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Old 12-21-2013, 12:04 AM   #21
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Re: Heat Loss Measurements

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spenard
Want some pop-top insulation? I bought a set of 5-layer snap-in thermal blankets from Fanchers Upholstery http://fanchers.com/267/Vanagon%20Inter ... hermal.htm
for the Westy we keep in S Oregon cause it did not have a heater and installed them with the snaps provided. They work great! The company says they compare to R=8 insulation - which is about 8 times better than auto glass. The snap-in panels sized for the VW Westy are not very heavy and roll up in a bag the size of a large sleeping bag. The owner said he would fab some for my Sprinter Penthouse sprinter if I sent him a pattern. He also makes velcro attached thermal blankets for windows.
Thanks. What I've been looking for. I'll have to check out how bulky it is.
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Old 12-21-2013, 09:00 AM   #22
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Re: Heat Loss Measurements

Emailed Fanchers Upholstery about doing custom insulation for our Ford SMB penthouse. Here's their response. Anyone wanna be their drop off SMB (EB and RB)?

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Hi Steve

I have seen the sportsmobile at campgrounds in the past and thought it would be a great base vehicle for many of the products I make to transfer over.
Big issue is not having one to confirm attachment points and installation quirks to make it look and act like a premium product and not a hack job from China.

If your on a Forum and know or can find someone in South Eastern Michigan (close to Ann Arbor Michigan) Let me know OR let them know about me. I will entertain making them but I need the vehicle to make it on.
I have a few other items could make for it as well.
We usually offer a discount to the person who is willing to bring it over and leave it for about a week for patterning.

Hope this helps
Jonce

Fancher's Upholstery Inc.
www.fanchers.com
Ph: 1-734-483-0549
Fax: 1-734-483-0736
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Old 12-21-2013, 10:43 AM   #23
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Re: Heat Loss Measurements

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Originally Posted by REF
He will be writing me up a quote on the canvas in the next week or so, so I'll have to let you know pricing. As far as the windows and screens, they are not full removable zip outs, if that's what you meant, they are just like SMB windows but have the added insulated zippered fabric flap, making the windows fully sealed and insulated, really nice. Plus when its all zipped up, its nice and dark in there, no more waking up with first light, or being bothered by the lights when a stop at wally world is needed after a long jaunt! I can specify which of the windows I want to feature zippered screens, all or just the back one, I'm thinking I might want them all zipped, I like to be able to open them up sometimes to have the view or take pictures.
Zip out screens are really handy for photos or for chasing out the random fly that gets inside. I would really like to have a rear window, not to mention real shades and some insulation.

Mike
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Old 12-22-2013, 10:05 AM   #24
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Re: Heat Loss Measurements

Quote:
Originally Posted by Viejo
.....cut........

A few hours after dark I took the following readings, listed from warmest to coldest - worst to best insulation.

70 Inside Van

52 - Penthouse canvas
46 - Bare vinyl window
42 - Bare glass window
37 - Vinyl + SMB shade
36 - Van body panels
32 - Glass + SMB accordion shade
25 - Glass + Reflectrix
23 - Vinyl + Reflectrix
20 - Vinyl + Reflectrix + SMB shade

15 - 25 Other vehicles and surfaces around driveway.

I see two lessons here:

1. If you want to stay really warm, keep the penthouse down and cover your windows.
2. Reflectrix rules! - don't leave home without it.
This is great data, and also very helpful for someone like me who is on the fence on advantages vs disadvantages of penthouse roof versus high fixed tops. And also on amount of insulation and window types/sizes.
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Old 01-18-2014, 01:27 PM   #25
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Re: Heat Loss Measurements

I will start another thread so as to not hijack this one with stuff about the canvas top replacement from CCV.
Here's the latest before jumping over-no hard numbers yet Mike, but Derek estimates around $1500-$2000 for the insulated canvas with all the windows and zips.

My latest thought after seeing several of his tops-I may go ahead with a full replacement low profile top from CCV, which includes the new insulated canvas, his tops raise up much higher than SMB's, so more headroom when up on the bunk, are wider so more bed area, creates additional space above the cab for storage or a penthouse bed for Lake!, electric top, no more hucking that heavy thing, new LED lights and a much stiffer frame support.....downside.....$6200.
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Old 01-19-2014, 07:25 PM   #26
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Re: Heat Loss Measurements

I've been doing lots of study about what components to make up my walls. One thing that's been clear is these modern non-pourous, synthetic materials work their best when an interior side has an AIR GAP. This is apparently true regardless of the density of the product or lack thereof. I read a scientific article done in Canada about the effectiveness of reflective barriers, like Reflectix. The data showed they do very little to insulate against cold. Heat, you betcha, but not cold. The study found the reason so many people swear it works in cold is that something, anything, will improve R factor. The other point why people like Reflectix is it lets some light in.

