cooling your tent or van

Swamp Coolers, Cooler Management, Dry Ice, Misting Systems, and just plain how to beat the heat.
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FIGJAM
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Thu Jul 31, 2014 10:04 am

You don't HAVE to splice the pump and fan together.

That was just for convenience.

Just put some clips on the wires from the pump and fan, then clip to the battery terminals.

The fan will only work when connected correctly, but it won't hurt it if you get it backwards.

The pump will work no matter which way you hook it up, but will put out twice as much water when connected correctly. 8)
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FIGJAM
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Thu Jul 31, 2014 10:08 am

DEEL, yes that pump is fine.

Aspen pads are MOOPY and hard to work with.
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snardy
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by snardy » Thu Jul 31, 2014 10:09 am

FIGJAM wrote:You don't HAVE to splice the pump and fan together.

That was just for convenience.

Just put some clips on the wires from the pump and fan, then clip to the battery terminals.

The fan will only work when connected correctly, but it won't hurt it if you get it backwards.

The pump will work no matter which way you hook it up, but will put out twice as much water when connected correctly. 8)
Thanks for the fast response.
Again, apologies for my n00bness - can you provide a link to an example of the type of "clips" I should be buying? I want to make sure I get the right thing for attaching to the marine battery's terminals.

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FIGJAM
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Thu Jul 31, 2014 10:12 am

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epicurio
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by epicurio » Thu Jul 31, 2014 12:38 pm

This is a relatively small thing, but I thought I'd make note of it for other people as well. In the last set of instructions posted on page 90, you said that the outer duracool pad should be cut to 30"x13". I think I also saw that you aim for about 1/4" of space between the inside of the bucket holes and the pad. FYI, I had to cut the pad to about 28 1/2" and then seam it to get about 1/4" of space. At 30", the pad was pressed up against the inside of the holes in my bucket.

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FIGJAM
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Thu Jul 31, 2014 12:53 pm

This has come up a couple of times.

Weird bucket sizes that change for reasons I don't know.

So let's change that to "Cut to fit"!!! 8)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Disco_Steve » Fri Aug 01, 2014 3:52 pm

Figjam, Thanks so much for responding to our questions! It was extremely helpful.
We buckled down and bought the more powerful fan. The holes, lid, and duracool are all cut!
In the initial instructions it mentions connecting the tube of duracool using either silicone or stitching it up.
Any preference between these two methods? Have either proven more fail proof on the playa / after years of use?
Thanks again, we'll be sure to share pictures of our finished results! :mrgreen:

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by unjonharley » Fri Aug 01, 2014 4:23 pm

I used a little Goop glue.. it did the trick.. Also Goop is good playa glue.. It holds in the heat and dust..
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FIGJAM
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Fri Aug 01, 2014 4:40 pm

I used 100% silicone on the one I still use.

You'll have to set the tube shaped pad in something while the silicone sets up.

I've also stapled those seams. 8)
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conundrum
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by conundrum » Fri Aug 01, 2014 6:39 pm

Any reason you use the short piece of vertical 4" sceptic connector before going to the 90 degree elbow? My Home Behemoth only has 4" PVC elbows, I can just glue that straight on the lid right?

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FIGJAM
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Fri Aug 01, 2014 7:52 pm

Yes, but it won't fit under the handle for easy carrying. 8)
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Jyman
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Jyman » Fri Aug 01, 2014 11:40 pm

sfcraigd wrote:Jyman: I built virtually the same cooler, using an identical gray trash can. Can you share (1) how you get a good seal between your cooler and the side of the yurt, and (2) what you used for the top? Those are my final challenges.
1)
I chopped off the lip of the trash can on that one side and reinforced it with a cheap stiff metal ruler and duct tape. The lip gets kinda thin and flimsy once you do this so reinforcing is a must. But this how you eliminate a gap where the cooler hits the outide yurt wall




Cut a nice tight window for the fan to stick through. I fitted mine raised to fit the cooler when sitting on a milk crate. (had to notch out a small bit for the plug to slide through nicely [bottom right of the fan])



Lastly, on playa I tape sealed the yurt vertically outside along the window length (with hexayurt tape). Worked as intended, stayed nice and sealed.



2)
For my top I used some sheet acrylic and cut it to shape. Anything flat and rigid will work.



