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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EGAZ
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by EGAZ » Mon Aug 15, 2016 8:33 am

That one is rated at 10 amps so it should do the job.
2nd time better than the first. And the first was pretty Freakin' Great!
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Leap
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Leap » Tue Aug 16, 2016 8:37 am

FIGJAM wrote:Everstart 24DC 12 volt deep cycle from wally world weigh 53 pounds, 101AH, and only cost $80!!! 8)
I came here to ask this exact thing! Their website doesn't list AH so I was wondering which one would work. The 24 DC is priced right.

Care to speculate if they will run out of them?

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by gateway » Tue Aug 16, 2016 10:28 am

Im wanting to build one of these this year but the solar power pump from http://www.harborfreight.com/solar-powe ... 66093.html only seems to put out 1.2 watt, which might work for just the pump, but most pc fans take up to 3 watts.. Any thoughts? I plan on making one for my tent this year but will have limited power options..
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Tue Aug 16, 2016 2:43 pm

That pump is barely good enough under perfect conditions.

If you build to spec and bring a battery you'll be happier. 8)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by letsdothis » Tue Aug 16, 2016 5:34 pm

Thank you everyone for all of your help and explanations! Can't wait to be on the playa and meet all of in a couple of weeks.

And thank you FIGJAM for the original design and specs!

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by gingercoffee » Thu Aug 18, 2016 10:52 am

So I'm working on my evap cooler, and I was curious about the padding. The only thing we have available locally is a sort of water filter media, it doesn't really saturate. Will this work at all? (my hunch is that it will not). The local HVAC shop said they can get Aspen pads, has anybody tried these or had success with them?

Also, my first build I used air return vents glued to the sides of a box to prevent water leakage, but now it smells heavily of glue, not my drug of choice. Has anybody had issue with water leakage with just the drilled holes and tips on prevention if it is a problem?

Thanks!

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by EGAZ » Thu Aug 18, 2016 11:00 am

Poly pads require a lot of water as the do not completely saturate. Aspen pads work, (saturate) better, but are very moopy. With care, Ie: don't take the cooler apart, you should be fine. See if your HVAC shop can get 'pads' of Bonded CoolPad. This is a roll but they do sell pads, not at Lowes but HVAC shops.

I don't understand your water leak, return vent issue.
2nd time better than the first. And the first was pretty Freakin' Great!
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by gingercoffee » Thu Aug 18, 2016 11:25 am

Not having any luck with other cooling pad media. One place has duracool, but only a giant $60 roll of it. Is there any DIY material that might work? I've got a surplus of scrap shade cloth... That might be a silly idea though.

I was trying to prevent leakage per advice from a friend who had issues of it with their cooler, but I'm pretty sure it was a design flaw (having the media pressed up against the holes.)

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by EGAZ » Thu Aug 18, 2016 12:13 pm

...having the media pressed up against the holes.)

Ahh, yea that will generate, 'carry over'....

If all you can get is poly then poly it is. Been used for years and works.
2nd time better than the first. And the first was pretty Freakin' Great!
I am Camp2. - A solo camp - Stop by and say Hey!, 8) Gotta beer?

If you are another Solo Burner & very 'Radically Self Reliant' - Maybe we can 'Do What We Do!' :P

LowePro
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by LowePro » Thu Aug 18, 2016 4:34 pm

That rain-foresty online store has Duracool in reasonable quantity. But you gotta do it now, baby! And maybe pay for rush shipping.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Leahpatra » Thu Aug 18, 2016 8:42 pm

[*]
Hey you cool kids,

Just received since sweet sweet cooling pad and wanted to check on the grain direction: as noted it has a grain through it. So do you run the grain up and down the inside of the bucket or do you run it around the perimeter?

Eternally grateful,
Leahpatra

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FIGJAM
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Thu Aug 18, 2016 9:41 pm

Up and down will help it stand up in the bucket better when wet.
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amitrus
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by amitrus » Fri Aug 19, 2016 4:13 pm

@FIGJAM: What think you of this design? http://www.yurtcooler.com/

Pros seem to be: No pump, and (allegedly) more airflow.

Cons seem to be: More current used. Difficult to use with a non-yurt. Maybe insufficient wicking on the cooler pad?

Would love to hear your expert thoughts.

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Re: Re:

Post by cassiepea » Fri Aug 19, 2016 4:35 pm

Hey y'all, finishing up my cooler this weekend, quick question about the size of the pads, do you just want them to cover the intake area or do you want them to go all the way down and rest in the water?

Thanks! One more week! :shock: :D 8)
FIGJAM wrote:
FIGJAM wrote:
FIGJAM wrote:Last year people tried to make the bucket cooler do more than it was ment to do, with moderate success.

The main problems seemed to be a powerful enough fan and how to duct the air into the space.

