GOODBYE Marine Head & Holding Tank, HELLO Composting Toilet | Sailing Soulianis – Ep. 17

Kirk: Tell us what we
got in the mail today. Lauren: We got denatured alcohol! Just kidding. Kirk: Oh Lauren: We got an anchor. [Music] Kirk: What do we got here? Lauren: We’ve got 44
pound / 20-kilogram Rocna. It’s replacing a bent
CQR that was sacrificed when the boat was
rammed into a wall. Kirk: By not us. Lauren: Yeah so it bent the anchor.
Some people said it wasn’t a big deal and other people
said “that’s terrible.” If you have a bent anchor,
it’s going to keep wanting to unseat
itself, so I decided to get a different anchor,
a larger anchor, the new-school anchors and
one that’s not bent. We are hoping that it’s going
to fit on our bow roller. [Music] Kirk: That fits kinda nicely. Lauren: It does. [Music] [background conversation] Lauren: I’m stoked. [music] Lauren: Here’s your throne. So funny story: we’ve owned
this composting toilet longer than we’ve owned our boat, we
just haven’t opened it yet. Why would you buy a composting
toilet before you bought a boat? Kirk: Because we’re idiots. Lauren: We wanted to get
started on a project and we hadn’t closed on our
other boat officially. This was actually purchased
for the boat that we thought we were going to
buy and then, we didn’t. We ended up getting that boat. Kirk: What all we got in here?
When we decided between the C-Head, which is
this one, Nature’s Gate– Lauren: Nature’s Gate
is a toothpaste. Kirk: Nature’s Head? Lauren: Yes, I think
it was Nature’s Head. Kirk: Was the ease of
cleaning this unit. All the inside surfaces are very
smooth and instead of having to take the entire base container out of the
boat, you take just this bucket. Lauren: So then, what do you
do with that bucket? Kirk: That bucket
and then, chuck it. Lauren: You could put it
into like a plastic bag or something and just
throw it in a dumpster? Kirk: You could. That’s to keep the bugs out. It looks pretty, it does kinda look
like a throne right now. Lauren: That’s a very tall throne. So we need somewhere to
put our feet right? Kirk: Yeah Lauren: Our friends
Phil and Hadley flew in from California for the weekend. It just so happened that
Racine’s annual cardboard boat race was taking
place at the same time. [Music] Lauren: I’m glad we don’t
have a cardboard boat. [Music] Hadley: What else is there to do? [laughter] Phil: Those glasses look
good with that jacket. Kirk: Yeah? Do they have blue? Phil: They got everything. Lauren: Purple, green, blue Hadley: They got all the colors Phil: Yeah look like you’re doing something, haha! Hadley: I’ll take care
of the rope, baby. [laughter] Lauren: What did you think
of your first sail? Phil: It’s good to get
my sea legs back, just hold the wheel-
it’s called a helm. I loved it. Lauren: How did he do, Kirk? Kirk: What’s that? Lauren: How did Phil do? Kirk: How did what feel? [laughter] Phil: Hadley, did you throw up? Hadley: I did not throw
up and that’s a win. It was very relaxing after I got
past that initial bout of nausea. Phil: And you got snacks. Hadley: Oh yeah, the snacks. Kirk: There’s no better
feeling when you’re sailing than watching the other boats
go quickly behind you. Kirk: When you know that you’re
actually doing something right because I’ve been
that other boat many times. [laughter] Lauren: Hey, that dude’s in a Hobie. Hadley: I know, all kitted up Phil: I designed your kayak! Lauren: He works for Hobie. Phil: You like it? Kayaker: Awesome! Hadley: I made that! I did that. Phil: You like? Hadley: Hi. Lauren: Ooh another one. Kirk: Lauren we got four minutes. Lauren: Okay. You don’t usually do that. Phil: No. Hadley: I think,
he’s far enough from home that he feels
like he could do it. Lauren: Do you remember? Long
short or short long? Phil: Long short. [airhorn sounds] Lauren: Nice. Hadley: This is all for us? Lauren: Yes! Phil: Can we do a little loop while we’re under it? Hadley: Yeah, just park. Phil: Take our time. Kirk: Horn one. Hadley: Doing it. [horn sound] Lauren: I love that. They’re like, “You’re welcome.” [music] [background conversation] Kirk: Okay. Go back down. Oh god. [laughter] Lauren: Okay. Let’s
see what you got. Hadley: We’ve got a whole slew of stuff.
Phil what do we got? Let’s do everything we got. K let’s start here and we’ll spin to Superman. Phil: What? How am I
going to…? Hadley: You got this. [laughter] Phil: No problem. [laughter] Phil: One, two… Hadley: Wait, what? [laughter] [music] Lauren: Nice. Phil: Coming down! [laughter] [music] Kirk: All right. I feel like this mat needs
to come out of here, too. Lauren: This morning,
