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rallysteve



Member Since: 10 Feb 2014
Location: South Yorks
Posts: 1502

United Kingdom 1984 Defender 90 V8 Petrol PU Caledonian Blue
Mobile Diesel Heater Build

I have had an Eberspacher Airtronic heater in the shed for a while which I had never got around to fitting. The heater in our 110 DCPU does a reasonable job of warming the smallish cab up and since fitting a heated windscreen defrosting/demisting has been easy so I was in two minds if it was actually worth fitting the diesel heater to the 110 at all.

We now have a Howling Moon RTT and Annex which the other half uses whilst she is away at various events throughout the year and i was trying to work out a neat solution for using the heater to warm up the tent. Then I saw one of these at one of the Land Rover shows which got me thinking:
https://www.nakatanenga.de/en/electrics/ap...uminum-box

I did not want to buy the whole kit as I didnt have that kind of money to spare and I already had a heater, so i set about building my own to a similar design (it was the quality of the actual Alubox it was housed in that I particularly liked) so I set about measuring and ordering some parts which brings me to this point.

I am not sure if anyone else is interested at all but I thought I would give some details of the build as it progresses. I have also kept a record of the majority of the parts I have sourced etc.

Like the Nakatenenga version the box is self contained and shall house the leisure battery, fuel and heater. Unlike their version however, I will be mounting the heater controller (an Eberspacher 801) on a remote cable which can be clipped to the RTT poles or ladder to allow control and use of the temperature control rather than the default eberspacher method of measuring the inlet air temp. I am currently undecided whether I will only route the warm air outlet into the tent or recirculate air via the inlet too. I was originally intending to mount the box on the roof rack before travel too but the weight of the leisure battery within it might deter me from doing that!

The required parts (hopefully most of them now):

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The new 60litre Alubox:

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Cutting a hole in the LHS of the box for the combustion air inlet:

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Cutting the holes in the RHS of the box for the Exhaust outlet:

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Cutting the holes in the rear of the box for the warm air outlet and inlet:

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Making up the combustion air inlet: This uses a 1" BSP plastic bilge outlet fitting, a 1" BSPP Backnut and a plastic combustion air silencer. To minimise the length of the fitting I have glued the brass backnut directly to the silencer with araldite allowing me to shorten the thread on the bilge fitting as required:

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Fitting the exhaust outlet:

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Making up the air ducting fittings; I was unable to find a suitable through bulkhead adaptor for the 60mm ducting that allowed ducting to be connected to either side and a flange for screwing onto the box. Therefore I have used 4-off ducting outlets, removed the small spigot from the back and attached them either side of the cut holes. These will be sealed with silicone or this gaskets during final assembly:

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I have fitted a 6-way econoseal plug to the controller and made up a 5m multicore flex for the controller:

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I have then fitted a small 7-way waterproof plug to the other end of which the mating socket will be fitted through the back of the box:

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Rough positioning of the main components within the box; I have gone for an AGM battery so that it can lay on its side to save a little space, the fuel can is a 5litre slimline one. You can see the 60mm ducting fitted and 90deg elbows fitted for the combustion inlet and exhaust:

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The next challenge is to work out exactly how I can fit the exhaust silencer into the space between the elbow and the outlet. The length is almost perfect but the pipe stubs are at different angles and I am not sure if the exhaust flexi will be able to cope/seal properly.

I need to order some aluminium angle to make a clamp for the battery and cut some 2mm sheet to make a shelf onto which the heater, fuel pump, isolator switch and fuse box will fit.

Cheers,
Steve 02' 110 TD5 Double Cab
84' 90 3.9 V8 Caged Pickup Build Thread

Mobile Diesel Heater Build Thread


Last edited by rallysteve on 17th Dec 2019 3:46pm. Edited 1 time in total

Post #806628 17th Dec 2019 2:28pm
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ickle



Member Since: 22 Jul 2010
Location: South Vendee
Posts: 1438

France 2008 Defender 110 Puma 2.4 CSW Alpine White

What a tyres bon idea Rodney!

