swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Swamp Coolers, Cooler Management, Dry Ice, Misting Systems, and just plain how to beat the heat.
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sharke
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swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby sharke » Tue Sep 16, 2014 6:58 pm

On the playa I found that my swamp cooler blew cold air, so it was nice when it was directly on the skin, but it wasn't enough to cool my 10'x10x7' Kodiak tent. Does anyone have experience with or thoughts on how much it might help to direct the cooler air into a smaller tent (say 7'x5'x3') within the larger tent?

Just based on the math this would mean only 95 cubic feet needs to be cooled instead of 700, but I am wondering how it well it will work in practice. Assuming there is some shade over the larger tent, would the result be cool enough for afternoon naps? Or merely allow sleeping in until 9 or 10?

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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby spacetime » Fri Sep 19, 2014 8:44 am

A tent within a tent?

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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby Ano » Fri Sep 19, 2014 8:49 am

I don't know if this will help, but I managed to cool down a Kodiak tent of the same size with a 190cfm fan in the swamp cooler. It wasn't "cold" inside, but it was comfy enough for two people to sleep through the afternoon and into the evening.

I'd imagine that the tent-inside-a-tent, or tent-tent, would work fine, as long as the sleeping tent is mostly sealed and allows for a little bit of air to flow through it so that the air can recycle every few minutes. I have no direct experience, though.

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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby Elderberry » Fri Sep 19, 2014 8:53 am

A tent setup under a shade structure will be cooler than a tent setup in the open. So, the swamp cooler might give you some extra time in the morning to sleep, But I'm guessing that it won't be cool enough for afternoon naps.
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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby sharke » Fri Sep 19, 2014 6:45 pm

Thanks for the responses everyone. It sounds like the tent within a tent may be worth a try, though I wonder if the outer tent will still become hot and humid - I've been hesitant to open the windows on the outer tent because of dust concerns.

Ano, the fan on my bucket cooler is also rated for 190cfm (it's one that figjam recommended). I'm impressed that you were able to sleep in your tent in the daytime. Did you have external shade over the tent? And did you keep any of the tent windows open to let the humid air escape?

Edit: I found Ano's post here: https://eplaya.burningman.org/viewtopic ... 1#p1041411
A 10x10 Kodiak tent with no shade was completely comfortable to sleep in with a 190cfm fan blowing from the bucket and a few windows open for ducting (slight billowing of the tent) ALL DAY. I went to bed at 1pm once, and woke up around 11pm. Cooler had turned off automatically at 6 and the cool evening air kept me asleep for the rest of it. A small coleman tent with shade over it was freezing cold from noon to six when a friend napped in it.


That' certainly encouraging! Hmm I wonder what I was doing wrong. At one point I noticed the pump had stopped and the filter had dried out, but the air from the fan was still cool.

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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby sharke » Fri Sep 19, 2014 7:07 pm

spacetime wrote:A tent within a tent?


Indeed. It's either that or A taco, within a taco, within a Taco Bell within YOUR MIND! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gwqYRCgE8mo

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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby Ano » Fri Sep 19, 2014 7:10 pm

I left a window by my bed open, and one of the tiny windows up top open. The only shade my tent had was from being next to a carport, and by 8am the sun would be hitting the tent. The Kodiak tent would billow after a minute or so of running the cooler. I had a long piece of ducting that would blow directly on to my air mattress, keeping a windy cool breeze over me. Other than that... that's about it. I do live in Sacramento in a shitty tiny little apartment, and it's generally pretty warm in here, so I'm also used to sleeping in hot rooms. I had the added advantage of exhaustion on my 1pm-11pm day, as well. I had somewhere between three and four gallons in the cooler, with a little bit of ice as well.

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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby BBadger » Sat Sep 20, 2014 1:40 am

I'd say that the shade + airflow is more important than the swamp cooler if you can manage it. Concentrate on that aspect of your shelter before the swamp cooler, because the dry air allows the shade to remain relatively cool. Swamp coolers also require airflow to exhaust that heat-laden air, so design accordingly.
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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby FIGJAM » Sat Sep 20, 2014 8:37 am

With a 2 tent system, I would suggest leaving the outer tent as open as possible (doors, windows, mesh) so that the outer tent is acting basically as a shade structure. 8)
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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby oscillator » Sat Sep 20, 2014 10:38 am

Used a similar setup this year - Kodiak, Figjam 5 gal swamper, under a 8' H x 10'W x 20' L shade. Here is my $0.02...

A little disappointed w/ cooler performance, I think due to the water pump not really pumping. Pumps died 1/2 thru the event. This was a solar fountain pump, will try a CPU cooling pump next.

I've realized that the system does need to be balanced - proper airflow on input and output, as well as balanced amount of water flow. I think I had 2 of 3 correct, just need to find a water pump that puts out. 190 CFM fan, 20 watt solar. Also, solar charging wasn't quite dialed in & I ran the 15ah battery down several times.