My box cooler worked great and I never use anything but the low speed on the fan.






NOW INTRODUCING THE UNICOOLER!!!!!!!


No duct work needed!!!

Build a box 17wx30hx9d.

Image

If you cant build a simple box, try to find something waterproof with roughly the same dementions or this.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/ ... ce2010a-20

If you can find something that does'nt have tapered sides it will work better.

Cut a hole for the vent cover. ($11.00)

Image

Image

Cut a hole for the fan. (Endless breeze fan $60-$80)

Image

I used 100% clear silicone caulk to stick these to the box.

Image

The vent louvers are facing down and into the box to keep the water channeled toward the inside.

I got some angle trim and siliconed pieces to the inside of the box to act as a pad retainer.

Image

Image

This cheap pump works well and ships faster if you find a U.S. dealer.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Ultra-Quiet-Min ... 3cd9bd0e15

This is the pump I use.

https://www.greenlivingforu.com/products/fountains

Image

The pvc just lays on the top edge of the pads.

Then I went to the bin (16489-j "junk" subheading A "awsume") and found some handles.

Image

8)

Then make an air tight lid.(figure it out)

Finished cooler looks like this.

Image

Image

I call it the universal cooler cause you just shove the pad side against any opening in a tent, bus, travel trailer, yurt, or playpod and it will cool up to 3000 cubic feet of space. You can even set it on a table outside for use.

Add some foam stickon wheather stripping for a good seal around a window.

Fill it with 7gals. of water for 8hrs. of cooling. So once a day depending on how much you use it.

105ah battery will run this 5hr. a day, all week on low.

You may have to recharge if you use medium or high speed on the fan.

I'm confident that this will cool even a school bus without useing a genny and its a lot quieter than an air conditioner.

As always I'll try to answer any questions you may have.


HERE'S TO A MORE COMFORTABLE BURN!!!

That being said, scroll down to garyt's design on this page.

http://eplaya.burningman.org/viewtopic. ... start=1590

By making it wider, he can take full advantage of the endless breeze fan on high.

The unicoolerI designed tended to restict air flow due to not enough intake area.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Fri Aug 19, 2016 4:56 pm

Cassie, It won't make any difference except that if you don't run the pad clear to the bottom, you will have the relaxing tinkle tinkle sound of a fountain that may drive you to the porto's more often!!! :lol:
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by EGAZ » Fri Aug 19, 2016 5:02 pm

amitrus, I'll jump in here.

Not convinced the wicking works as well as they say. Electrical engineer or no. Wicking a pad is designed for increasing humidity levels not cooling. As the air gets drier, the wicking up the pad is less because you are evaporating the water faster thus pulling through a mostly dry pad. So he has three pads, wet at the bottom half, with the upper half being mostly dry. This in essence is bypassing air and doing no cooling to it. Not a very efficient design.

That fan pulls a lot of amps for what it does. only 100CFM at best, ie no ductwork. And its loud as hell.

And the seal above the pads is weak.

So he removed the pump, runs the same if not more amps, for a louder unit that is not any better than a properly built FigJam cooler.
That's a lot of re-engineering for something that has been proven for years. He is hung up on the 100% humidity at discharge. Well, a properly 'wetted' pad will provide damn near 100% humidity. But it's not humidity alone that allows proper cooling its the dew point. Something he never mentions.



For $130 I can built you a bullet proof unit that will blow its doors off. So to speak. :mrgreen:
2nd time better than the first. And the first was pretty Freakin' Great!
I am Camp2. - A solo camp - Stop by and say Hey!, 8) Gotta beer?

If you are another Solo Burner & very 'Radically Self Reliant' - Maybe we can 'Do What We Do!' :P

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by cassiepea » Fri Aug 19, 2016 5:24 pm

FIGJAM wrote:Cassie, It won't make any difference except that if you don't run the pad clear to the bottom, you will have the relaxing tinkle tinkle sound of a fountain that may drive you to the porto's more often!!! :lol:
Thank you so much for the quick response!
Regarding the intake area, is there such thing as too much open space? I bought some louvered vents but they weren't really the right size, so then I went with something I had on hand. Boyfriend says it's too much "open" area for air to be pulled through. I was pretty confident about doing it this way but now I'm nervous. Any feedback?
Image

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Fri Aug 19, 2016 5:30 pm

The more the merrier when it comes to the air intake.

You don't want anything stopping that fan from doing everything it was designed to do.

Make sure you get that box good and water proofed.

Boat paint, or the roof coating with a finish of spray appliance epoxy has been working well for me. 8)
"Don't buy ur Burn...........Build ur Burn!"

"If I can't find an answer, I'll create one!!!"

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by cassiepea » Fri Aug 19, 2016 5:49 pm

FIGJAM wrote:The more the merrier when it comes to the air intake.

