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Insulation / sound deadening thread FAQ
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khalimadeath
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 23, 2014 10:12 pm    Post subject: Insulation / sound deadening thread FAQ Reply with quote

So being relatively new to Bays (old vehicles in general) I find myself looking and searching for the most cost efficient, safe, effective way to sound deaden and insulate my aged bus.. A lot to ask for, considering how cheap most car enthusiasts are these days. A lot of "crap," if you will, to weed through. I find myself thinking why do I/we feel the need to do this. We are so accustomed to shutting the door on our Modern VW Passat for example and hearing that nice thud and being surrounded by silence. Peaceful almost. Of corse newer vehicles are made out of a different type of metal with different coatings and thicknesses which proves challenging when trying to replicate that experience.. or is it.

So when searching around here I find threads like this - BXTII made by RAAMaudio

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=373683&highlight=insulation

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Starts off as an enlightening thread about a new product and begins the debate over toxins, fumes ect.. aren't most things we use in our bus Toxic when applied? Or as I like to say will give you cancer IN California? Por-15 for example very commonly used in or outside of a bus, when applied can be toxic. Then when dry is harmless.

These fumes in insulation are usually related to the use of asphalt in the insulation. How true are these assumptions of toxicity from the insulation? This insulation is cheap from Lowes or Home Depot. It gets the job done but is debatable over the uses in vehicles. On slab foundation houses AC runs along the celling near this product and doesn't pose any health risk.

Lets look at a few more:

Here we have a guy using http://www.reflectixinc.com/ on the celiing of his high top. Not a peep yet about the use of it. No complaints from the owner of the High top.

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=6...p;start=20

Now on the website it say's "No Air Space = No Reflective Insulation Benefit" It appears by the OP's photos there is no(or little) air space so why use reflective insulation? It does look nice going on and maybe easy but why not look into another product? It also states on the website that it is rated to 180 degrees. That doesn't seem very high for a hot day in the summer with a tin top. Maybe only a worry for a black tin top bus owner?

So im sure your all thinking, enough of the knock off brands khalima! OKAY then lets get into the meat of this possible debate and find some answers.

http://www.dynamat.com/

http://www.fatmat.com/

http://www.lizardskin.com/

http://www.lobucrod.com/ (EZcool)


Im sure thats just a few but the most common ones that come up when searching for Insulation and sound deadening. So which ones really provide what we are looking for? Will you have to give up sound for insulation? heat resistance? Having multiple brands of insulation in your bus?? God forbid! Keeping in mind weight is the enemy, lets get through this..

Dynamat- Tons of options to choose from on their web site. Perfect example of a company that makes one good product then starts making all kinds of kits and such for practically the same thing (por-15 much?) So when browsing around I found that with the standard x-tream bulk pack you can expect to pay around $150 for 36 Sq feet that comes in 1'x1' bits to paste down. This will weigh around 15 lbs. Now get ready to buy a couple rolls of their tape to close up those seams. Expect to pay $12 a roll. I would say get 2. BUT wait theres more! Dont forget to buy your very own roller to get the mat down firmly, $18. You will probably need 2 boxes and maybe three if you intend to do the roof. So almost 50 LBS and almost $500 you will probably have some good quality insulation in your ride. (keep in mind this product does not self adhere. 3M adhesive spray may be needed). There are other packages but they only get more expensive. Some are more heat resistant and some are lighter. Its all about what you need and want. BUT this thread is about what is going to be best all around. Not what is most expensive.

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Fatmat- Its immediately evident when you visit their website they cater to sound deadening more then insulation or heat resistance. This product is more appealing when you start navigating their site as it is much more simplified and direct. it only gets better from there when you see the price and whats included. For 36sq feet you pay $100 and you get a roller, knife and instructions. It also states that it is sticky and will need no adhesive. It comes in 32" by 18" strips. More ability to lay down bigger areas and the ability to cut to fit, less puzzling. Now for $239 you can get the Mega Mat kit from Fatmat and it is made of Butyl which has a wide range of uses and is apparently great for sound insulation. Now at this point I am almost sold on Fat mat however there is no note on weight on their website Crying or Very sad So more to come from experience on this one?

