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Old 12-30-2006, 08:51 PM   #1
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1960 24' Tradewind
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AC for 1960 tradewind

I want to install a low profile heat pump AC unit on my 1960 Tradewind. My trailer never had an AC installed. Were is the best location to mount the AC? What are the power requirments and do I need to pull a new wire to power it?
Thanks,
Terry
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Old 12-30-2006, 09:12 PM   #2
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Hi Terry ~
Always glad to hear from an early TradeWind owner. I put a low profile Penguin on mine and it was fairly easy. I did have to run a wire up to the center vent opening and re-enforce it with aluminum 'C' channel between the ribs just outside of the opening. I ran the wire from the breaker box inside the streetside cabinet over to the cabinet over the galley and then fished it between the skins, up to the opening. I left an extra 20" or so on the wire in case I ever need to put in a new unit and the wiring connection on the new AC is in a different location. If I can provide additional info, let me know.

I'd also like to hear more about this TradeWind of yours. I've started a TradeWind registry for '59 and '60 models and would like to add your info as well. I'll shoot you a PM.

Brad
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Old 12-31-2006, 04:39 AM   #3
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A/C Choices

Consider the Carrier Low Profile unit.
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Old 01-03-2007, 11:26 AM   #4
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Terry,

I would suggest you make a template and test fit the air distribution system to see how it works.

On my '59 Tradewind, I did not use the center vent because it would have put all the air returns in the front of the trailer and the rear outlet would have been blocked by the lintel above the door to the sleeping area.

I moved it back about 20", which required cutting a hole in the skin. I needed to cut the door lintel to fit around the air distribution box, but I was able to have air outlets going to both the front and the back. All the air returns are in the sleeping area, but that seemed to make sense to me.

I used extruded aluminum channel to fill in between the frame stations like Brad did. Mine is a Penguin, not the heat pump, but the dimensions are the same.
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Old 01-03-2007, 11:51 AM   #5
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On my installation, I cut out a section along the top of the lintel for the airflow. In this way, I was able to use the original center vent opening. At the moment, I don't have a picture to share but can take one and post it in case you're interested.

Brad
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Old 01-03-2007, 04:23 PM   #6
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After a second look, you're right Brad. The outlet would go through the lintel.

I guess it's a choice of which side of the accordion door you want the air returns to be.
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Old 01-03-2007, 05:56 PM   #7
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Hey Brad...

How did you lift the A/C to the top of the roof? This is a project I need to do at some point

Ken
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Old 01-03-2007, 07:08 PM   #8
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I cheated and had a shop do it because they had a lift just for this type of work. I did all the prep and connecting. They charged me $80 to put it up there and secure it. I'm still leary of getting up there considering I'm 6'4" and over 270 lbs.

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Old 01-04-2007, 10:33 AM   #9
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When I put the A/C on my '71 Safari, I put two ladders next to the trailer. My brother and I walked up the ladders carrying the A/C and placed it just above the awning rail.

Then we climbed on top of the trailer and lifted the A/C again and gently set it in the drain pan.

Wasn't too bad. You need two people however you do it!
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Old 01-22-2007, 07:14 PM   #10
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Can anyone tell me how the Penguin drains the condensation water? I am installing one of these on the 18 footer this spring (waiting for CW to put it on sale??). Is there a way to run the water through a tube that I can snake down onto the ground. I'm not crazy about the thought of getting showered when I'm outside the trailer.

Also, how does the A/C unit look on a vintage trailer? I'm afraid of it being an eyesore. Can anyone post a picture of outside/inside?

There is presently only one vent hole in the trailer, slightly rear of center. The A/C will have to use that hole. Am I facing any unknown dangers of cutting a new vent hole closer to the dinette? I think the (only) 12V light will have to move, but that's no big deal.

Speaking of power, where can I get a 20A breaker for the electrical panel? I read on the forum a while back that sometimes the box stores have trailer breakers, but this is for a '59! I'm sure Homer down at HD will have no idea what I'm talking about (I'm used to this).


Thanks for any help,

Ryan.
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Old 01-22-2007, 07:25 PM   #11
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Hi Ryan ~

Couple of thoughts regarding your questions.

- get the drain pan for the Penguin and run a flexible hose between the skins to an upright vent tube. Shouldn't have to run it too far and keep it at a downward slope
- depending on brand of breaker panel, you may find replacements or new breakers available. Mine has a Bulldog brand and my dad had a 30 amp lying around in his garage. They are still available through electrical supply houses

I'll get a pic posted here shortly. Got to find an appropriate one. Stay tuned...

Brad
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Old 01-22-2007, 07:42 PM   #12
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AC Unit on Vintage

Here's a couple of pictures. Living in central AZ, an AC is a must. With that in mind, I don't think the AC unit is too obtrusive. You'll need to make your own decision though.

Brad
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Old 01-22-2007, 07:47 PM   #13
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Penguin on a Tradewind

Ryan,

Here is a picture of what the penguin looks like perched on top of a 24' 1959 Tradewind.

The condenser appears to drain from three locations. If you look at the picture of the drain pan below, you can see there is a crossover channel that collects condensate from the three locations and directs it to a central location where there is a drain fitting. The drain goes between the skins and out the bottom of the trailer or a wheel well.

Alternatively, you can let it drain down the outside.

An advantage of the drain pan is that it also provides a transition from the flat bottom of the AC to the curved top of the airstream. I don't know how it would look without the drain pan, but the plastic trim does give the installation a slightly more 'finished' look.

I have also uploaded a picture of the inside, without the air distribution box installed.
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Old 01-22-2007, 07:48 PM   #14
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I'll agree, that is pretty low profile. That's a nice looking coach, Brad. Love the front window awning.
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