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Old 03-28-2012, 09:02 AM   #29
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Old 03-28-2012, 10:06 AM   #30
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How does one run the furnace fan to circulate air?
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Old 03-29-2012, 07:29 AM   #31
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Veggie

One of the problems with the mini split 18k btu system I discussed above was the 240v compressor. I don't know if there is a comparable 120v compressor. Also the inside evaporator is too large and takes up too much valuable space in the Airstream. A new evaporator would need to be designed that fit into the floor. I am not sure if enough Airstreams are made each year to justify the expense of designing and manufacturing such a specialized evaporator.

Crispyboy

If I set my furnace thermostat to call for heat and then not light the pilot light, the furnace fan will run. Your thermostat may have a fan only setting like in most homes with forced air heating and air conditioning systems.

Dan
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Old 03-30-2012, 09:23 AM   #32
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hmmmm
after all it seems like the Amstrong wouldn't be able to handle the ducted system.
But it also seems to be doable with either a split system or the one designed for truckers.
We were always amazed about how well the units for the Sleeper's in the trucks works and that may be a way to go but not sure if that would cover the whole Trailer.
Does anyone knows where SmokelessJoe is?
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Old 03-31-2012, 09:24 AM   #33
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Before I bought an AS, I was obsessed with building a Teardrop Trailer and did tons and tons of research and planning. Many of those guys ducted their ACs under their trailers. Can you just reverse that logic? If you've got a top mounted unit, just run the ducts on top. Of course, you'd probably need to insulate the ducts and to keep your AS looking great you'd probably want to build a sexy aluminum box/tube to hold the ducting, but that might be an easier challenge than either running through the ribs.

Lynn
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Old 03-31-2012, 10:53 AM   #34
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I like the SmokelessJoe split system but some of the split systems used on Semi trucks would seem to be a logical step. Last time I looked you can even buy the kit with pre-charged lines for a very easy installation. The only manufacturer option for an interior installed AC ducted unit I could find was a european model running 240V but it doesn't seem a great leap to figure out a 120V version.
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Old 03-31-2012, 12:25 PM   #35
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Veggie,

Iím still here and my LG split unit is working perfectly too.

Over the years there have been many threads discussing the unsuitability of typical North American RV cooling and heating systems. People object to the big, bulky profile ruining the classic Airstream lines and the noise, among other things.

You may have seen this thread. Details about my solution in post #41:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f427...tem-60486.html

Dometic, the maker of one of the sleeper cab models is also the major supplier of rooftops to the American RV market. There are probably much better ways to do things but the incentive is missing. Why pioneer new methods when you have the market sewed up?

Detroit thought like this too before the Japanese and Koreans came along. And in technology the RIM Blackberries of the world regularly get taken out by the iPhones.

No such fear in the sleepy RV world, were much has not changed in 50 years or longer.

Just out of interest, this Australian company has a big piece of that market and offers both rooftops and their own version of a split unit, which may interest you.

RV, caravan, marine air conditioning and refrigeration products

In my opinion the truck cab solutions are not nearly as sophisticated as the modern commercial residential split A/C technology. And similar to the attempts here to adapt window type units, they share the same shortcoming: cold air collects along the floor because cool air falls, it doesnít rise.


Sergei



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Old 03-31-2012, 05:27 PM   #36
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Hi Sergei
Thanks for showing up and sharing.
Must to confess that your set up is so far the one that we like the most and the got the search option exhausted
We hope that you don't mind to share some feedback on your AC installation like:
a) Considering the size of your trailer and where the ac split is located how long does it normally takes to cool down the whole trailer when is really really hot?
b) Is the split located in top of the bed? doesn't freeze you guys up and the rest of the trailer is just warm?
c) Is it possible to use your system and also ducted around the AS?
d) is your system 120V or 240V?
We hope that you don't mind but is good to know that there is someone out there that is willing to take a different route and got it done!
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Old 04-01-2012, 12:19 PM   #37
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Go into an Airstream - supposedly a premium rig (at least it has a premium price) - and you can't even hold a conversation or listen to the radio or TV. What gives? Is Airstream listening?

Let's not throw out the baby with the bathwater. The current roof A/C units may lack aesthetic and are noisy but they are also simple to install, use and replace. There is no complexity of ducting, refrigerant lines and controls.

An A/S is "supposed" to be lighter weight as well as aerodynamic (however much A/S has gotten away from this), so a trailer most likely to be used in comfortable conditions -- where one wishes to be outside -- is not compatible with the higher principle. The real drawback isn't aesthetic but the worsening of trailer COG with that 90# on the roof (think lever length).

We can make the same argument about the heating system. Why are interior storm windows not standard, or walls not thicker with better insulating values? Cost, complexity, weight, size & reliability.

I'm no fan of these units in dispute (and I much appreciate the links above) but even high end motorhomes like the BLUEBIRD Wanderlodge right through the 1980's used multiple roof units as a highly popular option even though weight & complexity otherwise noted was no real concern. What was a concern was reliablity and service. The alternatives (basement mount) were authorized dealer only units for parts & service. So, even though the basement units (which did not take any relative storage away from a literal bus) were powerful, they weren't as popular as one might think. Or, were later removed and roof units added in their stead.

