Battery Operated Fans?

Swamp Coolers, Cooler Management, Dry Ice, Misting Systems, and just plain how to beat the heat.

Postby gypsy68 » Fri Apr 16, 2010 12:13 pm

I like to have damp washcloths in my ice chest ready to use when I come back from being out all day. It feels great to pull one out from the cooler, and wipe down my face and neck.

I will soak washcloths in water, bag them up in sandwich bags, and freeze them. Sometimes I will add a little lemon juice to a group of wash cloths. I like the thinner washcloths. Usually you can find a bundle of 12 for around 5 to 7 dollars.
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Postby stray0176 » Fri Apr 16, 2010 12:19 pm

I have a ton of those washcloths, target sold them 10/$1 on clearance last year. Thats a great idea, because its easy and it uses something I already have. Thanks!
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Postby illy dilly » Fri Apr 16, 2010 12:24 pm

AntiM wrote:Our 12V is a deep cell marine battery. It runs basic camp lighting for the entire week. Very basic. We do have a small solar panel for it to give it a boost, but rarely need to do so.

Yeah I've seen solar trickle chargers with built in "one way protection" that is supposed to keep the battery from decharging if its not charging.
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Postby dragonpilot » Fri Apr 16, 2010 1:58 pm

stray0176 wrote:dragonpilot- Do you have the Coleman tent fan or the portable one? Those were the only two I saw. Im worried about them sucking down batteries..


It's the smaller portable one.

Fer sure ya gotta bring extra batteries...but yer only gonna run the thing a coupla hours after sunrise. I've managed one set of five over 6 days. Any tent exposed to direct sunlight is gonna be a sweat box. My usage gives me an extra hour or two of morning sleep.
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Postby Elorrum » Fri Apr 16, 2010 4:46 pm

Image
One neat thing about the dates of Burning Man is that many of the larger retailers are already clearancing their summer stuff to get on with (ack) Christmas and winter after Labor Day. I watch and wait for the things I covet in April and May. I got one of these little misters (cool blast personal mister) for about 5 dollars. The bottom pulls down and up like a bike pump, pressurize, then push the little button, and voila! mist. It's about the size of a bottle of taco sauce.
Image
a small garden sprayer is nice too.
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Postby Bounce530 » Fri Apr 16, 2010 9:57 pm

could you fill it with taco sauce?
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Postby Elorrum » Sat Apr 17, 2010 6:01 am

Bounce530 wrote:could you fill it with taco sauce?

p'raps. It would be nice for any sentient, opposable thumb enabled, burritos and tacos to use when they feel the need. It is said that spicy foods are more popular in hot climates because of, eh, what, and some sort of reason relative to that, spicy foods, sweat, feel cooler. not sure exactly.
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Postby dragonfly Jafe » Sat Apr 17, 2010 6:48 am

I have had excellent results running your standard household 120vac fan (20" box type or swivel type on stand) from an invertor and 12v deep cycle battery. Position yourself downwind, then spray the blades with water every now and then (or drip from a cup mounted on top).

I also have one of those small battery fans pictured earlier - perfect for naps in the afternoon, positioning it right on the bed/pad with you. They also run off 12v deep cycle batteries.
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Postby Captain Goddammit » Sat Apr 17, 2010 9:13 am

Using those little solar patio lamps as your battery charger for your fan isn't gonna work very well. Those only generate a TINY amount of power, which is all the L.E.D lamps need. Fans draw a lot more, even little bitty ones. You need a real charger, solar or otherwise. If you have a vehicle, you can use a 12-volt charger powered by your car battery, it shouldn't draw enough power to be a problem. If anyone at or near your camp has power, either their own generator or on the Burning Man power grid, they probably won't mind if you wanna plug in a little battery charger, they don't draw enough current to matter. I always end up running such cords for my neighbors without power.

None of these ideas work even a fraction as well as setting up an air-conditioned sleeping space. The only expensive part is the quiet generator... old trailers are super cheap, and window-mount air conditioners are cheap too, nearly free at garage sales or craigslist.
If you're really that sensitive, it would seem worth it.

I just sleep during the hottest parts of the day, and go out more in the evening/night. Deal with the heat? Bullshit! Why do that?
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Postby stray0176 » Sat Apr 17, 2010 10:23 am

dragonpilot- thanks for the answer about the batteries, now I have an approximate number of batteries I need to bring.

ellorrum- i have one of those mister things, I used it last year. I'm thinking about upgrading to a larger one this year, someone posted a mistymate link and I think I'm going to invest in one of those.

Captain Goddammit- last year I was nowhere near anyone with power, hopefully I can be luckier this year. I'm going to ask around though about a generator, maybe someone I know has one and I don't know it yet. I saw a post on here somewhere about building a box to put a loud generator in, or something like that. If I can find a generator that would be cool

Everyone keeps posting about deep cell 12v batteries. They look like golf cart batteries. At least they look smaller than a car battery. I'm thinking about looking into one of these things. I just don't know anything about power, batteires, solar, etc...time to learn..
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Postby Captain Goddammit » Sat Apr 17, 2010 10:54 am

stray0176 wrote: I saw a post on here somewhere about building a box to put a loud generator in, or something like that. If I can find a generator that would be cool

Everyone keeps posting about deep cell 12v batteries. They look like golf cart batteries. At least they look smaller than a car battery. I'm thinking about looking into one of these things.

