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Old 05-18-2010, 08:37 PM   #1
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1964 22' Safari
Ruston , Louisiana
Join Date: May 2010
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Bay Breeze A/C Replacement

Folks,
I have decided as part of my 64 Safari restoration to have the original Bay Breeze A/C replaced. I have a Coleman coming to a local RV service place. The A/C actually worked when I bought the trailer last year but now the compressor runs a few seconds a then kicks off. Wish I could get it fixed and depend on it but just don't trust it for the summers in Louisiana. So back to putting in a new one. My question is does this Bay Breeze mount in a standard 14 x 14 openning such that the Coleman will drop in without too much trouble?? I can't see an openning from the inside....it looks like the interior fan shaft just sicks right through a hole in the roof. Anyone with some help is much appreciated. I am really worried about taking this thing to the shop for the A/C change out without knowing a little more myself. Thanks so much in advance! Jim
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Old 05-18-2010, 10:04 PM   #2
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1959 26' Overlander
Nowhere , Washington
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Unfortunately the Bay Breeze is installed very differently than a modern unit. Instead of a 14 x 14 opening, it is installed with just two small holes through the skin. One is for the motor shaft and the other is for the refridgerant lines.

There is a lower unit and an upper unit. The lower unit is attached to the interior skins with a couple dozen pop rivets. It contains coils, an interior fan blade and the control unit/switch and electronics. The upper unit is attached to the exterior skin with about a dozen screws (each of which leave a hole that will need to be plugged with a rivet) and contains the compressor, the fan motor and coils including the refidgerant fill valves (I'm not an AC guy so I don't know the technical terms for all this).

If you are going to install a modern unit in its place, you will need to cut a 14 x 14 opening and add some material to support the weight. The Armstrong units were designed to distribute weight accross the skin of the trailer and were contoured to fit the curve. Modern units require support between the interior and exterior skins or it will collapse the roof of your trailer.

Here are a couple pictures of the interior removal. I forgot to take photos of the exterior. That thing weighs a ton, so be careful if you take it down. Since we made the decision to scrap mine, me and a buddy just heaved it over the side. You will need to get an HVAC guy to recover the Freon (if you don't want to violate Federal laws) then you can unscrew (or cut) the lines to take the two units apart.
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Old 05-18-2010, 10:14 PM   #3
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1964 22' Safari
Ruston , Louisiana
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Thanks so much for the info. I am wondering if I could simply take the old Bay Breeze out, fix the holes inside and out and mount the new Coleman in one of the existing 14 x 14 vent opennings that are already in the roof. Again, I thank you very much for the help.
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Old 05-18-2010, 10:18 PM   #4
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Yes. You should definetely be able to do that. I think most people put their modern AC's in the front 14 x 14 vent opening in the older trailers.
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Old 05-18-2010, 10:31 PM   #5
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1964 22' Safari
Ruston , Louisiana
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Thanks, I feel better already. Are the holes in the ceiling where the old AC is going to be removed from very large or do you think they can be covered in some manner that doesn't look too horrible? Again, thanks so much. If I were doing this myself I wouldn't be near as worried about my 64 baby but to turn it over to some RV shop that is not familiar with these old ASs makes me nervous. If I had a good way to get access to the roof I would do it myself but getting a little old to do that off of a ladder. Again, I certainly appreciate you taking the time to help me. Regards, Jim
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Old 05-18-2010, 10:45 PM   #6
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The holes are not very large at all. I covered mine with a couple small patches. The tough part is that since you don't have the interior of yours taken apart, you can't use buck rivets for the exterior patches (the interior patches are less of a concern because they don't need to be weather proof and can just be pop riveted). They will need to use Olympic rivets. Make sure they have some experience with Airstream repairs or look for another shop.
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