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Old 02-23-2013, 08:49 AM   #1
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Black Tank Replacement '73 Tradewind Placing in Frame - ABS vs polyethylene

Our PO had replaced the original black tank with one in the frame and didn't bother to vent or seal the toilet input pipe correctly. We boondock up to two weeks, so the original 13 gallon tank isn't large enough. We are looking to replace the current 20 gal. tank with an approximately 25 gallon tank in from Pelland. 49-3/4 x 17 x 9 Holding Tank 24 Gallon 07-H68M $340 or 46 x 22 x 8.5 Holding Tank 25 Gallons 03-H988 $126

If I got the sales person right one is ABS and one is plyethylene? Which is better?

tanks are made from polyethylene plastic resin by way of the rotational mold process. What you get is a one piece, solid plastic tanks that is built for the long run. You can not glue to polyethylene as you could abs.

From Wiki - The most important mechanical properties of ABS are impact resistance and toughness.

Most commercial polypropylene is isotactic and has an intermediate level of crystallinity between that of low-density polyethylene (LDPE) and high-density polyethylene (HDPE). Polypropylene is normally tough and flexible, especially when copolymerized with ethylene. This allows polypropylene to be used as an engineering plastic, competing with materials such as ABS.

Other burning questions: Any reason to not vent by attaching vent pipe into the toilet attachment pipe avoiding another fitting in the black tank? Can a screw type attachement be put in the tank to accept the toilet connection or does it have to be a gasket. Is Valterra the best dump valve to use? Is they type where the shower drain attaches

Next up, we may install a grey tank in the next frame bay in front of the rear section for the shower. Right now when we boondock, we are catch ing the shower water and then disposing it. A grey for the sinks has already been added just behind the fresh water tank.

Followed up by; adding sensors to avoid the flashlight beam down the black tank and fun freshwater fill game along with do you think the grey tank is going to make it until the end of the trip???

Look forward to all the great advice we get from you folks. Haily, the Constructor, and I all appreciate you.
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Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. - Mark Twain
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Old 02-23-2013, 09:58 AM   #2
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Quote:
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...Other burning questions: Any reason to not vent by attaching vent pipe into the toilet attachment pipe avoiding another fitting in the black tank? ...
If the tank is not properly vented, it will glug when draining. This interruption in flow may not allow solids to be flushed completely.

Also, I'm told that at big rallies, everyone's black tanks are serviced by a truck which sucks the tank empty. In the early days, improperly vented tanks were often-time damaged by this operation.

Tom
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Old 02-23-2013, 09:02 PM   #3
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Black tank

I bought this one to use as a black tank.

RV Surplus
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Old 02-23-2013, 09:59 PM   #4
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I suppose you could tee-off a vent line from the toilet riser pipe, but if you mount the black tank so that it is right up against the curbside frame rail, it'll be under the closet, so you can just run the vent to the top of the tank in there. (this is pretty much where the original tank was vented; it was on top of the floor, but it protruded into the closet a little bit, and the vent pipe is attached in the back corner).

For the shower, you could just run the drain to the existing grey tank, assuming it is big enough for your needs; I'm sure it is already vented, as the galley drain is tied to the vent up front. If you add a grey tank in the same frame bay as the shower, you'll have to vent it some other way; I'm planning on running mine up through the closet. It will be visible when you open the door, but that space under the suspended shelf isn't used for much, anyway; This will also act as the drain for the bathroom sink.

Valterra valves have become pretty standard; the Thetford ones are much more expensive...but much more sturdy, too...but they're hard to find, especially in an emergency. Every rv store (even walmart) stocks valterra valves and fittings.

tank manufacturers can install threaded fittings.
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Old 02-24-2013, 06:24 AM   #5
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Thanks Chuck!
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Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. - Mark Twain
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Old 02-24-2013, 07:06 AM   #6
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We were confronted with a similar situation in our "74" Tradewind but decided to utilize the original vents and go with an above the floor tank. PO said no problems with black tank...as we found out it was cracked and leaking...so out it came. Also gave me the opportunity to replace the plumbing with pex and replace the dump valves.

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Old 02-24-2013, 07:12 AM   #7
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Thanks Bob, is your replacement 13 gallons and where did you purchase? The dump valve underneath isn't a problem? Did you use Valterra replacements?
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Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. - Mark Twain
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Old 02-24-2013, 07:36 AM   #8
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Ann we used Thetford valves. While we were in the back we replaced the water inlet. I believe the tank is 16 gal and was purchased from Inland RV.

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Old 02-27-2013, 03:51 AM   #9
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Anyone have experience with installing an s trap in the shower drain line? Constructor is thinking that would block sewer smell when tied into park sewer line??
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Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. - Mark Twain
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Old 03-04-2013, 03:33 PM   #10
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Anyone have experience with installing an s trap in the shower drain line? Constructor is thinking that would block sewer smell when tied into park sewer line??
No, TomW is thinking a P-trap takes up less space in a tight area, and is more than sufficient for odor control.

Bob Dole does too.

Tom
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Old 03-04-2013, 04:06 PM   #11
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We usually shower at the bath house in the campground so the p-trap for my shower is usually dry (the tub is a great storage area). I use a tight fitting plug for the drain in the shower to prevent smells when hooked up at a full service campground rather than running water in the shower.
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Old 03-04-2013, 04:43 PM   #12
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Quote:
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If I got the sales person right one is ABS and one is plyethylene? Which is better?
Polyethylene tanks are more readily available in a wider range of shapes and sizes. Fittings have to be spin welded, which in practice means you have to choose the exact locations in advance and have the tank dealer install them. Or, you can use clamp-type fittings, which are bulky and can leak. It is difficult to repair polyethylene tanks that have cracked for whatever reason.

With ABS tanks you can attach fittings yourself using ABS cement, and you can repair cracks the same way.

Quote:
Other burning questions: Any reason to not vent by attaching vent pipe into the toilet attachment pipe avoiding another fitting in the black tank?
Usually there isn't enough clearance for a wye.

Quote:
Can a screw type attachement be put in the tank to accept the toilet connection or does it have to be a gasket.
A female threaded (NPT) connection is most common.

Quote:
Is Valterra the best dump valve to use?
Yes, because of parts availability. Thetford arguably makes a better product but parts availability is poor and is getting worse.

Quote:
Next up, we may install a grey tank in the next frame bay in front of the rear section for the shower. Right now when we boondock, we are catch ing the shower water and then disposing it. A grey for the sinks has already been added just behind the fresh water tank.
You may be better off with a single greywater tank. If necessary, you can use a pump for the shower drain.

Quote:
Followed up by; adding sensors to avoid the flashlight beam down the black tank and fun freshwater fill game along with do you think the grey tank is going to make it until the end of the trip???
There are no reliable sensors for RV wastewater tanks. They are all prone to clogging and contamination.

Best thing to do is size the tanks so that you run out of freshwater first. A greywater tank at least 75% of the size of the freshwater tank will usually do that.
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Old 04-07-2013, 10:22 AM   #13
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Thank you!
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