I don't use my under seat Eberspacher and was going to remove it and sell it, a possible workshop heater to keep my tootsies toastie ?

Post #806636 17th Dec 2019 3:18pm
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Defender SVX



Member Since: 29 Jan 2009
Location: Co Durham
Posts: 599

United Kingdom 2008 Defender 90 Puma 2.4 SVX Soft Top Santorini Black

Really nice build Thumbs Up I’m in two minds to do the same as I’ve a Webasto 5kw knocking around.

Thing is, them Chinese self contained remote timed for around £125 delivered are awfully tempting? Formerly mao99999
16 Focus RS Nitrous Blue.
08 DEFENDER SVX SOFT TOP (SUPERB)
08 DEFENDER 110 DCPU Stornoway grey (Overland Exploration Unit)
04 Jaguar XKR 4.2 Supercharged V8
04 Mazda MX5 1.8 Euphonic
02 DEFENDER 90 TD5 (next years soft top project)
95 DEFENDER 110 CSW 300 TDi Phoenix black (FOR SALE)
95 DEFENDER 90 HT Monti Carlo blue COUNTY 300 TDi (FOR SALE)
?? Mk11 Sankey
67 109" SERIES 2a TUNED 200 TDI(for sale)
64 DAVID BROWN 990 rat look
55 86" SERIES 1

Post #806653 17th Dec 2019 6:10pm
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Co1



Member Since: 19 Aug 2018
Location: North Yorkshire
Posts: 1597

United Kingdom 2013 Defender 90 Puma 2.2 HT Loire Blue

Have you got a link to the Chinese stuff? Instagram @richmond_custom

Post #806714 18th Dec 2019 6:11am
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Defender SVX



Member Since: 29 Jan 2009
Location: Co Durham
Posts: 599

United Kingdom 2008 Defender 90 Puma 2.4 SVX Soft Top Santorini Black

https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?mpre=ht...1987961807

Various types available. Formerly mao99999
16 Focus RS Nitrous Blue.
08 DEFENDER SVX SOFT TOP (SUPERB)
08 DEFENDER 110 DCPU Stornoway grey (Overland Exploration Unit)
04 Jaguar XKR 4.2 Supercharged V8
04 Mazda MX5 1.8 Euphonic
02 DEFENDER 90 TD5 (next years soft top project)
95 DEFENDER 110 CSW 300 TDi Phoenix black (FOR SALE)
95 DEFENDER 90 HT Monti Carlo blue COUNTY 300 TDi (FOR SALE)
?? Mk11 Sankey
67 109" SERIES 2a TUNED 200 TDI(for sale)
64 DAVID BROWN 990 rat look
55 86" SERIES 1

Post #806728 18th Dec 2019 9:35am
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rallysteve



Member Since: 10 Feb 2014
Location: South Yorks
Posts: 1502

United Kingdom 1984 Defender 90 V8 Petrol PU Caledonian Blue

Well since working at home my commute home has become a fair bit quicker and with the clocks changing I have had a bit more time in the shed in the evenings so managed to progress the project some more.

First job was to make some proper mounts for the AGM battery which sits on its side. I made these out of some 2"x2"x1/8" aluminium extrusion. I drilled and tapped this so it can be bolted into the base of the Aluminium box without any protrusion from above. I have also drilled and tapped some holes in the side and made some little aluminium strips which retain a 25mm cam-lock luggage strap which holds the battery down:


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I also cut and fitted some 1 1/2"x1 1/2"x 1/16" aluminium extrusion to the insides of the sides of the box to act as a surface for the intermediate 'base plate' to fit. The base plate is a 2 mm thick piece of aluminium which I had previously made a cardboard template to get the right shape and size (and ensuring I could actually fit it as the top of the box has a sealing lip which means the aperture is smaller:


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I made an additional cutout in the base plate for the top of the fuel can to protrude through:


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I was now able to trial fit the heater on its 90 deg mounting bracket. I had to shorten this bracket so that the heater was low enough to allow the lid of the box to close. As the bracket is stainless, I cut it horizontally and pop-riveted it back together with the two pieces overlapped to neatly shorten it. The Heater is then positioned as far from the front of the box as possible whilst still allowing the fuel can to be lifted out:


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The original Eberspacher fuel pump (with new inlet/outlet connections and a new internal filter) is fitted to side of the box with the correct rubber mounting. This requires a more suitable bolt but I have a limited selection at home and lockdown means getting over to the workshop isnt possible at the moment. I made up some suitable fuel pipes which had a annoying range of sizes required:


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Now that I had finished drilling all of the holes in the box, everything got stripped back out so I could clean all of the swarf and spilt diesel out. I decided that I would also make up a couple more small brackets and a buckle to retain the fuel can. this uses some of the offcut from the luggage strap I had used for the battery strap. I also fitted some neoprene foam where the battery sits:


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I didnt get a picture but I have a small through-panel mount fitted at the bottom of the box with some Anderson type PP15 power connectors in it to allow future expansion (either charging the battery from the vehicle/solar panel or powering of something else off the battery. The connectors/terminals should be good for around 45A.

The base plate had quite a few holes drilled in it to fit the four-way fuse box, battery isolator and various holes with grommets for wiring to pass through. The nice thing about this arrangement is that I could complete all of the wiring on the base plate meaning only the controller connector and battery needed connecting during final assembly. I stupidly didn't take any pictures of the wiring as I was keen to finish assembling before I ran out of daylight! All of the wiring beneath is wrapped in automotive grade fabric harness tape to keep it neat:


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I have used a CTEK comfort connector to enable easy charging from my MXS10 too:


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I was able to now do a final trial assembly of it all for a test. The current exhaust setup is just a straight length of flexi pipe as I need to weld up a more complex one to incorporate the Webasto stainless silencer in the tight space. I put a bit of heat lagging on the pipe however:


Click image to enlarge


First test was surprisingly successful, unit fired straight up (i had already bled the fuel) and was pumping out nice hot air within a few minutes. Other than the obvious exhaust noise without the silencer, the unit is quite quiet with the lid closed.

Other than the exhaust I have a few tasks to do still:
- I need to take the air inlet/outlet, combustion inlet and exhaust fittings back out so they can be properly sealed onto the box to make them more weatherproof;
- I need to get/make some blanking caps for the above for when it is not in use;
- I need to fit a breather to the fuel can as it is currently sealed;
- I need to get another identical fuel can and modify accordingly so we can swap an empty can out easily;
- I have some heat reflective matting down at the workshop which I am going to line the box with around the exhaust area;
- I need to make a mount for the controller so it can be clipped onto either the ladder or roof tent frame.

Very pleased with how it has turned out though. Not much space to spare! It is quite a bit heavier than I expected though, i have used aluminium throughout to minimise weight and help heat dissipation but the AGM battery weighs about 25kg alone!

Hopefully this is of some interest to people.

Cheers,
Steve 02' 110 TD5 Double Cab
84' 90 3.9 V8 Caged Pickup Build Thread

Mobile Diesel Heater Build Thread

Post #824090 8th Apr 2020 1:17pm
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LandRoverAnorak



Member Since: 17 Jul 2011
Location: Surrey
Posts: 8696

United Kingdom 2013 Defender 110 Puma 2.2 USW Orkney Grey

That looks great.

Is the weight likely to be an issue for your wife? I'm assuming she's alone at the events that you mention. Would a couple of wheels on one end help, so that it can be manoeuvred like a sack truck? Darren

2013 Defender 110 USW XS
2013 Discovery 4 XS

"You came in that thing? You're braver than I thought!" - Princess Leia

MY 110 USW BUILD THREAD - MY 200tdi 90 BUILD THREAD - Instagram: @landroveranorak

Post #824116 8th Apr 2020 2:40pm
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rallysteve



Member Since: 10 Feb 2014
Location: South Yorks
Posts: 1502

United Kingdom 1984 Defender 90 V8 Petrol PU Caledonian Blue

Thanks Darrel Very Happy

Weight will be an issue for her for definite. A good idea about the wheels though thanks.