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Lizardskin- Now this one I am excited about. A paint/ spray on insulation. Similar to what you would find from a factory vehicle now a days. I happen to know of an excellent video on youtube demonstrating this product as well. See here-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vd9gNqGQ4Ss

I bet your thinking this might be a pretty good option. Sounds good, withstands 300 degrees.. now the tough part. You will need about 4 gallons. Summit racing sells it for $164 free shipping for 2 gallons. So multiply that by 2 and you have enough to do the interior including the celling. Now unfortunately if you aren't cool enough to have a spray gun like me you will have to buy one from harbor freight from $20. OR you can roll it on. However I am starting to get the striking suspicion this stuff is gonna be REALLY heavy when said and done. Actually to the contrary, at just .23 Lbs dry per sq. ft. at about 80 Sq feet you are looking at about 18 Lbs. Not to shabby, although this is depending on the fact that you dont go to heavy on the application. Now this comes in black and white if that makes a difference to you. So this is looking pretty good if you dont mind tapping things off in your interior to spray this in, and if you aren't taking all your interior out, well the downside is obvious.

A combo of lizard skin and RAAM here

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=508221

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


EZ cool- Now I had the chance to stumble across this a while ago and got a sample from the seller. Quality seems nice. Flexible yet still rigid. Has a high temp rating yet I am left a bit nervous when looking between the shiny outer layers and see a air pocket filled center made of a seemingly meltable rubber similar to packing plastic. Dont let that scare you though. That is just my opinion. Now I took this product and put it to a fair test. I took one of those craftsman garage flood lights, you know the ones with the cage that emit a LOT of heat almost instantly. Well I put it directly onto it and applied pressure with my hand. I was able to keep my hand on there for 2 min before it was getting pretty warm. The other side showed no signed of wear from the heat. So I decided to leave the product on the light for 10 min, the results were not impressive. Unfortunately it did exactly what I expected it to. It melted in the middle and left me with basically 2 pieces of foil fused together. So i will NOT be putting this in my engine bay. Now the reason this product appealed to me is #1 I like to support small businesses and #2 Your can get 200Sq feet for $145! ($40 shipping) Now you will have to buy adhesive and tape. BUT this is enough to do more than you need to on your bus. Hell you will have leftover. Now 40 Sq feet is 2 lbs. They claim this to have the best of both worlds, Sound deadening and heat resistance. I like the fact that they dont need gimmicky kits to sell their product. They just want YOU to get the best for what you are doing. You can use this in the engine bay and on the floor. You wont have to buy this or that for different areas like other products. So here is the problem. EZcool is easily compressible, this product relies on the air pockets inside to transfer heat. Placed in an area where it will be compressed like on the floor it will prove to be almost useless. So not what you want to hear but on the roof of the bus it will be VERY effective.

Here is a write up by some guy
http://www.shanescitshed.com/cx2500/air-con/citroen_cx_insulation.html


NOTE- The best preforming car insulation tend to have a reflective material and an insulative material analogous to closed cell foam

Now I obviously understand that I cannot truly include every type of insulation and deadener out there. However when you do a google search like most people these are the top 4. I think we can all agree that when you start to stray from the name brand its just a cheaper product that is essentially the same. We can all conclude without much research that these products will continue to pop up at different price ranges and with slightly different properties and it is impossible to truly make a thread that has everything one would need to know. Please feel free to ad your favorite product and a list of reasons why to this thread!

These prices and facts were provided by Google in partner with Amazon and the Gods of the Internet.
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asiab3
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 23, 2014 10:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for the explanation of the different products. I think it would be helpful (as you started) to separate sound deadeners from true thermal insulators.

Also, most products like Dynamat are NOT designed to be plastered all over the bus like the above pictures. Not only is it a HUGE waste of money, it's just a waste of product. Understanding how the "mat" systems actually work is vital in getting them to function correctly.

