cooling your tent or van

Swamp Coolers, Cooler Management, Dry Ice, Misting Systems, and just plain how to beat the heat.
Post Reply
User avatar
reggie13
Posts: 32
Joined: Wed May 20, 2015 5:22 am
Burning Since: 2015
Camp Name: Gender Blender

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by reggie13 » Mon Jul 20, 2015 4:34 pm

kheldar wrote:What fan are folks using for the bucket cooler these days? The most commonly linked one here from amazon is no longer in stock, and doesn't seem to be coming back anytime soon :(

While I'm asking questions like a noob, is there a preferred submersible pump that burners like? Seeing lots of 12V sub pumps out there. This will be my first time splicing wires as well, so any advice there would be huge.

Thanks in advance all!
this is the one i got, that Figjam suggested, and it works...

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Handy-Mini-DC-1 ... 3f4f39bb21

lots of video to see how to splice wires on youtube, depends on what tools you have....soldering, splice connectors, twist with wire nuts method....

User avatar
reggie13
Posts: 32
Joined: Wed May 20, 2015 5:22 am
Burning Since: 2015
Camp Name: Gender Blender

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by reggie13 » Mon Jul 20, 2015 4:36 pm

Figjam,

got the cooler operational (unable to test temp due to being in the muggy swamps of Louisiana right now) but want to verify....

5 gal bucket cooler INSIDE....or OUTSIDE......for a 6 foot stretch yurt?

and 2nd, do i need an "outgoing hot air vent hole" on opposing wall from cooler?

thanks for all the help!

Reggie

LowePro
Posts: 653
Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2012 2:58 pm

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by LowePro » Mon Jul 20, 2015 4:47 pm

Circlerider, keep your wire connections out of the standing water or sufficiently waterproof the splices. The water will not remain pure, even if you were to start w/ distilled it gets dust particles immediately and will be conductive. If your only reason for keeping the cooler inside is for the on/off switch, you could just wire a switch into some extra long wire and run that wire thru the duct-hole in your yurt, to keep the on/off switch indoors but the cooler outdoors. Works for me. My on/off switch is inside but the swampie is outside.

User avatar
FIGJAM
Posts: 10232
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2010 10:39 am
Location: apache junction az.

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Mon Jul 20, 2015 5:59 pm

reggie13 wrote:Figjam,

got the cooler operational (unable to test temp due to being in the muggy swamps of Louisiana right now) but want to verify....

5 gal bucket cooler INSIDE....or OUTSIDE......for a 6 foot stretch yurt?

and 2nd, do i need an "outgoing hot air vent hole" on opposing wall from cooler?

thanks for all the help!

Reggie
The bucket cooler has to be outside, with the air ducted into the space being cooled.

A vent on the opposite side of the space is vital!!!

If the air can't get out..............it can't get in!!!!!!! 8)
"Don't buy ur Burn...........Build ur Burn!"

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

Fuck Im Good Just Ask Me

mattcamp
Posts: 68
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2014 4:40 am
Burning Since: 2012
Camp Name: Discordia

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by mattcamp » Tue Jul 21, 2015 2:11 am

So on a related note then, Unicooler... better inside or outside a yurt?

I saw in viewtopic.php?f=280&t=33842&start=2340#p974540 that Jyman had his on the outside, but he also said it didn't really work that well (although that might have been humidity related)

User avatar
FIGJAM
Posts: 10232
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2010 10:39 am
Location: apache junction az.

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Tue Jul 21, 2015 8:05 am

Jymans isn't a unicooler, it's a box cooler.

In the first picture, you can see that it is not level due to the angle of the container that he used.

I didn't notice that the fist time!!! :shock:

This can create an uneven distribution of the water on the pads.

Maybe even dry areas of pad on the high side.

That cooler should have been able to cool at least 20 degrees even with the higher humidity.

If it was sitting flat, it would need something to fill the taper that the container has.
"Don't buy ur Burn...........Build ur Burn!"

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

Fuck Im Good Just Ask Me

mattcamp
Posts: 68
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2014 4:40 am
Burning Since: 2012
Camp Name: Discordia

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by mattcamp » Tue Jul 21, 2015 9:03 am

Yep,

I'm planning on doing Unicoolers though as I don't have the time to build box coolers... (and can't find any of the recommended fans for the bucket coolers in stock anywhere!)

