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Author Topic: Tank help please!!!!!  (Read 3876 times)
John316
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« on: August 28, 2009, 07:11:37 AM »

Okay, 13 days until departure.

We are trying to figure out how to attach our toilet to the black tank. We had purchased a rubber grommet, and were planning on using that. The problem is our tank walls are a half inch thick, and the grommet is designed for eighth inch walls.

How do we attach?

I would greatly appreciate any help!!!

God bless,

John
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« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2009, 07:13:08 AM »

Need pictures
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« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2009, 07:41:33 AM »

John, are the tanks Poly or ABS I may have a screw in fitting for the ABS I can ship to you 

good luck
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John316
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« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2009, 07:44:51 AM »

So how do you all do it?

The first one is of the rubber grommet that isn't the right size. Our tank is thicker than that grommet allows.


God bless,

John
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« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2009, 07:47:02 AM »

I used a plastic spin-weld fitting instead of the grommet. Personally I believe it to be a better seal, and from there used standard screw-on ABS fittings.
Then it doesn't matter what your tank size is...
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cody
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« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2009, 07:47:21 AM »

Do they make a screw fitting for the 4 inch inlets that you can slide into the hole with a gasket and then tighten a nut or something on the backside cause a person could almost get their hand into the hole to tighten it, that would seem the most secure way but I've never seen one, I'm getting ready to fight the same battle but mine are the black abs tanks with the 1/8 walls.
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John316
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« Reply #6 on: August 28, 2009, 07:51:43 AM »

We will try this.

God bless,

John
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« Reply #7 on: August 28, 2009, 07:52:55 AM »

Could you not just machine a recess into the tank? I'd expect the material the tank is made from could be worked with regular tools - perhaps a router if you've got access, or simply a carefully-used angle-grinder with a sanding disc (my universal tool for numerous jobs, and surprisingly delicate when required).

Jeremy
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« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2009, 07:54:10 AM »

Here is another that shows roughly where the pipe will enter.

Thanks.

God bless,

John
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« Reply #9 on: August 28, 2009, 07:55:40 AM »

John, measure you opening for me and I'll see if I have anything that will work for you  


good luck
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John316
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« Reply #10 on: August 28, 2009, 07:59:33 AM »

This one shows the rubber grommet that we have, but is too small. If it allowed a thicker wall, we would be good.

The company that made the tanks for us recommended against spin welding. He said that with a tank that size, if you aren't a pro, don't do it. He said that the rubber is better, because it allows some flex, and isn't very ridged.

Cody, we might be stuck doing a bulkhead for the toilet. We will see.

God bless,

John

Clifford, our posts just crossed. Out toilet pipe is going to be 3". That means that we need the grommet to be 3.25 (for a tight fit). We also have three vents that we were going to put in the same way. Those would be 1.5" so we would need. 1.75 (for a tight fit).

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« Reply #11 on: August 28, 2009, 08:01:15 AM »

Here is the last one. This one shows that the tank (sorry I forgot to put a tape measure in the pic) is .5" thick.

Thanks a lot. I think that we will probably be overnighting whatever we figure out.

God bless,

John
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« Reply #12 on: August 28, 2009, 08:03:07 AM »

When I built my plywood/fiberglass tanks years ago, I just used an ordinary toilet flange siliconed to the tank and held with stainless screws and nuts.  I was able to reach through the flange to hold the nuts while I tightened the screws.  A short length of pipe and a rubber coupling will put you one the road in no time.
« Last Edit: August 28, 2009, 08:05:21 AM by Len Silva » Logged


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« Reply #13 on: August 28, 2009, 08:19:08 AM »

John, everything I have is ABS glue on fittings for ABS tanks sorry 

good luck
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« Reply #14 on: August 28, 2009, 08:20:47 AM »

Thanks for the try Clifford. I appreciate it.

Anybody else? How did you connect to your tanks?

God bless,

John
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« Reply #15 on: August 28, 2009, 08:27:41 AM »

Jeremy, I just saw your post.

