My 13' Scamp A/C in closet install - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-23-2006, 11:16 PM   #1
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I completed a A/C install in my 13' Scamp that uses one opening for both intake and exhaust, instead of two separate vents & modifcations to the top of the A/C unit.

The width of the little Fridigidare 5000BTU A/C allowed a 2" gap along both sides of the unit. By doing some creative use of Alumimum ducting and Alumimum "Speed" Tape, I created a baffle that lets cool air in, & hot air out, all from one outside vent.

To avoid flooding my wheel well with condensation, I also made a collection pan using a paint roller pan that matched the footprint of the unit, which drains out through the wheelwell,and set it on the wheelwell amid more Alumimum sheeting to seal the bottom of the closet cavity.

Take a peek at my Album and see how I spent a weekend.

Bob H (ConwayBob)
Conway SC.

http://pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/ki4hee/album...h6LimEBtjMYuTUr
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Old 03-24-2006, 05:59 AM   #2
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Very cool AC installation . And nice photos of the steps
Now for some hot weather to test it . Tom Trostel
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Old 03-24-2006, 10:41 AM   #3
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Excellent! Thanks for sharing!
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Old 03-24-2006, 08:23 PM   #4
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NICE!

Beyond admiring the drip-pan and the great efficiency of your design, I was wondering if you cut that opening in the shell? If so, what did you use - what type of saw / blade?
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Old 03-24-2006, 10:54 PM   #5
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NICE!

Beyond admiring the drip-pan and the great efficiency of your design, I was wondering if you cut that opening in the shell? If so, what did you use - what type of saw / blade?
The gaping maw on the side of the trailer was already there when I bought it. It was very poorly done.

I did cut 2 1/2" out from the bottom of the closet door opening, using a Dremel Tool with a side cut, (rotozip) bit. Also cutting two radius curves into the exterior of the opening. I had glassed in two corners of the opening to put in the radius.

The Outside Vent Cover was installed the week before, replacing a hideous Vent Cover that was "glued" on with silicon sealant.

I have a photo album that shows this work in the Scamper Group on Yahoo. (I guess I ought to post that here as well...)

BTW, much thanks for the complements...

Meanwhile you can see it in the Yahoo Group's photo library under "ConwayBob brings a Scamp back to life"
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Old 03-25-2006, 01:55 PM   #6
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Bob, Ditto on the NICE job. I plan to do an AC install like this. I purchase a small 5000BTU unit and some Aluminum sheeting. It's way cheaper and lighter to go this route over the factory roof mounted air. Thanks for the "How to" Post & Pics.
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Old 03-25-2006, 05:06 PM   #7
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Bob, Ditto on the NICE job. I plan to do an AC install like this. I purchase a small 5000BTU unit and some Aluminum sheeting. It's way cheaper and lighter to go this route over the factory roof mounted air. Thanks for the "How to" Post & Pics.
Thanks for the kind words Evan, I hope this mod works...I'd hate to have to cut another hole in the side of the trailer to get intake air.

Getting the unit cooling air and a good exhaust was the #1 priority, next to providing a drain for condensation. Actually, I'm told that current window a/c's use the condensation to make the heat exchange coil more efficient. If this works correctly I shouldn't have a lot of moisture to deal with. Getting the unit set with a slope to the back is very important to let collected moisture get picked up and thrown onto the coils, but to get the unit to perform as designed you got to let it get outside air in and hot air out.

I specifically looked for a A/C that was 12" wide or less so that I could get air into both sides. That allowed me to do this mod. Any larger and I would have to get air in from above.

BTW, you may not have the option of a rooftop A/C. Unless your Scamp was built with additional supports for a roof mount unit, the weight of a roof unit could overstress your roof. You'd have to put in additional bracing yourself.

Good Luck on your project.
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Old 03-26-2006, 03:24 PM   #8
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I'd hate to have to cut another hole in the side of the trailer to get intake air.

Getting the unit cooling air and a good exhaust was the #1 priority, next to providing a drain for condensation.
Any larger and I would have to get air in from above.

BTW, you may not have the option of a rooftop A/C. Unless your Scamp was built with additional supports for a roof mount unit, the weight of a roof unit could overstress your roof. You'd have to put in additional bracing yourself.
Bob, Your design should work fine. You may not have the efficiency of totally seperate intake and exhaust openings, but with 5000btu in a small volume of a 13ft scamp, it will be sufficient. Your right about the overstressed roof. If you don't buy the factory air you must reinforce the roof to support the added weight. I have figured the weight for my closet AC install to be: 45lbs for the unit, 10 pounds for the support shelf and ducting, 3 lbs for the vent door. Should be under 60lbs. I have heard the the total roof mounted systems run over 100lbs, counting the unit, the heavy fiberglass cover, the added structure strengthing to support the AC etc. The cost for factory AC was something like $650. Living in the northwest we seldon use AC so it wasn't worth it to spend the dough. However I estimate my cost to do a closet mounted unit will be less than $250 and 2 weekends work. Wow I read your AC door replacement. That sure came out nice considering what you started with. Keep the Mod "How to's" coming.
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Old 03-28-2006, 09:37 PM   #9
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Nice job, Bob. I did something similar last summer before I took the Scamp to muggy Tennessee. I could learn from your attention to separating the hot and cold air flows, and I could have used something better than cardboard and towels. Still, it worked great. I used a dish drain pan to drip the condensate outside the shell, with the (vacant) fridge vent door propped open.

My installation wasn't complete until I added a small AC fan that sits on the floor and blows the cold air straight up to head level. That canceled the big disadvantage of a closet-mounted AC, vs. the roof mount. I prefer the closet mount for cost and weight reasons already mentioned, plus it doesn't decrease the interior headroom or disturb the smooth lines of the roof. And when I'm headed for cool climes, it's a snap to remove the AC and ride that much lighter.
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Old 03-29-2006, 07:18 PM   #10
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Nice job, Bob. I did something similar last summer before I took the Scamp to muggy Tennessee. I could learn from your attention to separating the hot and cold air flows, and I could have used something better than cardboard and towels. Still, it worked great. I used a dish drain pan to drip the condensate outside the shell, with the (vacant) fridge vent door propped open.

My installation wasn't complete until I added a small AC fan that sits on the floor and blows the cold air straight up to head level. That canceled the big disadvantage of a closet-mounted AC, vs. the roof mount. I prefer the closet mount for cost and weight reasons already mentioned, plus it doesn't decrease the interior headroom or disturb the smooth lines of the roof. And when I'm headed for cool climes, it's a snap to remove the AC and ride that much lighter.
Hey! I like that idea! A temporary installation. I've thought of making the space above the A/C into a equipment bay since a standard 18"wide rack system will fit perfectly. It actually may be possible to extend the rack down to include the A/C unit. That would allow total interchangability inside the closet space. Wow!

This A/C had the highest priority of all that I want to do. It won't be long before 89 deg.,89% humid South Carolina evenings come on full strength. Without a A/C that Scamp would be a sweatbox.

Thanks for the comments & THANKS for the inspiration.
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