we took the boat out underneath both bridges
over to the other marina and pumped out our holding
tank for the first and last time because we
are ripping this out. We’re ripping out our head. Right there. We’re riping our holding tank
which is underneath the V-berth. And we are putting in a composting
toilet and we are both super excited about that
because of several reasons. The first one and grossest one being
of which the last time we were out on Lake Michigan, the boat
was heeling all over the place. I came forward and looked in the head
and saw that there was a bunch of– Kirk: Brown water. Lauren: Brown water pooling in the toilet and more so than
there should have been. Then, Kirk came down
later and tried to fix it and we ended
up with poop water- Kirk: Made it worse. Lauren: – all over the
bottom of the head pan, so that was gross
and disgusting. So, we are– Kirk: Pulling everything out
of the V-berth, so that we can get access to our holding tank
and get rid of the poopies. [music] Kirk: I hate flat heads. Whoever invented flat
heads is the worst. I can’t even see which way this lines up. Can you? Lauren: Yeah Turn the base with the screwdriver all the way to the right. Too far. Kirk: Okay. That’s clearly not going to work. Lauren: Man these are like painted in there. There we go. Kirk: It’s stripped with like one half of a thread left. Lauren: Ah, step one. Kirk: Surefire way to piss
off the next owner of your boat is to use a four-inch
flathead wood screw. Ok step two. We have our waste line,
this white one, out from the toilet. We have our vent
line up to the deck. We have our pump outline and we
have our cleaning line here. We need to disconnect
all of these, so that we can back this
tank out, which goes through the bulkhead
here, out of here and then, we can pull that
tank out of V-berth. Lauren: There are some hose
clamps that I could undo. Kirk: Come on. Lauren: Did any come out? Kirk: We didn’t have any come out of either of them. [music] Lauren: Okay. What’s next? Kirk: I don’t know which
one’s going to be worse. Hope that when we pull this off,
it doesn’t some flooding out. Time to bring in the big guns. Lauren: Check it out. All the hoses are cut
and disconnected and we’re ready to remove
the holding tank. Kirk: Okay, here we go. Lauren: Okay. Kirk: God. Lauren: Is there a lot
of water in there? Kirk: Yeah did any
come out at all? Lauren: No, not out
of the plastic bag, but the thing is this big black one. We didn’t put anything over that. Kirk: Oh eff. Yes, that would have
been disgusting. All right. So take three? Lauren: Yes. Kirk: Let’s hope this works. Lauren: Okay. Kirk: Get the black. Keep it up. Lauren: Okay. Kirk: Is it dripping? Lauren: Yeah, but it’s
just a couple of drops. Kirk: Okay. Coming through. Lauren: Oh sh–t There’s ton’s of the
stuff in the cockpit. Yes. Bye, holding tank! Kirk: That feels good. This could be very easy. Lauren: Could be? Kirk: Could be. So we don’t have to take
the toilet apart, so there is nothing nasty there. This white waste hose goes at a straight
angle through both bulkheads. If we can just pull
it all the way out of there, we don’t have to
take anything apart. All I have to do is un- Lauren: Screw the– Kirk: – screw the
toilet from the base. Lauren: Then, all that
pump and everything just stays together. Kirk: Yep. So that would be very, very nice. Lauren: Let’s see if
it works out that way. Kirk: Here we go. There. Cool. Lauren: Good? Kirk: Where did that hose clamp go? Lauren: Up top by your drill. Kirk: What would be the odds
of that? Man I’m getting good at this. We’re home free. Lauren: Both screws are out? Kirk: Yes there is one– Lauren: Or are those bolts,
where are they, love? Kirk: These are bolts. Lauren: Edumacate me. Kirk: Technically those
are like machine screws. We’re almost there. Lauren: No home free yet? Kirk: I just don’t know how hard
I’m going to be able to bend it, how close am I to pulling
that all the way through? Lauren: You got about
two and a half inches. Kirk: We could just pull
this white pipe off. And collect whatever water comes out of it. Lauren: That doesn’t sound good. Kirk: All right doesn’t mean there’s
water coming out right now. Lauren: Coming out of where? Kirk: I don’t know. Lauren: Okay, it’s out. Where’s the water coming? Kirk: From the pump handle. Okay, there we go. Lauren: It’s free? Kirk: It’s free. Lauren: Do you want me
to hold that tube up? Kirk: Yeah [music] Kirk: We did it. Success. Lauren: High five. I mean– Kirk: All right. Lauren: Now, we gotta put
the boat back together- Kirk: Yes. Lauren: – and we need to
install our composting toilet. Kirk: True. [music]

