Big Buddy heater

Discussion in 'Heating / Cooling Systems' started by Lagman, Oct 7, 2017.

  1. Lagman

    Lagman Member

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    Sep 29, 2016
    Bucks County, PA
    My 01 Dutchman didn't come with heat so I just bought a big buddy with the fan. It has a product specific quick connect for the propane to connect to the 20# bottle that I bought.
    Now here's the problem I have.
    I want to use the stove quick connect to supply the heater so I bought the 1/4" male fitting and removed the regulator. I can't find a reducer or coupling to get from the 3/8 male on the hose to the 1/4 male quick connect fitting. I tried npt but only get about 1 turn of thread.
    Has anybody tried this? I've seen where they use this for the outdoor fire pit but I'm stuck trying to make this work. I'd appreciate any info that will help or maybe some else has done this mod.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2017
  2. Lagman

    Lagman Member

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    Sep 29, 2016
    Bucks County, PA
    IMG_3165.JPG Here's a pic
     
  3. tenttrailer

    tenttrailer Art & Joyce - Columbus, O

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    Jul 18, 2013
    Thornville, OH
    My mr heater has a quick disconnect. But it is for regulated (low pressure) that is running in the lines in the camper. I connect to the camper low pressure line (internal to the camper regulated) to use the heater It is not to be hooked up to directly a 20 lb bottle it need to be regulated.

    There is a regulator in the mr heater, but it's only for the 1lb bottles.

    It does seem that the propane appliances manufactures use custom size fittings if they are not to be messed with. Had a odd fitting on a coleman stove. Found a way to get around it, but it did not work. It ended up the stove operated at about 2X low normal pressure for hoter flames.

    PS the quick disconnect my Mrheater is not the same as quick disconnects in campers. You may need another female quick disconnect fitting
     
  4. SteveP

    SteveP Active Member

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    May 21, 2015
    Looks like a 3/8 x 1/4 FIP adaptor, use a brass gas supply line adapter and LP thread compound or yellow thread tape. Should be available at any good hardware store. Make sure you leak check it before lighting anything.

    I assume you're attaching the other side of the quick connect to the regulator or attaching to a regulated source.
     
  5. Lagman

    Lagman Member

    32
    1
    Sep 29, 2016
    Bucks County, PA
    Yes I'll attach to the stove quick connect female. It should be low pressure as the stove runs off the same line. I've tried the fitting at the hardware stores but I'm not getting more than one turn of the threads with the male 1/4" fitting into a coupling or reducer 1/4" to 3/8" The threads are different if you look close. I'm wondering if it a special pattern and not npt. Kinda stuck. The 1/4" male has flat bottom at start of threas. Can't figure out the finer threads on it...
     
  6. theseus

    theseus Centerville, OH

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    Feb 6, 2007
    Centerville, OH
    I have a Mr. Buddy hose that connects my Mr. Buddy Heater directly to a 20lbs tank. So the regulator works fine for the 20lbs as well.
     
  7. SteveP

    SteveP Active Member

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    May 21, 2015
    Mister Heater, who makes the Buddy heaters, does parts sales through their own website that includes fittings. Contact their customer service and verify what you need.

    Or take the nipple and hose to the hardware store and make sure the adaptor fits before buying. If you have a propane supplier nearby they might have what you need.
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2017
  8. Lagman

    Lagman Member

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    1
    Sep 29, 2016
    Bucks County, PA
    I just got the reducer now I need to get a die to chase the threads (they weren't cut deep enough the fit the 1/4" side of the reducer). I did get the Mr Heater line with the regulator but I'm gonna hook up to the stove connect, I'll just hold onto the regulator in case, then I'll run the line direct to the bottle outside through an opening in the canvas.
     
  9. tenttrailer

    tenttrailer Art & Joyce - Columbus, O

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    Jul 18, 2013
    Thornville, OH
    I had what looks like the same fittings. I ended up with a black pipe fitting that adapted the sizes.
     
  10. roybraddy

    roybraddy Well-Known Member

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    Mar 23, 2016
    King George, Virginia
    Just wanted to pass along we use the smaller MR Buddy Heater that has the single 1lb Propane Canister for our back up heater when camping off-grid... It works great for us but does produce alot of water when being used. I have it sitting in a pretty large tray which I have to dump on a regular basis haha... Of course all of that water is the oxygen the Mr Buddy Heater has pulled out of the available air inside the trailer - not good... I have the standard Furnace Heater that came with the trailer but it is way to big for our POPUP trailer and it runs us out heat wise. The associated 12VDC Blower also make alot of noise when being used and pulls alot of DC AMPS from my battery bank. Wakes me up every time it kicks in. I am thinking about replacing it with a Hydronic type HOT WATER heater.

    With all of the info passed around the forums on the danger of using the MR Buddy heaters we have elected not to ever run it after we go to sleep. You also have to crack open some outside vents/window flaps when using the Mr Buddy Heater which kinda defeats why you are needing a heater... The outside word on using the MR Buddy Heaters is to be most careful with them... Never had a problem using them in a Tent setup but that is not a very air tight setup to start with.

    I think if I ever wanted to tap into the outside Propane tanks I would mount one of those CAT type wall heaters that has outside vent to bring in outside fresh air. I got a few ideas about this from another user on the RV NET... These seem to be safe to use mounted inside the trailers.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Google images...

    The both of us are avid Tent Campers so sleeping under the covers is best for us anyway... Putting two sleeping bags zipped up together to use on top of the bed keeps us very warm...

    Roy Ken
    King George, Virginia
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2017
  11. Novarich

    Novarich Member

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    Dec 8, 2014
    I made that setup for my Coleman. I'll see if I can get the hose out of the camper tomorrow and see which fittings I used. It's been a while.
     
