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Old 01-08-2007, 06:53 PM   #1
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I need your opinion

We own a 22' CCD with the aluminum interior walls. It is noisy with the air conditioner on high. We are thinking we should have gotten a Safari with the white fabric lining in the interior. Does that make your trailer more soundproof? Does it help in insulating in the summer? It gets hot here in Texas in the summer, especially with the panoramic windows.
Thanks.
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Old 01-08-2007, 07:07 PM   #2
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I believe that the consensus opinion is that the Safari with fabric is warmer in cold weather and cooler in warm weather. Also, the Safari model we have with fabric walls does not have the pano windows, which most likely also contributes to the insulating properties of the walls. Lastly, the aluminum walls in the Safari line are only available in the SE (Special Edition) model, read "more expensive."

Air conditioners are noisy regardless. If our fabric walls deaden the sound much, then with aluminum walls, we'd be driven outside when it was on. Frankly, we try to avoid using the A/C unless absolutely necessary.
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Old 01-08-2007, 07:18 PM   #3
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Ditto

We have the 19' Safari Bambi with the white wall covering and A/C. The A/C has the optional heater feature. We sometimes use it to knock a chill off. But, generally, here in NORCAL we can get by with just opening the vents and windows...especially in the evening. We stayed in Dunsmuir and did use the AC then (110 degrees).

Our heater and the AC are both noisy. We turn the heater on about an hour before we turn in and then turn it on a low setting so that it only kicks on a couple of times during the night.

We thought of using one of the little ceramic or fan heaters. But I just had a friend whose motorhome burned up due to a fire with one. So, I think we can put up with the noise.
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Old 01-08-2007, 08:21 PM   #4
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I'm curious, where is the noise primarily coming from? Is it the unit on the roof reverberating through the roof, or is it the A/C fans inside the cabin? Either way the noise may be subdued by absorption. Adding or increasing things soft like carpeting, drapes, throw pillows, blankets, towels could help some. I don't have A/C but when I'm awakened at rallys by the Troubadours at 2am I put in ear plugs

Do we have an audio engineer member who could approach the question of active noise cancellation in an Airstream cabin?

Best wishes,

Steve
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Old 01-08-2007, 08:22 PM   #5
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Not sure if it quiets down the interior. Try some throw runners on the floor...maybe that will help.
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Old 01-08-2007, 08:24 PM   #6
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Old 01-08-2007, 08:26 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doorgunner
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Old 01-08-2007, 08:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stu's mom
We own a 22' CCD with the aluminum interior walls. It is noisy with the air conditioner on high. We are thinking we should have gotten a Safari with the white fabric lining in the interior. Does that make your trailer more soundproof? Does it help in insulating in the summer? It gets hot here in Texas in the summer, especially with the panoramic windows.
Thanks.
We have the same trailer but ours is an '03 model. We used the AC for the first time in Florida this weekend. I ride ships for a living so mechanical noise at night is a good thing and as such can ignore the sound of the AC. I did notice that it was louder than I would have liked but upon entering other AS at the rally, they had the same level - I could not tell the difference. We opted to use the fantastic fans to pull air through but used the AC one night because of the rain.
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Old 01-08-2007, 08:32 PM   #9
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Given that you're only talking about at most, 1/4" of foam and vinyl covering the ceiling, you aren't going to be realizing much from a soundproofing standpoint. However, we were in Fort Davis last July with one section of vinyl/foam missing from the ceiling. That section of the ceiling was significantly warmer to the touch than the other covered areas. So the covering does reduce the amount of heat radiated into the trailer somewhat.
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Old 01-08-2007, 08:33 PM   #10
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Our cloth material walls seem to do a great job...plus they don't scratch that easy.
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Old 01-08-2007, 09:22 PM   #11
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Unless Airstream changed their insulation technique without telling me, then the fiberglass material leans against the back of the bare aluminum in the CCD, or the SE Safari models. This should provide a significant amount of vibration dampening.
Easy to check, just rap on the ceiling and listen to the sound. If it is tinny and metallic, then the insulation probably does not touch the inner skin and yes, this would cause significant noise with vibrating appliances, such as A/C or even exhaust fans.
If the noise is short, deep and thumpy, then it's insulated well, and the noise most likely emits from the A/C unit itself, not it's surrounding sympathetic metals.
Next step would be to remove the inner A/C shround and follow the noise. Might be best left to a pro, but a brave and handy owner should be able to find the source of the irritation.
Usually, mechanical rattles are caused by sympathetic vibrations, which in turn are caused by loose or poorly fastened interior components.
Of course, some noise is to be expected from a rooftop a/c. The 22CCD with it's open floorplan is somewhat unforgiving to these scenarios, making a meticulous assembly even more important.
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Old 01-08-2007, 10:02 PM   #12
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I tend to agree with comment

Quote:
Originally Posted by myoung
I believe that the consensus opinion is that the Safari with fabric is warmer in cold weather and cooler in warm weather. Also, the Safari model we have with fabric walls does not have the pano windows, which most likely also contributes to the insulating properties of the walls..
Having an Safari SE model, I tend to agree with Mike that the Non-SE fabric interior covering is warmer in the winter than our bare aluminum interior, and to a lessor degree, the fabric interior covering makes the Safari a bit cooler in the summer. I also believe the larger CCD type windows and the Pano windows in the SE Safaris (ours have Panos front and rear) contribute more to this situation than the interior covering differences. This is especially true since the windows are single pane, thus the larger window area in the SE model, the less insulation from the outdoor climate. Having said all of this, I don't think the true differences are more than about 5 degrees either way. My guess that sooner or later some of us will get together and add some real scientific data to this question.

John
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Old 01-10-2007, 08:36 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfixx
I'm curious, where is the noise primarily coming from? Is it the unit on the roof reverberating through the roof, or is it the A/C fans inside the cabin?
We have a 34' and can close the bedroom door (slide it as the case may be) and that ac is still too loud to sleep with, my wife and I use earplugs. When you are sleeping with a roof unit howling away, whether your walls are aluminum or a thin fabric layer its gonna be loud compared to a house with isolated central air and no high induction fan installed inside.

I think sfixx has the right idea, are we talking normal AC noise here or is there some kind of mechanical extras like squeeking or knocking or banging that would indicate a failure is close at hand?
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