I am not sure about machining a recess. I assume that you are referring to cutting a hole the exact size of the pipe. If so, we would like to have a seal of some sort on there.

.....my brain is hurting by now Sad. We are trying to figure something out....

God bless,

John
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« Reply #16 on: August 28, 2009, 09:28:53 AM »

You can't get inside the tank to install the bulkhead - right?  But you could reach through the "big" hole to install a bulkhead for the vent fitting.  If it is an awkward reach I have installed bulkheads by threading a wire between the two holes and then sliding the fitting along the wire to the hard to reach location where you can grab it from the outside and pull it through the hole.  As for the main hole the idea of bolting the fitting in place by reaching through the hole sounds like a winner to me.
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« Reply #17 on: August 28, 2009, 09:41:08 AM »

I did not see where you identified the material of the tank.  If it is polypropylene or polyethylene , you can weld the fitting with a plastic welder because those materials cannot be glued.  You would need to weld like materials.

This company has many plastic fittings, like clamping a gasket between tank and fitting.
http://www.usplastic.com/catalog/default.asp

Use a rubber connector (from Lowes or Home Depot) and clamps to connect tank fitting to toilet fitting.  This give some give and allows easier repairs if needed.

Ed Roelle
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« Reply #18 on: August 28, 2009, 09:45:23 AM »

Hi John, I will try my hand at this. All I can tell you is what we did. Here is a link to our blog, I will start there.

http://singinglandcruiser.blogspot.com/search/label/toilet

Then I placed the black in the bay but did not affix it to the floor. Then we went to Home Depot and built the ABS drainage piping right on the store floor. We used S/S Tanks so a 3" no hub connector was used to connect the 3" ABS pipe to the tank.
For the toliet, we used a standard flange 4" to 3" (as seen in the blog) and a "FELT" gasket. Hope this helps, M&C  Grin

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Have you thought of taking the tank to a RV service center and have them install that fitting?
« Last Edit: August 28, 2009, 10:01:03 AM by Singing Land Cruiser » Logged

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« Reply #19 on: August 28, 2009, 10:13:21 AM »

John and Clifford,

From the photos, the tank looks like ABS, and your pipe appears to be ABS.  I know most use the grommet technique, but why not use ABS glue on the inlet (toilet and vents) pipes?  Just curious, in case I run into a similar problem.

Chuck
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« Reply #20 on: August 28, 2009, 10:26:07 AM »

John,
   The best answer is:  1. Find out from the tank maker what material the tank is made of.  2.  Purchase couplings in, made of the same material, 3" FPT and 1 1/2" FPT.  3. Purchase plastic welding rod of the same material.  4. Cut the couplings in half to make 2 threaded inserts from each.  5.  Weld the couplings in place in each hole holes at at the location you chose.  6. Test by installing plugs in each hole and filling tank with water. 7. Repair any leaks and repeat step 6.  
   If you don't know how to 'hot air weld' plastics or you lack the equipment, find someone who has the equipment and knows the technique.  Welding in the 4 fittings is about a 1 hour job.  (I'd gladly do it if you brought the 'kit' to me here in Kentucky.)  Once you have the threaded inserts in place use a threaded adapter on the outlet valve and short pieces of pipe, threaded on one end to plastic clamped couplings to connect to the bus plumbing.
   An alternative that is ,IMHO far inferior is to use a router around each hole to reduce the thickness of the tank to the 1/8" required by the grommets you have.
Regards
Jerry 4107-1120
« Last Edit: August 28, 2009, 10:36:47 AM by Jerry Liebler » Logged
Airbag
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« Reply #21 on: August 28, 2009, 10:40:32 AM »

John try these guys they make the stuff you need and for waste tanks.

http://www.polyfab.biz/HDPE_couplings_flanges.htm?gclid=CLWKk8zyxpwCFSYoawodPGTAJg

http://www.icontechltd.com/productcart/pc/Holding-Tank-Fittings-and-Accessories-c37.htm
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« Reply #22 on: August 28, 2009, 12:36:33 PM »

My comment is to incorporate the/any rubber material in the connection as per all RV designs.

