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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well its winter and I am looking for projects.. I just finished a new beaver board for my Pacific river bag on my cat and am ready for something new.. I came across a site on how to build polar bear tubes.. pretty much a 2" pvc tube that is capped and froze for your cooler.. I think with the thicker pvc these would hold ice longer than a regular milk jug, and you could cut them to length to fit your cooler.. that is if you have a chest freezer long enough... has anyone tried these?. im always looking for a way to save a buck and increase efficiency of my cooler.. Cooler Tips


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Paddling in to the Future
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that looks like a pretty good idea. I wonder how well it works? Cheap enough to give it a shot though, that's for sure.
 

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uh, wouldn't it be easier just to take some old bottled water bottles and not fill them completely? that would reuse the bottles, give you ice to cool the cooler, and also you'd have chilled water when they thawed.
 

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I made some for my mini cooler. I've always used water jugs but the pvc tubes you can cut to fit your cooler or your freezer perfectly. They are good for day trips and weekend trips. If you had a deep freeze and could do ~40" long and use 3" pvc they would maybe last long enough for a week long trip. It was a fun project and everyone thinks they are cool and such a good idea but the water jugs work just as well. The wife used to complain about all the frozen water jugs in the freezer but doesn't really mind the clean cut pvc pipes that fit perfectly in the freezer.
 

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I have used this method before a few years back...although I have never directly compared the two, I'm positive that my frozen jugs are much more efficient.

I wil only use square jugs so they fit great in any cooler and don't waste space with rounded corners/edges....typically these are 2qt cranberry juice jugs. Much bigger and they thaw too slow, smaller and they thaw too fast. "Milk" jugs are too irregular and they crack/break easy, especially after several uses, plus they are hard to completely clean to hold potable water.

Plus it gives me easy access chilled water once they thaw.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
thanks for the info guys... I got what I needed.. I thought they might be a little more effecient with the thicker plastic, but that doesnt seem to be the case...
 

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The thicker plastic is less efficient for cooling purposes since you end up with less ice. The definition of a calorie is the amount of energy needed to heat 1g of water 1 degree Celsius. It takes ~80 calories to convert 1g of ice to water, so the conversion process takes much more energy than it takes to simply heat it up. I'm guessing it actually takes less energy to heat up plastic than water, so it would be an even worse ratio.
 

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Jaffy is correct, the specific heat of PVC is ~.25 Calories per gram per degree Centigrade, so you get at best 25% the cooling from cold plastic. Loosing the melting point bonus energy hurts even more, so any water ice displaced by extra plastic costs you in cooling efficiency.
 
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