Building an ice box - need thoughts


Old 04-21-13, 11:53 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: USA
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Building an ice box - need thoughts

Hey guy here....great to find a site like this!

First off, I apologize profusely if I have posted this in the wrong forum. I've looked and I guess it could go in a few different ones but decided on this one. If a forum admin needs to move this I totally understand.

I'm working on getting an ice cream trike up and running by summer and have decided to build the ice box myself. I don't think it will be too tough but I want to get my ducks in a row so as not to waste too much $ or time.

The ice box will be basic and hold dry ice to keep the ice cream novelties cold. My dimensions aren't set in stone yet (still working on buying the trike) but they will be approx 24"x 30" x 24". My most pressing question is about the materials used in this construction. My idea of a ice box is based on some old fashioned ideas I have...perhaps new materials are now used?

My idea is starting with a plywood outer box/shell, inside of that at least 2" foam insulation, and then inside of that a sheet metal box.

Does this sound accurate or is something else now used instead of the metal inner wall?

I appreciate everyones thoughts!
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Old 04-21-13, 04:31 PM
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I'm thinking a plywood & steel box might be heavy and are you able to create a metal box that holds water? I'm sure a plywood, foam and steel box could work and be durable but I wouldn't want to peddle it up a hill. Have you considered just using a existing cooler? Commercial size and construction ice boxes are available.
Old 04-22-13, 04:44 AM
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I was thinking the same as Dane - plywood would add too much weight

I'd want sheet metal on the outside too. I'd also check out the price of buying a commercially built box and weigh that against the time and cost of building one yourself.

btw - welcome to the forums!
Old 04-22-13, 04:53 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: USA
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Thanks guys! (or gals...whichever is appropriate....ha ha) After more sleuthing on this project I'm excted to say that I won't have to worry about the metal lining! I'm kind of borrowing some ideas on building this from a ice cream trike manufacturer and I just found out that they do not cover up the foam once it's been adhered to the wood inside. Apparantly it's closed cell foam (?) so it won't absorb moisture, etc...that's what they said at least.

This will not be for water....basically it will hold some dry ice and some ice cream novelties. I recently built a hot dog cart and I think I'll use a similar technique with this ice cream box as I did the cart. And that's to frame it out with 2x2 then skin it with luan plywood. I can glue the foam to the inside of the luan and it will be nice and light. I'm not carrying around cinderblocks in the thing so I think it should work just fine.....
Old 04-22-13, 07:15 PM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
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Can you post a picture of the hot dog cart so we can get an idea of what your are planning?
Old 04-22-13, 07:38 PM
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Why not build a foam box and cover the outside with fiberglass?

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