Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 09-03-2008, 16:41   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Bonaire
Boat: Shin Fa 458 Custom Cutter but looks like a Liberty 458
Posts: 346
Head Recommendations?

My boat came with two heads--both Jabsco. We are planning on setting out on long distance cruising and would like peoples opinion on weither we should keep them or replace them. One is several years old and other was replaced last Spring. Previous owner recommended that no toilet paper be put down either. I've heard that before but don't want to travel the world with small plastic bags of waste material paper in each head.
If you think I should replace them, I'd appreciate any input on brands that will stand the test of time.
__________________

__________________
mestrezat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2008, 18:23   #2
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Macatawa Michigan
Boat: Amanda Faye 61' Custom Irwin aftcockpit ketch
Posts: 1,414
Images: 106
I just replaced a low cost Jabsco with a Groco model K. The Groco is build of cast bronze, There is no comparison.
__________________

__________________
Gunner
irwinsailor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2008, 18:27   #3
CF Adviser
 
Pelagic's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2007
Boat: Van Helleman Schooner 65ft StarGazer
Posts: 6,880
When I bought Stargazer it came with 2 Jabsco manual heads.

We don’t use the fwd one much but a few times with guest use there were problems with too much TP and I noticed that small leaks were becoming a common occurrence.

Generally they were uncomfortable, messy toilets.

Switched the aft head to an electric Tecma Silence Plus short using fresh water and have been very pleased with both it’s comfortable form and function.

http://www.tecma.net/nautica/silence/index.html

Will keep the forward one as is, because I now have rebuilt spares and anyway, it’s important that you don’t spoil your guests……. (they may never want to leave!)
__________________
Pelagic is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2008, 18:37   #4
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Colombo
Posts: 1,059
They all have their problems and the best take up too much room for a common sized sailboat.

I made some comments in your other thread, but if looking at replacing I would personally go for a manual one (for reliability) which, like the Jabsco and some others style, have all the valves on the clean water side of the pumping arrangement. Such toilets are very clean and easy to maintain as it is only the bottom of the piston and the joker valve which are exposed to the black water and those are pretty much self cleaning.
__________________
MidLandOne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2008, 19:31   #5
Marine Service Provider
 
AnchorageGuy's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Wherever the boat is!
Boat: Marine Trader 34DC
Posts: 4,618
Not a big fan of Jabsco. We have had a Raritan for 15 years, and yes it is the same head. We don't throw paper in the trash can, it goes in the head, but the amount and treatment of the holding tank must be considered. The secret is maintenance, and on a regular basis. On a weekly time frame we flush white vinegar through the system, followed by a half cup of light cooking oil. The exposed portion of the flush handle plunger is lubricated with superlube. We have rebuilt it once in those 15 years and have had no issues. Oh sh_t, I just really jinxed it didn't I, oh well. we do the maintenance religiously and I believe that is the key. We live aboard 365/24/7.
__________________
Chesapeake Bay, ICW Hampton Roads To Key West, The Gulf Coast, The Bahamas

The Trawler Beach House
Voyages Of Sea Trek
AnchorageGuy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2008, 21:05   #6
CF Adviser
 
Pelagic's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2007
Boat: Van Helleman Schooner 65ft StarGazer
Posts: 6,880
As a live aboard, I just don’t understand that with such a basic and frankly unpleasant component that one would compromise on quality and reliability with going for a cheap, sensitive and maintenance oriented toilet like the Jabsco or Raritan.

When you look at the technical specs of a toilet like the Tecma, you get what you pay for…reliability
http://www.tecma.net/nautica/silence/tech_specs.html

Another toilet I have used for years with never a problem is the headhunter http://www.headhunterinc.com/Products/Toilets/index.html

This is virtually un-pluggable but doesn’t lend itself to below water installation for a single application.
__________________
Pelagic is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2008, 21:36   #7
Moderator
 
Boracay's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Pelican Bay, Great Sandy National Park
Boat: Steel Roberts Offshore 44
Posts: 5,175
Images: 18
Best toilet paper for blocking a head...

