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Old 11-09-2004, 08:44 PM   #1
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no gray or black water holding tank

I'm considering buying an Airstream, advertised as 1972 Safari Land Yacht. The owner's advertisement states that the unit does not have gray or black water tanks. It does have a portable flat tank. Did this model not have tanks? If the plumbing has been modified, what level of difficulty could I be looking at when I restore the possible plumbing modification? What hassels could be involved with emptying the portable tank?
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Old 11-09-2004, 09:45 PM   #2
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All Airstreams that I know of have black tanks, but they did not get grey tanks until around 1975. My 1971 Safari has a black, on which I had to have the dump valve replaced when I bought it. If it has no black tank it is virtually unuseable and may have other significant repairs awaiting a new buyer. Personally I would pass unless it is free.
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Old 11-10-2004, 01:49 AM   #3
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Maybe not as bad as it seems...

There is a tremedous amount of information in these forums about various kinds of changes or modifications that various owners have made relative to the holding tanks. If the original black tank that was in your unit was simply removed and bypassed then it might not be all that hard to put a tank back in. It would not necessarily need to be in the exact original location either. I have read a lot of discussions about adding a grey tank to an AS as well. In my case I have a 1973 31' that I am having to pretty much rebuild from the ground up. I didn't like where the bw tank was and there was a very clumsyly installed grey water tank. I have decided to replace both of them with a combined grey/black tank that I will mount just behind the rear axle. How hard all this would be for you to do yourself depends on how handy you are and what modification were made from the original condition. If you list more specifics about your AS as to where the bath is and etc. maybe someone in the forums can look in their copy of the service manual and tell you where the bw tank was originally. Generally speaking though it seems to me that they are typically mounted pretty much directly under the toilet. Take a look in that area and you may get a clue as to what is missing.

Malcolm
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Old 11-10-2004, 09:17 AM   #4
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Hi,

What is the significance of a combined black/grey tank? Or is adding a separate grey tank as good a solution? Do I need one at all?

I've recently bought ($500.00!!) (I'd say in pretty darn good shape for that money too) ( I hope ) a '61 TradeWind and am still discovering what it does and doesn't have. I know it has a black water tank and now assume that that's all it has.

Thanks in advance,

Steve
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Old 11-10-2004, 11:43 AM   #5
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no gray or black water holding tank

Greetings Steve!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Captmorg
Hi,

What is the significance of a combined black/grey tank? Or is adding a separate grey tank as good a solution? Do I need one at all?

I've recently bought ($500.00!!) (I'd say in pretty darn good shape for that money too) ( I hope ) a '61 TradeWind and am still discovering what it does and doesn't have. I know it has a black water tank and now assume that that's all it has.

Thanks in advance,

Steve
Absent modification by a previous owner, your '61 Tradewind would have a black water tank of between 8 and 12 gallons. In the 1960s prior to '64, the black tank was mounted above floor under the toilet (the toilet will appear to be sitting up on top of a box or on a platform), and the dump valve was generally accessed via a metal handle inserted through the rear bumper (this feature was often modified by previous owners on the early 1960s models that I have seen). Unlike the '64 and later 1960s coaches with the below floor black water tanks, it is not advisable to attempt backing gray water up into the blackwater tank as the black water tank is at a point higher than the shower or tub drain.

Good luck with your Tradewind!

Kevin
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Old 11-10-2004, 09:05 PM   #6
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Combined bw and gw...

Steve,

Take a look at the following thread for a lot of discussion of the relative merits of separate or combined tanks.

http://www.airforums.com/forum...ad.php?t=12785

I started the thread with a question about the feasibility of combining them. I have since pretty much made up my mind to go with a single tank. I am not yet ready for it though so my thinking could change between now and then.
Malcolm
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Old 11-10-2004, 10:52 PM   #7
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I can't imagine combining them if one has separate tanks. To me it is a big hassle to have to rinse the sewer hose out each time I dump the black, especially if I am moving on and having to pack that hose into the rear bumper. One of the advantages of the separate grey tank is being able to dump it after the black, thus "flushing" the sewer hose pretty well. Much quicker and more sanitary.
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Old 11-11-2004, 07:27 PM   #8
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Using a macerator pump...

I am also intending to install a macerator pump on the output of my combined gw/bw tank. This will allow me to do all of my dumping through a garden hose. I think it might be a good idea to somehow add a rinsing mechanism that could spray in clean water to wash down the insides of the tank once in a while. I have seen that there are various types of wand products available that can be lowerd into the tank through the toilet and that might be fine. Since my combined tank will be mounted directly under the toilet that would be pretty easy to do too.

The combined system will have simplified plumbing and require less values. Of course I will only have to buy one tank instead of two. I think the overall savings will probably more than pay for the macerator pump.

Malcolm
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Old 11-11-2004, 08:11 PM   #9
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I am also intending to install a macerator pump on the output of my combined gw/bw tank.
Malcolm
Likewise. In my case the black and grey tanks are separated by about 10 ft. I plan to mount the macerator on the blackwater tank and pump the nasty stuff to a location near the greywater tank outlet. Campingworld has a permanent mount tank flush nozzle that you can mount in the top or side of the tank.

It's a lot easier to route a 3/4" pipe around obstacles than a 3" pipe.
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