Toilet duty galore!

So, today I’ve been completing port side of the boat regarding the electrics. Finally done, so that I can start putting things back again, nice!

Started in the galley, putting up the liner in the ceiling. It’s a plywood sheet wrapped in vinyl, to make it prettier. Actually the liner isn’t really needed, since the ceiling in itself is smooth and made to be visible. But somewhere down the road someone decided that it was required to have an inner liner, I would guess it was added at the same time as the electrical was redone.

Is the electrical redone? Parts of it for sure, I presume that it wasn’t working as expected, or they wanted more lights in the salon. Under the liner there is a whopping total of four light sockets. After the modification there is eight, with plenty of light. Am I satisfied with that? No, but it will do for now. I got plans!

But, what about the toilets, or heads as they are called on a boat? In my hunt for electrical wires I’ve taken apart the interior a bit. Above the galley, the heads and some holes I needed to cut open to get access. But now the time has begun to put things back together again! Very satisfying.

But as always, you start with one thing, sees another thing that needs fixing and totally of a sudden you are doing something totally different than planned.

The forward head is the one I usually use, brushing teeth, washing hands or peeing. Primarily because it is adjacent to my quarters. And yes, it all flushes out to the ground. The alternative would have been to go outside to do my business and it would have the same result.

The forward head has been a bit smelly though, like a urinoar pretty much, even if I hadn’t used it for some time. Especially warm and sunny days. I’ve been worried that it might be a leak somewhere, or that the hoses had started to degrade so they let funky air permeate though the barrier. When I opened up the panel in front of the black water tank, I got the answer.


For some reason the thread where you attach the venting hose had seen better days. Someone had tried to use teflon tape (that white, non-sticky kind that you use when you make sure pipes are properly sealed), doesn’t really help worn threads though. As an effect the hose had popped off and the vent was venting into the boat. So. Not. Nice. I tried to get the hose back on, but the smallest of force would pop it off again, and the hose was enough for that to happen.

I did notice that there was some thread left on the tank when I screwed on the fitting. A plan started to form. If I cut the top part of the thread the rest would probably be just fine to attach the hose to. So.. how to cut the plastic? I don’t have a saw, except the circle saw and I realized that it would be too brutal to use and probably would require to remove the tank all together, something that I wasn’t too keen to do. Try using a knife? Yeah, no. That would take ages to do. MY GRINDER! Why have I forgotten about the multitool of most boat builders? Like cutting butter. Awesome! Only thing I didn’t consider was the thickness of the disc, so I cut a tiiiny bit to much. So I had to McGyver a spacer to make sure that the hose fitting would seal properly. A knife, a cap to a milk container and a little patience and it was complete – a blue ring. Perfect. Mission accomplished. Now I could put the head back together.

Moved to the aft head to attach a cable conduit, three screws and a five minute job. Some cleaning and I was ready to reattach the conduit. First screw was simple, nice! Soon I can move on and finish starboard side too! Second didn’t really reach, even if I pushed a bit, so I got a screw that was just a smidge longer. Oh, yes, it really bites in and I screw it in tight. Nice! Starting to look for the last screw and then…


The second screw had broken loose! I almost crapped my pants! But, no, it is still screwed into the plywood block behind. It was the plywood block that had split, not along screw, but horizontally! The glue in the plywood was so weak that it delaminated. Wow! Talk about poor quality. I presume, since it was in the shower area, the wood has been moistened and then dried out over the years so many times that the glue wasn’t doing its job any more. Ah, well, I made a note about it and started screwing in the third screw. It finds the wood, but it will never really bite into it. I get a longer screw again, just to see this plywood block split just like the other. And just for good measure the first block split later on too. Oh, great.

The glue attaching the plywood block to the ceiling was just fine, it still held on to both parts. So I need to figure out how to fix this, it was actually the first thing I’ve broken on the boat myself, even if the cause was poor quality glue, so only half my fault! It will have to wait until I’m done with the electrical though, I don’t want to start another project.

Oh, I got some new toys today too! First I got a parcel with the cable ties that I’ve ordered a while ago that was marked as delivered, even if I didn’t get them. They was delivered to one that workers at the boat yard, at his home, in another village some 20 km away. Because lockdown. Did I mention they are 55 cm long? Over half a meter! Yeah, I think I overordered this time, maybe I can use them to moor if I run out of ropes. I also got my plunge base assembly, for my router trimmer that haven’t arrived yet, and the router bit set. I also got the book “Boatowner’s Mechanical and Electrical Manual: Repair and Improve Your Boat’s Essential Systems” by Nigel Calder – it is recommended to anyone that owns a boat and will be interesting to read.

That’s all, folks!

Leave a Reply

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

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.