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Old 18-05-2018, 12:22   #76
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

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Originally Posted by Mike OReilly View Post
Holy crap . Four months is amazing. Are you full timing on the boat? How many people? Thatís incredible!

The major function of Natureís Head and Air Head are to dry the material out, significantly shrinking the size of the pile (vs leaving all the moisture in). This is how these heads primarily function. Without an electric vent I think my pile would remain too moist.
Mike that is five days a week and just me ( full time summers) .
I find I have to add a bit of moisture at times to keep it from being to dry.
If you are getting to wet then don't add as much water at the beginning when you change the solids. Or adding a small hand full of dry peat and churning it in does the trick.
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Old 18-05-2018, 12:25   #77
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

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CGirvan forgot to mention but the problem you elude to in the beginning of your post would lead me to think the peat is a bit to dry
I didn't know it was possible to be too dry.
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Old 18-05-2018, 12:31   #78
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

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Originally Posted by CGirvan View Post
I didn't know it was possible to be too dry.
this quote is from the natures head troubleshooting guide

https://natureshead.net/troubleshooting/
The AGITATOR HANDLE turns with difficulty.
If the compost gets dry, the handle may not turn easily. Adding used coffee grounds results in added moisture and keeps the compost loose so that it mixes better
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Old 18-05-2018, 12:42   #79
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

Just to let everyone know my diy composter is based off of the c head which doesn't use active ventilation .
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Old 18-05-2018, 12:52   #80
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

I'm planning to separate the urine into a jug, then - probably daily - into a larger portable container for holding until convenient to dump legally. Or if in a no-discharge zone where inspection is likely, I could just keep a few gallons in the big jug to show the inspector. Actually this could be some seawater...
Keeping In mind that every animal on earth except humans pays little or no attention to where its urine and feces go, I don't feel bad about dumping urine overboard outside of a crowded anchorage.
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Old 18-05-2018, 12:53   #81
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

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I'm planning to separate the urine into a jug, then - probably daily - into a larger portable container for holding until convenient to dump legally. Or if in a no-discharge zone where inspection is likely, I could just keep a few gallons in the big jug to show the inspector. Actually this could be some seawater...
Keeping In mind that every animal on earth except humans pays little or no attention to where its urine and feces go, I don't feel bad about dumping urine overboard outside of a crowded anchorage.
you will when paying that big ol fine to California
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Old 18-05-2018, 13:32   #82
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

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Originally Posted by newhaul View Post
this quote is from the natures head troubleshooting guide

https://natureshead.net/troubleshooting/
The AGITATOR HANDLE turns with difficulty.
If the compost gets dry, the handle may not turn easily. Adding used coffee grounds results in added moisture and keeps the compost loose so that it mixes better

Interesting, I was always of the mind that the idea was to remove the moisture and therefore the drier the better.
Just to make sure I was clear, our system is very easy to crank when the new coir is put in but with use and the build up of the crap boulders (for want of a better term) it becomes increasingly more difficult to turn. I'm wondering if this is a peculiarity of the C Head due to its vertical crank shaft or all composters do this or is it just something we are doing wrong.
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Old 18-05-2018, 13:34   #83
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

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Originally Posted by CGirvan View Post
Interesting, I was always of the mind that the idea was to remove the moisture and therefore the drier the better.
Just to make sure I was clear, our system is very easy to crank when the new coir is put in but with use and the build up of the crap boulders (for want of a better term) it becomes increasingly more difficult to turn. I'm wondering if this is a peculiarity of the C Head due to its vertical crank shaft or all composters do this or is it just something we are doing wrong.
sounds to me like its getting to dry . Add some used coffee grounds to it and see what she does.
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Old 18-05-2018, 13:41   #84
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

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Mike that is five days a week and just me ( full time summers) .
I find I have to add a bit of moisture at times to keep it from being to dry.
If you are getting to wet then don't add as much water at the beginning when you change the solids. Or adding a small hand full of dry peat and churning it in does the trick.
OKÖ so it comes out to close to the same:

We average about five weeks, two adults: 7x5x2=70 dumps.
Youíre getting 4 months, 5 days/week, one person: 23 x 4 x1 = 92 dumps.

Keeping the right moisture level is pretty critical for the functioning of these heads. This is the only real skill that might not come naturally to new users.

Iíve never used a CH, and have wondered about the lack of fan venting. I suspect it gets to the different designs of these heads. CH uses smaller holding tanks, and is supposed to be emptied more often (every two weeks seems to be the norm).

