changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

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changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby eksine » Mon Jul 29, 2013 7:52 pm

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This is my design improvements to FIGJAM’s cooler design. The plastic 4” flange I only saw at Lowes so if you don’t see it at Home Depot go over to Lowe’s. Everything should be self explanatory from the pictures. The best way to cut holes is to use a fine tip permanent marker and use a 2.5” aerosol can to trace the circle. Then I used a utility knife to start the hole and lexan scissors to finish it. using a hole saw is a lot messier and loud. Also the tubing is vinyl I think, the tubing figjam talks about is hard as hell harder than drip irrigation.
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I added a fill hole that had threads to help compress the lid to make the hole airtight. Just unscrew the plug and use a funnel to add water, taking off the lid is a huge hassle. I also used 2 zip ties to tied the wire to the handle so the wires doent accidentally get yanked off.
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The fan cost $30, but you can get it here for $4! Buy extra
https://www.jameco.com/webapp/wcs/store ... 2162880_-1
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I googled the pin diagram and they keep showing that pin 1 is ground (neg) and pin 2 is SUPPOSED to be positive, but after endlessly trying I find out pin 4 is your real positive. The other 2 pins are for the tach reading and pwm speed control. You don’t need those, I cut mine off.
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Ok back to the cooler design, I used various washers to give the bolts more area to safely torque those down because the plastic lid is thin. I only used 1 layer of padding because I can use the other half of the sheet to make a whole new cooler. I soldered the pump and fan by combining them together and then put a 12 volt socket at the end which has a red indicator light and a built in 8 amp fuse.
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FIGJAM uses a copper wire and heat to melt the holes in the tubing. The harbor freight pump is redesigned. It’s smaller and maybe weaker because water barely flows out of it. but it does work fine. I used a smaller drill bit than what he used. And it’s cleaner actually than melting the holes. I used 2 part glue becaue polystyrene will not bond to most glues. This glue has a pen that’s an activator and then you put the glue on after. I glued plastic hooks so I could stretch rubber band to hold the pump in place.
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You could use a portable battery/air compressor like this to give a 7 amp hours of power, or you could make your own easily by buy a regular car battery and a battery box with a 12v socket added in.
Some improvements to this design is to buy a DC wireless remote from amazon so you can turn this thing on/off when you want. http://www.amazon.com/RM01-Channel-Wire ... J3K3QIGB0V
Also I want a DC digital timer so I can set it to turn off in say 4 hours so I can refill the water. http://www.amazon.com/Amico-Digital-Pow ... V8G0NHIB4O
My initial intention was to use a tarp and funnel this thing through the car window, but I think I’ll just have it inside the car. It’s hot as hell already and this isn’t as cold as the car AC so I’m gonna keep it on the passenger window aims inches from my face. Oh yeah another thing is I might buy a renogy 100 watt monocrystalline solar panel and wire it to a sunforce charge controller and then maybe wire that to a separate battery system from the car ( 6 volt golf cart batteries wired in series to make 12 volts is the best way to do this or buy a 12v dual purpose battery. A good 6v battery is Trojan T-105-RE) . then I will also connect a inverter to this battery. From my calculations you need a minimum of a 50 watt panel to run this cooler for 12-14 hours per day, every day. You can fabricate a car roof mound for the panel by using neodymium magnets or 3M VBH double sided tape or buy a roof rack from thule or Yakima.

http://www.amazon.com/Sunforce-60031-Di ... WTK0QZUYIR
http://www.amazon.com/RENOGY-Monocrysta ... DF4NRBNTUL
if you run this off your car battery know that regular lead acid cannot be constantly drained past 50% or it will eventually be damaged permanently. Maybe it’ll lasts a year, maybe 2 or 5 but you will damage it. so buy a battery charger or use solar panels to keep it charged. The battery tender jr is .750 amps and it took me 3 days on and off to get the car battery charged, use something with a higher output or you will go crazy.

Also I expected this thing to be as cold as my car AC and sound like a full size vacuum cleaner and move air like a commercial jet, it doesn’t but it is pretty good if you have realistic expectations.
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby Bounce530 » Mon Jul 29, 2013 8:34 pm

The CFM numbers are different from the $30 fan to the $4 fan.
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby FIGJAM » Mon Jul 29, 2013 8:57 pm

Your pads are touching the sides of the bucket at the holes.

It's gonna leak! :roll:
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby Elderberry » Mon Jul 29, 2013 9:00 pm

FIGJAM wrote:Your pads are touching the sides of the bucket at the holes.

It's gonna leak! :roll:

But it's an improvement. :shock:
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby Canoe » Mon Jul 29, 2013 9:02 pm

eksine wrote:... My initial intention was to use a tarp and funnel this thing through the car window, but I think I’ll just have it inside the car. It’s hot as hell already and this isn’t as cold as the car AC so I’m gonna keep it on the passenger window aims inches from my face. ...