97 thoughts on “GOODBYE Marine Head & Holding Tank, HELLO Composting Toilet | Sailing Soulianis – Ep. 17

  1. Awesome! Kinda wish I wouldn't have watched it so soon after you released it…now I have to wait longer for the next one 😉

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but you guys are traveling the Midwest as of now? Do you have any plans to come through Indianapolis?? It would be so cool to meet you guys!

    Also, do either of you ever regret your decision to start living on a boat? Do you ever wish you could just go back to a normal home? Was it worth the money? etc…I've often heard it said that a boater's happiest days are when he buys a boat and when he sells it…Does that hold true for you guys?

    I appreciate the videos, and I can't wait to see how the throne fits!
    Thanks guys,

  2. I bet you are glad to get that stinky thing out of your boat👍
    Hoping you are happy with your new option.
    See you next time 😊

  3. Sounds like your original head just needed a new joker valve (fairly inexpensive, easy to do, and not as gross to change as you might think if you prepare a bit by thoroughly flushing, using a bit of bleach to disinfect the line). I probably will go for a composting unit in my boat eventually, because admittedly holding tanks do stink no matter how you slice it. My main hesitation is that in Canadian inland waters 9e.g., Great lakes) where I sail, composting heads are not legal as they are regarded to be the same as a porta-potty.

  4. We love our Hobie Outfitter Tandum. Of course we opted for the additional sail 😁.
    Love your new anchor too. 👍

  5. If you think that smells a decomposing turd pile will be an interesting aroma,hope you didn't throw hundreds of dollars worth of tank and head if you decide it's not for you 😂

  6. YUK! 🙂 what are the laws down there re composting toilettes and holding tanks?
    @jack rabbit, i thought porta-potty heads were ok up here?

  7. Go watch Sailing Uma, they just swapped out their composting head for a new head that has like a gallon holding tank.

  8. Talk about one step forward and two steps backwards, removing a perfectly good head with a leaky and inexpensive valve problem to be repaired and holding tank for something as messy as a new composting head. Weird way to go!