When she is away at events she will often be taking the Ifor Williams box trailer so the unit on wheels will work quite well in that as it has a ramp.

My previous plan was to make up a frame from some steel angle section which the base of the box will fit snugly into. I was going to fit this to the roofrack (next to the tent) when she is going away to try and avoid having to lift it in/out of the car when she gets there.

Cheers,
Steve 02' 110 TD5 Double Cab
84' 90 3.9 V8 Caged Pickup Build Thread

Mobile Diesel Heater Build Thread

Post #824119 8th Apr 2020 2:51pm
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kmac



Member Since: 07 Oct 2009
Location: Middlesex
Posts: 1076

United Kingdom 2009 Defender 110 Puma 2.4 USW Santorini Black

Awesome build quality - well done!!

The Alu box on its own is likely to cost more than the Chinese clones.

Post #824122 8th Apr 2020 2:54pm
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excossack



Member Since: 22 Feb 2012
Location: North West
Posts: 4637

United Kingdom 1999 Defender 110 Td5 SW Caledonian Blue

rallysteve wrote:
Thanks Darrel Very Happy

Weight will be an issue for her for definite. A good idea about the wheels though thanks.

When she is away at events she will often be taking the Ifor Williams box trailer so the unit on wheels will work quite well in that as it has a ramp.

My previous plan was to make up a frame from some steel angle section which the base of the box will fit snugly into. I was going to fit this to the roofrack (next to the tent) when she is going away to try and avoid having to lift it in/out of the car when she gets there.

Cheers,
Steve


Maybe a smaller battery to reduce the weight or, the option to leave the battery in the trailer and then have an extension lead with Anderson plugs either end to connect to the heater box (assuming your Wife is not miles away from the trailer?) 1999 Defender TD5 110

Regards
John M0VAZ
Econet Station 48 no clock

Post #824125 8th Apr 2020 3:37pm
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rallysteve



Member Since: 10 Feb 2014
Location: South Yorks
Posts: 1502

United Kingdom 1984 Defender 90 V8 Petrol PU Caledonian Blue

Thanks Kmac Thumbs Up

Eccossack, i picked that particular battery due to it being the largest size I could fit in the box. From my estimates, the capacity of the battery should give around the same amount of heater operation as one 5litre can of diesel (around 10hours of intermittent use hopefully).

When i realised the weight of it, i did toy with the idea of mounting the battery in the vehicle and connecting the heater to the vehicle with an umbilical cable but I would then be wasting a lot of box space and it isn't quite as neat solution. The construction doesnt lend itself to frequent fitting/removal of the battery either.

Not that it is likely to see much use this year with the current situation, but I will see how she gets on with it as it is.

Appreciate the suggestions though cheers,

Steve 02' 110 TD5 Double Cab
84' 90 3.9 V8 Caged Pickup Build Thread

Mobile Diesel Heater Build Thread

Post #824130 8th Apr 2020 4:06pm
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rallysteve



Member Since: 10 Feb 2014
Location: South Yorks
Posts: 1502

United Kingdom 1984 Defender 90 V8 Petrol PU Caledonian Blue

Got a G1/4 breather fitted tonight. The good thing about using a decent quality fuel can is the tick plastic. Ran a tap through it no problem and breather screwed up tightly by hand. The breather is intended for mobile hydraulic tanks so has a special baffle system in it to stop fluid splashing out which should be ideal for this application:


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A few pictures of the other bits i forgot previously:


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Also had an idea for some blanking caps for the ducting inlet/outlet. Crudely filed the thread out of a 20litre drum cap. Fits quite well so might pursue this idea and get a couple of new ones.


Click image to enlarge


Cheers 02' 110 TD5 Double Cab
84' 90 3.9 V8 Caged Pickup Build Thread

Mobile Diesel Heater Build Thread

Post #824150 8th Apr 2020 5:34pm
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