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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rideincircles
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by rideincircles » Fri Jul 10, 2015 4:58 pm

What was the recommended pump for the unicooler? Was it this $60 one?

http://www.siliconsolar.com/aquajet-pro ... 03257.html

All the old links are dead ends and this thread is massive (I am reading it as much as possible).

I assume the bucket cooler pumps are too small, I do have 2 of them now if that would work. I don't plan on any solar set up at the moment.

Aside from that, my endless breeze should arrive today, the Costco interstate deep cycle marine batteries are about $80 and are 67 AH if the calculation was correct, and I was thinking about making mine out of a couple of styrofoam coolers cut, stacked and glued. I would like to be able to chill a homebrew keg or 2 in there if possible.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by LowePro » Fri Jul 10, 2015 5:04 pm

If I could, encourage you not to use styrofoam coolers as you mentioned. They are fragile and horribly moopy when they get banged up. Also not sure how water-tight it would be if you cut and glued them together. Might have better luck with a plastic trash can or storage bin with a tight lid. The swamp cooler itself doesn't need to be insulated. The coolness comes from the evaporative effect of the hot air passing thru the film of water.

Hey squirrel--just splice the wires together with enough wire length so the joint is outside the bucket, not dangling into the bucket.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Danielpops » Fri Jul 10, 2015 5:12 pm

streetartsquirrel wrote:I'm a little nervous when it comes to wiring the 2 together with water being involved. is it safe to splice the pump together with the fan? any tutorials or photos on doing it?

All of my solder points are inside the bucket (fan and pump). I solder'd, then goop'd the solder point, then heat shrank the solder'd goop'd point. That should alleviate any electrohydrophobia
/dp

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by streetartsquirrel » Fri Jul 10, 2015 5:13 pm

I bought this pump

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Total-Pond-1 ... /202017048

Very similar to this one, it has the plug connected directly to the pump so i'm not sure where i would cut the pump power cable

http://ep.yimg.com/ay/attictrunk/founta ... 3500-5.gif

i know i can connect/splice an old phone charger to the fan, but i was hoping to have one power cable coming out of the bucket.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by LowePro » Fri Jul 10, 2015 5:21 pm

Hey squirrely,
that's the wrong pump! Are you running your swampy off a battery or directly from a generator? If you're running off a battery, you need a 12Volt pump. It would just have 2 wires and it's very straightforward to splice them with your 12V fan.

The fan you posted is a 12V fan. But that pump is a plug-in AC 120V. (Apologies if that was your intent but the majority of this thread is devoted to the 12V battery design. Splicing 120V AC is more dangerous and beyond my level of online-advice-giving; Good luck

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by streetartsquirrel » Fri Jul 10, 2015 5:26 pm

asr9754 wrote:Hey squirrely,
that's the wrong pump! Are you running your swampy off a battery or directly from a generator? If you're running off a battery, you need a 12Volt pump. It would just have 2 wires and it's very straightforward to splice them with your fan.

That pump is a plug-in AC 120V. Apologies if that was your intent, but the majority of this thread is devoted to the 12V battery design. Splicing 120V AC is more dangerous and beyond my level of online-advice-giving! Good luck.

Ahh. That explains the confusion. I will be bringing a generator with me.

Does the pump I have give me any advantages over a 12 volt pump?

Certainly sounds like the 12V give me the advantage of easily splicing and will use less watts. My pump uses 7w

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by LowePro » Fri Jul 10, 2015 5:32 pm

I have not set up a 120V AC swamp cooler so I shouldn't try to answer that. Amateur here.
The 12V DC battery-based system is easy to splice, efficient, and runs pretty silently compared to a generator running. If you can bring a 12V deep cycle battery, that would be ideal. If needed you could recharge the battery w/ your generator using the proper 12Vcharging cables/devices. Not knowing the specifics of your generator, that is.
As it is now, your fan and your pump are mostly incompatible so you can't splice them together in any way that would be worth the trouble of just returning and getting a new one.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by streetartsquirrel » Fri Jul 10, 2015 5:33 pm

asr9754 wrote:I have not set up a 120V AC swamp cooler so I shouldn't try to answer that. Amateur here.
The 12V DC battery-based system is easy to splice, efficient, and runs pretty silently compared to a generator running. If you can bring a 12V deep cycle battery, that would be ideal. If needed you could recharge the battery w/ your generator using the proper 12Vcharging cables/devices. Not knowing the specifics of your generator, that is.
As it is now, your fan and your pump are mostly incompatible so you can't splice them together in any way that would be worth the trouble of just returning and getting a new one.