  9. hello greetings from barcelona spain a tip what about the composting toilet already Sailing Uma tried it and in the end they decided to change it I recommend that you watch their latest episodes they make ingenious and very reliable solutions
    If this translation is wrong, it is because of Google translator, waiting for more videos of yours

  10. Some countries you are required by law to have some kind of holding tank..Friends of mine did the same as you…Never got a chance to smell it , but they said the composting toilet smelled worst than the tank…you might not want to throw old toilet and tank out yet….Just sharing there toilet experience with you guys…….T.Gunz……..

  11. Look forward to the composting toilet going in. I'm about to do the same and have the same issue with the finished height due to the curve of the hull, not sure what to do.

  12. Great video. I am excited to see how the composting toilet works. It makes total sense in port but I wonder about its effectiveness at see and on long voyages. 🙂

  13. Your playful aerobics cracked me up ! I envy you guys living wild and free !! Keep the videos coming. We are looking forward to seeing more .

  14. AAarrgh. Don't install a composting toilet on your boat (or anywhere). It isn't accomplishing what you think it is and it will be a big hassle. Just use a proper regular marine toilet. It all goes into the ocean just like a billion fish do. The mechanism of "cleaning" if that's your issue, is dilution. Just 400 yards from the raw discharge pipe from the City of Buffalo, the traces were undetectable. That's right. Dilution makes it undetectable. All the composting stuff does is bread rats, regardless of where you dump it.

  15. Great episode. Tks for edumacating us on how the toilet was removed lol. Love the humorous banter between you too. Lot to like on this channel👍

  16. Always the best videos. Loved it. Laughed a lot at your friends' "yoga". Fingers crossed for not too much of a wait for the next one… 🙂

  17. Where you poop on a boat is a very CONTROVERSIAL topic as already clearly illustrated by Sailing Uma. In the video we only briefly mention one of the reasons we chose to go with a composting head, so here’s a few more:

    1. Our holding tank was a 12-gallon tank. That’s TINY. We’d get 3 or 4 days out of that with full-time use before needing to pump it out. As full-time cruisers, that wasn’t going to work for us. We didn’t want to be paying for pump outs all the time, nor did we want to have to try to find a marina every time our holding tank got full. And lastly we don’t want to be pumping out in an anchorage.
    2. The head smelled. It just did. Always.
    3. We’ve been using our composting toilet for a while now, and believe it or not, it’s not the solids that smell, it’s the liquids, and really only when you open the lid. HOWEVER, we’ve been told that rinsing out the liquids container with a little vinegar takes care of this. We have yet to try it, and are excited that this might solve this issue. And last but not least it’s a gallon milk jug which means we can get a new one almost any time we want and get rid of the smell.
    4. We’ve gained 10+ cubic feet of storage space under our v-berth by getting rid of the holding tank, as well as space in the hanging locker after removing the hoses. (Storage is super valuable!)
    5. Our pump handle leaked, which in and of itself wasn’t an unfixable issue, however, it portended what could happen when you store many gallons of liquid waste inside your boat. It is possible one day some other part of the system could become compromised — a hose clamp, a hose, the tank itself — and we end up with poop water everywhere. This is not something we wanted to continue to worry about.
    6. We like the idea of simplifying as many systems aboard as reasonably possible, and to us a composting toilet makes the entire head system much simpler.

    We aren’t advocating that this is the best decision for everyone, but it has been the best decision for us. Thanks so much for watching, and we appreciate your thoughtful comments!

    Lauren & Kirk

  18. Holding tank area or tank could be another fuel tank , if you don’t need the room. Did you ever look at the rareitan (sp) composting toilet?

  19. I used to think composting toilets were pretty gross "filthy hippy" stuff. Then I helped service a broken macerating head. I learned. The hard way. {shudder}.

    The only hassle is that on most boats actually composting isn't really an option – it takes a few months to break down into garden-safe compost, so you need multiple containers and store them somewhere not-cold. Easy in a detached house with garden, do-able on a van, I haven't seen it happen on a small yacht yet. So "composting head" usually ends up in landfill, which is not ideal. Pooping over the side is better once you're offshore, but on land "composting" is kinda the least wrost option for boat-board. IMO, anyway.

