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  #321  
Old 01-12-2012
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So I have reached 52 and in celebration, like a kid rushing down to the family room on Christmas morning ready to tear into the boxes containing my Red Ryder BB gun and HotWheel cars, I scampered down to the utility room to investigate day one progress on the newly constucted experimental composting, er modlering, head. I'm a dedicated scientist so I even skipped morning coffee and toast to rush to my, er, 5-gallon petri dish.

I was greeted at the door to the utility room by Chester the wonderdog, tail wagging, head down as if to say "Whatever you encounter on the other side of this door, I DIDN'T DO IT!!!" Reassuring the dog and convincing myself that canines can hear and smell things far beyond the capabilities of mortal men, I entered the room. I was careful to hold my breath until door was closed behind me. Hey if it is gonna stink, I need to know how bad it gets without dilution, cuz that's how it will be on the boat. Opening one eye, carefully, nope no obvious color change to the ambient air:-) No change in lacrimation in said eye:-) Both eyes open, nope no congregation of household vermine around the subject apparatus :-)

There, on the floor in all of its low tech glory sat my experimental head. The vent fan was purring away, producing a slight ripple to the cardbord vent port, proof of its succcessful aeration. I take a tentative sniff of the surrounding air...nothing. I step to directly above the machine, tentative sniff....nothing. I lowered the face to a foot from the exit vent. I feel the cool breeze of the system in action upon my unshaven cheek. Sniff, nothing...no wait the slight odor of.....sawdust. Eureka!!!!!!!!!

So one "man-unit" of waste and 12 hours of operation later with no detectable unpleasantry. Tonight torture test one...curry at luchtime!!!!
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  #322  
Old 01-12-2012
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Quote:
I scampered down to the utility room to investigate day one progress on the newly constucted experimental composting, er modlering, head. I'm a dedicated scientist so I even skipped morning coffee and toast to rush to my, er, 5-gallon petri dish.
What medium did you use in your experiment to drop you poop into?
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  #323  
Old 01-12-2012
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Originally Posted by erps View Post
What medium did you use in your experiment to drop you poop into?
Sounds like he used sawdust. Er, smelled like rather...
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  #324  
Old 01-12-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ewoden View Post
So I have reached 52 and in celebration, like a kid rushing down to the family room on Christmas morning ready to tear into the boxes containing my Red Ryder BB gun and HotWheel cars, I scampered down to the utility room to investigate day one progress on the newly constucted experimental composting, er modlering, head. I'm a dedicated scientist so I even skipped morning coffee and toast to rush to my, er, 5-gallon petri dish.

I was greeted at the door to the utility room by Chester the wonderdog, tail wagging, head down as if to say "Whatever you encounter on the other side of this door, I DIDN'T DO IT!!!" Reassuring the dog and convincing myself that canines can hear and smell things far beyond the capabilities of mortal men, I entered the room. I was careful to hold my breath until door was closed behind me. Hey if it is gonna stink, I need to know how bad it gets without dilution, cuz that's how it will be on the boat. Opening one eye, carefully, nope no obvious color change to the ambient air:-) No change in lacrimation in said eye:-) Both eyes open, nope no congregation of household vermine around the subject apparatus :-)

There, on the floor in all of its low tech glory sat my experimental head. The vent fan was purring away, producing a slight ripple to the cardbord vent port, proof of its succcessful aeration. I take a tentative sniff of the surrounding air...nothing. I step to directly above the machine, tentative sniff....nothing. I lowered the face to a foot from the exit vent. I feel the cool breeze of the system in action upon my unshaven cheek. Sniff, nothing...no wait the slight odor of.....sawdust. Eureka!!!!!!!!!

So one "man-unit" of waste and 12 hours of operation later with no detectable unpleasantry. Tonight torture test one...curry at luchtime!!!!
Now that's what I call SCIENCE!

Keep us posted. We eagerly await...
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  #325  
Old 01-12-2012
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Media

Quote:
Originally Posted by erps View Post
What medium did you use in your experiment to drop you poop into?
Dust from my power miter saw. It consists of some unknown species of pine and a wee bit of red oak, both kiln dried.

I have a bag of potting soil and one of some cat litter made from wheat gluten or some such to try next.

Personally opposed to peat moss use baauseI know where that comes from and how it is mined. Some very memorable experiences come from peat bog exploration so I hate to see them dug up.
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  #326  
Old 01-12-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ewoden View Post
Dust from my power miter saw. It consists of some unknown species of pine and a wee bit of red oak, both kiln dried.

I have a bag of potting soil and one of some cat litter made from wheat gluten or some such to try next.

Personally opposed to peat moss use baauseI know where that comes from and how it is mined. Some very memorable experiences come from peat bog exploration so I hate to see them dug up.
From my experience I have discovered a couple of things about cover material that I would like to share.
I'm using sawdust also, but I've found that it's important for it to be slightly moist. It blocks the odor much better. I also take the time to mix in about 1/4 by volume of biochar. It's my personal opinion that the charcoal helps absorb odor. Remember, my system does not use a fan at all but is a simple bucket emptied once a week. I can't really prove the biochar helps with the odor since there is none, but at the very least it is a valuable additive for the finished compost.
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  #327  
Old 01-12-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ewoden View Post
Dust from my power miter saw. It consists of some unknown species of pine and a wee bit of red oak, both kiln dried.

I have a bag of potting soil and one of some cat litter made from wheat gluten or some such to try next.