I've been wondering about the tilt thing when looking at people building Unicoolers out of those Genuine Joe trash bins which appear to be tapered slightly... I'm assuming it's not too much of an issue if you then tilt the whole cooler correctly so that the pad inside is perfectly vertical.

Still... better inside or outside the yurt?

User avatar
FIGJAM
Posts: 10232
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2010 10:39 am
Location: apache junction az.

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Tue Jul 21, 2015 9:40 am

Unicooler goes inside.

I've said it before that if you have a tapered container, it is fairly easy to fill the taper with foam rubber to act as a seal.

Before amazon, this is were you can get the fans!!! 8)

http://www.frozencpu.com/products/8556/ ... 6c435s1108

And a quick chart to find alternatives................

http://www.frozencpu.com/cat/l2/g36/c43 ... y_CFM.html
"Don't buy ur Burn...........Build ur Burn!"

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

Fuck Im Good Just Ask Me

User avatar
SourPatch
Posts: 53
Joined: Mon Oct 28, 2013 10:36 am
Burning Since: 2009
Location: Orange County, CA

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by SourPatch » Tue Jul 21, 2015 10:20 am

mattcamp wrote:... I've been wondering about the tilt thing when looking at people building Unicoolers out of those Genuine Joe trash bins which appear to be tapered slightly... I'm assuming it's not too much of an issue if you then tilt the whole cooler correctly so that the pad inside is perfectly vertical.
Still... better inside or outside the yurt?
I used the Genuine Joe trash bin. Although the sides are tapered, the pad inside is vertical. Only way for the pad to be tilted would be to tilt the bottom of the trash can (uneven surface, etc.).

All of these evaporative coolers (bucket, uni, box) must have an intake of dry air to work properly. You can put the cooler inside, as long as the air intake draws from outside. Where you put your cooler may affect the efficiency of it, though. You want cool wind blowing at you.

Maybe understanding the principle of evap coolers would help: dry air passes through the wet pads, water gets evaporated, and as a consequence the output air gets colder and more humid than the intake air.
Overkill or go home.

mattcamp
Posts: 68
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2014 4:40 am
Burning Since: 2012
Camp Name: Discordia

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by mattcamp » Tue Jul 21, 2015 10:24 am

SourPatch wrote:Maybe understanding the principle of evap coolers would help: dry air passes through the wet pads, water gets evaporated, and as a consequence the output air gets colder and more humid than the intake air.
I understand the principles, however there have been several different versions posted in this megathread though, some with the cooler inside and some outside (unicooler or box coolers only - obviously the bucket coolers have to go outside).

I just wanted to know if anyone had any strong feelings about which way is better for the Uni/Box coolers since it seems you can actually do them either way.

Thanks for the info about the Genuine Joe!

User avatar
SourPatch
Posts: 53
Joined: Mon Oct 28, 2013 10:36 am
Burning Since: 2009
Location: Orange County, CA

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by SourPatch » Tue Jul 21, 2015 10:40 am

Let me correct my previous post. My configuration allows me to have the pad vertical. The original unicooler WOULD have tilted pads if nothing is done to correct that since they are attached against the walls of the trash can. Sorry about that.
Overkill or go home.

amitrus
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2014 9:28 pm
Burning Since: 2014

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by amitrus » Wed Jul 22, 2015 11:18 pm

A question about fans for any electrical engineering wizards out there:

I'm making several bucket coolers that will be powered using 12v DC converters. Right now, I'm using the Sanyo Denki SAN Ace 3.0 Amp 12 Volt 224 CFM fan, since the Delta fans Figjam recommends are sold out.

My problem is, when I connect this Sanyo fan in parallel to the 12v water pump, the pump starts sputtering. It can't push water up into the ring over the pad.

Here's the really weird thing: I tried switching out the Sanyo Denki fan for other high-CFM fans, including a 252CFM 12V 3.9A Delta fan. The pump runs FINE when this 3.9A Delta fan is connected! Even though that fan draws more amps (or so it says on its sticker)!