Based on this, I wonder if buying some thermal insulated curtains off the shelf at a big box, re-sewing them, and hanging them up as a liner wouldn't be best? They could be sectioned so as to allow pulling them apart to see out a window. They'd hang from a cable we DIY in. This would provide the coveted air space. Cost would be relatively cheap and no sewing of the pop up tent required.

Yes, stowage might be a problem; but maybe flat folded under a mattress. This eliminates the issues of adding thicker material to the penthouse tent and increasing any folding difficulty. It's something to add to setup and decamping. That'd be worth it for warmth.

JC
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Old 01-19-2014, 10:46 PM   #27
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Re: Heat Loss Measurements

An air gap can reduce heat transfer rate because air has low thermal conductivity. However, providing an air gap will not do much if air is allowed to circulate through that gap. If air moves through gap then heat will transfer through convection.

In my case with a window van, placing curtains near windows does next to nothing. Cold or hot air will collect between the curtain and glass and then move down or up, transferring heat with it.

As far as I know reflective surfaces only work to reduce radiant heat transfer, so it's not so much about cold versus hot, but rather about large temperature differences which is when radiant heat transfer becomes significant.
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Old 01-20-2014, 07:22 PM   #28
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Re: Heat Loss Measurements

Quote:
Originally Posted by JCTex
I read a scientific article done in Canada about the effectiveness of reflective barriers, like Reflectix. The data showed they do very little to insulate against cold. Heat, you betcha, but not cold. The study found the reason so many people swear it works in cold is that something, anything, will improve R factor.

JC
Are there a few different types of Reflectix? The stuff I use not only keeps out light it does help a bit against cold which I assume is because of the 1/4" or more bubble barrier trapped between foil type surfaces. But I'm looking for a thin material that adds a little more insulation than the canvas alone. In fairly cold weather like 10*, you can feel the cold like three inches away from the canvas. Anyway I agree that something compact is what I'm after. I'd like to be able to find something that rolls up like the privacy curtains which doesn't need to be stored.
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Old 01-20-2014, 10:44 PM   #29
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Re: Heat Loss Measurements

Chance reminded me of the unavoidable physics of convection. I get it. My "coveted" air space must confine the air.

So, here's my current idea for making a sandwich to hang up and around the Penthouse walls.

I'm considering using for front and back of an outer skin some stuff I read about over in a "big box" RV forum. The users were raving about its effectiveness. It's like the "usual suspect" dept store curtain material on steroids: Warm Windows. The light ivory should keep the place from getting dreary.

Next, I think I'll add a "blanket" layer of something 1) synthetic, 2) fluffy and full of air, & 3) has a very high R factor in proportion to its thickness. For that, I drag out an old friend from my backpacking gear-up days. This stuff does all 3 in spades; and it can be bought in roll format: Thinsulate by 3M. This stuff can really trap the air.

The final layer closest to the Penthouse wall but still inside the tent will be a reflective something. I'll use Reflectix if I can't find a reflective thing any better. I tried to find the link to the Canadian scientific study about reflective bubble stuff vs the cold, but couldn't. It's on this forum somewhere. I got it during a thread talking about insulation in vans, generally. Very cerebral stuff posted by people way above my pay grade; but I sucked it all up. Yes, the Canucks did prove that Reflectix doesn't do much against the cold. They spent almost a page trying to explain why all the RV'ers out there will disagree w/ them. I can't recall all the why; but the bottom line is we're getting SO MUCH conduction transfer through glass and thin walls, that putting ANYTHING up there will impress us. Their point was reflective ain't nothin' but we can do better to keep out the cold. MY THEORY in using it is, like you said, it DOES contain some air in the bubbles and these panels will be used more, probably, to keep out the heat than the cold, something that Reflectix IS made for.

I'm thinking to attach the panels, I'll find some industrial adhesive-grade Velcro and put it on the headliner just above the wall and on the mechanism protection at the bottom. That'll give me a hard(er) surface to push against. I can sew the sacks with corresponding Velcro at top and bottom. I'm hoping this will keep the air between the walls and the "sacks" kinda trapped. I plan to attach the sacks themselves together with vertical Velcro strips sew on when the sacks are made (before stuffing). I'll put a panel at each clear window and open it by pulling on the Velcro.

I suspect this was TMI and worthless until you see me try it and give some pix; but I'm not there yet.

JC
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Old 01-20-2014, 11:03 PM   #30
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Re: Heat Loss Measurements

JC

A Space Blanket for one of the may work for the reflective layer. Thinsulate in the middle sounds like a good idea. I was also thinking of a wool blanket.
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