire from a damaged power supply unit, so as to reduce vibration, and make it easy to modify. Used them like twistties on the top of bread bags
Worked excellently for a month on the road.
Once you stop the motor, take fridge out, level it, and put it on gas.

AnswerID: 409890

Follow Up By: Member - Salt grinder - Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 13:42

Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 13:42
Ditto to the above comments. ALL fridges need good air circulation as they are transferring heat from inside to out and the heat MUST be removed from the motor area. The comp fans work well but also consider a partially opened window to keep the air moving out. Fridges, always have to work harder, thus producing more heat, the hotter the ambient temp . . . . . give them space & give them air.

Important also to unplug the unit when the engine shuts down . . . . you can install an ignition operated solenoid switch to the fridge power source if you wanted.

My unit worked well in the wagon on 12v but I was one to carry a small spirit level as my eye-sight gets a little squed after the 3rd stubbie.

An extra suggestion: depending on where the fridge is located in the wagon, if you have air con turned on and air outlets under the front seats for the normal comfort of rear seat passengers (it blows on their feet), pipe this up to the motor section of the fridge.
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FollowupID: 679849

Reply By: Goldfind (Dunsborough) - Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 11:50

Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 11:50
Hi Petengail,

I have the same unit, and I had an auto electrician set up the wiring using heavy duty wire with a 12 volt type plug fiited in the rear of the vehicle. These fridges drag a lot of power on 12 volt and it would be a mistake to try to run on a cigarette lighter style plug. Mine has been perfect in the cruiser on long trips and I have not had to worry too much about using a level.

Cheers Wayne.H
AnswerID: 409891

Follow Up By: petengail - Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 12:36

Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 12:36
thanks wayne - i had it wired by a auto electrician and he gave me enough wire so i can put it in the tub of the dual cab...
FollowupID: 679841

Reply By: Notso - Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 12:58

Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 12:58
I used these things for years whilst travelling in the bush, the main issue is that they are not off level for great lengths of time. Going up and down hills won't hurt it. Just make sure when you are parked up that it isn't at too extreme an angle.

Here are some FAQs

Absorption fridges FAQs
AnswerID: 409898

Reply By: MEMBER - Darian, SA - Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 13:06

Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 13:06
Level while static is quite important for good function, but a spirit level may be overkill - mine was always fine, judged by eye. While mobile on 12V, level is of course hard to maintain but it seems not to matter - the car's movement must keep the fluids stirring around. As others mentioned, a healthy power supply line is vital, but even then, 12V is only for maintaining the temperatures you have gained initially via 240V or gas.
AnswerID: 409899

Follow Up By: Road Warrior - Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 13:18

Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 13:18
My el-cheapo Repco 3 way has a small round spirit level built into the control panel and the manufacturer's blurb carries on at great length about making sure it is level.
FollowupID: 679843

Follow Up By: petengail - Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 17:40

Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 17:40
whats the el cheapo repco 3 way like? i was thinking about getting one to cool down the million stubbies i drink a day, and management's dozen of champers per day habit. then i could just use the other one for food? are they ok? i wouldnt expect them to freeze but dont mind spending 300 or so on a good drinkies fridge...
FollowupID: 679878

Reply By: kcandco - Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 19:27

Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 19:27

I found the easiest way to fit a spirit level is to buy one of the round ones, about 3cm across and only a few dollars. They have 3 small holes to screw in. Place a small amount of bluetac under the level. Then drill holes smaller than the small screws needed and gently screw into the required place. I have mine in the centre of the lid. By using the bluetack method you can set the spirit level up perfectly and I have found no problems with the level being knocked out of position once screwed down. I place the fridge on a known level floor, ie flat garage floor before fitting the level. That way as you screw the screws down you ca adjust them so that the level is perfectly centred while on the flat floor. This method is cheap, reliable and easy to do.

regards Kc
AnswerID: 409944

Reply By: lladoog52 - Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 20:19

Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 20:19
Pete, I agree with most of replies. We dragged one of these units in the back of our tray back across the Simpson Desert and it did not miss a beat. On 12 volt whilst travelling, switch over to gas for overnight stop. But must level
vehicle each night by digging hole in sand or building up sand. Performed just as good if not better than mates Engel.
AnswerID: 409955

Follow Up By: Member - Andrew L (QLD) - Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 21:35

Monday, Mar 22, 2010 at 21:35
How could that be a better performer than your mates Engle..?

You had to refill a gas cylinder at the end of the trip, he had free stored electricity each day he drove...
FollowupID: 679914

Follow Up By: lladoog52 - Tuesday, Mar 23, 2010 at 22:13

Tuesday, Mar 23, 2010 at 22:13
Andrew, I reckon a few COLD beers is worth a gas refill in the middle of the Simpson.
FollowupID: 680031

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