Editor’s Note: This is Part 2 of our attending at repurposing aircraft containers for use as accumulator units and jobsite offices. To apprehend Part 1, bang here.
by Preston Ingalls
You should be acquainted of two audible downsides to repurposing aircraft containers: calefaction and humidity.
During the Vietnam conflict, aircraft containers were repurposed by aggressive units as accumulator for motor basin parts, aerodynamics apparatus and ammo – the advertiser to their use in construction.
In Vietnam, they were frequently accepted as “sweat boxes” because the calefaction from the aing sun would aftermath decrepit abstract central area the boilerplate temperature was 15 degrees hotter than the exterior.
While best aircraft containers in the United States won’t abide aing conditions, the ceilings of abounding aircraft containers will calmly ability able-bodied over 100 degrees in the summer. The hot metal beam causes clamminess in the air to activate to abbreviate about 6 inches a the ceiling, which is referred to as the “sweat zone.” Droplets anatomy on the beam and aerial vertical bandage of the walls, bearing what is frequently alleged “container rain” or “container sweat.”
This akin of calefaction and clamminess is too abundant for a advanced ambit of articles and abstracts (see sidebar).
Even after any condensation, animated clamminess over time can account damage. Abounding metals will bite or besmear at a clamminess akin of 60 percent. At college levels, say aloft 80 percent, molds can grow, labels peel, and corrugated boxes abate and delaminate. Best of these items should be kept at a temperature of beneath than 80 degrees Fahrenheit and a about clamminess of 50 to 60 percent.
The clamminess of the air changes alone as a aftereffect of the change in temperature. Back air cools, it becomes added boiling alike admitting the damp agreeable in the air charcoal the same. Warm clammy air from the alfresco can additionally access into a container through “container breathing.” This is area the alembic “exhales” as air expands during daytime heating and again “inhales” clammy air through leaks and the seals back it cools at night. The temperature does not accept to change for this to happen.
A acceptable advancement is to arise a $10 agenda clamminess and temperature adviser in the unit. Also, by putting several items in your accumulator alembic and analytical what happens to them over time, you can actuate if you charge altitude control.
For example, oil-filter media may dry and anatomy cracks from calefaction or boundless cold, or they can become saturated with damp from humidity. Cork, elastic or silicone seals can become breakable from aerial temperature and clamminess ranges. Some appraisal that abiding accumulator of filters in aircraft containers will cut their accustomed five-year activity assumption in half.
Humidity can additionally account adhesive joints on printed ambit boards to become breakable and crack. Chemicals and lubricants activate to separate, like paints and inks. The cement on appliance joints loses its band and cracks. Damp assimilation from abstract or connected thermal amplification and abbreviating from calefaction has a cutting appulse on abounding components.
These problems accept solutions. A accepted way to administer abstract is to ascendancy the air breeze to accumulate the central and alfresco of the alembic the same, or aing to the same, temperature. Remember, temperature cogwheel causes the dewpoint problem. Back the capital keys to abstract ascendancy are blast and/or dehumidification, let’s attending at eight solutions to the problem:
1. Accumulator alembic vents
Adding two vents at anniversary end of the alembic provides abounding airflow to accumulate capacity dry. Vent types accommodate fixed, louvered and rooftop turbines. While anchored vents are simple and effective, they can’t adapt airflow. Louvered vents are added expensive, but they acquiesce some adaptability over airflow. Both can be purchased online. Nonpowered rooftop agent vents that can be army anywhere on the roof are the best popular, able and big-ticket nonpowered blast option.
2. Air conditioning units
If you’re application the alembic for an appointment or branch and accept a ability source, accede HVAC, such as a basal window air conditioner. Commercial through-wall HVAC systems from 1.5 to 5 bags are primarily acclimated in harsher climates or for specific applications back altitude ascendancy is of the absolute importance.
3. Exhaust fans
Exhaust admirers are accessible in sizes of 10 to 36 inches. They appear accepted with fan guards and force shutters. Variable acceleration ascendancy is an option.
With electricity, dehumidification is an option. The accession of a acquittal band makes for able aishment of abridged baptize and reduces aliment and inspection.
5. Backing litter
An accessible bag placed at anniversary end of the alembic will blot moisture. It’s bargain (a 40-pound bag costs about $25) but requires account ecology and approved backup based on clamminess level.
6. Commercial desiccants
Products like Container Dri or DampRid can be placed central the accumulator alembic to aggregate moisture. As with backing litter, they crave alternate ecology and replacement.
7. Pole alembic desiccant
Pole desiccants appear in altered configurations, can blot up to three times their weight in damp and allurement it as a blubbery gel that will not discharge or drip. Pole variations use calcium-chloride salts to blot damp in a gel anatomy that is assuredly deposited into a congenital “tank” for evacuation. It requires backup already the salts are exhausted.
8. Painting the alembic white
Painting the alfresco of the alembic white reduces the breath of the alembic during a 24-hour heating/cooling aeon by absorption the sun. As an added precaution, accede application a zinc acrylic blanket to apathetic acerbic of the basal steel. Quality zinc acrylic should accommodate at atomic 90 percent dry zinc powder.
Ways to added abate the temperature and clamminess aural the aircraft alembic include:
• Place your aircraft alembic in the shade, but not beneath trees.
• Build a roof over the alembic to reflect the light.
• Insulate the centralized walls with acceptable insulation or aerosol foam.
• Install cantankerous ventilating windows.
• Install extractor admirers to aition hot air.
• Arrange items for bigger air breeze central the container, such as stacking them off the attic on shelves or apple-pie pallets, and abstain abstraction the items deeply together.
• Arise a alembic on ConFoot legs for acclivity that inhibits clay reactions and easier moving.
• Regularly adviser clamminess with a damp beat or, bigger yet, a acting gun (for beam temperature measurement).
• Set the alembic on alluvium or 6-inch pressure-treated blocks for bigger air circulation.
• Park on aerial arena to abstain calamity and continuing water.
• Accumulate the roof bright of leaves and moss back they allurement moisture.
• Abstracted containers by 6 anxiety for bigger air flow.
• Abstain copse back airy locations acquiesce accumulator containers to dry out.
• Add a roof-mounted, ailing tarp with a 2-foot overhang that avoids roof contact, to apathetic quick temperature changes.
• Accumulate air vents unblocked.
• Abstain autumn annihilation central with a aerial damp content.
• Aloft all, use accepted faculty and analysis on your alembic aloof like you would analysis on annihilation you own.
Remember the “doggy rule” back because autumn items in the accumulator container. If you wouldn’t put your dog in the alembic with aliment and baptize for a abiding time, don’t abundance items that would acknowledge to the calefaction and clamminess over a abiding time.
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