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Old 08-16-2006, 01:32 AM   #1
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Black tank to outhouse hole?

Our Airstream is going to be permanently located on a piece of land with lots of room, but no septic field or other sewage facility for a few years at least. It is likely to be used primarily a few weekends a year, although we'd like to be able to use it for a week or two at a time if possible.

The original plan was just to build an outhouse and ignore the bathroom facilities in the trailer. I'm wondering if it wouldn't be much more comfortable to find a way to somehow periodically and automatically transfer the contents of the black tank to a hole much like an outouse hole, and have the composting happen there.

I've read a bit about macerating pumps, various options for starting the decomp in the tank, etc., but I'm wondering if anyone has details on what's involved, what distances can/should be considered between the trailer and the hole, and other lessons learned, as mistakes in this area can be regrettable =).

Any advice appreciated!
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Old 08-16-2006, 09:43 AM   #2
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Don't do it. In order to dump a black tank successfully, it has to be partially full. You would need to close the tank fill it over several days and then open the valve to your hole. Your hole would be innundated....rather than gradually filled. Then there's the issue of how far away from your trailer you want the hole. Your hole would have to be relatively close to the trailer for the slinky to empty - doesn't seem like a good plan.

You might be able to do this with gray water - but I would put the out house far from the trailer - and down wind.
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Old 08-16-2006, 10:45 AM   #3
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You can build a very effective small septic system that will handle even continual daily use. You may be subject to local building codes so check that out. You must always keep your tank valve closed and empty at 1/4 to 1/2 intervals or you will clog your tank. I will draw up a system we build at hunting camps and post it later. The oldest system we built is over 15 yrs old and still working. Go easy on the paper and no female Do Dads. Don't put anything in there unless it has been eaten first.

Steve
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Old 08-16-2006, 11:00 AM   #4
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Davida:

If you have property were you can build an old fashioned outhouse, you can dump your trailer there.

The solution can be had by keeping your trailer as far away from the dump hole as possible and using a macerator.

A good quality system like the RV Sani-Con that I installed in my trailer can pump the sludge up to 350 feet away from your trailer, even up-hill if that doesn’t exceed 10 feet.

http://www.emptythetanks.com/

Sergei
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Old 08-16-2006, 11:00 AM   #5
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very effective small septic system

Quote:
Originally Posted by firefly007
You can build a very effective small septic system that will handle even continual daily use. You may be subject to local building codes so check that out. You must always keep your tank valve closed and empty at 1/4 to 1/2 intervals or you will clog your tank. I will draw up a system we build at hunting camps and post it later. The oldest system we built is over 15 yrs old and still working.
Steve
Thanks Steve, I will be interested in seeing that.
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Old 08-16-2006, 11:41 AM   #6
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Steve -- looking forward to the plans.

Sergei -- thanks for the pointers.
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Old 08-16-2006, 01:14 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davida
Our Airstream is going to be permanently located on a piece of land with lots of room, but no septic field or other sewage facility for a few years at least. It is likely to be used primarily a few weekends a year, although we'd like to be able to use it for a week or two at a time if possible.

The original plan was just to build an outhouse and ignore the bathroom facilities in the trailer. I'm wondering if it wouldn't be much more comfortable to find a way to somehow periodically and automatically transfer the contents of the black tank to a hole much like an outouse hole, and have the composting happen there.

I've read a bit about macerating pumps, various options for starting the decomp in the tank, etc., but I'm wondering if anyone has details on what's involved, what distances can/should be considered between the trailer and the hole, and other lessons learned, as mistakes in this area can be regrettable =).


Any advice appreciated!

I purchased one of the clear elbows with the hose connection for cleaning out the tank. I then epoxied a macerator pump to the connection. The pump slides into the connection very tightly. I did thicken the epoxy with cabosil to add strength. When I want to use the pump I connect it on and pump out the tanks and then hook the hose to the flush connection to back flush the tanks when necessary. The pump will push the fluid 120 ‘ or better. I carry the pump in the bumper of the trailer to use on the road if needed. I power the pump with a long power cord from the batteries. This works great.

Good Luck Jim
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Old 08-16-2006, 01:53 PM   #8
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Please read because all items ar not shown on drawing.

The idea here is to duplicate a full size septic system. This layout minimizes digging and helps by giving lots of room to set your tank. Use a heavy plastic 55 gal drum. Use 3" street elbows. Cut the holes using a hole saw and the flange on the elbow will butt up nicely to the tank. Seal the elbow to the tank using canned expandable foam. Locate your OUT hole about 1 inch lower than the IN. Use the Gauze under and over the mulch but not on the sides. Rubber Mulch works well and is light enough to transport in your trailer. You can use rock if you have it but rubber mulch is better.
From your OUT side use about 8' of Sewer flexible Perf pipe and wrap it around the hole.
Use 3" pvc to bring the IN side up to ground level and cap it. It is sometimes needed to vent the IN side where it goes into the tank.
I am kind of rushed today so please ask questions and I will fill the blanks.
It helps to add a mixture of 1 cup of warm water mixed with a spoonfull of RID-X every day to your black tank. you will be amazed that the tank smell will go away.
The ground must be porous enough to allow the water to disapate. You can also run your Gray water into the tank if the ground in your area can handle it.