I didn't have time for attaching it with a hinge and instead used mini-bungees. Worked perfectly, kept the top secure and sealed well and it's nice to have a fully removable top for refills or servicing. They just went over the top to pull it down tight and hooked in the intake vents (just make sure they don't snap back and slap you in the eyes when messing with them):


conundrum
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by conundrum » Sun Aug 03, 2014 9:56 pm

I'm trying to cool a 7x7 foot small tent for two people using the bucket design. I ordered this fan and this pump which will draw .95A together. I figure the most I would run it is 5 hours a day, and we'll be there 6 days, so that's ~30Ah so I'm looking for a battery of at least 40 Ah to be safe, correct?

We are flying into Reno and mailing supplies ahead, but figure it is better to just buy the battery in Reno(I will find something on Monday, right???) I wanted to test out the components and troubleshoot before, and was wondering the cheapest way to do so. Would I have to go for a 12V battery, or could I get away with a 6V lantern type (~11Ah) just to make sure nothing is DOA? Thanks!!

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FIGJAM
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Sun Aug 03, 2014 10:17 pm

Get a 55 or 60 AH battery.

You can test with your car battery or a 12 volt battery charger if it's not a smart charger.
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leftynaut
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by leftynaut » Mon Aug 04, 2014 2:23 pm

Alright FIGJAM, I'm working on building one of these bad boys...

I think I have every part I need (I've bought basically everything you mentioned in your original post, except I got

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Solar-Water-Pum ... 417313ae89

that pump, instead of the expensive non-solar one. my next step is battery. so I just go to Costco... get a deep cycle marine... and then run the red wire of the fan to the positive, and the black wire to a ground somewhere? is that pretty much all that I have left to do?

also, what size are your holes in the original design?

thanks!

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by leftynaut » Mon Aug 04, 2014 3:08 pm

leftynaut wrote:Alright FIGJAM, I'm working on building one of these bad boys...

I think I have every part I need (I've bought basically everything you mentioned in your original post, except I got

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Solar-Water-Pum ... 417313ae89

that pump, instead of the expensive non-solar one. my next step is battery. so I just go to Costco... get a deep cycle marine... and then run the red wire of the fan to the positive, and the black wire to a ground somewhere? is that pretty much all that I have left to do?

also, what size are your holes in the original design?

thanks!
wait, i did some more research and it looks like it would be easy to get a cigarette lighter to battery clamps adapter. then, I splice the wires from a cigarette plug into the fan wires.

i'm thinking I should also have a backup battery plan for the pump in case of clouds.... the pump I bought essentially has a solar panel with a female plug. i'm thinking i should get another cigarette plug, and splice the wires into a seperate female plug, and then plan to plug that into the battery (with a splitter) if need be. that makes sense, right? do you know where i'd be able to get an extra female plug to make this happen?

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FIGJAM
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Mon Aug 04, 2014 5:49 pm

According to spec on that pump, the max height is 45cm (about a foot and a half)

That doesn't look good to me.

It's 7 volts, so you might burn it out with 12 volts.

This one works!!!

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Ultra-quiet-Min ... 2a40574e0e
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leftynaut
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by leftynaut » Mon Aug 04, 2014 10:27 pm

FIGJAM wrote:According to spec on that pump, the max height is 45cm (about a foot and a half)

That doesn't look good to me.

It's 7 volts, so you might burn it out with 12 volts.

This one works!!!

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Ultra-quiet-Min ... 2a40574e0e
ah got it, thanks. i think i jumped the gun on the pump. whoops.

so that little pump and the fan you originally recommended... hook them both up to a deep cycle and call it a day?

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FIGJAM
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Tue Aug 05, 2014 6:14 am

That's the easiest way. 8)
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jwfold7777
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by jwfold7777 » Tue Aug 05, 2014 8:33 am

Hello all,

I'm a unicooler veteran, but needing to fly to the burn this year is requiring a bucket cooler. Going fine so far but, I have one question to pose to the experienced members of the community:

1. What is the best way of attaching the 90 degree PVC pipe to the top of the bucket lid? The lip of the PVC seems a bit narrow to rely only on silicone to do the trick. How do you beautiful people do it? Am I missing something? Probably.

Anyway, thoughts/ideas on the best, common, or other useful ways to make the connection solid could be appreciated. Thanks.

