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Flechmen

Thermal vest for fursuites?

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A friend and I were thinking on a possible idea.

Imagine, if you could have a vest that you could wear, put a small battery pack in the pocket, and it would keep you comfortably cool, even in the middle of summer with a fursuite on.

Pros:
Portable and battery powered with rechargable batteries.
Runs for maybe 5 to 6 hours on one battery pack.
Inside of vest stays around 70 degrees.

Cons:
While the INSIDE of the vest is cool, the outside gets quite warm
Battery packs might be kinda heavy (think: laptop battery)

The question is, would you like this product? How often would you use it? How much would you be willing to pay for it? Do the pros outweigh the cons? Would the vest be better if it could also WARM you (perhaps selectable with a simple switch)?

Please ask questions, I'm wondering if this is even a marketable idea.
I'm thinking those in construction/road working and people who like to be outdoors and not get sweaty and hot (wealthier people?) would like this kind of thing as well.

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Yes, that's a passive one that would require moisture to work properly. This would be actively cooled using thermoelectric technology.
And, I'm thinking would be in the sub-$50 price range.

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[quote='flechmen' pid='42922' dateline='1345161015']
Yes, that's a passive one that would require moisture to work properly. This would be actively cooled using thermoelectric technology.
And, I'm thinking would be in the sub-$50 price range.
[/quote]

mmm Sounds cool!

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Make it; see how much it really costs and how well it really works. You've kinda said, "who'd like free power?" :P It not good as a theory, show it can be done.

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[quote='foxbunny' pid='42961' dateline='1345238964']
If it were cheaper to purchase and as reliable as the usual cooling vests worn by mascots (the kind you shove in the fridge), it could be very marketable for places like Disney and Chuck E Cheese.
Would the heat transfer out of the suit become an issue? The reason suits are hot is insulation. The heat released away from the body by the cooling system would still be in the suit, correct?
Could the heat buildup become dangerous?
[/quote]

It's a possibility that needs to be explored ;)

I'm not sure of a way of getting the heat further away from the body short of using closed-loop refrigeration, which would be far too heavy and use far too much power.

The person that actually thought of the idea is going to try to make it tho.
(said person came to me on skype asking if it was possible to make an AC unit smaller... peltier devices was my response.)

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If it's 100 degrees outside, pumping air through the suite wouldn't be overly helpful ;) Active cooling would (ice packs would too, but the point is this is controlled and lasts a while)

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* Seven would like to know about development as well :3

Edited by Seven

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The engineer in me remains skeptical that it could be built for $50, be more effective than a phase change cooling vest, and be less bulky as well.

In order to SELL a product for $50, you have to BUILD it for $20 so that you have money left over to pay your taxes and your retailers. That means $15 in parts, and $5 in labor. If you work for $10 an hour, you need to make two complete vests in half an hour, including the sewing.

Than, you have to convince everyone that it's better than this:

http://www.polarproducts.com/polarshop/pc/viewCategories.asp?idCategory=16

I have one of these systems, and it fits underneath my costume and works good, for two to four hours. Then, a half-hour with the elements submerged in an ice chest will have it ready to go for another couple of hours. I don't see an electronic system having the capacity for sinking that many watts of heat in nearly as efficient of a manner.

Of course, I am completely willing to be proven wrong via production of a demonstratable product! ...so design away!

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