I installed a Lavac on the understanding that they were pretty well unblockable.

I started with three ply toilet paper (the really nice stuff) and rapidly learnt that one needs to have a bucket under the pump before removing the cover plate...

Even the ultra expensive imported paper from a chandler gave the pump indigestion.

Now I use the cheapest single ply tissue paper from my local supermarket megastore and it only sometime causes the pump to hesitate.
__________________
Rust never sleeps
Boracay Blog.
Boracay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2008, 23:18   #8
Registered User
 
Sailabel's Avatar

Join Date: May 2006
Location: Home Base: Seattle; Currently Cruising in Mexico
Boat: Tayana 37- Victoria Rose
Posts: 151
Our boat only has one head, and we're full-time liveaboard cruisers. Having 'head problems' isn't really something I wanted to deal with. Power and water consumption is also a concern for us. I know that many swear behind the Lavacs, but we installed a 'Skipper' head about 9 years ago. Great head. As I recall, the ads at the time claimed that you 'could flush an overcoat' throught the thing. After 9 years, no clogs, no leaks. Even had a 'y' valve stuck halfway... no problem for the head.

Expensive, but for us, it is worth it. I agree with the others- don't scrimp... get a top quality head. If you have the power and water to spare, I understand that vacu-flush is also very good.

As a side note, cheap TP works fine. We use Scott. A vendor advised us of the test to use... put a sheet of paper in a bowl of water and let it sit overnight. If it has disolved by morning.... it's ok to use.

Steve
__________________
Steve Abel
SV Victoria Rose, Tayana 37
www.sailvictoriarose.com
Sailabel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2008, 00:45   #9
Senior Cruiser
 
Alan Wheeler's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Marlborough Sounds. New Zealand
Boat: Hartley Tahitian 45ft. Leisure Lady
Posts: 8,038
Images: 102
From what is available here, the Jabsco have always been considered a good toilet.
On our boat we have two TMC toilets. Cheap nasties from Taiwan. One is electric and the other is manual. The electric blocked once when too much TP was flushed. I removed the very small rubber joker valve and have never had another problem scince. The manual has never failed and I have expected it too scince day one. The cheapies are far more inferior to the Jabsco Brydon toilets.
__________________
Wheels

For God so loved the world..........He didn't send a committee.
Alan Wheeler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2008, 02:13   #10
CF Adviser
 
Pelagic's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2007
Boat: Van Helleman Schooner 65ft StarGazer
Posts: 6,880
I think the answer to the dis-crap-encies of the toilets lies behind the flush in the plumbing to its destination.

In the old days “BHT” (before holding tanks) the plumbing was pretty straight forward…a gentle curve up and down to a waterline discharge.


Nowadays it is probably has to loop up to a 3-way valve, then heading back down again, reverse so as to loop up again to a vented loop before turning back down and another 90 degrees at the bilge for discharge.


All that extra plumbing makes for tighter turns in limited space with much greater resistance and places to accumulate.


When I installed my new Tecma, I took the opportunity to pull out all that plumbing to check it. Was amazed at the amount of build up inside the black water hoses, almost ¾” thick!
__________________
Pelagic is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2008, 02:37   #11
Senior Cruiser
 
Lancerbye's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Ladysmith,BC, Vancouver Island , Canada
Boat: Lancer 44 Motorsailer
Posts: 1,757
Images: 32
We have a Sealand Vacuflush very easy on water since we have at least one full time liveaboard in a no dumping zone. Holding tank does not have to be emptied as often and is very hard to plug. The velocity at which stuff is moved through the pipes dertimine the build up. The vacuflush takes care of that also. I have had Pars and Jabscos on other boats. This is the best I have had so far.
__________________
The basis of accomplishment is in never quitting
Mengzi Meng-tse
Lancerbye is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2008, 03:24   #12
CF Adviser
 
Pelagic's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2007
Boat: Van Helleman Schooner 65ft StarGazer
Posts: 6,880
Your right Lancerbyte, discharge velocity is the key to avoiding buildup which is why I like this Tecma. When I flush it is like I have a stern thruster.

