Tip # 31 from the "Lone Ranger"...WAECO FRIDGE CATCH

Submitted: Tuesday, Apr 19, 2005 at 20:40
ThreadID: 121918 Views:4726 Replies:4 FollowUps:4
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Hello Friends! We have just had another two fridge catches let go in hot weather, dumping the fridge contents all over the floor.... NOT NICE ON A BAD TRACK... We have had a talk with Waeco and Engineering, and they suggest that it is a good idea to put one stainless screw in no more than 25mm from the corner on the side of the fridge. This will ensure that the adhesive does not give way in the hot weather... The new ones are now being riveted on by us before they go out....

For the rest of you, if this happens on the road or if you want to ensure that it does not happen, here is how you go about it... This is a retro-fit on all the older Waeco fridges, NOTE: NOT THE FROSTBITE FRIDGES AS THEY HAVE A GAS LINE THERE... ONLY WAECO. First, if you have to do this on the road, or if you are handy and want to do it just in case ... You have to remove all the screws on the flange around the door side of the fridge. Then you have to go in through the outside wall lower vent and pull out the two screws out of the fridge base down on the bottom that go into the floor of the fridge compartment. Then go back inside the van and slide the fridge out a couple of inches from the compartment...

On the fridge catch, you can drill a pilot hole with a small drill bit, (smaller than the screw of course), and drill into the sheet metal of the fridge housing.... Then just do not overtighten the screw so you don't strip it out..... The screw itself does not need to be large, just a # 8 Stainless Self Tapping Screw, about 5/8" long. For those of you that are not technologically or tool oriented that well, to ensure that you do not plunge the drill bit in too far through the inner fridge liner, put about six wraps of tape on the drill bit less than a half inch up from the sharp end of the bit all the way to the chuck of the drill.... This way it will go through the skin, but the tape will stop it from overpenetrating.. OK? Then with the screw, the adhesive will retain its structural value even in the warm weather...

The whole job would take about as long as writing these instructions... This is not any kind of a recall or admission from Waeco of a fault, it is just a helpful hint as a few of them have come off in the hot weather on bad tracks.... You might just keep a copy of this with you in the Owners Manual in case you have to do it... But as an alternative, instead of doing this retrofit, you could also just give the catch an occassional tug in hot weather to test it...

"Here's ta trying to look after ya..." stg at Bushtracker
"The Last Stand In Open Country"

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Reply By: Freewheelers - Tuesday, Apr 19, 2005 at 22:27

Tuesday, Apr 19, 2005 at 22:27
so not only are the catches ugly they are also partly disfunctional seems waeco should go & shop the opposition cheers
Stephen & Deborah

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Follow Up By: Bushtracker - Wednesday, Apr 20, 2005 at 22:33

Wednesday, Apr 20, 2005 at 22:33
Unfortunately, not everyone builds gear to the levels that we do here at Bushtracker.... About 99.9% of all of our Warrantee work is on that sort of "other peoples gear"...

While we constantly work with them to get them to upgrade their gear and lift their game so to speak, sometimes the wheels turn very slowly because our part of their Production is insignificantly small....

However, to credit them, we have had their Engineering department here on occassions, and they have cleaned up their act with better organization and wiring, and now Waeco have now developed a new catch, that we rivet on. It is a button and snap sort of arrangement is now on them for the last couple of months.... Improvements do happen, sometimes a bit slower than we would like...

But we continue to do the best we can...
Cheers from Bushtracker...
"The Last Stand In Open Country"

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Follow Up By: Freewheelers - Thursday, Apr 21, 2005 at 03:34

Thursday, Apr 21, 2005 at 03:34
agree with your sentiments but its the sqeaky wheel that gets the oil cheers
Stephen & Deborah

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Reply By: Rockgoc - Wednesday, Apr 20, 2005 at 03:22

Wednesday, Apr 20, 2005 at 03:22
So, Steve, what advice can you offer those of us who have the Frostbite fridges? We have no blind plugholes on the opposite side from the hinged side like everyone else seems to have.....and they all seem to have fitted a stainless catch and pin arrangement to hold the door shut on rough roads. What can we do???
Awaiting your reply with great interest! Cheers from the west........Sam Elliot et al
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Follow Up By: Bushtracker - Wednesday, Apr 20, 2005 at 22:51

Wednesday, Apr 20, 2005 at 22:51
Not sure what you have on your Frostbite... We did a variety of things, a stainless swingbolt arrangement on some.. Screwed to the woodwork of the cabinet that the fridge slides into..

Are you having problems? You might just retro-fit some Velcroe on it like I have seen done.... While you could in theory put the Waeco style catch on, you just have to miss the condensor return line around the edge of the fridge opening that warms the surface to eliminate condensation... IN THEORY, it is at about 25mm in from the edge.. You could possibly drill something in, but just stay back 50mm from the edge. The safe way to do it is drive a punch in the skin at that point and make sure you do not have copper line showing there... But I think this is still risky, maybe the answer is to add some Velcro on to the cabinet surrounds and the other part of the velcroe bonded to the fridge door...

Or get inventive with some other kind of a catch screwed into the cabinet woodwork that houses the fridge, if you are having problems...
I don't think I would drill into the Frostbite.... Better to look at someplace like Bunnings for a swing bolt, or door catch, or something that can fasten on the woodwork side, instead of drilling into the side of the fridge itself... No sense in taking any chances...

Kind Regards, and keep on rollin' Cowboy... Say Hi! to Jan... And tell here to watch the expiration dates for SSAA, mine went past due and I had to sit through a long day of Safety Course to renew.... Ended up assisting the Range Officer, as my Credentials are 30 years long, Ha! But still a pain to renew the Licence..!

Still travelin with horses, only getting better horses.... Doing Reining now... Cheers, from the "Lone Ranger"
"The Last Stand In Open Country"

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Reply By: Downunder - Friday, Apr 22, 2005 at 05:35

Friday, Apr 22, 2005 at 05:35
We went over a few tracks last year and as a precaution we used a few 500mm lengths of "gaffer" tape to make sure the doors would not spring open when travelling those rough sections. Works great, is reuseable for a time and you get quite a few lengths out of one roll for about $5.

The primary locking system is OK but given the experiences of others I will need to keep an eye on it anyway.

Cheers, Bill

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Follow Up By: Bushtracker - Friday, Apr 22, 2005 at 22:07

Friday, Apr 22, 2005 at 22:07

Oooops! We do not get the new catch from Waeco.... We have outsourced the new catch outselves.... Any way, it has proven excellent so far, will keep you Posted...

This goes to show that I am not perfect...... Ha!

Happy Trails, from the Lone Ranger (in the words of Roy Rogers)
"The Last Stand In Open Country"

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Reply By: Freewheelers - Friday, Apr 22, 2005 at 22:23

Friday, Apr 22, 2005 at 22:23
dont care if your not perfect just so long as the catchers are ha have a good long weekend cheers
Stephen & Deborah

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