OK I 'splain it a little...
Deep cycle batteries are not any particular size or shape.
Basically, "starting" batteries, like cars have, are designed internally to provide short bursts of extremely high current, ideal for cranking a car engine. They don't do as well when used to provide smaller amounts of power over a longer period of time.
Deep cycle batteries are designed to be good at delivering lower current for a longer time, which is what you need at a camp for lights, fans, radios, etc.


New, it's gonna run you roughly $1000 for the little 2000-watt Honda. (Yamaha also makes good quiet portables.) If you have no use for it other than the Burning Man trip, that's pretty pricey. Second hand, IF you can find anyone who wants to sell one (hardly anyone does!) they still fetch $700-ish.
You can buy much cheaper units, especially second hand, but they are no bargain, they're wasted money because they make NO power when you and your neighbors can't stand to listen to them running! There are always plenty of cheap generators for sale... this is why.
Yeah you can put an insulated box around it to quiet it some, but it'll still be obnoxious as hell. They need lots of air for cooling, you can't totally enclose them. NEVER buy a Coleman or other "camping" generator! LOUD! And I'd stay away from the cheaper Chinese ones too. Poorly made, no parts availability.
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Postby Captain Goddammit » Sat Apr 17, 2010 10:58 am

stray0176 wrote: I saw a post on here somewhere about building a box to put a loud generator in, or something like that. If I can find a generator that would be cool

Everyone keeps posting about deep cell 12v batteries. They look like golf cart batteries. At least they look smaller than a car battery. I'm thinking about looking into one of these things.

OK I 'splain it a little...
Deep cycle batteries are not any particular size or shape.
Basically, "starting" batteries, like cars have, are designed internally to provide short bursts of extremely high current, ideal for cranking a car engine. They don't do as well when used to provide smaller amounts of power over a longer period of time.
Deep cycle batteries are designed to be good at delivering lower current for a longer time, which is what you need at a camp for lights, fans, radios, etc.


New, it's gonna run you roughly $1000 for the little 2000-watt Honda generator. (Yamaha also makes good quiet portables.) If you have no use for it other than the Burning Man trip, that's pretty pricey. Second hand, IF you can find anyone who wants to sell one (hardly anyone does!) they still fetch $700-ish. They only weigh about 50 pounds and have a nice carrying handle, so stealing one is a lower-cost option and fairly easy to do.
Just kidding.
You can buy much cheaper units, especially second hand, but they are no bargain, they're wasted money because they make NO power when you and your neighbors can't stand to listen to them running! There are always plenty of cheap generators for sale... this is why.
Yeah you can put an insulated box around it to quiet it some, but it'll still be obnoxious as hell. They need lots of air for cooling, you can't totally enclose them. NEVER buy a Coleman or other "camping" generator! LOUD! And I'd stay away from the cheaper Chinese ones too. Poorly made, no parts availability.
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Postby stray0176 » Sat Apr 17, 2010 11:06 am

I have no reason to buy a generator, besides burning man, and I have nowhere to store it. I get your point about the noise issue, I looked at craigslist for generators, but didn't find any quiet ones. A generator just looks like it would be too many problems rolled into one for it to be worth me buying one.

I would love to try the deep cycle battery option, even though I know nothing about batteries. I get that I'm looking for a deep cell battery, someone mentioned a trickle charger, and I found a new 12v solar trickle charger for $40. I could get that and the battery for a couple hundred bucks, but I have no idea how to set it all up. Time to google..
Now my question is would a 12v battery power a fan? Like a nice fan, because I could get a few[about three] smaller battery operated fans[D batteries] and buy one or two of those solar battery chargers for about the same price as buying a 12v deep cell battery and setting all of that up..
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Postby FIGJAM » Sat Apr 17, 2010 1:33 pm

Junkyards should have fans from cooling systems off of newer wrecks. Their 12 volt and would push alot of air. radiator fans.
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Postby Elorrum » Sat Apr 17, 2010 2:10 pm

stray, you'll find a lot of well informed battery and solar people here, and lots of info on the internet as well. AEZ, alternative energy zone has good information and diagrams about a small solar set up. and all sorts of other good burning man stuff, and I think they are linked directly from the burning man home.

My own twisted mind contains this about batteries. (my thoughts are not a reliable reference for anybody spending money): as a container with a fixed volume. some is pouring out, some is pouring in. How much, how fast in either direction. Regular car battery pours a lot out all at once and doesn't like to be run to empty before recharging, and really doesn't like to sit for long with a deep discharge, so it's a bad candidate for applied household/camp use. Deep cycle can pour out smaller amounts for a longer time, and doesn't mind getting a lot poured out and recharging back up repeatedly. You need to know battery capacity, appliance draw (how much out), and charge inputs and see if the math all adds up. With a system that is charging some (see how little those trickle chargers for a car dashboard actually put out) and using more, your battery might still last a week before it runs down. again, check the math.
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Postby Captain Goddammit » Sat Apr 17, 2010 3:47 pm

FIGJAM wrote:Junkyards should have fans from cooling systems off of newer wrecks. Their 12 volt and would push alot of air. radiator fans.


