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Dream Time anchored in Bora Bora

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Recent Entries

The new fridge/freezer unit

Drainage tubes have been installed and the cupboard prepared for the unit and insulation The new fridge/freezer unit is in place The new fridge/freezer unit is in place Detail of interior The new fridge/freezer unit is in place
The new fridge/freezer unit is in place Exterior paneling has been installed - insulation is ready to pour Polyurethane foam has been poured around the unit Note the thicker insulation around the freezer compartment Counter foundation and lid recess in place
Fridge/freezer openings Ready to receive teak counter Detail of lid recess    

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Cap'n Neville Day 2,663 - New Zealand (36° 37S 174° 47E)
09:25hrs - September 14th 2014
A Cool Winter Project - Part Two

We're on shore leave, but the good folks at Brin Wilson Boat Builders are in the midst of installing our new fridge/freezer unit. As outlined in Part One of this project, we decided to build a custom unit, rather than simply installing a new off-the-shelf evaporator plate, as we wanted to maximize the space and durability within the fridge/freezer compartments and, more importantly, replace the thirty-three year old insulation.

Our new unit has been fabricated from stainles s steel with coolant pipes wrapped around its exterior walls. The unit has been built to ensure that both the freezer and fridge compartments maintain the correct temperature balance (a swanky new digital thermostat will make it easier to control/regulate, too), and we designed the most versatile (slidable / adjustable - to any height / removable) shelves that will give us the greatest storage options - which is important, as you never quite now what provisions will be available when you're world cruising.

How to best insulate a fridge on a sailboat is a topic that some debate passionately. We're keeping it simple: we chose a closed-cell foam (to eliminate issues of water penetration), and an insulation that would be durable, impact resistant, would expand to fit every void within the cabinet, and that would have an R-value (thermal resistance) high enough to keep the heat out and the cold in.

We're using Norski polyurethane pour-in foam, which will give us an R-value around the fridge of approximately 25-30, and 35-40 around the freezer - plenty for the tropical climes we love to cruise in.

We've had a 12-volt, air cooled compressor on Dream Time for 14 years, which in 2010 we upgraded to a BD50. The compressor is housed in the sail locker (under the starboard cockpit seat, with a duct rigged to draw cooler air in from the cabin rather than the locker (which gets hot when the engine is running). The system is simple, flexible and it works well for us.

Phase three of this project will be the fabrication of a new counter top, lids, seals and a custom extension to give us a little more surface area.


What's New

Click here to read our story in the September issue of Cruising World magazine
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Read our story in the September issue of Cruising World magazine >


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Finding our balance in the windy city
103 floors above the city of Chicago

Quick Fix: 41° 52' N / 87° 38' W
Shore leave: Chicago
September 7th 2014 (day 2,656)

Sea Legs!
We're back in the U.S. and currently finding balance in the windy city of Chicago on the 103rd floor of the Willis Tower. After 3 manic months of boat projects, we're taking a little shore leave to see family, friends and sponsors. As we'll be sailing up to Vanuatu, over to Australia and into Asia when we return to NZ, we don't know when we'll have this opportunity again. While we're back in America we'll be stocking-up on gear for Dream Time - a starter motor, impellers, gaskets, filters, cetol... and we'll be making a few road trips, too. In 5 weeks, while Catherine relaxes in Florida, I'll be doing a little cruising on two wheels - touring across Arizona and Utah with my brother on Harley Davidsons. The idea came after renting mopeds in the Cook Islands last year - epic!

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