32-3 how long does ice last in icebox?

Puget sailor

Junior Member
Question for anyone who has experience. How long does block ice last in the 32-3 icebox? It seems to be plenty big enough to hold quite a bit of ice, so I'm wondering how many days it might last and stay usefully cold? Does running the engine change it much? My engine bay is pretty well ventilated with a fan, but it still warms up the surroundings which includes the icebox sides if I'm not mistaken. I'm hoping Ericson did a decent job in building and insulating the box, but appreciate any insights. Also, do people put ice up on the interior shelves or just pile it up in the bottom, or what? I could see installing refrigeration at some point, but not this season.
 

frick

Member III
My old E29, 1971... I would put in a 50 pound block, and then dump 40 pounds of cubes over the top of the block. This would rapid cook the icebox and I could expect the ice box to stay cook for 12 to 14 days. What really eats up ice fast is cooling down warm cans or bottles of our favorite beverages. Use a separate cooler for that to get you main ice box to last a long time.
 

trickdhat

Member III
Blogs Author
On our 35-3 I can get about 4 days, but we aren't careful. We have two kids who are in there all the time grabbing snacks and drinks. We've used dry ice combined with a few bags of cube ice and that seems to stretch a few extra days. When I replaced the ice box drain hose, I had to remove the insulation and found that it's was about 10 inches thick at the bottom. We replaced it with spray foam and havent noticed a difference in performance.
 

Puget sailor

Junior Member
50 lbs!? I had no idea ice came in blocks that large, but looking online, I see they do. If I can get 4 days with a bunch of block ice in there, that will do. Good idea to cool down any dense stuff ahead of time, frick. I have a pretty good not terribly expensive portable ice box which I can use for either transporting ice to the boat, or pre-cooling stuff in crushed ice. Just need to find space for it, perhaps in the cockpit locker with fenders and perhaps a small outboard. Glad that it seems Ericson was not chintzy with the insulation. I suppose if I had anything really spoilage prone, a small ice box within the icebox might also work, but for my next 4 day voyage I'm travelling with a vegetarian, so that will help, since it's mostly meat I really worry about. I suppose on that front loading frozen stuff would also make things a bit safer. Can't wait to get this thing going.
 

RCsailfast

Member II
We pre cool the ice boxes for about 3 days before we leave. When traveling we use 1 gallon frozen water bottles in the big box along with the re freezable jell packs and supplement with loose ice till the box is full after adding all of the food. Lasts through a long weekend easy if you are fast getting stuff out. 4+days
The small box is dedicated to drinks only. Loose ice to pack around everything, that was cooled or frozen at home. I try to keep a full bag of ice so we can have mixed drinks at night. Drinks stay cold over 3 days and ice for 2+. If we reload with warm drinks no chance for ice to survive.
 

Puget sailor

Junior Member
Wait, what is this “small ice box” of which you speak? Is that the hatch on the left side of the stove? I just assumed it was simple storage since the lid on mine is not insulated like the large one on the right of the range is. Hmmm. I’ll have to look to see if it has a drain too?
 
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