You're telling us, that in all the years working on rack systems, you never snagged a "spare" muffin fan of a suitable size?
That is correct.
At PR&E, 100% of the machines that we designed were convection-cooled. This being equipment intended to go into a studio, fans were absolutely prohibited. It was damn near religious zealotry. Aside from the faint 200,000 Hz hum of the power supplies, our equipment was absolutely, 100% silent.
(Believe me, this was not an easy task in the larger cardframes, which could easily dissipate 200+ watts. I remember back in 2003 it took us weeks of trial-and-error to get the geometry of the original Vistamax chassis nailed down, using handmade dummy boards loaded with resistors stuffed into cardboard chassis mockups equipped with thermistor probes everywhere. Why didn't we just model the **** in some fancy computer program, you ask? Because we were idiots, that's why.)
On the other side of the company, the air-cooled transmitters were equipped either with axial fans several feet in diameter, or with squirrel-cage fans the size of a small beer keg, and both powered by three-phase motors. Not precisely the sort of thing you can casually slip into your pocket and sneak out the back door with.
Aside from our own products, I haven't had to do any sort of maintenance / repairs in nearly 15 years, so I never bothered amassing a stockpile of such parts. I've got a bunch of 486DX computers which are smaller than a credit card, but that's about it.
Additionally, when I moved from San Diego to Santa Clara, I literally got rid of nearly all of my worldly possessions. I made that move in one trip with a 10 foot U-haul truck. As I mentioned earlier, it was complicated... Imagine trying to fit everything that you own into a box ten feet long, six feet tall and six feet wide.
Joe, talks of bicycle parking problems, general space and commuting problems, and your electric bike saga caused me to think of you when I saw this.
It would fit in an elevator, haha! How about an electric version?
Is that a joke, or is it an actual thing?
For me, the big issue is weight. The problem with the folding e-bike that I tried out was that even at a paltry 38 lbs, lugging it through the PATH train system was a real chore, hauling it over turnstiles and around crowded train cars at rush hour. I've pretty much just accepted the fact that there is no practical unified solution to that problem, and that my transportation needs are going to have to be solved with a split approach- one system on the Jersey side (presently Jerseybike the $95 WalMart Wonder) and another on the Manhattan side (presently CitiBike, currently working on ShitiBike.)
Originally Posted by kenzo42
Joe, do you need a vids of it? I have one here in my living room.
Nah, I went ahead and ordered one from Amazon. Definitely going to need it, too. With the temps being in the 30s lately, the present system is adequate to keep the apartment from being intolerable, but I'm maxed out how much water flow I can make good use of, and I need more airflow to get it back up to "comfy without needing a sweater."
Whatever it is is what it will be. And, to be honest, the noise isn't that much of a problem. I wasn't joking about the diesel locomotives running all night long just outside my bedroom window. Well, I was exaggerating about them running full-tilt-boogie on a load dyno, typically they alternate between idle and unloaded running speed, but they do in fact do it all night long, and they are not quiet. Conformal silicone earplugs don't even block all of it when the engine speed perfectly matches the natural resonance frequency of my bedroom windows.
To eliminate* the possibility of flooding, you could keep everything confined to the sink(or right above it), and simply route some smallish collapsible heater ducting to your room(or to the foot of the bed.. beneath the blankets?!). Fold it up and throw it aside when not needed. Would be pretty cool to have it your hoses, radiator, and fan mounted on some type of swivel platform to swing back over the counter to free up the sink.
Or how about having the radiator sit horizontally above the sink, with the ducting running straight up, loosely mounted to the ceiling, ran to your bed room. Would keep everything out of the way. Not really sure how much heat would be lost along the way, or how much more power would be needed to push the air. Would cut down on your fan noise with it being further away...
Front grille detached from fan, and affixed to a 1/8" sheet of ABS plastic, pre-cut for fan opening:
(Protip: see those cut-down fender washers? Operating an angle grinder in the kitchen makes a huge ******* mess.)