I also liked the Sealand, had them on a boat but I do remember irritating problem with tiny leaks of the Flushing ball valve causing it to cycle. Hope they have fixed that problem.
__________________
Pelagic is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2008, 10:33   #13
Senior Cruiser
 
Lancerbye's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Ladysmith,BC, Vancouver Island , Canada
Boat: Lancer 44 Motorsailer
Posts: 1,757
Images: 32
Pelagic
The only time the vacuum pump starts between flushes is when something like a piece of toilet paper gets caught between the ball valve and the seat. easy remedy, just flush again. There is a rebuild kit for the ball valve when a problem develops between the valve seat and the ball. The system I have is fairly old and I don't know when or if the P.O. ever rebuilt it. We have been using it for two years with no problems. I heard from someone that if your fresh water has a high calcium content like some areas have the calcium deposit can cause valve seat problems. Vinegar or lime away can fix that.
__________________
The basis of accomplishment is in never quitting
Mengzi Meng-tse
Lancerbye is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2008, 10:44   #14
Moderator Emeritus
 
David M's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: San Francisco Bay
Boat: research vessel
Posts: 10,150
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sailabel View Post
Our boat only has one head, and we're full-time liveaboard cruisers. Having 'head problems' isn't really something I wanted to deal with. Power and water consumption is also a concern for us. I know that many swear behind the Lavacs, but we installed a 'Skipper' head about 9 years ago. Great head. As I recall, the ads at the time claimed that you 'could flush an overcoat' throught the thing. After 9 years, no clogs, no leaks. Even had a 'y' valve stuck halfway... no problem for the head.

Expensive, but for us, it is worth it. I agree with the others- don't scrimp... get a top quality head. If you have the power and water to spare, I understand that vacu-flush is also very good.

As a side note, cheap TP works fine. We use Scott. A vendor advised us of the test to use... put a sheet of paper in a bowl of water and let it sit overnight. If it has disolved by morning.... it's ok to use.

Steve
I agree with the "Skipper" head. I also have on onboard. You don't know what a good head is until you have had this one on your boat for a few years. This head has no problems...period. It is big and expensive and made of cast bronze and porcelain. There are no electronics or pumps or motors to fail. You pump it with a big sturdy bronze lever arm that you know is not going to break. It certainly strengthens your deltoids on your right arm, but thats the only downside I see. There is not one plastic part on the entire head except for the toilet lid. Its been so reliable and clog free that I would not consider any other head. If you don't want to have to deal with other peoples poop then its worth spending a few extra hundred dollars.
__________________
David

Life begins where land ends.
David M is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2008, 10:44   #15
CF Adviser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Wherever our boat is; Playa Zaragoza, Isla Margarita
Boat: 1994 Solaris Sunstream 40
Posts: 2,439
Another vote here for Lavac - I upgraded to a Lavac Zenith on my last boat and had absolutely no problems with blockages (and yes I flush single ply down it). They have an added advantage in that the full size, 1 1/2" (bilge) pump that it uses can also be diverted for use as a real bilge pump in an emergency situation.

My current boat was built in England and equipped with Lavac Populars, and again, so far so good. The only difficulty now seems to be in getting reasonably priced spares in North America. Defender used to be an importer, but it seems they are no longer carrying them.

Brad
__________________

__________________
Southern Star is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Recommendations for quiet flush electric head? deano Plumbing Systems and Fixtures 8 23-11-2008 21:33
recommendations please Jeff B. Plumbing Systems and Fixtures 1 24-08-2007 01:02
Need some Recommendations tafelice Marine Electronics 16 11-12-2006 14:48
recommendations??? TraCove Monohull Sailboats 13 28-07-2006 18:13
Any recommendations ... Gisle Provisioning: Food & Drink 7 20-05-2003 02:35



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 04:01.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.