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Old 07-21-2009, 06:49 PM   #1
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Was driving to the airport the other day and stopped for gas.. went in and badabing... a 12v slow cooker (which I had been looking for for a while)... it fit in my bag so I got it... only 2 quarts but that's all I need, so now I have a little slow cooker which I can set in the sink underway and have a hot meal ready on arrival without wasting propane or having a burner going underway (which I hate)...

anyone know of any providers of other good 12v appliances... I'm in particular looking for a blender and an ice maker... I've found lots of "portable" icemakers but they are all still 110v...

thanks...
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Old 07-21-2009, 06:58 PM   #2
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to answer my own question at least in part. this place has a few 12v blenders http://www.sportsimportsltd.com/12volap.html

again, any input on an icemaker would be appreciated.
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Old 07-21-2009, 08:41 PM   #3
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to answer my own question at least in part. this place has a few 12v blenders http://www.sportsimportsltd.com/12volap.html

again, any input on an icemaker would be appreciated.
We have a countertop icemaker 120VAC, rated for 33 lbs/24 hrs. Though you can likely find a good 12V or 24V freezer, You may not find a small icemaker that is 12V or even 24V. They do draw quite a bit of power. Ours uses 150 or so watts constant while working and jumps up to 400 watts when pumping water and dumping the cubes into the basket. We run it on AC when we've got a reason to have another AC appliance or tool on requiring the generator or the genset to be used--we just are using the "excess" capacity of the generator or genset by making ice.... Else, we don't use it.

The cost of using it comes out to about 10 cent/lb if (for some reason) we'd turn on the small Honda generator just to make ice.
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Old 07-21-2009, 09:37 PM   #4
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yeah, I've seen the type you have I think... a lot of mixed reviews on quality. which brand do you have? how long have you had it? still works I presume?

I have both wind and solar and find my diverter making hot water quite often... would be great as I head south if I could hook my diverter up to an icemaker instead of my hot water heater...

If i can't find a 12v model I guess I'll have to upgrade my inverter, at the moment all I have is a 400w inverter for running my two laptops for work and chargine my cel phone... for some reason in my experience 12v cel chargers pretty quickly destroy the cel battery.
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Old 07-22-2009, 02:27 PM   #5
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yeah, I've seen the type you have I think... a lot of mixed reviews on quality. which brand do you have? how long have you had it? still works I presume?

I have both wind and solar and find my diverter making hot water quite often... would be great as I head south if I could hook my diverter up to an icemaker instead of my hot water heater...

If i can't find a 12v model I guess I'll have to upgrade my inverter, at the moment all I have is a 400w inverter for running my two laptops for work and chargine my cel phone... for some reason in my experience 12v cel chargers pretty quickly destroy the cel battery.
Ours is a Magic Chef. Bought it at Target in late 2006. We used it non-stop at our apartment during that fall and winter. Then, summer 2007 we took it to the boatyard where it got very heavy use by all. Even though we re-launched this spring, we didn't bring it aboard this boat until about a month ago. We run it when we're running generator or genset for other stuff. We used to take it onto our other boat when we were going to be anchored out for a while (a just in case thing, really, since we only used it on the boat when we had reason to start up the generator--like when hubby was using the hookah and we had to run the compressor while he was diving, etc).

Including all the time we ran it 'round the clock at the boatyard in a hot and less than ideal environment, I'd say it's pretty stout.

We have a couple 500W inverters (actually, they're the inverters in the UPS's that we have for computers...hubby just direct wired the UPS to a 12V battery bank rather than the little internal 12V battery that the UPS comes with). Even though the max loading measured is only 400 W, these inverters can't keep the icemaker running (we suspected that to be true and it is)--its that whole startup/motor thing I suppose. We haven't bothered trying our 1700W inverter with it though.

An icemaker such as this will surely place a healthy drain on the batteries so that your wind turbine will be able to continue to charge them, however, you'd be unlikely to be able to divert to it as that would provide to little juice inconsistently. The hotwater heater typically has a heating element that isn't going to be trashed by this sort of treatment, though. No matter the juice supplied it will heat up--a little or a lot. Ideal divert for solar or wind charging

Good luck to you.
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Old 07-22-2009, 07:03 PM   #6
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Yeah, I'm thinking the ice maker is the way to go... I have at least one of my laptops on at almost all times, whether for music or work and often times both of them... both are 65w... so combined that's 130 and that doesn't even begin to put a drain on my batteries when run 24/7... if the icemaker averages 150w - 400w that shouldn't be an issue at all if only running for an hour/day for ice to keep the milk and beer cold... and it will definitely be cheaper than a new fridge compressor (which would be the ideal solution) mine works but it's so old it doesn't even have a thermastat, you just have to turn it off and on to control the temp, which is a pain, and it's R12 and needs a charge and probably can't handle a 134 upgrade and and and....

thanks for the input as always.
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Old 07-22-2009, 08:09 PM   #7
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Um, if you're wanting it to keep things cold--just go ahead and fix the frig or buy a freezer. Our icemaker, as I said, makes 33 lbs/day max. A bag of ice is usually 8 lbs here. We've noted that the first 45 minutes this thing runs we only get a couple pitiful dumps of ice, then, it really ramps up. So, to get a good amount of ice, it needs to run for a few hours. A few being more than two. We just use it when we've got other stuff running on the genset and the genset is producing extra power. We figure so what if we're only getting a cup of ice here or there--its excess power of the generator or gen-set.

