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Author Topic: Louvers for Engine Compartment  (Read 3601 times)
TomC
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« on: May 08, 2007, 01:26:29 PM »

I'm looking at having made two 24"w x 18"h stainless louvers to better vent the engine compartment, that would be mounted on the back compartment door.  I am surprisingly having a hard time finding a company that will even do it, let alone one that will look good also.  For those that have had custome louvers made-who did you use.  I am in Los Angeles, and would be nice if the company had a rep hear in Calif.  Thanks, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
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« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2007, 01:29:38 PM »

Hello Tom,

Have you tried Mc Master Carr? Don't know if they would have what you need or not.

Paul
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« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2007, 01:37:55 PM »

go to any custom hotrod place...they are all of So Cal...
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« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2007, 02:37:38 PM »

Tom, call Harcon precision metals down in Chula Vista. http://www.harconprecision.com/
They are off main street very near the border... all they pretty much do is make stainless stuff for the navy (furniture, custom stuff etc) they have a water jet cutter and a massively well outfitted machine/ sheet metal shop and they are fairly reasonable on one-up stuff.  They absolutely can do this job for you... I use them all the time in my biz and they are great.
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« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2007, 02:41:23 PM »

Can't m ake out what kind of bus you have, but IBP makes louvered engine bay door panels for a few different buses.  I bought them for my MC9.  It made almost a 10 degree difference in engine temp.  It's amazing how much heat gets dumped right back down on the engine.  The louvered doors let all the heat out.

Ross
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« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2007, 04:30:42 PM »

Tom, I went to the boating industry for mine, they are available in many sizes, most are heavy SS and thickly plated to resist salt water (think sail boat). They are made for flush mounting so look like a factory installation.>>>Dan
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« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2007, 07:17:19 PM »

Ross,

Do you have a contact for IBP?  How much were they?

Has any body vented the side panel to let air in?

Bill
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« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2007, 09:02:15 PM »

The louvers on my Eagle are really not enough. The new MCI has some larger rectangular holes that look like they could move alot of air. We really need to dump all the air the fan is pulling in and that is a lot of air. Wraping the exhaust helped my situation alot. I plan to also wrap the intake side including the air cleaner. Think if I can keep the air temp at the top of the motor near outside air temperature it will help alot.
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« Reply #8 on: May 09, 2007, 04:14:39 AM »

Here is thier web site...

http://www.1800intlbus.com/

The idea is to let hot air out.  Air comes in from the radiator intakes.  Venting the back doors lets the hot air out.  My guess is that if IBP does not make a vented replacement door skin for your bus, they could make one based on your dimensions.  The cost wasn't bad...Maybe $40 per door, but that was before stainless increased in price four fold plus.

Ross
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« Reply #9 on: May 09, 2007, 05:51:17 AM »

 Tom, West marine.>>>Dan
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« Reply #10 on: May 09, 2007, 06:28:43 AM »

I was lurking on the BNO Board yesterday and someone has used a rubber belt 13" by the width of the bus to create a vacuum to force more air into or out of the engine compartment. It was placed under and forward of the engine. Has anyone else tried this? If so what did you learn?
I also would like to add louvers on my engine door so will monitor this thread.
Hope I'm not hijacking this thread too much, sorry Tom C. Wink

Happy Trails,

Paul

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Dallas
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« Reply #11 on: May 09, 2007, 06:36:15 AM »

I was lurking on the BNO Board yesterday and someone has used a rubber belt 13" by the width of the bus to create a vacuum to force more air into or out of the engine compartment. It was placed under and forward of the engine. Has anyone else tried this? If so what did you learn?
I also would like to add louvers on my engine door so will monitor this thread.
Hope I'm not hijacking this thread too much, sorry Tom C. Wink

Happy Trails,

Paul

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Paul,
That flap is OE on all GMC's it creates a low pressure area under the engine to allow the air to be pulled down and out of the compartment.
Unfortunately, most of the GM's I've seen have had it removed, probably due to rot and age.
I had one on my TDH3610 and it worked very well, and will put one on my PD4103 as soon as I find some belting.

The Flxible Newlooks and some MCI's also had it, but I'm not certain that all buses did.

IHTH,
Dallas
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« Reply #12 on: May 09, 2007, 06:51:13 AM »

My thoughts are, if it works as designed replace as necessary. Would any other material work such a UHMW, or does it have to remain flexible? Much cheaper than louvers or can it be used in addition to.

