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Old 07-01-2006, 08:28 PM   #15
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"Proper" Cooling

Quote:
Originally Posted by acrane
I am new, our ac does not cool our 31' the way I think it should (or want to it, lol). You are talking about a windowless unit. Is that because the one on top of your trailers just don't cool sufficiently?

Thanks,

Alice
Proper cooling can mean one thing to you and another thing to me. Your unit may need more refrigerant, a good cleaning of the condensor and evaporator, to be in the shade, to be in a cooler climate. These are just a few suggestions.
I think the reason the people, including myself want a "windowless" unit is so that it doesn't mess with the classic lines of our older Bambi II's which were seldom fitted with A/C units from the factory.
Kev
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Old 07-02-2006, 09:26 AM   #16
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Hi Alice, My project is for other reasons than just cooling. Your 31' AS looks just fine with one or two roof A/C units. The problem with the older small trailers like a Bambi is that they do not look right with modern roof units. Picture if you attended an Afternoon Tea Social wearing a Cowboy Hat instead of a Lace Sun Hat. You get the idea. I had considered a Carrier low profile but they actually are too cold and they do not look right. I am trying to come up with something special for this project.

By the way, I highly reccomend The Carrier Low profile. Outside air temp, insulation, sun load, internal heat generated and air infiltration all play a part in how much a/c you need. Here in Fla in full sun a 31' AS would need two 15k units if you like that arctic feel. Turn one off at night.

Good Luck
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Old 07-02-2006, 09:55 AM   #17
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I've seen a windowless unit at Sam's Club. One of the stickers on the side noted that the unit's performance was not equivalent to a same sized BTU window air conditioner.

Jack
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Old 07-02-2006, 09:58 AM   #18
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Steve,

I, too, have been researching this problem for my 1959 Overlander, which wasn't built for rooftop air and wouldn't, IMO, look good with one.

I don't really like how any of the portables look/sound, and they take up a lot of floorspace. I did see an interesting installation of a split system, with the outside unit installed on the tongue behind the gas tanks. The pic is somewhere on these forums, sorry I can't find the link right now. But I would have to make major mods to my tongue, and move my battery somewhere.

I'm pretty much leaning toward putting a Cool Cat AC/heat pump under the little bench just fore of my streetside range/sink counter, right where my Suburban furnace used to be, and camoflaging the installation on the outside with the original vent cover. I decided I'd rather use a unit designed for this type of installation, instead of trying to "jerry-rig" a household unit. Also, the Cool Cat is the right shape (deeper than wide) and the window units aren't. The Cool Cat is expensive, but I think a more straightforward solution for me.

I just hope 12,000 BTU is enough cooling capacity in the shade in Texas for my 26-footer. Heating is far less of a concern here, altho I am looking at adding a catalytic for back-up, if I can figure out a good location. Otherwise, may just use an electric oil-filled radiator -- that's how we heat our huge bedroom at night in the winter, and it often does TOO good a job!

I like this thread! Hope someone comes up with a solution we haven't heard about yet!
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Old 07-02-2006, 10:10 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acrane
I am new, our ac does not cool our 31' the way I think it should (or want to it, lol). You are talking about a windowless unit. Is that because the one on top of your trailers just don't cool sufficiently?

Thanks,

Alice
Alice,

While I don't know the brand or state of your current air conditioner, I can tell you that in my dealings, the 13.5 K unit on new trailers is marginal once you get to temperatures that exceed the mid 90's if you are in a full sun situation.

On my maiden voyage with our then new '01 27' Safari, we took the new owners of my previous SOB camping on a hot summer weekend in Hannibal Mo. We ended up in spots next to each other in the full sun. My SOB was a 28' model also with a 13.5 K air conditioner. Once we hit 10AM the air conditioner compressor ran full time. We lost ground all day with the temp outside peaking at 102 and inside we were between 86-88 degrees. My old SOB was just fine.

I took the trailer back to the dealer's and eventually back to Jackson Center, where the unit was diagnosed. Everything was running to specs, and the folks at Jackson Center found no air intrusions or lack of insulation. Much to my distress in questioning Airstream as to the standard that they size to (dependent upon outside temperatures, what do you engineer you A/C's to do?), no one could admit to one.

Dometic stated that their standard for a properly operating A/C unit was a 15 to 20 degree drop across the coils on intake air to the cold air exhaust. Mine was performing at 18 degrees. It was just a matter that aluminum didn't have the reflective abilities of my old white SOB, therefore the unit was undersized and unable to overcome the outside heat gain.