Thanks. I'm bringing a Goal Zero 150w generator with a 100w solar panel. That should plug directly in.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Fri Jul 10, 2015 6:03 pm

Streetsquirrel... that fan isn't nearly big enough to cool that space!!!
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Fri Jul 10, 2015 6:09 pm

riingincircles... the pumps for the bucket cooler will work fine on the unicooler as long as you don't make it to tall.

The further it has to lift the water, the less water it can lift.

That battery is NOT what I've heard you can get at Costco for $80.

It should be 105AH, but I don't have a Costco card.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Popeye » Fri Jul 10, 2015 6:16 pm

streetartsquirrel wrote:
asr9754 wrote: Thanks. I'm bringing a Goal Zero 150w generator with a 100w solar panel. That should plug directly in.
The Goal Zero is not what most people think of when you say "generator" even though it is advertised as one. It looks to be a battery and an inverter in one package and they sell you a small solar panel to recharge it.
I am not sure which model you intend to purchase but I doubt the solar panel is large enough to keep the battery charged. There are conversion losses when changing the DC to AC so if you have already purchased the GoalZero you will want to stick to DC.
You might do better to buy a deep cycle battery and 12V DC pump and fan and keep closer to Figjam's design. Certainly save some $.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Fri Jul 10, 2015 6:29 pm

Yeah, the GoalZero looks pretty, but the specs don't show that it is capable of a decent run time.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by unjonharley » Fri Jul 10, 2015 7:22 pm

FIGJAM wrote:Yeah, the GoalZero looks pretty, but the specs don't show that it is capable of a decent run time.
My bucket cooler, built to Figjams spec's worked very well on the playa last year..
Right now the temp has been running 102-106.. Put the cooler feeding into my 12X16 bedroom.. keeps me cool..If it works.. Why mess with the design??
I'm the contraptioneer your mother warned you about.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by chuckularone » Sat Jul 11, 2015 5:14 am

unjonharley wrote: Why mess with the design??
Human nature?
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Canoe » Sat Jul 11, 2015 8:02 am

FIGJAM wrote:riingincircles... the pumps for the bucket cooler will work fine on the unicooler as long as you don't make it to tall. The further it has to lift the water, the less water it can lift.
That battery is NOT what I've heard you can get at Costco for $80.
It should be 105AH, but I don't have a Costco card.
Costoco Kirkland brand provides the 105 Ah. Some stores have a 120 Ah.
Many use it on the playa.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Sat Jul 11, 2015 9:10 am

I may have found the perfect container for the unicoolers, but it's a treasure hunt.

You'll have to find some place or somebody that is recycling a travel trailer.

The fresh water tank in a lot of them is 10"s deep x 2' wide x up to 6' long.

You can cut one end off to around 30"s and have a waterproof box that has no taper.

My camera battery is recharging, so pics later!!! 8)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by streetartsquirrel » Sat Jul 11, 2015 10:01 am

FIGJAM wrote:Streetsquirrel... that fan isn't nearly big enough to cool that space!!!
what size fan would you recommend? while it is a 6 person coleman weathermaster (~100sq ft) it will just be me and my SO in it.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by streetartsquirrel » Sat Jul 11, 2015 10:08 am

FIGJAM wrote:Yeah, the GoalZero looks pretty, but the specs don't show that it is capable of a decent run time.
The 150 has ~150w. THey sell 7-30w solar panels. I bought a 100w that will be compatible.

If the pump runs at ~10w shouldnt i be able to keep it running at least 8 hrs a day without any problem?

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Sat Jul 11, 2015 10:46 am

This fan.

http://www.amazon.com/Delta-Electronics ... B004XJLOG8

I'm no expert on solar, but the charge rate is never as good as they say it is due to changing conditions.

If it says 100 watts, you may get that at high noon with perfect exposure and no dust on the panel.

