Reflectix insulation - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-02-2005, 03:16 PM   #21
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[b]Here is some info on R values.
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Below is a list of the R-values of some materials for a 1" thickness. Multiply this value by the actual thickness to get the insulating value of other thickness. For example, wood has an R = 1.25, so a 3/4" sheet has an R around 1.25 * 0.750 = 0.94.

Add R values when materials are sandwiched. For example, a wall of 0.25" of plywood backed by an inch of Styrofoam would have a total R value of (1.25 * 0.25) + 5.3 = 0.3 + 5.3 = 5.6. A floor made up of a 0.25" plywood sheet, two sheets of 0.75" Styrofoam, and a 0.5" plywood sheet, would have an R value of (1.25 * 0.25) + (5.3 * 0.75) + (5.3 * 0.75) + (1.25 * 0.5) = 0.3 + 3.975 + 3.975 + 0.6 = 8.85.

<blockquote> * Aluminized bubble pack, R ~ 27 based on 1" thickness
<blockquote>o Actual Refletix product is 5/16" thick. According to the lable on the roll my hardware store has out: R = 8.3 roof, 14.3 floor, 9.8 side
o This is so good, I'm skeptical. Two sandwiched would only be 5/8" with a roof R = 16.6, floor R = 28.6, and side R = 19.6.
o SolarShield makes a similar product but I don't have data</blockquote>
* Rigid Urethane Foam, R = 7
* Styrofoam sheet, R = 5.3, k = 0.19
* Fiberglass, R = 4
* Carpet, R = 2.6
* Vermiculite, R = 2
* Wood, R = 1.25</blockquote>
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Old 12-02-2005, 05:18 PM   #22
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It's interesting how, when we discuss Reflectix in the context of other materials, we keep coming up against this credibility thing.

BTW, I've always tended to think in terms of U-factor, the reciprical of R-value. The units of R-value is square foot * deg (dt) * hour/ Btu. So just what is that mean ? U-factor seems much more intuitive. Mike's R-8.85, above, would become

0.116 Btu/hour per square foot per deg(difference across the assembly) To use this, if you had 100 square feet of that R-value and it was 70 deg inside and 30 deg outside you'd have

0.116 x 100 x 40 = 464 Btu/hr loss through the surface(s).

Windows, doors, surfaces with higher or lower R-values need to be area weighed, but this is the general idea.

Now, isn't that easier?
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Old 12-03-2005, 09:01 AM   #23
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The following is a government site for insulatiing materials... government insulation facts The highest for the urethane foam is R9/inch which is accomplished using a reflective foil in addition to the insulation. Performing a internet search on the topic gave me quite a few references to sprayed on urethane insulation products which could certainly have application to RV insulation. The part that is confusing is the reflection of radient (infra-red radiation) and conduction (transfer of molecular energy). The bubble foil works great reflecting radient energy like heat from the sun but doesn't work worth a flip preventing the transfer of energy from one molecule to another (it could if thre were a vacuum in the bubble... I actually evaluated a packaging constructed like this and it works great BUT you don't want to know the price$$$
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Old 12-09-2005, 07:44 AM   #24
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Alright, lets see if I can make practical sense of all this reflectix data.

1. It is over-rated as an insulator but better than nothing.
2. It's greatest value is as protection against condensation.
3. It's cheap, and it works as a placebo.

Do I have it right?
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Old 12-09-2005, 08:16 AM   #25
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=============================================
Alright, lets see if I can make practical sense of all this reflectix data.

1. It is over-rated as an insulator but better than nothing.
2. It's greatest value is as protection against condensation.
3. It's cheap, and it works as a placebo.

Do I have it right?
=============================================
I think I would add a #4. works great as far as reflecting radient energy which is extremely important in the summer to prevent solar heating inside the trailer (for us this is probably more important than it's use as an insulator since we live in the SE).

From a practical standpoint the trailer is slow to warm up in the sun during the summer and the walls are noticably cool/cold when temperatures get down into the 20's in the winter.
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Old 02-22-2006, 12:14 AM   #26
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so with all of this great information, what is a good insulator for the trailer?
mine has no insulation, and i'd like to add something to the walls to make those cold nights a bit nicer. it would be nice if the insulation had a nice look to it as well.
is there anything out there that is affordable, looks nice, and actually works?
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Old 02-22-2006, 11:02 AM   #27
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Erik -- I saw this thread several months ago. It seemed, and still does, like the real-life issue is circled, circled and circled, but no one went in for the kill.

