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> Gasoline Heaters, 914's and buses
Randal
post Nov 20 2010, 10:39 AM
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Did 914's and buses have gasoline heaters and if so where were they and how did they work?

Love to see a picture if anyone has one.

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SLITS
post Nov 20 2010, 10:40 AM
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No, and I don't know

Ersbacher? heaters ..... thought they were early 911.
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aircooledtechguy
post Nov 20 2010, 11:54 AM
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Eberspacher made the heaters for the VWs. They have since changed their name to Espar. Do a Google image search for Eberspacher models : BN2, BN4, BA4 and BA6 and you'll see all the models they used in VWs. They now make models similar to the BN2 & BN4 models Called Airtronic 2 & 4. The website doesn't list it, but they ARE available in gasoline as well; not just diesel.

They are very well designed units (even the early ones in Beetles and buses). They are just like stock HE on your exhaust and work off the same principal.

Basically you have a S/S inner flame chamber where at one end, a small amount of fuel is mixed with incoming combustion air by way of an electric fan and inner vanes. It passes by a glow plug that ignites the mixture causing the s/s chamber to heat-up. There is an outer chamber that encases the inner chamber where a large volume of air is passes by another fan. Add ducting into the car and Viola!! A warm interior that is independent of the engine running and is much warmer than the stock HE ever could be.

Just found a video that explains it better than I can. . .

There is a lot of miss-information out there claiming that these heaters are dangerous and "explode" etc, etc, etc. Those are wives-tales retold by folks who have never owned one or even understand how they work. Eberspacher units have, since the early days, had safety switches, circuits and over temp detectors that cut power to the fuel pump if they detect an over temp condition. They also have pre-run mode for about 20-30 seconds before igniting AND run-on mode of 20-30 seconds after the fuel pump is cut off which purges the flame chamber of fuel vapors so they are safe.

The VW Beetles, Type-3s, Ghias (all w/ BN2) and Things (BN4) all had their gas heaters mounted in the trunk on the left-hand side. Buses had their heaters mounted either in the left side of the engine compartment when using a BN4 (from the 50s - '78) or under the bus when using a BA6 (from '79-on through the air-cooled Vanagon years). In all those cars they were only an option in the U.S. The Type-4 (411/412) was the only car where the gas heater was standard equipment (BA4 model). It had it's heater mounted above the transmission. This hearer was only classified as a heater "booster" since all air coming into the heater first came through the stock HE, but it could run independent of the motor and was a true gas heater.
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SirAndy
post Nov 20 2010, 12:09 PM
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QUOTE(Randal @ Nov 20 2010, 08:39 AM) *
Did 914's and buses have gasoline heaters and if so where were they and how did they work?

Yes, they were available. There's a few threads about them in the garage.

Why is this thread in the sandbox? (IMG:style_emoticons/default/confused24.gif)
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SirAndy
post Nov 20 2010, 12:13 PM
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Webasto made a unit specifically for the 914 ...

(IMG:http://www.914world.com/bbs2/uploads/post-104-1268855767.jpg)

(IMG:http://www.914world.com/bbs2/uploads_offsite/bowlsby.net-179-1290276837.1.jpg)

(IMG:http://www.914world.com/bbs2/uploads_offsite/bowlsby.net-179-1290276838.2.jpg)
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Drums66
post Nov 20 2010, 12:17 PM
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.....Corvair too (IMG:style_emoticons/default/biggrin.gif)
(IMG:style_emoticons/default/bye1.gif)(& when it stops working....guess what you smell!)
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scotty b
post Nov 20 2010, 12:26 PM
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rust free you say ?
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and 356 and 911 (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif) I am not sure about other models, but I do know first hand that on the Things, the trunk was stamped differently where the heater sat, so you can't just put a heater in a Thing if it didn't come with one.
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Mark Henry
post Nov 20 2010, 12:37 PM
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QUOTE(aircooledtechguy @ Nov 20 2010, 12:54 PM) *


There is a lot of miss-information out there claiming that these heaters are dangerous and "explode" etc, etc, etc. Those are wives-tales retold by folks who have never owned one or even understand how they work. Eberspacher units have, since the early days, had safety switches, circuits and over temp detectors that cut power to the fuel pump if they detect an over temp condition. They also have pre-run mode for about 20-30 seconds before igniting AND run-on mode of 20-30 seconds after the fuel pump is cut off which purges the flame chamber of fuel vapors so they are safe.



I guess watching my dad's '67 go up in flames in the middle of a Sears parking lot, on new years eve, with 4 fire trucks and police and a large crowd gathering was just a figment of my childhood imagination.

The "old wife's tale" comes from the late sixties when VW tried to place the gas heater above the tranny. Many rusted out, spewed gas and went up in flames. VW abandoned placing them there shortly after that do to liability issues and put them back in the trunk.