This scenario won't happen on the playa.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by rideincircles » Sat Jul 11, 2015 10:53 am

When I checked at costco, I just saw some Interstate Marine batteries that seemed geared for starting/maintaining a boat. It was the 27m model listed here. Not sure if other places have something different, I will check another costco.


http://www.interstatebatteries.com/m/ca ... e/starting

The endless breeze fan gets here monday, so it looks like today will be cleaning house stuff this weekend. I may use an igloo ice cube cooler for the base and add a top to the lid if that seems to work. Someone was throwing away one the other day and it makes for an easy 15 gallon reservoir. Styrofoam is definitely too moopy on second thought. I guess if a box was built around it, it could work, but will focus on something better.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by streetartsquirrel » Sat Jul 11, 2015 11:44 am

FIGJAM wrote:This fan.

http://www.amazon.com/Delta-Electronics ... B004XJLOG8

I'm no expert on solar, but the charge rate is never as good as they say it is due to changing conditions.

If it says 100 watts, you may get that at high noon with perfect exposure and no dust on the panel.

This scenario won't happen on the playa.

Thanks figjam, Ordered the fan. am going to see if i can pickup a 12v dc pump at harbor freight today.

once i get it all together, i'll run some tests on my goal zero to see how it performs.

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Sat Jul 11, 2015 4:51 pm

FIGJAM wrote:I may have found the perfect container for the unicoolers, but it's a treasure hunt.

You'll have to find some place or somebody that is recycling a travel trailer.

The fresh water tank in a lot of them is 10"s deep x 2' wide x up to 6' long.

You can cut one end off to around 30"s and have a waterproof box that has no taper.

My camera battery is recharging, so pics later!!! 8)
Image

Image
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by unjonharley » Sat Jul 11, 2015 5:45 pm

Damn, I have one of those tanks in my back yard..
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by LowePro » Mon Jul 13, 2015 1:32 pm

Broke out the bucket cooler for a test run yesterday. Continually impressed how well it's held up after 2 long burns and not much TLC.

3 year-old ebay pump ($5) still going strong. Ordered a backup just in case. Had to re-do the connection between the PVC tube and the bucket lid--the old adhesive was getting brittle and crackly. Also a few of the wire connections had to be re-spliced due to rust. The blue pad seems to shed particles, so I shook it out really well over a trash can, (Don't want to bring all those loose blue fluff balls to the playa). Also I noticed some blue fluff inside the drip line, blocking some of the holes...undid the drip line and sprayed it out to clear the old lint.
Back up and running now!

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by The CO » Mon Jul 13, 2015 2:00 pm

I use a 2.5 gallon version of the classic FigJam cooler at my shop desk. keeps my little corner much more pleasant.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by ShreddinPB » Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:36 am

I got this guy to build mine.. I asked the seller if the walls were vertical and he said they were.. I havnt used my bubble level on them yet.. but they look just slightly non verticle.. but they are close.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/221570940416

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Thu Jul 16, 2015 10:17 am

At 27"s tall you will need to keep the cutouts as close to the top as possible to maintain a good sized water reservoir.

Cut the lip off the side where your fan will be, so that it can fit flush to the wall.

Looks good. 8)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by ShreddinPB » Thu Jul 16, 2015 12:49 pm

FIGJAM wrote:At 27"s tall you will need to keep the cutouts as close to the top as possible to maintain a good sized water reservoir.

Cut the lip off the side where your fan will be, so that it can fit flush to the wall.

Looks good. 8)
I was still planning on doing a 4 sided one with the fan in the top like my 3D mockup.. is that a bad idea?

was going to use one of these on each side
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... gnorebbr=1

and I ordered this, 1700 cfm at 2.8ah
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00390 ... ge_o00_s00

I also ordered this as a pump, I read that bilge pumps are not meant to run for long periods of time.. and this it only 0.5ah for 550L/hour (145.295 gph) which is right in the middle of where you thought I should be at GPH. I figure if it doesnt flow enough, at $16 I can get a second one and have them each pump 2 sides.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/400666077637?_t ... EBIDX%3AIT

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by ShreddinPB » Thu Jul 16, 2015 12:58 pm

since its 16.5" wide, maybe I go with these, wider and shorter giving me more reservoir space..
I loose a little surface area, but gain a lot more reservoir.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... -_-Product

or a little more height to keep the surface area
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... -_-Product

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Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Thu Jul 16, 2015 1:53 pm

With that much fan you'll need all the surface area you can get!!!

I don't know what your water consumption will be like.

My unicooler uses about 3/4 of a gallon per hour with 250 cfm.

Yours won't use 7x that, but it will be considerable.

Best to test than to come up short. 8)
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