You don't want anything stopping that fan from doing everything it was designed to do.

Make sure you get that box good and water proofed.

Boat paint, or the roof coating with a finish of spray appliance epoxy has been working well for me. 8)
Thank you!
Three coats of spray epoxy followed by two coats of outdoor grade poly on the inside :)
Leaving the outside decorating for last - if we have time ;)
Thanks again for all your help!

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Pootzen » Fri Aug 19, 2016 6:25 pm

FIGJAM wrote:The more the merrier when it comes to the air intake.

You don't want anything stopping that fan from doing everything it was designed to do.

Make sure you get that box good and water proofed.
I probably should have read this comment before I cut these holes today:

Image

Cutting out the back side tomorrow and installing three of these 200mm case fans:
Image

The aspen pad drains into a plastic wastebucket and is pumped back up with this:
Image


Also going to try to get it to fit the curved grooves in my RV side window, and wire everything to the RV deep cycle battery.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by EGAZ » Fri Aug 19, 2016 6:56 pm

LOL, yea, it would have only been four holes and four saw cuts huh?

But style counts!!! :P
2nd time better than the first. And the first was pretty Freakin' Great!
I am Camp2. - A solo camp - Stop by and say Hey!, 8) Gotta beer?

If you are another Solo Burner & very 'Radically Self Reliant' - Maybe we can 'Do What We Do!' :P

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Pootzen » Sat Aug 20, 2016 9:47 am

eldergeekaz wrote:LOL, yea, it would have only been four holes and four saw cuts huh?

But style counts!!! :P
Exactly! I've had that hole saw sitting around for years (ever since I thought about building a bucket cooler), only appropriate that I use it now.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Canoe » Sat Aug 20, 2016 2:38 pm

eldergeekaz wrote:amitrus, I'll jump in here.
Not convinced the wicking works as well as they say. Electrical engineer or no. Wicking a pad is designed for increasing humidity levels not cooling. As the air gets drier, the wicking up the pad is less because you are evaporating the water faster thus pulling through a mostly dry pad. So he has three pads, wet at the bottom half, with the upper half being mostly dry. This in essence is bypassing air and doing no cooling to it. Not a very efficient design.
That fan pulls a lot of amps for what it does. only 100CFM at best, ie no ductwork. And its loud as hell.
And the seal above the pads is weak.
So he removed the pump, runs the same if not more amps, for a louder unit that is not any better than a properly built FigJam cooler.
That's a lot of re-engineering for something that has been proven for years. He is hung up on the 100% humidity at discharge. Well, a properly 'wetted' pad will provide damn near 100% humidity. But it's not humidity alone that allows proper cooling its the dew point. Something he never mentions.
For $130 I can built you a bullet proof unit that will blow its doors off. So to speak. :mrgreen:
All of the above, plus:

It's a wicking design and they state it's only to be run for a few hours each day. There is no pump washing the pad with water, so along with not ensuring that all of the pad area is wet with no dry spots for hot air to sneak through without being cooled, it doesn't rinse off playa dust (something that happens automatically as part of Figjam's designs), so it is dependent on the having an air filter on the air inlet. Good luck when the air filter gets clogged, if it rains, when a strong wind flowing around the yurt creates a vacuum along the wall by the air inlet and inhibits air intake, or it develops a hole (playa wind would never dare blow anything into it...) and fine playa dust gets in and clogs the wicking filter. The idea is to have something that runs well whenever you want it to, is robust and requires less maintenance to do on the playa, not more.

That design also brings hot air inside past your insulating barrier before it starts to be cooled (which occurs as the air flow through the pads - well, at least where it's wicked up enough water to be wet and stay wet with the air flow; their three stage design will help with that, but there's such a small area for airflow that fan is working awfully hard; helps explain why they only get a 60 cfm airflow, which is good, as it would have real issues trying to cool a higher rate of flow), so their design is unnecessarily providing a conductive and radiating heat source inside the interior, which all of their swamp-cooler's surface area before the wicking filters will be doing. This may be related to the difficulty they had cooling the yurt, with their recommendation that you put their design near your bed to cool you directly. Something funny there, as if it's working as well as they claim, it should be replacing the lower 3/4 of the air near the ground inside the yurt with freshly cooled air from the swamp-cooler, as a properly sized Figjam design will.

And they mention steps to take to try to mitigate the noise. Not an issue with the correct fans in Figjam's designs, particularly with the Endless Breeze models.

And they've identified the issue with using wicking filters instead of evaporative cooling pads, requiring a different fan to work to get the air through those filters, and to get through their small cross section.

