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Posted: 9/11/2004 12:07:20 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/11/2004 12:11:23 PM EDT by elkmontarms]
Hi all,

My shop was just finished with basic construction yesterday. I will be wiring, running plumbing and building the paint booth to Dura Coat & KG Gun Kote in the next week of so. I hope to be up and running 100% by Mid Oct. My only problem is I don't have a lot of knowledge about HVAC stuff.

The shop is aprox 800sqft, 10ft high and is fully insulated. We do not have natural gas service but we have electric and the option of a propane tank being located out back if needed. The winters get a lot colder then most people think of in North Alabama. 2 years ago it actualy got down to 0 Deg F. I know that's warm to some of you Yankees but that's damn cold in the south.

The building is small enough that a AC window unit will take care of cooling it . My main problem is the heat. I would like to keep the building above freezing even when I am not there so I guess I would need a theromstat. Do they make a small propane furnace of a small electric furnace for a building like this. If so I would really like to have some links to web sites or any info you can give me.

I would like to keep my budget under $1000 if I can. We will install the unit ourselves.

Thank all of you for the info. Thanks for helping out the cause.

Take Care and God Bless


Elkmont Arms
Link Posted: 9/11/2004 12:58:12 PM EDT
I also forgot to to ask what type of heating system would be the cheapest to run in this type of open shop. Gas, Elec?

Thanks again for any info.
Link Posted: 9/11/2004 1:14:28 PM EDT
I build small building for offshore use. Here is what I have learned.
As a rule of thumb, use 800 sq. ft. per ton of a/c. So you need a 12K btu a/c.

The cheapest heat you could come up with is wood. In N. AL, there ar lots of trees, and wood heats twice, if you know what I mean.
Don't like that idea.
Next cheapest would be gas. A small gas space heater would warm the place nicely.

Next in line would be electric baseboard heaters. This would probably give you the most even heat. You could put these on a thermostat, and it would work out nicely.

I don't have any stuff here at the house, to calc the heater btus, so I can't give you the size.

Link Posted: 9/11/2004 1:25:27 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/11/2004 1:28:44 PM EDT by albob]
I have a shop of about the same size behind my place as well. One word: heat pump. Granted I use the cool side more than the warm side. In the summer I can crank it up 1/2 hour before I'm going in, and it will be cool enough to work in comfort, with it being 105+ outside. In the winter I'll crank the heat and within 15 minutes it will be warm enough. (yeah, it DOES get cold in the desert) The unit I have Is a 1.5 ton Amana window type unit, cost me $700 and change. I could hang meat in in my shop when the a/c is running, and work naked in the winter. Also, it is very energy friendly.

Link Posted: 9/11/2004 1:26:41 PM EDT
Thanks for the info John. I like the idea of wood heat but, because I will be spraying chemicals a couple times a day. I really don't want to have that much open flame around that I can't turn off for a few a while when I am spraying.
Link Posted: 9/11/2004 1:31:19 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/11/2004 1:31:52 PM EDT by elkmontarms]
Thanks ALBOB. You are right it does get cold as hell in the desert. I was stationed at Edwards AFB and let me tell you it got cold at a witches tit at night. It even snowed a few times while I was there. I really can't bitch I was stationed at K.I. Saywer in the U.P. of Michigan for over a year before I moved to Edwards AFB. I use to snowmobile to work in the winter. That should tell you what kind of place that was.
Link Posted: 9/11/2004 2:08:58 PM EDT

Originally Posted By elkmontarms:
Thanks for the info John. I like the idea of wood heat but, because I will be spraying chemicals a couple times a day. I really don't want to have that much open flame around that I can't turn off for a few a while when I am spraying.

You know, I was wondering about that as I was writing. You will have the same problem with gas heat. With the pilot light. That heat pump sounds fine, but when it get real cold, they don't work all that great. We had experiences with heat pumps in Indiana where they just wouldn't heat the place. I think Carrier makes a nice little split heat pump. I know Panasonic does. They are a little pricey, but work nicely. I installed a bunch of them in control rooms for some undersea cable plows.

How do you control fumes from spraying? If you have electrical devices in there, and are operating a spray type production, what do you do to prevent an explosion? I am talking about compressor motors, switches, lighting, ect..

Link Posted: 9/11/2004 2:35:45 PM EDT
The fumes will be a very small amount. I will be spraying with an airbrush into a small homemade paint booth. The fan I will use is for venting chicken houses in the summer and has a fan cooled enclosed explosion proof motor. It was a boat load cheaper then a real paint booth fan. My compressor is going to be outside. As for lighting I am making a small enclosed room for the paint booth so I will mount the lights above the cealing I think that will take care of any problems.

It only takes a few minutes to coat a gun unless you are doing a camo job but even then we only use a few ounces of product. I really don't see that we will have any major problem with fire. If I was painting cars ofr something of that level of volume I would be more careful.

I have seen people take window fans and rig them up in there garages to do homemade paint jobs on ther cars. If they don't blow up I think I will be ok I hope.

Thanks again for al the info. I think I will go with the Ductless AC/Heat Pump Combo.
Link Posted: 9/11/2004 2:39:33 PM EDT
Elec baseboard heat will be the quickest and easiest - and cheapest initially.

But you'll repay that savings to your utility company many times over.

Link Posted: 9/11/2004 2:57:57 PM EDT
Mickey Mouse and I are the people to ask.

Figure 400 square ft per tnn, and run a 2 ton heat pump with about 10 kW of backup toaster coils in the unit. Dealer cost for a 2 ton split system shuld be about $1500 for a basic unit, and more for something fancy. You are gonna be changing a LOT of air filters if you paint in there, even with a ventilation system. IM if you have more Qs. Ops
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