Cotswold gas tank

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Post by redvwcamper on Fri Mar 02, 2018 7:02 pm

Help needed please
Is there any way I can connect a gas ( spanish ) bottle to my vehicle
As we are parked on a site in Spain and when we run out of
gas we have to move from the site and travel 10 miles to fill the tank
Thank you in advance
Gordon Holloway
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Post by Gromit on Fri Mar 02, 2018 7:09 pm

Many people feed in through the BBQ outlet (assuming you have one) but you MUST use a bottle top regulator. If you feed high pressure gas into the system, you will be on the evening News!!!  happyno

Without a BBQ inlet it can be done, but it's probably easier to go and get a top up. 10 miles is not that far after all.
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Post by Cymro on Fri Mar 02, 2018 7:28 pm

Yes - there's a recent thread on the Forum explaining in detail how to feed gas from a regulated propane bottle, via the external BBQ outlet on the side of the van, into the van. You must, however, ensure that the van's outlet pipe from its underslung tank is turned off (via the master, knurled tap or - if you have one - by turning the tap at the van's regulator). Both of them are likely to be underneath the van.
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Post by Gromit on Fri Mar 02, 2018 9:22 pm

Cymro wrote:Yes - there's a recent thread on the Forum explaining in detail how to feed gas from a regulated propane bottle, via the external BBQ outlet on the side of the van, into the van. You must, however, ensure that the van's outlet pipe from its underslung tank is turned off (via the master, knurled tap or - if you have one - by turning the tap at the van's regulator). Both of them are likely to be underneath the van.
Hmmmmmm????

Thinking about it a bit more - maybe a bit more explanation would be good - assuming I get it right!  hugegrins

Low pressure gas is being introduced into the system from the external bottle.

If the underslung tank was empty it would still be full of gas (if that makes sense) so it would just sit there unaffected as low pressure gas was introduced.

If the underslung tank is not empty, then (as Cymro says) you should isolate it or you may well continue (unknowingly) to use gas from the tank, rather than the bottle you have connected via the BBQ point.

Am I right - I've always loved a mental puzzle!  hugegrins
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Post by Cymro on Fri Mar 02, 2018 11:25 pm

That sounds entirely logical, Dave.. I'm just uncertain about the potential effect on the vehicle's regulator (if any) of gas flowing in reverse, were there to be a difference between the pressures of the inflowing gas and the residual gas in the tank. The bottle's regulator may not match that of the vehicle's, for example. Could such a reverse affect the vehicle's regulator? It just seems a failsafe precaution. I suspect the risk is negligible, but I would nevertheless turn it off.
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Post by Bad Penny on Sat Mar 03, 2018 7:42 am

Would this system work without an underslung gas tank?  It is something I have often thought about, but not sure of the safety aspect.

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Post by bolero boy on Sat Mar 03, 2018 8:15 am

There is a far simpler way...
Gaslow actually produce a hose for connecting an external bottle directly into the filler.....

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

in Spain, I reckon you would need a Jumbo adapter to fit on the bottle and then connect the hose as above...

As in the text, even with an external bottle connected, your van will use the gas in your normal underslung tank first until empty, then use the gas from the external bottle.

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Post by redvwcamper on Sat Mar 03, 2018 8:27 am

I have been told that when the tank is empty how will the bottle that’s attached fully empty ?
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Post by bolero boy on Sat Mar 03, 2018 10:12 am

Read the link.....
The external bottle can't pass liquid gas to the fixed tank but it will 'gas off' and flow down the pipe through the filler into the fixed tank and out of through the regulator into the van....

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Post by Gromit on Sat Mar 03, 2018 10:21 am

bolero boy wrote:There is a far simpler way...
Gaslow actually produce a hose for connecting an external bottle directly into the filler.....

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

in Spain, I reckon you would need a Jumbo adapter to fit on the bottle and then connect the hose as above...

As in the text, even with an external bottle connected, your van will use the gas in your normal underslung tank first until empty, then use the gas from the external bottle.
And that's the huge disadvantage of that system for many users.

It makes a lot more sense to retain the LPG in the underslung tank, and use only from the external bottle while static on site. Otherwise the underslung tank is permanently empty, so you have no gas available for when you disconnect the external bottle and move to the next site.
No point in stopping for a quick brew to break the journey, as you can't boil the kettle!  shrugg 

The hose is designed for use with the empty one of a pair of re-fillable cylinders - not for an underslung tank. It would work, but only when the underslung tank was empty!!

It's certainly not an option I would choose, although of course others might consider it acceptable if they don't fully understand the none-too-clear advertising verbage, and fail to think it through sufficiently.  Whistle1
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Post by Wightman on Sat Mar 03, 2018 11:54 am

Hi All

Think the snow has addled my poor little brain cells on this

So you get a full gas bottle and connect to BBQ outlet - is there no one way valve to prevent gas being "blown" back in?

Then you say to turn off the outlet from the main tank so if you have to do this surely it means it's a very dangerous move?

Then the general opinion is not to use the gaslow adapter mentioned above unless the main tank is completely empty - so why does this not fill the empty tank as it's connected to the input?

