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Bushman Original SC35-52

Bushman Original SC35-52

4.8 from 94 reviews

need advice

i have an older sc32 model. it will get to set temp eventually , but cycles in and out every minute or so when initially turned on. shouldnt it run continously until set temp reached ? thanks for any help

1 comment
Hi Tony, yes the fridge should cycle 2 degrees either side of set temp. You said it’s an older model, how old? Please call us 03 9437 0737 we’re always happy to help. Best Regards, Tom. Bushman.

Tough as!

I bought this fridge (including the cover) some 20 months ago from a stockist in Chinchilla, southern Queensland. Later, I bought the Anderson lead from Bushman directly. The fridge sits nearly permanently on the back of an open ute on a fridge slide. It's exposed to all the elements including dust and rain.
I use it to keep food for camping, lunches for work and of course drinks. Being able to keep frozen foods frozen and cold items cold in the same unit is a blessing.
To date I can't find any fault with it (although some months ago I thought it had thrown in the towel but it was only the auxiliary battery it draws power from. Once the battery was replaced the fridge works like new again!). I should say that the fridge doesn't use a lot of power and have had it running for 4 days straight from a heavy duty 4x4 battery with no charging.
Price wise, it's just as expensive as a Waeco or Engel, but having owned both brands in the past, this fridge handles more of the rough stuff!
The only item I will have to replace is the cover due to the elements (I may have to make an enclosure that's reasonably weather proof).
Well worth it for the price and the punishment it can handle.

Purchased in September 2017 at Jacksons Parts and Industrial Supplies for $1,163.50.

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Great fridge

Most of the reviews i've read here are the same. Pricey but awesome. I cant fault this fridge. I've had it for over a year now, it has performed wonderfully. Our recent trip to Fraser really made me see how rugged and reliable the construction is. The tracks were chewed out, really rough , the bushman handled it all, and still delivered a cold beer at the end of the trip. Love the different sizing options and the baskets, really well thought out. My only (1st world problem) is a light in the fridge when you open it. Thanks Bushman, great product, great fridge

Purchased in August 2018.

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Best choice, but pricey

Good design, rugged and performs well, use it in a saltwater environment so we will see how that goes.
Power consumption seems to be very frugal.

Multilevel cold zones is good

Purchased in December 2018 for $1,400.00.

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Fantastic Product

We researched a lot before settling on our Bushman fridge. We are more than happy with it and really like to idea of being able to adjust the fridge size to our camping needs. We have had it for 6 mths now and used it several times camping without a problem. We found a crack in one of the new baskets and let Bushman know and were sent a replacement straight away - great service.

Purchased in December 2018 at Bushman Fridges for $1,500.00.

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Most reliable unit ever made!!

This is my third bushman. None have failed and the oldest is 18 years. Amazing unit. These units may not have every feature but I have one in my truck, work van and caravan and they don’t miss a beat. I have used in temps upward of 42 degrees, beer is still cold. 10 out of 10.

Purchased in November 2018.

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Great product

We have used our new fridge, while camping, on a number of occasions now, both with 240 v connection and solar panel/battery 12v connection. We are very happy with it. The ability to upsize or downsize according to how long you are away is great. It runs very efficiently, and in summer over a warm but cloudy week where we had no access to power other than the solar panels we had no trouble with the fridge running the battery down. It also continued to keep the things at the bottom frozen or very cold. Buying from a local company that has great reviews about service was also something that gave me peace of mind. We couldn't be happier.

Purchased in November 2018 for $1,395.00.

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True Aussie stuff

I have used a Bushman Fridge for 10 years without one ounce of problem. Its been used in a Camper Trailer across the Kimberley in it's 52 L configuration,Freezing at the bottom and cool at the top. Never went without a cold beer or lost any food.I have used it lately in the back of my 4WD in the 45L config.Keeps the steak frozen and the wife's wine cold. I'd recommend this simple to operate reliable fridge to anyone.

