How-To:  Build your own IcyBall


The Crosley IcyBall (wikipedia) is a commercial early-twentieth century portable chemical refrigerator that runs without moving parts or electricity. Cooling is caused by the evaporation and re-adsorption of ammonia into a water-based solution, which is a spontaneous process that can be reversed by applying heat, as from a campfire. Authentic IcyBalls are valuable antiques, but Larry Hall has posted a cool write-up of the one he built for himself using gas pipe fittings.



I am descended from 5,000 generations of tool-using primates. Also, I went to college and stuff. I am a long-time contributor to MAKE magazine and My work has also appeared in ReadyMade, c't – Magazin für Computertechnik, and The Wall Street Journal.

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