Sorry if I've got my thick hat on this morning

Best bet is have a bigger tank fitted as we've done or "pop" along to the gas supplier - it sounds a lot safer!!

Brent Thawing IoW
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Post by Spospe on Sat Mar 03, 2018 12:20 pm

To use an external gas bottle to supplement an underslung gas tank.

1) turn off the master tap on the underslung tank. This will prevent any gas either entering, or leaving said tank. The reason for this is to avoid emptying the underslung tank if it is not already empty.

2) Connect the external bottle to the bbq point via its own, bottle mounted regulator.

3) enjoy new supply of gas.
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Post by Paulmold on Sat Mar 03, 2018 12:33 pm

So we are not talking about filling underslung tank from an outside bottle? Merely getting gas from an external source to run appliances after turning off the underslung tank supply (whether empty or not).

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Post by Cymro on Sat Mar 03, 2018 12:46 pm

Yes, Paul. Spospe's description is succinct and accurate.

Gromit has suggested circumstances where to do the above might be convenient: when your tank is running very low, and you want to preserve the remaining gas for use when en route to make a cuppa etc. So use the bottle when on site, and use the tank's remainder en route until you can refill.

I shall be using the same technique in slightly different circumstances. A long trip in April to the Hebrides, with no LPG filling stations and limited hook-up. I fear that my tank won't last the holiday until I can refill again on mainland; so a spare bottle in reserve may have to be connected externally when on site, near the end of the holiday. And use a thermos when en route.

I just don't know how long the tankful will last in our weather.

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Post by Gromit on Sat Mar 03, 2018 1:27 pm

Wightman wrote:Hi Brent
Easier to reply within this quote.


Think the snow has addled my poor little brain cells on this (Couldn't possibly comment!  Whistle1 )

So you get a full gas bottle and connect to BBQ outlet - is there no one way valve to prevent gas being "blown" back in? Blown back in where? I don't understand what you mean. It will  be going in at low pressure (thanks to a bottle top regulator) so the van's gas system will behave exactly as before. Simply a matter of low pressure gas being fed in at a different point in the system.

Then you say to turn off the outlet from the main tank so if you have to do this surely it means it's a very dangerous move? No danger, just inconvenience if you don't, because the underslung tank will completely empty - and the purpose of the exercise (as I would want to use it) is to save whatever LPG you have left in the underslung for use when en route, and use from the external bottle while you are static on site.

Then the general opinion is not to use the gaslow adapter mentioned above unless the main tank is completely empty - so why does this not fill the empty tank as it's connected to the input? It can't because the gas is drawn from the external bottle as a gas, and at low pressure - not as a liquid. The only way to fill the empty underslung tank is to use liquid gas under pressure from a pump.

Best bet is have a bigger tank fitted as we've done Wish we could, but Chris Wise of Autogas2000 investigated, and there's not enough room for a tank of a worthwhile size

or "pop" along to the gas supplier - it sounds a lot safer!! No safer, but often a lot easier than all the faffing about!

Brent Thawing IoW

Hope that helps. Thawing here, but very slowly.
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Post by harrysp on Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:00 pm

I know this is done on Spanish sites for long stay people who can’t/don’t want to go out to fill their tank. But to tour with a spare bottle how do you carry the bottle safely between stops when there is no gas locker in which to secure it? Sorry, this may be obvious but I’m not sure.

H
Cymro wrote:Yes, Paul. Spospe's description is succinct and accurate.

Gromit has suggested circumstances where to do the above might be convenient: when your tank is running very low, and you want to preserve the remaining gas for use when en route to make a cuppa etc. So use the bottle when on site, and use the tank's remainder en route until you can refill.

I shall be using the same technique in slightly different circumstances. A long trip in April to the Hebrides, with no LPG filling stations and limited hook-up. I fear that my tank won't last the holiday until I can refill again on mainland; so a spare bottle in reserve may have to be connected externally when on site, near the end of the holiday. And use a thermos when en route.

I just don't know how long the tankful will last in our weather.

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Post by Paulmold on Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:27 pm

Yes I agree. It's a good idea and glad I've learnt about it but I've no room to carry a bottle around.

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Post by bolero boy on Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:40 pm

Gromit wrote:
bolero boy wrote:There is a far simpler way...
Gaslow actually produce a hose for connecting an external bottle directly into the filler.....

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

in Spain, I reckon you would need a Jumbo adapter to fit on the bottle and then connect the hose as above...

As in the text, even with an external bottle connected, your van will use the gas in your normal underslung tank first until empty, then use the gas from the external bottle.
And that's the huge disadvantage of that system for many users.

It makes a lot more sense to retain the LPG in the underslung tank, and use only from the external bottle while static on site. Otherwise the underslung tank is permanently empty, so you have no gas available for when you disconnect the external bottle and move to the next site.
No point in stopping for a quick brew to break the journey, as you can't boil the kettle!  shrugg 

The hose is designed for use with the empty one of a pair of re-fillable cylinders - not for an underslung tank. It would work, but only when the underslung tank was empty!!