Personally opposed to peat moss use baauseI know where that comes from and how it is mined. Some very memorable experiences come from peat bog exploration so I hate to see them dug up.
Not only is peat moss non-renewable and damaging to the ecosystem it is harvested from, when we used it it came with bug eggs that hatched into a bunch of compost-larva. Nearly put the wife off the whole project!

Coconut coir is what we use. Compressed bricks expand many-fold to form a large quantity of a nice dirt-like substance. When they're dry and compressed they're easy to store, light weight and field expedient for boat storage and usage.



Coconut Coir:www.cosmiccoir.com - Coco coir, Coconut coir, Coco peat, Hydroponics, Best coco coir, Growing media, Clean super washed, Coconut peat, Coco pith, Coco coir chips, Coconut husk chips

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  #328  
Old 01-13-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MedSailor View Post
Not only is peat moss non-renewable and damaging to the ecosystem it is harvested from, when we used it it came with bug eggs that hatched into a bunch of compost-larva. Nearly put the wife off the whole project!

Coconut coir is what we use. Compressed bricks expand many-fold to form a large quantity of a nice dirt-like substance. When they're dry and compressed they're easy to store, light weight and field expedient for boat storage and usage.



Coconut Coir:www.cosmiccoir.com - Coco coir, Coconut coir, Coco peat, Hydroponics, Best coco coir, Growing media, Clean super washed, Coconut peat, Coco pith, Coco coir chips, Coconut husk chips

MedSailor
That's the point I was making earlier. This is not actually composting which is a very environmentally safe and responsible activity.

1. Urine goes over the side. If it's no big deal then invite your neighbors to pee in your pool!
2. Pooh gets dumped somewhere on land, could be laced with fecal bacteria that can cause sickness (unless you store it for a few years - yah right!).

Portable or pump out heads are way above this standard and can easily be disposed of in a responsible and non-environmentally fashion.

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  #329  
Old 01-13-2012
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OK.... here we go....

Quote:
Originally Posted by HeartsContent View Post
That's the point I was making earlier. This is not actually composting which is a very environmentally safe and responsible activity.

1. Urine goes over the side. If it's no big deal then invite your neighbors to pee in your pool!
Have you considered what wildlife does when it has to go potti? I can assure you that they don't hold it until they are away from the water. If your sailboat can produce as much urine in a year as one whale in one shot, I'd be mighty impressed. Backyard pool doesn't even fit into the same category as a natural ecosystem that both feeds on the nutrients, and is HUGE in comparison.

Quote:
2. Pooh gets dumped somewhere on land, could be laced with fecal bacteria that can cause sickness (unless you store it for a few years - yah right!).
Are you aware of what sewage plant effluent contains? Look it up, I'm not a teacher, and I'm sure you're old enough to look into the stats for your own municipality.

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Portable or pump out heads are way above this standard and can easily be disposed of in a responsible and non-environmentally fashion.
Really....

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  #330  
Old 01-13-2012
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Originally Posted by PaulfromNWOnt View Post
OK.... here we go....


Have you considered what wildlife does when it has to go potti? I can assure you that they don't hold it until they are away from the water. If your sailboat can produce as much urine in a year as one whale in one shot, I'd be mighty impressed. Backyard pool doesn't even fit into the same category as a natural ecosystem that both feeds on the nutrients, and is HUGE in comparison.


Are you aware of what sewage plant effluent contains? Look it up, I'm not a teacher, and I'm sure you're old enough to look into the stats for your own municipality.


Really....


Either you spout rhetoric based on xenophobic opinion, or you get the facts and you don't. - Science.

I'm sorry, but the first 2 paragraphs and the last one are in sharp contrast. Each side of the debate seems equally able to select only useful arguments. and reduce counter arguments to the absurd.

Perhaps a few links would be interesting. I'm not saying what these add up to; my opinion is mixed and not set.

EPA fact sheet.
http://water.epa.gov/aboutow/owm/upl...07_14_comp.pdf

An interesting early attempt.
Henry Moule - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The don't seem to be many NSF approved devices. But I haven't researched this.
NSF Certified Products - Wastewater Treatment Units and Related Products, components and Materials
Excel Composting Toilet by Sun-Mar
Do Air Head or Nature's Head have any EPA or NSF approvals? I didn't see them on the web sites. Based on the other reading and their size, I'm fairly sure they would fail and so have not tried.

Type 1 MSDS have been subjected to NSF testing and approval. However, since they are discharging into the water, this is a different thing. Do remember, however, that since the influent is ~20x more concentrated than normal POTW influent (as determined by BOD5--no shower or flushing water) that the results should be divided by 20x.
http://www.epa.gov/nrmrl/pubs/600r10008/600r10008.pdf

NIH evaluation of dry heads.
Survival of Fecal Coliforms in Dry-Composting Toilets

Clearly septic tank waste and diapers are allowed in landfills.
http://www.epa.gov/osw/nonhaz/munici...ia/landbig.pdf


So, there is some science and some regulations. I seems to me that the non-MSD boat heads fall in the gaps somewhere; a regulator is going to see them as porta-potties I guess, since they neither discharge nor compost (to NSF standards). They simply dump solids rather than liquids. Real and perceived health and environmental hazards vary with the disposal in both cases, and are minimal--too small to fight over--in either case if managed well. As for mismanagement (over the side, mate, or just throw that under the bushes), well, that's just fight territory.
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