Dynamat et. al. do not actually absorb much sound on their own. They prevent the transfer of sound through metal. Since sound waves travel best through hard surfaces, the mats prevent the vibration of metal and stop sound that way. A good illustration of how efficient it is:


Link


So you can see/hear how it deadens sounds so well, it makes me wonder why anyone would plaster their entire bus with something so expensive that does very little thermally.

So to answer your question at the bottom: I have not experimented with temperature insulators, because it's so mild where I travel. For sound insulation, I like the Dynamat X-treme because it's very inexpensive to do the whole bus if you can take the time to experiment with a few knuckle taps on your panels from both sides. Apply any "mat" to where the resonance is loudest, and cover at least 30% of the panel in those places. My "two door kit" was enough to do both doors, the rear hatch, engine compartment, and I have a few small pieces left over.

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khalimadeath
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So that theory is pretty much what I had summed up from all of this. What I will likely do is use a combination of Fatmat and lizard skin. I think this will give me the best combination of insulation and deadening. Depending on where everything is applied of course.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Regardless of what dynamat says their product "can" be used for now....its only true and original function that its really good at....is to stop outflow of sound and stop cross flow of vibrational sound...from high end stereo systems.

That was the industry that put it on the map...and where it still excels. It was designed more to keep the sound from each speaker unit...in the "box" or space where the speaker is so base porting can be effective and you get more clear sound and better separation and higher sound pressure with lower power factors.

Also as noted....there are few materials that do both (sound deadening and temperature insulation).
Some cellular materials like foams etc. can do some of both depending on whats in the "cells" and what the intersecting plastic material of said cells is like...sound conductivity wise.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 11:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

as i understand it, it's not necessary to cover so much surface area of the panels to be treated (as seen in photos above where the entire surfaces are covered).

on a bus we're working on we followed this method:

http://www.sounddeadenershowdown.com/

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you're covering 25% of the panel with the mass loaded vinyl (it's the sticky foil-backed material) and the whole panel gets covered with the high density foam. there's a third step that you can do involving sealants but it's too invasive and non-reversible so we're skipping that part.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used fat mat.

While effective for sound deadening, you're right-pretty lame for insulation.

When camping bring a sleeping bag. When it's snowing- park the sucker because the bodywork was a pain in the butt the first time through.

Problem solved!
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 12:06 pm    Post subject: Re: The great insulation/ sound deadening thread... Reply with quote

khalimadeath wrote:
Here we have a guy using http://www.reflectixinc.com/ on the celiing of his high top. Not a peep yet about the use of it. No complaints from the owner of the High top.
Give it some time, I put it in less than a week ago and I'm not even done. The Reflectix is one of two layers, and my goal is thermal insulation, nothing more.

Are there better products for my purposes than what I used? Undoubtedly, but the Reflectix and the rigid foamboard were already sitting in the garage. I felt that anything was better than nothing, as long as it's doesn't hold moisture and grow bold.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 12:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Scott...its very true that you don not need to cover every surface....if its sound you are deadening.

Sound is complex. Its reflected and transmitted. It can transmit through a panel and then bounce/reflect around. If the volume of the space its in is larger enough the sound can expand....usually dropping in amplitude (or technically increasing amplitude and dropping frequency) ...and get louder like a megaphone.

Inside of doors for example you may only need one large patch on the inside of the outer panel to absorb or arrest the sound as bounces/reflects back from the inside of the inner panel. Some small pieces mounted on the inside and on the end cap will act to arrest some of the many stray sound waves.

Breaking up large panels like the floor and ceiling in moderate sized patches of odd spacing can sometimes do as much as an entire sheet.

The only places I have heard from people who do a lot of this....that warrant full sheathing are trunk spaces ....for instance.....that are going to be housing a high energy sound source like a sub.