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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby Captain Goddammit » Sat Sep 20, 2014 11:08 am

FIGJAM wrote:With a 2 tent system, I would suggest leaving the outer tent as open as possible (doors, windows, mesh) so that the outer tent is acting basically as a shade structure. 8)


I agree with FIGJAM'S thinking; if you put up a tent and close it up out in the sun, it's gonna heat up. Putting a second tent inside it will be just as hot.
Putting shade over a tent to block the sun but not trap heat ought to work better.
The tent-in-a-tent plan probably has merit for dust control though.
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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby FIGJAM » Sat Sep 20, 2014 1:00 pm

oscillator wrote:Used a similar setup this year - Kodiak, Figjam 5 gal swamper, under a 8' H x 10'W x 20' L shade. Here is my $0.02...

A little disappointed w/ cooler performance, I think due to the water pump not really pumping. Pumps died 1/2 thru the event. This was a solar fountain pump, will try a CPU cooling pump next.

I've realized that the system does need to be balanced - proper airflow on input and output, as well as balanced amount of water flow. I think I had 2 of 3 correct, just need to find a water pump that puts out. 190 CFM fan, 20 watt solar. Also, solar charging wasn't quite dialed in & I ran the 15ah battery down several times.

-OSC


The humidity this year probably affected the cooler temp by 10 degrees.

This pump uses little power and does an excellent job.

Buy 2, they're cheap! 8)

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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby sharke » Sat Sep 20, 2014 1:18 pm

oscillator wrote:Used a similar setup this year - Kodiak, Figjam 5 gal swamper, under a 8' H x 10'W x 20' L shade. Here is my $0.02...

A little disappointed w/ cooler performance, I think due to the water pump not really pumping. Pumps died 1/2 thru the event. This was a solar fountain pump, will try a CPU cooling pump next.

I've realized that the system does need to be balanced - proper airflow on input and output, as well as balanced amount of water flow. I think I had 2 of 3 correct, just need to find a water pump that puts out. 190 CFM fan, 20 watt solar. Also, solar charging wasn't quite dialed in & I ran the 15ah battery down several times.

Interesting. I used a 30 watt solar panel to drive both the fan and the pump. I think the pump may have been my weak link. Maybe I will try the pump that figjam just linked to for next year.

One thing about my setup is that I don't use a battery at all - the solar panel drives the system directly. What I really like about this is that it turns itself on automatically in the morning and then spins up faster as the sun gets stronger.

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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby sharke » Sat Sep 20, 2014 1:37 pm

BBadger wrote:I'd say that the shade + airflow is more important than the swamp cooler if you can manage it. Concentrate on that aspect of your shelter before the swamp cooler, because the dry air allows the shade to remain relatively cool. Swamp coolers also require airflow to exhaust that heat-laden air, so design accordingly.

Thanks BBadger, I was starting to think along these lines too. As the Captain mentioned, closed-up tents trap heat, so adding a 2nd tent inside a bigger closed one may not provide a big improvement. I'm wondering if it might be marginally better though for the first few hours of the morning, just because it might keep the cool air from rising as high for a bit.

What I'm thinking of now is using some aluminet shade cloth staked to the ground and with a center pole to extend it over the kodiak tent, with the cloth covering at least the top and entire eastern side. Using the swamp cooler + perhaps the smaller tent inside, I would hope to be able to sleep until 10AM.

Then for afternoon napping I'm thinking of using cots set up in the pocket between the eastern side of the tent and the shade cloth. With that setup, I could also point the swamp cooler at the cots in the afternoons 8) The tent would be useful for storage, nighttime sleeping, and as a refuge in case of dust storms. Do you guys think that sounds like a reasonable plan?

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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby sharpstick » Sun Jun 26, 2016 11:09 pm

I've been using a tent within a tent since '03. Adding a swamp cooler is my next upgrade. I fly in from florida, so weight and volume is a major issue. I used a 3 season full fly 3 person tent that would seal up over my air mattress inside a cheap cabin tent with shade overhead. Worked well for a while. I replaced it with a housewrap cocoon with a spreader bar that was suspended from the cabin tent frame, 1/3 the weight. make sure both sides can be opened up for ventilation and folded up and overlapped on cold nights or dusty days. this setup has a volume of a fraction of the whole tent. (I forget my numbers but they're posted on figjam's swamp cooler thread.)
the main cabin tent itself is a cheap target $99 one. i glued housewrap over the ceiling screen to keep dust out. that crappy old tent is on it's 8th year!! version 2 will have thick white latex roof repair paint sealing all screen panels. already tested on a small storage tent.
i've made a 7 gallon SC, but have yet to use it.

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Re: swamp cooler with tent inside a tent?

Postby Molotov » Mon Jun 27, 2016 8:24 am

A tent within a tent? Sounds like you are nervous about dust and heat.

I checked with a doctor friend of mine about that.

He said "It's simple, the original author is....................................................too tense!"

Ba-dum-dum-tssss!!
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