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Alternatives to ice when working with samples.

lab ice bucket working with ice

Best Answer mdfenko, 16 July 2015 - 07:04 AM

maybe you can use one of these: personal cooler

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15 replies to this topic

#1 Dr. N00b

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Posted 14 July 2015 - 03:06 PM

When working with samples, it is often required to keep these on ice at all times - even when working on them.

 

I wonder though... If I instead of using a ice-bucket with actual ice in it - instead substituted the ice with lots and lots of small stainless steel ball bearings cooled down to -20 to -22 degrees C - would they be able to keep cold for long enough in comparison with the real ice?

 

Sincerely, N00b.


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#2 bob1

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Posted 14 July 2015 - 03:26 PM

That would probably work, I would probably use them in conjunction with something like ice packs to do this if you want something re-usable.  This would allow you to keep the bearings cold for longer, as the biggest problem would be conductance - steel conducts heat well, but ice doesn't so ice would keep colder for longer.

 

Note that in many instances you just want to keep the substance cold, not freeze it, which would be the risk you run when using frozen bearings.



#3 El Crazy Xabi

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Posted 14 July 2015 - 07:22 PM

Do you use a styrofoam box or ice-box? The insulation of the container is very important to keep the ice as ice for long.

 

Also, the thermal capacity of metals is low, so although the metal will cool faster, they will also reach room temp faster.

 

As said by bob1, you will probably freeze your samples.

 

As additional note, if you need to cool something fast, an easy and common method is using a slushy, mix ice and water until having some sort of watery ice, it has a higher cooling capacity.



#4 phage434

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Posted 14 July 2015 - 08:22 PM

Water-ice slush also has the virtue of near constant temperature -- definitely not the case with metal shot.



#5 mdfenko

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Posted 15 July 2015 - 05:00 AM

then again, lab armor has a bead based "ice" bucket. you can use them for heating as well as cooling.

 

or you could get something like this. it can be used to cool a block or the lab armor bead block.


Edited by mdfenko, 15 July 2015 - 05:01 AM.

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#6 hobglobin

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Posted 15 July 2015 - 09:25 AM

In labtimes I read a tip to use cooled/frozen aquarium gravel (5-8 mm grain size) as substitute (just put the Styrofoam box with the gravels in a freezer to make it ready).

Reference: Anal. Biochem., 2015, 474, 38-39


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#7 Dr. N00b

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Posted 15 July 2015 - 09:51 AM

then again, lab armor has a bead based "ice" bucket. you can use them for heating as well as cooling.

 

or you could get something like this. it can be used to cool a block or the lab armor bead block.

Did you check out the price-tag on those? tongue.png

 

I think I will try out the aquarium gravel idea from hobglobin. biggrin.png

 

EDIT: Or maybe not... seems the gravel is simply.. rocks? might as well have gone with ball bearings I think.

 

I guess I will stick to actual ice instead. Although I was hoping for something reusable. :)


Edited by Dr. N00b, 15 July 2015 - 09:54 AM.

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#8 Dr. N00b

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Posted 15 July 2015 - 09:46 PM

Oh, as for el Crazy's question: I havent bought a box yet, but I am looking at a styrofoam box made specifically for lab-work on e-bay.

what is holding me back is that the shipping cost is one third higher than the cost of the actual item. It just doesnt feel right. :(

 

but those boxes are super expensive new. I simply cannot grasp why they should be. Its styroforam... not platinum and gold...


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#9 El Crazy Xabi

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Posted 16 July 2015 - 12:18 AM

Normally you reuse the styrofoam boxes from shipping enzymes or heat-sensitive products to the lab. I really never had to buy one.



#10 Dr. N00b

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Posted 16 July 2015 - 12:44 AM

I see...

 

I just searched for styrofoam boxes in both Norway as well as on E-bay. I had no idea it was going to be so difficult to get something as simple as a styrofoam box. haha! In Norway it is impossible to find anywhere...

On e-bay I find lots of them - that does not ship internationally.

 

I guess I'll buy some enzymes from Bio-Rad and hold on the ice in the meanwhile... haha! :D


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#11 mdfenko

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Posted 16 July 2015 - 07:04 AM   Best Answer

maybe you can use one of these: personal cooler


talent does what it can
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#12 Dr. N00b

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Posted 16 July 2015 - 10:26 PM

This in fact looks pretty perfect mdfenko! Thank you very much. Great find. :)


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#13 Dr. N00b

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Posted 24 July 2015 - 02:32 PM

I found these Lab Armor Beads on e-bay by pure coincidense just now.

The price though..... unsure.png


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#14 pito

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Posted 25 July 2015 - 12:22 PM

Use cold/hot packs?

 

You know what I mean? The packs you use when you have an injury... You can use a few of them and swap them on a regular basis, just put them in the freezer , take it out, use it, cool it back...

You can use those too cool down. All you need is some way to use it in a good way, in a box, with some sort of tube holder on top of them or something like that.


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#15 Dr. N00b

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Posted 25 July 2015 - 01:48 PM

Use cold/hot packs?

 

You know what I mean? The packs you use when you have an injury... You can use a few of them and swap them on a regular basis, just put them in the freezer , take it out, use it, cool it back...

You can use those too cool down. All you need is some way to use it in a good way, in a box, with some sort of tube holder on top of them or something like that.

Cold packs = good idea. :)


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