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Old 14-10-2015, 13:14   #31
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

I have 4 feet of lift and the whale gusher does the job
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Old 14-10-2015, 13:31   #32
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

I've heard a diaphragm manual bilge pump works well. My favorite was my gravity emptied waste tank. everything went into the tank, seacock was just below the tank. Easy Peasy.
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Old 14-10-2015, 13:39   #33
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

The base of the toilet is a 91/2 gal.holding tank,plumbed to a deck pump out. No direct discharge. At sea, switch the valve to a bulkhead mounted Munster Simms Mk V, made in Ireland. Discharge hose goes out the porthole and over the side. Flush out the hose and ,Bob's your uncle. No offense intended.
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Old 14-10-2015, 13:49   #34
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

I used to have a boat that routed all sewage to the holding tank and then to a Y valve which either went overboard or to the deck pumpout. Then, 3 days out of St. Maarten on my way to Marsh Harbour I went to pump out the holding tank and ended up holding the broken handle in my hand. What to do? I ended up having to replumb the head directly to the seacock and seal off the holding tank while out there sailing along. It was either that or use a bucket for the rest of the week with a crew of 4.

Never again. Now I wouldnt have a boat that didnt have an option for a direct overboard dump if I am in the islands. The Bahamas may have a few pumpouts but nowhere near enough to make it possible to rely on them. And in the Eastern Caribbean I am not sure I saw even one anywhere we went.

It is certainly possible to play with head plumbing on the high seas. But I have never felt so deeply unclean in my life. All crew agreed that I should break water discipline and take a bath.

PS - When I got to the Abacos I had to empty the full holding tank without a pump. THAT was a neat trick. Even more unpleasant than the plumbing on passage. Yuk.
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Old 14-10-2015, 15:09   #35
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

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Originally Posted by Sinbad51 View Post
I have 4 feet of lift and the whale gusher does the job

After I though about it for a short while I realized of course my emergency bilge pump is a diaphragm pump, with I don't know 8' of lift, and it works, so 4' ought to be easy. I had never put two and two together I guess.
I think I'll get a fitting that screws into my deck fitting that a hose can be attached to and whale makes a diaphragm pump specifically for waste, mount that on a piece of board with a few feet of 1.5' hose and it ought to work.
I'll only need this when I don't want to direct discharge and pump outs aren't available, so I won't need it often.
I'm just not comfortable with the only way I can empty the tank is by a pump out, and this solves that problem.


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Old 14-10-2015, 15:50   #36
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
After I though about it for a short while I realized of course my emergency bilge pump is a diaphragm pump, with I don't know 8' of lift, and it works, so 4' ought to be easy. I had never put two and two together I guess.
I think I'll get a fitting that screws into my deck fitting that a hose can be attached to and whale makes a diaphragm pump specifically for waste, mount that on a piece of board with a few feet of 1.5' hose and it ought to work.
I'll only need this when I don't want to direct discharge and pump outs aren't available, so I won't need it often.
I'm just not comfortable with the only way I can empty the tank is by a pump out, and this solves that problem.


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I use a Whale Gusher Triton manual pump. It takes about 50 pumps to empty my 35 gallon holding tank. After 5 years it allowed odors to permeate the neoprene so I rebuilt it with the nytril kit. Mine goes to a below the waterline through hull fitting with the sea cock closed except when I'm pumping.


S/V B'Shert
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Old 14-10-2015, 16:49   #37
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

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OK, something like this is what I was looking for, ideally a way to empty the tank, without knocking more holes in the boat, I didn't know that a whale gusher would pull enough vacuum to prime, we are talking at least four feet.
The run from my tank to a Henderson pump, similar to the whale, is about 20 feet with a five foot rise. Works fine.
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Old 14-10-2015, 18:48   #38
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

Not a big deal to install a 'Y' valve letting you choose between your tank and the ocean. If you go that route make sure you snap tie the valve in the tank position to avoid problems with the USCG. Outside of US waters I would not switch the valve to 'sea' unless a few miles off shore. You would have to avoid a lot of pump out fees to pay for a macerator installation and it still not acceptable in US coastal waters.
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Old 14-10-2015, 22:14   #39
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

I understand that many will have their holding tanks in the bilge (and therefore pumping is the only option), but for what it is worth, we have the following arrangement in each head:
Electric-flush toilet with macerator pump at base, pumps waste up into top of holding tank.
Deck pump-out goes straight into the top of each tank from the deck fitting.
At the bottom of each tank is another outlet going straight to a below-waterline seacock. Each tank empties in a few seconds when that seacock is opened, and being at the bottom, the emptying current takes everything, leaving the tank fully empty (75mm/3" hose and valve - there is a big rush when it is opened).


