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Thread: The great esky debate

  1. #1

    The great esky debate

    OK all - Here we go again .... this time it's about eskys

    I'd love to hear your recommendations as I'm thinking about replacing my frostbite mackerel box with something larger .
    For what I paid for it (Frostbite 100L) - it's been fine for a couple of days away
    That is till
    Sitting in the boat ... with beer in hand - I got to thinking ..... It's pretty heavy but not overly large (capacity wise) & lives in front of the console so it's out of the way.
    The thing is that I know I could get something bigger in that space & maybe I should ..... unfortunately the width of the space is the limiting factor (475mm).

    OK - One box that would fit in there is the 158Lt Engel which I think is a relatively new player in this market ...... does anyone have any experience with Engel eskys ? I mean they would want to be pretty darn good for $800 . ... 58% more capacity & +8.5kgs over the Frostbite.

    Anyhow I'd love to hear any suggestions for my situation but happy to have a yarn about eskys in general ...... the good the bad & the ugly .

    Chris
    Give a man a fish & he will eat for a day !
    Teach him how to fish
    & he will sit in a boat - & drink beer all day!
    TEAM MOJIKO

  2. #2

    Re: The great esky debate

    Big fan of the EvaKool fibreglass units if you don't mind remortgaging or selling a child. You do need to look after them though or they will get damaged.

  3. #3
    Ausfish Silver Member Ducksnutz's Avatar
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    Re: The great esky debate

    Agree with Scott Chris,

    I have 3 fibreglass Evakools in different sizes all bought second hand over the years and they do the job for me.

    You can get “seconds” from the factory that are discounted and are just cosmetic imperfections not performance.
    Matilda

  4. #4

    Re: The great esky debate

    I noticed the other day when in Tackle World that Yeti have their range of Eskies, don't know if they do that size, and like others, you'd have to be prepared to part with an organ or your young. Also not sure on there performance, but if they're anything like their Tumblers they are worth the outlay.
    Cheers
    Corry

  5. #5

    Re: The great esky debate

    Quote Originally Posted by scottar View Post
    Big fan of the EvaKool fibreglass units if you don't mind remortgaging or selling a child. You do need to look after them though or they will get damaged.
    I have 2 - an old 60lt which has seen better days but still gets used
    Then I have a newer 120lt (??) "The ice box" by EvaKool which was fantastic in my old Seajay barramaster as it fitted perfectly in the cavernous deck hatch .

    I'm certainly a fan of these but they are easily damaged - my 60lt one has cracked on the inside purely from carrying blocks of ice - but hey after 20 years of use & abuse - it did its job. A big plus is the footprint is small for the capacity when compared to a rotomoulded one.

    As for price - there is little or no difference when you compare the premium rotomoulded ones (IceyTek , Engel , Yeti) against the EvaKool fibreglass esky. It will be $100 or less for one of the same size.


    As a side note - Yesterday I started a test to see how long 4 kgs of Ice packs & a 10lt frozen jerry can of water will actually last in my 110lt EvaKool.

    Chris
    Give a man a fish & he will eat for a day !
    Teach him how to fish
    & he will sit in a boat - & drink beer all day!
    TEAM MOJIKO

  6. #6

    Re: The great esky debate

    Quote Originally Posted by Corry View Post
    I noticed the other day when in Tackle World that Yeti have their range of Eskies, don't know if they do that size, and like others, you'd have to be prepared to part with an organ or your young. Also not sure on there performance, but if they're anything like their Tumblers they are worth the outlay.
    From memory - I did look & they didn't do an appropriate size ..... that maximum width 475 / 480mm is the determining factor . The other thing for me is that unless I get a minimum of 25 - preferably 50% increase in capacity .... it's not worth spending the coin . finally a long mackerel box is preferable .

    Chris
    Give a man a fish & he will eat for a day !
    Teach him how to fish
    & he will sit in a boat - & drink beer all day!
    TEAM MOJIKO

  7. #7

    Re: The great esky debate

    OK ..... Ice ratios

    The other day I was reading an esky comparison & I was shocked to see that the Dometic ones came out on top ...... total BS in my opinion as I own 3 & threw out a 4th because it started to bubble & separate from the insulation from being in the sun. ....not the point though

    What did was the claim that a EvaKool fibreglass could hold its ice for upto 15 days (so I started a test yesterday)

    Is this even possible ? ..... maybe one week if you fill it up with block ice & are in a cool environment

    How much ice would you need in a 100lt esky to last that long ?
    What is the best ice ratio ... 50% ( that's what I've heard)

    Certainly block ice is the go if you want to keep it for longer than 2 or 3 days ?

    Interested to hear everyones thoughts & experiences

    Chris
    Give a man a fish & he will eat for a day !
    Teach him how to fish
    & he will sit in a boat - & drink beer all day!
    TEAM MOJIKO

  8. #8

    Re: The great esky debate

    So the Evakool 120lt is keeping around 4.5 deg after three days .

    I've frozen a 10kg jerry can of water & have around 4kgs of frozen gel .. ..... both forms of frozen media are below 50% - so I reckon I might get another 36 hours before the temperature rises - making it around 5 days .

    Once completed I'll go with 2 x10 lts of frozen water & see how that goes - Hopefully 1 week of keeping the temps at 4 deg or lower.

    Chris
    Give a man a fish & he will eat for a day !
    Teach him how to fish
    & he will sit in a boat - & drink beer all day!
    TEAM MOJIKO

  9. #9

    Re: The great esky debate

    What about something like this for large fish?

    https://www.iceytek.com.au/150cm-fla...CABEgIznPD_BwE

    I presume you wouldn't need it every trip, depending on what you fish for, your existing esky may suffice for winter trips offshore?

