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post #91 of 114 Old 11-16-2013
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Re: Composting Toilets vs. Holding Tank

I discovered years ago up in Tonga fish would scoff down fresh poo as fast as they can but wouldnt eat stewed poo out of holding tank,go figure fussy buggers.
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post #92 of 114 Old 11-16-2013
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Re: Composting Toilets vs. Holding Tank

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Here is one link to a gravity tank install. If you read the whole thread it gets off track because of the sink drain arrangement which I wouldn't use. A tank system totally separate from the sink is the proper way.
Bulkhead Mounted Gravity Holding Tank - Cruisers & Sailing Forums

Here is the system Peter Jacobs installed on his Albin Ballad with lots of pics - he made the tank as well. Easy to follow. Scroll down a few pics for the start and it continues on the next page - "more progress pictures" link at the bottom. Peter's previous boat, an Albin Vega also had a gravity draining holding tank and it also worked well.

........ Mostly About Boats: BOAT RESCUE, PART 16: Lots of pictures!

thanks. that may be a less expensive ( read: more doable ) option than a composting head. it's good to have more options from which to choose.
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post #93 of 114 Old 11-16-2013
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Re: Composting Toilets vs. Holding Tank

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I discovered years ago up in Tonga fish would scoff down fresh poo as fast as they can but wouldnt eat stewed poo out of holding tank,go figure fussy buggers.
lol. that's funny, educational, and it also makes me reconsider eating fish.
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post #94 of 114 Old 11-18-2013
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Re: Composting Toilets vs. Holding Tank

In my opinion the composting toilet is so much better than the holding tank system. It smells less, nothing in fact on my boat. It takes up less space. It's cheaper than a good toilet tanks hoses etc.

When cruising full time in the summer, my wife and I empty it once a month. This takes 5 minutes and is not unpleasant with care.

The urine is sterile and goes over the side, (in the ocean only of course).

Compare this to carrying around a tank of sewage under a bunk. Searching for a pumpout station wasting time going to the pumpout station docking,, and pumping out. This takes far, far more time than emptying the compost. And the pump out station is gross and unsanitary. Inevitably some gets spilled and this is toxic smelly stuff. If you have the holding tank system, sooner or later it will get plugged and you'll have to take it apart. THAT is the most unpleasant task I have done, in my life. You will never have to do that with a composting toilet.

Composting toilets like the Nature's Head (probably the best one) are the biggest advancement in sailing since the furling jib. There is really NO comparison.

Talk to a guy that has one. You'll be convinced.
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post #95 of 114 Old 11-19-2013
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Re: Composting Toilets vs. Holding Tank

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In my opinion the composting toilet is so much better than the holding tank system. It smells less, nothing in fact on my boat. It takes up less space. It's cheaper than a good toilet tanks hoses etc.

When cruising full time in the summer, my wife and I empty it once a month. This takes 5 minutes and is not unpleasant with care.

The urine is sterile and goes over the side, (in the ocean only of course).

Compare this to carrying around a tank of sewage under a bunk. Searching for a pumpout station wasting time going to the pumpout station docking,, and pumping out. This takes far, far more time than emptying the compost. And the pump out station is gross and unsanitary. Inevitably some gets spilled and this is toxic smelly stuff. If you have the holding tank system, sooner or later it will get plugged and you'll have to take it apart. THAT is the most unpleasant task I have done, in my life. You will never have to do that with a composting toilet.

Composting toilets like the Nature's Head (probably the best one) are the biggest advancement in sailing since the furling jib. There is really NO comparison.

Talk to a guy that has one. You'll be convinced.
they must be good. composting head owners ( 95% of them ) have nothing but good to say of them.
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post #96 of 114 Old 11-19-2013
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Re: Composting Toilets vs. Holding Tank

I have nothing against composting heads in general, particularly where there is little alternative, such as a mountain cabin. My biggest gripe is that I feel my non-sailor guests would struggle using one. That's a personal choice.

I often read from users, like above, that urine goes overboard. I would love to hear why its okay to put uric acid and pharmaceuticals in the ocean but not bio-degradable solid waste that has already been liquified with salt water.


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Re: Composting Toilets vs. Holding Tank

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I have nothing against composting heads in general, particularly where there is little alternative, such as a mountain cabin. My biggest gripe is that I feel my non-sailor guests would struggle using one. That's a personal choice.

I often read from users, like above, that urine goes overboard. I would love to hear why its okay to put uric acid and pharmaceuticals in the ocean but not bio-degradable solid waste that has already been liquified with salt water.
Minne, I've found that guests quickly get the hang of using my composting toilet. I made up a little laminated card (bilingual, of course) with instructions on using the Nature's Head toilet. I also give non-boating guests a quick run-down on how the toilet works as I go through all the other boat stuff with them. No problems so far. A composting toilet is not very complicated to use.

I don't know what you mean by "uric acid and pharmaceuticals". What pharmaceuticals??

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Re: Composting Toilets vs. Holding Tank

Prescription, over-the-counter, food additives, etc. All present in human waste.

Uric acid is simply in urine, I only wonder why people seem to consider urine more acceptable to put in the water than #2. I don't object to either, in the right circumstances, to be clear.


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Re: Composting Toilets vs. Holding Tank

Well, speaking for myself and my family, we don't take any medication and we eat only natural food. I suspect our urine is Ok...

I also don't understand how people can use a holding tank, often treated with chemicals, and then dump offshore (3 miles in the US?) and think it's the right way to do things. A composting toilet gives you a number of options that a holding tank doesn't. One can always opt to dump the urine container in a public toilet (thus entering the sewage treatment system) and the solids can be disposed of in a number of different ways, including the flower garden.

To be honest, the waste from boats is so insignificant a problem compared to land-based sewage that I don't really worry about it.
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post #100 of 114 Old 11-19-2013
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Re: Composting Toilets vs. Holding Tank

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Prescription, over-the-counter, food additives, etc. All present in human waste.
Yes ... and whether you dump on land through normal sewage treatment systems, or at sea, most of this chemical crap finds its way into our ecosystems. As you know, our sanitation systems do not process much of this chemistry. It gets into the environment either way. So your only answer Minn (if this is your principle concern) is stop your intake of these chemicals, which will be hard to do if you're eating here in North American. Or you can stop excreting .

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Uric acid is simply in urine, I only wonder why people seem to consider urine more acceptable to put in the water than #2. I don't object to either, in the right circumstances, to be clear.
B/c urine does not carry the same load of pathogens (bacteria, viruses and parasites) that is commonly found in human feces. Although this varies from human to human, urine is ~95% water, with the remaining constituents being urea, and various salts (chloride, sodium, potassium). There is usually a trace amount of other inorganic and organic compounds. This is why drinking urine-contaminated water will rarely cause any harm. Doing the same with water contaminated with human feces produces a high risk of infection.

As has often been said on this thread, dilution is the solution to pollution. This is why it is acceptable to dump your shyt while offshore. The 3-mile limit is purely arbitrary, much like voting at 18. but it's seems to be a good safe number.
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