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Old 09-01-2015, 04:42 PM   #1
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1961 26' Overlander
Fairhope , Alabama
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Refit Fresh Water System for 1961 Overlander

I recently purchased a 1961 International Overlander. It currently has the old galvanized (torpedo sized tank) under the twin bed. It is my understanding in order to use the whole water system you need to fill the tank and then pressurize it with an air hose and or use the onboard pump.

Has anyone out there converted this type system to one that can be hooked up to city water and bypass the holding tank?

I would hate to think I had to haul a tank of that size with any amount of water down the road.

I know that the later models had a bypass system that you could fill the tank and use pump, or pressurize the plumbing using city hook up.

I would like to jettison the torpedo tank and replace with a smaller lighter more efficient poly tank and a pump with a pressure switch like the later models. (On demand System)

Any help and suggestion would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 09-01-2015, 04:56 PM   #2
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I think you could add an external city water fitting (threaded hose fitting) to the system, and a valve to isolate the tank, so you can use city water. You'll also need a pressure regulator for the city water, I replaced my plumbed-in-place one with a hose mounted piece. You can replace the tank with a polyethylene one, I replaced my water tank with one from Trionix which I thought was reasonable and quite good quality. I would imagine too that you could just wire in a 12v pump for the new tank, maybe using the wiring from the air pump?
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Old 09-01-2015, 05:20 PM   #3
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1962 24' Tradewind
Buffalo , Wyoming
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I redid all the plumbing on my trailer and kept the original galvanized tank. My trailer originally had the ability to attach to city water, however the plumbing had been replaced in a very cobbled up fashion. I now have the ability to run off of the tank or city water, as I can completely isolate the tank from the rest of the system through the use of a couple of valves.

I know many here will disagree, but I think the original pressurized system is vastly superior to the modern electric pump systems. Once pressurized, I can run for several days without re-pressurizing. It's silent, and functions exactly like the water in my house. If you have all the faucets closed when you fill the tank, it will automatically pressurize, no need to add air. I've got a 12-volt air pump attached which allows me to re-pressurize with a switch. I also carry a 12-volt air compressor so I can re-pressurize from the truck. If all else fails I could do the same with a hand operated bicycle pump. The only drawback is that it is difficult to monitor the volume of water in the tank. I can get in the ballpark by using an infrared thermometer.

The biggest problem with these is that many of the old tanks are corroded on the inside, and then susceptible to leaking once pressurized. They are difficult to find replacements for. I used a remote inspection camera to see what mine looked like on the inside before I committed to use it.
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Old 09-14-2015, 01:28 AM   #4
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You may not believe this, but I also have a 61 Overlander, and I am finally getting back to getting some stuff done on it. That torpedo is coming out and something plastic is going in, and I am moving from air pressure to pump on demand.

You can actually (probably) run city water right now - just fill the tank and let the city water continue to pressurize.
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Old 09-15-2015, 07:54 AM   #5
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1961 26' Overlander
Fairhope , Alabama
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I am truly enjoying the Overlander. We went on our second trip this past weekend to the Emerald Coast, (Destin FL).
I have tested the galvanized tank and it appears to be intact with no leaks. I will have to rebuild the spigot on the out side because when I charged the system I could here the air leaking out. I had previously rebuilt the existing toilet and original black water release valve. Everything worked great. The only issue I had was that I did not do anything to the connection from the water supply to the toilet. When I pressurized the system I had a leak around the Febco backflow preventer. I have since pulled it of and rebuilt it as much as possible. Will test the system again this week.
Can anyone that has updated there fresh water to an on demand provide diagram as to there set up. At this point I don't know if I will leave the existing system or convert.
Question: What and where do the three nipples go and do under the tank and water heater. I know one is the tank water release. When I filled and emptied the tank one flowed like a champ but one other just trickled out and the last one nothing came out.
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Old 09-16-2015, 09:12 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Char61Oland View Post
I will have to rebuild the spigot on the out side because when I charged the system I could here the air leaking out.
I had this same problem. I started looking at replacing the valve, but then discovered that it only needed a new o-ring and washer. I'm not used to old-school plumbing. It was a five minute fix after a trip to the hardware store.
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