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Author Topic: Bus Freighter?  (Read 5928 times)
Ed Hackenbruch
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« Reply #15 on: February 02, 2010, 07:43:18 PM »

Interesting bit of info on the orchids. I knew he had the island and raised orchids but did not know he sent them anywhere. Smiley
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Nellie Wilson
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« Reply #16 on: February 02, 2010, 09:23:03 PM »

Ed -

Yup. From what I understand, 'ol Ray had quite a little operation... hands on, all the way. Took great pride in his 'specimens,' and shipped them to botanical gardens and (high end) florists all over the place. Especially, I heard, Japan (go figure?).

'Course he had the $$ to fund it and - rumor has it - a nice backup from Bush, Sr. (via USAID). But, hey, thems that got gets, right?

Nellie  Cry
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TomC
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« Reply #17 on: February 02, 2010, 10:10:36 PM »

I had a conversation with my Thermoking factory rep about refer units on trucks.  There is NO humidity controls available.  If you did add a humidifier, it would just be fighting the refer unit since one of the things the refer unit does is dehumidify the air.  If you want temp control between 65-75 degrees without humidity control, that is not a problem.  And you don't have to worry about hot or cold spots since the refer units push alot of air around the inside of the truck.  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
oldmansax
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« Reply #18 on: February 03, 2010, 05:43:27 AM »

A couple of disclaimers:

I really am not trying to be argumentative, just informative .... Maybe!

All of my knowledge is severely dated. Please feel free to correct me... GENTLY, I am easily hurt.    Grin

When we were hauling plants & flowers, the last thing we wanted was lots of warm (or hot), dry air blowing around in the trailer. We tried a lot of different things to keep it from blowing directly on the plants because it would dry them out, including a misting system. The best thing I came up with was using the old TransiCold under slung units. They had the engine, compressor, and a DC generator mounted under the trailer an the evaporator and DC fans mounts up front. I found a way to regulate the fan speed based on temp. The Thermokings had a belt drive fan that ran all the time. It would dry the plants out in a heart beat.

The rest of this post is purely hypothetical and should not be attempted except by trained professionals on a closed course. Severe injury and/or death may result. Excessive fines and taxes may be levied. Your mileage may vary. YADA YADA YADA.

A devious person such as the one I used to be could simply buy an already converted bus, titled as a motor home and and add the side door, ramp, and racks. Leave most of the interior. Try the system & work out the bugs. No permits, no emissions, no scales, no problems. If it proves feasible, look into making it legal,  If not, sell the bus & back to the drawing board.

I already know the insurance hassles & whatever. I also know you would pretty much have to be deceitful.

I told you I have a devious and treacherous mind.

TOM
« Last Edit: February 03, 2010, 06:30:48 PM by oldmansax » Logged

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TomC
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« Reply #19 on: February 03, 2010, 07:47:22 AM »

Tom- Yes, the Thermokings are still belt driven so whatever the engine is doing (whether it be on high, low, or off) is what the fan will be doing.  Carrier units, on the other hand, are separate (like the under belly units [which are extremely expensive]) in that they have electric fans on the evaporator that usually run at a constant speed.  The usual way of doing refer is to have a canvas duct running down the center roof with the cold air being dumped in the rear, then it filters back up to the front.  You can also order the canvas duct with holes in it to gently dump air all along the length of it.  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
fr8bus
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« Reply #20 on: February 07, 2010, 12:09:07 AM »

Thanks so much to everyone for the thoughtful input.

Unfortunately for me, profit is the primary consideration I must take into account in considering this venture. While it sounds feasible in some ways theoretically, there are a few issues to work through (i.e the emissions, refrigeration, etc...). Still, I know of no great way to truck tropical plants long-distances either. A greenhouse on wheels would be the most ideal (or a greenhouse with wings would be even better), but there are quite a few limitations we're up against.

I'll have to do more research into the refrigeration vs. humidity issue. I know that is how an air conditioner works; it uses a condenser unit to take humidity out of the air. But how about an old fashion swamp cooler? Has anyone ever thought of mounting one of those on a coach?