In that case the sub itself may be mounted to one un-insulated spot to transmit its vibration into the frame/chassis....or in the case of a strictly air driven sub base.....which will transmit through everything anyway.....but the gist is that virtually everything in the trunk and around the sub is going to vibrate like mad and create non only sub-base frequency ...but a wide range of other annoying frequencies. So you insulate everything in a space like that to arrest as much sound as possible.

The other cases of super insulating that are critical is covering actual holes and perforations through a bulkhead or panel.

Thermal insulation is different. It comes down to R factor...and covering everything that is in contact with the outside.

This is why I agree with the previous post comment....of not using a high cost sound insulator...to do total coverage for temperature/R factor insulation. Ray
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

raygreenwood wrote:
Scott...its very true that you don not need to cover every surface....if its sound you are deadening.

Sound is complex. Its reflected and transmitted. It can transmit through a panel and then bounce/reflect around. If the volume of the space its in is larger enough the sound can expand....usually dropping in amplitude (or technically increasing amplitude and dropping frequency) ...and get louder like a megaphone.

Inside of doors for example you may only need one large patch on the inside of the outer panel to absorb or arrest the sound as bounces/reflects back from the inside of the inner panel. Some small pieces mounted on the inside and on the end cap will act to arrest some of the many stray sound waves.

Breaking up large panels like the floor and ceiling in moderate sized patches of odd spacing can sometimes do as much as an entire sheet.

The only places I have heard from people who do a lot of this....that warrant full sheathing are trunk spaces ....for instance.....that are going to be housing a high energy sound source like a sub.

In that case the sub itself may be mounted to one un-insulated spot to transmit its vibration into the frame/chassis....or in the case of a strictly air driven sub base.....which will transmit through everything anyway.....but the gist is that virtually everything in the trunk and around the sub is going to vibrate like mad and create non only sub-base frequency ...but a wide range of other annoying frequencies. So you insulate everything in a space like that to arrest as much sound as possible.

The other cases of super insulating that are critical is covering actual holes and perforations through a bulkhead or panel.

Thermal insulation is different. It comes down to R factor...and covering everything that is in contact with the outside.

This is why I agree with the previous post comment....of not using a high cost sound insulator...to do total coverage for temperature/R factor insulation. Ray


hmm I agree using something like reflectix between the headliner and tin celling would help keep heat in at night and out during the day when the sun is beating down on it. I feel like spraying lizard skin in some tight places and a butyl based product on the floor would give you some of the best in between performance. A closed cell foam would be horrible on the floor since it would be compressed and loose its effectiveness.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 2:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

anything that encourages moisture to wick between it and the body at the edges* is a problem. Something like jute provides sound deadening, thermal protection and it breathes.

It is inexpensive too.

*http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capillary_action

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Caveat: I am not telling you what to, or what not to do. When a suggestion is offered, it is wishing you the best, and is based on my experiences as a mechanic, automotive machinist, and from racing in the era your bus came to life. My only goal is to share what has been learned on my path. Smile

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 3:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used a multitude of different insulations. Reflectix layers in the sidewalls with thin foam in-between after some Dynamat. Mixed up my own lizard skin paint with ceramic beads and painted the floor and most of the sides. The original foil backed jute insulation around the tranny and fuel tank was the hardest to install. I glued acoustic foam in different areas not viewable around the cabinets. Used allot of cork on the subfloor and inside and under cabinets. Just got my shipment of Thinsulate yesterday. I would say thinsulate is probably the best material to use but it is very pricey, it does a great job of sound proofing too and is used on high end cars.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 3:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

SGKent wrote:
anything that encourages moisture to wick between it and the body at the edges* is a problem.


