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Old 07-06-2020, 10:48 PM   #1
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1998 Carpenter Crown Cadet front and rear AC units

Hello everyone. My wife and I recently purchased this bus on a whim and have been obsessed with designing a floor plan for its imminent conversion. The registration describes this bus as a Chevy P30 and it does look to have a 350 small block engine in it. I have been trying to find service manuals for the vehicle but have not had any luck. I have been researching whether or not we should retain the 2 AC units. Can anyone comment on this and advise for or against this plan? Thank you in advance.
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Old 07-07-2020, 07:57 AM   #2
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Join Date: May 2009
Location: Columbus Ohio
Posts: 13,103
Year: 1991
Coachwork: Carpenter
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DTA360 / MT643
Rated Cap: 7 Row Handicap
the A/C is a personal preference.. for me its a no brainer.. its 2020 and i dont want to sweat like its 1949 in july so I make sure working A/C is in place.. others dont like the units as they impede their conversion plan.. or perhaps you arent planning on trips in the summer or are only short trips to the lake where you'll be parked all summer..



finding a service manual for the carpenter bus body will be near impossible as carpenter has gone out of business long ago.. the chassis as you say is a P30 and a P30 motorhome chassis manual (ive seen them for sale on Ebay) is going to be a close fit for your bus chassis..
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Old 07-08-2020, 10:05 PM   #3
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Thanks cadillackid. I had planned to remove both the front and rear AC units for these reasons: 1) I am not a fan of the fact that the engine needs to be running for the AC units to operate, 2) I am certain they are not energy efficient, and 3) the condensers take up quite a bit of space. Do these reasons seem rational and worth the effort of removal? Thanks in advance.
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Old 07-09-2020, 06:41 AM   #4
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Join Date: May 2009
Location: Columbus Ohio
Posts: 13,103
Year: 1991
Coachwork: Carpenter
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DTA360 / MT643
Rated Cap: 7 Row Handicap
in a short bus if you insulate it really well you might sort of kind of stay cool while driving with a camper A/C on the roof..


the A/C unit efficiency is actually good for road A/C but they arent designed for being parked.. they are for driving and keeping it nice N cool in heat waves like we are having now.. a camper A/C is designed for being parked.. if you were to install a couple mini splits thyen run a generator to use them while driving you would have much less efficiency than the road A/C..



having no idea how yours is set up, you may be able to keep the front one and relocate it or build yourself dash A/C..


ultimately there isnt too much effort to removal as long as you have the freon sucked out first.. the big thing is how much you want comfort while driving? I was out in one of my busses yesterday.. outside temp was 96 heat index 102, that ice cold air blowing in my face sure felt nice as I went through the stop N go traffic of a construction zone.. I can only guess the guy in the older motorhome next to me with the little slider window open wiping the sweat off his face wasnt as comfy...


I personally like to be comfortable while driving.. others chase the nice weather so high power A/C amd heat isnt as big of a concern.

-Christopher
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Old 07-13-2020, 11:46 AM   #5
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Thank you for the response Christopher. You brought up a great factor that I had not considered, which is cooling the vehicle while driving. After some thought I am planning to keep the front unit and remove the rear one, then install a mini-split during the build process. One thing I would like to get your opinion about: I can see on the dash that for the rear AC unit to operate, the front one needs to be turned on. This implies that the rear is dependent on the front. Have you run into this configuration before? My concern is that I remove the rear unit and the from one will malfunction. Any clues you can provide me, even if to simply direct me to a place where I could find an answer, is much appreciated. Thanks in advance.
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