In your case, you'll have to use a higher powered inverter than 400W. We have several hanging around here, for example, the 750W one can't handle the startup load. That is an inductive load. If you purchase a suitable inverter, maybe...it would likely take more than 1500W to start. You'd probably calculate that you have an average of 20A load on the battery and that you'd run it for 4 hours is 80 amp hours. That's like a 3000-4000 amp hour battery to run efficiently (without dragging down the batteries too far...another topic...)...a freezer or refrigerator would most likely be a better set up for you. As you may know, we don't have a frig or freezer. If we were to add either to the boat, it would be a well insulated 120VAC freezer, btw.

However, if I were you, and you want cold for refrigeration/ice box, then I wouldn't count on doing it with your batteries and a 120V ice maker. Just go for the real thing you need--frig or freezer.

And about having to manually turn on and off the frig--that's life for lots of cruisers. Most folks don't want to leave appliances that can drain batteries on anyway.
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Old 07-28-2009, 10:54 PM   #8
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I recently added a 12 volt "lunchbox type" stove to Tadpole's equipment :


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found it on Ebay ... under $40 ... heats cans or MRE or any pre-prepared food, bakes bread & will also cook a soup or stew from raw ingredients ... as I suspect it draws a large amperage I use it whilst underway & with the engine running ...

Whilst browsing Ebay I also found these :


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also under $40

Click image for larger version

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ID:	1024

good for a hot drink whilst underway & under $10
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Old 07-30-2009, 05:39 AM   #9
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I recently saw a 12V coffee grinder and I was tempted. Maybe I will succumb next time I see it.
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Old 08-04-2009, 04:44 AM   #10
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I want a toaster. I miss toast at breakfast when cruising. Maybe one of those toaster ovens would work. Does anyone know what they draw?
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Old 08-04-2009, 05:23 AM   #11
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Coffee Grinder--there are scads of small manual grinders available! Just google "manual coffee grinder" and you'll find them.

Toaster....assuming you have some kind of stove aboard, you can always simply purchase (for $4 to $15) a foldup toaster like the one below. It does 4 slices at a time and it doesn't matter how thick the toast is The only real problem is that it gets crumbs on your stovetop. There's another type called a marine toaster that is a metal box with a V shape perforated shelf inside--it is typically more costly and takes more space to store as well.



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Old 08-04-2009, 05:08 PM   #12
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I have one of these toasters. I have always used them for camping too. But I don't like them. I find they either burn the bread or toast very unevenly. Usually we end up with half burnt, half raw toast.
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Old 08-04-2009, 05:46 PM   #13
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Ah, well, it is a matter of technique and attention to the toaster.

1. appropriate level of flame--not too high or you'll burn the toast, not too low or you'll just dry it into the appropriate level to make croûtons

2. you have to turn the toast so that both sides are evenly toasted. Else, you'll end up with half burnt half raw toast. And one must remember to rotate top to bottom as well.

Since you must turn the toast, it helps if you have a nice little set of toast tongs to turn the toast as you go along. Perhaps that's been the issue.

I find that toast made with this toaster is better, quicker for 4 slices than about anything I can use. I often used one at my house when we had guests so that I could turn out enough toast for the group without resorting to the stove oven.

Good luck in finding the appropriate appliance or using this type of toaster.
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Old 08-05-2009, 03:04 AM   #14
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I've got one of those toasters also... I'm not a big fan either... to labor intensive, takes up too much room on the stove top... if I want eggs and beans that's two pans, and what about the snausages... and it just takes to long... a lot of heat goes into heating the bottom plate which then doesn't do much... there is amore expensive variety of stove top toaster I've seen at west marine but it only does 2 slices and i'm not paying $30 for a toaster, but I have used one and they do work better than the walmart camper variety...

nowadays I have toast for breakfast about every other day. I just put it in the oven on 300 for about 2 minutes, then turn off the oven and flip the toast and it comes out perfect, doesn't clutter up the stove top and is a lot faster and probaby doesn't use any more gas since the oven is only on briefly.
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Old 08-05-2009, 06:59 PM   #15
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I've made toast off and on using those types of toasters for so many years that I don't consider it difficult but rather think you can get pretty perfect toast pretty easily from them.

oh I'm laughing now. I never even thought about the space while on the stove issue--rather, I like how tiny the toaster folds up when not in use so it can be stashed away. My own big issue with this type of toaster is the crumbs on the stove that must be cleaned up (can you tell I have cleaning issues?). Space has never been an issue as we had a 6 burner stove at home and we have a 6 burner (yes, huge) stove here on the boat.

