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Old 03-29-2011, 07:46 PM   #1
Graphite Dave
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Default Orton DIY - Maxxair Fan Install

I chose the Maxxair 6200K fan for two reasons. It was designed so it can be open while driving and it can be open in the rain. I did several things that I thought would improve the installation. I made a 3/4" plywood backing plate picture frame to install inside to reinforce the opening and I made 1/8" x 1" aluminum plates to distribute the load at the bolt heads. The RV places said the plastic frame will crack at the bolt holes so I added the aluminum strips. I also did not want to use the SS sheet metal screws supplied and instead used through bolts with an elastic stop nut.

Procedure:
1. Made a 14" x 14" plywood template with a 5/16" hole in the center and four 1/8" holes in the four corners. The 1/8" holes were 7/16" in from edge of pattern. I used a 7/8" dia. electrical knockout to get nice rounded corners in the 14" hole.
2. Drilled a 1/8" hole through the roof where I wanted center of opening. Enlarged that to 5/16". Bolted plywood template to the roof. Rotated template as required to make opening square with the Sprinter cross ribs. Tightened center bolt. Used duct tape to hold template in place.
3. Drilled four 1/8" holes in corners using template holes as guide. Removed template.
4. Enlarged four corner holes in roof to 3/8" for knockout stud. Punched the four corner holes.
5. Drew a line tangent to 7/8" dia. holes to mark saw path. Cut between each corner hole with jigsaw from inside the van. Wish I had some clear goggles to keep metal out of my eyes.
Cut 3 sides of opening and then added duct tape on top and under roof on the three cut sides to keep 14" sq. plate from falling when I made the last cut. Removed any Mercedes sound deadening material that was in the way.
6. Put plastic fan ring into opening and held it centered with duct tape.
7. Went back on top and drilled the four corner bolt holes. Bolted ring down at the four corners. Drilled remaining holes by using the plastic holes in the ring as a guide.
8. Removed ring and cleaned up and painted edges.
9. Added butyl tape under flange and added aluminum strips over plastic flanges. So sandwich was 1/8" alum.,plastic fan flange,Sprinter roof, 3/4" plywood backing plate.
10. Trimmed off extruded butyl tape that was pushed out and then caulked the edges and the top of the bolt heads.
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File Type: jpg 100_0632.JPG (186.5 KB, 3304 views)
File Type: jpg 100_0634.JPG (71.0 KB, 3419 views)
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Old 03-29-2011, 09:54 PM   #2
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Default Re: Orton DIY - Maxxair Fan Install

Hi Dave,

Excellent rightup.
I have the same fan but have yet to receive the van! Maybe it will arrive soon. I will copy your install and use the extra alloy plates too. Do you intend to paint the alloy plates?

Cheers

Ross
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Old 03-29-2011, 11:58 PM   #3
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Default Re: Orton DIY - Maxxair Fan Install

Will not paint the anodized aluminum. I have had anodized 80/20 on the bed flanges of my 2003 Dodge Dakota for 8 years and they look fine. If you bought a 144" WB van the magic number from centerline of second rib from back is 10 1/2" (centerline of second rib to centeline of 14" opening). The plywood frame will be against the flange of the second rib from the back and plastic fan ring will just miss center corrugation toward back. Attached is a PDF drawing of what I did. Should make it easy for you.
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Old 03-30-2011, 06:20 AM   #4
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Default Re: Orton DIY - Maxxair Fan Install

Ok thanks for the info. I did not realize that the flanges were anodized. That should be fine. Mine is an extra long (170) but I can still use the information. Gee I wish I had your cad package.

Cheers

Ross
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Old 03-30-2011, 03:55 PM   #5
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Default Re: Orton DIY - Maxxair Fan Install

Cad package: go to generalcadd.com and download free software so you can try it out. Free trial package is complete except you can not save drawings. If you like it buy it for $599.00. Nice easy to use program that is less costly and much easier to use than Autocad.
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Old 12-10-2011, 12:34 PM   #6
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Default Re: Orton DIY - Maxxair Fan Install

thanks for this Dave

I'm hoping to get a chance to install mine tomorrow.
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Old 03-31-2012, 10:02 PM   #7
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Default Re: Orton DIY - Maxxair Fan Install

Dave,
Thanks for all your write ups, they have been very helpful. I have a question...
I have a 170wb and wanted to put my fan toward the back where it would be over the bed, however that would require me to cut thru one of the ribs in the roof. When you did your install you had to flatten one of your ribs, right? Is this a bad idea to mount it here? How did you flatten your rib out? I was thinking of using a vice up there and squeezing it down. Thoughts?
Thanks. Matt
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Old 04-01-2012, 01:21 AM   #8
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Default Re: Orton DIY - Maxxair Fan Install

Quote:
Originally Posted by mattwiz View Post
Dave,
Thanks for all your write ups, they have been very helpful. I have a question...
I have a 170wb and wanted to put my fan toward the back where it would be over the bed, however that would require me to cut thru one of the ribs in the roof. When you did your install you had to flatten one of your ribs, right? Is this a bad idea to mount it here? How did you flatten your rib out? I was thinking of using a vice up there and squeezing it down. Thoughts?
Thanks. Matt
I think you can find a method for installing a fan toward the back here:
http://www.steynfamily.com/ultimate_...ing_van_02.htm


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Old 04-01-2012, 01:36 AM   #9
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Default Re: Orton DIY - Maxxair Fan Install

Need to be sure we are talking about the same thing. I did not touch a rib that supports the roof. The ribs are perpendicular to the length of the van and protrude down into van under the roof. I did flatten the end of the center stiffening corrugation (one of 7) that is parallel to the length of the van. I had to do that because I did not follow my own drawings. As I recall it was only about 1/2" at the end of the corrugation. I did not flatten a full height corrugation. Just the end of it. I do not think I would try to flatten a full height rib. The other 3 sides of my opening were flat. The steel is very soft and easy to flatten with a hammer from above and a steel block held under the steel. Be sure to prime and paint the damage. I assume you do not have a flat spot without corrugations in the area you want to put it. Maybe someone else has installed a fan where a corrugation is located and could enlighten us on how they did it. FYI I just leave the Maxxair partially open all the time. With the hole in the floor open I do not need to use the fan because I get the chimney effect of hot air rising.
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Old 04-01-2012, 05:30 AM   #10
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Default Re: Orton DIY - Maxxair Fan Install

Quote:
Originally Posted by mattwiz View Post
Dave,
Thanks for all your write ups, they have been very helpful. I have a question...
I have a 170wb and wanted to put my fan toward the back where it would be over the bed, however that would require me to cut thru one of the ribs in the roof. When you did your install you had to flatten one of your ribs, right? Is this a bad idea to mount it here? How did you flatten your rib out? I was thinking of using a vice up there and squeezing it down. Thoughts?
Thanks. Matt
I think this a 170 vs 144 issue difference.

I'm trying to decide how to put the maxxair in the back of my 170 right now. Flattening out the ribs on the roof seems possible but it would still not be completely flat. There is an area near the back that looks like it would allow the fan to site flat on the roof without flattening any ribs but I would need to cut out a section of the roof support. I'm thinking about doing that and taking thin wall square steel tube and making a square that would bridge the section that is cut out and give the fan something to mount to.
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