Very helpfull

I spent a lot of time researching lots of different products and reading reviews about them before I purchased this fridge. Couldn’t wait to play with my new toy so unpacked it and the fridge slide put all the extension lids on and sat it on the back of the ute, all not bolted down, moved something and the fridge slide opened and the fridge fell, the top dome lid was open and caught on the side of a trailer and over extended the hinges and pulled one off the lid with some of the plastic. Damn just wasted $1395 was going through my head, picked everything up put the flat lid on started the fridge, ran like a charm and has done ever since, great relief so now probably only wasted a couple of hundred dollars, now what to do about the broken lid, rang the Bushman head office, spoke to Paul, explained what I had done, no problem he says, gets my address and tells me he will let me know how much when he gets the freight cost. Get an email the next morning with the cost, not the couple of hundred I was thinking not even close, parts turn up at my place that afternoon, and another email telling me how to correctly fit the hinges. They were great to deal with and I would recommend this company and this fridge to anyone.
I first looked at this fridge back in 2004 but went on to purchase a Waeco (CF50), and although it still works I have had issues with it from very early on failing for various reasons just when I needed it to work. I wish I had purchased this back then.

Purchased in January 2019.

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top product

purchased my bushman fridge (sc35-52 model) approx. 18 months ago and have been running in the back of my ute ever since for work and play .Love the versatility of changing the litreage so your so your not wasting power cooling down unwanted air space. Used only on the south coast of nsw. looked at other brands but keep coming back to the bushman and it was recommended buy my local camping store. At Christmas 2018/19 my power convertor packed it in, rung the service department up the lads were totally surprised this had happened. Has only been plug into power at home , never in caravan parks were power can sometimes fluctuate and said this should not have happened not being that old, asked how much for a new one they so no should not have happened and replaced it for free. Besides this been great product under constant use would highly recommend it

Date PurchasedJun 2017

Great product really like the whole concept

Great product haven’t tried it in extreme temperatures as yet but are confident it will perform well.
Everybody I spoke to pre purchase spoke really highly and some had purchased a second one as a full time freezer.
Customer service is exceptional, had a minor problem with a clip on the sleeve. Rang head office Friday before Christmas,new one arrived in the mail Christmas Eve (wow). Thanks Gary great service no questions only willing to help.

Date PurchasedNov 2018

Simply the best for reliability and service

Purchased Bushman Original SC35-52 at Wauchope Caravan and Camping show. Travelled nearly 100,000 Km many on rough roads, not missing a beat. Handled well in hot conditions NT and Arnhemland. Only replaced control panel myself after all that travelling. Great assistance from Bushman staff identifying problem and giving me advice. Highly recommended. Also a good backup fridge/freezer at home when not travelling

Date PurchasedAug 2005

Look no further

I'm so thankful that I did my research. I was going to do the norm and buy what is the "Brand Names". I was tossing up between the Engel and Waeco.

I came across The Bushman Fridge and its in a league of its own. There is nothing you can fault on this fridge.

Thankyou Bushman Fridges for a fantastic Aussie Product.


Date PurchasedNov 2018

People up in Darwin put me onto this fridge

We have only just purchased the Bushman recently but have it in the house as a second fridge at the moment. We have it running continuously with drinks and vegetables in it mainly.
We are going travelling in a few weeks and also next year and this will become our fridge in our travels.
The way the fridge is configured to provide different volumes is a really good feature.

Date PurchasedSep 2018

It took Years to find it.

I wish I had purchased this years ago. Have tried several well known brands over a couple of decades. All failed to completely fulfill my requirements for a freezer/fridge. This unit is well insulated, extremely quiet, easy on the power, and it works very well. Have only used as a freezer so far, but overnight it froze solid a butterfly leg of lamb and six chops from warm. The caravan internal temperature got up to 29 deg C and the unit didn’t falter. I am predicting when using in the tropics it will be just as good. The internal area is almost square making packing goods easier in that they fit better than in a rectangle. The basket is a bonus in the freezer for the quick grab of tonight’s meal. I am very happy with the purchase. Highly recommended.

Date PurchasedSep 2018

I’m a big fan

Like all my purchases I read a lot of reviews before parting with my hard earned cash. The reviews narrowed my choice down to three or so. What made me choose Bushman? Versatility, reliability, and efficiency. First trip was a week camping at Woody Head. The fridge was running off a battery that would no longer turn over my diesel and was being recharged by a 160W solar panel. The weather was cloudy nearly every day so not a lot of power being generated for a dodgy battery. Will the fridge shut down through lack of voltage? Didn’t have a problem. I put it down to the fact that it draws so little power. A couple of times I thought it had stopped because I couldn’t here it running. It is very quiet even when the compressor is running. The fridge has lived up to all the reviews I read. So good to see an Aussie brand matching it with the big names.
Looking forward to a Fraser Island trip where I will be using the full 52ltr capacity.