We had a Compact Jr many moons ago, with no insulation. It was a pain with all the condensate dripping. The only way to help that situation was to pop the top up and leave all the screen covers open. Worked fair in fair weather, but when it was cold that was another story.

Moved up to a 1960 Streamline. All aluminum construction with spun fiberglass house type insulation between inner and outer skins. The ribs also had some thick rubber tape to squelch the cold bleed-through.

Next a 1970 Avion, similar to the Streamline, but the insulation is poured in foam.

Now a 1984 Scamp with the ensolite stuff.

From practical experience, the Streamline was best, followed by Avion, followed by Scamp with Compact getting a zero. I expected the Avion to be better than the Streamline, but it apparently didn't have the rubber tape on the ribs, because it drips profusely at the ribs. It also seems to be quite a bit harder to heat.

Interestingly I consider the Scamp to be just marginally below the Avion. The ensolite does a pretty good job. The real problem with it is it's crinkly surface. In our neck of the woods, western Washington, the mildew gets into those crinkles and it is a real problem cleaning it up. Clorox does a good job, but does me in, in the process. A smooth surface that you could just wipe down would be great.

I would be very aprehensive about the 'rat fur'. I don't know how you would clean the stuff. To put this in context, my beautiful wife was born and raised in Viet Nam. She insists on cooking three square meals a day, complete with saute'd vege slices and meats in fish sauce and all the rest of the culinary delights from that country. Without a doubt this contributes overwhelmingly to the growing of mildew and other baddies in our Scamp.

So what might not work out for us would be fine for another.

Check out the blue camper foam sold at Wal-Mart and others. It is flexible, fairly inexpensive and sold in sheets 2ft X 6ft. I remember a roll being priced about $7. I would expect the blue could be changed to something else with a good latex paint. If you wanted more shine, perhaps enamel could be applied over the latex. You'd just have to try it. If it works out good, let us know. If it doesn't work out, let us know.

We are a knowing goup on this forum. We just don't know it all, but would like to know more.
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Old 02-22-2006, 03:06 PM   #28
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You may also want to check out these websites from our Helpful-Links page:
Ensolite

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Old 02-22-2006, 05:14 PM   #29
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This is not from personal experience, but maybe someday it will be. I hope.

BIGFOOT rated for 30 below camping. Now you're talking.

http://www.bigfootrv.com/traveltrailers/index.html
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Old 02-22-2006, 05:20 PM   #30
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I pushed the relectex up as far as I could in between my Burro walls,closet and upper and lower cabinets. Camped last fall for a week. It got fairly cold and with the ceramic heater felt ok. The rear windows radiated cold though so I cut some refectex to wrap around the sides and back. Excellent! very cozy, but I couldn't see out.
My guess is that would do for us down to about 20-25 degrees, any lower than that I couldn't pay the wife to camp.

We have camped in Yellowstone in July with night temps down to 32 without insulation and it was fine with just the ceramic heater. I guess that wind has a lot to do with it too.
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Old 02-22-2006, 05:47 PM   #31
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Quote:
This is not from personal experience, but maybe someday it will be. I hope.

BIGFOOT rated for 30 below camping. Now you're talking.

http://www.bigfootrv.com/traveltrailers/index.html
Hmmm!!! Wonder what that means. People camp all the time in cold weather. Proper clothing and a good sleeping bag are the important things. A good snow cave will maintain about 40F. Therefore I would guess that at -30 the inside of the Bigfoot will be close to 40
Now I'll go hide.
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Old 02-22-2006, 07:39 PM   #32
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Foam insulation between the walls ( looks like about 1 1/2 inches or so), tanks are in heated insulated area, thermopane windows and 30000 BtU heater.

Might be more like 70 degrees.

Granted they are much heavier than a regular egg ( and pricier) .
Casita people seem to be happy , I remember Charles was comfortable and he's a big winter camping buff.

I don't recall any Scamp owners talking about it.

It doesn't really matter though, the wife would never go in that weather.
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Old 02-22-2006, 09:20 PM   #33
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Foam insulation between the walls ( looks like about 1 1/2 inches or so)...
According to both Bigfoot and various owner reports, the insulation is 1.5" expanded polystyrene foam bead board. The Bigfoot specs claim R8, presumably for the complete wall or ceiling structure, since 1.5" bead board will be something less than R7.5.

I have slept in a tent trailer with overnight temperatures just hitting freezing, with no heat source (we had one, just didn't bother starting it...), so I agree that usable and warm are not the same thing.

