cooling your tent or van

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

Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby kstlfido » Wed Aug 15, 2012 1:19 am

Hi Figjam-

Our camp's going to make a few bucket coolers. I cut the pad dimensions as indicated below-

Cut the first pad 33 1/2x13 inches.

Roll this pad into a tube and silicone or hand stitch the seam.

This will give you a tube 13 inches tall.

Cut a second piece of pad 24x13 inches and roll into a tight tube.


33.5" makes too wide a tube for the bucket. I'm using the 5 gallon buckets from Tru-Value (the same as Home Depot's).

Also should the inner pad be a smidge taller? Or do you just pull it up a bit to make contact with the lid when closed?

-K
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby FIGJAM » Wed Aug 15, 2012 4:42 am

I'm suprised the messurement was'nt the same, but you get the idea.

You can also staple the seam on the outside pad.

Just pull up a bit on the inside pad. 8)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby garyt » Wed Aug 15, 2012 5:39 am

Finally got done with my unicooler. A friend of mine helped me make a steel top with a hole(for adding water) and plug so I don't have to constantly open the top since its pretty snug. Not the nicest looking box but it was blowing about 70 degrees in 5 minutes. :lol:

IMG_1877.JPG

IMG_1871.JPG

IMG_1887.JPG
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby gjenkins » Wed Aug 15, 2012 7:14 am

Thanks FIGJAM, this fan rocks! I am suprised at the amount of air it moves. I went with a pumpless design ... using wicking humidifier filters. I have about 90 sqinch of filter surface area. I ran a 2 hour test yesterday and it blows a good deal of cool air, and the filters stayed moist the entire time. I went through about 2 liters of water. I may post pictures later in the week.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby FIGJAM » Wed Aug 15, 2012 8:53 am

garyt wrote:Finally got done with my unicooler. A friend of mine helped me make a steel top with a hole(for adding water) and plug so I don't have to constantly open the top since its pretty snug. Not the nicest looking box but it was blowing about 70 degrees in 5 minutes. :lol:

IMG_1877.JPG

IMG_1871.JPG

IMG_1887.JPG



It's




so




beutiful!!!!!!!!!!!


Sigh. 8)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby FIGJAM » Wed Aug 15, 2012 8:56 am

gjenkins wrote:Thanks FIGJAM, this fan rocks! I am suprised at the amount of air it moves. I went with a pumpless design ... using wicking humidifier filters. I have about 90 sqinch of filter surface area. I ran a 2 hour test yesterday and it blows a good deal of cool air, and the filters stayed moist the entire time. I went through about 2 liters of water. I may post pictures later in the week.



I'm still concerned about those wicking filters glogging because of their fine nature.

Hope it works well in the dust.

Make sure to report back after the burn! 8)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby gjenkins » Wed Aug 15, 2012 8:59 am

[quote="FIGJAM"][quote="gjenkins"]Thanks FIGJAM, this fan rocks! I am suprised at the amount of air it moves. I went with a pumpless design ... using wicking humidifier filters. I have about 90 sqinch of filter surface area. I ran a 2 hour test yesterday and it blows a good deal of cool air, and the filters stayed moist the entire time. I went through about 2 liters of water. I may post pictures later in the week.[/quote]


I'm still concerned about those wicking filters glogging because of their fine nature.

Hope it works well in the dust.

Make sure to report back after the burn! 8)[/quote]
I am covering the outside of the bucket with air filter material to minimize any dust on the wet filters.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby Groovy » Wed Aug 15, 2012 9:12 am

Hi FIGJAM,

Quick question: Have you tried adding a third layer of Dura-cool padding in the bucket? If so, did it help with cooling or did it create some sort of problem or was counterproductive? Almost done with the cooler and huge thanks for putting this together :-D

Groovy --
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby FIGJAM » Wed Aug 15, 2012 9:24 am

I've been using swamp coolers in most of the houses I've lived in.

1 layer is all we ever used.

