2009 Kodiak 5500 Duramax Crew Cab Ambulance Conversion Project

#31
finally figured out the picture issues...will have a few more to follow.
These pictures are from the box 1 mods including the instant HW heater, the 12.2 gal ASME propane tank, the pump and accumulator and the 30 gallon water tank as it stands right now. Still not sure weather I want to try to mount the tank there or inside the box.

I also got the light bar removed from the top of the cab. Will be installing a cargo roof rack and hook up some led lights to it for some added visibility.
LP tank must be oriented as designed. If it is a horizontal tank pretty sure it must be horizontal or it will not work. Not that you do not know that.. Just noting for others who may not realize your pics are sideways. Also not sure what box you refer to when you say may mount in box. It can NOT be mounted in camper box. Very dangerous and illegal. Two it must be vented proper. LP sinks therefor vent must be at zero bottom.

The Instant heater.. You need to insulate it.... Have read several stories of folk who have gone thru 2 or 3 of them in a winter cause they freeze and burst the inner plumbing. Might be better to install that inside the Ambo/camper box. This will also solve the issue with wait time for hot water to get to faucet. Just mount it near the faucet most used. Or loop it as mentioned in next post (#32)
 
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#34
was referring to the 30 gal water tank, trying to figure out the best way to fit it inside the ambo our inside "box 1" as I understand they are labeled commonly. I did just find a 30 gallon tote style tank that has a port at base and measures 24x19x22 which will fit perfectly on the shelf above the propane tank
As far as the propane tank goes. I mounted it in the bottom of the "box 1", making a shelf with some aluminum angle and box tube. Its well vented at the base. I may cut out a larger port hole and screen it in for added venting The ASME tank is designed to me mounted on the exterior, usually to a frame rail or something, but I didn't have any space for it, what with all of the compressors tanks and such in addition to its size...tough to place.

For the HW heater itself, freezing was a concern but I don't know that I will be using it too heavily in the winter just yet, so I'll roll the dice and keep it mounted where it is. Worse case, I'll wrap it with a heating pad or something to keep it warm when using it in colder temps and winterize it properly. I just didn't want to clutter up the inside living space with anything more than I needed. The wife's not in to the off grid stuff just yet- have to ease on into that one, so most places we stay will have shore power and will pipe in some heat. I am also going to spray foam the entire living space, so that should help keep some heat in. will figure out a way to insulate the box one area also.
Thanks Geo- I appreciate your input...you have a lot of experience that I have pulled from your other posts. all feedback is welcome!
 

Cowpig

new guy + questions
#37
Will LP distributors fill it in the box? One thing I've read in other threads is how difficult some dealers/personnel are to deal with - -whether the tank can be filled safely or not. I'd prefer the hard mounted asme tank but have been planning to do a large portable DOT tank(s) just for ease of dealing with idiots who are only used to filling that style away from a vehicle.

I'm thinking you may have a challenging debate in your future .. especially with the exhaust directly below (some LP always leaks when filling)
 
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Cowpig

new guy + questions
#38
Pretty sure that is not the case.
It isn't, but to loop the tankless you have to add a smaller water heater into the loop. From reading that link sounds like you put the tankless on a timer to ‘pre-boost' the loop then the small conventional heater can keep it at that temp for a while (?). Not a good fit for an rv imo but I'm still figuring a lot of things out so just my .02
 
#39
It isn't, but to loop the tankless you have to add a smaller water heater into the loop. From reading that link sounds like you put the tankless on a timer to ‘pre-boost' the loop then the small conventional heater can keep it at that temp for a while (?). Not a good fit for an rv imo but I'm still figuring a lot of things out so just my .02
ahhh..... the label on the diagram just called it a mini tank. Looking at the actual link I see now it is a mini water heater.

Still though... I think a loop is what you need but without a tank. Loop it so it allows water to heat up as it circulates thru the tankless more than once.. Loop would bypass the faucet and go right back into the heater..... you let it loop for minute or two then hit the switch to the valve that will shut the bypass loop and starts sending water to the faucet instead.

basically create below but since the tankless wont have hot water input option you would Tee it back into cold water input with a check valve in place.



