The Astroliner

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The Astroliner

Postby crpngdth2001 » Wed Jan 23, 2019 4:13 pm

I’ve seen some of the pre-owned Espar heaters go for sub $500 on eBay. Rebuildable, durable. That’s the route I’m going to go when I build. I can’t justify $1,000+ on one either. Still watching for a “steal”.

There’s Webasto pre-owned units as well. I’ve heard decent reviews of the Russian Planar models as well, good price new.


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Re: The Astroliner

Postby Atomic77 » Thu Jan 24, 2019 10:10 am

crpngdth2001 wrote:I’ve seen some of the pre-owned Espar heaters go for sub $500 on eBay. Rebuildable, durable. That’s the route I’m going to go when I build. I can’t justify $1,000+ on one either. Still watching for a “steal”.

There’s Webasto pre-owned units as well. I’ve heard decent reviews of the Russian Planar models as well, good price new.


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Here's one I've been looking at. The price seems right. Just wondering if anyone can tell me about how they work, fuel consumption, air intake, mounting location, etc. I see they come with silencers. So they are noisy? Enlighten me fellow builders...

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Re: The Astroliner

Postby rkanz » Thu Jan 24, 2019 10:18 am

https://youtu.be/9YthaCqkMOs


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Re: The Astroliner

Postby bdosborn » Fri Jan 25, 2019 7:41 am

There's a Facebook page that has a lot of info:
Chinese diesel vehicle heaters
I have the real deal, an Espar, and it works well.
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Re: The Astroliner

Postby Atomic77 » Fri Jan 25, 2019 4:16 pm

bdosborn wrote:There's a Facebook page that has a lot of info:
Chinese diesel vehicle heaters
I have the real deal, an Espar, and it works well.
Bruce


I'll check it out. Thanks Bruce. What's the price tag on an Espar?

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Re: The Astroliner

Postby bdosborn » Fri Jan 25, 2019 7:44 pm

I got mine used on eBay about 8 years ago for $350. I haven't looked for one lately so I don't know what they go for now.
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Re: The Astroliner

Postby Atomic77 » Sat Jan 26, 2019 7:16 pm

bdosborn wrote:I got mine used on eBay about 8 years ago for $350. I haven't looked for one lately so I don't know what they go for now.
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The thing that I see about these, and maybe yours isn't as bad... But the whole idea of one for me would be to heat while boondocking when electricity isn't an option. It looks like they draw 9-10 amps, at least for awhile and then 1-2 amps sustained. Without at least a solar charger for the batteries, that seems like a pretty substantial 12V draw. Would be interested in hearing thoughts on that.

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Re: The Astroliner

Postby bdosborn » Sun Jan 27, 2019 7:53 pm

Mine draws 20 amps for 30 seconds while it's starting up. After it heats up the cabin, which takes about 15-20 minutes or so, it throttles back to low (0.8 amp-hrs). It will shut itself off and on as needed all night long so it doesn't draw as much as you might think. But yeah, unless you've got a PV array or a generator to charge your battery, it probably draws more than you'd like for a multi night camping trip. I picked this over a catalytic heater as it doesn't put water in the cabin while it runs (and doesn't kill you if it breaks). I looked at forced air propane heaters and didn't like how much current they drew and how loud they were. I would pick the Espar again if I was to do it over again.

My Espar


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Re: The Astroliner

Postby Atomic77 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 11:24 am

Well, it's all very interesting Bruce. Thanks for the input!

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Re: The Astroliner

Postby featherliteCT1 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 7:06 pm

Here is the Planer unit I am thinking about buying. I have been debating about whether to purchase a cheap $150 Chinese unit and run the risk of control board failure after a short period of time vs. buying this Planer, which from my research is comparable to the $850 Espar in quality and parts availability.

https://heaters4you.com/for-areas-less- ... ar-2d.html

The only thing I do not like about these diesel heaters is that the exhaust noise emitted outside the cabin is a little high for my tastes. Here is a link to a video where the noise level outside of a van generated by a Webasto diesel heater can be heard. At the 9:00 minute mark the guy stops talking briefly so that the the sound emitted outside can be heard. Other than this video, I have not found a video that lets me hear the sound emitted outside the cabin when the unit is mounted inside the cabin.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nNtqXRCyPic
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Re: The Astroliner

Postby bdosborn » Mon Jan 28, 2019 7:30 pm

featherliteCT1 wrote: The only thing I do not like about these diesel heaters is that the exhaust noise emitted outside the cabin is a little high for my tastes.

I bought the silencer after I ran mine for the first time; it was louder than I thought it would be. Luckily it's pretty quite on the inside and I can't hear mine at all when its on low. It's not obnoxiously loud and I've never had anyone mention it who camped by me. I might worry about tent campers but generally everyone is in a camper when its been cold enough for me to use it.

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Re: The Astroliner

Postby Atomic77 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 8:20 pm

So, is there any other options? Something like these only in a Propane version? Seems propane would be a much better fuel option.

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Re: The Astroliner

Postby featherliteCT1 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 8:34 pm

Here is a link to the Propex propane units ... sell for around $750 ... 1.6 amps is a lot of current compared to the diesel heaters around .8 amps as Bruce posted.
https://faroutride.com/propex-install/
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Re: The Astroliner

Postby crpngdth2001 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 8:35 pm

Propex HS2000 is the same concept in propane. Pricier than the Chinese knock offs and the Planar by quite a bit, cheaper than a Webasto or Espar.


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Re: The Astroliner

Postby bdosborn » Mon Jan 28, 2019 9:05 pm

If I had the room, I would look at a traditional RV furnace over the Propex, replacement parts are a lot easier to get I imagine. We put one in a buddies popup and he had no complaints, other than battery drain. He could barely get a single night off his battery.
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