They're stating a 60 cfm airflow rate, which they claim is better than other DIY designs. Theirs may only provide 60 cfm, but the last claim is hogwash. I'm getting way over 60 cfm with a box cooler with the Endless Breeze.
With Figjan's designs, the fans aren't working to force air through wicking filters nor furnace filters, but use purpose-designed evaporative cooling pads that provide multiple free-flowing paths through the pad while exposing that airflow to a huge wetted surface area:
  • providing a much higher CFM without having to build up a huge static pressure to force their way through wicking filters (and suck past air filters, so the input side of the fan blades are operating in a vacuum, more so as they fill up with the fine playa dust).
  • the pad is also easily washed clean of playa dust by the standard waterflow.
Their fan uses so much current (3A) as it has a lot of work to do. The Endless Breeze at 3A will move 900 CFM in open air, and much quieter, with reports of 1A to 1.5A at 250 CFM.

"(On hexayurt forums, you sometimes read claims that the ground will help cool your yurt. That is not true in places with dry soil such as Burning Man.)"
Obviously not very aware of the layers of the playa soil, nor of how many thousands of Burners have experienced how much heat is lost through the floor of playa structures, with many having them uninsulated during the day, but needing to insulate them at night. Nor of those keeping their meds cool in a hole in the ground in the shade (is it 64F?).

Although with the serious gaps in the yurt wall seams, I can understand why they had heat issues in their yurt. A huge amount of heat coming through there by not having the wall panels meet up well; then seams not even covered on the outside by heat reflective foil tape. During the day, with so much heating coming in through those defects, they wouldn't stand a chance of observing the heat performance of a properly constructed hexahurt.

Give them bonus points for attempting to model heat in a yurt, but they're going to have to use actual values instead of guesses, and factor in the huge playa radiated heat and model the actual performance of the panels, including the reflective performance of the outside surface radiant barrier and the inside surface low-emittance radiant barrier. It's much more complicated than they think. So bonus points for effort, but a hugely incomplete fantasy model doesn't change real-world performance, as their observed issues with their design illustrate.

Just read through all their pages for all their published deficiencies. They can edit the pages to remove them, but that won't fix the design's deficiencies/issues.

All in all, they're lost in a bunch of facts that they theorize mean something will or won't work, only they don't add up, then ignore the practical results, while they have to post half-baked solutions to their reported practical observed performance deficiencies of their design. You've got a few interesting trees in there, but forest vs. trees gentlemen.

It's an interesting design to contemplate, if you like to experiment with designs, but in it's current published form, not if you want reliable maintenance free cooling on the playa.
Video games are giving kids unrealistic expectations on how many swords they can carry.
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Pootzen
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Pootzen » Mon Aug 22, 2016 5:48 pm

Tested my box build and it's leaking, guess I'm off to the store for Bondo putty and spray foam to try to get it playa-ready in time.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Canoe » Mon Aug 22, 2016 5:56 pm

Depending on what you've already treated the box with..
Gorilla Glue cures by absorbing moisture. I've used it to fix my playa trailer roof when water was leaking in a seam and through and along various layers internal in the plywood. Applied it to the damp seam, let it flow through the channels, it cured & sealed, with some expansion out of the seam.
PL construction adhesive also absorbs moisture to cure. I've used it to apply fillets for sealing. Bonds, seals, cures hard not flexible.
Video games are giving kids unrealistic expectations on how many swords they can carry.
.
... but don't harm the red dragon that frequents the area from time to time. He and I have an agreement.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by EGAZ » Mon Aug 22, 2016 6:06 pm

X2 on Gorilla glue! Love this stuff for wood.

At this point, (being assembled) I would go for RTV silcone. Bead up each seam, run a finger over it to push it it the corners.

Tip: wet your fingers and it wont stick as bad.
2nd time better than the first. And the first was pretty Freakin' Great!
I am Camp2. - A solo camp - Stop by and say Hey!, 8) Gotta beer?

If you are another Solo Burner & very 'Radically Self Reliant' - Maybe we can 'Do What We Do!' :P

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Canoe » Mon Aug 22, 2016 6:13 pm

Depends on what the box is already treated with...
Video games are giving kids unrealistic expectations on how many swords they can carry.
.
... but don't harm the red dragon that frequents the area from time to time. He and I have an agreement.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Mon Aug 22, 2016 6:18 pm

Depending on what's already on there, appliance spray epoxy paint from wallyworld, or boat paint.

Oh, and it's going to be a little humid this year, so expect about 20 degrees cooling affect instead of 30. 8)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Pootzen » Mon Aug 22, 2016 6:27 pm

Thank you for the advice! I will pick up some Gorilla Glue and RTV Adhesive instead. I treated it with a couple cans of the Rustoleum epoxy, but it's not complete coverage.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Mon Aug 22, 2016 6:31 pm

Then I would go heavier with the epoxy, as those other things may not bond to what you already put on there.

Heavy enough so that its more of a liner than a paint job.
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