I'm using this 12V 5A adapter, which should be more than enough for the sum of the amperage of either fan + the pump.

Any idea what gives here?? I really would like to use those Sanyo fans because they are cheap and available. But I don't want to package each bucket cooler with two DC converters (one for the fan, and one for the pump).

User avatar
JohnEBGud
Posts: 87
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 2:46 pm
Burning Since: 2014
Camp Name: Play-a Piano
Location: Arizona
Contact:

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by JohnEBGud » Thu Jul 23, 2015 10:05 am

Figjam's recommended Delta AFB1212SHE-CF00 (DC Fan Axial Ball Bearing 12V 6V to 13.8V 190.48CFM 55.5dB (120 X 120 X 38mm) ) is available here and in stock
http://www.onlinecomponents.com/delta-p ... p=44522398
To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour.
--Wm. Blake

User avatar
The CO
Posts: 1670
Joined: Wed Sep 21, 2005 10:56 am
Burning Since: 1996
Camp Name: M*A*S*H 4207th/404://Village Not Found
Location: I-CORPS, M*A*S*H HQ, Van Nuts, CA

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by The CO » Thu Jul 23, 2015 3:27 pm

**Update**
The CO wrote:After using crappy pads for a while, I just began making a new FCooler using DuraCool pads.

Problem: dry, the pad tube fits wonderfully well.
But when it gets wet, the pad compresses and doesn't reach the top of the bucket, preventing the seal needed.

Is this a new issue? Anyone else?
asr9754 wrote:Co, I had the same issue with the pad slouching when wet. The pad seems to have a grain to it and it likes to compress in one direction more than the other. I solved it by wrapping the pad in a cylinder of small chicken wire. It adds structure and stability, keeps the pad upright.
The 'grain' was very much the issue. I cut a new pad on the other axis, and have not had the compression issue or needed chickenwire.

Now this weekend I'm making like 6 of these for camp mates at M*A*S*H. Designation FC-15. Figjam, I think I owe you a couple royalty payments. Come to M*A*S*H 4207th this year at 245 Carnie to collect.
M*A*S*H 4207th: An army of fun.
I don't care what the borg says: feather-wearers will NOT be served in Rosie's Bar.
When I ask how many burns, I mean at BRC.

User avatar
Canoe
Posts: 3737
Joined: Sun Jul 31, 2011 8:01 pm

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Canoe » Thu Jul 23, 2015 5:42 pm

amitrus wrote:A question about fans for any electrical engineering wizards out there:
... Sanyo Denki SAN Ace 3.0 Amp 12 Volt
... the pump
... 252CFM 12V 3.9A Delta fan
... this 12V 5A adapter
... which should be more than enough for the sum of the amperage of either fan + the pump. ...
With 5A available from the adapter and fans drawing 3.0A or 3.9A, and a 4.2W pump that should be drawing 0.35A from 12 VDC, you should be good. So we need to know some more about what's going on. I don't know how much you know, so I need to know that the pump and fan are actually wired in parallel, not in series by mistake. If they are confirmed in parallel (post a photo if you're not completely sure), then I need you to measure the voltage of the 12 VDC adapter plugged in:
  • with nothing connected to it,
  • only the pump connected and running,
  • only the 3.0A fan connected and running,
  • only the 3.9A fan connected and running
  • the pump and 3.0A fan connected and running, and finally,
  • the pump and 3.9A fan connected and running.
Have fun!
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.

User avatar
barasingha
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jul 14, 2015 10:48 pm
Burning Since: 2015
Camp Name: WIP
Location: San Francisco / Paris

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by barasingha » Sat Jul 25, 2015 3:26 am

FIGJAM wrote:
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)
Good morning everyone,

Big thanks to you FIGJAM for the evap cooler designs...

First burn for me, and going all in with H12 hexayurt + unicooler; I'm not handy enough to build a box as described in the original design, and I am kind of worried that the trash can unicooler won't be air tight by the wall of my yurt (b/c of the lip / tapered side...). So was happy to see your post for the "perfect" container.

I found this on ebay...
http://www.ebay.com/itm/21-Gallon-RV-Fr ... f6&vxp=mtr

Pb, it's $20 more that the Genuine Joe...
So are the tapered side / lip an issue in a hexayurt ? Has anyone found something else w/out tapered sides ?