I agree that using the oven is a good, quick way to make toast--but it is wasteful of additional fuel and if one is traveling in a hot climate, then of course it gets the cabin hotter, too.

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Old 08-05-2009, 07:10 PM   #16
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if I want eggs and beans that's two pans, and what about the snausages...
Speaking of my cleaning issues. You're saying eggs, sausages and beans would be 2 to 3 pans--no way! on my boat. It wastes fresh water and my time. I'm a one-pot cooker every chance I get. If I were doing fried eggs, (canned) beans, and sausages, I'd cook the sausages and put them on the plate, get rid of most of the sausage grease, warm up the beans in the same pan--push the beans to one side, put the sausages back in the mid area of the pan, crack the eggs on the other side (after adding a bit of Pam or sprayed olive oil if needed), put on the lid and keep at low temp for a fully cooked but sunny-side up eggs. Use a spatula to serve hubby and I from the SINGLE pot and what I'd have to clean at the end would be only the one pot, spatula, and our plates/cutlery.
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Old 08-06-2009, 12:04 AM   #17
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You really have a thing about cleaning!
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Old 08-06-2009, 06:49 AM   #18
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You really have a thing about cleaning!
Yea, it's weird. I love things to be spotless and I absolutely hate to spend time cleaning. Therefore, all my labor saving stuff ends up being related to how to keep things as clean as possible with as little effort as possible.
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Old 08-07-2009, 03:20 AM   #19
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wow... is that stove gimbaled?

Yeah I too am usually a one pot cook, which is why when I have crew on my rule is that whoever does the cooking does the cleanup as well.. when I cook it's usually one maybe two dirty dishes... some poeople cook on a boat like they are at home with a dishwasher... I hate getting stuck doing the clean up for one of those poeple... and then when I cook they get off easy...

for breky I usually use just 2 pans and the oven... i'll do eggs and sausage in the same pan at the same time but I don't have any pans big enough for 2 eggs a couple sausage and a can of beans... and thats when it's just me.. if there's more people no way can i get 4 or more eggs and sausage and a couple cans of beans in one pan... you must have huge pans as well as a huge stove to pull that off.

as for gas... I mentioned this before but I don't know how I use so little... i've been on the same 4 gallon (or whatever you call it) tank for 3 months and it still reads 100psi... it's amazing how long gas last when your fairly frugle with it... as I stated on another thread before, I once did a 7 week crossing with 1 crew onboard on just 1 little 2 gallon propane tank... it ran out a couple days after we arrived... so I'm not too concerned about my gas waste from making toast in the oven...
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Old 08-07-2009, 04:51 AM   #20
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I once did a 7 week crossing with 1 crew onboard on just 1 little 2 gallon propane tank... it ran out a couple days after we arrived... so I'm not too concerned about my gas waste from making toast in the oven...
Wow, 7 weeks? *Although I would have loved to have spent seven straight weeks at sea, we've never been anywhere that we needed 7 weeks to get to the next place we wanted to reach. *

Gas. *Leaving Pago Pago, American Samoa headed for Niuatopatapu, Tonga, all the cruisers were bustling around getting propane tanks filled and doing final provisioning, and saying goodbye to those who were staying for a year or so to work and top up their cruising kitty. *One of the cruisers, who had been working in Pago Pago for a few years and finally felt comfortable enough to leave, was furious with what he felt was the Samoan's overcharging for filling his propane tank, and so he only filled one of his two tanks, figuring he'd be fine until he got to Vava'u, Tonga. *He wasn't going to give those people one penny more than he had to!

Unfortunately, he was basing his estimate of how much gas he'd use on my estimate of how much we needed. *Since he didn't make two to four pots of coffee a day, he figured he'd use less than us. *And he and his wife probably would have, but the extra crew they picked up, a girl they had befriended in Pago Pago, was baking bread, cookies, or cakes just about every day. *Well, one day he realized that they were going to run out of cooking gas really soon, the weather was blowing like stink, and nobody wanted to head for Vava'u until things quieted down a bit. *The had to switch to survival mode, digging out a solar oven they had never used before, and mostly barbecuing on the beach using driftwood and coconut shells for fuel. *All that baking burned up his propane really quickly. *He apologized to his wife a lot for that mistake.



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