Thinsulate Compare Spreadsheet - Page 2 - Ford Transit USA Forum
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post #11 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-10-2018, 04:37:PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by somekevinguy View Post
I just want the most r value thinsulate i can get which is sm600l. I think that's why most people choose it. I'm not going to put in something with a lower r value because it's a little cheaper. If price was my driver I wouldn't be using thinsulate in the first place.

SM600L isn't the best for every area in a van. Using the thinner Thinsulates, allows you to layer up to higher R values. It isn't linear though so 2 layers of 1.7 does equal 3.4 but it's close. You can also use a thin Thinsulate with an air gap and a ridged insulation such as R-Max for higher R values then SM600L alone for less money. It does take a bit more work though.

My spreadsheet has a price per yard and a price per R value per yard to get an accurate compare of cost differences between the different Thinsulates.

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post #12 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-10-2018, 04:42:PM
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Originally Posted by somekevinguy View Post
I just want the most r value thinsulate i can get which is sm600l. I think that's why most people choose it. I'm not going to put in something with a lower r value because it's a little cheaper. If price was my driver I wouldn't be using thinsulate in the first place.
It is possible to get the R-value you want by layering, combining with other insulation materials like R-max, putting an air gap between layers, and other methods. Being creative with a thinner Thinsulate product and R-Max combined will often net a higher R-value than using SM600L alone. (in the places this can be applied without compressing the Thinsulate)

If you can achieve an R-value that rates as well or better than SM600L, and, it also costs less, I don't understand how that would be a problem.

Some people think just because they spend more that they get more. This isn't always true. The price/R in the chart shows this clearly enough.

Another consideration is how much better Thinsulate is for sound damping than R-max, but, R-max provides better thermal insulation per inch. The best of both worlds (thermal and sound damping) can be achieved in a smaller space using thinner Thinsulate and R-max. There are quite a few things to consider for those wanting to get the most, and do so in the available spaces.

Now, I'm all for encouraging others to spend money. It's good for the economy, or so they say. Thanks for doing your part.

Edit: I see @sportcoupe beat me to this observation. Consider mine an echo.

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Last edited by Travlin; 12-10-2018 at 05:07:PM.
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post #13 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-10-2018, 06:13:PM
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I didn't connect the dots about layering. I thought he meant just buying the best bang for the buck thinsulate and living with whatever R value it was. Besides one sentence about it could be combined with something else, there was no mention of layering. Maybe I'm dumb. I'll accept it.

Also maybe I do have more money than brains but from what I've read and watched one layer is hard enough to install. I'm not dealing with installing multiple layers and/or products and air gaps.

I'm not going to be in extreme cold though. I could see where it might be worth it to get the most R value if you are.

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post #14 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-10-2018, 06:14:PM
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I used closed cell foam, Aeroflex closed cell insulation, Thinsulate, R max polyiso, Reflectix, hollow ceramic balls in paint and Great Stuff closed cell spray foam. Different solutions for different locations.


Flat Roof: Painted with ceramic balls, glued 1" or 1 1/2" polyiso to roof and filled the gaps with spray foam. Covered with Reflectix with air gap down to twin wall polycarbonate ceiling. Added a layer of 1/2" Thinsulate on top of the ceiling material.

Curved roof and over cab: Glued flexible Aeroflex to the roof.

Deep pockets above and below the window indents: Two layers of 1" Aeroflex covered with Reflectix, a 2" air gap and 1/8" closed cell foam between the steel and 1/4" plywood wall covering.

Window indents. Glued 1 1/2" polyiso to the deeper sections and 1" on top of the stiffeners. Filled gaps with spray foam. Covered with indoor/outdoor carpet. Limited insulation to allow longer across van bed platform. Could not use Thinsulate because I need a rigid surface to glue carpet to the insulation.

Floor: 1/2" closed cell foam between corrugations, covered with 1/8" MLV, layer of 1" polyiso, a 1/16" layer of shower wall fiberglass, a 3/8" layer of rubber gym mat all covered with removable indoor/outdoor carpet between the cabinets. Layered floor is between 80/20 floor structure.

Aeroflex is flexible so can be folded to insert it into the deep pockets and bent to match sloped surfaces. Has both R value and noise reduction properties. Saw the Aeroflex being used at a brewery to insulate tanks and piping.
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post #15 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-11-2018, 07:43:AM
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Quick question. You guys use a can of spray glue to hold the insulation in place? Mine's a work truck. I'd go for the sound deadening. Also to keep the heat out. I'll put in a Maxxair 7000 in the spring time. we all know how hot they can be. No roof rack. Trying to keep a low profile.
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post #16 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-11-2018, 09:51:AM
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Originally Posted by Whitewhale View Post
Quick question. You guys use a can of spray glue to hold the insulation in place? Mine's a work truck. I'd go for the sound deadening. Also to keep the heat out. I'll put in a Maxxair 7000 in the spring time. we all know how hot they can be. No roof rack. Trying to keep a low profile.
Used 3M 77 to glue polyiso insulation to the roof. Multiple pieces to eliminate as much of the air gap as possible between the polyiso and the steel. Cut off the corners of each piece of polyiso. Then used Great Stuff Gaps & Cracks to fill the slots between the pieces and the hole where the corners of the polyiso were cut off. Trimmed off the excess Great Stuff with a loose hack saw blade. The end result is one piece of polyiso.

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post #17 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-11-2018, 10:01:AM
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Thanks, I'll retain the info. Just bought new snow tires. Next I'm gonna hang the sliding curtain track used two moving blankets from the behind the seat. Not doing a bulkhead thing - can't lay my seat back.
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post #18 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-11-2018, 10:24:AM
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Now, I'm all for encouraging others to spend money. It's good for the economy, or so they say. Thanks for doing your part.
At least it's good for Hein's economy
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post #19 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-11-2018, 11:42:AM
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Foil covered bubble-wrap is not very effective insulation on it's own, regardless of brand name. It can work well for certain conditions if there is an air gap of 2-6" and no convection (air movement). The no-brainer is to use the thinsulate 600 and be done with it. Trying to save a few bucks through experimentation with building supply materials will not be satisfying. However, people who are in mild climates could be just fine with mild insulative capabilities of home building supply materials.

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post #20 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-11-2018, 12:27:PM
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Originally Posted by surly Bill View Post
Foil covered bubble-wrap is not very effective insulation on it's own, regardless of brand name. It can work well for certain conditions if there is an air gap of 2-6" and no convection (air movement). The no-brainer is to use the thinsulate 600 and be done with it. Trying to save a few bucks through experimentation with building supply materials will not be satisfying. However, people who are in mild climates could be just fine with mild insulative capabilities of home building supply materials.
I'm not sure who mentioned foil-covered bubble-wrap. But, just in case there is confusion about R-Max ...

R-Max is a polyisocyaunurate rigid foam board with foil covering, available in 4' x 8' sheets, in a variety of thicknesses.
  • R-3.2 for 1/2"
  • R-5.0 for 3/4"
  • R-6.0 for 1"

Thinsulate offers less thermal insulation performance by thickness when compared to R-Max when used in those places where a panel can be installed. (Walls, Ceiling, Floor)

Thinsulate does lend itself well to curved surfaces and is significantly better at noise abatement than is R-Max.

This thermal advantage of the R-Max is what led me to combine a thin layer of Thinsulate with R-Max rigid foam in the build. It seemed to offer better overall performance (higher R-value and a measured 10db noise reduction) in a smaller space than would have been achieved using either Thinsulate or R-Max alone.
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Last edited by Travlin; 12-13-2018 at 03:25:PM.
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