With the bucket the 2 layers serve a dual purpose, but this isn't a case of "more is better". 8)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby kstlfido » Wed Aug 15, 2012 11:31 am

FIGJAM wrote:I'm suprised the messurement was'nt the same, but you get the idea.

You can also staple the seam on the outside pad.

Just pull up a bit on the inside pad. 8)


I siliconed the edges together, worked fine. Do you have the correct outside pad measurement?
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby FIGJAM » Wed Aug 15, 2012 2:13 pm

Just remeasured to make sure.

The outside dimention of my tube is 33.5"s.

Taken by running a piece of string around it and then messuring the string.

The pad is about 1/4" away from the holes in the bucket all the way around.

Image

As long as the fan can fit in the middle of the inner layer you're fine. 8)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby garyt » Wed Aug 15, 2012 4:15 pm

FIGJAM wrote:It's

so

beutiful!!!!!!!!!!!

Sigh. 8)


Thanks Figjam! It means a lot coming from you! Although there's still a couple of kinks. I've silicon the fuck out of it and water seems still to be able to leak a tiny little bit. I'm trying to add a 12v timer and switch that doesn't take up too much juice so it kicks on by itself at 6-630am. Don't know how to do that yet. Was thinking maybe using a relay and my solar panel as the trigger.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby FIGJAM » Wed Aug 15, 2012 5:28 pm

Take all the guts out, dry it completely, and using your finger, spread a layer of silicone over all the interior joints.

I would be very surprised if THAT does'nt fix it. 8)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby strangeloop » Wed Aug 15, 2012 5:33 pm

Image

Ready for action!
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby FIGJAM » Wed Aug 15, 2012 5:37 pm

As "worth it's wieght in"?
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby strangeloop » Wed Aug 15, 2012 5:39 pm

Solid Gold!

I made a similar one last year with your help. I'd love to make a bigger one, but this is about as good as it gets packing it on an air plane.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby garyt » Wed Aug 15, 2012 6:38 pm

FIGJAM wrote:Take all the guts out, dry it completely, and using your finger, spread a layer of silicone over all the interior joints.

I would be very surprised if THAT does'nt fix it. 8)


Have done that twice. I can see a really really small wet spot after like 10-15 minutes. At this point, I'm glad its working and all 9 gallons of it did not leak out after an overnight test.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby Canoe » Thu Aug 16, 2012 12:31 pm

gjenkins wrote:... I went with a pumpless design ... using wicking humidifier filters. I have about 90 sqinch of filter surface area. I ran a 2 hour test yesterday and it blows a good deal of cool air, and the filters stayed moist the entire time...

Please post filter model and size.
Also, what would you say the air temperature and humidity was where you were running it, and what was the output temperature?
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby Canoe » Thu Aug 16, 2012 12:34 pm

strangeloop wrote:Image

The Wizard of Oz, Dalek edition.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby jeskalgh » Thu Aug 16, 2012 1:49 pm

Hey Figjam
Any advice on connecting the fan to the battery, I have never connected anything directly to a 12v battery before and I don't want to do something stupid and fry myself! I have two gator clips that I'm going to solder to the negative and positive wires of the fan. Do I just connect them to the battery and I'm good to go? Should I connect one first and then the other or does it not matter? I think you answered this or a similar question before on this thread, I looked but I couldn't find it.

And by the way, you are the bomb :D

-strangeloop that cooler is a golden thing of beauty!
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby strangeloop » Thu Aug 16, 2012 1:56 pm

Thanks jeskalgh,

Last year I hooked my uglier cooler up to a Sears garden tractor battery with gator clips. It worked wonderfully all weekend, running about 2 hours a day. Just keep the wires separated and shielded from people.

