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Thread: Compressor driven Air Conditioner

  1. #1
    Speedster Member R_David's Avatar
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    Compressor driven Air Conditioner

    I just realized my title is confusing. It is an electric motor driven compressor.

    Has anybody here used this?
    https://www.seanhylandmotorsport.com...right-for-you/

    i like the the idea of it, although I might have to switch to an alternator considering the high current draw. But the idea of not having to deal with trying to run an A/C compressor off the crank appeals to me. Much simpler installation.
    Last edited by R_David; 05-17-2018 at 08:01 AM.

    1961 Flamingo Studebaker Hawk

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    Silver Hawk Member bezhawk's Avatar
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    There are also factory ones in use in some vehicles. Prius has them, also Tesla. I always though a car like Avanti needed more than 1 evaporator to cool it due to the large greenhouse rear window.
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    Golden Hawk Member 8E45E's Avatar
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    It's a 'sealed can' compressor, typically seen in household refrigerators, with a fully enclosed motor, in this case, 12 volts.

    I suspect when new cars and trucks start moving up to the 48 volt standard, one will see more of this style of compressor in vehicles.

    Craig

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    Silver Hawk Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by bezhawk View Post
    There are also factory ones in use in some vehicles. Prius has them, also Tesla.
    All electric vehicles, including the Nissan Leaf, BMW i3 and Chevrolet Bolt, as well as most hybrids, have to use a electrically driven AC compressor.

    jack vines
    PackardV8

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    Golden Hawk Member jclary's Avatar
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    I would love to install one of these in my C-Cab, and my Business Coupe. However, these days, with only an occasional trip to a cruise-in, local show, or club meet...I'm not sure I couldn't make much better use of the over two grand required to gather all the components and assemble a working unit. New tires, upkeep, and other operational requirements would probably be a better use of the money or more fairly spent on things my family cares more about than my self-indulgent car interests.

    Even better, would be a totally self-contained portable unit that could be moved from one vehicle to another.
    John Clary
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    Golden Hawk Member 8E45E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jclary View Post
    Even better, would be a totally self-contained portable unit that could be moved from one vehicle to another.
    Then you'll have to settle for one of these: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...ification-Help

    Craig

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    Golden Hawk Member jclary's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 8E45E View Post
    Then you'll have to settle for one of these: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...ification-Help

    Craig
    Nope...not going to "Settle." Somewhere, sometime, someone will develop a reliable working unit, with a way to dump condensate, and cool a small cabin, such as a coupe or truck. I can imagine a battery operated unit, perhaps incorporating a solar panel for battery charging and supplemental power, but I believe it is something possible. Already, there are electrically powered portable drink/sandwich coolers for boats and cars. Today, you can go to Lowes & Home Depot and buy a household current powered self-contained portable air conditioning unit capable of cooling a small room. It may be that the market is just too small to cause anyone to produce such a device for us "Oldtimer" car guys (clinging to our six volts). Economically, the potential market wouldn't make sense, but I believe the technology already exists.
    John Clary
    Greer, SC
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    Silver Hawk Member
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    It takes several horsepower to deliver the amount of heat transfer needed to air condition a car. If you had a portable electric unit of that capacity, it would need #4 wire direct to the battery, and your charging system would have to put out at the max to keep the battery up.
    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

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    President Member Rerun's Avatar
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    I recall seeing a Studebaker pick-up some years ago that had an air conditioning system powered by a single cylinder gas engine, mounted in the bed. Rather than taxing the 6 cylinder motor with the compressor, it was totally independent. Given that it created some noise and vibration, it seemed like a great idea. Anyone know this truck?
    Jim Bradley
    Palmyra, VA
    '78 Avanti II

  10. #10
    President Member TWChamp's Avatar
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    I've seen a couple Model A's with a small window unit A/C mounted in the rear side window, and being powered by a Honda generator mounted off the rear bumper. Not too attractive, but got the job done. I have a small newer portable A/C that I could set in the back seat, and run my Honda generator on the rear bumper. I'll have to check the amp draw on the portable A/C unit to see if my Honda EU1000 can handle the job.

  11. #11
    Golden Hawk Member jclary's Avatar
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    I too have seen some pretty clever "One-Off" innovations. I agree with Gord on the challenges when dealing with traditionally available common components. However, when money is not the biggest obstacle, some amazing innovations are possible. Some of today's technological innovations have come from our space programs. Insulation and heat exchange is critical in the science required for human survival in space. Taking some of those advances and applying them to the "space" in a vintage Studebaker is our challenge.

    One of our club members has (or had) a bullet nose Champion in which he had installed a 12v Air Conditioner. Somehow, he had rigged up a complete separate 12v system to operate the air conditioner. For those running a separate engine to power one, I know of fewer irritating noises than one of these household generators running. I have a couple, well-made generators, with good mufflers. But, when I use them, I place them as far away as possible without suffering too much voltage drop from the long cord run. Of course, when life circumstances occur that cause you to need one of these portable generators...you're probably already irritated from having to set it up in the first place.

    As far as what is needed to cool the space in a car...more needs to be considered than just the "space" of the passenger compartment. A vintage vehicle would need upgraded insulation from floor, firewall, sides & top. The rate of heat exchange, air flow, cycle rate of coolant "boil" and re-condensing, etc. Remember, air conditioners do not make cold air...they remove heat. That exchange has to be efficient enough to sustain a process that removes the heat (BTU"s) at a greater rate than the environment can replace it. I have had worn/missing accelerator boots, poor clutch & brake seals allowing enough heat to enter to offset the benefit of the best air conditioner. Add poor window/door seals, and it becomes a near hopeless lost cause.

    All that said, I love these conversations. Anyone with a workaround that you have improvised, no matter if it seems impractical... please share it.
    John Clary
    Greer, SC
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    Golden Hawk Member 8E45E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jclary View Post
    That exchange has to be efficient enough to sustain a process that removes the heat (BTU"s) at a greater rate than the environment can replace it. I have had worn/missing accelerator boots, poor clutch & brake seals allowing enough heat to enter to offset the benefit of the best air conditioner. Add poor window/door seals, and it becomes a near hopeless lost cause.

    All that said, I love these conversations. Anyone with a workaround that you have improvised, no matter if it seems impractical... please share it.
    Howard Hughes first addressed it in 1953: https://azure.barrett-jackson.com/Ev...OR-SEDAN-22005

    Craig

  13. #13
    Commander Member JimKB1MCV's Avatar
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    The Hughes Buick is great, the AC installation looks a little less sophisticated than I would expect from the Hughes aircraft engineers, even for '53.
    The price may be little steep.
    Re AC unit size and power requirements we need to remember that technology is constantly evolving. As more voltage is available, the required amperage is going to be less. I guess thats part of the technological 'trickle-down' from things like the space program.
    It boils down to "Of course you can do that,kid, how much money do you have in your piggy bank?"

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    President Member Dwain G.'s Avatar
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    Beginning 20 or more years ago, car makers were planning to have 36 volt systems. All accessories would be driven electrically and could be located in any convenient remote location since they no longer had to be belt driven by the engine.
    That plan went silent until recent years. Now we see electric power steering assist, water pumps, hybrid and full electric cars.

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