Best Cooler for 26X?

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Starscream
Captain
Posts: 600
Joined: Tue Nov 03, 2009 1:08 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 26X
Location: Montreal, Quebec. 2002 26X - Etec90

Best Cooler for 26X?

Post by Starscream » Mon Dec 17, 2018 4:08 pm

We currently use a very basic Coleman 35 quart "standard" cooler placed underneath the aft dinette seat. There's room to put a couple of gallon-jugs of water into the big fiberglass bin beside the cooler at the same time. The problem with it was lack of usable space and poor ice retention, so I have been looking for a replacement.

There isn't really another good place to put the cooler: we discussed the possibilities of under the table (not enough leg room) or underneath the stairs in the aft berth between us (not enough "us" room).

I measured the bin underneath the aft dinette seat at 16" deep x 26" long x 13.5 Wide,and the space with the bin removed as 30"long x 15.5"wide and a usable depth of 16". It's deeper than that between the "ribs" of the bilge, but 16" is max for a cooler. We really wanted to get something with long ice retention like a Yeti, but besides being super-expensive they just don't fit in the bin or with the bin removed.

After much searching we found this: https://www.igloocoolers.com/collection ... oler-white and ordered it on Amazon.ca. At 15.5"H x 15.5"W x 26.38"L it might just fit with the bin removed, and if we are lucky we might be able open it in place...maybe. They make a slightly smaller 48 quart one too, which would certainly fit, but we dicided to risk the $80 and hope it works for the extra 6 quarts. Igloo claims 4 days of ice retention, and this rating site more or less confirms it for the larger sizes: https://www.thecoolerzone.com/igloo-mar ... er-review/.

I'll report back on whether it fits or not when we get it in a few days and I find the time to climb on the boat and check.

While I was Christmas shopping for myself, I added this https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B0016N ... UTF8&psc=1 to my cart to try to replace that stupid wing-nut system with the standard table. It takes too long to convert to a bed and back every night, and then find all the bits again in the morning, and I hope this will simplify things.

Starscream
Captain
Posts: 600
Joined: Tue Nov 03, 2009 1:08 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 26X
Location: Montreal, Quebec. 2002 26X - Etec90

Re: Best Cooler for 26X?

Post by Starscream » Mon Dec 24, 2018 3:14 pm

Received the Igloo Cooler today.

It fits well in the space under the aft dinette seat, and the lid can even be opened with it in place. It rests on the single "rib" in the bilge and will require some sort of structure built up in the bilge to hold it well in place. Opening the lid completely requires a slight shift in the cooler location during the process, so with the cooler held in place it has to be positioned in a way that doesn't all the lid to completely open, but still allows access.
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Maybe a better solution would be to leave it in the original fiberglass bin? It fits like it was engineered for that space, with just enough room on either side for the handles. There's about an inch on each side of free space in the long direction, and no free space at all in the short direction.
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Problem is, the lid doesn't open on its hinges when installed like this. I would have to take off the hinges and just "snug" the lid in place without the tight seal that it would otherwise have. maybe I could devise a little strap-down system using bungees or something to keep the lid tight and the cold in. I'm leaning towards this option over the first photos where the cooler is installed in the bilge.

If I like it in the bin, and come up with a decent lid-strap system, I might line the bin with plastic wrap and then foam the cooler in place. Or, maybe find a less permanent way to insulate the bin to increase ice storage. I'm not sure what the effect of removing the hinges will be on the ice retention if I don't come up with an alternate way of applying sealing pressure.

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Highlander
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Re: Best Cooler for 26X?

Post by Highlander » Tue Dec 25, 2018 3:03 pm

When I installed another battery as a single start battery I sat it on a piece of closed cell foam block cut to the shape angle of the hull so as it sits level it also keeps the battery box from chaffing on the ballast tank & hull & still allows the hull to flex
J 8)

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