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Old 11-22-2009, 06:51 PM   #1
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Propane Water Heater Question

I would like my SMB to have the propane water heater and also a passenger-side ladder. Since I have to parallel park on highways for many surf spots, I had hoped to be able to install the ladder on the side that doesn't have cars speeding past it. From the pictures I have seen with this setup, the ladder will cover the exterior access panel for the heater. How inconvenient is this? Does the entire panel come off?
-Steve in LA
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Old 11-22-2009, 07:33 PM   #2
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Re: Propane Water Heater Question

I have my ladder on the same side for the same reason. My water heater is mounted where the spare tire would normally ride on a stock van (under). It works good.
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Old 11-22-2009, 09:57 PM   #3
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Re: Propane Water Heater Question

dual ladders IMHO is the ONLY way to go

ya aint gonna waltz around up top

makes it possible to secure/access all cargo
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Old 11-23-2009, 09:15 AM   #4
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Re: Propane Water Heater Question

Steve,

The Outside unit of the H2O heater will not hinder anything if the ladder is in the same side. The outside unit's cover unhinges in an open position. The only time you have to open it is when it's being serviced or to reset it. I have a video of the workings of the outside H2O panel, that I can post if you want.
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Old 11-23-2009, 09:19 AM   #5
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Re: Propane Water Heater Question

A ladder wouldn't impinge removal of the heater panel at all. For what it's worth, we love our propane heater and use it quite often!
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Old 11-25-2009, 11:08 AM   #6
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Re: Propane Water Heater Question

hey steveinLA - don't know where your at on your project, but I was set on a propane water heater too. My van, which is a 2010 V10 gas engine and an RB length, just arrived at SMB and I went there to take another look at some of the things i wanted and ask myself "why do I want that? Do I really need that?"

My main reason for wanting heated water was because i thought I would be taking showers every day when I'm out in boonies. I have since changed my thinking. If I was a surfer, however, I would take showers every day - not sponge baths like I plan now.

Upshot is that I deleted the propane H2O heater (I have propane furnace, tho) because it takes a lot of room. Did I say it takes up a LOT of room? In an EB van that isn't as big a deal.

BUT, I addded the flat plate because I want the option to take a shower whenever, and i can live with running the engine for a few minutes to get hot water. Not having a diesel engine I don't mind running the engine as much. Flat plate is freakin' small and goes outside over the frame.

So seriously consider a flat plate.

warholic
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Old 11-25-2009, 11:36 AM   #7
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Re: Propane Water Heater Question

I am pretty set on the propane water heater. I do surf often and a hot shower after a session sounds really nice. On the other hand, I have surfed this long with only a cold shower or no shower afterward and I have managed to survive. There are other reasons that I want hot water though, and not having to run the engine to get it is a big plus. The problem I have with more cargo space is that I tend to fill it up. I might as well fill it up with something useful.

Steve
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Old 11-26-2009, 11:58 AM   #8
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Re: Propane Water Heater Question

Even better at Mav's or Steamer Lane before you make the jump , nothing like 100 plus degree water inside of a well made Wetsuit prior to entering the water .
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Old 11-26-2009, 03:21 PM   #9
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Re: Propane Water Heater Question

I was stung by a stingray and was able to get access to hot water, thanks to the SMB! Man that felt good (not the stinger).
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Old 11-30-2009, 06:15 PM   #10
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Re: Propane Water Heater Question

Hello, I'm new 2 this forum but I can give some good advise as I have been doing custom conversions for 23 years. The water heater you want to put in the spot behind the ladder is a Surban sw6D water heater. It's a propane unit that has a door with pins (not hinges) that allow you to remove the door completly with no problem and will make the servicing of it easy and less expensive. You can get this unit in an electronic ignition as well as manual but we install the electronic units. (less hassel)

Hope this helps

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