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Old 02-03-2015, 02:39 PM   #21
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Another thing to keep in mind is where your electrical, water pipes and drains will go. Try to make your connections where you can get at them later for repair. For instance, my shower stall is a few inches from the back and side walls to make a chase way and all my connections are accessible in one way or another. The one connection you build in will, sure as hell, be the one that fails.
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Old 02-03-2015, 03:39 PM   #22
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Wow thanks for the pictures , that's what i had in mind for the grey water. The blue barrel sound to me like a good idea, cheap and easy to find!

So basically the rod go through the bus floor ? And when you want to empty the tank, you need to go under the bus?

Also, did you jacked your bus to do all those plumbing or you just ''slide'' under? That's could be problematic for me if i can't go easily under it.


I also keep in mind the advice for the emplacement of the plumbing and wiring. It's a long-time project, I plan to buy the bus next year so now i'm now more in the design and configuration of the space.
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Old 02-03-2015, 04:50 PM   #23
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Join Date: May 2010
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Engine: 7.3L Powerstroke
Rated Cap: 19
Plenty of room under these buses to work. Not like the huge ground clearance that the school buses have, but no need to jack it up for most projects.

The Eldorado Aerotech buses have a plywood floor so it was easy to drill through and bolt the tank supports above the floor. When I insulated the floor the insulation boards and the 3/4" plywood flooring cover the rod ends so I cut access holes in the plywood so I can get at the nuts if I ever need to.
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Old 02-03-2015, 08:30 PM   #24
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That will simplify the work under the bus !

I will pursue my drafting and planning, especially for the plumbing and electricity and will probably be back soon with many questions


Wait! I already got a question! Is it possible to run only with solar power + engine to recharge the battery or i must have a generator? I don't plan to have TV on any electronic device. The main electric equipments would be the pump, water heater, a small fridge, Led light, 1-2 power outlet and stove hood. The stove and the heater would probably run on propane.
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Old 02-03-2015, 08:52 PM   #25
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Join Date: May 2010
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Coachwork: Eldorado Aerotech 24'
Chassis: Ford E-450 Cutaway Bus
Engine: 7.3L Powerstroke
Rated Cap: 19
To Figure your power requirements you'll need to decide what appliances and lights you'll be using and for how long each day, then install deep cycle batteries to power them for the day/weekend/whatever.

You get max battery life if you don't discharge more than 50% so in general you install twice as much battery capacity as you'll need between chargeings.

Air conditioning requires shore power or a generator, it won't run off batteries. If you're boondocking for long periods a genny is nice for recharging.

In short, 150 watt solar may be all you need or it may be totally inadequate, it depends on how power hungry you are.

Led light - .5 amp DC
RV furnace fan - 4 amps DC
Roof vent fan - 2 amps DC
Water pump - 4 amps DC
Water heater - .5 amp DC
Propane alarm - 5 amps DC per day

Refrig - could be run on AC, DC or propane
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Old 02-03-2015, 09:08 PM   #26
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I started to list all the electric item i will probably install and i realize that i don't have a lot of appliance and that my electricity needs will not be too big ( i read on many RV blogs the ''normal'' electricity need for a small Rv and its was pretty high )

So basically what i understand is that i need my average total of amp per day ( or amp hours not sure...) for each appliances then double the total to know how many battery i need?

With the total of amp and the total of battery amp, will I be able to determinate which solar panel i need?

And should recharging the battery with the alternator be considerated as a good recharging way? I don'T know how efficient can be an alternator ...!
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Old 02-04-2015, 10:24 AM   #27
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We're set up to be able to charge the house batteries from the alternator if need be, but I prefer to wait and plug in at home to charge them through the power panel three stage battery charger. The Progressive Dynamics battery charger won't boil your batteries dry over time like some other chargers can.

Here's the power panel we installed:

http://www.progressivedyn.com/all_in_one_pd4000.html

Ours bus is set up like your plan with minimal power requirements. Most outings We'll draw down the batteries by only ~10% so I usually wait until we get home to charge the house batteries. Your 150 watt solar panels would give you 10 to 12 amps of charging and will certainly extend your battery power with no need to plug in at home.
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Old 02-08-2015, 11:43 AM   #28
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Which program are you using to design ?
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Old 02-08-2015, 04:08 PM   #29
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Sketchup on Mac but I had drawn the floor plan in 2d on AutoCAD before.

The final rendering was done on Kerkythea.
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Old 02-08-2015, 06:08 PM   #30
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On another subject, i start to plan the plumbing and since i live in a place with temperature under zero ( C not F!) 4-5 months by year, I start to think that i will probably have issue with the pipes that go under the bus, so outside...!

I don't plan to use the skoolie in the winter but i'll store it outside during the winter so it can be an issue.

Is there are way to insulate them? Or some special pipe to put?
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Old 02-11-2015, 03:37 PM   #31
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Anybody for an awnser?
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Old 02-11-2015, 08:32 PM   #32
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Rated Cap: 19
I put our water tank and plumbing inside the bus mainly because it was easier but also to make it easier to keep it from freezing if we're winter camping. About half of the drain line is inside also. I set our plumbing runs up so they'll be easy to drain with the middle of the runs higher than the ends so water drains back to the tank on one end and to the water heater on the other. Pex pipe is freeze resistant but just the same you don't want to leave it full of water in winter. It stretches lengthwise instead of splitting.

Another way to go is to use RV antifreeze but it has to be flushed out before using. I'm not sure which way is a bigger pain.

You can use heat tape and insulation on the exterior pipes if you'll be able to plug in.
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Old 02-11-2015, 09:56 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bancdeneige View Post
Wow thanks for the pictures , that's what i had in mind for the grey water. The blue barrel sound to me like a good idea, cheap and easy to find!

