Can I make sure I have this gas thing straight?

Discussion in 'Tech/Mech General' started by DBSilverfox, Jun 12, 2010.

  1. DBSilverfox

    DBSilverfox Read Only Funster

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    Hi all, I think i am now understanding the recent threads regarding gas compatibility, but as a newbie, I want to make sure...

    I have a regulator fitted to the motorhome and connect to the gas bottle with pigtails. The bottle is propane.

    On the continent I have two choices if I need to replace gas - buy a new bottle over there or re-fill my existing bottle. If i have understood the discussion correctly:

    1. If i buy a new bottle over there, i might need a different pigtail so I can attach to it.
    2. If I try and re-fill over there I might need a converter to attach to the gas bottle so they can re-fill it with their fillers.

    both of these seem to be available..?

    Just to extend the depth of my ignorance... I have propane now. Am I able to replace that with butane or the LPG they put in cars, if that is more freely available? Are there any issues if the bottle is not completely empty, or do they just mix? Or do I need a different bottle? do they use different filler types depending on if it is propane, butane, or car LPG? I read somewhere that LPG for cars is a mix of propane and butane anyway, so I assume it is OK?

    Thanks for any info

    David
     
  2. haganap

    haganap Funster Life Member

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    HI DBS you are sort of right..... so I will try and make it clearer---

    If you want gas when you run out then you need a french bottle, you will need a French pigtail made up.

    If you get a refillable bottle as some use (not gaslow) then you fill it up at an LPG pump.

    If you are asking how, either PM andyman or wildman (roger) as they do this all the time, however if you are asking how then probably better to get a gaslow bottle fitted whereby it has a built in protector to prevent over filling, just get one bottle if you want, I have one refillable (large) and a spare calor lite.

    However how long are you going for?

    In summer we would rarely use half a bottle and we are a family of four.

    In winter when we ski, in the freezing cold, we only get through the equivalent of two big bottles in a fortnight.:thumb:
     
  3. DBSilverfox

    DBSilverfox Read Only Funster

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    Thanks Haganap (and glad to see the dog the right way up again ...)

    Well, I cannot see me going away for more than 2-3 weeks as I am still working. I have one propane bottle now, with room for another in the locker. But only having had the MH for a couple of weeks I have no idea how long they last. Maybe it is something I need not worry about - just buy the second bottle and relax

    But I hate not knowing - just in case :Eeek:

    David
     
  4. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    Hi Dave is your bottle a refillable one with a built in cut off valve ?
    Yes you can buy a couple of fitting to use on the continent
    yes you fill using garage LPG pumps that have a mix of propane and butane (no probs ):thumb:

    Are you getting confused with filling propane bottle using a gas filling adaptor ? if so
    GAS ADAPTER
    There are no joints, pipes, knuckles valves or floats to go wrong or leak, just a simple well engineered adapter that screws onto your bottle
    Use a two bottle system ie 1 full to replace empty 1, just as you did years ago.
    Remember to refill only total empty bottles to avoid overfilling.
    Refill LPG bottles are only filled to 80% of total volume.
    One litre of LPG weights ca. 500 grams.
    13 kg bottle at 80% = 26 litres
    6 kg bottle @ 80 % = 12 ltrs
    3.9 kg bottle @ 80 % = 7.8 ltrs
    Calor gas on there web site even say that bottles can be filled up to 87 % so this will allow for any difference in temperatures!!!!
    Fasten the bottle in the van
    Fit adapter
    Open valve
    Fit filling gun turning 90 degrees C,Wise and lock on/cock
    Dispense required amount of gas (see above)
    Close valve
    Uncock turn 90 degrees anti CW,Disengage filling gun
    Replace gun into holder and pay for fuel
    Remove adapter and store for next use
    If you cannot follow these simple instructions then do not buy a filling adapter and carry on paying through the nose for refill bottles!!!
    If you can understand and follow the above then buy an adapter and start saving money
    terry
     
  5. haganap

    haganap Funster Life Member

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    the best option for convineince is without a doubt having a gaslow system. not cheap but one you have it its yours. You then never have to worry and whats more you can actually save money and over a LONG time get your money back. Before if you had half a bottle and you were going away you would go and get a full bottle wasting the half thats left. With Gaslow you simply fill it up at the lpg pump and jobs done. I have put as little at 80p in mine before:Blush:
     
  6. DBSilverfox

    DBSilverfox Read Only Funster

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    How do I tell. just had a look and it is a big red steel bottle with a "head" on it that has a knob to turn gas on and off, and an outlet connected to my pigtail. On the bottle it states a weight of 8.3 kg, and that is contains 6kg of propane - does that help?

    As I am totally new (never caravanned or had gas or anything), I have assumed it is re-fillable, but maybe it is one you just swap for new?

    David
     
  7. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    Hi David it sounds like you have a refillable bottle, but would need a pic ? to confirm ?
    terry
     
  8. DBSilverfox

    DBSilverfox Read Only Funster

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    should be attached....:RollEyes:
     

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  9. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    Hi it looks like a mth refillable bottle (not sure on make ) but a easy way to check if fill / cut off float is working is let the bottle empty completely then fill it :thumb: It should stop at or around, before 12 ltrs
    terry
     
  10. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Just got back after 4 weeks - our single gaslow 12kg tank is still showing green. 7 weeks last year and did not have to fill up.
     
