Michael Schmid ⚡️

Michael Schmid ⚡️

05-03-2022

23:43

#bitcoin Miner #Airstream heater build 🧵 Of course main question is: why even bother? 1. Heaters in RVs are propane based and can be a bit finicky (not work at all) 2. They are even on or off, creating temperature swings 3. If you are out of propane you are out of heat. 1/16

Using a #bitcoin miner gives a more constant heat (with Braiins we can control the exhaust temperature), plus it runs on electricity which at most RV Parks is included in the rent of the space (therefore "free" heating). So how it is built? 2/16

It's an Antminer S9 with a 12V squirrel fan (much less noise than the normal fans) in a plastic box. It sucks air through a dryer vent into the box and pushes the air out via the miner, through a hole in the box into the Airstream. 3/16

The box is a simple 64 Qt. Latching box. The Miner is protected by instant foam bags below and on each side (less vibrations especially during transport). The duck tape is covering broken box as the plastic is super brittle and I wasn't careful enough when cutting it. 4/16

The miner is connected with an Ethernet to WiFi bridge to the Wifi in the Airstream (ESP32 running on 12V stolen from the Antminer 12V Fan ports). It's powered with an Antminer APW3++ on 110V (not all RV parks have 220V). 5/16

Propane heater has two sides: Left is the fan that moves air through the heat exchanger (which is behind), right side is the propane burner that heats outside air super hot and exchanges heat to inside air. This way the harmful propane exhaust never goes into the RV. 6/16

Warm air of miner is fed in the left side through a quick connect dryer went port, this creates an over-pressure in the Airstream but it's not air tight anyway. This way we can still use the propane burner to heat inside air when needed (stats later) 7/16

Air circulation to distribute the warm miner air is done with running the circulation fan without the propane burner, this is controlled by an Arduino with two relays. It is connected to the thermostat inside the Airstream that tells it when the propane heater is needed. 8/16

The S9 is running Braiins. It's set to a target Temperature of 100°C with Dynamic Power Scaling to generate as warm air as possible. Depending on the outside temperature it can reach that or stays below (on time of screenshot, outside air was 3°C). 9/16

Some stats of last 24h: Outside temperature 🟪 33-43F (0-6C). Target temperature in Airstream 🟥 mostly at 65F/18C. Miner Temperature 🟧 ranges widely from 78-116F (25-46C). Propane burner only running for couple of minutes here and there (red background spikes). 10/16

Hard to say how much the propane burner would run without the miner, but fact that the outside temp is up to 30F/18C colder then inside, the miner air is warmer than the inside temperature and the burner only runs for short periods, tells me it works. 11/16

It doesn't always work: One night the outside temp 🟪 dropped below 20F/-6C, the temp of the miner 🟧 went to 60F/15C which was colder than the target temp of 64F/17C, so the Miner was cooling the Airstream and the burner therefore running all night (red background bars). 12/16

I think the outside air of below 0C is just way too cold and even though the miner runs at a chip temperature of 80C+ the actual exhaust air from the miner is at 15C. There might be a chance for some more overclocking, but currently only running on 110V. 13/16

Also there are situations where the inside gets way too warm: Yesterday the outside temp 🟪 went above 40F/4C, the miner 🟧 got up to 116F/46C, combined with direct sun exposure the inside temp 🟩 went up to 88F/31C. Which is way to hot for Humans or Dogs. 14/16

Solution was to open Airstream window to let hot air get out, but would be cool if the Raspberry Pi (that knows all the temps) could tell Braiins to underclock the chips if it gets too hot inside. 15/16

Overall super happy with the system, will continue to use it in Colorado the next few weeks with low temperatures and report some more stats and experiences. We will definitely safe some propane and mine some #bitcoin. 16/16



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