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Old 11-26-2019, 09:39 AM   #1
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: Norfolk, VA
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Chassis: Integrated CE S
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Where to install coolant heater

So my chinesium coolant heater finally arrived in the mail yesterday, and I test fired it today. Looked good, sounded good, but I didn't let it run long enough to fully heat up because the exhaust pipe started burning the grass. Thankfully it had rained last night.

Next step is mounting it, but I am running into an issue. My original idea is mounting to the frame just behind the driver's seat (under the floor, obviously). However, when I hold a cutout of the approximate size of the heater up to the frame, I run into 2 issues. Firstly, only one row of bolts will line up, top or bottom. That's easily overcome. Problem 2 is the real kicker:

Those are the air lines running along the bottom of the cutout. The exhaust is on the bottom. I can almost see losing air pressure on the freeway now...
I could try to reroute them or push them out of the way, but at some location that exhaust will get near the plastic.

So I turn around and BAM:

That's the skirt of the bus just opposite my intended site on the frame. Sizing and location look good, but I'm not sure how comfortable I am with the idea of mounting this to the skirt. I'm mostly concerned about the structural integrity of this skirt, less so the potential theft.

Does anyone know of a better location? Has anyone mounted something structurally to the skirt of the bus, or know whether or not it would work?
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Old 11-26-2019, 09:40 AM   #2
Bus Geek
 
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Show us a picture of the heater.
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Old 11-26-2019, 09:45 AM   #3
Skoolie
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PNW_Steve View Post
Show us a picture of the heater.
Heater in the box:

Doggo for scale (I concentrated on something that wasn't her for 5 minutes, so she had to make sure I hadn't forgotten that she exists):


It can be flipped left-right, but I don't think rotating it or flipping up-down is a good idea.
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Old 11-26-2019, 09:48 AM   #4
Bus Nut
 
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My Webasto lives in the engine bay but I have a rear engine bus. Usually on most conventionals it's mounted on the drivers side of the bus under the skirt.
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Old 11-26-2019, 09:58 AM   #5
Skoolie
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WIbluebird View Post
My Webasto lives in the engine bay but I have a rear engine bus. Usually on most conventionals it's mounted on the drivers side of the bus under the skirt.
Yeah, my idea of where to mount it basically came from the diagrams and pictures of the webasto scholastic. Unfortunately, that one comes with a protective box and is designed to mount on the rail in the first picture, but mine does not come with a protective box (I can fabricate one easily enough) and is taller than the scholastic.
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Old 11-26-2019, 10:29 AM   #6
Bus Geek
 
Join Date: May 2016
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WIbluebird View Post
My Webasto lives in the engine bay but I have a rear engine bus. Usually on most conventionals it's mounted on the drivers side of the bus under the skirt.
+1

If you are able to make room in the engine compartment I would go that route.

I have seen a few CE's with a Webasto mounted in the skirt behind the drive axle.
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Old 11-26-2019, 10:36 AM   #7
Bus Nut
 
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Also keep in mind that it needs to be in a spot where you can easily tap into the coolant loop and the bus tank if you're going to be tapping into that for your fuel source.
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Old 11-27-2019, 04:25 PM   #8
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
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Engine: DT466
So I did a "test fit" on the frame that we were originally talking about, and it looks workable:

That's "mounted" with 2x 3/8" bolts, grade (something that's not . I wanted to keep the holes minimal if I decided to put it elsewhere.

The issue is that the bottom row of bolts doesn't line up with the frame, so I'm going to grab some flat iron from HD and run it from the top to bottom bolt holes, and add an 3/8" bolt in the middle of each. That way the flat iron will have 2 points to secure to the frame of the bus, and the heater frame will also have 2 points of contact.

The issue with the air hoses will be solved by moving them, since I hadn't noticed they were zip tied to the frame just to the left in my original picture. So when I build a protective box for the coolant heater, I'm also going to add in a flat piece of metal that will hold the hoses back and out of the way of the exhaust.
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Old 12-02-2019, 03:52 PM   #9
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
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Engine: DT466
So here's what I ended up doing. I installed it in the spot where everyone suggests, but because it was a bit large, I ran flat iron vertically from the top to bottom mounting holes, and bolted it to the frame in the middle. So the top is through the mounting frame, flat iron, and the vehicle frame, the bottom is mounting frame and flat iron, and I added extra holes through the mounting frame in the middle. Then, using angle iron, leftover sheet metal from skinning, some rivets, and my very limited skills with metal working, a slapped together a frame.

Mounted, with the access panel removed:

Panel in place so it's "fully" protected:

View from the front:

And finally, crouched down on the outside. Only the muffler is sightly exposed:
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