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Old 12-30-2015, 07:14 PM   #1
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Join Date: Sep 2014
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Upgrade Furnace in Arctic Fox 1140

Fellow TC owners,
I've been contemplating trading my 2004 Bigfoot 10.5, which I purchased new, for a new 2015/2016 Arctic Fox 1140 or 1150. The main reason for trading is I want the addition of having a slide-out and more interior space in the camper.

However when I read thru specs, I see the AF has a 20,000 BTU furnace as opposed to my BF which has a 30,000 BTU unit. I do camp in cold weather, Late fall and early spring gets cold in Colorado, Utah and New Mexico.

My question is, has anyone replaced the 20,000 btu with a 30,000? Is it as simple as pulling out the old, sliding in the new, and re-connecting duct work, Gas and Electric lines?

Guess I feel that with the addition of the slide-out thus increasing the interior cubic feet, in the AF I'd rather have a bigger furnace to take the chill out of the truck camper.
Any other comments or input on trading the BF for an AF are welcome and appreciated.

As a side note, I've enjoyed countless nights in all temps in my Bigfoot. 100*+ to as cold as -10* F. The Bigfoot has been a great camper but I feel it's time to get into something newer.


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Old 12-30-2015, 11:16 PM   #2
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Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 1,423
Just a thought, I added a catalytic heater to our 11.5' Caribou. It can be used in conjunction with the propane heater or alone and it takes no electrical power. I use it a lot for "boondocking" (mostly bow hunting) in cold weather. You camp in some beautiful country.

I've never changed out a heater so I'm of no help there, sorry.


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Old 12-30-2015, 11:23 PM   #3
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It is as easy as pull and install PROVIDED you are using same brand and model of furnaces

Suburban SF Models......same dimensions
Atwood 8500 Series......same dimensions

Airxcel | Suburban Manufacturing Products

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Old 01-03-2016, 06:45 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by dix39 View Post
Just a thought, I added a catalytic heater to our 11.5' Caribou. It can be used in conjunction with the propane heater or alone and it takes no electrical power. I use it a lot for "boondocking" (mostly bow hunting) in cold weather. You camp in some beautiful country.

I've never changed out a heater so I'm of no help there, sorry.


I didn't know anything about these heaters. Thanks for the insight.
I'm seriously looking into your advise on the catalytic heater.

I just started to look into all the pros and cons and it seems like a very viable option. Maybe even a way to eliminate my thoughts on installing solar on the new camper. Defiantly save a few bucks there.
My main reason I installed solar on my Bigfoot was to re-charge the batteries after a long night of running the furnace.
However, I am concerned about a couple things with the catalytic heater.

1) Will it keep the camper warm enough in the basement and near the exterior walls to prevent water supply lines from freezing?

2) If following manufacturers specific safety instructions you MUST crack open a couple windows in the rig to avoid asphyxiation. You likely won't die of carbon monoxide poisoning , but you darn sure will if you don't have any oxygen to breath. So isn't it a bit counter productive to introduce cold air into the camper you're trying to heat? Just sayin'.

3) I'd prefer the clean look of a permanently mounted heater. That would probably be fairly easy to do I'd think. I'll look deeper into that.

I was able to find a Wave 6000 on-line for about $260 USD. Do you think that would be adequate for an 11.5' TC. The reason I want he Olympian is that they claim it will operate at 12,000 ft. Most of my camping is above 6,000 ft and up to 10,000 ft

I'll keep looking into it.

Anyway Thanks again Steve.

And you're 100% correct,, I'm pretty lucky. I do camp in some very awesome parts of the U.S.
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:44 PM   #5
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Jeff, I'll do my best with your comments.

1) I'm not certain how similar our campers are. Ours is a '92 11.5 Caribou and does not have a basement, but we spent a night in it along I-80 somewhere West of Laramie, WY in a mid Winter blizzard with only the Wave 6k heating it. The next morning there was ice on the inside of both bed windows but nothing froze. I removed the big front window when I installed an aluminum roof which probably helped conserve heat. I don't know what the temp was, but it was about the coldest we've had the camper in.

2) You are correct about the need to slightly open a window/vent and I'm sure there is some heat loss, but it doesn't seem to be significant.

3) I don't think the Wave 6k will keep the camper at 70 degrees with outside temps approaching 0, but it will do that with just a little help from the camper heater. One of the most difficult problems I had was finding a place to mount the thing. We recently bought a 26' MH and I was thinking of putting one in it, with the same problem. Wave also makes a 9k heater, or at least they did, which I think would be better. IMHO, if you can keep the batteries charged with solar and the 30k heater is a slide in, it would probably be easier and less intrusive than the Wave. We bought our camper and truck in '93 and I installed the Wave not long after that. I didn't even consider solar.

Best of luck.

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Old 01-05-2016, 05:39 AM   #6
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I did buy a new Arctic Fox 1140 wet bath yesterday and will take delivery next week.
When speccing the TC, I ended up having the dealership install a 100 watt solar
system just to maintain battery charge. I have no intention on running the unit entirely from solar and a simalar system worked great on my Bigfoot for over 12 years.

I did some poking around on the web, and have found some pretty good ideas on mounting the wave. The use of a cabinet door under the kitchen sink may be a really good option for my floor plan.May need to add another hinge for support but I think it would work well. I've seen others use a swing out TV stand and that looks like a means to mount also. The water heater is below the sink so that would be a good place to tap the supply line.

Camping in temps at or near 0 is tough. I really don't think I'd be doing much of that. But temps in the 20's and 30's for sure. So as a means to take the chill off in those temperatures I think it would work well.

I'm anxious to take delivery and start finding all the little nuances of the Arctic Fox.

Hope to take it out early next month and find the things I like and others that may fall short. Every unit has compromises. I'll compare it to my old faithful Bigfoot 10.6

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ace, furnace, upgrade

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