What can go wrong?
1. The 'joker' (non-return) valve between the macerator and the top of the holding tank can from time to time get a little material stopping a complete seal.
No big problem as the volume of the hose above is nothing like the volume of the toilet pan, so it can't overflow. Just flush again, and it usually is fine.
When it eventually needs servicing, you just make sure the tank is empty before opening up the valve .

2. The macerator pump can need a service.
Again, no problem - just undo the four screws, remove, service and back (if you empty the pan properly, there is very little water to run out - and it is essentially clean anyway). I also keep a spare pump for a quick change-over should the problem be more than just a seal.

3. Lower hose falls off, or tank fitting cracks, dumping a full tank into the bilge.
With double hose clamps on all fittings, and regular inspections, this should not be a problem (hope I don't live to regret saying that !).

4. Tank itself cracks.
The tanks are very solid HDPE tanks, mounted on a shelf moulded into the hull (so well-supported). Again, with regular inspection, the chance is very slight, and we generally don't sail with full tanks - especially if we are bashing into it.

As a further note, while we are considering converting to F/W flushing, at the end of each season, I fill each tank with de-scaler (via flushing it into the pan so the hoses get the treatment also), then go for a lumpy sail, or at least a few hard tacks to slosh it around. It then sits overnight before emptying. That seems to remove any scale build-up in the hoses and the tanks.
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Old 15-10-2015, 18:23   #40
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

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zboss - the link on your post shows only two pumpouts in the Exumas, both of which are on Great Exuma.
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Old 15-10-2015, 18:56   #41
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
jeepbluetj,
Thanks, awfully good diagram, I'm nowhere near that computer literate to do a drawing like that.
a64, WADR to jeep, that diagram is from the West Marine Advisors website. His great explanation will solve your question.
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Old 16-10-2015, 00:55   #42
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

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Originally Posted by jeepbluetj View Post
(Also in response to Redsky)

Of course the trick there is "without another through hull." I had several through hulls that were no longer used, so I just used one.

My system is pretty close to:


I do not have the Y valve (#8) in the diagram. It serves no real purpose. If you're macerating, the cap is on the deck plate and it should seal pretty well. The thru-hull is closed if you're pumping out of the deck plate. Works great. Macerator is connected to a tee from the bottom outlet on the tank. Macerator is ideally below the level of the bottom of the tank or as close to it as possible. Yea, you may want some way to shut off the tank to macerator for service. I really didn't have the room so I figure if I need to replace it I'll visit a pump out first.

I also tee'd the saltwater intake valve into my head's sink drain line. We use freshwater to flush 90% of the time. (just run water into the sink) This would be a good place to free up a thru-hull for the discharge - use either the sink drain or the head intake. (whichever is rearmost ) Then you get freshwater flush/saltwater flush and the ability to pump out when offshore.

I could have used the direct discharge thru-hull, but it wasn't as close to the pump as the one I did use. If you don't mind losing the direct discharge, that can also become your thru-hull. You could even add another Y valve to it, but that's too complex for my tastes.

No having direct is fine by me. We're not ever going to take the boat anywhere we'd be at sea long enough to matter. All the harbors/anchorages here in socal are anal about discharge - the poo police are happy I don't have a Y valve.

But it may be real important if your macerator dies and you're in the middle of nowhere. Or take a spare macerator.
I think this is still overly complicated. Here is a diagram of what I described earlier in this thread (it shows a manual toilet, but we have electric, which has the macerator pump at the base of the pan)

1 - Deck pump-out
2 - Tank vent
3 - Gravity feed to sea
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Old 21-10-2015, 19:22   #43
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

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Ocean Girl - Don't stop with Elizabeth harbor. I'd like to know the rest of the big ports in the Exumas with pump out facilities. Heck, I'd like to know the rest of the "big ports" lol.
Sorry it took so long to reply, we've been in transit.
There are pump outs at north great Exuma ( along with the pump out service in the south), New providence, Eleuthera( north and south), Turks and Caicos. Haven't hit the abacos yet and a quick perusal in active captain I see no pump outs.
You are right to think the pickings are slim. Maybe folks looking into wet heads vs dry heads might want to consider a waste treatment system too. Especially if they plan to mostly cruise areas that have yet to install pump outs.
Cheers,
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Old 22-10-2015, 05:45   #44
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Re: Bahamas and T&C Discharge

Thanks for the list of stations.

That covers my January cruise👌


Sent from my iPhone- please forgive autocorrect errors.
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