Paul
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« Reply #13 on: May 09, 2007, 12:53:05 PM »

As for belting on air dam. I used round baler belting. Available up to 14" wide at your local Vermeer Ag dealer.  Big John
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« Reply #14 on: May 10, 2007, 10:52:26 AM »

I would think Chaz could also get the job done as that is how he makes his living working with metal's, and you would be sending work to fellow Busnut in the process. I see that as a win /win situation. Just a thought.

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« Reply #15 on: May 20, 2007, 09:20:58 PM »

Here's what I did this weekend.

Installed 4 louvers. 

Went to West Marine, they had a selection of both Plastic and SS.

Bought two SS 3"X 14" for the side engine compartment door.  After cutting the door, these fit flush with the door panel.

Install the two plastic vents, one on each engine rear door.  These are chome and black, and stand out an inch or inch and a half.

Took about 90 minutes to install all four.

Total cost, $90.00

Bill
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« Reply #16 on: May 21, 2007, 06:18:03 AM »

Hey thanx for thinking of me WVAnative!! That is very nice and cool of you!!!!! I'm humbled.

  I can help in that regards but only in the arena of being able to hook you up with a fellow HotRodder that has a louver press. I have several big tools to form panels but not a louver press.
  But I am VERY interested in this topic as I would like to do the same. As a matter of fact, I just happen to have a couple questions in regards to this topic!! Go figure! LOLOL  (Hope this isn't hijacking!!)
  What is the best configuration for the louvers? (the low pressure area that the flaps create seems to work as stock so I don't want to counter that) Would you just put them on the radiator side and then on the back above the engine or ??.
  Hopefully someone here has some good solid knowledge before some of us go cutting up the skin of our bus's.  Shocked Tongue Cry 

   Hope to be helpful one day,
             Chaz
 
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« Reply #17 on: May 21, 2007, 06:49:44 AM »

Saturday, I finished the mister system on the bus (haven't road tested yet).  While testing the misters, I put the engine up to about 1600 rpm with the King Cruise control so I had lots of radiator fan pressure.  My right outside transmission door hinges from the top (unlike GMC that swings like a door).  With the rear big door open, the right side door just hung there.  But when I closed the big rear door, the fan pressure caused the door to be elevated up about 6 inches.  I could push on the door and feel the pressure from the big fan, so that convinced me that installing two 24" wide x 16" tall louvers high on the back door will help.  I have found an A/C company that makes their own vents near to my bus.  I drafted up the design I want and am going to send it into them.  I will probably buy some of the West Marine stainless engine louvers for the auxiliary trans cooler I'll later install on the transmission door. Having a transit that wasn't designed for continuous high speed travel is one more obstacle to overcome.
Thanks to all that contributed to the louver problem.  Good Luck, TomC
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« Reply #18 on: May 24, 2007, 10:14:28 AM »

I was behind a school bus yesterday that was a pusher.  Notice that instead of louver, part of it's double doors was a thin plate with a thousand hole in it.   This would be easy to install, just cut a hole in your engine compartment doors and bolt this in.  Seaching the web for metal supplies will bring up many such metals that could be used for venting.

Bill
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« Reply #19 on: May 24, 2007, 12:51:58 PM »

I was behind a school bus yesterday that was a pusher.  Notice that instead of louver, part of it's double doors was a thin plate with a thousand hole in it.   This would be easy to install, just cut a hole in your engine compartment doors and bolt this in.  Seaching the web for metal supplies will bring up many such metals that could be used for venting.

Will using a metal plate such as this cause problems with moisture intrusion into the engine compartment?

Louvers would at least deflect most water, but a metal plate would be easier to fabricate.
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Kwajdiver
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« Reply #20 on: May 24, 2007, 01:27:08 PM »

Not sure, say if it pours down rain.  Of course looking at my engine, not sure what a little water would hurt.

Let's see what others have to say.

Bill
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« Reply #21 on: May 25, 2007, 10:11:43 AM »

 
 Probably not what you are considering but on mine this is what they did to
 the side rear doors. By the looks this was hand done (by the grinder marks on the
 inside. I plan on doing the same to the back doors  plus the top part of the
 lic. plate holder.   The pattern is the same as the cabin heater/ac intake on the
 side of the bus towards the front.

 Just a thought
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belfert
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« Reply #22 on: May 25, 2007, 10:34:32 AM »


 Probably not what you are considering but on mine this is what they did to
 the side rear doors. By the looks this was hand done (by the grinder marks on the
 

This wouldn't really work on my Dina as the engine door is a huge one piece fiberglass affair.  No metal to cut through.
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« Reply #23 on: May 25, 2007, 10:49:58 AM »

You could drill it -or- cut out a section and replace it with a louvered piece of stainless. Glue it or pop-rivet it in.

