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Old 12-07-2018, 11:50 PM   #161
Graphite Dave
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Originally Posted by kinnon View Post
Brilliant Dave. And oddly enough, I was just thinking how I hadn't used my Anova Sous-Vide machine since the early Spring after getting an email pitch from Anova.
Thank "sprint2freedom" on this site. Did not know what a Sous Vide machine was until he said that was what he used to heat shower water. Googled it and sure enough in my opinion he had discovered the simple solution for a van shower. So I spent some time trying to optimize the idea.

Today I ordered a battery and parts to make a portable 12 volt power pack so the system could be used anywhere. We live in Ca. where there are fires. Expect next fire season to have PGE regularly turn off the power so they do not get sued for starting the fire. We can use the portable shower water heater in the house to shower. Heat the water in the van and carry it into the house and power the pump with the portable power pack.
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Old 12-08-2018, 12:19 AM   #162
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Geez, I'm glad all I have to worry about is hurricanes and tornadoes. Oh! and living just 70 miles from a SAC Base (no longer called that) but it still flies B-52's every day. Don't know if they are still going out armed with nukes or not.

Gene
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Old 01-17-2019, 04:37 PM   #163
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Default Re: Orton DIY Transit

The ortontransit.info web site has been replaced with a new site. About double the information, better menu organization and pictures that can be enlarged.

Building a conversion is the basically the same no matter what brand the vehicle is.

Hopefully the work and money spent in improving the site will be useful to others.

https://www.ortontransit.info/
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Old 02-06-2019, 02:08 PM   #164
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Default Re: Orton DIY Transit

Did a test of my method of staying warm at night. Do not want a Espar due to the noise which is not compatible with city street parking or my sleeping.

Installation information:

Van is a 148" WB high roof Transit. About same interior length and width of a 144" WB Sprinter but 5" taller inside. Van has a slider door window and two back windows that were covered with Reflectix. There is a 27" wide sleeping platform at the back of the van with two REI 25" x 70" x 2 1/2" self inflating camp pads for a "mattress". Use a zero degree sleeping bag on top of the camp pads. Platform is surrounded by a insulated tent. Two layers of cloth with 1/2" Thinsulate between the layers. Back curtain is between the platform and the back doors that goes from the ceiling to two inches below the platform. Front curtain is in 3 parts to allow in/out entry and it closes off the front of the sleeping platform. There is a $30 1" x 50" x 18" Zonetech car back seat heating pad placed between the two self inflating camp pads. The Zonetech has two heat settings of 33 watts or 45 watts. Only used the 33 watt setting for the test. Initially I placed the Zonetech on top of both self inflating camp pads. That proved too be to hot so moved the heating pad between the two camp pads which solved that problem. Zonetech replaced the $100 Electro-Warmth bunk heating pad that I initially used. Two of the Electro-Warmth pads failed so I looked for a better solution. No curtain behind the front seats to wall off the cab or cab window covers. Van is insulated with polyiso, closed cell foam and Reflectix with air gap. Refrigerator was not running. The van normally uses 1% of the SOC overnight due to numerous small loads. So 1% of SOC used is not due to the heating pad.

Test:

Used a portable digital temperature gage for inside and outside the tent temperature readings. Used the Transit dash temperature to determine the outside the van temperature. Have a Magnum remote to give me the 255 amp-hr house battery state-of-charge. Started test at 100% SOC. Wore a balaclava to keep my head warm.


Results:


Time, inside tent temp., outside tent in van temp., outside van, SOC

8:00 PM, 48, 48, 39, 100

10:30 PM, 48, 48, 37, 98

12:30 AM, 46, 47, 36, 96

3:00 AM, 46, 46, 37, 95

6:00 AM, 43, 43, 36, 93


What was learned:

1. The inside the van tent idea was useless. Still hard for me to believe that it does not retain any of the body or heating pad heat inside the tent but obviously it does not.