It's certainly not an option I would choose, although of course others might consider it acceptable if they don't fully understand the none-too-clear advertising verbage, and fail to think it through sufficiently.  Whistle1
dave, it really isn't very difficult....
If you're running low but don't want to go off site, conmect the bottle as stated.
If the tank runs out before you leave, no problem, you'll be using gas from the external one.
When you decide to leave the site, visit an LPG station prior to your cuppa.
If you don't want to leave the site and you don't have a BBQ to 'cobble something together with' (as this will certainly bypass the regulator unless you're going to get a regulated supply for the external bottle...) then you'll need that external bottle and a 'proper' way of getting gas into the vehicle.....via the van regulator seems a good idea to me....and to Gaslow, it seems.
FWIW, my locker can hold two 11/13kg bottles. I have an 11kg Gaslow and a 2hd hose/adaptor ready for a Spanish bottle should I not want to take the van offsite. I also have a change over valve so can switch to the spaninsh on straight away and save the LPG in the Gaslow.
Best of all worlds...?

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Post by Cymro on Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:43 pm

harrysp wrote:But to tour with a spare bottle how do you carry the bottle safely between stops when there is no gas locker in which to secure it?

Spot on, Harrysp.  I don't want to drive with a gas bottle in the bathroom, or up in the Luton, or, indeed, anywhere inside. And of course it can't go outside on bike rack or roof!! I raised the problem in a recent thread. Moreover, there's no easy way to strap down such a gas cylinder inside.

My subtle plan to have a reserve supply of gas can only be achieved thanks to the generous offer of the friends with whom we are going on holiday to carry a spare bottle in the external gas locker of their Clubman.

Which begs the question: if they have 2 bottles, one of which they think will be spare, how come I'm worried about how long our 20 litres tank will last?!  The fact is that this will be the first time since buying the van that we'll be relying on gas for an extended period, and in April in the Southern Hebrides, without access to a refill pump. Maybe our tankful will be sufficient; maybe it won't. So I've been gald of the chance to explore the issue of coupling a bottle via the BBQ point, and I'm most grateful to all contributors.

I've bought the necessary connectors, and have a spare propane regulator to which I've joined a short pipe with the connector, which can then couple to my long BBQ pipe to the van.  All set up. But I hope I won't have to resort to it!

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Post by bolero boy on Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:51 pm

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Post by Paulmold on Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:59 pm

I can see us all fitting one of those inside our vans !!

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Post by bolero boy on Sat Mar 03, 2018 3:03 pm

Depends how badly folk want an increased gas supply...?
I'm answering the point raised above and obviously Gaslow are answering a customer demand by building it...
Considering many folk carry BBQ, bikes, chairs, tables and the like inside their vans, due to poor storage or narrow access, I'm guessing a bottle in a sealed box would be ok in a seat box?

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Post by PLOUGHLIN on Sat Mar 03, 2018 3:05 pm

20l is about 9kg. My van can carry 26kg (2x13kg), but normally I use 12kg (2x6kg). Presumably your previous vans used bottles, how did you get on with those?

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Post by Gromit on Sat Mar 03, 2018 3:15 pm

bolero boy wrote:dave, it really isn't very difficult....

When you decide to leave the site, visit an LPG station prior to your cuppa.

 . . . a 'proper' way of getting gas into the vehicle.....via the van regulator seems a good idea to me....and to Gaslow, it seems.
Wish I was as clever as you Chris.  hugegrins

I don't find it at all difficult, but you seem to be confused - probably because you are used to using a twin refillable system on a Carthago and you have no experience of an A/S underslung tank system!

Firstly, would you really want to be travelling with no gas on board, probably in a foreign country where it might be difficult to find any open LPG stations? I certainly wouldn't, and I suspect I am not alone.

Is the Gaslow hose a "proper" way of getting gas into an A/S system when it has been specifically designed for use with twin refillable bottles? I quite agree that it would work, BUT at the expense of emptying the underslung tank first! I don't understand why you don't consider that to be an inconvenience, when it's so easily avoidable. (I presume you did understand my earlier post? scratch head ) 

Sorry, but you seem totally fixated on the Gaslow hose as the ideal solution, but it simply isn't practical for the needs of many A/S owners with an underslung tank.
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Post by Cymro on Sat Mar 03, 2018 3:20 pm

Thanks, Peter, that's useful. I used to carry 2 x 6kg CalorLites in my Clubman. Thus my current tank is only 75% of that. That fact now gives me perspective.

Fact is that we never went away in the Clubman for an extended period using mainly gas, where there was no possibility of buying a refill (save once in Scandinavia in summer where I took 1 Calor, which we used and couldn't, of course, replace, and one Camping Gaz - for which I had the devil of a job finding a supply although I thought they were ubiquitous.) 

So I'm twitching a bit!  I've now been able to book most sites so as to have hookup (preferred for medical CPAP reasons) and whilst the supply may not be 16 amps, I'm sure it'll take some pressure off the gas supply, enabling us to eke it out. Having the potential for connecting an external bottle (for which replaements will be available) is a comfort.

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