Here is basic idea but used with a typical RV hot water heater. Maybe this plumbing method better?

UPDATE: did some digging and as supsected... someone makes a recirculating set up to add to tankless systems to avoid that wait and water wasting.... see belolw
https://www.fasterhotwater.com/Tankless circulation pump.shtml
 
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java

Expedition Leader
#40
Dumping back into the cold becomes difficult however as you need a second pump, and you need to be able to overcome the water pump in an rv type install (unless you run a secondary line back to the tank or pickup side of the water pump) I think looping the output of the heater back to the input side may work, but it depends on line pressures and if you can get it to flow with one pump.

In residental applications we you a pump between the hot and cold that forces a small amount of the hot through to the cold side every few minutes to keep the supply there. But again no pump is making the water pressure in that system.

Sorry for the hijack :)
 
#41
Will LP distributors fill it in the box? One thing I've read in other threads is how difficult some dealers/personnel are to deal with - -whether the tank can be filled safely or not. I'd prefer the hard mounted asme tank but have been planning to do a large portable DOT tank(s) just for ease of dealing with idiots who are only used to filling that style away from a vehicle.

I'm thinking you may have a challenging debate in your future .. especially with the exhaust directly below (some LP always leaks when filling)
oh the spiral of thought I have been on... After the stunning realization that the propane tank was rife with unforeseen complications related to filling and the fact that I was not able to move the exhaust like I had planned, I abandoned the ASME tank. I couldn't find a suitable place to mount it under the box or to the cab without it hanging down too far and still being able to access it for filling. I decided to switch some stuff around and use some 20# tanks to connect to the HW heater and to the stove. I am currently in the process of clearing out the second compartment on the drivers side that contains all of the inverter/converter system and wiring, panel box for the generator and the relay for the AC and will move that into the large box #1. Pictures to follow.
 

java

Expedition Leader
#42
oh the spiral of thought I have been on... After the stunning realization that the propane tank was rife with unforeseen complications related to filling and the fact that I was not able to move the exhaust like I had planned, I abandoned the ASME tank. I couldn't find a suitable place to mount it under the box or to the cab without it hanging down too far and still being able to access it for filling. I decided to switch some stuff around and use some 20# tanks to connect to the HW heater and to the stove. I am currently in the process of clearing out the second compartment on the drivers side that contains all of the inverter/converter system and wiring, panel box for the generator and the relay for the AC and will move that into the large box #1. Pictures to follow.
You can get remote fill kits for the ASME tanks if that helps you at all.
 
#43
Dumping back into the cold becomes difficult however as you need a second pump, and you need to be able to overcome the water pump in an rv type install (unless you run a secondary line back to the tank or pickup side of the water pump) I think looping the output of the heater back to the input side may work, but it depends on line pressures and if you can get it to flow with one pump.

In residental applications we you a pump between the hot and cold that forces a small amount of the hot through to the cold side every few minutes to keep the supply there. But again no pump is making the water pressure in that system.

Sorry for the hijack :)
Just found out there is a company that makes an RV product just for looping the hot water heater. Works with tankless too.
 
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#44
Got busy this weekend. Removed the 12v hoseline unit and the roof components.
Question- for those of you that removed the unit, I had lines to and from the box up under the hood, connected to (I'm not really sure what). If I just remove the lines and cap it, disconnect the electrical connections- will I be good on that?
Any one looking to buy a 12v Hoseline unit out of my rig?
Also have an LED light bar (White and Red LED with that little opticon function that cheats the red lights for sale)

Also, cut a bucket full of wires out and pulled the original electrical panel to do some rewiring and clean it up a bit. I suck at posting pictures but I will post up shortly once I get them all shrunk down. Ended up deciding to remove all of the emergency flashers and the module and will cover the 10 holes with an aluminum patch and paint to match. will use the 2 scene light holes on each side and some ones on the back and replace with some LED spot light- testing a few methods for installation.

I am currently mapping out the new home for the electrical system (12V and 120) and remouting the inverter and associated connections.
 
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