Both NH and AH are designed to be largely sealed off when not in use ó all except for the vent. This keeps a slight negative pressure in the main contain, ensuring any odours are vented outside (not that there is much). It also keeps constant air flowing to dry things out. The drying reduces the volume of the feces, but itís important not to get too dry. Too dry will impede the action of the head.
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Old 18-05-2018, 13:51   #85
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

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Originally Posted by Mike OReilly View Post
OKÖ so it comes out to close to the same:

We average about five weeks, two adults: 7x5x2=70 dumps.
Youíre getting 4 months, 5 days/week, one person: 23 x 4 x1 = 92 dumps.

Keeping the right moisture level is pretty critical for the functioning of these heads. This is the only real skill that might not come naturally to new users.

Iíve never used a CH, and have wondered about the lack of fan venting. I suspect it gets to the different designs of these heads. CH uses smaller holding tanks, and is supposed to be emptied more often (every two weeks seems to be the norm).

Both NH and AH are designed to be largely sealed off when not in use ó all except for the vent. This keeps a slight negative pressure in the main contain, ensuring any odours are vented outside (not that there is much). It also keeps constant air flowing to dry things out. The drying reduces the volume of the feces, but itís important not to get too dry. Too dry will impede the action of the head.
currently I use the same 5 gallon collection tank size you do now my urine tanks are only a gallon ( I have 3 on the boat) and I have to change tanks every 3 days or so.
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Old 18-05-2018, 14:07   #86
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

This is embarassing, but if you have a fiber poor diet as a lot would on a cruising mess schedule, how do you deal with all the liquidy poop you're gonna have? I'm planning on replacing mine with a C-head also, and this worries me.
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Old 18-05-2018, 14:19   #87
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

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This is embarassing, but if you have a fiber poor diet as a lot would on a cruising mess schedule, how do you deal with all the liquidy poop you're gonna have? I'm planning on replacing mine with a C-head also, and this worries me.
having a little extra dry peat to add take a care of any issues .
My big question is why would you have a fiber poor diet on passages or anywhere else for that matter?
If your really concerned carry a few cans of refried beans and eat a few burritos that will take care of the fiber issue quite well .
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Old 18-05-2018, 15:41   #88
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

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having a little extra dry peat to add take a care of any issues .
My big question is why would you have a fiber poor diet on passages or anywhere else for that matter?
If your really concerned carry a few cans of refried beans and eat a few burritos that will take care of the fiber issue quite well .
Good tip. more worried about crew and guests in re: diet. I can adjust mine for boat time (and its healthier too) don't quite like telling people 'you need to eat this!' Also some people need more fiber to produce nice solid stool.
I made the mistake of reading this thread while eating lunch earlier at work. ugh
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Old 23-05-2018, 05:50   #89
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

About the Urine ....

One dump a day ... dry it out and await another day, but what about the urine?
A healthy person drinking the recommended water every day, makes about a gallon ... one week and five urine filled jugs is not a happy thought.

If the liquid of Urine can be evaporated out, could the resultant "solid" be added to the solid wastes?

This has got me thinking that a "pool", of urine in a self contained .... let's call it an "apparatus", that allows, or concentrates sunlight(clear-for heat), along with air flow(small fan?), might be an interesting alternative to the real weakness of the desiccating system ... the URINE.

I've always heard one big advantage to the desiccating system was the time period before the "stuff", had to be taken off board ... not so with the urine.

The urine has to be addressed almost every single day ... takes up too much volume, weighs too much(being almost all liquid).

Solving the urine problem would allow the beauty of the desiccating system to truly shine.
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Old 23-05-2018, 06:24   #90
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Re: Composting toilet: rules, regulations, and "real life" use etc.?

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About the Urine ....

One dump a day ... dry it out and await another day, but what about the urine?
A healthy person drinking the recommended water every day, makes about a gallon ... one week and five urine filled jugs is not a happy thought.

If the liquid of Urine can be evaporated out, could the resultant "solid" be added to the solid wastes?

This has got me thinking that a "pool", of urine in a self contained .... let's call it an "apparatus", that allows, or concentrates sunlight(clear-for heat), along with air flow(small fan?), might be an interesting alternative to the real weakness of the desiccating system ... the URINE.

I've always heard one big advantage to the desiccating system was the time period before the "stuff", had to be taken off board ... not so with the urine.

The urine has to be addressed almost every single day ... takes up too much volume, weighs too much(being almost all liquid).

Solving the urine problem would allow the beauty of the desiccating system to truly shine.
The urine is not really a problem if you just dump the urine jug every evening (a 2-minute job). Mine goes over the side every evening. I suggest you try the composting toilet as it comes before making these changes. You will probably find that it is a workable solution used as the manufacturer delivers it.
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