So basically the rod go through the bus floor ? And when you want to empty the tank, you need to go under the bus?

Also, did you jacked your bus to do all those plumbing or you just ''slide'' under? That's could be problematic for me if i can't go easily under it.


I also keep in mind the advice for the emplacement of the plumbing and wiring. It's a long-time project, I plan to buy the bus next year so now i'm now more in the design and configuration of the space.
Yes... Those blue tanks look great for black, grey and white tanks. I had no idea attaching them was so simple. I'd been thinking of having to get brackets welded.

How big are peoples tanks? One thing I looked at was a pressure tank but its big and holds only 20 gallons.
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Old 02-11-2015, 10:42 PM   #34
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Join Date: May 2010
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Rated Cap: 19
My grey tank is only 15 gallons but it works fine for us. If I had wanted more capacity I would have had to go with a rectangular tank because the round barrels hang lower for the same gallon capacity. The full sized schoolies have a lot more space underneath for tanks and other fun stuff.

The bigger tanks weigh a lot more when full and may need a more robust mounting. My small tank weighs about 140 lbs. full so the threaded rods are plenty but 50 gallons of water alone is 425 lbs.
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Old 02-12-2015, 05:56 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roach711 View Post
I put our water tank and plumbing inside the bus mainly because it was easier but also to make it easier to keep it from freezing if we're winter camping. About half of the drain line is inside also. I set our plumbing runs up so they'll be easy to drain with the middle of the runs higher than the ends so water drains back to the tank on one end and to the water heater on the other. Pex pipe is freeze resistant but just the same you don't want to leave it full of water in winter. It stretches lengthwise instead of splitting.

Another way to go is to use RV antifreeze but it has to be flushed out before using. I'm not sure which way is a bigger pain.

You can use heat tape and insulation on the exterior pipes if you'll be able to plug in.

All my plumbing for fresh water will be inside the bus since the tank should be under the bed.

The only matter was the plumbing for the grey water but i don't plan to use the bus in cold temperature but it will be convert and store during the winter!

I will take a look to Pex pipe and the antifreeze!


And how much time do you last with a 15 gallons grey tank when you're boondocking? It's sure depend but I wonder if i put a 30-35 gallons fresh water and only a 15-20 grey tank if that will be an issue since most of the fresh goes in the grey!
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Old 02-12-2015, 10:09 AM   #36
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You need to use slightly larger waste tankage than fresh tankage. To figure your black tank size... Keep a log of how often you go to the bathroom per day for a month (both at home and away and for #1 & #2). For RV toilets, in order to keep from having a problem with toilet paper, you need to use plenty of water. I suggest a single flush for #1 and a double flush for #2. You are really counting the flushes. Find the toilet you want to use and see how much water it uses per flush. Take your month long flush numbers add them up and then divide that number by the number of days in your month to get a daily average. How many days do you want to go between dumps? Multiply the number of days between dumps by your average daily flush. Multiply the resulting number by the amount of water used to flush. Now add at least 15% to the number. Turn the number into gallons. Then refigure because you don't have enough space for a tank that size. If this is a weekender, you only need to go the length of your weekend. For longer, you may need to get a 4 wheeled side discharge tote (a bit pricey) to dump your black & grey tank into. Get a tote that will hold the entire contents of your black tank in one discharge. Trust me on this one. Been there, done that with a two wheeled tote. I still have the Barker 35 gallon two wheeled tote we used on the popup (cassette toilet so it was only used for grey water) and have used it on the Class C. I think I will let it go with the Class C when Das Mel sells it this Spring. It was very heavy and difficult for me to tip up on end to dump. I could do it but a side discharge would have been better and well worth the $$. Change the original wheels out to rubber ones (popular RV mod) and get a "float" to know when it's full. I had to drill a tiny hole in the top of my float so it would work right as it fit into the vent and without the hole it would not vent. This is a good basic thread to read about people who actually use them and why they use them. I suggest you read it to get an idea of how much tankage they are filling up.

http://forums.woodalls.com/Index.cfm...d/24979042.cfm

On edit: to keep it cheap and easy, you might want to make your own "portable" waste tank from a black ABS rocket tank (warning the larger ones are baffled) and put it on a flat dolly or wagon then just hook it up when you are in a site. ABS means you can add (glue in with all-purpose plumbing cement) your own fittings. You just need a space to carry it.
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Old 02-12-2015, 10:10 AM   #37
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I'm wondering if I can put some kind of electrical release valve on the grey tank or possibly arrange for it to leak a bit so I don't have to empty it
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Old 02-12-2015, 11:37 AM   #38
Bus Crazy
 
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Farmington Hills, Mi (Detroit area)
Posts: 1,927
Year: 2000
Coachwork: Eldorado Aerotech 24'
Chassis: Ford E-450 Cutaway Bus
Engine: 7.3L Powerstroke
Rated Cap: 19
We've never come close to filling our grey tank on a long weekend camp out, but we don't use the shower that much and we try to wash as few dishes as possible. When boondocking I either "dribble" (leave the grey valve open all weekend) or drain it on the ground before we leave. Established campgrounds frown on this sort of thing but out in the wild I can't see a problem. It's only dish and shower water after all.

Truth told, I've even drained it in the campgrounds a time or two, but only at a dirt campsite and only way after dark.
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Old 02-12-2015, 12:36 PM   #39
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An electric release valve that can be operated while driving sounds ideal
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Old 02-12-2015, 01:51 PM   #40
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Chassis: 40 ft All American FE
Engine: 8.2LTA Fuel Pincher DD V8
Rated Cap: 89
They make remote waste dump valves. Kinda pricey. Legally, you need to still put a normal valve on the end of the run. You can be fined for dumping hazardous waste if caught dumping grey or black water (EPA).
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