  12. theseus

    theseus Centerville, OH

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    Feb 6, 2007
    Centerville, OH
    I hate to disagree with you, but since I teach honors chemistry, the condensation isn't from the oxygen being used up. The Mr. Buddy heaters are catalytic. The condensation is what collects on the side of the propane canisters as the liquid propane expands to a gas. Expansion is a cooling process. This is how your A/c and refrigerators work as well. As the expanding gas cools, the outside canister collects water, like a pop can in summer.

    Since it is catalytic, the Mr. Buddy heater is safe inside a house, much less a pup. To me the bigger danger is the open flame.
     
    Grousetales and nhlakes like this.
  13. roybraddy

    roybraddy Well-Known Member

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    Mar 23, 2016
    King George, Virginia
    Bruce - Thanks for reality check... I just know what I hear that using the MR BUDDY HEATER will kill you when left on inside an air tight area. It also somehow eats up all of the oxygen from the air tight room and also emits poison CO fumes... It is said you just go to sleep and never wake up... I know of one survivor on the RV NET... The only way to safely use them is to open high vents and replace the lost oxygen in the room. The cartons the MR BUDDY comes in states that as well...

    We have used the MR BUDDY Heaters alot over the years mainly when Tent Camping and now just use the two I have for heat during the daytime in the POPUP trailer. Always shut them them we its bed time... What else should I be doing...

    Everything you read about them says don't do it when sleeping???

    Roy Ken
    [​IMG]
     
  14. theseus

    theseus Centerville, OH

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    Feb 6, 2007
    Centerville, OH
    My carton said safe for indoor use. I know the big buddy heaters say don't use inside. The manual for the regular unit says use in a ventilated area, which most pups would qualify especially if you open the top of the door as if you were using the stove.

    When I use mine, I put batteries in my CO detector. It's never gone off
     
  15. rabird

    rabird Howdy!

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    TX
    What is the catalyst? beware, I stayed at a holiday inn!
    I doubt ceramic is the catalyst but as an honors chemistry teacher you will let us know what the catalyst is if it is at all.
     
  16. tenttrailer

    tenttrailer Art & Joyce - Columbus, O

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    Jul 18, 2013
    Thornville, OH
    +2 on the use of the heater in closed spaces. You must keep a window open or have outside ventilation. We keep the vent open about 1 inch. It eats up the oxygen, which results in the heater not burning efficiently and producing way too much CO. If you are lucky the low oxygen switch on the unit will turn off the unit. But I would not risk the lives of my loved ones that the switch is working correctly. Do the search on the heater or call mr heater. Open a vet or window an inch or so.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2017 at 7:18 PM
  17. tenttrailer

    tenttrailer Art & Joyce - Columbus, O

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    Jul 18, 2013
    Thornville, OH
    No it is not catalyst. If you want catalyst buy the olympian wave 3, 6, or 8. But the catalyst heater also need ventilation and good oxygen, They also need the mat to be keep clean or they will become CO producers. I have both a MR Heater and a Wave 8. The catalyst heaters will operate at much higher elevation. I think the mr heaters can operate up to 6,000 or 7,000 feet before they become deadly.
     
    shuang2 likes this.
  18. Grousetales

    Grousetales New Member

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    0
    Mar 19, 2017
    This spring I hooked up my Big Buddy heater the exact same way that you are planning to. I have a nice furnace in my PUP, but I wanted a way to supplement the furnace in case the battery got too low. When I learned that the Big Buddy heater had the low-pressure quick disconnect on it, I went out and bought one so I could hook it up to quick connect line from my stove.

    2017-04-08 11.44.17.jpg
    2017-04-08 11.44.37.jpg

    I started off by purchasing a 12' Mr Heater brand hose that had the quick connect on one end, and a regulator on the other end. The hose was designed for hooking up in to a 20 lb tank. I removed the regulator from the hose since my stove connection is already on low pressure. This was the hose I purchased off Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000UC7966/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o07_s01?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    I then purchased a male 1/4" Male quick connect to put on the hose where the regulator was. Also purchased on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01M9C3UNN/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o07_s02?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    I ran into the same problem as you, different size fittings. I went to the plumbing section on my local Menards store and found the correct 3/8" female NPT to 1/4" female NPT adapter.
    2017-04-08 11.49.20.jpg

    That is basically the short story on how to make this work. In my case, I learned that the quick connects for my stove were a unique design. The modern style connectors would mate and fit, but they wouldn't activate the internal valve to allow the gas to flow. In my case, I ended up purchasing new quick connect assemblies to bring them ALL up to modern design. You probably won't need to do that, but mention it in case you don't get gas flow.

    We use a battery operated CO detector and smoke detector when we camp. It didn't show any CO when using the Mr heater during testing. There are a couple downsides to this set up. The Big Buddy actually gives off quite a bit of light. This is good if you like a night light in your tent, and not good if you prefer it pitch black. You need to crack your windows open to provide for proper ventilation and to help reduce condensation. My big concern is about fire safety. I don't have a good spot to place this on the floor. I can put it on the counter where the stove goes, but then it's a couple feet off the ground and you might not get good convective heat circulation in the camper. I worry that something will get tipped over or fall onto the heater during the night.

    Although we haven't needed the Big Buddy yet, it's peace of mind to know I have a back up method to heat in case the the furnace goes out.
     

    Attached Files:

  19. tenttrailer

    tenttrailer Art & Joyce - Columbus, O

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    Jul 18, 2013
    Thornville, OH
    That looks like the same fitting i got from the hardware store, but it was black Iron.
     
  20. tombiasi

    tombiasi Well-Known Member

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    Sep 1, 2012
    Northwestern New Jersey
    If you teach honors chemistry you will be aware of how much water is produced by burning propane.
     

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