I never forgot that trip and from then on usually camped under some or partial shade. I also added a street side awning to the Safari. When I had my 30' Classic built I upgraded to the 15K air conditioner. I've not had an issue with this trailer to this point.

My point to you that if your current A/C unit is sick and you need to replace, dependent upon your travels you may want to go to a bigger unit.

Jack
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Old 07-02-2006, 10:37 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1959newbie
Steve,

I, too, have been researching this problem for my 1959 Overlander, which wasn't built for rooftop air and wouldn't, IMO, look good with one.
I'm pretty much leaning toward putting a Cool Cat AC/heat pump under the little bench just fore of my streetside range/sink counter, right where my Suburban furnace used to be, and camoflaging the installation on the outside with the original vent cover. I decided I'd rather use a unit designed for this type of installation, instead of trying to "jerry-rig" a household unit. Also, the Cool Cat is the right shape (deeper than wide) and the window units aren't. The Cool Cat is expensive, but I think a more straightforward solution for me.

I just hope 12,000 BTU is enough cooling capacity in the shade in Texas for my 26-footer.

I like this thread! Hope someone comes up with a solution we haven't heard about yet!
Lynne,
The CoolCat may be a good solution for you because you have the room. I have seen them on class B motorhomes. They are a little noisy and they do require a large hole in the wall. Everything is a compromise. It is amazing how many BTUs are required for trailers and Houseboats in full sun. I will keep you posted.
Steve
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Old 07-04-2006, 04:04 PM   #21
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Making progress

Got the test unit running in the Bambi II today. Air temp was 95 degrees and and the trailer was in the shade. My little 6k btu unit pulled the inside temp and humidity down to 75 degrees / 47% humidity in about 30 min. Starting temp/humidity was 90 degrees/85% humidity.

steve
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Old 07-04-2006, 09:37 PM   #22
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Split Air

Steve, Lynne, all:

There are pictures here somewhere of a split unit someone installed.

I thought it was a little makeshift because the gas line poked through the trailer and ran down across the front window.

The compressor sat on the tongue.

The correspondent said the LP tanks had been removed for photo taking but I dont know how they could share the space. A compressor like that should have about 25 clearance at the air intake.

Like several here, my main consideration in deciding my A/C system was not to ruin the lines of the Argosy 24.

Im installing the LG Art Cool split unit in my trailer. See it here:

http://www.lgaircon.co.uk/product.php

The inside blower unit is 22 square and only 5 deep. It looks like a piece of modern art and is so quiet that you have to look to see if the LED lamps indicate that its running.

The compressor will sit on the tongue, were the LP tanks used to be.

This is easier for me because Im switching to diesel for everything -heating space and water plus cooking - and wont need space for them.

Lynne, a disadvantage of the Cool Cat is that its floor mounted.

Heat rises. Cold falls. Cool air should float down from a ceiling, not hang around on a floor.

Steve, whats your secret solution? Curious.


Sergei
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Old 07-04-2006, 10:19 PM   #23
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I just got back from a 4-day trip to temperature hell - over 100 most of the daytime hours. This was also the first test of my converted window A/C.
I converted a window unit to inhale cooling air through the floor of the trailer, and exhale it through a vent in the side of the trailer. The vent looks like a vintage refrigerator vent when closed. I prop it open for extra airflow, when the A/C is running at medium or high, and leave it closed on low A/C.
It worked well, very well indeed, considering that only one of the two 4" ducts was connected, the other one closed off with a rag.
It cooled the trailer ( 1963 Overlander) to where you could feel a temp shock walking into it, in the mid afternoon.
I see no way to install a functional a/c without some sacrifices on space, weight and styling...I ended up cutting up the trailer to make mine work, but the results are surprisingly good.
My installation is not finished yet, but once completed, I anticipate an even better air distribution.
The system is about as noisy as a fantastic fan on medium speed. It is located under our bed, and the foam and insulation muffles it considerably. There is little to no vibration. I took a nap on top of it, and it did not bother me one bit.
An installation like that requires some serious modfications, but it is not impossible, and can be done by a hobbyist like myself. There is more information on it, including some recent post at my thread "a 63 for me...."
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Old 07-05-2006, 12:14 AM   #24
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I put a window unit in a cupboard directly above my fridge in my 21' Flying Cloud. Shared vents with the fridge, and put a fan behind to circulate the air. It worked okay, but noticed on our trip last week in 100 degree weather that the fridge struggled to stay cool and we got cool with the A/C but not what I wanted.