  20. Congrats on another successful project! You kids work very well together and maybe you should get married! Was there any value to the old toilet/tank? You know…..slightly used pooper!

  21. Im new here, great vid. Yer i Was one of many who gave uma a hard time about their holding tank pipe thingy, its obviously a delema.

    Sounds like uma got rid of their bucket thingy cos it was a pain to empty. Doesnt seem like there is an easy way. Please give an update on how you go with the bucket. Doesnt really look like it composts, just a bucket…Sounds just as smelly but be good to know how it goes. What about a vent fan in the head to remove the smell?

    I suppose you are stuck between a smelly tank and a smelly bucket.. Hope it works out for you.

  22. Great work guys. I applaud you on tackling this issue and much better solution than Sailing Uma imho. Not that it's a competition, but I love to see your responsible actions over quick workarounds.

  23. Need to check laws, some waterways will not allow composting toilet, must have a holding tank……I think Florida is that way, but I could be wrong

  24. Sorry guys but I think you should have kept to original system and got it perfect working order. And have the composting toilet for use when you can and the original system for a backup or when you sell the boat in the future.

  25. As always another great video although I always find myself just getting into it when……..It ends. Thanks for sharing this amazing adventure.

  26. Great great great episode. If you guys lived in Sheboygan we would totally stalk you and make you be our friends!

  27. I don't like to even think about poop in such a confining space as a sailboat, especially considering that sometimes awful and unreachable space called the bilge. I knew, however, that you would make something somewhat nice about the subject, and you did not disappoint. I would probably just resort to adult diapers and rig up a massive slingshot at the stern to get rid of them.

  28. If you still have the bent anchor and it's servicable, take it to a metal shop and ask them to straighten it to keep as a spare.

  29. Composting toilet? Is there really such a thing? A compost pile takes months of proper maintenance but your saying this is done right under your own ass? Comon, your smarter than that. You may as well be crapping in the litter box with the cat. Don't get me wrong, if you want to bag your shit that's fine with us but they ain't no composting being done in that magic bucket. I guess composting toilet sounds "environmentally friendly" and better then "human litter box" but if your just going to put it in a plastic bag and dump it… How is that environmentally friendly?

  30. I have fixed/removed several boat pump out systems, and I can recommend any system that gets you out the risk of a godawful sewage leak

  31. Hiya C-Head poop-mates.

    We just ripped out both heads on our boat in favour of 1 C-Head.. Next up is blanking all those redundant through-hulls and deck pump outs.

  32. I'd like the idea of a compost toilet but it's kind of pointless on a boat unless you're going to start a garden then you have something to use the compost for. keep it simple dump it overboard yes is a few situations you need to use the holding. You might find it difficult to get sawdust for the toilet one more thing taking up storage space bags of sawdust on your boat I wonder if that stuff is specially treated so it doesn't get moldy and musty.

  33. Taking out the head was a shame. A conventional head and tank just need a little but of annual maintenance and they work just fine. A joker valve is dirt cheap and even having an extra head pump is inexpensive. If you are off shore (US rules) you can easily pump the holding tank. I'm afraid your new setup will be a hassle more than you realize.

    Sail on. Love your channel.

  34. Great video. I am enjoying watching you two. Hope the new pooper works out well. I think I my convert one of our heads to a compost type as you have done. I will check back in a year and see how you like it.

  35. My wife and I switched over to a composting toilet last year. After the install we had a two week sail on the west coast of Florida. My wife initially questioned the whole concept, but now she is a believer. Absolutely no smell, and we didn't install a vent fan. The real test came when we left our boat. I disposed of the gallon jug of liquid, but left the solid bucket full. THREE MONTHS later I returned to the boat expecting it to be "ripe." Instead, there was no oder at all. I disposed of the contents of the bucket, which was like dirt and reinstalled the solids bucket fore the next use. So glad we switched.
    Enjoy your videos,
    Alan & Patti

  36. You 2 work as a great team. Waaaaay less cussing than I expected this episode. Lol
    Keep it up, living vicariously through you both.