  11. lebesset

    lebesset Read Only Funster

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    DB silverfox , you head must be swimming if you have just started !

    but there is a thread that covers all this


    http://www.motorhomefun.co.uk/motorhome-chat/23938-de-facto-standard-european-gas-thread.html

    have a read and you will see that it is really easy now

    your regulator is for butane/propane / or lpg

    FOR THE MOMENT KEEP IT SIMPLE...just do 2 things before you go off to france

    check that your locker will take an extra bottle of slightly bigger diameter [ 303mm]

    go to a caravan/ motorhome or parts dealer near you and buy a pigtail for a calor 4.5Kg dumpy butane bottle to take with you ; this is the normal european fitment , you can get this pigtail at any caravan dealer in france but they can be few and far between

    then if you get low in france , go to your nearest intermarche [ 1000 + in france ] and get an energas bottle , change pigtail , connect , and away you go ; personally I would get one anyway , the gas is half the uk price ! for the moment the bottle is on offer at €1 instead of the normal €5 ; availability list here


    http://www.energaz.fr/



    when you are back home you can look at getting change over adaptors like everyone uses so that you can keep 2 bottles connected



    ps check you have a spanner for unscrewing the pigtail at the regulator end

    can you get in that 303mm bottle ?

    and doesn't your existing bottle say calor on it ? just a standard bottle that you exchange [ in the uk ] when it is empty?
     
  12. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    David,

    I can't remember the year of your Autoquest 100 but if it is like ours (2003/4 model) then the gas locker is the size to take two 6 Kg Calor (or equivalent) cylinders. When we first got our van I found that I could only attach the rubber pipe (from the regulator) to a cylinder in one of the two positions (can't remember if it was rear or fore now) because I could only get the gas spanner in one way. That meant taking both out and swapping them round when one ran out.

    Because the regulator is mounted below the top of the cylinder (yours look similar in your photo) I decided to purchase a stainless steel pipe to replace the rubber one before any potential problems occurred. That has the added advantage of having a hand wheel at the end which attaches to the cylinder and means swapping from empty to full bottle is much easier.

    We've looked at having Gaslow fitted but the cost is too high - it would take a heck of a lot of Calor replacements to make up the money.

    I've also considered refilling the Calor bottles but rejected that because of potential problems. I know many people have done it successfully for years without any problems but, logically, that means only that no problems have occurred so far and not that there won't be a problem next time and I prefer not to take the chance :Smile: hardhat

    Graham
     
  13. haganap

    haganap Funster Life Member

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    although Graham is correct in terms of cost of Gaslow and returning money, the one thing that can not be beaten is the simplicity and the convenience of the system that needs to be considered. If money is not an issue, I promise you it will be the best few hundred pounds you ever spent.:thumb:
     
  14. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    I totally agree Paul - but I'd rather have the few hundred quid. Unless the lottery comes up tonight that is :BigGrin:

    Graham
     
  15. DBSilverfox

    DBSilverfox Read Only Funster

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    sorry guys - domestic life got in the way of real life for a while.

    The cylinder says "Macgas" on it. Graham, mine is 2005, but the locker will take 2 cylinders, and currently the pigtail I have fitted has a knob on it to attach, so I am not needing a spanner to attach to the cylinder.

    Reading all your great advice - and I really do appreciate it (my head is not swimming, it feels like it is going down for the third time! ) . The options seem to be:

    1. Fit a Gaslow and fill point, which should mean i can top up with LPG anywhere and the cost looks to be around 200 quid

    2. Get a French pigtail and either buy a dumpy butane now or wait till in France and get one as needed (provided the dumpy fits the locker)

    3. Get an LPG filling adaptor so that I can do the same as the Gaslow option but using the existing bottle, the difference being cost, and the fact that doing it this way I need to be aware of fill levels instead of the Gaslow system controlling it.

    Is that about it?

    All the best

    David
     
  16. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    Same arrangement as ours then David :Smile: I should have looked closer at your photo - I can see the hand wheel now when I look properly - similar to ours :Smile:

    I think your 1, 2, 3 are about the long and short of it.

    Graham
     
  17. Ant&Debs

    Ant&Debs Read Only Funster

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    I agree with Haganap Ref Simpicity of Gaslow. Its also good to be aware that some garages wont allow filling of Gas Cylinders.

    Ants&Debs
     
  18. MikeandCarolyn

    MikeandCarolyn Read Only Funster

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    My head was swimming with all the details about French bottles/adaptors/Gaslow etc-so I thought it through,and came up with this solution :) my gas locker will hold 2x13 kg containers-that's a lot of space that I could really use.So,if I put a fixed tank underneath,I'd have the convenience of LPG and extra storage space :BigGrin:
    I had a 40ltr tank fitted before Carmarthen meet,used it all that weekend (heating on most morns and eves) and have just come back from 5 weeks in France.We use a lot of gas !! Carolyn cooks as if we were at home-her hobby is cooking and she loves buying ingredients in markets abroad-we heat water for showers and washing up etc and fridge is on 'gas' more than it is on electric.
    I filled gas tank on last day in France-it took 20ltrs (10kg)-I'm well pleased-for me the ease and convenience outweigh the intial cost.

    Mike
     
  19. DBSilverfox

    DBSilverfox Read Only Funster

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    Thanks Graham - I am convinced everything is simple, it is only a matter of cutting through the fog a bit :Smile:

    "I agree with Haganap Ref Simpicity of Gaslow. Its also good to be aware that some garages wont allow filling of Gas Cylinders." - Not worked out how to insert multiple quotes yet.. :Doh:

    I am leaning towards the Gaslow solution on the basis of refill cost once the initial cost is paid, and will investigate further when i go back to Fullers to get my reversing sensors checked under warranty..

    Thanks everyone - and i hope the thread has helped others as well

    David
     
  20. DBSilverfox

    DBSilverfox Read Only Funster

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    Thanks Mike - add an option 4 just as I think i got it sussed :Doh:
    :Rofl1::Rofl1::Rofl1:
     
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