I'm not understanding this. Can you explain further, or provide a photo?
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby MikeGyver » Mon Jul 29, 2013 9:36 pm

First off, I wouldnt call that an improvement, just a different way of doing it.

As Figjam said Its going to leak with your foam against the holes and the inside of your car will get wet.

Before trying to make something better than the original, you should make the original and see how it works. I always fill mine through the side holes so taking the top off is unnecessary. Putting it inside your car isn't going to do much. For it to work it needs fresh dry air not recirculated slightly wet air. You can notice the difference just between inside and outside a tent, so inside a car I'm not sure it will do much at all.

Just my $0.02
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby FIGJAM » Mon Jul 29, 2013 10:00 pm

jkisha wrote:
FIGJAM wrote:Your pads are touching the sides of the bucket at the holes.

It's gonna leak! :roll:

But it's an improvement. :shock:


Not even a little bit. :lol:

There's a lot of missinformation, and I don't intend to rewrite or correct it all. :roll:
Last edited by FIGJAM on Mon Jul 29, 2013 10:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby theCryptofishist » Mon Jul 29, 2013 10:03 pm

Great. Now there are two cooler threads I don't understand.
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby Canoe » Mon Jul 29, 2013 10:17 pm

FIGJAM wrote:There's a lot of missinformation, and I don't intent to rewrite or correct it all. :roll:

I've started writing such up, so people won't make the same mistakes he's making.
(like this close to leaving I need something else to do)

This is the classic reason why some DIY swamp-coolers fail on-playa. Bruce has looked at the designs that work, figures he knows how they work, and then "improved" a design instead of making it the way the tried & true Playa-Tested©)'( designs are constructed.


Excellent build quality Bruce, but you've got some of the required details wrong, if you want it to work well.
Once I've finished writing it up, I'll post it here so you can correct the details that will allow it to work for you on the playa. They're simple details, but they are required.
I've got to make a quick trip out of country tomorrow, so it won't be posted til the day after.

To anyone else looking at this tread, it looks pretty but please don't do what he's done.
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby trilobyte » Mon Jul 29, 2013 10:25 pm

Hello and welcome to the boards. I've got to say, it's both an ambitious first post and an unusual approach to saying hello to a community. Good luck with your cooler!
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby eksine » Tue Jul 30, 2013 4:49 am

Bounce530 wrote:The CFM numbers are different from the $30 fan to the $4 fan.


it's not though I kept checking and they all say abf1212she-xxx , with xxx being some different number, but all the fan models I saw said 151cfm or something within 1 or 2 cfm of that. so unless I'm missing something, they are all the same fan and all 1.6 amps
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby eksine » Tue Jul 30, 2013 4:51 am

FIGJAM wrote:Your pads are touching the sides of the bucket at the holes.

It's gonna leak! :roll:


I did get a leak when I did initial testing inside the house, but surprisingly I took it and set it on the concrete ouside the car, plugged it into the car 12volt and ....it doesn't leak
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby eksine » Tue Jul 30, 2013 4:56 am

Canoe wrote:
eksine wrote:... My initial intention was to use a tarp and funnel this thing through the car window, but I think I’ll just have it inside the car. It’s hot as hell already and this isn’t as cold as the car AC so I’m gonna keep it on the passenger window aims inches from my face. ...

I'm not understanding this. Can you explain further, or provide a photo?


I was going to use .030" polycarbonate lexan sheets to wedge between the car window, cut out a hole for the ducting , but lexan is expensive, so then I though about using masking tape or masking tape and cut out a 9/10mil tarp and tape it to the car window so it seals it then cut a hole for the ducting. it would look ghetto and the cooler isn't as cold as i thought so the best way with the heat is put the cooler on the passenger side floor and aim the ducting litterally inches from your face/body.
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby eksine » Tue Jul 30, 2013 5:05 am

Mrpatatomoto wrote:First off, I wouldnt call that an improvement, just a different way of doing it.

As Figjam said Its going to leak with your foam against the holes and the inside of your car will get wet.

Before trying to make something better than the original, you should make the original and see how it works. I always fill mine through the side holes so taking the top off is unnecessary. Putting it inside your car isn't going to do much. For it to work it needs fresh dry air not recirculated slightly wet air. You can notice the difference just between inside and outside a tent, so inside a car I'm not sure it will do much at all.

Just my $0.02


well the fill hole, saving the extra layer of padding so you can make more coolers or change out your pad, my advice on adding a solar panel with a battery and charge controller, a wireless remote, digital shutoff timer, a ducting tube with aluminum duct, a way to secure the pump because the new design has suction cups but they lose suction, adding a 12v socket, using a walmart bucket because i hear the home depot bucket bio degrades in the sun after a year due to uv exposure, I mean seriously I think theres at least a couple of improvements in there.