Though I have done nothing yet.... This ^^^^ If there is any gap to allow moisture to enter between the insulation and the metal you will get stored condensation. Look at the super beetle foam for instance. I have not purchased these products for this reason. Now as SGKent has mentioned, a breathable product should shed moisture. Now if you have pin hole rust in your window sills behind the rubber you might be screwed with the sponge effect. A lot of this subject is hit or miss. much of the vibration noise comes from the roof. Many of the products deteriorate under the heat from the sun when placed on the roof. It stands to believe the a conglomerate of materials may need to be used in different areas of the bus. I'm not yet convinced of any cocktail so far.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 4:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

when i did my westy, i did the under side of the engine bay, the gas tank cubby, slider and long wall in brown bread by b-quiet.

super quiet, and you can't see it. i don't think i would ever buy a car with that crap all over the floors etc. same reason why i hate bed liner

i am happy with my bus. a lot of folks comment on how quiet it is at speed too.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 5:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

SGKent wrote:
anything that encourages moisture to wick between it and the body at the edges* is a problem. Something like jute provides sound deadening, thermal protection and it breathes.

It is inexpensive too.

*http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capillary_action

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


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Where did you buy this? I didn't find it doing a google search.

I used fatmat for the floor but this looks good for the rest of the bus.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 8:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

19BUG70 wrote:
SGKent wrote:
anything that encourages moisture to wick between it and the body at the edges* is a problem. Something like jute provides sound deadening, thermal protection and it breathes.

It is inexpensive too.

*http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capillary_action

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Where did you buy this? I didn't find it doing a google search.

I used fatmat for the floor but this looks good for the rest of the bus.


My auto upholster had it. Basically a form of synthetic jute backing I think.
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Caveat: I am not telling you what to, or what not to do. When a suggestion is offered, it is wishing you the best, and is based on my experiences as a mechanic, automotive machinist, and from racing in the era your bus came to life. My only goal is to share what has been learned on my path. Smile

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 9:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

germansupplyscott wrote:
as i understand it, it's not necessary to cover so much surface area of the panels to be treated (as seen in photos above where the entire surfaces are covered).

on a bus we're working on we followed this method:

http://www.sounddeadenershowdown.com/

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


you're covering 25% of the panel with the mass loaded vinyl (it's the sticky foil-backed material) and the whole panel gets covered with the high density foam. there's a third step that you can do involving sealants but it's too invasive and non-reversible so we're skipping that part.


I think you misspoke.

The CLD Tile is what you use on 25% of the surface. That is what stops the panel resonance.

Then you cover everything with the Mass Loaded Vinyl to block further sound travel into the vehicle.

I did the inside of one door with some dynamat, cause I had the door opened up. I just used 2 square feet, and spread it out through the door. I was amazed at how much of a difference that made in the overall sound of the door when closing it.

I happened across a thread on the Vanagon forum about some kind of insulation the poster used in the engine compartment and above the transaxle. He claimed it quieted it down quite a lot. I'll have to see if I can find it. That strategy is just blocking a lot of the noise from even coming in the bus.

Edit: Here it is.
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=606406
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2014 1:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vwwestyman wrote:
I think you misspoke.


you're right, mixed up names of the two materials.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2014 1:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Enjoy reading about the current status of the sound deadening scene.

Our 69 is nice and quiet. Sound muffling provided by fiberglass/asphalt roof shingles glued on with Henry's adhesive, Peel and Seal, Foil/bubble insulation and carpet padding.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2014 4:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://www.lobucrod.com/

"3/16" closed-cell polyethylene foam core with 99% pure polished aluminum facings on both sides"

I've heard good things, but haven't tried it myself. That said, I am going to try them when I get to my interior overhaul. Some of their sample pics even show a few baywindows all done up with it. Hopefully im as happy as the muscle car guys have been with it...
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metahacker wrote:
... i would say that, if it's an option, (edited) not listen to any forum pessimism..
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markd89
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2014 6:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

airkooledchris wrote:
http://www.lobucrod.com/

"3/16" closed-cell polyethylene foam core with 99% pure polished aluminum facings on both sides"

I've heard good things, but haven't tried it myself. That said, I am going to try them when I get to my interior overhaul. Some of their sample pics even show a few baywindows all done up with it. Hopefully im as happy as the muscle car guys have been with it...


I noticed a decent heat reduction (I have an engine swap), but not sure how much difference it made with sound...
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