Our Boler B1700 has the typical insulating lining for that model, which is a lighter (and probably much less effective) foam than the classic Ensolite. A 1500 W heater did not need full power to keep it warm enough at just below freezing, but the temperature was quite uneven and I would certainly prefer much more insulation (plus better windows like those current Bigfeet).
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Old 02-25-2006, 09:46 PM   #34
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I just ran across your posting on insulation.

I have a '87 Casita and Christmas of '04 my brother-in-law moved to Muleshoe, TX. I took a week vacation to go and wire his new 60x80' aluminum fabrication and paint shop. The weather turned COLD! , 6 to 10 degrees daytime. He did not have a house yet, so I stayed in my Casita. The cold would flow through the walls and drift across the bed like the windows were open. I had a electric heater going and the gas range burner on low ( carbon monoxide detector installed ) to add some heat to the interior. The cold would still flow across the bed, so I had to run a fan mounted near the ceiling to mix the cold and warm air. This stopped the cold drifting across the bed.

My brother-in-law was so appreciative he offered to do a make over on my Casita. So, Christmas of '05 we stripped the upper cabinets and lower cabinets out, except for the refg section and sink/range section. We took all the old foam backed carpet out and installed the foil double bubble insulation on the walls and them covered it with auto upholstery carpet and a outside paint job. It looks like a new rig again and I'm exceted to see how much difference the foil double bubble is going to make. I will test it in the hot summer heat , I hate COLD and hope to never be in those low tempts again.

Just had to share,

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Old 02-26-2006, 07:43 AM   #35
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Welcome, Don!

There's only one thing we like better than to hear about modifications and fix-ups and that's SEEING them. Do you have any pictures? Why don't you start your own thread HERE. Simply click "New Topic" on the upper right hand side and tell and show us what you've done to your '87.

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Old 02-26-2006, 08:03 AM   #36
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I have not taken pictures. But, I will get some in the near future and post them.

Thanks for your reply,
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Old 02-26-2006, 04:23 PM   #37
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In about Oct 2004 we stopped to visit friends over night in a place called East Barriere Lake about an hour from Kamlops,B.C. Where they live is fairly high above the river valley and and the temp. dropped to almost -20F (-8C) and it frozze the water hose and our sink drain etc. Most of the night I kept a small cube ceramic heater going and we were quit comfortable.
Our Boler is lined with Ensolite and I was impressed with the fact that it kept the inside reasonable. Also there was not a great amount of condensation other than some frost at the bottom of the windows. Desipte what some people may think about Ensolite, I think it does a pretty fair job of insulating.
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Old 02-26-2006, 09:02 PM   #38
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Con,

I have been reading about the insulation of the Boler and I'm very impressed with the construction and the insulation of this maker. I wish the Casita was constructed as well. As I said in my post I froze in mine at 6C degrees, I had ice on the inside window seals. Hopefully the new foil double bubble will help, but I know it is not as good as a foam board insulation.

I live in the Texas Hill Country for a reason.

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Old 02-26-2006, 10:24 PM   #39
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Don,
I have yet to see a Casita up here in British Coliumbia so I can not make a constructive comment on the good or bad points of them. Before we bought our Boler we borrowed a friends TRIPLE E ( looks almost identical to the Trillium) It was lined with Ensolite the same as the Bolers. If I was going to replace the lining I would certainly redo it with Ensolte as it is allready textured, colored and acts a sound proofing and insulation. I don't know the actual R value of it but it sure would not be fun in the cold without it. All that been said, anything that is light weight and acts a air barrier and sound proofing is better then next to nothing.
There has been some suppliers of the Ensolite added to the "Helpful Links" pages if you want to pursue that type of liner. I seem to remember a thread before the site was hacked about a few people who replaced thier Ensolite liners.
Donna might be some help there, Where are you Donna?
I was lucky, Our Ensolite is almost mint condition and the people we bought the Boler from had found some replacement "T" mouldings for the joints.
Keep us posted on how yours works out and what problems you run into.
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Old 02-27-2006, 12:47 AM   #40
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I look around on the net concerning the construction of the Boler and I don't think it is the one I'm think about. I saw a cut throught section of one of the trailers, it had fiberglass top / 1/2" plywood / thick white foam insulation / plywood / fiberglass construction. This one sure looked solid. The person could walk on top of this trailer.

How quick I forget. It was some where in this link.
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