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Old 07-12-2014, 11:31 AM   #1
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Forked Black Tank

We're boondocking and my wife was washing dishes in a wash tub that just fits in the sink. When it is full, I take it and pour the water into the toilet to keep the grey tank from filling up too fast.

Yesterday, I was pouring the tub into the toilet and at the bottom was a fork she had missed. Before I could react, it went down the drain into the black tank. I was not going to reach down and grab it. I may regret that.

I could see it down there. I remembered I had a grabber in my tool box, but the tool box is in the truck. It was pouring out and I decided I'd get it in the morning. How could a metal fork move. Gravity would keep it in place. This would be easy. Not a good decision.

This morning I went to look and the water was so cloudy I couldn't see anything. I got the grabber and tried to grab it, but couldn't feel anything. Maybe I moved it. I still couldn't see anything.

Tomorrow we leave and it will move around, certainly looking for the drain valve to get stuck in. I'll backflush the tank and hope for the best. It might come out and I'll never see it as it works its way down the hose—where it could get stuck and poke through the side.

If I recover it, will we ever use it again? We could boil it, but that doesn't kill everything. There are plenty of forks.

Ever have a kitchen utensil go down the toilet drain? Did you get it out or did it get stuck in the valve? Did you use the fork again?

Gene
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Old 07-12-2014, 12:34 PM   #2
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This too shall pass Gene!
Would be my guess anyway,
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Old 07-12-2014, 12:44 PM   #3
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Chances are good that it will pass. As long as you don't have any 90 degree el's in the waste pipe.
If it were me I would get one of the magnets that have a telescoping handle and go "fishing".
Unless the fork is silver. It's probably some stainless alloy. Most have enough ferrous metal to where a magnet will work. You can check it with another fork from the silverware drawer.
Pick a sunny day. The fish bite better then! LOL
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Old 07-12-2014, 01:35 PM   #4
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A magnet might work, but if I can't see or feel it with the grabber, it is out of range of my magnet. My wife has smaller hands, maybe she could reach down and fish around for it. When I suggested she do that, she said "no thanks". At least she was polite.

To misquote Yogi Berra, "when you see a fork in the tank, take it".

Gene
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Old 07-12-2014, 02:43 PM   #5
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Re: Big blue bomb survivor offers fork advice

Personally, I'd try my best to get the fork out from the top. Having replaced the black water drain valve, I'd try everything possible to avoid having to disassemble the lower sewer plumbing to remove a fork that's stuck in a black water valve that can't be closed.

If and when you retrieve the fork, I'd just clean it thoroughly and boil it. They sterilize surgical equipment that way. -- Besides, "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger..."

The above comments are from a survivor of "The Big Blue Bomb":

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f444...ml#post1206381
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Old 07-12-2014, 02:49 PM   #6
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Got a pair of long rubber gloves..?
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Old 07-12-2014, 02:54 PM   #7
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You could lower a mirror down into the tank on a stick, rotate it around till you see the fork. A flash light will be necessary too.
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Old 07-12-2014, 03:06 PM   #8
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Hi, Gene; You're really forked now.


I think Paula [Foiled Again] did the same thing and reached in and got it. My arm would get stuck and I would be forked.
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Old 07-12-2014, 05:14 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phoenix View Post
Personally, I'd try my best to get the fork out from the top. Having replaced the black water drain valve, I'd try everything possible to avoid having to disassemble the lower sewer plumbing to remove a fork that's stuck in a black water valve that can't be closed.

If and when you retrieve the fork, I'd just clean it thoroughly and boil it. They sterilize surgical equipment that way. -- Besides, "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger..."

The above comments are from a survivor of "The Big Blue Bomb":

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f444...ml#post1206381
Not that I think it would be too hard to adequately sterilize a fork, but I would point out that they sterilize surgical equipment in autoclaves at 250F+. Even so, I think bleach+boil would be plenty to actually clean such a fork, but some people can never clean off the "ick factor."
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Old 07-12-2014, 05:36 PM   #10
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Fishing for forks!

Bert Gildart did the same thing and retrieved his fork with a magnet as documented, along with other imaginative remedies, in his AirForums' thread, "Fork down toilet bowl"!
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Old 07-12-2014, 08:17 PM   #11
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Gene,

Just be thankful that you don't have a macerator
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Old 07-13-2014, 11:36 AM   #12
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I'm taking my chances with leaving it in there until it decides to come out. We leave the campground today and will stop at the Fruita visitor center where they have a dump station. It is the only free one near Grand Junction and it takes us 20 miles out of the way. It might be cheaper to stop at an RV park and pay, but free has a special appeal. One time we stopped there to dump, but they were repaving the area and we couldn't use it. It was late fall and our last trip. That was not a happy discovery.

I decided I couldn't figure out whether the fork was magnetic. All the metal forks don't match each other as they are leftovers from various sets and just used for camping. I'd never figure it out.

If it hangs up in the drain, I've got rubber gloves. I hope they fit Barb because I'm absolutely sure my hand won't fit inside the pipe. I don't even have to try it. Maybe I'd get caught and have to chew off my arm. I'm sure she'll understand.

We have a nice, treed spot at the campground. We can watch people doing strange things from our windows. One family has a 10 year old boy who runs around looking for sticks to burn while the mother stands around and does nothing but direct the husband who never seems to sit down and relax. I'll bet he'll be glad to go back to work. Another family of 5 or 6 left all their sleeping bags out while they went to a pond. It started to rain, but stopped before it got too wet. They sleep in a tent for 2. Must be cozy. Didn't rain last night, but the mosquitos have been busy since we've been here. Have had to stay inside a lot, but got a lot of reading and napping done.

Gene
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Old 07-13-2014, 11:52 AM   #13
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Things could be worse...

Toothbrush disappears down in Toilet - Help!

Shari
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Old 07-13-2014, 11:54 AM   #14
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911 what's your emergency?

Uh yes, my husbands arm is stuck in the toilet drain and he can't get his arm out. We're camping in our Airstream at the park.

911 OK, can I ask why his arm is in the toilet?

We'll we were doing dishes and he lost a fork in the toilet and was trying to get it out.

911 In the toilet?

Not, exactly.

911, we're sending our crew with the Jaws of Toilet tool, that should do it. Meanwhile got a smartphone, this has youtube written all over it.

With kind regards to our 911 based responders.

We're you guys at the park where someone lost their dentures in the black tank?
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