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Old 07-24-2009, 09:08 PM   #1
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1978 25' Tradewind
Victoria , Texas
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 11
refrigerator vent and duct

We bought a "new to us" '78 Tradewind last week and are excited to get it into camping shape! Our first question concerns the fridge. The previous owner took out the gas/electric refrigerator and simply stuck a small, dorm-size electric fridge in. We want to go back to the gas/electric. The problem is that the previous owner also removed the duct that connected to the roof vent on top of the trailer. The roof vent is still there. He put a patch over it from the inside so that the top is water proof. Of course, we will take the patch off. But what kind of duct will carry the air from the lower intake vent in the side of the trailer up to the vent itself? What are these made of? Is there a commercial duct available? Also, would an ac/dc fridge be a better option since the duct is not there? Please help!!
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Old 07-24-2009, 09:45 PM   #2
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1968 24' Tradewind
Oxford, , Mississippi
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Might try Inland for a replacement duct, I know they have them for some model trailers. They are not cheap. I believe the a original was made of ABS plastic. Some folks who are good with fiberglass lay ups have made their own replacements using fiberglass.

I am buying a new gas frig soon for my Trade Wind. PO had removed and replaced with a dorm type electric.

Good luck.
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Old 07-24-2009, 10:00 PM   #3
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You can also make one out of scrap aluminum if you have some laying around.
I wouldn't recommend switching to an AC/DC fridge, the heat rejected from the condenser still has to go somewhere and you don't want it inside the trailer.
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Old 07-27-2009, 06:49 PM   #4
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1978 25' Tradewind
Victoria , Texas
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refrig duct

thanks for the tip. Did you make this in the picture? did you have template or a drawing?
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Old 07-27-2009, 08:33 PM   #5
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No template, just did it by eyeball. The overall cross section of the duct is 23" wide and 4 1/2" deep. I boxed in part of the wall behind to refrigerator coils to get good convective flow around the condenser. Read the installation instructions carefully and if you do a good job on the design you won't need any booster fans.

Here are a couple of more pictures.
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Old 09-23-2009, 12:37 PM   #6
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Vintage Kin Owner
Pagosa Springs , Colorado
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I have a similar problem, I have a 50ish Star Trailerized home (not an airstream obviously), and it has the hole in the cabinet layout for a Dometic (I think). Relatively tall, with a curved top, and the corners are edged with metal beading. No propane hookup, but there is an electrical outlet behind it. The original fridge is missing, and somebody put a small refridgerator in the trailer, probably about 4 1/2 feet high. It will fit into the old fridge slot, with a little framing to hold it in tight, but I'm concerned about venting. There are no original vents, to my knowledge.

I'd like to put it what was originally there, but I'm a little short on money. Maybe at some point in the future I can afford it.

I do need some sort of a vent setup, right? And what way would be the best to rig this up? Vent at the bottom and one at the top going out of the trailer?
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Old 03-17-2010, 09:41 PM   #7
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1956 16' Bubble
Dallas , Oregon
Join Date: Feb 2010
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venting in side?

hello--i have a 56 bubble that has a 20 " x 15" vent in the side of the wall. do you think i can put my norcold fridge backed right up to it? i thought i might put a alluminum baffle in from the vent to "cut the vent in two in a matter of speaking. my hopes are that the fridge would pull fresh air in from the bottom--pass over the colling agent and vent out at the cooling fins to the top of the side-vent. does that make sense? do you think it will work? my trailer's gutted and it has to be the way it was done in the past as a baffle already exitst in the louver. man--i hat to build all of my cabinetry and find that this won't work. anyone offer help? regards--ted
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Old 03-17-2010, 10:18 PM   #8
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1980 31' Excella II
Drummond Island , Michigan
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Just looked at the vent for our Dometic fridge that is original to the trailer ('80 31' Excella) It is made out of plastic and has a little sticker on it that says "this Vent kit is for a Dometic Refridgerater to be used and installed without modification". The key would be to know how large of a vent you need to be adequate for the fridge. The back of our fridge is open to the vent the entire width between the wall partitions the fridge is mounted between and is about 3 inches deep. If the vent is concealed in a cabinet it could be fabricated quite easily and cheaply from the aluminum covered foam board used for home warm air ducts. They sell it a home centers. You could probably scribe a pattern on a cardboard template and then cut the foam board to fit.
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