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Old 08-22-2011, 12:56 AM   #1
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What does SMB do........

with Fords with roof air? I am really getting hooked on the idea of a penthouse top, but roof air is an absolute must for us, one big reason i bought a Ford, because the vents are spread throughout the roof and they aim and work so well. If Sportsmobile works around this, how? Do they add vents up the sides outside of the penthouse top cutout, or do they just convert cargo or non-roof-air models???

just curious, probably posted this in the wrong place, but i don't know where it might go.


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Old 08-22-2011, 07:53 AM   #2
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Re: What does SMB do........

My RB-50 has 2 AC vents routed above the center cabinet behind the sink. Barely visible in this picture.


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Old 08-22-2011, 12:08 PM   #3
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Re: What does SMB do........

For vans that had roof air SMB will place 2 or 3 air outlets at the rear most post of the driver's side just above the rear air unit. You can direct the outlets but you will not get the same effectiveness as an outlet coming down from the roof. That's what they did for me but my van is not built out anywhere as nicely as many others here.

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Old 08-22-2011, 01:31 PM   #4
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Re: What does SMB do........

I have the 2010 Ford E-250 regular body with A/C. I don't have rear A/C, but there is a rear fan switch on the dash. I'm still assuming there is a fan and air ducts somewhere, but I could be wrong. Putting this switch on "high" seems to help when the rear windows fog up. I looked around and can't seem to find where the air is coming from. SMB installs a skirt around the ceiling to cover the penthouse cut and provide attachment ledges for side panel walls. Would love to hear from someone in the know on the forum.
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Old 09-03-2011, 05:35 AM   #5
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Re: What does SMB do........

Scotty the typical Ford factory-installed rear air and A/C is placed in the left rear corner, just behind the wheel well. In a Club Wagon or Chateau configuration the headliner becomes a plenum with outlets placed assuming there will be several rows of seating. The dash mounted rear fan switch may have a detent throwing control of the rear fan to another switch in the rear area giving passengers control of the temp and air flow.

The entire heater and evaporator is located in a rather large package with huge air flow capability that even without the roof mounted outlets would comfortably heat or cool the rear area. If SMB were to convert an existing van it would be easy to re-direct that air flow; if ordering a new chassis for a stock build they're simply order the rear heater/AC option and perhaps fabricate their own duct system.

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Old 09-03-2011, 10:46 PM   #6
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Re: What does SMB do........

If that is the reason you went with the Ford van, this is my recommendation:


Here's why I say that:

My van has factory rear air. Here is a picture of the original installation:

I currently live in AZ. My kids almost died (almost not kidding) riding in the van in the summer.

Here are some pictures of the improvement during install:

It is a plenum that runs nearly the length of the van on the driver's side and has six vents.

Sorry I haven't taken a picture of the finished product yet. It is significantly better than the original solution. However, in the heat of the summer in AZ it is no kidding boarder-line dangerous to take my kids anywhere in the van if it doesn't get about an hour of the a/c running first.

So, if that volume of a/c is a requirement where you live, I suggest that cutting a big hole in the top of your van will be the single biggest mistake you could make for the daily usability of your van.
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Old 09-04-2011, 04:39 PM   #7
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Re: What does SMB do........

Is this about keeping the van cool while driving or camped? My Starcool keeps the van cool in the hottest temps when on the road. I've never had problems with inside driving temps being too hot, even when it's 110 out but it does a poor job on shore power.
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Old 09-04-2011, 07:06 PM   #8
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Re: What does SMB do........

I like the side plenum idea. If added to both sides, could be very comparable to stock performance. My van came with 8 ceiling vents, and biggest complaint is that even on low, it gets to too cold in the back unless all the vents are shut (which still allows some air by).
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Old 09-04-2011, 09:27 PM   #9
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What does SMB do........

From SMB West's perspective, no way to rout the factory a/c to both sides. Additionally, the flow is much less than I expected. Not sure why. Haven't had time to dig into it.
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Old 09-05-2011, 09:51 AM   #10
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Re: What does SMB do........

Got into this a little with redoing the house- length, bends and duct size and shape are all crucial for flow, bends are probably the worst. Even if you could route the AC to the opposite side it might not blow, even if you get the current side blowing it will just steal from that and possibly dissipate before reaching around to the opposite side. I'd go underfloor before going around the top, but I'm sure that has it's own issues.

and then
everything changed
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