NOTE Install half of the mulch, then place your perf pipe, install the other half of the mulch,cover with gauze and then cover with dirt.
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Old 08-16-2006, 03:14 PM   #9
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septic system

Quote:
Originally Posted by firefly007
Please read because all items ar not shown on drawing.
The idea here is to duplicate a full size septic system. This layout minimizes digging and helps by giving lots of room to set your tank. Use a heavy plastic 55 gal drum. Use 3" street elbows. Cut the holes using a hole saw and the flange on the elbow will butt up nicely to the tank. Seal the elbow to the tank using canned expandable foam. Locate your OUT hole about 1 inch lower than the IN. Use the Gauze under and over the mulch but not on the sides. From your OUT side use about 8' of Sewer flexible Perf pipe and wrap it around the hole.
Use 3" pvc to bring the IN side up to ground level and cap it. It is sometimes needed to vent the IN side where it goes into the tank.
NOTE Install half of the mulch, then place your perf pipe, install the other half of the mulch,cover with gauze and then cover with dirt.
steve
Hey Steve,
This looks like it is not too much work. Thanks for sharing.

What is the purpose of the gauze?

With your application, you probably never had to pump it out. Was wondering if pumping out this design is even possible?
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Old 08-16-2006, 03:15 PM   #10
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I use a 55 gallon drum buried as shown in the diagram. My "in" pipe comes out through a hole in the top of the drum and is extended just above ground and has a sewer cap on it. A toilet flange was used to seal the pipe to the top of the tank along with some silicone. The pipe extends down into the drum about half way. The "out" pipe comes out on the side towards the top (maybe 4-5" below) also secured with a toilet flange. I put a 90 inside the tank right at the "out" pipe pointing down to keep floaties from going out to the drain field. Finally secured to the outside of the out flange is 10' of perforated pvc drain pipe. This was simply buried in my case as the ground is pure sand. Be sure to keep such a system at least 100' from any well. I have flushed by black water tank up to two times in succession with pretty full tanks and this system has been able to take everything I throw at it. I know of others in my area who have run the same but it is a very sand area. I use rid-x and do not normally run my grey water into the tank but rather run it on top of the sand. The only smell I ever get is when I unscrew the cap from the system to flush my tank.
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Old 08-16-2006, 06:19 PM   #11
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The Drainfield Gauze keeps sand or soil from moving in and filling the the voids in between the mulch or gravel. The gravel field will also continue the process of breaking down waste and releasing it in a liquid form to the soil. It is available at Home Depot as well as all of the other supplies. If you want to pump out just cut a hole in the top of the tank. The reason for the gravel or rubber mulch is for more instant volume that is needed when you hit it with a large gulp of water. Remember, the tank is always full. A gallon in means a gallon out. A properly balanced septic tank does not need to be pumped for a very long time and does not smell at all. If you do not put paper in it it will last for many years without pumping. Most of the waste solids are broken down by bacteria and disolve into solution. By the way, try the RID-X or other similar products in your black tank even if you dump at a sanitary station. You will be surprised at how well it works. It is amazing how mother nature works for you.

steve
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Old 08-16-2006, 06:27 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wacnstac
I use a 55 gallon drum buried as shown in the diagram. My "in" pipe comes out through a hole in the top of the drum and is extended just above ground and has a sewer cap on it. A toilet flange was used to seal the pipe to the top of the tank along with some silicone. The pipe extends down into the drum about half way. The "out" pipe comes out on the side towards the top (maybe 4-5" below) also secured with a toilet flange. I put a 90 inside the tank right at the "out" pipe pointing down to keep floaties from going out to the drain field. Finally secured to the outside of the out flange is 10' of perforated pvc drain pipe. This was simply buried in my case as the ground is pure sand. Be sure to keep such a system at least 100' from any well. I have flushed by black water tank up to two times in succession with pretty full tanks and this system has been able to take everything I throw at it. I know of others in my area who have run the same but it is a very sand area. I use rid-x and do not normally run my grey water into the tank but rather run it on top of the sand. The only smell I ever get is when I unscrew the cap from the system to flush my tank.
Sounds like a good system. Th IN pipe can enter just about any way as long as it is submerged inside the tank. It is very important that the OUT pipe is also sumerged inside the tank and that, It leaves a few inches of air gap inside the tank. This allows the oxygen loving bacteria to thrive while the bacteria that don't like oxygen are below the surface.

Steve
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Old 08-16-2006, 07:58 PM   #13
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Check with Lowes or Homedepot for leach field drain pipe. It is perforated pipe with peanut type styrofoam wrapped around it held in aonion bag casing. comes in 10ft. lengths.its the new style of septic leach field system . you only dig the hole put in barrel and connect pipe and bury.
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Old 08-16-2006, 08:17 PM   #14
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WOW this is amazing that you can build your own septic systems - with no regs .

With so much water and water tables - if your fields are not built correctly, or proper perculating soils/gravel/sand etc. - you are basically pumping pure 250mg Effluent water into the ground.

I guess if you can get away with building your own - a hint for obtaining better effluent waste is to introduce air - and a medium for the good bacteria to chomp at full speed on the effluent water. If you can treat the waste inside the barrel somehow - it would be much less harmful when spilled into the leaching field.

Maybe the media they use in a large fish pond filter system1 - 2 inch hard plastic tubes - have the solids drop to the bottom of your system then the water airated through the medium. The bacteria clings to the media and then devours (your poop) literally in excellerated values - Little pumps can be 12v/solar operated. If you are off the grid. Or a small fish tank air pump would suffice. Properly vented with an active carbon filter will eliminate any odors.

There are the big systems available called MicroFAST but they are for residences - but if you are building your own - you might want to try and replicate the new technologies to make your efforts more efficient and one heck of a lot safer! on the environment - that hmm you live in too.
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