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Old 08-16-2006, 12:57 AM   #1
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Question my '59 has no waste water tanks. What now?

As of right now, the kitchen sink flows into the back side of the toilet, which flows onto the ground. I'm ready to plumb a valve on to it, but what to do?

I can use an elbow from the bottom of the toilet (3" male pipe thread), a short run of 3" ABS, then to a dump valve. That is the most simple setup I can think of. I have been thinking of a more complicated setup, but am not sure it's wise.

The more complicated setup involves an elbow from the bottom of the toilet (which is on the street side of the trailer), head toward the curb side, elbow toward the rear, elbow again toward the street side again to terminate with a dump valve at the street side.

My reasoning for this complicated plumbing is to give a few gallons of holding capacity. Is this a bad idea? What is typically done on trailers without a holding tank? We will be making mostly grey water with the occasional #1 and rare #2 added in. The PO included a blue tank (5 or 10 gal.) that we will use while boondocking.

We haven't used the trailer yet, just got it a few weeks ago. I need to get something plumbed ASAP, Sept. is for trailer camping!

Also, what is the common slope for sewer pipe on a trailer? I've always used 1/4" per foot in house plumbing, but I assume a greater slope is customary for trailers?

Thanks!

Ryan.
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Old 08-16-2006, 08:49 AM   #2
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Hi Ryan ~

Just like your situation, we were without a black water tank too. This was not going to work because I like to boondock, the wife not so much. I ended up adding a black water tank under the toilet but above the floor. This has been a great solution because there just isn't much room in the back of the trailer under the floor. There's more room between the frame rails towards the iddle of the trailer but I didn't need to replace the floor so didn't have access. The current tank is appr. 17 gallons or so. Which floorplan do you have?

Best of luck on your set up.

Brad
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Old 08-16-2006, 09:41 AM   #3
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Brad,

We have an 18 footer. The toilet is on the street side, maybe two feet behind the axle. One fear that we've had about installing a tank inside the trailer, under the toilet has been putting 120+ pounds of liquid weight on the floor. Plus the trouble and expense of doing that.

What kind of material is your tank made of? Were you able to make a stock size tank work or did you have it made? I'm more in favor of just glueing on pipe below the trailer for now, but adding a tank may be a better long term solution.

Ryan.
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Old 08-16-2006, 12:18 PM   #4
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Ryan ~

The tank is fiberglas and one does not travel with a full black water tank. At least, I don't. You're right, a full tank would be heavy and would concern me regarding the structural integrity of the floor. I'll get a picture of it tonight and post for your consideration.

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Old 08-16-2006, 12:24 PM   #5
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yeah, but if the floor won't hold 120 lbs, it isn't safe to walk on. now, a 20 or 30 gallon tank at the rear of a loooong trailer whose frame sticks out 8, 10, 12 feet behind the rear axle...that might be an issue. But a small tank in the back of a short trailer? nah.
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Old 08-16-2006, 05:23 PM   #6
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I'm sure a small adult weighted tank centered two feet behind the axle won't compromise the frame by any stretch. However, I'm looking for a less is more approach to get the trailer on the road.

Has anyone heard of my 'lots of pipe under the trailer' idea, or am I just that unique?

Ryan.
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Old 08-16-2006, 06:27 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by r&kweber
I'm sure a small adult weighted tank centered two feet behind the axle won't compromise the frame by any stretch. However, I'm looking for a less is more approach to get the trailer on the road.

Has anyone heard of my 'lots of pipe under the trailer' idea, or am I just that unique?

Ryan.
Ryan, your pipe idea is interesting, but I would be concerned about developing leaks in that much piping.

These old trailers from the late 50's didn't have holding tanks. In the owner's manuals it tells you dig a "rabbit hole" or something under the trailer for your waste water to drain into. Then when you're pulling away you were supposed to fill it in. When at a park, obviously you could hook your drains up to their waste system.

If you want to add holding capacity, your options are to add holding tanks under your trailer, add holding tanks to the topside (i.e. floor-mounted), or use portable holding tanks.

Your best bet is to open the bottom of the trailer up (cut out the belly pan) and build some supports and plumb in a black tank and a gray tank. That's a lot of work though. I did this on my '58, but then again I am doing a whole a frame-off restoration.

You can add topside holding tanks, but like you mentioned, this can be a lot of weight. Especially if you're holding gray water, as well. Then again, you probably only have an 18 gallon fresh water tank, or smaller.

Short of that, you could use a portable waste tank which would sit under your trailer while your camping and your waste water would go into it. Then you could empty that out when you get to some place that allows you to dump. Sounds like that's what the PO did.
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Old 08-16-2006, 09:32 PM   #8
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Hello Ryan ,

My 60 tradewind has a original fiberglass tank in the rear curbside above the floor .The raised floor surounds the tank ,thats how they did it then .The toilet of course sits atop of it .I have rebuilt that whole area the same as
original ,no need to have the tank under the trailer .The pipe idea will fill really fast with the waste water ,we use the blue tote ,for grey water.The
black has its own dump valve ,but the sinks and all go out below that ,so
the reason for the tote .You can't really let the grey go on the ground these days either ,you can get bigger totes and they can handle the water ok .

Scott of scottanlily
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Old 08-16-2006, 10:08 PM   #9
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Black Water Tank

Hi Ryan ~

Here's a couple pix of the tank. It still has the plywood that was part of the raised floor on it. The metal ring will probably need to be cut off and then the plywood would lift off. The second one is a shot of the bottom. Also a PDF with dimensions. Let me know what you think.

Brad
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File Type: pdf BlkTank.pdf (436.3 KB, 57 views)
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Old 08-17-2006, 04:45 PM   #10
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Thanks for the photos and drawing. I've decided to to the minimum required for now. We'll let experience and inconvenience force me to add a tank the correct way.

Thanks,

Ryan.
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