Orton DIY Transit

HarryN

Well-known member
Since you are having fun with this, I will keep throwing in additional wild conjecture ideas to kick around.

Make the inner tent using electric blankets.

Your battery is nominal 225 amp-hr x 12 volt lifeline. If we dedicate 50% of its usable capacity to heating the tent, then:

(225 amp-hrs) x (50% usable) x (50% dedicated to tent heating) = ~ 50 amp-hrs.

(50 amp-hrs) x (12 volts) ~ 600 watt-hrs.

(600 watt-hrs) / (12 hrs) ~ 50 watts of heating

Not sure what an electric blanket uses.

12 hrs gives it a chance to pre-warm the inner air a bit before going to bed.
 

Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Since you are having fun with this, I will keep throwing in additional wild conjecture ideas to kick around.

Make the inner tent using electric blankets.

Your battery is nominal 225 amp-hr x 12 volt lifeline. If we dedicate 50% of its usable capacity to heating the tent, then:

(225 amp-hrs) x (50% usable) x (50% dedicated to tent heating) = ~ 50 amp-hrs.

(50 amp-hrs) x (12 volts) ~ 600 watt-hrs.

(600 watt-hrs) / (12 hrs) ~ 50 watts of heating

Not sure what an electric blanket uses.

12 hrs gives it a chance to pre-warm the inner air a bit before going to bed.
What I have found out is the tent idea does not work. Hard for me to believe but have done enough testing to prove that temperature inside my insulated tent about matches the temperature inside the van outside of the tent. My last test was just boxing in the volume around my head. A space about 27" wide x 18" deep x 30" high. Temperature was still the same inside small tent as outside the tent. So the only value of the tent idea is making inside the tent quieter.

I have improved the method of warming the sleeping bag. Was using a Electro-Warmth $100 bunk heating pad. Have had two of them fail so looked for a better solution. Found a $30 rear seat heating pad that is better made and fits better under the sleeping bag. It has two heat levels. First put it in centered under the bag but that was too hot on the low setting. Moved it between the two self inflating camp pads that I use for a "mattress". That helped reduce the heat level. Then moved it to the head end of the platform but still between the two camp pads. That helps keep the head warm in addition to the balaclava. The problem is not keeping the body warm, it is keeping my head warm. Might reduce the seat heater output by adding a cycling timer to cycle the seat heater power on/off.
 

Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Did some further experimenting this week on two night trip to Monterey. The original 6 gallon shower water heater tank is still installed in the van. Have abandoned that for heating water and now use a 14 quart Igloo cooler with a Sous Vide cooking appliance to heat 3 gallons of water. Takes 20 minutes to heat the shower water to 100 degrees and 15 amp-hrs of battery capacity. Longer and more power to heat the water to 140 degrees for cooking in the cooler.

Experiment was using the Sous Vide water heater. Normally the 14 quart Igloo cooler is used as my waste basket by adding a garbage bag. So removed the garbage bag and converted the cooler to a shower water heater by adding the Sous Vide machine, the water pump and fabricated cooler covers. Pumped water out of the shower water tank into the cooler. Put a steak in a zip lock bag in the water. Using the vehicle powered inverter to power the Sous Vide Machine cooking the steak in 140 degree water as I drove. Arrived in Monterey with steak cooked for dinner. Had dinner and then waited for water to cool down to 100 degrees and used the water to shower. Used some of the remaining warm water to do the dishes and pumped what was left back into the SS shower water tank. Removed the water heating stuff and reinstalled the garbage bag to return cooler to its normal garbage can use. I like using the cooler for multiple purposes. Process worked very well. If I did not want a shower all the water could have been pumped back into the shower water tank to be used again.
 

Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Fill with hot/warm water, use as pillow:
Actually the balaclava works very well and is easier than heating water. Did consider making a "U" shaped 3" PVC pipe container that fits against the van wall around my head but again that would require heating water. Next move will be to buy a thermal long sleeve shirt to wear to bed.
 

