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Old 17-02-2016, 10:53   #1
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Portable AC unit?

Hi, I have recently bought a Morgan 33 OI Pilothouse that I'm going to live on in Florida. Can anyone advise me of a decent portable air con' unit that will keep me comfortable in the miserable heat and humidity of the FL summer please. I'm hoping to to pay no more than $500-$600.

Thanks for any advice!
Mark
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Old 17-02-2016, 11:20   #2
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Re: Portable AC unit?

Go to an home improvement store and buy a window unit AC, as big of one that you can mount and power and figure out a way to mount it.
I don't know of anything else in your price range, and a window unit actually works pretty well, issue is installation.
Most seem to mount them in the companionway and step over them when getting in and out of the boat.
I'd look for one that is reverse cycle, that is, it can provide heat as well as cooling.
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Old 17-02-2016, 11:21   #3
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Re: Portable AC unit?

There are marine A/c units for sale and resale all the time. I bought a used one in good condition for $350. West Marine sells a new unit for I think $600 or so. Bacons in Annapolis has a dozen or so used in their warehouse.
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Old 17-02-2016, 11:34   #4
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Re: Portable AC unit?

Why is it that this is the first thing that comes to mind with this type of question?
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Old 17-02-2016, 11:48   #5
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Re: Portable AC unit?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Annapolis View Post
est Marine sells a new unit for I think $600 or so.

I don't doubt you, you are in the business, but do you have a link?

I believe by the time I bought everything to install a 16K, vent kit, thru hull, water pump etc., I feel sure I was up to $2,000.
AC alone is I think about $1,500?
Smaller is of course cheaper, but not a whole lot.
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Old 17-02-2016, 12:02   #6
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Thumbs up Re: Portable AC unit?

You are talking about installing an ac system whereas the OP is speaking of a portable "box" air conditioner. I am not in the air conditioning business but I do believe that a portable unit for a boat is terrific mainly because it sits on top of a hatch and blows below the hatch. Installing a regular household window box unit requires using the companionway or a side window--which may work on some boats but certainly not a Morgan 33. It may make sense to install a complete AC system and it may run more efficiently and comfortably but it will cost A LOT more!!!
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Old 17-02-2016, 12:49   #7
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Re: Portable AC unit?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Annapolis View Post
You are talking about installing an ac system whereas the OP is speaking of a portable "box" air conditioner. I am not in the air conditioning business but I do believe that a portable unit for a boat is terrific mainly because it sits on top of a hatch and blows below the hatch. ..
And how do you power it on a 33ft boat, out of the marina? The OP is talking about living on a boat so I suppose it will be most of the time at the marina but most when they use the boat are not at the marina.
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Old 17-02-2016, 12:56   #8
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Re: Portable AC unit?

You will have to ask the OP what he plans to do underway but he did specify "portable." A Morgan 33 is a BIG 33' boat (I sailed one from Annapolis to Puerto Rico) so I think he has room for a full blown air conditioner, but what say ye Mark? You are the OP, so tell us what you have found please. Heck--there is probably enough room for a generator to power the portable unit!.... One could simply sail north for the summer....but seriously, installing a proper AC system will save money and hassle and electric bills in the long run and operate more comfortable and quietly.
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Old 17-02-2016, 13:09   #9
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Re: Portable AC unit?

Air Conditioning | West Marine

I doubt you're going to get into an on-board system for under $1,100 US. The contents don't say anything about ductwork, grills, throughulls, seacock, raw water strainer, hoses or a circulation pump.

I would suspect you'd be a lot closer to $2,000 to get the boxes out the door, not delivered or installed.

Pompanette makes a portable 'Through-hatch' that looks like it can be taken in for cruising and will sit relatively out of the way when installed. However, even that is around $1,300

http://www.westmarine.com/buy/pompan...r--15970056(US).
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Old 17-02-2016, 13:44   #10
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Re: Portable AC unit?

I am assuming this is for use while plugged into shore power at a marina.

Not portable but if you have a place for the outside unit these work well. The big thing is to be careful about the condensation drain which will also be an issue with a window unit.
Google "Mini Split Air conditioning unit". They also come as dual a/c and heat pump units but I don't think you will make your $600 max that way.
Ductless Mini Splits

I have seen several window type units mounted on the hatch over the v berth or salon. It takes a little building of a box that becomes the mount and duct to blow down into the boat. Again the issue of condensate needs to be dealt with. If you let it just run off the boat you will need to wash it off regularly or you will grow a green mess on you boat.

What ever you use ask a FL air-conditioning person what to spray on the coils in the salt air environment . There are a lot of motels on beeches in FL with window air conditioning units. They have a spray that they use on these that works very well. I have two mini splits on my trawler and used the stuff but I can't find the can right now. Works good and lasts a long time. I think I've sprayed mine twice in 6 years and there was still a lot in the can.
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Old 17-02-2016, 13:54   #11
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Re: Portable AC unit?

Was the original post about a roll-around unit that you stick a hose out a port? Like:
Honeywell 14,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner with Remote Control in Black and Silver-MM14CCS - The Home Depot

This one (for small trailers) would be pretty easy to retrofit to a hatch or port, but is likely too small for Fla:
5000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner and Heater | Wayfair

Maybe a RV unit on top of a fordeck hatch?

(All of the above would have limited lifespans in a corrosive environment)
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Old 17-02-2016, 14:31   #12
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Re: Portable AC unit?

He did say this is the pilot house version. That's a lot of windows to keep cool behind.

I don't think you'll be happy with the portable unit unless you get one of the much larger units with the intake and exhaust hoses. And you're still not ducted!!

On a boat like that I think a portable will be a stopgap to a proper AC unit installed.

And for those wondering, the OI 33 pilot house certainly has room to install a small generator.


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Old 17-02-2016, 16:01   #13
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Re: Portable AC unit?

We use a 5000 BTU Window unit we bought for $100 at Costco. When not in use it lives in the quarter berth. When we need it, it comes out and goes in a hatch. We have seen many, many boats that do the same. It is plenty to keep our boat cool in Texas/Florida/Bahamas summers. With your pilot house, you might need more BTUs. The key is to up your insulation as much as possible by covering the window, ports, and any other openings with Reflectix or something similar.
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