  10. #10

    Re: The great esky debate

    Quote Originally Posted by Bremic View Post
    What about something like this for large fish?

    https://www.iceytek.com.au/150cm-fla...CABEgIznPD_BwE

    I presume you wouldn't need it every trip, depending on what you fish for, your existing esky may suffice for winter trips offshore?
    They have their place - but really limited to day trips .... I'm looking to week long trips & camping out

    Chris
    Give a man a fish & he will eat for a day !
    Teach him how to fish
    & he will sit in a boat - & drink beer all day!
    TEAM MOJIKO

  11. #11

    Re: The great esky debate

    I have had a number of different size evakool fibreglass boxes. Different sizes for different uses. Have done week long Fraser camping trips, and thrown ice chunks out when getting home. But I pack them solid with about 2-3kg 50–70mm thick slabs on the base, freeze any food stuff possible (meat etc, slide thinner slabs on sides where I can, and fill every void to the top with chunked up broken slab ice. Use a tub to keep food out of any water accumulation, which tends to sit around the base slabs.
    Probably 50% ice by volume. It gets heavy as well. A 2 person lift. 85L boxes.
    Then a second box the same for drinks.
    Need a big freezer to make enough ice, be careful how you use it, pre-chill and fill every void.
    From what I have seen, I feel like the fibreglass work better than the heavy plastic moulded options. But it comes down to how they are used, packed, and how long as you what is sufficient.

    Pretty much only use fridges now, but still have 6 evakools from 47L to 170L.
    They still pop up on Gumtree etc. second hand for reasonable prices, but like everything, have gotten dearer second hand.

  12. #12

    Re: The great esky debate

    Thanks Darren

    Always good to hear how others do things -

    50% is a lot of ice & it certainly doesn't leave a lot of room to keep food ..... specially if you use sealed containers .

    Normally when I do these big trips - I freeze anything upto a single 35kg block of ice to go in my big seat box or exky ...... sometimes I'll even splash out & buy a 5 or 6kg block of dry ice the day I am leaving & put it with the block ice to keep it frozen for the 24-30 hour road trip - but that's expensive , though it ensures that my big block is not thawing out.
    This trip I'm going to freeze up 3 or 4 10lt bulk spring water packs Ice.jpg This way I dont need to worry about water in the food - I can re freeze in the 40lt fridge freezer .... then finally for the last few days of the trip - it becomes our water.
    If a couple of these will keep my 120lt esky at 4 deg for 2 or 3 days swapping out a refrozen one every 24hrs - that would be great . In essence my fridge is my ice maker & to keep frozen bait .
    Keeping Drinks is much simpler - a combination of block ice & crushed ice will last days ...... & we'll no doubt end up at Hamilton Island where we can buy more l shed ice / party ice for the drinks & fish box.

    When it comes to EvaKool fiberglass eskies - (I'll be taking my 120lt) I 'm starting to think that the better rotomoulded eskies would probably match or even better the EK - Both my IceyTek 70Lt & 120lt EK- use pressure injected insulation (approx 30-35mm) - My boat seat box (125lt Techni Ice ???) it's got over 50mm sides & about 60mm in the lid ..... & it does keep ice well - specially as it sits in the sun all day. ..... I probably should test these for their ice keeping side by side.

    Chris
    Give a man a fish & he will eat for a day !
    Teach him how to fish
    & he will sit in a boat - & drink beer all day!
    TEAM MOJIKO

  13. #13
    Ausfish Silver Member Ducksnutz's Avatar
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    Re: The great esky debate

    I’d be keen to see those results if you go ahead Chris.

    Out of curiosity, has anyone parted with some serious coin and bought a Yeti cooler?

    https://au.yeti.com/collections/coolers
    Matilda

  14. #14

    Re: The great esky debate

    Quote Originally Posted by Ducksnutz View Post
    I’d be keen to see those results if you go ahead Chris.

    Out of curiosity, has anyone parted with some serious coin and bought a Yeti cooler?

    https://au.yeti.com/collections/coolers
    I know a couple of people that have splashed the cash on the mid sized ones - They are good (very well finished) but their ice retention is nothing special from what I was told .
    One of the guys mentioned that a group of them did a trip out west & the standout was apparently an Engel .

    From what I've experienced & heard from others - once you move above those blue EvaKools into the newer style Rotomoulded ones they are all much of a muchness - but a big improvement on the old school blue & orange things - Their tolerances are much better between the lid & esky - ditto with the seals themselves . I have to say , my seat box (Techi Ice ??) lid & seal combination is brilliant where the seal is installed in a recess on the lid & the lip of the esky fits & seals

    Maybe we need to ask - which ones wouldn't you buy ? - 1) Dometic ??

    Chris
    Give a man a fish & he will eat for a day !
    Teach him how to fish
    & he will sit in a boat - & drink beer all day!
    TEAM MOJIKO

  15. #15

    Re: The great esky debate

    BTW - my 14kg ice test (frozen 10lt jerry can & gel packs ) saw the 120lt EvaKool fiberglass get to 4 days at holding under 5 deg C .

    Just for some realism - I ran the test in a small greenhouse that I have which has a minimum of 20 dec C overnight & was reaching 30 deg C during the day.

    Interestingly - the 10lt Jerry can was still 60% frozen (I measured the water) - the freezer packs were thawed .
    I went an extra day but pulled the pin as the Temp was 9 deg C ...... So I reckon 2 x 10lt frozen water packs could do a week . I'm going to try that once I freeze up another 10lt pack.

    The things you do in lockdown

    Chris
    Give a man a fish & he will eat for a day !
    Teach him how to fish
    & he will sit in a boat - & drink beer all day!
    TEAM MOJIKO

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