Cheers,

Barasingha

mattcamp
Posts: 68
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2014 4:40 am
Burning Since: 2012
Camp Name: Discordia

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by mattcamp » Sat Jul 25, 2015 3:37 am

With the Unicooler (specifically the one built from a plywood box) is the EB fan only attached to the box using silicon sealant?

Any particular brand or type that I should use to ensure it's a strong enough hold?

User avatar
FIGJAM
Posts: 10232
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2010 10:39 am
Location: apache junction az.

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Sat Jul 25, 2015 7:16 am

100% clear silicone.

I cut a circle for the fan which meant I could put a big dob of silicone on each corner, then silicone all around the edge to seal.

I built a box cooler for the "More Carrot" veggie yurt and they a had rigid bike trailer to haul it to their camp.

All the bumping caused the fan to come loose.

This has never happened to any other cooler.

I've started adding 2 little L brackets under the fan as added support!!! 8)
"Don't buy ur Burn...........Build ur Burn!"

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

Fuck Im Good Just Ask Me

User avatar
Wigwam
Posts: 143
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2014 10:54 pm
Burning Since: 2011
Camp Name: The Wanderers
Location: Los Angeles

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by Wigwam » Sun Jul 26, 2015 9:57 am

Again, huge thanks to Figjam!! Just completed the original design fan. I used the solar water pump and although the fan showed as sold out, got this one for a couple of dollars extra.

http://www.frozencpu.com/products/8547/ ... 6c435s1108

Everything works like a charm. I used silicone on the duct work as well and may think about reenforcing it too!!

I use the Springbar canvas tent, so I want to make sure to vent and let the interior dry out before storing it.
The truth is more important than the facts.
I'm not an actor, but I've played one on TV.

sleepnosleep
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Jul 17, 2015 3:26 pm
Burning Since: 2014
Camp Name: ABCs

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by sleepnosleep » Mon Jul 27, 2015 10:36 am

So... Decided I'm going to do a box cooler for the lotus belle. A few questions...

1) I'm going to go the wood/roofing approach. Can I just use 1/2 plywood? Or is there a preferred wood?

2) what are people's thoughts on the best box cooler pump these days? I'm seeing a lot of 12v bilge pump options for less than $40 but don't want something that's going to crap out on me.

3) I'd like to go the marine battery + solar panel route... Any fingers in the right direction in terms of learning more about this?

Thanks!

User avatar
FIGJAM
Posts: 10232
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2010 10:39 am
Location: apache junction az.

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Mon Jul 27, 2015 12:31 pm

I used the cheapest 1/2" plywood I could buy.

You could use marine plywood.

Once you get it together and coated with the roof coating, get a can of epoxy spray paint, and coat the inside heavily.

I had some swelling one year that created a small leak, but a tube of Goop smeared on the seams saved me.

Bring some "just in case", but you probably won't need it.

Get a few of these.

One should be enough, but they're cheap and it's good to have a back up. 8)

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

That one ships from china.

If you need one quicker...........

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Ultra-quiet-DC1 ... 1207478304
"Don't buy ur Burn...........Build ur Burn!"

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

Fuck Im Good Just Ask Me

sleepnosleep
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Jul 17, 2015 3:26 pm
Burning Since: 2014
Camp Name: ABCs

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by sleepnosleep » Mon Jul 27, 2015 8:54 pm

Thanks again for the quick response! To be clear, the box cooler goes 'outside', correct? If so, since the walls of my tent are curved, could I run ducting from the endless breeze into a tent window (sealed around)?

User avatar
FIGJAM
Posts: 10232
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2010 10:39 am
Location: apache junction az.

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Mon Jul 27, 2015 9:04 pm

Yes.
"Don't buy ur Burn...........Build ur Burn!"

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

Fuck Im Good Just Ask Me

pug
Posts: 21
Joined: Sun Mar 16, 2014 9:44 pm
Burning Since: 2014
Camp Name: Emerge-n-See InTentsIV Care Unit

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by pug » Wed Jul 29, 2015 2:16 pm

Can't seem to find an existing post asking this (but I bet it's around)...

