Warning – a poop story, you may not want to view

12\6\2014  Bahia de Navidad, Mexico

Warning – a poop story, you may not want to view

OK, lets get started then. On our way from Tenacatita to Bahia de Navidad, Mexico we decided to pump out. We opened the through hull valve, inserted the fuse and the macerator pump sounded fine only nothing came out of the boat. Damn. We, of course, had plans for Bahia de Navidad. First off we were going to inflate our Achilles 10.2 dinghy, then launch it from the bow and put some oil in the cylinders of the Honda 9.9 outboard and put it on the dinghy etc. We were going to hit a pool either at the Grand Isla Navidad Resort or Sands Hotel. (+523151041330 · Morelos 24, 48987 Barra de Navidad) Then provision, winterize the HVAC etc. But now no working toilet!

Once in Bahia de Navidad lagoon and anchored, we broke out the Sealand VacuFlush porta-potty we keep for these emergencies. Last time it was because I blew out the flappers in the macerator. I wrote about that already. That’s why now I remove the fuse to the macerator while closing the through hull valve, so it cannot be turned on by accident\purpose.

The next day we went into Bahia de Navidad by water taxi as we were not going to be denied some shore time. We had some breakfast and some WiFi etc.

When we got  back we started work removing the bedding as the holding tank and macerator are under the bed. 

Then we got the buckets, wet and dry rags etc for this dirty job. 

After removing the first hose and flapper and dumping the poo from the hose we saw that the flapper was still in good shape. We replaced it anyway and will use the old ones for emergencies. 

The other hose from the holding tank to the macerator was removed and then some poo came out and we removed the flapper. It was clogged but OK. We replaced it and re-assembled the macerator and tested it. Not working, well the pump was but no poo coming from boat. Next we removed the tank hose and put another hose on the macerator pump and into a bucket of water and tested the pump. It worked like a champ.

So there was a clog inside the hose or PVC pipe or elbow running down into the tank. All our entry points and exit points into the tank are on the top, that is how we installed them. Great for problems of this nature. The tank is 80% full of poo.

 We used our snake to get into the tank but it would not go all the way or even to the elbow. There was a clog.  But wait you say, what could clog this hose?

VacuFlush 500 series toilet (household size bowl)

We have always thrown our toilet paper into our VacuFlush 500 series toilet with never a problem. Some people use the “paperless method”, putting the paper in a waste bucket for later deposit in a trash container. We have and still do not see the need for that. It could be the hoses get real small inside from water stalagtite build-up. We regularly use CLR and it helps keep it clear. We would also replace the hoses rather than go to the paperless system.

Goes into holding tank with about an 70% elbow on top. 

Anyway, after pulling the snake out we noticed there seemed to be pieces of wood in the poo? We finally got the snake all the way down into the tank and re-connected the macerator and tried it again. Not good, it stopped shortl. So off with the hose again (not that easy of course) and then removed the flange and flapper. It was clogged with a poo/wood type of paste. OK what’s this paste stuff?

A long time ago (years) when we were installing the Sealand Macerator pump (we got it at a marine swap meet in Chua Vista California US) we drilled a hole in the top of the tank and I, for kickers and curiosity, took some pictures of the inside of the tank. Wow, there was white growth inside. Lots of it! So I posted this to the Sailnet form and was written back that this was a good thing. That whatever ate the poo and cut odors and to leave it. So we did. Now however I am thinking this wood looking stuff (about 1\8 the thickness of a tooth pick and less than 1\4 inch long) must be from the whatever growing there?


At any rate we did some rinsing and pumping out of the tank and then decided we would start using a tank chemical we have that controls whatever and odors.

So in the old pictures you can see the white substance and we think it grows high and effects one of the two tank gauges we have (a mechanical one).

Getting the Froli Bed System back together.

Bedding on settee.

All bedded up!

So we are back in action after a lot of clean up, of the holding tank area and porta-potty etc. We put all the bedding back and we are good and empty in the holding tank :)
Today we will get to the dinghy and anchor rode problem but definitely dinghy.

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