1 pound LP bottle

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1 pound LP bottle

Postby 48Rob » Sun Mar 12, 2006 9:28 am

Hi All,

I did a bit of experimenting to find out how long a 1 pound bottle will last.
I have an 11 pound tank mounted on the hitch to provide gas, but also installed a fitting that allows a 1 pound bottle to be used when the big one runs out.
Of course this will never happen to me... :D

Starting with a full 1 pound cylinder, at room temperature (68 degrees, as was the trailer) the results were as follows;

Stove burners (7000, or 8000 BTU)

1 Burner 3 hours, 26 minutes

Water heater

Main burner, 26 minutes (to bring water to temp)

Water heater pilot

11 hours, 32 minutes (pilot maintains temp)

And that was it, empty. :cry:

I realize that not many have a water heater, and none of this was very scientific, but...

Anyway, looks like one can expect to be able to cook using two burners at 30 minutes each (per meal) for 5.5 meals or roughly two days per cylinder.

Rob
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Re: 1 pound LP bottle

Postby kirtsjc » Sun Mar 12, 2006 9:44 am

48Rob wrote:Hi All,

and none of this was very scientific, but...



Rob



But.... still VERY useful as your test was practical personal experience, not some 'guvment mumbo-jumbo technical paper that can't be understood even by the people who "writted" it.

Thank you for the research, I have saved your text for reference!

:applause:
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Postby Ira » Sun Mar 12, 2006 10:09 am

Rob, what kind of water heater?

I had planned on getting the Hot Water Demand, which is a totally different kind of system, but I'm curious what you have installled.
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Postby apratt » Sun Mar 12, 2006 10:10 am

I think that gave a good reference point. I have been debating if I wanted to set my teardrop with a 11# or go with the !# bottle. For me I will now go with the 11# tank.
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Postby 48Rob » Sun Mar 12, 2006 11:03 am

Apratt,


We often take a vintage two burner stove that uses a 1# bottle, works well and is light and easy.

An 11# will get you by for more than a weekend, closer to a two week vacation.

A 5# is obviously lighter, and for some, more practical.

Either way, having a large bottle with the means to also hook up a small bottle seems the only way to go...

Rob
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Postby 48Rob » Sun Mar 12, 2006 11:32 am

John,

You're welcome!

Ira,

It is a 6 gallon Atwood LP unit.

It is pilot fired, which is good or bad depending how you look at it.

The electronic models use no gas until the thermostat tells it to heat the water.

The pilot model uses the pilot flame to maintain the temp.
Works well too!
Once up to temp, the burner does not come on until you draw enough water off (add cold water) to trip the thermostat.

I ran it for two weeks on pilot only.
The burner came on once, for about 15 minutes after I enjoyed a 6 minute shower.
That was nice!
I have the shower head set to 1/2 gallon per minute flow, but can adjust up to 1.25 gallons per minute.
Plenty of time to get clean, and a couple minutes to just enjoy the water.
All told, I used about 5 gallons of water (after the basic shower, I turned up the volume) I was going to measure exactly how much water I used, but I forgot to close the holding tank valve, and it all just ran away :cry:

I'm quite pleased with the system, I have a 21 gallon fresh water tank, so I'm good for a long weekend.

I did a lot of research into the type of water heater, and plumbing system that would best serve me.

The portable water heater units are okay, but pay very close attention to the gallons per minute at stated max temperature.
Boils down to hot shower = a dribble.
Lukewarm shower = light stream.
Cold shower = good volume.

Besides that problem, each time you want hot water, you have to set the whole rig up, then wait...not for me...

The 45# pressure my water pump maintains makes a huge difference between a dribble, and an enjoyable shower.
The shower head is also very important!
Get a water saver that mixes air with the flow.

The "on demand" water heaters are the next step up.
They are permanantly mounted and plumbed, like a traditional system.

Their downfall is similar to the portable units, in that gallons per minute determines everything!

A small efficient unit usually can't keep up with the volume most folks are used to having for a shower, etc.
Well, it can, but the water doesn't have time to get hot enough...
The slower the flow through the coils, the longer it has to absorb the heat...faster it goes, the less heat it absorbs.

I have nothing against these units, I think they're great, but trying to fit one capable of doing the job in a small trailer is difficult.
The good ones are large, need a good sized exhaust port, and are anything but inexpensive.

If I had to do it again, I would save my pennies and buy a gas/electric unit, as opposed to the straight gas unit I did buy.
Since most camps have electric anyway...
Then again, over the life of the camper/Rob the gas savings may/may not account for the much higher dual W/H?

Rob
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Postby Ira » Sun Mar 12, 2006 11:42 am

Points well taken, but in a TD my size, space is EVERYTHING. That's why that Coleman unit is so attractive to me. A really tiny footprint, the "tank" will be placed elsewhere, and you just connect the shower head when you want to useit for shower.

Granted, if I lived in a cold weather climate, I would sure want a heavy flow of really hot water. Down here, most of the time, you can get away with lukewarm.
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Postby angib » Sun Mar 12, 2006 12:05 pm

And, Rob, if you want to have heating inside your trailer, here is a guy who's adapted this sort of water heater to make a near-silent 12v+propane space heating system:

Image

RV Hydronic Heating System

I love the 'hydronic heating' description - this is the standard heating system for houses in the UK, but I've never heard it sound so advanced!

Andrew
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Postby 48Rob » Sun Mar 12, 2006 12:23 pm

Ira,

I struggled with that choice for a long time...

The portable units work well (if you aren't in a hurry) are inexpensive, and have good reviews.

What finally swayed me was taking a very close look at my everyday routine.

Sitting around in my easy chair of an evening dreaming about how things would work when I was camping, turned out to be a bit different from what my reality is when I wake up in the morning.

I'm the sort who can't stand to be without a shower in the morning.

Climbing out of the trailer while scratching my head and looking a bit rough, into a new day, good, bad, or raining...to set up a portable shower rig just doesn't seem so appealing when viewed in the light of a new day.

Thats just me though, 20 years ago a river or lake made a perfectly good bath. :D
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Postby 48Rob » Sun Mar 12, 2006 12:29 pm

Andrew,

Thanks! :thumbsup:

I like it!

When I built my garage some years back, I installed a couple hundred feet of 3" plasic tubing in the ground next to it.

The idea was to pump the shop air into the tubing, where the earth would cool it, and then push it back into the shop.

Worked good for the first couple days, then the ground water filled the tubing :oops: so much for good planning :cry:

The next plan was to use a pump to push the ground water through a heater core from an old car, with a fan to move the heat.

Never did get around to installing the system...maybe after I get this trailer done...

Rob
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