2. Zonetech heating pad works very well. "Mattress" is very comfortable and heat level on low is about right.

3. The van insulation works. Kept inside van 7 to 9 degrees above outside temperature all night. As expected the interior temperature slowly decreased toward the outside the van temperature.

4. The seat heating pad used 6% or about 15.3 amp-hr of the house 255 amp-hr battery capacity. Easily back to 100% SOC before noon with the 300 watt solar panel power.


Next test will be determining if using the 1000 watt Magnum inverter to keep 6 gallons of water in the uninsulated shower water tank at 95 degrees is useful at night. The radiation from the tank and the 15% inefficiency of the inverter will add heat to the van interior. Will that be useful and how much house battery capacity will be used?

Do not have any difficulty warming the van in the morning. I can start the gas engine with the remote start and let it idle before getting out of bed. Dash controls set to deliver heat and the vehicle powered inverter is set to power the 750 watt electric baseboard heater in back of van.
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Last edited by Graphite Dave; 02-06-2019 at 03:19 PM.
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Old 02-06-2019, 02:27 PM   #165
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Default Re: Orton DIY Transit

I love that you've always got a different way of thinking thru these things. Thanks for documenting it.

You know about the hot water bottle in the sleeping bag trick? It's had me warm enough to be opening my sleeping bag in a single wall tent in the snow at 9,000ft and high winds lol.
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Old 02-06-2019, 05:04 PM   #166
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Impressive website Dave!!!
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Old 02-09-2019, 05:26 AM   #167
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Hi Dave, I am a little surprised that the tent didn't help much either.

I watched a show on the sami people, also sometimes known as Laplanders.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S%C3%A1mi_people

One of the interesting things that they do is to set up a "tent within a tent" with an air gap.

Of course they are dealing with much larger temperature differentials, and the tents are made from thick furs, but the concept works. They go to bed with a sort of candle for warmth.

Of course, they probably consider it to be "warm" when it is 30 F inside.
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Old 02-09-2019, 11:42 AM   #168
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Originally Posted by HarryN View Post
Hi Dave, I am a little surprised that the tent didn't help much either.

I watched a show on the sami people, also sometimes known as Laplanders.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S%C3%A1mi_people

One of the interesting things that they do is to set up a "tent within a tent" with an air gap.

Of course they are dealing with much larger temperature differentials, and the tents are made from thick furs, but the concept works. They go to bed with a sort of candle for warmth.

Of course, they probably consider it to be "warm" when it is 30 F inside.
A single candle in a snowcave does wonders for comfort.
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Old 02-09-2019, 01:56 PM   #169
Graphite Dave
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Default Re: Orton DIY Transit

Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryN View Post
Hi Dave, I am a little surprised that the tent didn't help much either.

I watched a show on the sami people, also sometimes known as Laplanders.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S%C3%A1mi_people

One of the interesting things that they do is to set up a "tent within a tent" with an air gap.

Of course they are dealing with much larger temperature differentials, and the tents are made from thick furs, but the concept works. They go to bed with a sort of candle for warmth.

Of course, they probably consider it to be "warm" when it is 30 F inside.
Also hard for me to believe tent did not make any difference. Suspect that a much colder outside temperature would provide some difference. In a van it is difficult to have a sealed tent with curtains. Lots of gaps for air to circulate.

I have a couple more tests to conduct. One is to see if leaving my inverter on powering my 6 gallon uninsulated shower water tank overnight at 95 degrees makes any difference in van inside temperature. A second more ridiculous test will be using car seat heater pads hung on either side of my head to attempt to keep the air warmer around my head.

What I do know is a back seat heating pad works very well to keep the body warm and the van is insulated well enough to keep the van interior about 10 degrees warmer overnight than the outside temperature. Slowly the van interior loses temperature and eventually would match the outside temperature without adding heat inside.
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Old 02-09-2019, 05:29 PM   #170
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I suspect the air gaps might be a large part of the issue.

Frankly, tent canvas and curtains are not furs either.

Sometimes I wonder if we should be going back to using thick carpet for wall covering.
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