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Heated shower on top of truck
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addiroids


May 18, 2003, 10:47 PM
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Heated shower on top of truck
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Okay, at the risk of sounding like to total prissy faggot, but really being too much of a dirtbag cheap-ass to want to pay for another shower again while at places like Red Rocks, Zion, Needles, and long term like a 6 month road trip I plan to take in 3 years, I was thinking of building a solar heated shower on the top of a truck shell.

I was thinking of snaking 4" diameter black PVC tubing around the top of the shell with a 5-10 gallon removable black tank that can be pressurized using a bike pump or something else (used keg??) and a hose-sprayer shower head at the other end. This would sit at the back of the truck so you could pump and shower all while being behind a curtain (for those who aren't exhibitionists like me). Yeah, this couldn't really be done in the wild (soap on the ground and runoff issues) but if you were in like a parking lot, as long as you had a lookout, you would be totally fine.

Give me some thoughts, especially from those who have a plumbing background. The volume of the tube would be around 20 liters according to my calculations, so another 5-10 gallons in a tank should be fine for 2-3 people to shower I'm guessing. Of course you would turn the water off while soaping up. So it just heats up while climbing, then it's hot/warm when you are done.

TRADitionally yours,

Cali Dirtbag


bsignorelli


May 18, 2003, 11:05 PM
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Keep in mind the fact that water weighs about 8-lbs per gallon. So your rough calculations of 10-15 gallons means 80-120 lbs on top of the campertop. Just a thought about the weight issue, you wouldn't want the shell to crack and then start leaking.

How about doing the same thing but with one of the commercially available solar shower bags? You could fill the bag up and let it sit on top of the camper shell while climbing.

If you did that then you wouln't suffer worse gas mileage due to the tubing on top.

I also think the larger solar showers have a foot pump so you can pressurize the bag.

Bryan


rockprodigy


May 19, 2003, 8:22 AM
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You're also depending on it being sunny. You should rig up a bypass system so if it's cloudy you can run the water through a copper tubing coil that you place over your stove to heat the water before it hits you. Heck, screw the bypass, just make that your primary system, then you don't have to worry about all that weight on your camper top.


brendodb


May 19, 2003, 8:52 AM
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....if you could figure someway to run the tubing through the radiator area... you would be able to take a hot shower any time you wanted just by driving to the crag!!!!!!!!!


lazide


May 19, 2003, 8:56 AM
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Re: Heated shower on top of truck [In reply to]
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Dude, just get one of those propane powered on demand portable water heaters - nice warm water, less hassle and weight than what it sounds like you are planning. Probably takes up less space too. Cabelas and them had them last time I checked

-- Added --
Oops, my bad. Coleman is the company that makes the one I saw (http://tinyurl.com/c4ff) - a little expensive, but serious hard core hot shower material there ;)


hugepedro


May 19, 2003, 8:58 AM
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In reply to:
Okay, at the risk of sounding like to total prissy faggot

Too late. ;)


http://www.packinpotty.com/portable-solar-shower.html

80 bucks. It also has an attachment so you can use a BBQ to heat the water.


zetedog


May 19, 2003, 9:50 AM
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I've seen what you are talking about done two different ways. I helped a buddy build out his full size van for roadtripping. He put three of the large MSR Dromedery water bags (black) on the top of his van. He had a Yak style rack on the back 1/3 of his van (it was originally on his mazda), and secured the water bags down right behind the wind deflector. No pump, just gravity feed, only on when rinsing off. Worked very well, except refilling it was a bit of a pain. He eventually rigged a footpump to refuel. Water was pretty damn hot, even on cloudy days. MSR sells shower kits for their bags, which we had one of for the shower head. We rigged some surgical tubing and valves from the hardware store to extend the shower and connect all three bags together.

I recently saw guy with an extended cab full size p/u with a shell that was completely rigged out. When he dropped down the tailgate, he had a kitchen/sink deal that would slide out from under his bed board (bed was built up on top of the wheel wells, I'm sure you have seen that, are doing that), Cutting board, 2-stove burner, and a mini sink, etc. Right next to the sink was a water bag system of the 5gal cube style water bags. The guy said that he had about 20 gals worth of water holding capacity, 4 bags. He had a foot pump that would either power his little sink, or the shower. The shower was constructed by having one of the 5gal water cubes connected via footpump to a large amount of black garden hose that was snaked back and forth on the top of his truck shell(easily 25-50 feet worth of hose. He also also had a yak style rack on top of his truck, which is how he had the hose secured, rocket box as well. He said that the leave water in the hose all day, it would heat up to a reasonable temp, then while taking a shower, he would pump new (colder) water into the hose with a foot pump. He said it worked well, but had three complaints: if he left water in the hose too long, it would be funky, priming the hose full of water, if empty, took forever, and he had popped the hose one time when it froze full of water.
His kitchen setup, looked to be a modified version of this:

http://www.rei.com/online/store/ProductDisplay?storeId=8000&catalogId=40000008000&productId=47592508&parent_category_rn=4500555

But it would just sit on the tailgate (no lower shelf, no L part)


His connectors looked to be radiator hose type clamps (metal) His shower head looked to be a modified kitchen sink spigot, but I couldn't tell.

He had obviously spent a lot of time and $$ on his rig.

Todd


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