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FIGJAM
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Tue Aug 05, 2014 8:46 am

GOOP!!! 8)
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Royal Turkey
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Royal Turkey » Tue Aug 05, 2014 10:30 am

Alright I built this in the fall, but haven't gotten around to testing it, figured it was time :)

I am getting some gaping of the pad away from the grate though.. I tried stringing some low gauge wire through the pad but was leary of opening holes in the pad. any advice here?

just to share:
This is only a prototype, my brother and I are flying out, It is designed so I can gut this one, buy a new slimjim trashcan out there and re-install the innards. I am bringing the lid (with weatherstrip gasket), bungie cord, the pvc, pump, fan and grate distributed through our luggage. (see what TSA thinks of that.) Also it is not that clear to see but I made a sort of adapter plate out of FRP board, so I only need to cut out the 2 square holes in a new trashcan, silicone the seams and I am good. Will use some 4" closed cell foam to use to seal the vent to the wall.
pics:
https://www.dropbox.com/sc/9s5kvpbhtgcx ... hzdCWe2bfa

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/e3ltho3gc70q ... XuaWcGMYUa

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/uo2sskz15x7o ... J0VsNCInha

Ano
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Ano » Tue Aug 05, 2014 11:21 am

Hey folks, need some insight as to how to maximize our swamp cooler.



We have the above linked tent. We use it without the rainfly. The tent has three big vents - two on the sides, one on the zipper door. We've let them unsealed, as we usually keep the tent underneath a carport and don't have much dust blowing in. We also don't mind some dust :)

Our carport is the typical costco carport. Sealed on all the sides and roof, but we leave the windows open during the day to get some airflow in.

We want to set up our swamp cooler so that it blows into the tent. We have some air ducting hooked up to our Swamp cooler, and the cooler flawlessly blows through the ducting. We were thinking of chopping a hole into one side of the venting and having the duct come in from above where we sleep, sort of blowing down into our space. Or, having the swamp cooler blow inwards from the zipper door.

My question is - would I be better off sealing most of the tent vents, making it more of an enclosed space, and setting up a fan to circulate air outwards (thinking one fan blowing out the door?)

Or, sealing it up entirely, creating an enclosed space?

Or should we leave it totally open?

I figure we should seal it a bit so that we keep the air inside the tent, and circualte it out. If we left it open, wouldn't the cooler also be blowing air out of the tent and into the carport, which would effectively cool nothing, I think? I feel that by sealing off most of the vents (but leaving them flapping a bit, so air can get out, and also setting up a fan to help circulate the air out) would create a space that would be cooled much more effectively than leaving it open.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by LowePro » Tue Aug 05, 2014 11:32 am

Test it at home if you can. I think a fan blowing out is unnecessary. The swamp cooler blowing in will create some air pressure inside the tent. If you leave one of the windows partially unzipped on the other side of the tent, it should be enough to let the air pressure escape. And some air pressure will leak thru the tent material itself. You may have to experiment with how much to leave the vent unzipped to find the best balance between keeping cool air in and venting. I bet leaving it a few inches open would be perfect. Suggest leaving the unzipped part of the window near the TOP of the tent. Keep the other windows zipped up

You can just zip the door closed around the swamp cooler duct, you might not need to disfigure the tent at all.

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FIGJAM
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Tue Aug 05, 2014 11:32 am

You don't need a vent fan.

Ideally you want a tiny bit of positive pressure in the tent.

This makes it almost impossible for dust to come in through the exhaust vent of the tent.

Seal up the mesh that can't be closed with a zipper, and use a zippered window to adjust the venting.

To duct the air into the tent from the cooler, just cut an X in part of the mesh to put the tube through.

Then you can use Velcro to close the X when you don't need it. 8)
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Ano
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Ano » Tue Aug 05, 2014 11:52 am

Thanks for the quick and thorough replies. That will be what we do then! I thought a fan would aid in the circulation, but pressure sounds fancier and much more awesome.

I'm gonna have to post some pictures of my set-up soon to prove that even the dumbest of people (me) can build something.

sfcraigd
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by sfcraigd » Tue Aug 05, 2014 1:46 pm

Jyman, thanks for your narrative and photos. Super helpful.

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Joeln
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Joeln » Thu Aug 07, 2014 7:17 am

I'll be building one shortly.
Thanks to all for the many tips, pics and links.
Many wrong steps can be avoided because you folks have tried so many variants.
:mrgreen:
Collapse first and avoid the rush

Disco_Steve
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Disco_Steve » Fri Aug 08, 2014 12:51 am

Uh Oh!
So our initial cut of Duracool for our bucketcooler was 13"x30", however it was still rubbing against the bucket wall.
We cut it down a bit, as several people have claimed they've had to do in this thread.
However, now we're worried we cut it down a little TOO much! Its about an 1" from the bucket walls.
Are there detrimental from being the duracool tube being too small? Is it worth re-cutting a new piece?

>_> leaving in two weeks..I should probably get this project finished!

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FIGJAM
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Fri Aug 08, 2014 8:33 am

The only problem would be the fan fitting inside the inner pad.

You can silicone a strip of pad back on and recut.

I've done this!!! 8)
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