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My home made deer cooler

29932 Views 66 Replies 46 Participants Last post by  Kevin2
I started with two 4x8 sheet of urethane insulation. I cut it to make a structure 8' tall, 2' wide adn 3' deep, with floor and a ceiling that I could flip open the front half. I cut out the bottom of the door for a small window air conditioner. Everything is duct taped together so I can disassemble if storage.

The air conditioner would normally not get cold enough, so I took out the thermostat and reset it. The thermostat is normally simply a bimetalic material that makes contact with a connection when the temperature goes up. The dial screws in and out the contact to adjust the temperature that it comes on at. There is a calibration screw on it that I screwed in until it would go down to 40 degrees at the coldest setting. I don't have it in the picture, but I have a cheap indoor/outdoor thermometer taped to the door with the wire probe going in and hanging in the chest cavity.
As described in my other thread,
http://www.archerytalk.com/vb/showthread.php?p=7683248#post7683248
this is the biggest deer I've ever gotten. I had to clip his legs a bit to get him to fit!

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How cool does it actually get with the window unit AC
 

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cost

how much for the material, not including the AC unit?
Are those sheets cheap?

I did a search and saw where another guy said to line the inside with shower stall material so you can hose it down.

But this looks nice and easy!
 

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Clever, nice buck coffin.

Just curious, if you just duct taped it, how is the weight of the buck being supported? Did you reinforce the top area around the rod?

Never mind, I can now see the hoist through the top, at first I thought it was hanging from a rod in the top?
 

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Anything invloving a DIY project and a window unit AC is foxworthy material. I like the idea though, guess thats why I like foxworthy
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Ok great job, now some questions.

1. How long did you keep the deer in there?

2. How cold did it get in there with the deer?

3. Did you loose any meat to spoilage?

4. Why do you put the AC on the ground....doesn't heat rise and cold air sink to the ground?
1. I usually keep it in there about 5 days before I start cutting it up.
2. The AC unit clicks off at 39 degrees, and starts up at 43 degrees.
3. Nope! Not in this unit. Before I put this together, what I had was a very large tarp that I put a layer of bubble wrap in, then folded over then folded again to make a large insulated bag. I put this around the hanging deer and then used a shop vac hose, again wrapped in bubble wrap for insulation, to pipe cold air in off of an old salvage pie cooler.
Here is a picture of it below.
4. It would be better to have it at the top, but the structure isn't stiff enough to hold the weight of the AC unit. Even at low fan, in the small space, it circulates the air real well. The only down side to is is that the meat dries out quicker. You definitely want to remove the tenderloins before you put it in the cooler.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
how much for the material, not including the AC unit?
Are those sheets cheap?

I did a search and saw where another guy said to line the inside with shower stall material so you can hose it down.

But this looks nice and easy!
I bought the AC unit for around $25. If you check the internet freecycle groups, or cheapcycle (both yahoo groups), you can get them cheap. I bought this one off of ebay. It was around a 30 mile drive to pick it up, but the price was right.

I forgot what the sheets cost, but they aren't bad at all. I'd guess $12 a sheet? Sorry, but it's been a while. The sheets are silvered on one side, and there is no problem hosing it down. I put several layers of news paper on the bottom.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
How cool does it actually get with the window unit AC
Normally, it probably wouldn't get below 50 degrees at it's lowest setting. By resetting the calibration screw on the temperature knob, I have it set to keep it 40 degrees inside at it's lowest setting.:smow:
 

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Normally, it probably wouldn't get below 50 degrees at it's lowest setting. By resetting the calibration screw on the temperature knob, I have it set to keep it 40 degrees inside at it's lowest setting.:smow:

Ok, can you give a pictorial description or a step by step process?

Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Ok, can you give a pictorial description or a step by step process?

Thanks
Unfortunately, I'd have to take the AC thermostat out to give you a pictorial. It was pretty obvious what to adjust, (but then again, I'm gweeb an engineer). I would say that normally, the calibration screw will have a dab of paint/glue on the threads that lock it in place. It really is pretty obvious what to adjust just by looking at the mechanism.
Eric
 
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