[Market-farming] Cooler

gutierrez-lagatta gutierrez-lagatta at charter.net
Mon Jan 27 22:07:48 EST 2003


Paul,
I have a reefer truck box for a cooler.  In this area (Birmingham,) I can
tell you where youc an get 30-40 used ones.  The trucks cost around $12k,
complete, the box alone without refrigerationeqpt - $500-600, with eqpt-
$750-1,000.  Call your local dairy to see what they do with their old
trucks.  I bet there is a junk yard somewhere which resells them.  The
beauty of reefers is that they have 4-6" of insulation on the walls and roof
and are intended to be outside in the elements.  If you buy a walk-in cooler
you will have to either build a roof over it or pay extra for a special roof
coating.  The things to watch out for with the used reefers are:
a) does the refrigeration equipment work , can you test it
b.) is there any guarantee
c.) what type of refrigerant does it use - if it is the old type of
refrigerant it will cost a BUNDLE to replace it should the system need to be
recharged at any point in time
d.)what power does it require - some require 3-phase power which is not
available or expensive to put in , stay away from those
e.) If you buy just the box be sure to look for one without wheel wells
which protrude into the box.  These require a special platforn top rest on,
plus steps and are awkward to work around inside the cooler.
> I am renting a new piece of land that doesn't have a barn (yet...) and I'm
thinking through some ideas for a temporary cooler, and would really
appreciate any feedback.  Some possibilities are
> -used cooler put outside (maybe with shed roof over it, or a sealed roof
on the cooler).
> -no cooler, just harvest and sell (I like this the least)
> -old reefer truck, park it and plug it in
There are ways to convert an air conditioner into a cooler, allowing you to
get lower than the usual 64 degrees that you can get with an a/c unit.  If
you're handy or know a good electrician , maybe you can do this.  I talked
to two guys - one electrician and one refrigeration guy and neither would
touch it.  Plan on paying a refrigeration guy $55/hour or more for any work
that they do, IF you can find one who is interested. Good luck.

Adriana





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