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Ice Chest

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Project by Wesley048 posted 01-15-2014 02:42 PM 1718 views 5 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This should be interesting. Clear cedar, closed cel insulation with polystyrene panel. I looked all over the internet for what people were using for the inside cooler material. Some used expensive copper or galvanized sheet metal. I wanted the durability without much cost. I found a sheet of 1/8th inch sheet of polystyrene used for shower enclosures and decided to give it a try. The ice chest is not finished yet. More pics to follow.

Laid in and glued the sides and bottom. Used three hour silicone in all seams. Next, install the sink drain and silicone that in.

Finished inside with flashing then lettering and Thompson stain.





8 comments so far

View naugled's profile

naugled

21 posts in 2319 days


#1 posted 01-15-2014 10:05 PM

Thanks for posting, I have a similar project in the works and was going to use the same material. What glue did you use for the polystyrene? And how did you finish the inside corners? Is that caulk?

Looks very nice so far.

View Wesley048's profile

Wesley048

40 posts in 1061 days


#2 posted 01-16-2014 05:54 AM

For the foam I am using window and siding calk. To attach the polystyrene to the foam I am also using window and siding calk. For inside the cooler I will use 3 hour silicone. Reason being I believe it will last much longer in extreme temperatures and under water. The bottom of the ice chest will be double foam so that I can give it a sloping center.

View Scooter McClain's profile

Scooter McClain

173 posts in 1389 days


#3 posted 01-17-2014 04:47 AM

I look forward to your progress with this. I have been wanting to build a cooler like this, and make it like the other one you have posted for the deck (one of your other projects posted). I don’t want to use an igloo cooler, and I think the idea that you have here is a more attractive option for a lot of reasons. I would think that this in itself would perform well enough for keeping beverages cold and keeping the ice box cold as well, and this would be a better drainage system since the low point could be at the very bottom of the ice chest.
You might be able to just take this, with the foam panels, and then impregnate fiberglass cloth with epoxy and then use a gel-coat type paint on top of that and call it done?
I look forward to updates!

-- I make sawdust. I think thats a fair assessment of my finished products!

View naugled's profile

naugled

21 posts in 2319 days


#4 posted 01-17-2014 02:08 PM

Wesley048, I like the drainage idea. How do you plan to create the slope in the polystyrene? Heat form it? Or cut panels and caulk the seams?

Scott Shea, the fiberglass idea was my first choice when I was putting together my cooler but after looking into the cost it changed my mind. It still seems like the best approach to me but it is pricey.

View Wesley048's profile

Wesley048

40 posts in 1061 days


#5 posted 01-17-2014 04:33 PM

Scott Shea, Naugled, think you for the comments. I was thinking about fiberglass but working with it in the past I didn’t like the mess or the cost. I wanted simple and cheap. For the slope in the foam I sanded with electric palm sander, about 80 grit until I got the slop I wanted. The first polystyrene panel I cut for the bottom was heated with a heat gun to help it form with the foam but when it cooled down the panel warped and that was over. I cut a new piece and with out heat it worked fine. It has a little ripple but you won’t notice. I then used silicone and presto.

I’m filling with ice today for a test.

View Wesley048's profile

Wesley048

40 posts in 1061 days


#6 posted 01-19-2014 03:56 PM

I put in 24 lbs of ice Friday midday. Checked it last night and had plenty ice left. My thinking is this home made ice chest is significantly better than my Igloo. Today the temp will be in the 70’s plus I will be using it as it was designed to be used.

View Wesley048's profile

Wesley048

40 posts in 1061 days


#7 posted 01-22-2014 02:40 PM

Six days and there is a little ice left. I have a few leaks to fix but the ice chest is a success. Now to finish with wheels and a water sealer.

View Wesley048's profile

Wesley048

40 posts in 1061 days


#8 posted 01-25-2014 01:31 AM

Well, I should have done my home work. The ice chest worked great at keeping things very cold but the silicone didn’t stick. In fact there is only one known product on earth that will stick to polyethylene and that is made by 3M and cost way more then I want to spend. Going to look into acrylic or thicker polyethylene to plastic weld.

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