John
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« Reply #23 on: August 28, 2009, 05:14:24 PM »

Thanks for the replies!!!

First off. The tanks are polyethylene. One of our gray tanks is roto molded, the others are welded together. Our black tank, that was made with a fitting in the wrong place, was shipped back today. They will fix it, and we will have it Wednesday.

Great idea BoboftheN. Thanks for the tip. If we go with bulkhead fittings, you can bet that we will use your idea.

Ed, thanks for the link. Great resource, and good idea.

M&C, Thanks for the info. That helps. We would take it to somebody, but nobody has the fittings, and has never worked with a .5" tank. Theirs are always thinner. So since they don't know how, and I don't, that puts us in the same boat (except our wallet is staying the same thickness Grin Grin Grin).

Chuck, the tank is Polyethylene.

Jerry, that is a kind offer. We live in Kansas, so it would be a bit of a drive. I have tried to find somebody around here that can weld polyethylene, but they can only weld polypropylene. I agree, though, I like the welding idea.

Rick, thanks for the links. I like some of those flanges.

JohnEd, what do you mean by your comment?

That said, here is what we have come up with. We will take those connectors (that are to small), and we are going to cut the lower half off. Then we will use it as normal, except securely clamp the pipe, so it can't come out, and will stay in the tank. We are thinking about then screwing a flange over the top of the grommet to keep that in place.

Thanks again for the replies!

God bless,

John
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« Reply #24 on: August 28, 2009, 06:28:10 PM »

John,

The preferred layout is with the toilet directly over the opening in the black tank.  By design.  There is a stub tube sticking up from the tank and the toilet flange outlet is a stub 3" tube, as well.  Connecting those two "pipes" is one of those flex rubber connectors with the hose clamps on both ends.  The rubber coupling lets you disconnect the black tank to remove it and it also gives you flex coupling that won't crack the pipes when in use.  A big plus is that the upper and lower pipes only need to be close to be connected cause the rubber is, well, rubber.  Even the ones that have tanks that are not directly under the toilet and have 45 degree slopes to the pipe also have a section of rubber coupling.  I have seen tanks that only had a few inches of clearance connected with a short rubber coupling.

My apologies if I weren't clear.  Happens all the time to me so don't feel guilty.  I hope that is better.  Call me at 541 915 083two and we can talk.  Most of the posts here have gone into more detail than I can and the ideas are faultless.  I was only adding that r couplings are also, or should be, part of the design.  If anybody has info that contradicts, I am all ears.

God luck,

John
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« Reply #25 on: August 28, 2009, 06:35:40 PM »

John,
   Anyone who can weld polypropylene can weld polyethylene, they just need the right coupling and rod. They just haven't tried it, the technique is exactly the same and the temperatures are very near the same also.  BTW there are two kinds of polyethylene, high density and low density and you need the correct match in both rod and fitting to successfully weld.
Regards
Jerry
« Last Edit: August 28, 2009, 06:41:56 PM by Jerry Liebler » Logged
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« Reply #26 on: August 28, 2009, 06:41:11 PM »

My tank fitting is a standard off the shelf bronze plumbing flange with four mounting holes. The walls of my tank are also 0.5 inches thick. The four mounting holes are 1/4 X 20 tapped right into the plastic.

Mine started to leak after 21 years so I backed out the screws, installed a new gasket with some sealant, reset the screws and no more leak.

The tapped holes went right through the tank so when I reset the screws, I made sure to dip each screw into sealant before threading them in.

Paul

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« Reply #27 on: August 28, 2009, 06:48:55 PM »

John
Where in Kansas? I ask that because I know a man who lives between Joplin and Neosho MO, just over the border from southeast Kansas who welds all the time. He just built our grandaughter a sand box using 1/2" flat stock.

Rob
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« Reply #28 on: August 28, 2009, 07:13:21 PM »

Thanks a lot you all!

JohnEd. Thanks for the explain. Makes a lot of sense, and we will do that. You made yourself clear now, thanks. We will also do that for all of our other connections. Good ideas. Our head sits right over the black tank. A straight drop.

