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Old 01-31-2013, 12:41 AM   #11
LeftTurnOnly
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Ahhh great... glad to hear your found some 220v fans...

I'm not sure i totally follow the first question... sorry about that... so i'll start with #2, and then come back to that one...

The material itself is a polystyrene insulation board. I used it as the insulation for the walls, floor and ceiling. I had some left over, so i used it to make a duct, or shaft for when the fans are on. The top chamber is generally warmer, and the bottom chamber is generally cooler, so for example, if the bottom chamber was getting a little too cool, the fan on the right hand side would blow the warmer air down the duct so the warm air came into the cool chamber at the bottom and would have a chance to rise. The same goes for the other one on the left to blow the cooler air up and out to the top. They very well may not be needed, but it seemed like a good idea at the time... or you could use actual air duct tubing too... :-)

Ok... now back to question #1.... i'll try and describe a few other things, and if i don't hit what you were asking, just let me know....

So for fans, there are 5 of them. 2 are for the purple boxes. 1 you can see on the right, and 1 you can't see on the left because it's on the ceiling of the lower chamber. The left blows up to cool the top when needed and the right blows down to warm the bottom when needed. The fan on the wall on the left is wired to the ceramic pet heater so that fan runs when the heater is on. That heater is the only heat source for the whole thing. The fan on the very top i think i have just running all the time to circulate the air in side. That was also the plan for the fan on the bottom then that photo was taken, back when i was only planning on 2 chambers. Shortly after that, i added a wall in the middle on the bottom to make 2 chambers on the bottom for 3 total. so i moved the fan on the bottom into the middle wall to transfer cold air from the lower chamber on the left, to the the lower chamber on the right when needed. The big device on the lower left is a window air conditioner that is used as the cooling source for the whole thing. It's hooked up to a CoolBot to fake out the air conditioner without having to rewire it. That thing is awesome! You can do the same thing without it if you know how to rewire it, but i just didn't want to mess with it and it works great. The cold side of my box is currently 35.8*F.

It's all being controlled by 2 Ranco Temp Controller. I used 2 stage Ranco's for heating and cooling... i'm not sure if the one in the link is 1 or 2 stage, but you get the idea.

If i missed anything, just let me know... I have been very happy with how the thing has worked.

Good luck!
Kyle...

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Old 01-31-2013, 01:46 PM   #12
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Thank you very much for the detailed explanation. I think I understand everything now.

Regarding the Coolbot, I thought it was just a unit which you would plug in to a temp controller and it would handle the cooling. After your email I looked around and see it needs a air conditioner like you have installed. I don't quite get how the coolbot makes it cooler but I will read about it somewhere. I have a large fridge with a freezing box in the bottom and one idea I'm thinking about is having the lower part (where the freezer is) open into the box and have the fridge as the cooling unit. I'm not sure if it would handle it but it's worth the try.

I think the coolbot and the air conditioner would cost too much for me so I'm thinking about using the freezer for the same purpose.

Thanks for the detailed help.
Johann

Quote:
Originally Posted by LeftTurnOnly View Post
Ahhh great... glad to hear your found some 220v fans...

I'm not sure i totally follow the first question... sorry about that... so i'll start with #2, and then come back to that one...

The material itself is a polystyrene insulation board. I used it as the insulation for the walls, floor and ceiling. I had some left over, so i used it to make a duct, or shaft for when the fans are on. The top chamber is generally warmer, and the bottom chamber is generally cooler, so for example, if the bottom chamber was getting a little too cool, the fan on the right hand side would blow the warmer air down the duct so the warm air came into the cool chamber at the bottom and would have a chance to rise. The same goes for the other one on the left to blow the cooler air up and out to the top. They very well may not be needed, but it seemed like a good idea at the time... or you could use actual air duct tubing too... :-)

Ok... now back to question #1.... i'll try and describe a few other things, and if i don't hit what you were asking, just let me know....

So for fans, there are 5 of them. 2 are for the purple boxes. 1 you can see on the right, and 1 you can't see on the left because it's on the ceiling of the lower chamber. The left blows up to cool the top when needed and the right blows down to warm the bottom when needed. The fan on the wall on the left is wired to the ceramic pet heater so that fan runs when the heater is on. That heater is the only heat source for the whole thing. The fan on the very top i think i have just running all the time to circulate the air in side. That was also the plan for the fan on the bottom then that photo was taken, back when i was only planning on 2 chambers. Shortly after that, i added a wall in the middle on the bottom to make 2 chambers on the bottom for 3 total. so i moved the fan on the bottom into the middle wall to transfer cold air from the lower chamber on the left, to the the lower chamber on the right when needed. The big device on the lower left is a window air conditioner that is used as the cooling source for the whole thing. It's hooked up to a CoolBot to fake out the air conditioner without having to rewire it. That thing is awesome! You can do the same thing without it if you know how to rewire it, but i just didn't want to mess with it and it works great. The cold side of my box is currently 35.8*F.

It's all being controlled by 2 Ranco Temp Controller. I used 2 stage Ranco's for heating and cooling... i'm not sure if the one in the link is 1 or 2 stage, but you get the idea.

If i missed anything, just let me know... I have been very happy with how the thing has worked.

Good luck!
Kyle...
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Old 01-31-2013, 06:05 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gugguson View Post
I don't quite get how the coolbot makes it cooler but I will read about it somewhere.
The best information I could find on what it is that the CoolBot does, and how, was in the installation instructions on their web site.

The CoolBot has a room temp sensor that is used to tell the CoolBot when it needs to make cold air by running the air conditioner.

It has a small heater that you attach to the thermostat in the AC unit. This heater is used to tell the AC unit when to run - no splicing wires needed. By heating the thermostat it can force the AC unit to continue to run even when the room temp is below the set point of the AC thermostat.

It also has a sensor to tell it when the AC unit is icing over. It adjusts the compressor cycle times to prevent the icing.


The advantages over other controllers are that it installs without modifications to the ac unit, protecting any warranty and eliminating the need for electrical knowledge, and it prevents icing.
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Old 01-31-2013, 11:37 PM   #14
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Yea... the downside of going with the CoolBot with window AC for this particular application is definitely the price especially if you have some other options available to you. I was concerned that the compressor on a freezer may not be able to keep up with the demand on a larger area, so i went the CoolBot route, and have been very happy, but yea... Give it a shot with what you have available.

Oh, and yea... reynolds5520's description of how the CoolBot works is spot on. It's a slick little device.

Good luck with your build!
Cheers!
Kyle...

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