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Old 01-12-2014, 07:32 PM   #1
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Somewhere in Grass Valley , California
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Old Carlson gravity heater floor

The Carlson 1080 model

The person owner of step van before me told me these old propane gravity heater haven't working for around 25 yrs and he says was not able to lit up pilot or main burner. (Recently I discovered the propane copper tubing was pitched right above of rear leaf spring.)

I am certain some of you folks out there may have these in your air streams, be sure its clean and its safe before you lit up, otherwise it could have been fire if you not careful! here some picture I'd like to share with you.

-- ^ The floor hole.

^ Sure it may looks ok safe to lit up this thing... better hold it! and see below pics...

^ I could see flaw design here, the cap isn't air tight seal, so it will leaking some deadly gas, the carbon monoxide! to be more safe modify it pipe thread with gasket something...

^ What do you see in there? a yellow fiberglass!?!

^ The exhaust outlet.

^ Removing the bottom cover and you could see lot dirty in there.


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Old 01-12-2014, 07:52 PM   #2
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I had one of these in my first trailer. A 14 foot 1965 Garway.
You don't want to go barefoot and step on that thing either

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Old 01-12-2014, 08:16 PM   #3
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I have not seen or heard of any gravity floor furnaces in an Airstrem. However I would assume any furnace more than 20 years old is dangerous and leaking carbon monoxide until verified that it is indeed safe.

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Old 01-12-2014, 08:49 PM   #4
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There was one of those heaters in the 1954 20-22' Airstream whale tail that I owned in the early 2000's. It could have been original, or added after, I have no idea. But the trailer didn't have any indication that there was ever a vertical panel ray heater in it, so it could have been original. I got it to work but because the gasses vented out under the floor I never would have trusted it to sleep in while operating.
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Old 01-12-2014, 09:00 PM   #5
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Do anyone here knows what year it was start in production and end of production of Carlson floor heater? I am guessing from mid 1950's to mid 1970's

I look it very closer the exchanger metal fins wall under the burner it looks very bad rusted out by wet soaked fiberglass so I am trying to restore it and re-install at same spot floor hole. I like quiet and it don't requires any electrical to run. Plus my step van is tight space not much room to put lot things in it.

So if anyone here have one similar used rust free or little rust 1080 model carlson up for sale id like to buy it.
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Old 01-12-2014, 11:28 PM   #6
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My Dad's 1959 Airstream came with a Carlson floor furnace. His was an 18' International model and the floor furnace saved useing valuable cabinet space for a furnace. The Carlson was definitely produced no later that 1959, as it came as original equipment when Dad ordered this trailer from Jackson Center.
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Old 01-13-2014, 12:10 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by RickDavis View Post
I had one of these in my first trailer. A 14 foot 1965 Garway.
You don't want to go barefoot and step on that thing either
I burned my foot on the floor furnace in my grandparents' house when I was young. It was in the hall so there was just a narrow strip on either side that you could walk on without shoes when the thing was operating.

The floor furnace that was the only heat in our current home when I bought it was the first thing to go, even before the Miami-Vice-pink kitchen cabinets. I don't have physical scars on my foot, but I may have mental ones.

Zero Gravitas 2017 Flying Cloud 26U | Il Progetto 1976 Argosy 28 Center Bath | WBCCI# 15566

He has all of the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire. Sir Winston Churchill
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Old 01-13-2014, 02:54 AM   #8
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Home floor furnaces were a pet "training tool" for the fire marshal in my home town. A few shanty town areas were rife with them, and every winter there were two or three fires and often several members of a family were sickened by carbon monoxide. He collected money from churches and schools to replace these things in the homes of sick and elderly people.

They no longer make them for a reason.

Toss it, PLEASE. The life you save will be YOURS!


Today is a gift, that's why they call it the present.
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