Jerry, We talked with a guy that welds all the time commercially, and he said that he had never been able to get it right welding the polyethylene. That is where I got my info from.....

Paul. Sounds interesting. What do you mean by a off the shelf bronze flange? Could you post a pic? That would really help out. I assume that you are talking about how you connect the toilet, and gray water connections.

Rob, we are north of Kansas City.

Thanks again.

God bless,

John
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« Reply #29 on: August 28, 2009, 08:56:26 PM »

John,

I can't take a picture as the flange on my tank is hidden behind the hot water heater. Here is a link to a PVC version and it is similar to what I have on my tank. This sample is schedule 80 so it is expensive but a schedule 40 would be a lot less expensive.

I don't know how to get the following address to be an active link but if you paste it into the address line of your browser, it should work. http://www.usplastic.com/catalog/variant.asp?catalog%5Fname=USPlastic&category%5Fname=13670&product%5Fid=1221&variant%5Fid=27340&cookie%5Ftest=1

As I said in my prior post, line it up, drill the four mounting holes, run a 1/4 X 20 tap through the holes, make a gasket, coat both sides of the gasket with whatever sealant goop you like and run the screws.

Once the flange is mounted, any PVC pipe fitting will thread into the flange.

Hope this helps.

Paul

 
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« Reply #30 on: August 28, 2009, 09:22:03 PM »

See if this is what you need. http://www.plumbingsupply.com/bulkhead.html Maybe thread the tank, and screw the fitting in the tank without using the backup nut, add a nipple and connect to your pipe with rubber hose to absorb vibration and prevent cracking.
« Last Edit: August 28, 2009, 09:30:10 PM by mahala1 » Logged
John316
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« Reply #31 on: August 29, 2009, 05:30:08 AM »

Thanks, Paul. That helped, and I can picture it now.

Mahala, thanks for the link. We have considered something like that.

God bless,

John
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cody
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« Reply #32 on: August 29, 2009, 06:28:27 AM »

wow, mahala, how can they justify 180 dollars for a 4 inch fitting.
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« Reply #33 on: August 29, 2009, 12:56:02 PM »

See if this is what you need. http://www.plumbingsupply.com/bulkhead.html Maybe thread the tank, and screw the fitting in the tank without using the backup nut, add a nipple and connect to your pipe with rubber hose to absorb vibration and prevent cracking.


I have a three inch one like that one that I never used.  I couldn't figure out a way to tighten the fitting.  My tanks are polyethylene.  I was going to cut a hole and then cover it with more polyethylene, but a local plastics welder said the plastic would eventually crack.

I got my fitting from Indelco Plastics and it was between $30 and $40.  A lot less money than plumbingsupply.com.
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« Reply #34 on: August 29, 2009, 08:37:35 PM »

Darned BBS software erases a post on file size errors (192k )
I had the instructions and tools listed too!

Get one of these. ( your favorite plumbing supply house )

Cut in half ( not split )

Take clamps off.

Check to make sure the rib where the clamp was slips into the hole
and locks in place. Get your 3" PVC or ABS and cut a stub that you
will insert into the rubber sleeve once it is in the hole. ( use silicone )
on final assembly. Once the rubber is in, Shove the PVC or ABS into
the rubber fitting which expands it and seals the hole.

These are available to fit 2 through 6 inch pipes.

For a 3" use a 3.5 Inch hole saw. For a 2" use a 2.5 Inch hole saw.

This allows for a flexible joint which is not subject to breaking from
vibration or flexing. Oh.. Also since the stub is sticking down into the
top of the tank a bit, It gives you a little wiggle room to get things lined up later.
I have never had a fitting break or leak using this method.. It's almost too easy..
« Last Edit: August 29, 2009, 08:41:06 PM by DrDave-Reloaded » Logged

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« Reply #35 on: August 30, 2009, 05:59:09 AM »

Thanks a lot guys. I think we have it just about figured out, thanks to you all.

God bless,

John
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