  Where there is a will there is a way! Just think HotRods.
    Chaz
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« Reply #24 on: May 25, 2007, 10:55:30 AM »

This wouldn't really work on my Dina as the engine door is a huge one piece fiberglass affair.  No metal to cut through.

Several companies, such as Moore Industrial Hardware and McMaster&Carr sell stainless steel louvered panels in various sizes. I have used these on our bus.  Jack
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Dallas
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« Reply #25 on: May 25, 2007, 11:02:25 AM »


This wouldn't really work on my Dina as the engine door is a huge one piece fiberglass affair.  No metal to cut through.

Brian,

As Jack says, there are companies that specialize in louvered vents and other doodads.

Another option is to make a jig and use a router with a 1/2" rabbeting bit to cut through you fiberglass.

Good Luck,

Dallas

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belfert
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« Reply #26 on: May 25, 2007, 11:37:07 AM »

You could drill it -or- cut out a section and replace it with a louvered piece of stainless. Glue it or pop-rivet it in.

I can certainly do louvers.  I'm saying I can't just cut holes in the doors like an MCI with the stainless skin.

My plan is to install louvers, but I would rather have aluminum since the bus is aluminum and fiberglass.  I would most likely pain the lovers so stainless makes no sense.
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« Reply #27 on: May 28, 2007, 09:56:53 PM »

After cleaning my blower blades today, (thanks to another post on cooling systems) I'm rethinking the louvers on the rear doors.  A solid door, seems to help guild the force of air  down across the engine.  What if by installing louvers not all the air goes down, but out the back door.  Thus lowering the amount of air, design to blow down across the motor.


Hummmmm,

Bill
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« Reply #28 on: May 29, 2007, 05:10:15 AM »

Bill,
  We have the IBP louvered panels on our bus, but they were installed before we added the engine compartment air temp monitor, so I can't say how much, if any differenence they make. A few years ago Fred Hobe was heading north through South Georgia in August, towing his toad. He was experiencing overheated problems, so he stoped and bungie strapped the rear engine compartment doors open. He said this made a big difference, no more over heating problems.  Jack
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« Reply #29 on: May 29, 2007, 05:59:40 AM »

I've also done the bungie strap thing with my doors.  Last summer I was driving in 100+ degree heat in SD and had excess heat problems.  Opening the doors was worth a 5 degree drop on the temp gauge...
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« Reply #30 on: May 29, 2007, 06:11:34 AM »

Re: the belting on GM's? Where was this attached to bus? Is it full width on the original install? Was it in contact with the bus or is a space left up there? And finally, how tall should it be, or how close to the ground when aired up?
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« Reply #31 on: May 29, 2007, 07:03:21 AM »

Re: the belting on GM's? Where was this attached to bus? Is it full width on the original install? Was it in contact with the bus or is a space left up there? And finally, how tall should it be, or how close to the ground when aired up?

John,

Look up under the back end of your '04, just behind the wheel wells. You should see a piece of angle iron about 1"X1".

The flap hangs there. It is pretty much just a mud flap that runs the whole width of the bus.
On my 3610, it was about 4" off the ground and on my 4103 I'm going to make it even closer. Probably 2" or so. My theory being that the less air that can be pushed under the bus to the engine compartment, the more air that will be drawn through the radiator and moved over the engine for cooling.
I just looked in the master parts manual for the 4104 but didn't see it, probably because I'm not certain what GM called it.

I hope this helped,

Dallas

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« Reply #32 on: May 29, 2007, 10:15:06 AM »

Thanks Dallas,

I aired up the bus and looked under there, but am unable to spot where it would have been mounted. but i see some mounts that look like perhaps there was a belly pan of some sorts under the motor. Is this possible?
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« Reply #33 on: May 29, 2007, 10:32:51 AM »

Thanks Dallas,

I aired up the bus and looked under there, but am unable to spot where it would have been mounted. but i see some mounts that look like perhaps there was a belly pan of some sorts under the motor. Is this possible?

your looking to far back toward the engine. The flap hangs closer to the rear tires, and yes, All the GMC's came with a belly pan to catch the horse power as it leaked out.

I can get the part numbers for you if you want them, but I have never seen a bus with the shield still installed. I think all the mechanics tossed them as soon as they could because they made it such a pain in the keister to do anything under the engine, especially change oil and oil filter.
If you happen to find a set of the shields, you will have a super rare item that lots of other people would love to talk you out of. Make 'em pay for it!  Wink

Dallas

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« Reply #34 on: May 29, 2007, 02:06:20 PM »

I looked at a Beaver motor home today with a Cat C12. It had a side radiator and louvers on the rear door. But it also had a electric fan on the back, looked like a car rad fan. Just another idea. Tom Y
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