Matt Foley

New member
Actually the balaclava works very well and is easier than heating water. Did consider making a "U" shaped 3" PVC pipe container that fits against the van wall around my head but again that would require heating water. Next move will be to buy a thermal long sleeve shirt to wear to bed.
Or maybe just get a warmer sleeping bag with a hood. Or even just a sleeping bag liner.
 

Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Or maybe just get a warmer sleeping bag with a hood. Or even just a sleeping bag liner.
Actually I am very close to having a workable solution. What I am doing works well but now trying to refine it so it is even better. Has taken some time trying different things to avoid having a noisy Espar. Biggest surprise was the insulated curtains to make a inside the van tent not working.
 

glasseye

Well-known member
Excellent, boys.

Now, if you can just figure out a way to get outta bed in the middle of the night to pee, I'll be a happy boy.

In CO, at 8000 ft in April, I once had the most shrivelly pee in human history. -15C
 
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Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Excellent, boys.

Now, if you can just figure out a way to get outta bed in the middle of the night to pee, I'll be a happy boy.
That's easy. Do not get out of bed. Just pick up the Quik chocolate container, lean on your side and do your thing without getting out of your 12 volt heating pad heated bed.

In the morning pick up the remote start button while still in bed to start the engine. The night before set all the dash controls for max. heat and set the selector switches to select the vehicle powered inverter to power the 750 watt electric heater under the bed. Wait 15 minutes for the van interior to warm 10 degrees before getting out of bed. Helps to have a gas engine you can idle and the remote start option. :thumbup:
 

Matt Foley

New member
I've mastered standing up and partially unzipping my sleeping bag while staying (mostly) inside it to take a leak long, long ago.
 

slem

Member
Actually I am very close to having a workable solution. What I am doing works well but now trying to refine it so it is even better. Has taken some time trying different things to avoid having a noisy Espar. Biggest surprise was the insulated curtains to make a inside the van tent not working.
CA, warmer than most of the Nation has been cold in my insulated Sprinter. I purchased some large movers quilts at Harbor Fright. I hang them, attach with 18" magnet bars also purchased at Harbor Freight. The propane heat generated condinsation on all metal surfacs. Hint, crack open the roof fan vent and 2 front windows.
/COLOR]
 

MsNomer

Member
That's easy. Do not get out of bed. Just pick up the Quik chocolate container, lean on your side and do your thing without getting out of your 12 volt heating pad heated bed.
Since God was so blatantly unfair in the peeing department, at least he gave us women hot flashes, which conveniently usually coincide with the urge to pee.
 

glasseye

Well-known member
Looks like my image posting skills are nearly as bad as my night peeing skills . Sorry about that. :bash:
 

Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Congrats Dave, great video.
Thanks to Kirsten Dirksen. She does a great job of editing and filming. No cost to me and far better than I could do. Hopefully it will be useful to others. Certainly not what everyone would want because we have different requirements but there may be some useful ideas for someone else.
 

PapaBear60

New member
Miss Piggy (thanks Orion for the name) arrived at dealer today. Will post info here on things that may be useful to the members of this forum. I have a list of about 100 changes/improvements that will be made to the Transit conversion. Some of those should be of value to others. Thought this would be a better place to post the info. than the conversion thread or the danger zone.:thumbup:

**********************

Added 20151017 to work like a Sticky:

Dave has created his own website. It looks to be the same high quality as his conversion work (as would be expected). I for one will miss Dave's input at Sprinter-source. We hope that he continues to check in here on occasion.

Graphite Dave's New Transit Conversion Web Page is here:
http://ortontransit.info/

Safe travels. vic
When one attempts to go to Dave's website, we get a page that says the server cannot be reached, or something similar depending on which browser one is using.
 

Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
When one attempts to go to Dave's website, we get a page that says the server cannot be reached, or something similar depending on which browser one is using.
Does not work for me this morning. Has worked until now. Will try to find out why. Thanks for the post.
 

Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
When one attempts to go to Dave's website, we get a page that says the server cannot be reached, or something similar depending on which browser one is using.
Try again. Did not work for me about 6:40 (PST) this morning (5-31-20) but tried again about 6:45 and it was again working.
 

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