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Bushman Original SC35-52

Bushman Original SC35-52

4.8 from 86 reviews

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

should have bought one years ago

we have had our bushman 52 litre fridge for under 12 months but love how versatile it is for free camping. we have almost finished our west Australia adventure and it didnt miss a beat over the 4 weeks we were away.

We use it in the back of the ute connected to a anderson plug and a dedicated battery. We made a special wooden frame to prevent movement in the back of the ute and to contain the battery.

Recently we have been unable to use the fridge for some months so will let you all know how it did being ignored for about 8 months in the shed next time we post.

Date PurchasedJan 2017

Bushman simply amazing.

I purchased the Bushman fridge to replace my old Waeco fridge which is still going strong. The Bushman is a bit like a Transformer with different lids and collar. I love the baskets they make access so easy, no more rummaging around simply remove the basket/s to get at what is needed. Mine came with a slightly damaged main basket a a dodgy clip. One call to Bushman head office, problem solved, parts in the mail, no questions asked. Fantastic public relations excercise. I also purchased the heavier Bushman cable with an Anderson plug, I would recommend this accessory to all Bushman owners. This fridge does not use much power (Set at minus 5) and it keeps food and drink nice and cold. I even used the bottom section as a freezer. It did need to be reset at one stage 40 degrees plus for seven days at Exmouth, the display was flashing, read the manual insert in my case a cut off fish hook into the reset hole and off it goes back to normal. Great fridge, great support, I think I will buy another for the camper trailer. Well done Bushman.

Date PurchasedMar 2018

Great unit and the best service.

have had the unit in our boat for years with no trouble at all. when used at home this week the 240v converter thing e blew, the manufacture offered a replace at reduced price (without me asking).
not only an excellent unit but unbeatable service.
the great feature is being able to change the size so when we go for the day its small capacity and large for longer periods on the water.

Date PurchasedMar 2013

Long lasting awesome fridge

I purchased my original Bushman fridge in 2003 at the 4wd show in Melbourne, it ran constantly in my Troopcarrier and shed until 2014 when the evaporator plate separated from the cooling lines.

This happened a week before a trip so I bought a new Bushman.

When I returned from the trip I had the old fridge repaired at a cost of $250.

I now use the old fridge in my shed as a beer fridge, it runs 24/7 and is still doing as good a job as the day I got it.

Bushman is the only fridge I would recommend , price service and reliability is all #1.

Date PurchasedAug 2003

Would be lost without it

We have owned this unit for more than 5 years and it was recommended to us by our camper trailer manufacturer upon purchase of the camper trailer
We love the fridge as it operates well and it’s easy enough to run via a variety of different means and maintains temperature even during 44degrees days

Date PurchasedDec 2012

Fantastic. wish i had bought one 30 years ago

Works a treat and love the different basket levels. I think my missus loves it more than me. We use it on our bush block connected to a 135A deep cycle with 120w solar without any problem. My son says its heaps quieter than his well known other brand of the same size without the added bits.

Date PurchasedNov 2017

Top quality fridge.

I bought it around 2007. It has never let me down and the after sales service is second to none. It's done over 200,000 road kilometres without a hitch. A small problem 7 years ago with the transformer was fixed. I was given the latest model tranny as well as the latest digital control panel, plus a heavy duty lead. How much? Nothing! Unbelievably good service.

Date PurchasedNov 2007

Perfect fridge for camping and touring

We bought this bushman because it is far better and more versatile and usable than other convential fridges
we went to the factory to buy it and paul was so helpful and demonstrated how best to use it they were really great
we took the fridge away for a long holiday plugged in to the back of our van and it worked perfectly cant reccommend it enough

Date PurchasedSep 2017

Great design. Brilliant customer service from Bushman.

Terrific fridge, we can highly recommend the Bushman. Equally as impressive as the fridge itself is the customer service from Bushman (DP Refrigeration based in Melbourne). I researched fridges for months, and called Bushman a few times with questions and spoke directly with Paul or Gary Kottmann who own the company and designed the fridge 20 plus years ago. Their customer service is exceptional.
There are other good brands of fridge, I'm not a Ford vs Holden kind of guy. In this review I point out a few features that I think Bushman do better. I will mention that when looking into fridges I called three fridge repairers to ask their thoughts. All three of them said Bushman was the most reliable, the most power efficient and the cheapest to repair.