As I live even farther south than the OP (and in a sub-climate where one can make the argument that it is even hotter) I've no love for the "noise". I turned on my unit (a new 15k Coleman) at 1100 today (and for the past several weeks) and will run it until probably 2000. The temps won't even hit 80F outside, but full sun means A/C use in light of humidity, etc. A second unit is needed (and conversion to 50A service) once summer is underway. OTOH, this unit is powerful enough (fan) to leave no area without airflow. I use a fan to return air to the trailer center from the front lounge.

A friend in the refrigeration business (warehouse unit size) indicates that, IIRC, these 15k unit are about the equivalent of one-ton of A/C. Therefore I wouldn't even hesitate to "oversize" any cooling unit[s]. My concern would be the "amount" of electricity needed. This is where we go from the pretense of being mobile to being tied to utilities for A/C use (short of bigger & bigger generators). The trade-offs need to be considered over just aesthetic or relative sound level.

Great thread. Thanks for links, and look forward to more. Bookmarked.

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Old 04-02-2012, 10:48 PM   #38
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Rednax makes some good points. We all would like to have an a/c system that was quiet with good distribution of cold air. It would be nice if it had an Seer of >18 and used propane too, but that is not going to happen. However it still needs to be light, inexpensive, easy to service and reliable. Maybe one partial solution is insulation for the windows, skylights and vents to cut down on the solar heat gain. I would also like to know what is the most efficient and quiet air conditioner in a smaller size. Selecting a smaller size would help in the noise level and also result in it using less energy. Maybe if we insulate the openings in the insulation envelope we can use an 11-13k btu unit instead of a 15k unit. Maybe this would also allow using one smaller generator than two small generators in parallel.

Dan
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Old 04-05-2012, 11:00 AM   #39
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utopia

Well it seems like the quiet efficient and with a great cold air distribution all over the AS is an utopia....
So far seems like the Split system is the best choice and will probably give the option for the idea of ducting.
Still a lot of questions about the refrigeration for the AS and hope that other members can help as well as SmokelessJoe.
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Old 04-05-2012, 02:45 PM   #40
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Veggie,

Some of your questions might be answered in this post to my main thread; see #673:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f227...-18448-49.html

I honestly donít know how much time it takes to cool the trailer down. That would depend on the ambient temperature, of course, but it isnít long.

The air temperature isnít consistent all over the trailer. It is understandably colder near the blower head and less so the further you get from there. But the cabin is comfortable and the air movement is SILENT everywhere.

In my case, the AC is usually off for sleeping but if it needed to run all night Iíd rather use a blanket than be kept up all night by noise.

I donít live in a super hot area of the continent so I donít know for sure how the split would perform there. Iím sure it will be superior to a roof mount.

I think that the biggest problem with air conditioning an Airstream is the trailer itself. They are largely still made the way they were 50 years ago, this despite all the advances in insulation and technology.

So if you are going to gut your trailer you should think about that issue first. If you want to go mini split-air you also need to think about where the outside unit will go.

In my case I was able to mount the compressor on the tongue because I have no LP tanks. I went diesel for heating and cooking.

Unless you are a boondocker you can achieve the same thing by going all-electric. Iíve always thought that an all-electric 12v/120v trailer is a perfectly reasonable solution if you are not boon docking.

You would want a generator for layovers and emergencies.

I donít think you can modify a split unit to add ducting.

In any case, a ducted system would probably turn out to be even more involved than going split for no real benefit. What you really want in a small space like an Airstream is air movement, not restriction.

They also make mini-splits with dual heads. Iím guessing that something like that would condition your trailer as well as anything might.

Friedrich M24DYF Ductless Mini-Split System - Free Shipping | Sylvane


Finally, whenever you advance a non-traditional idea you will always have nay-sayers coming out to warn you about straying from the so-called path, even when that path leaves a lot to be desired.

Then it is good to remember a Steve Jobs saying: ď Donít let the noise of othersí opinions drown out your own inner voice.Ē

Good luck,


Sergei


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Old 06-05-2012, 03:22 PM   #41
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it can br done!

YES! it can be done!
We were in the road for a longer period than we expected and while getting into a Rest Area in the Florida Turnpike to get some diesel I noticed the big remodeling going on.
My curiosity was big by seen the 1 RV air conditioner for 3 bathrooms so I went to take a look and I found this:
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Old 07-02-2012, 11:37 AM   #42
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Ducted AC in SOB

I saw a ducted AC set up in an SOB that was interesting. It appeared to have a Dometic AC with a fitting that covered the air discharge vents at each end with duct work that then extended down the ceiling in both directions. Small circular vents were in the duct every few feed and the unit cooled the trailer in on a hot day very well. It was also very quite. The pictures below provides more details.

Don
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