I thought about the leak too and touching the pads through the holes on the outside feels really really wet too, but seriously..it doesn't leak, I don't know why. i don't want to fill the bucket through the side holes because you might break the airseal of the pad. I think the seal makes it more efficient, it makes it so the airflow has to go through the pad instead of around it. The outside theory of it working better was my assumption too, it's not true and it requires a way of fabricating some seal for the car. it's going to be better inside the car i think anyways
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby Schtev » Tue Jul 30, 2013 5:07 am

So when are you and FIGJAM fighting to the death in the Thunderdome? Don't wanna miss that! :mrgreen:
Last edited by Schtev on Tue Jul 30, 2013 5:13 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby eksine » Tue Jul 30, 2013 5:11 am

FIGJAM wrote:
jkisha wrote:
FIGJAM wrote:Your pads are touching the sides of the bucket at the holes.

It's gonna leak! :roll:

But it's an improvement. :shock:


Not even a little bit. :lol:

There's a lot of missinformation, and I don't intend to rewrite or correct it all. :roll:


Hey FIGJAM, thanks for posting. yes please give me some insight to what I did wrong and why.
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby Canoe » Tue Jul 30, 2013 6:03 am

again,
Canoe wrote:
FIGJAM wrote:There's a lot of missinformation, and I don't intent to rewrite or correct it all. :roll:
I've started writing such up, so people won't make the same mistakes he's making...
Excellent build quality Bruce, but you've got some of the required details wrong, if you want it to work well.
Once I've finished writing it up, I'll post it here so you can correct the details that will allow it to work for you on the playa. They're simple details, but they are required.
I've got to make a quick trip out of country tomorrow, so it won't be posted til the day after.

To anyone else looking at this tread, it looks pretty but please don't do what he's done.

There is a lot to correct, and it takes explanation so you'll understand why, and that takes time to write, so I hope to post the required corrections tomorrow. Sorry you have to wait, but I have to take a short trip today.
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby Canoe » Tue Jul 30, 2013 6:16 am

So you have something to look up or can work on setting up attaching the ducting for the cool swamp-cooler air into the vehicle from outside, here's:

- A swamp-cooler is not used like an A/C unit. An A/C unit processes the air inside your shelter over and over to remove the heat and throw the cooled air back out of the A/C unit. This is like your car's A/C in recirculation mode.
- A swamp-cooler takes the hot dry outside air and drops it's temperature with evaporative cooling, and this cooled moist air is ducted into the shelter, both providing you with cooler air and pushing out the hot air inside the shelter.
- Your bucket cooler will not cool very much nor for very long, sitting on the floor of your car, as the air inside will soon be moist and there will be no evaporative cooling. All you'll have is a large odd looking fan...
- A bucket-cooler is designed to sit outside surrounded by the hot dry air it needs to work, not sitting inside your car trying to process air like an A/C unit.
- Therefore you are going to need to have it outisde the car and duct it back into the car and you're going to need to provide an exhaust vent (you can crack a window as required when you run the cooler). Sitting on the ground is fine. A tarp or masking tape will not hold with the heat nor wind of the playa. Get Gaffer's Tape for taping things to a vehicle to minimize the chance of damaging the paint. Instead of the lexan, you can use thin plywood and paint it. If the plywood is cut to fit exactly, you might get away with painter's tape, but to be sure, get some Gaffer's Tape.
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby Sham » Tue Jul 30, 2013 6:51 am

I don't know how well it works, but eksine's swamp cooler is very impressive looking. :D
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby FIGJAM » Tue Jul 30, 2013 7:56 am

eksine, your cooler looks very well made, but if you're not getting a 30 degree change in temperature when there's less than 10% humidity, I would'nt call that an "improvement".

That connector is a toilet flange and any hardwear store should have it.

I'm useing the same tubing.

I don't know what kind of bit you used to get holes that clean, but when I drill that soft tubing it leaves burs that interfere with the flow.

Here's the fan that puts out 190 cfm for 1.25 amps. (look at the specs)

http://www.frozencpu.com/products/8556/fan-533/Delta_120_x_38mm_High-Speed_Fan_-_19048_CFM_AFB1212SHE-CF00.html?tl=g36c435s1108&id=TMxuD2fh

AC removes moisture from the air, that's why they're made to recirculate the air.

Coolers have to have dry hot air to make the science work.

Ducting: Get a piece of r-max and cut it to fit your window and cut a hole that will snuggly fit your tube.

Put the R-max in the window and roll the window closed to hold it in place.

The shorter the ducting the better.

Check your temps!

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Water temp after the coolers been running for 10 minutes.