I do not have a hot water heater (an inline water heater is going to go in yet this summer) but a vintage hotwater heater box and vented door are still in place. I am going to move the A/C to that space utilizing the water heater door for venting and that way my fridge won't be in overload mode and the A/C will have it's own venting and still be unobtrusive. It will take a bit of creative metal and woodwork but nothing a fun day in the shop won't address. I realize that this means the cold air will be coming in at just above floor level but given the small size of the trailer it will cool down very quickly and it will also be moved about by a fan we have mounted on the side of the cupboard so this should work well. Will let you know how it turns out.

Another thought we'd had was as Uwe has done - put it under the bed with the vent out to the back storage door. When in use we'd leave that back door open enough to provide venting. The only thing I was concerned about there was the potential for critters to move it but with proper screening (not thought this through in detail yet) that would not be an issue.

Barry
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Old 07-05-2006, 07:55 AM   #25
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Im installing the LG Art Cool split unit in my trailer. See it here:

http://www.lgaircon.co.uk/product.php

The inside blower unit is 22 square and only 5 deep. It looks like a piece of modern art and is so quiet that you have to look to see if the LED lamps indicate that its running.

The compressor will sit on the tongue, were the LP tanks used to be.

This is easier for me because Im switching to diesel for everything -heating space and water plus cooking - and wont need space for them.

Lynne, a disadvantage of the Cool Cat is that its floor mounted.

Heat rises. Cold falls. Cool air should float down from a ceiling, not hang around on a floor.

Steve, whats your secret solution? Curious.


Sergei
[/quote]

Thanks for the post Sergei,
That is the nicest unit I have seen so far. I must have missed it in all my searches because it looks like there is no US dist. Once again, European appliances are a decade ahead. The website did not show any dimensions on the outside unit. Do you have any? I am going to guess that it is too big for a Bambi, however, I might want to put one in my Hobbi Toy hauler.

I agree, most homemade solutions lack refinement in the final touches. I am trying to apply what I have learned by building sport aircraft.

My project is built from scratch and I am sizing it no larger that needed to cool a Bambi in partial shade at 100 f. All wires and cooling lines need to be concealed. The outside unit needs to be no larger than 8"thick and 16" tall by 20" wide. As seen here on other threads, AC in most trailers tend to be too little in full sun and too much at night. The other factor here is power consumption. Right now I am only using 600 watts. At that rate I can run all night on a Honda 2000i for less than 2 gal of fuel. Right now I am at about 6k btu but I think I will go up to about 8k. If The btu capacity is too large then you end up with a cold damp trailer at night and the compressor cycles every 2 min. If the btu is too small you can't cool during the day.

steve
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Old 07-05-2006, 08:22 AM   #26
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Sergei,
just took a look at a Canada site that offers the LG unit. It uses an Inverter driven compressor. The big advantage is that the speed of the compressor can be controlled to meet cooling requirements. I wish that RV AC makers would take note. You should have total climate control. (Temp/humidity/No short cycles)

steve
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Old 07-05-2006, 09:33 AM   #27
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Steve:

I got my Art Cool from a distributor in Toronto.

They are available in both the USA and Canada. Ive seen them in Canada for at least 3 years.

This is the Canadian LG site:

http://ca.lge.com/en/proddivergent.d...rch&categoryId

Heres the USA one:

http://us.lge.com/products/category/...l%202005.jhtml

Im going to try to upload the Canadian spec sheet for you, a PDF file.

The inside blower unit is 22 by 22 and 5 deep. It weighs 15 pounds.

The compressor is 30 long by 21 high by 9.5 wide. It weighs 73 pounds.

The total weight involved is 3 or 4 pounds less than the Carrier Low profile, if I remember correctly.

Ive installed two split units in buildings. They are fantastic.

It remains to be seen how in will work in a trailer but my suspicion is that it will be superior to anything being commonly used now.

We will probably run the wire to the compressor later today. I will place the unit on the tongue and take a photo for you at that time.


Sergei




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Old 07-05-2006, 09:38 AM   #28
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Steve:

I see that our mail crossed mid air. The Brochure file, 4 pages, wouldn't attach. You can easily down load it from the LG Canadian site.

I understand zero about electronics, etc. so I was happy to note your comment on inverter efficiency. I didn't know this. Good news.

Sergei
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