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Old 02-07-2012, 07:55 PM   #15
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1993 21' Sovereign
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Aside from a possible drop in resale value, and the work of re-routing the plumbing and installing an easily accessible drain valve and other inlet/outlet modifications, I see no reason why you could not do this. Anyone else on this forum done this?
SL4bllt's Sovereign has an aftermarket grey tank installed. It is plumbed so the outlet is next to the black tank outlet.
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Old 02-07-2012, 08:28 PM   #16
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SL4bllt's Sovereign has an aftermarket grey tank installed. It is plumbed so the outlet is next to the black tank outlet.
Ok, but I was wondering if anyone had converted their freshwater tank to greywater, like the dude was asking about. Btw, I really like your saying/motto following your response!
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Old 02-07-2012, 08:38 PM   #17
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1993 21' Sovereign
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Ok, but I was wondering if anyone had converted their freshwater tank to greywater, like the dude was asking about. Btw, I really like your saying/motto following your response!
You can, but I don't think it would be a great idea. I can see some schmuck at an RV service place (like me) doing some plumbing work, and re-connecting the tank to the fresh water system. Urp!


Yes, my signature has generated a lot of response, usually of a mental picture of me in a straightjacket...
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Old 02-07-2012, 08:40 PM   #18
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1972 31' Sovereign
Lexington , Minnesota
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I had seriously thought about using our old fresh water tank as a gray water tank. I would have moved it to another location in the trailer as we replaced the fresh water tank with a new one. However, after doing some research and additional reading on the forums about spin welding new fittings on a 37+ year old tank and some of the issues that could arise (cracking of the old tank, the weld not holding on the old plastic, etc.), I decided it was not worth the risk to try and convert it to a gray tank. So, I built my own gray tanks out of ABS as part of our refurb.

My 2 cents.

Chris
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Old 02-07-2012, 09:48 PM   #19
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1974 25' Tradewind
Saint Joseph , Louisiana
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I recently purchased a 1974 TW, LY 25'. It does have a gray water tank but it is very small - measuring approx. 54.5" l x 19" w x 2-3" h. The small size of the tank probably reflects the need to add some sort of gray tank in trailers when they were previously considered unnecessary. I have pulled my old tank and am presently looking on-line for a larger tank that will fit in the space behind my black water tank. The space available is approximately 55" l x 20" w x 7". The distance from subfloor to belly pan is 7.5". If anyone has an idea on a good upgrade/replacement tank and source, please advise.
Thanks.
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Old 02-08-2012, 12:20 AM   #20
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1971 31' Sovereign
Watson , Louisiana
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Gray water tank

Okay. I am now even more convinced to try this. I may purchase a small fresh water tank and store under the sink or front seat area to keep the resale value and having a gray water tank, using the old belly mounted fresh water tank as a gray water tank would help increase value. An RV mechanic, I believe, would think that any belly mounted tank is a waste water tank. Especially if it had drain lines connected to it. I will still have to do a little homework and engineering but thinking outside the box is what I do best. If I do it, I will of course post pictures and describe the process and success or failure.
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Old 02-08-2012, 06:29 AM   #21
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1974 25' Tradewind
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Has anyone thought about mounting the fresh water tank in the bed of their pickup tow vehicle and use a standard RV pump and hose to supply water to the "city" water inlet at the rear of the trailer? I can see this as a possible means of reducing weight in the trailer and perhaps freeing up space for for a gray water holding tank or converting the existing/factory fresh water tank to a holding tank. Another advantage would be the convenience of hauling water to the camp site when boondocking. Several companies make fairly large tanks with flat bottoms that could be used for this purpose. Of course you would need to provide some type of heating system or insulation to keep the truck-mounted tank from freezing during cold weather camping trips. In addition, this system is that it would tie up some valuable space in the tow vehicle.
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Old 02-09-2012, 02:16 PM   #22
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1977 31' Sovereign
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That's a fantastic idea. I have been wringing my hands over the limited black/grey tank size and the difficulty of upgrading them. I haven't purchased a tow vehicle yet so I have good flexibility there. I wonder how hard it is to convert the existing fresh water tank to grey storage. If this works out, I'd have a whopping 86 gallons of grey storage since I have a composting toilet.
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Old 02-09-2012, 03:12 PM   #23
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Menlo Park , California
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Originally Posted by bhutch74ly View Post
Has anyone thought about mounting the fresh water tank in the bed of their pickup tow vehicle and use a standard RV pump and hose to supply water to the "city" water inlet at the rear of the trailer? I can see this as a possible means of reducing weight in the trailer and perhaps freeing up space for for a gray water holding tank or converting the existing/factory fresh water tank to a holding tank. Another advantage would be the convenience of hauling water to the camp site when boondocking. Several companies make fairly large tanks with flat bottoms that could be used for this purpose. Of course you would need to provide some type of heating system or insulation to keep the truck-mounted tank from freezing during cold weather camping trips. In addition, this system is that it would tie up some valuable space in the tow vehicle.
We routinely (well, every year at Burning Man ) carry a 55 gallon drum of extra (in addition to the 32 or so the Tin Pickle carries) water so that the four of us have plenty of water for showers, drinking, etc. We fill the trailer with a small portable pump when we run out of water in the trailer tank. Normally I've used an evaporation system to get rid of the gray water, but last year we had problems with the small pump it used and ended up converting the fresh water barrel to a gray water barrel (pack it out rules...). This year I plan to carry both a fresh water barrel and an empty gray water barrel; I'll use a shower pump to move the gray water into the barrel in back of the truck. We also have a composting toilet.