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Tweek your design and it will be fine. 8)
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby Conduit » Tue Jul 30, 2013 8:17 am

"I soldered the pump and fan by combining them together and then put a 12 volt socket at the end which has a red indicator light and a built in 8 amp fuse."

I learned the hard way that this will not work if you are useing the Harbor Freight solar pump. The solar pump is 7v and the battery is 12v which means that you will fry your pump after some time. I bought a 6v voltage reducer that wires inline with the pump. I haven't tested this yet but I do know that I did burn out my pump when it was wired like you have yours set up currently. I'm stealing your idea about zip tying the wires to the handel.
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby FIGJAM » Tue Jul 30, 2013 10:37 am

The very fist bucket cooler I made had the pad set up like yours.

It leaked!

So I added a layer of shade cloth between the bucket and pad.

This fixed the leak, but seriously restricted the air flow.

The "Tube" design took care of all that, but keeping the halo centered on the pad became the next hurdle.

The inner sleeve sticking an inch above the outer pad keeps the halo aligned and adds evap surface.

The halo itself acts as a gasket against the bottom of the lid so that all the air has to pass through the wet pad.

The tube design allows the air to circulate around the entire pad once it enters the bucket through the holes which gives you a complete free flow of air.

Image

You did'nt shorten the ends of the T connector which will create a dry strip on the pad letting hot air though that strip.

You did a good job, but I won't recommend this design to people as is.

All the other bells and whistles add to the expence and are not really needed.

Zip tieing the wire to the handle is a good idea, but I achieve the same effect by wrapping the pump/fan cord around the duct a couple of times, and I don't need tools to completely disasemble my cooler if I need to.

Mines been to the playa 3 times now with no changes (same pads) and surprises everyone who has ever sat in front of it in my shade.

I also use it when I have to park on corners selling cactus when it's 110 outside.

Image

Believe me, a lot of trial and error went into my design, but don't let that stop you from experimenting.

Bring it by 5 and H for a side by side test.

I'll have my thermometer! 8)
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby eksine » Tue Jul 30, 2013 10:51 am

I found out why it "doesn't leak" . when the pad is completely dry it leaks for about 5 seconds, you lose like a spoonful or 2 of water then it doesnt leak any more. the water was leaking from the TOP of the holes then when the pad was soaked the wicking action stops the leak, going against gravity. so if you want to blame me yes it leaks but NO it really doesn't leak.
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby FIGJAM » Tue Jul 30, 2013 10:55 am

I did'nt blame anybody.

I just stated test results. :?
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby eksine » Tue Jul 30, 2013 11:03 am

FIGJAM I used kawasaki titanium drill bits. I used a 5/64th inch bit, its tiny and the holes are super clean. but i'm also using vinly tubing. I'm gonna buy that thermometer you have and test it. I don't think I could have made this wrong, I'll get pictures later.
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby eksine » Tue Jul 30, 2013 11:04 am

FIGJAM wrote:I did'nt blame anybody.

I just stated test results. :?


no that was directed to the other 2 guys who said it leaks, not you
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby FIGJAM » Tue Jul 30, 2013 11:12 am

Not wrong.

Just different. :lol:
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby eksine » Tue Jul 30, 2013 1:11 pm

FIGJAM your pump's specs says I think, 87 gallons per minute at 9 volts, so ...thats about 110 gallon per minute if its 12 volts? my pump is rated at 42 gallons per minute, but i used the battery so maybe ...40-i have no idea gpm. anyways your pump sounds like its over twice the flow so maybe thats why mine is flowing slow, though it's not doing anything bad functionally, the pads are soaking wet all around. i tried the centect thermometer. I'm only getting about 15 or 17 degree F difference inside and outside. I'm not using 2 pads though and my pads are touching. it says my climate is 36% humidity today. damn....
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby eksine » Tue Jul 30, 2013 1:13 pm

oh right, my question is how were you able to acheive a 30 degree farenheit difference?
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Re: changes to the FIGJAM's evaporative cooler design

Postby FIGJAM » Tue Jul 30, 2013 1:37 pm

It's the humidity!!!

The dryer the air, the better it works.

That's why you can't set it up inside a closed space and expect it to be more than a humidifier. :lol:

Image

That's 80 gallons an hour and it's a 12 volt DC pump.

http://compare.ebay.com/like/400519392411?var=lv&ltyp=AllFixedPriceItemTypes&var=sbar

The trick bag with the pumps is that although the 12 volt submersable pumps are easy to find on the internet, the specs can be misleading.

I've seen pump that advertise 60 GPH, but have a chart showing that at 20"s they only pump 11GPH.

There are tiny pumps that say 40GPH, and they will pump that much, untill they have to lift the water at all.

These pumps don't create presser so much as just move the water. 8)
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