The fridge itself is a straight forward design with it's MAIN focus to refrigerate your food and drinks. Other fridges have things like Wifi smart phone controls, but for me it's complicating things and is just one more thing to go wrong in the future. There is a lot we love about this fridge including...

* Very low power usage. The Bushman website states the fridge will use Average 0.67 Ah (set at -4º in 25º ambient). For Amp-Draw Nerds... I ran a test and measured the voltage drop of my battery over 24hours. We have 2 x 120Ah batteries (240 Ah total). I ran the Bushman for 24hours, set at -10 degrees, with nothing inside (making it less efficient than a fridge with food inside). Ambient temps ranged from 21 to 30 degrees. The battery started at 13.16 volts and finished at 12.88 volts after 24 hours. Using a standard AGM State of Charge Chart with 13v as 100%, the battery went from 106% to 95% in 24 hours. I might add some more figures in my review at a later time.

* We have gone camping for 10 days and the Bushman worked brilliantly. Meat stayed frozen in the bottom while food, butter, cheese was nice and cold in the top. Cans of drink are ice cold. I think for memory I set the fridge at -2 during the night and set it colder (around -5) during the day when the solar is charging the batteries. I am probably setting it colder than needed but we usually have a fair bit of battery amps to use up.

* The Bushman is very quiet. I borrowed an Engel 40L before we bought the Bushman and found it a great fridge, it made a bit more noise than the Bushman.

* A fridge / freezer makes things cold... by removing heat. One thing Gary from Bushman pointed out when I called, is they purposely designed the 240V adapter to be a separate unit outside the fridge, like a laptop charger. 240V power adapters generate a lot of heat by nature (feel how hot your laptop charger is), if this is built inside the fridge that's more heat the fridge is working hard to get rid of. Having the adapter outside the fridge makes the Bushman far more efficient. Makes so much sense. Another part of the design which makes sense is there is ample ventilation. The Bushman has ventilation on 3 sides and also the top, with a fan to extract heat also. Compare that to some other brands like Waeco where there isn't ventilation on the top and the compressor is located under the fridge, the compressor produces heat, heat is under the fridge, making the fridge work harder.

* Cost to repair. One thing I really like is the simple design of the Bushman. If the digital controller stops working under warranty, Bushman will mail you a new one and you replace it yourself by taking out a few screws! Brilliant. If your fridge is out of warranty the controller will cost you about $70 I believe (2017 prices). One fridge repairer told me to replace the digital controller on a Waeco will cost about $600.

In summary we love our Bushman and highly recommend it to anyone, because of great customer service and the design of the fridge itself.

Date PurchasedSep 2016

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Questions & Answers

My fridge is about 6 years old, switch not working, Removed cover, turned fan on, it's working. Any suggestions please to fix it?
3 answers
Hi Colleen It sounds like a control panel problem. Contact Bushman at their Melbourne address and explain the problem, and you will be able to get technical advice and they can supply a new control panel if you need one. Contact phone number I recall was 03 9437 0737, I found them extremely helpful. RonL11Hi Colleen, It could be a problem with the rocker switch. Feel free to call us at head office and we'll sort it out for you. 03 9437 0737 Thanks, Tom.Rang Bushmans, confirmed that the control panel needed replacing, ordered a new one, it arrived the next day .It is working .Excellent service.

Hi Bushmans, just wondering how long the Anderson plug you sell for the 35/52l unit is? Cheers
1 answer
Hi Brad, The HD Anderson lead is 2m long. Then the extension piece which has an Anderson on one end and a cigarette lighter plug on the other is another 30cm long. Cheers, Tom

I have an SC35-52L, the CIG connector on the power cable has given up the ghost. I would like to change to an Anderson plug connection. My question, is the power cable polarity sensitive, and if so, how can I determine which is the positive side of the twin core cable? BTW: Had the fridge since 2013, dragged it all over the roughest parts of northern Australia as well as many other places throughout QLD, NSW & Vic, never had a spot of bother with it and never run out of cold beer/wine or lost any food along the way... wouldn't consider any other brand in the future...... :))
1 answer
Hi, The wire with the writing on it is the positive :)


Bushman Original SC35-52
Price (RRP) $1395
Release dateJan 1998

Visit official website - Download manual

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