It was fun watch everyone hit the deck when the tires blew. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/wink.gif)
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McMark
post Nov 20 2010, 12:51 PM
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(IMG:style_emoticons/default/agree.gif)

They were available. Never seen anyone successfully install one in a 914. Like any flammable based system, making sure everything is in good working order is a big safety concern, but a well maintained system is safe.
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realred914
post Nov 20 2010, 02:36 PM
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one kept me warm all thru Alaska. nice heaters, really hot ticket to get.
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aircooledtechguy
post Nov 20 2010, 03:18 PM
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QUOTE(Mark Henry @ Nov 20 2010, 10:37 AM) *

I guess watching my dad's '67 go up in flames in the middle of a Sears parking lot, on new years eve, with 4 fire trucks and police and a large crowd gathering was just a figment of my childhood imagination.

The "old wife's tale" comes from the late sixties when VW tried to place the gas heater above the tranny. Many rusted out, spewed gas and went up in flames. VW abandoned placing them there shortly after that do to liability issues and put them back in the trunk.

It was fun watch everyone hit the deck when the tires blew. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/wink.gif)


I will defer to your experience with your dad's car going up in flames; you were there, I wasn't. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/beerchug.gif)

However, in my experience with VWs, 99% of all fires are due to fuel hoses cracking and spewing raw fuel which causes a fire, NOT a malfunction w/in the Eberspacher heater itself. There's a big difference. Like all fuel hoses, if not maintained and changed regularly, you will have a fire. The other 1% came from fuel hose nipples coming loose. I've never seen an Eberspacher heater as the cause. Not saying it has never happened, I just think the heaters get the bad rap for the real cause which is faulty fuel lines.

What I was getting at was what McMark more eloquently stated; when well maintained, they are safe. I can't say that about the aftermarket Stewart Warner heaters though. They do not have the safety features of the Eberspachers and did start a few fires. Personally speaking, I would never use or install a SW heater.

What cars, other than the 411/412, did VW put the heaters above the trans?? In the U.S. they never did, ONLY the 411/412 and buses with the BA6 had them under the cargo floor. . . All the BA4s and BA6s that I have pulled from under the cars have been in pristine condition (once the dust was removed).
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RJMII
post Nov 20 2010, 03:21 PM
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QUOTE(SirAndy @ Nov 20 2010, 11:13 AM) *



The ducting fits over the gas tank and under the hood still? I was under the impression that there wasn't room there. (but somehow I know the lightbulb in the fridge shuts off when the door closes)
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McMark
post Nov 20 2010, 03:53 PM
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Jim, notice the height of the filler neck on the other side. That's how much room you have to play. Also notice that the heater ducting runs through the front bulkhead, not over it.
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ConeDodger
post Nov 20 2010, 04:46 PM
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Nice to know... Especially if I ever move back to Minnesota!
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patssle
post Nov 20 2010, 05:47 PM
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Any idea what the new Espar's run in cost? They don't list their prices.
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bandjoey
post Nov 20 2010, 05:52 PM
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QUOTE(RJMII @ Nov 20 2010, 03:21 PM) *

QUOTE(SirAndy @ Nov 20 2010, 11:13 AM) *



The ducting fits over the gas tank and under the hood still? I was under the impression that there wasn't room there. (but somehow I know the lightbulb in the fridge shuts off when the door closes)



It looks like it's ducted into the air blower box. Hard to see in this picture.
I have a neighbor with a long haul truck. I'm going to quiz him on this next time he's home in a couple of days.
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bandjoey
post Nov 20 2010, 05:56 PM
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$1149 online price
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patssle
post Nov 20 2010, 06:05 PM
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QUOTE(bandjoey @ Nov 20 2010, 03:56 PM) *

$1149 online price


Yikes! Though, still cheaper + headers for a /6. And no heat exchanger fitting or poor heat issues,
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rtalich
post Nov 20 2010, 06:18 PM
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ebay is your friend! Last year I bought a very nice Eberspacher BL1C for $500 on ebay from Germany.

The heat that it delivers it AWESOME!!!!
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Cheapsnake
post Nov 20 2010, 07:03 PM
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Had a gas heater in a 66 bus, heated fine when it worked. However, it apparently didn't have the preignition "purge" cycle, whereby raw gas fumes are vented before it lit off.

One of my greatest delights came when I started the engine after the heater had run for awhile and shut off. Every now and then it would ignite the raw gas with a blast that sounded like a 30-06 going off in your ear, with a ball of flame to match. Since this was a standalone unit its output was directed right at the passenger's feet.

In this case, it just so happened to be my girlfriend's/wife's feet. It always caught her by surprise and freaked her out, swore she'd never ride in that POS again. At least, that's what I think she said, hard to say since I was laughing too hard to make her words out. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/piratenanner.gif)

Tom
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