Car radiator fans do push a lot of air, but draw a LOT of power.
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Postby FIGJAM » Sat Apr 17, 2010 4:20 pm

Eye captain. I was thinking of a homemade evap cooler. In az. ive use them all my life, but not 12 volt. Evaps work best when they push alot of air so i thought one of those rad fans would do the trick. No?
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Postby rodiponer » Sat Apr 17, 2010 9:04 pm

This guy uses computer fans for his 12 volt evaporative cooler:
http://www.thefieldlab.org/fun.html
http://www.flickr.com/photos/texasdeser ... 888462649/
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Postby Captain Goddammit » Sun Apr 18, 2010 7:18 am

FIGJAM wrote:Eye captain. I was thinking of a homemade evap cooler. In az. ive use them all my life, but not 12 volt. Evaps work best when they push alot of air so i thought one of those rad fans would do the trick. No?


Oh hell yeah, a car radiator fan would be an excellent evap cooler fan, it's built for extreme conditions and moves lots of air, usually in the neighborhood of 2000CFM, but they draw around 8 to 10 amps. If your power supply and recharging capabilities are limited, that would be the issue.
Assuming very limited power supply, a weaker fan is gonna have to do.
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Deep Cycle Battery

Postby EmilyD » Sun Apr 18, 2010 5:36 pm

Hey Electrical Folks,

I have this deep cycle battery which I use to power LED string (Christmas) lights inside my artcar. At home I keep ti charged on a trickle charger but I've just bought a 15 watt solar charger to bring to the Playa. I am wondering if it is safe to keep this battery inside my car, with the windows closed. The solar charger will be in there also. My goal is to keep dust off all the components as well as keep as much out of the car as I can. I also don't want any of this equipment walking away. We won't be opening the car more than once or twice a day.

Here's the one I have. It is sealed so I'm wondering if that's safe to keep inside in the heat?

http://www.jcwhitney.com/yellow-top-aut ... 23071.jcwx
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Postby rodiponer » Sun Apr 18, 2010 6:10 pm

Your AGM battery will be fine in the heat.

But the solar panel will not do as well inside the car. Solar panels have lower output when they are hot, and a lot less sun will reach it through the windshield. It's working with colors of light that you can't see, which the windshield blocks more than you can see with your eyes. So the absolute nerdiest best is to put it on top of your car with a spacer underneath it, so that air can circulate underneath it and cool it.

Do you have a link to the LED string lights you are using? The little Optima batteries are great, but they only have 38 to 66 amp/hours of capacity, depending on which one you got. I think they would last all night the first time, but if the little 15 watt solar panel is the only charging source I think you would be running a deficit from day to day and they may run completely flat before the end of the week.
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Postby AntiM » Mon Apr 19, 2010 4:07 am

We use solar LED strings of lights. They're very dusty, and one set kept working after some asshat tore it in half (long story), well, half kept working. Entirely repairable.

Dust won't hurt the battery or the solar panel, they clean up nicely, and most people don't steal them specifically. Gennies, yes, batteries not so much I've heard of.

Change back to topic ... the 12v fans normally plug into the cigarette lighter. You can get cigarette lighter sockets with alligator clips which hook onto the battery terminals. Larry has it so he can clip almost anything onto the battery. We do have two batteries, so one can charge while the other is use if needed, which is overkill, but then you never know when nuclear winter will roll around.
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Postby chris2010 » Sun May 09, 2010 8:54 am

Great Info! I had been looking into getting a few fans for BM... I saw some 12V Fans and since I will be bringing some Solar Panels I can hopefully charge some batteries too :)
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Re:

Postby Lollipop » Sat Jan 14, 2012 6:45 pm

Gizmo wrote:A few of my tricks.
The mister bottle with battery op fan is good for when you are sitting around camp. Get the wide mouth version so you can fill it with ice and water.
I got a couple nylon money belts and filled them with ice and wore around my waist when out on the Playa. Filled a 5 gallon plastic bucket with ice, and put the battery operated fan up against it, blowing on my face first thing in the morning to sleep a little longer when the sun came up. Drank ice water all day long. Got a big mouth insulated bottle that holds a lot. Good hat and light colored clothes.

Met some old timers who said their survival trick was to have a cargo trailer with window AC unit and generator (Honda 2000 will work). It's totally dark and cold in there, so you can nap anytime, even in the middle of the day.


GREAT IDEAS!
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Re:

Postby Lollipop » Sat Jan 14, 2012 6:47 pm

gypsy68 wrote:I like to have damp washcloths in my ice chest ready to use when I come back from being out all day. It feels great to pull one out from the cooler, and wipe down my face and neck.

I will soak washcloths in water, bag them up in sandwich bags, and freeze them. Sometimes I will add a little lemon juice to a group of wash cloths. I like the thinner washcloths. Usually you can find a bundle of 12 for around 5 to 7 dollars.


Also great ideas!
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