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Old 02-07-2007, 08:19 PM   #1
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1963 16' Bambi
Metairie , Louisiana
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Carlson Wall Heater in '63 Bambi (Model 8M)

I posted a question the other day but didn't have all the information correct, but now I have it.

I have a Carlson Wall heater in my '63 Bambi that I am having trouble keeping lit. I cannot just lite the Pilot without the burner firing up also. then a few seconds later...it shuts off.

does anyone know if there is still parts around for these dinosaurs?

I have a feeling that the efficiency for these things is horrible and have considered getting a small catalytic heater. So if this thing is unrepairable I have a backup plan.
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Old 02-07-2007, 09:31 PM   #2
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Only thing I can think of is to make sure the probe for the thermocouple is within the flame of the pilot, it may cool and turn off the pilot.
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Old 02-07-2007, 10:54 PM   #3
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1971 21' Globetrotter
1963 19' Globetrotter
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I have a Carlson in my '63 Globe Trotter. I don't know if it's the same as the ones in the Bambi, but on pictures I find, it looks similar. I had trouble keeping my pilot lit also. I was able to replace the thermocouple; it seems that thermocouples are pretty generic. On the other hand, something sounds wrong with yours because the main burner shouldn't come on if you are lighting the pilot. My control knob has three positions. If I remember correctly, totally counter-clockwise position is "off" . Fully clockwise position is "pilot'. You should be trying the light it in the "pilot" position! Midway between the two extremes is "on". The main burner only comes on in the "on" position. If your main burner is coming on in the "pilot" position, your gas control is probably shot. I certainly wouldn't use the heater if that's the case. When I've asked about repairing the Carlson, I just get either blank stares, or "Sorry, you can't get parts for those". But, I feel that with the proper know-how, one could cobble in a new gas valve and make the heater work properly. (They are not that high tech!)
Fortunately, my Carlson does work. The fire box is not rusted, and I checked the vent tubes to make sure they don't leak. I like the way it heats the trailer silently without using any electricity. I also like the fact that the combustion products are going outside (unlike catalytic heaters). I do wish it had a thermostat in it that would turn the burner off when the trailer is sufficiently warm .....but the way it's made, it is either "on" or "off". If you turn the knob somewhere between "on" and "pilot", however, you can throttle the main burner back some. I don't know if that's recommended, but that's what I do. It gets the trailer blazing hot in 20 degree weather, I can tell you!

I hope somebody else can be of more help than I am .....
MARC
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Old 02-07-2007, 11:30 PM   #4
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One other tip. I found my pilot would blow out if I left the little door you light the pilot from open. I quess it creates a draft. Once I quit leaving it open to watch what was happening it started workig right.

I am out of town til Sunday but at home I have a copy of the carlson manual. It may be on the VAC web site also.
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Old 02-08-2007, 08:14 AM   #5
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1963 16' Bambi
Metairie , Louisiana
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbond
I am out of town til Sunday but at home I have a copy of the carlson manual. It may be on the VAC web site also.
I have some paperwork on it...maybe not what you have, I would love to see it if you have a way of getting a electronic copy of it to me.
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