Caris the Gypsy – The Bus – Air Conditioning

speaking of keeping things cool…

the playa gets hot…

and caris, well, he can be a bit sun addled and it’s ok 🙂

… but his companion sasha…

http://www.l7.net/myspace/images/sasha.jpg

well, she’s a bit more arctic wolf than prairie dog, so we got her some air conditioning…

http://www.l7.net/myspace/images/ab-ac-01.jpg

this unit pulls 607 watts, and was the most efficient we could lay our hands on locally, for less than $rape…

http://www.l7.net/myspace/images/ab-ac-02.jpg

frigidaire has a great reputation, and this one has a timer, so we can schedule it, and a remote, so he doesn’t have to climb up to fiddle with it…

all in all a good choice…

*especially* considering where it’s going…

http://www.l7.net/myspace/images/ab-ac-03.jpg

this panel was a pain in the butt to get off, and i have no idea what it was originally for, but i know what i’m going to use it for 🙂

since the location is up high, where the air is hottest, and cold air falls to the floor, it’s the best place to mount it in the bus…

convenient that…

http://www.l7.net/myspace/images/ab-ac-05.jpg

so first comes the base frame, made out of bed frame of course (if you have any laying around, i’d love to take it off your hands) …

http://www.l7.net/myspace/images/ab-ac-04.jpg

then we weld it in place…

http://www.l7.net/myspace/images/ab-ac-06.jpg

looking good so far…

http://www.l7.net/myspace/images/ab-ac-09.jpg

the back wall of the bus is 1 1/2″ square box tubing where that hole is, so the fleet engineer is welding it down like he means it… (thanks chris 🙂

and then come the side braces, cross drilled for lightness an aerodynamics…

just kidding, the holes were already there 🙂

http://www.l7.net/myspace/images/ab-ac-07.jpg

note that the hole is wider than the brackets, so the side braces angle out a bit, giving a bit of side to side reinforcement as well…

here’s the left side going in…

as you can see, we’re building it to be tough.

last thing we want to do is jettison 50 lbs of steel on the freeway after hitting a big bump…

http://www.l7.net/myspace/images/ab-ac-08.jpg

so then i load tested it…
(bright lights are in my eyes)

http://www.l7.net/myspace/images/ab-ac-11.jpg

once the welding was finished, some flap disc work, and we put the unit in…

http://www.l7.net/myspace/images/ab-ac-10.jpg

yes, that’s a pair of 200 watt solar panels on the roof…

then i added a couple of jbolts and a cross brace to keep the ac unit in it’s frame, and called it a night…

in testing, the solar panels here in washington, in 95 degree heat, could keep the inside of the bus at 70 degrees, all day long. basically, it discharges the batteries at about 25 amps when the compressor is on, and it charges at 20 when it is off…

at the end of the day’s heat, the batteries were at 12.8 volts, and that’s very livable.

if not, he’s still got the 12 volt generator we built for him here: modern day gypsy, v.009 to bulk charge the batteries with… (generator puts out way more than the ac draws), but the idea here was to be able to run it just off of solar. so far it is a success, we will see what lies in store for caris at burning man…

i think 2 more panels and another charge controller would make me happy 🙂

to be continued…

-stone

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