Grille-and-plate re-attached to fan, with sealing foam added:
Complete assembly bolted to radiator with 1" nylon spacers:
I also solved the supply-side problem. Conveniently, the apartment was already pre-plumbed with a 3/8" compression-style hot water outlet under the sink specifically for this purpose. It had a dishwasher plugged into it for some silly reason, but a piece of faucet hose and one adapter solved the problem rather neatly:
Still gonna do something about the return-side. I'm thinking maybe a J-shaped section of hardline looped over the side of the sink.
I wish I could provide it. My current job does not afford me easy access to laboratory-grade measuring instruments.
Originally Posted by leboeuf
This has probably been covered, but if your setup can handle full city water pressure you could use a recirculation pump and send the spent "coolant" back down the cold water pipe.
An interesting concept.
While I don't have accurate data on my own water pressure, a bit of research has shown that "typical" domestic water pressure can range from 40-90 PSI. A typical OEM radiator cap is around 0.8 to 1.0 bar, or 11.6 - 14.5 PSI. I wouldn't really feel comfortable operating the radiator at 5 times design pressure.
Originally Posted by good2go
So Joe, how well does this system actually work? Is is worth the effort, or is this more, as you say, just "sticking it to the man"?
Pretty well, actually.
This apartment is about 800 sq.ft, and it's a corner unit with large windows almost totally covering two sides. When the wind is really up, I can feel cold air seeping through every seam.
Today, the outside temps have been in the mid to upper 20s, heading down to a low of 21 tonight. I've had the fan running on high speed, and water flow at around 30 GPH.
To be honest, I wish this Honeywell fan moved more air. It was clearly not designed to operate against a restriction, though it's doing a reasonable job none the less, and far better than the computer case fan I started with. Even at high speed, it's reasonably quiet. I can hear it, but it's hardly objectionable.
I have no way of accurately measuring the temperature inside the apartment, and while it's not exactly toasty, it's perfectly comfortable with a light sweater over a T-shirt, and fuzzy pajama pants. I have the main heaters in the apartment turned off. If it were to become significantly colder, I might turn one of them on at a low level.
I wouldn't be interested in putting possibly toxic elements into the building's drinking water system.
I feel like an accused witch in the 17th century being tried for poisoning the town well and turning the cow's milk sour.
Originally Posted by pdexta
Even better, the existing dishwasher had to drain somewhere. In his picture you can see a white hose returning from the dishwasher, shouldn't be hard to tap into what's already there.
Yes, there is a dishwasher tee. I considered using it, but I don't wish to.
Being able to observe the outflow water affords me a quick and easy means of adjusting the inflow, based on a learned knowledge of flowrate vs. fan speed vs. heat output. Short of someone sending me a free flowmeter, I need to be able to observe the outflow, and that means a free-return into the sink basin.
The return line isn't a major hardship like the supply line was, more of an aesthetic concern. I am going to fabricate an inverted J pipe out of copper hardline to hook over the edge of the sink basin.
A couple of interesting tidbits:
When I had the system apart over the weekend, I noticed a surprising quantity of mineral deposits inside the end-tanks and inlet fittings. I presume this to be calcium, but whatever it is, it concerns me. Sidebar: In the past, I have always religiously used distilled water in my car's radiator, rather than tap water, and for this exact reason. This experience affirms that superstition.
I also figured out part of why my electric bill has been so damned high. I was looking at the original (un-cropped) version of one of the photos I took over the weekend, and something caught my eye. I got down on my hands and knees this evening, and found this:
Yup. An electric heater under the sink, completely obscured from view. I presume that it's been running continuously since I moved in. I THOUGHT that the kitchen always seemed warmer than the rest of the apartment, but with no logical explanation for it, I'd written this off to the operation of the refrigerator, the flow of hot water through the sink, etc.
Now I know what that mysterious, unlabeled 20A breaker is for!
Anyway, that little piece of **** is now disabled, so it'll be quite interesting to see what effect this has on my next electric bill (or, rather, the one after that, since I'm already halfway into the current billing cycle.)
I have literally never seen anything like this before in my life! A little electric heater built into the base of the cabinet, and recessed such that it's totally hidden from view unless you've practically got your face on the floor. Is this sort of thing common here in the northeast?!