This year I'm bringing a GoalZero battery and solar panel to keep it (and other things) powered. I've tested it out and works great, unless we have rain all week and I can't charge the battery.
http://www.goalzero.com/shop/p/60/Escap ... e-Kit/1:4/

Unfortunately this setup is expensive. I got a really good deal on mine.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby jeskalgh » Thu Aug 16, 2012 2:08 pm

Thanks strangeloop! I was a little worried and didn't want to do it wrong. Mines made out of a deli pickle bucket and it says DELI PICKLES in giant letters. Its to funny to cover up, I think I am going to paint giant pickles all over it actually (if I have time!). Those solar kits are sweet, I actually looked at those same ones when I was trying to decide to go solar or not. I think I will save the solar setup for next year when I upgrade. Keep your fingers crossed for sunny weather on the unpredictable playa this year!
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby FIGJAM » Thu Aug 16, 2012 2:14 pm

That unit only has 14AH!

For that price you could buy 3 115AH costco deep cycle batteries.

One of which would run the cooler all week for 6 hours a day without having to recharge.

But if you're happy with it, go for it. 8)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby gjenkins » Thu Aug 16, 2012 2:53 pm

[quote="jeskalgh"]Hey Figjam
Any advice on connecting the fan to the battery, I have never connected anything directly to a 12v battery before and I don't want to do something stupid and fry myself! I have two gator clips that I'm going to solder to the negative and positive wires of the fan. Do I just connect them to the battery and I'm good to go? Should I connect one first and then the other or does it not matter? I think you answered this or a similar question before on this thread, I looked but I couldn't find it.

And by the way, you are the bomb :D

-strangeloop that cooler is a golden thing of beauty![/quote]
From radio shack ...

Connected to battery: http://www.talkaboutsleep.com/images/mi ... y-plug.jpg
Connected to Fan: http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/3 ... 0,300_.jpg

Why?
1. So I can easily connect and disconnect without handling the clamps.
2. The plug connected to the fan has a 7 Amp fuse to protect from shorting out the battery.
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby FIGJAM » Thu Aug 16, 2012 3:01 pm

I put a switch on my very first bucket cooler, mounted to the lid.

Had both pump and fan hooked to it.

Did'nt bother to put them on the bucket coolers after that, but it was convenient. 8)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby jeskalgh » Thu Aug 16, 2012 3:10 pm

Thanks everyone! A switch would have been a convenient idea, I actually think I have a switch around here somewhere from another project. Anyway I just tried it out with just my gator clips and taadaaaa its works, and I didn't electrocute myself. I can feel the cool air blowing out already even though the humidity is pretty high outside, I cant wait to see what this baby can do on the playa!
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby LadyOcelot » Thu Aug 16, 2012 3:12 pm

Mr. Fig jam,

Long time lurker. The build on my unicooler is coming along nicely. Curiously, do you recommend keeping the deep cycle battery inside or outside a yurt? A ton of thanks for all your time and energy in this amazing thread.
So excited!
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby FIGJAM » Thu Aug 16, 2012 3:20 pm

Depends on the type of deep cycle you have.

Mine are AGM (absorbed glass mat) that can't spill or leak or off gas.

So they are inside with me.

If you have any kind of flooded acid battery, they off gas fumes and should be kept outside.

So a discise may be in order. (now where did I put the fake mustache and glasses!)
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby ShreddinPB » Thu Aug 16, 2012 3:49 pm

Hey, So I did my final build and everything works! One thing that is bothering me tho..
I didnt have any 10gauge wire on hand so I used a screw. Water seems to only flow out of all the holes if the circle is totally level.

Does this mean I made the holes too big so there isnt enough back preasure?
Should I use a smaller hose or just make a new circle with smaller holes?

I am using this pump
http://www.ebay.com/itm/380461971949?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1439.l2649

Also piggybacking on the other question.. I am using SLA batteries.. does it matter if they go inside our out?
They are sealed so they dont let of fumes right?
are they more efficient if kept cool?
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Re: cooling your tent or van

Postby FIGJAM » Thu Aug 16, 2012 3:53 pm

I think your holes are to big.

Try a paperclip. 8)

Look those batteries up on the internet.

Some SLAs still vent and I'm not going to give advice that might kill you.

I don't know you well enough! :twisted:
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