Does the pad really have to go all the way to the bottom of the bucket? Doesn't it just have to cover the holes like shown? Seems like this should work, as it's just the air coming in the holes and going through the pad that counts. Ergo just put pad over the holes.

I suppose there could be a bit of wicking of water up from the bucket if it goes all the way down, but that seems pretty unnecessary given one's got a pump soaking that thing all the time.

Image

I'm about to make a second cooler, and the pad is hard to get. I'm wondering if I can't just cut the existing pad in half, and set it up as shown on the two coolers.

Thoughts?

LowePro
Posts: 653
Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2012 2:58 pm

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by LowePro » Wed Jul 29, 2015 2:25 pm

Pugsly,
yes that would work as long as you have something to hold the pad up, but if you plan to run the cooler for 2 or 3 or 4 hours, the water gets evaporated and the water level drops significantly. If the water level drops below the level of your reduced blue-pad, then the cooling effect is lost. The incoming air would just find the path of least resistance--down and under instead of thru the blue pad.
While I'm napping or recovering in my structure, the bucket frequently gets down to just 2 to 3 inches of water. Not sure how much blue pad it would save to trim that much off. Then with the additional time and expense of finding something to perch the blue pad partially up in the bucket....it doesn't seem worth it. Got my pad on that big rainforest website. Not too expensive and ships pretty quick. Search Duracool Pad.

pug
Posts: 21
Joined: Sun Mar 16, 2014 9:44 pm
Burning Since: 2014
Camp Name: Emerge-n-See InTentsIV Care Unit

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by pug » Wed Jul 29, 2015 2:31 pm

asr9754 wrote:Pugsly,
If the water level drops below the level of your reduced blue-pad, then the cooling effect is lost. The incoming air would just find the path of least resistance--down and under instead of thru the blue pad.
Not if you seal it to the sides of the bucket with (for example) a compression ring. As you mention about air leaks, it's all about just making the air go through the wet mesh.

User avatar
FIGJAM
Posts: 10232
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2010 10:39 am
Location: apache junction az.

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Wed Jul 29, 2015 3:13 pm

I see your pad shifting or pressing against the holes in the bucket and creating a leaking problem.

Part of having the pad go clear to the bottom is that it centers the pad so that the holes are 1/4" away from the pad to prevent leaks.

Image
"Don't buy ur Burn...........Build ur Burn!"

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

Fuck Im Good Just Ask Me

pug
Posts: 21
Joined: Sun Mar 16, 2014 9:44 pm
Burning Since: 2014
Camp Name: Emerge-n-See InTentsIV Care Unit

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by pug » Wed Jul 29, 2015 3:33 pm

FIGJAM wrote:I see your pad shifting or pressing against the holes in the bucket and creating a leaking problem.
Part of having the pad go clear to the bottom is that it centers the pad so that the holes are 1/4" away from the pad to prevent leaks.
So if I could keep it clear of the holes with some kind of crafty spacers...

Image

I'll probably just give it a shot. I had a successful run with my existing cooler last year so I've got a good example of what works (to know if what I do doesn't work).

User avatar
FIGJAM
Posts: 10232
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2010 10:39 am
Location: apache junction az.

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by FIGJAM » Wed Jul 29, 2015 3:42 pm

It will work, but something I've noticed is that the lower the water level, the more wet pad is exposed, the better it works.

When I first fill my bucket for the day, I have about the same exposed pad as your diagram and it works fine.

As the water evaporates, it gets even better. 8)
"Don't buy ur Burn...........Build ur Burn!"

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

Fuck Im Good Just Ask Me

pug
Posts: 21
Joined: Sun Mar 16, 2014 9:44 pm
Burning Since: 2014
Camp Name: Emerge-n-See InTentsIV Care Unit

Re: cooling your tent or van

Post by pug » Wed Jul 29, 2015 3:49 pm

FIGJAM wrote:It will work, but something I've noticed is that the lower the water level, the more wet pad is exposed, the better it works.

When I first fill my bucket for the day, I have about the same exposed pad as your diagram and it works fine.

As the water evaporates, it gets even better. 8)
Makes sense! More wet surface area for the air to move through.

Post Reply

Return to “Keeping Cool”