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Definitiely one of the biggest puzzles on our boat to date has been effectively organizing our refrigerator. Coming from the land-based world of front-loading fridges, the top-loader in our boat has caused us much strife. We know that in order to conserve energy we aren’t supposed to leave it open too long. How to get what we want out of there quickly and efficiently is the challenge.

Today the weather was crappy (think torrential downpour) which was perfect actually as we had made plans to tackle the above-mentioned puzzle instead of going out sailing. We began this morning by emptying all of the food into coolers (do we really need that many different types of salad dressing?), removing the current shelves and measuring the available space. Then, following a brief brainstorming session, we departed for Walmart and Home Depot with a plan and a shopping list.

With the parts picked up from our excursion we began sawing, drilling and fastening. Ultimately we feel we have created the best PDQ top-loading fridge system out there! Rebecca assures me that she has done a ton of research to back this up. Who am I to argue?

The photos don’t do it justice. It truly is a work of art. 🙂


  1. But does that box of white wine fit into the newly configured fridge?

  2. Mike, I love this idea…. Where did you get the handles, home depot ? Do you remember what department ??


    S/V Whistler
    PDQ 32 Hull 41

    • Hi Mark.

      Yes, Home Depot. They were in the aisle with all of the fasteners, screws, nails, etc. We then picked out baskets at Walmart which fit the shelves exactly. It is still a bit of a pain compared to a home-sized front loader, but it is a LOT better than what it was.


    • I should also add that the shelf underneath the one shown also has handles for easy removal. Those handles are just shorter than the ones on the top shelf because of the limited height that is available. The baskets are all attached to the handles and bases by plastic tie wraps.

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