  37. The title totally sold me! Old man winters called the s#$% poop! You guys are great, been fun watching the whole journey, safe travels!

  38. Lots of laughs that was a very funny video watching you do that if you think that was a s*** job you should have work with me before I retired the job I used to do would have made you sick you would have never come back lots of laughsand I can prove it because I have friends that said they could do it and after an hour on the new job they would quit and not even ask for that hours pay they would say lesson learned lots of laughs but it payed damn good

  39. Good day, nice moves with the tank and head removals, I hope ours goes as well. I'm looking forward to your feedback on the C-head installation, and experience-based performance information. Thanks.

  40. Hi, nice moves on the tank and toilet removal. I'm looking forward to your feedback on the installation and experience-based use of the C-head. Thanks

  41. If the anchor got bent then it can just as easily be unbent, but if you like splashing cash on shiny new anchors who am I to argue.

  42. CQR anchors suck anyway, bent probably worse yes. You got a Rolls instead! Nice one. Rocna or Spade would be my preference. Depending on the boat which I buy, because when there's a good alternative already mounted you can save some money leaving it there. But CQR would go off when going for my first big trip and replace with something better.

  43. you know if you would have asked I could have saved you a crapload of money! no pun intended what's wrong with 7 gallon plastic pails with heavy duty garbage bags inside , put a little bit of floor dry you know oil dry throw in a cup there you go, rap it up and throw in the garbage…Or kitty litter ! Tada !!!

  44. You could have used a VHF instead of making noise pollution… You know somebody could have a night job and sleep during the day.
    I still like you guys very much!

  45. I find it interesting that some channels are upgrading from compost toilet to tank, and others are upgrading from tank to compost.

  46. I'll never understand why the U.S. sailors are using these ugly composting toilets. In Europe poop is more safe to environment that showersoap or shampoo. It is 100% biological and will never be a problem for the environment when this will reach the ocean. The content of a composting toilet have to place to the garbage. This will be a much bigger problem for the environment because germs and bacteria will multiply in that surroundings and will pollute other persons.

  47. Make sure you can off the overboard pump line and make sure it's water tight those thruhules can sink you if they leak

  48. My boat has a Lavac, a recent installation that was fine until recently. it has started to get funky. One of the tank connectors has a slight leak. Is your composting toilet funky? Be honest! Also, when emptying and re-prepping the beast, does everyone in a five-boat radius know it? Would you recommend a composting head? I like the simplicity of it and the idea of eliminating the holding tank, the in-take and all plumbing.

  49. The best wood screws/drivers (IMHO) are Robertson – aka square. They rarely strip, are self seating, you get a huge amount of force, the screw can often be placed on the screwdriver for sideways or upsidedown work, often work when the screws are painted over and work well one handed. The downside is they are not well known in many places in the USA and you can apply so much torque that if it's a cheap screw you can twist the head right off.

    So much better than Phillips which are almost as bad as 'common' slot heads.

  50. I'm in the same situation. I hate my toilet and will be removing it this weekend. I don't have a replacement picked out yet, but whatever it will be, it will be better than a tank water and poop. I have an Irwin 33.

  51. I just ended up with water overflowing 🤢🤮
    Thank you so much for this detail video it’s very helpful. The teamwork is amazing

  52. I bet that brand of toilet got tossed over the side after about 3 weeks. Looks way too small. Luck, regardless.

  53. Standard marine toilets smell, incorrectly maintained systems smell worse. That they vent is an inescapable reality. Pee over the side or into a bucket. Pump the poo as frequently as possible.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *