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somewhereinusa

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In response to a private message about my heat, I'll answer here in case anyone else might like to see.

Since no one told me I couldn't do it this way. My boiler, hot water heater and 2 manifolds are 3/4 inch. The manifolds, supply/return are 1/2 inch out. There is a pump in each of the four heat loops that are controlled by the thermostats. All of the loops are1/2 pex. I routed the traces into 2 inch styrofoam, I think, on 3 1/2 inch centers. The spec for 1/2 pex calls for 4 inch but, I cheated a little. The pex is laying in the aluminum plates and the 3/4 floor is directly on top of that. The flooring is something I found in one of the RV surplus stores, 3/4 inch with some sort of plastic coating on both sides. I earlier posted a picture of the piping.

Here is after the floor was down.

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In process of laying the tubing.

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The manifolds, zone water pumps and relays.

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This is the Espar boiler, green box on left. The system is built basically like a automotive cooling system with a tank, gray box in center and a catch can. With overflow, that could have been much smaller. The marine water heater is behind the boiler. This compartment is above the engine in the rear.

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Since I had no idea how well, or if any of this would work. I also put a automotive type heater with blower in each zone. The driver compartment uses the original bus heater core as well as two smaller ones blowing on me. I am quite comfy down to about 10°. I haven't tested it any colder while driving. At below 0° sitting still, from a cold start I can get it nice and warm in about an hour at witch time I turn off all of the blowers and the floor will maintain.

D ick

 

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Richard, Terrific, nice attention to detail. What voltage does the heat run on, pump and relay voltage? I like the the looks of the pump set up but think it could be done with one and 4 thermal wax zone valves which operate from the same voltage as the thermostats. Knowing what I learned from building the cabin and the floor height constraints I might encounter in the Panther, have me thinking, how do I.... I think 3/8 pex would work as well, reducing a little of the added height to the floor. Trick would be to find the appropriate pump. The manifolds  could be placed under the fridge. The aluminum panels I have seen for 1/2 inch, wonder if available for the 3/8. Did you cover the floor entirely with them. Over all how much additional height did it add to the floor. The top surface of the floor, what is it? Does it conduct pretty well, warm to the feet? Just thinking outside of this box, with an air to air heat exchanger a fan and solar it could possibly be turned into a cooler in the summer during the hottest part of the day...a cool floor. 

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Greetings from Wisconsin. Sorry I didn't find this thread earlier in the week.

Welcome to the forum - you'll find that there are actually still a good number of members with bus conversions. Some DIY, some professional. All amazing and unique in their own way. At the rally in Gillette I walked the entire grounds looking for all the bus conversions, amazed at all the work that went into them. Ours was converted on a brand new shell by Custom Coach in 1974 and has been lovingly used as a motor home since then. It's pretty much still the way it looked in '74.

Love the way you've got yours set up and hope to see it in person some day soon.

If you want to see ours you can look here:

 

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26 minutes ago, rsbilledwards said:

Richard, Terrific, nice attention to detail. What voltage does the heat run on, pump and relay voltage? I like the the looks of the pump set up but think it could be done with one and 4 thermal wax zone valves which operate from the same voltage as the thermostats. Knowing what I learned from building the cabin and the floor height constraints I might encounter in the Panther, have me thinking, how do I.... I think 3/8 pex would work as well, reducing a little of the added height to the floor. Trick would be to find the appropriate pump. The manifolds  could be placed under the fridge. The aluminum panels I have seen for 1/2 inch, wonder if available for the 3/8. Did you cover the floor entirely with them. Over all how much additional height did it add to the floor. The top surface of the floor, what is it? Does it conduct pretty well, warm to the feet? Just thinking outside of this box, with an air to air heat exchanger a fan and solar it could possibly be turned into a cooler in the summer during the hottest part of the day...a cool floor. 

Well, some of my things are really inefficient. I bought the boiler and pumps new off of ebay for a VERY good price. But, they are 24V so I have to take 120VAC from the inverter and convert that to 24VDC for the heat. I don't know about 3/8 I've not seen the aluminum panels for that size. I used the aluminum in as many places I could get it. There are a few cold spots on the floor they are where there is no aluminum. The flooring is 3/4 plywood with a plastic coating on each side. Floor is warm in below 0° temps. The pex is laid into 2 inch styrofoam insulation and 3/4 plywood on top of that. I'm only 5' 8" and mumsywumsy is shorter, I still have plenty of headroom.

I've seen discussion of cooling that way before. Seems condensation might be a problem and may be more trouble to build for the cooling gained. I have mini split AC for that. Works quite well.

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23 minutes ago, richard5933 said:

 

If you want to see ours you can look here:

 

Richard great looking coach, I like the older ones that were converted and hardly used.  I'm in Genoa City doing event photography 3 or for times during the summer. 

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15 hours ago, somewhereinusa said:

 

Richard great looking coach, I like the older ones that were converted and hardly used.  I'm in Genoa City doing event photography 3 or for times during the summer. 

Let me know when you're in the area next - it would be fun to have our own little mini rally.

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Playing with walnut and my Shaper Origin.  Bad weather is starting to set in so I'm spending more time in the shop. I just finished some new LED light fixtures.

This is 43" long.

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Detail of fixture.

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Bracket detail.

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Next project is a makeup mirror/station cabinet for DW out of walnut.

D ick

 

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I had to google the Shaper Origin to see what it is. That is one neat wood working tool! Wood working and Metal fabrication are two (besides camping) of my favorite hobbies. 

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I'm having fun with it. The speaker grill on the first page of this post was done with it. I love working with walnut. The speaker grill started as a log in a back field. The wood for that one I sawed into a piece small enough to fit in my band saw with my chainsaw. I had to make a sled that would carry an 8 ft log to cut it into boards. The wood I have now was cut into boards for free at a local steam show. I got a lot of good wood out of what was left after the timber buyer got what they want. 

When did I ever have time to work for a living.   😎  As a cross country truck driver one year I only slept in the bed at home 39 nights. 

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Regarding instant hot water.

All I did on my first one 18 years ago was to put a tee at the faucet hot line which was the farthest from the hot water heater.  Had a valve then a mech temp gauge from my dark room, and a return line to the fresh water tank.  I would open the valve until the water reached 125 degrees then shut it off.  Had instant hot water at the shower and no wasted water or extra fill in the gray tank.  My current one is 12 volt solenoid and digital temp gauge.  Push the button until temp reads 125 degrees.

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