One disadvantage of converting the existing fresh water tank into a gray tank is that if the tow vehicle is detached, anyone remaining with the trailer has no fresh water supply. The separate gray tank is not a permanent change, and only needs to be carried when needed for an extended trip; a simple 5 gallon bucket suffices for an overnight stay somewhere, many campgrounds have hookups and when we're camping on our own land we let the gray water run down the forested hill - just like one does when camping in a tent.

- Bart
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Old 02-09-2012, 03:17 PM   #24
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I am using 3 brand new 11 gal fresh water tanks ganged together for my gray water

RV Surplus
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Old 02-09-2012, 06:59 PM   #25
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1972 31' Sovereign
Fort Bragg , North Carolina
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With the right size tank that could be availble a mid coach tank works. When we put in a new fresh-water tank, fort our grey tank, it was a old NOS 30 gal Airstream tank, that actually fit between the frame of the Airstream under the mid-coach. DONMAR re-ran the plumbing by having the grey water gravity redirected from the rear bath to this tank by placing a elbow or "T" on the curbside so it would return to the now new center tank. This kept any water from going to the black tank that still is in there just for BW discharge. They may have even closed that part of the plumbing off. Superb work.

Also they used the 3" pipe and place the valve as you can see within reaching the black so a "Y" with two short hoses can be hooked up to one hose that goes to the sewer.

I would NOT take out the availilbilty of the fresh water. NOT only do you lose resale, but you lose the use when you need it. Think ten years from now, not 2 was my metric for timeline.

They did a great job. After recovering from some medical issues we finally got it back on the road a year ago. It has worked very well. Folks need to be aware of the height of the valve as it is close to the ground so getting in nand out of RV sites has to be done with observing this valve.

I know there is an increase in the Longs Boys being refitted. I know the one I own will still weigh under 5800# with new awnings, floating floor, and the new U-shape dinette, and have the luxury of grey water holding tank. Today those new coaches weigh close to 7400# empty.

I think there are many attempts out there sucessful and unsuccessful. Keep asking and it will the right solution will fit your need.

We did place new complete axles last summer so it did lift the coach almost 2" than what this photo reflects prior to new axles.
It made made the coach more flexible for boon docking and dry camping. With today's campgrounds 31' are a little more easier to manuever than years of the past.

Good luck with your selection and as always Happy Airstreaming.

SL4BLLT
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Old 02-09-2012, 07:07 PM   #26
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Click image for larger version

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ID:	150654here's the picture
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Old 02-09-2012, 07:15 PM   #27
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here the coach with new axlesClick image for larger version

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there is a significance gain in height, but that grey tank valve still is low. We use two 5 foot sections connected to a "Y" then a single 15' hose to the sewer pipe work pretty effortlessly. We also installed and electric valve for the the black water so it can be dumped more often from inside. Some campgrounds you end up with the sewer being right near someones campsite, so provides the advantage of maintaining limited friendships during short stays. It works real well and there is no more running in and out of the coach to fill the blaack tank for a second flush.
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Old 02-10-2012, 10:16 AM   #28
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1974 25' Tradewind
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I like Bart's system of carrying a separate fresh water tank in the tow vehicle as well as an empty gray water tank. Having the gray water tank in the bed of the truck would certainly simplify the process of carrying the stuff to the dump station and would not look as silly as pulling the blue wagon tank through the campground by hand. The larger size would also be helpful. Rather than using a shower pump to transfer the gray water to the truck bed tank, I'm thinking about constructing a small "sump" tank with automatic, float-activated sump pump to move the gray water from the rear of the trailer to the truck tank through a hose.

Regarding not having fresh water from the truck-mounted tank when it is away from the camp site - just fill the smaller fresh water tank in the trailer before you unhook to go shopping, sightseeing, etc.

If you guys want to consider a truck bed tank, you may want to look at the tanks used by pest control companies to carry water and mix and hold pesticides. They typically have flat bottoms, straps for securing in the bed, a large opening with snap on cap at the top for filling, and a couple of female threaded bungs on the ends. Several companies also make similar tanks to be mounted on racks on the front of farm tractors. Most of these have hose barb fittings on the ends near the top and bottom to install a clear sight tube so you can see how much liquid is in the tank at a glance. They come in sizes from 30 gal or less to over 200 gal.
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