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Old 01-15-2014
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How big a holding tank vs. camping

MikeOReilly started about a thread what amenities are required to make being on a boat a step above camping.

I commented that a good, reliable head is high on my list. This comes from my experience actually camping (cabin without a toilet = camping, cabin with a toilet = condo), and from a charter I was on two years ago.

There were seven of us on a beautiful 39' 3-cabin Jeanneau. That's a bit tight, but I don't think it's an unreasonable number of people for a 3-cabin boat.

Except… for the 22-gallon holding tank! We were only out for three days and we were taking conservation measures like running a couple dinghy trips over in the morning so people could poop in the outhouses on shore, and when we were on shore for hikes or bonfires reminding everyone to pee before we went back to the boat, but we still filled that tank.

So my question is: What's the rule-of-thumb for holding tank size? I know it will vary from person to person and situation to situation, but assuming moderate beer consumption and a minimum of three days between pumpouts, how many gallons per person should a holding tank be?
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