Date PurchasedSep 2018

Very confident with this purchase

I decided to purchase this 35-52 ltr Bushman fridge as previously owning two Waeco CF50 fridges which when new where ok but I needed a fridge with a lower power draw but also wanted versatility in fridge freezer temperatures control. Luckily I have a work colleague who recommended the Bushman's fridge and let me test it at home. All the current draw results I hoped for where excellent in ideal conditions on my balcony in a Brisbane winter, so off I went to Snowy's in Brendale and purchased one. I replaced the cigarette plug with an Anderson plug as my connection in the cab is 6mm cable to Anderson. I Ran it for one week at -5 with pre frozen gel packs in the base 1 bottle of sparkling wine and six 500ml tins of beer in the middle basket. The current draw was around 16 amps in an average 16 degrees which I thought was good but expected a bit lower. A week later took the fridge to Fraser Island in extraordinary warm temps and kept the fridge running off the dual battery inside the dual cab due to Dingo's everywhere! The average current draw still around 16 amps and very warm inside the cab. Unbelievable as used as freezer and fridge for 7 nights. 200 watt Korr Lighting solar panel good weather conditions the 105 amp battery was fully charged by 11am every morning. Could not be happier with my purchase, just buy the best you won't regret it! Moreton Island 12 nights here we come

Date PurchasedJul 2018

Money well spent

We have used it as a fridge with all expansion lid and collars and it's excellent. We currently use it as a freezer and it is perfect. If you use the full size things in the very top most basket don't quite freeze. We have found this with other portable fridges also. It is quiet and doesn't use much of our battery, a fantastic and reliable product. The company is excellent to deal with, and where others couldn't they would bend over backwards to get it to us (outback Australia) and did it right away. We use our fridge in 40 to 45 degrees throughout the hot parts of the year with no problems or struggles. Totally recommend.

Date PurchasedFeb 2017


works well, only negative is the 240v - 12v lead setup.works well, only negative is the 240v - 12v lead setup.works well, only negative is the 240v - 12v lead setup.works well, only negative is the 240v - 12v lead setup.works well, only negative is the 240v - 12v lead setup.

Date PurchasedMar 2017

Bounced over half the country

Our Bushman has lived in the back of our 4WD ever since we purchased it in 2013 after failed Waeco’s and an Engel.
In the time it has done two tips to the cape including the OTT.
4 trips to the Big Red Bash in Birdsville. Our most recent trip inluded over 3000km of seriously corrugated roads yet the bushman did not seem phased by it all.
Without a doubt the most reliable fridge I have ever owned.

Date PurchasedJan 2013

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Questions & Answers

Hi guys I have a brand new 130 litre caravan bushland fridge and the compressor keeps running any ideas Cheers Scott
1 answer
Hi Scott. We've answered your question on the DC130-X listing. Cheers.

My bushman fridge won’t hold set temp consistently and continues down to -18 the toggle switch is in the off position, any ideas. Thanks Ian
3 answers
Hi Ian, if it is avery old fridge, 15 years or so then the default setting was -18, all later models had a -2 default setting. Sounds a bit like a thermostat failure if so we can forward you one and you can simply fit it yourself. might be a good idea to give us a call and we can run through it with you so we can be sure of the problem and get it resolved as soon as possibleHi thanks for your reply, the fridge would only be about 4 years old. I can set the temp and it will cool to its setting and the compressor will stop but i can come back later and the temp keeps going downHi Ian, sounds like it could be a thermostat issue. We can fix this for you quickly. Please cal us on 03 9437 0737. Thanks, Tom.

I just bought a second hand bushman sc35-42 and it freezes. It won't stop running, any help would be great. Jason
1 answer
Hi Jason. First check under the control panel. There is a toggle switch which should be in the OFF position. Take the top off the compressor compartment to get to it. If you’re still stuck, call us on 03 9437 0737 when you are with your fridge a we’ll talk you through some tests. Cheers. Tom.


Bushman Original SC35-52
CategoryPortable Fridges / Freezers
Price (RRP) $1395
Release dateJan 1998

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