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post #1 of 16 Old 04-29-2008 Thread Starter
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"good" (?) porta potty

any suggestions on a good porta potty if there really is such a thing. looking for something that does the job without leaks.
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post #2 of 16 Old 04-29-2008
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The porta potty is not an approved MSD (Marine Sanitation Device) by the USCG. In fact it is illegal to have one in use on board a boat. That is the bad news.
The Good news: Is that there are legal MSDs Types I, II, & III. So do your investigating on the net and chose the type that will fit your vessel.
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post #3 of 16 Old 04-29-2008
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Boasun...the Porta Potti is a perfectly acceptable way to store waste on board for later disposal. Since it is not an INSTALLED sanitation device it does not fall under the regulations for an installed device. A vessel is not required to have an installed device.
Here are the LEGAL options and practical considerations:
Boat US - Online Boating Safety Study Guide

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post #4 of 16 Old 04-29-2008
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Isn't Thetford the leader in Marine PortiPotties? At least, that's what my first cuddy cabin boat had back in the early 80's . . . seemed to work well enough for what it was.

On the other hand, this guy should consider a change in friends . . .

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sold the Nauticat
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post #5 of 16 Old 04-29-2008
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Looked up the federal rules.... There is nothing about porta potties. Mainly because the plastic bag can tear and spill its contents. So if you are on naviable waters of the USA, follow the law. $5000 fine if you don't

Federal Requirements and Safety Tips for Recreational Boats

Marine Sanitation Devices

All recreational boats with installed toilet facilities must have an operable marine sanitation device (MSD) on board. Vessels 65 feet and under may use a Type I, II or III MSD. Vessels over 65 feet must install a Type II or III MSD. All installed MSDs must be Coast Guard certified. Coast Guard certified devices are so labeled except for some holding tanks, which are certified by definition under the regulations.

When operating a vessel on a body of water where the discharge of treated or untreated sewage is prohibited the operator must secure the device in a manner which prevents any discharge. Some acceptable methods are: padlocking overboard discharge valves in the closed position, using non releasable wire tie to hold overboard discharge valves in the closed position, closing overboard discharge valves and removing the handle, locking the door, with padlock or keylock, to the space enclosing the toilets (for Type I and Type II only).
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post #6 of 16 Old 04-29-2008
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There are MSD approved porta potties:

http://www.defender.com/product.jsp?path=-1|51|806|81394&id=435205

From:USCG Naval Architecture Division home page

Portable Toilets
A vessel with no installed toilet is not subject to the provisions of Section 312 of the FWPCA. Portable toilets or "porta-potties" use no installed water, power, etc. Portable toilets are not considered installed toilets and are not subject to the MSD regulations. But they are subject to disposal regulations which prohibit the disposal of raw sewage within territorial waters (3 mile limit), the Great Lakes, or navigable rivers. Their use in combination with a direct discharge toilet will not bring a vessel into compliance. Vessel owners may remove the vessel's installed toilets, and use portable toilets instead. If a vessel is fitted with and is using a portable toilet, any fixed toilets aboard that do not comply with 33 CFR 159 must be made permanently inoperable. Only when total removal of the system would be impractical or unsafe may the toilet be rendered "permanently inoperable," meaning that all parts of the toilet are removed (unless removal of a particular part would be impractical or unsafe).

Portable systems, if used on inspected vessels, must meet the following criteria:
(1) The device must be manufactured of a durable material, such as molded plastic, aluminum, etc., that facilitates its removal ashore. Collapsible units with disposable bags are not acceptable, because the bag can tear and release sewage into the vessel or into the water.
(2) The vessel operator must follow the manufacturer's instructions for waste disposal, chemical additives use, etc.
(3) The device must be securely fastened to the vessel with straps, wooden framing, or similar materials.

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post #7 of 16 Old 04-29-2008
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Thanks for the pertinent citation Jody. Boasun...see...they are legal because they are NOT installed. BTW...portapotties generally have a waste container...not a bag like the portable campsite "stools"

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post #8 of 16 Old 04-29-2008
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The porta potty is not an approved MSD (Marine Sanitation Device) by the USCG. In fact it is illegal to have one in use on board a boat. That is the bad news.
The Good news: Is that there are legal MSDs Types I, II, & III. So do your investigating on the net and chose the type that will fit your vessel.
I have one that is legal, has never been used (hence has never leaked) and is for sale very cheap I will actually give it away if anyone wants it. I don't have the heart to throw it in the trash, but will never use it.
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post #9 of 16 Old 04-30-2008
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I can see how a porta potty would be legal, like the one in camaraderie's post. I've used a porta potty many times camping in the desert (desert motorcycle days), and they worked very good...never leaked or smelled. Easy to separate the waste tank from the seat, and easy to transport the waste tank to a suitable pump out facility...usually my bathroom toilet.
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post #10 of 16 Old 04-30-2008
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We've got an original Thetford Porta-Potti that is probably due for replacement so if you come up with something, let me know.

One thing to bear in mind when emptying these things is that, with a few litres of flush water in the uppper section and 10+ litres of composted poo in the lower, it can be a pig to manouever in a small cabin...

... and due to the shape of the tank, the top compartment is top heavy making it a bit tricky to undo the thing on a rocking boat!

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Last edited by Classic30; 04-30-2008 at 04:23 AM.
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