Just keeping the "out of the box" ideas going. I have no commitment to the concept yet, but still want to cover all the major points. I would still dig the idea of someday cruising the nation in a coach (freight coach or personalized travel rig), but that still is a ways off for me.
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BG6
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« Reply #21 on: February 07, 2010, 09:54:55 AM »

One major advantage that you would have with a coach is that you would be in there WITH the orchids, instead of relying on telemetry to tell you if the air is the right temp and humidity.  For that matter, your breath will provide a little of that humdity.

You would need an intercity coach, with the windows skinned over.  You can build inner walls yourself, however thick you need for the insulation you will blow in there.  The factory air conditioning will probably need a couple of rooftop aircons to help.  You will want to install a roof mister for when you are parked, and an interior mister for the humdity -- and you have plenty of basement storage for tanks, pump, and all of the other stuff you need to carry with you.

I agree that you would be happier with a coach that has a wheelchair lift, but you can also make a dumbwaiter if you can't find the lift, either through a window or through a cargo bay..

You want a coach which is just coming out of paid service, where you can check the records for maintenance and repairs, and where you know that the aircon is working well.  You may be able to knock a bit off the price by letting them keep the seats and most of the windows (remember, you're skinning them over), but don't count on it.

My coach came from a guy who bought it from a tour company so that he could maker ONE TRIP hauling a lot of expensive exotic birds across the country.  It cost him less to buy the coach and drive it than it would have cose to have them shipped, plus he was able to see to their care during the trip and knew exactly how they were doing because he was right there with them.

If it worked for fancy birds, it will work for fancy flowers!

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philiptompkjns
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« Reply #22 on: February 07, 2010, 04:11:09 PM »

it sounds like someone wants to take the grow house with them when they have to make a run for the boarder.
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« Reply #23 on: February 08, 2010, 05:31:38 AM »

Can you imagine all the enforcement around the bus if the 'plant bus' were to be stopped ?   Be sure you also carry donuts?

Have good signage to prevent misjudgements; with all the A/C systems / heating systems / ventilation / swamp coolers / lighting  !!!  LOL

Good point, Phillip !!!
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roadrunnertex
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« Reply #24 on: February 08, 2010, 06:31:51 AM »

Using a bus to haul plants will work.
A plant nursery located near Conroe,Texas use to own a ex Greyhound Scenicruiser PD-4501 to haul plants all around Texas.
The owner removed the bus interior and installed racks for the plants.
Also had a large door installed in the right side upper deck to load and unload the pants.
Note this was many years ago.
jlv Tongue
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roadrunnertex
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« Reply #25 on: February 08, 2010, 06:43:26 AM »

Not Pants but Plants! Grin
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fr8bus
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« Reply #26 on: February 08, 2010, 09:40:30 AM »

I had a conversation with my Thermoking factory rep about refer units on trucks.  There is NO humidity controls available.  If you did add a humidifier, it would just be fighting the refer unit since one of the things the refer unit does is dehumidify the air.  If you want temp control between 65-75 degrees without humidity control, that is not a problem.  And you don't have to worry about hot or cold spots since the refer units push alot of air around the inside of the truck.  Good Luck, TomC

This sounds like this is going to be a challenge both via reefer or freighter conversion. I suppose they don't make mobile swamp coolers  Cheesy.

Any idea what the fuel consumption is like on a Thermoking  (or similar) unit? Will it operate in the underspace of a coach? I've only seen them mounted on the outside of reefer boxes.

Thanks for looking into this.
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HighTechRedneck
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« Reply #27 on: February 08, 2010, 09:50:13 AM »

I suppose they don't make mobile swamp coolers  Cheesy.


Actually somebody does.  Forum member MCI-RICK has a rather unusual MCI transit bus that was built much more like an RTS than a MCI highway coach.  It came with a built in evaporative cooling system (swamp cooler).
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DaveG
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« Reply #28 on: February 08, 2010, 10:46:40 AM »

ThermoKing or Carrier will both want to know how many BTU's you are looking for. Typically they ask questions like box/trailer size, inches of insulation and temperature required. Some of the smaller units (like go on a 8-12' van/box) can operate off the vehicle's engine, larger capacity units use separate diesel (or diesel/electric unit).
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Just Dallas
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« Reply #29 on: February 08, 2010, 11:08:13 AM »

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« Last Edit: July 15, 2010, 12:03:42 PM by Now Just Dallas » Logged

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