Sunline RV Forum
Sunline User Photos

Go Back   Sunline Coach Owner's Club > Technical Forums > Modifications
Click Here to Login

Join Sunline Club Forums Today


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 09-08-2008, 07:44 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 351
SUN #549
frank
Home Made "Blue Tote"

I wasn't comfortable with dragging a blue tote along the rough roads found where we like to camp. The $200 price tag wasn't too appealing either. I wanted something that could stay in the bed of the pickup, be filled there, and dumped from there. No dragging, no lifting, no mess!

Here's my solution:





Not shown is the wooden "foot" it sits on in the bed of the pickup so it doesn't roll all over the place. It is used on it's side like the top picture. Total cost was $22 for the fittings & blade valve. The drums are had for free (sometimes a $5 charge). The tank foot was made from lumber scraps.

It is filled with a FloJet macerator pump. Filled through the top hole, dumped out the bottom with a standard sewer hose. The second (upright) picture wass to show the outlet fitting.

It's a 15 gallon polyethylene "tight head" (or "closed head") drum - they are also available in 30 and 55 gallon sizes. I had a 55, which was plenty of capacity, but it won't fit under the tonneau cover. The 15 was all I had available at the moment that would fit, but I have a pair of 30's on the way.

All the tight head drums have at least one 2" NPT female fitting in them. The fitting is usually filled with a bung (top & bottom views):




I removed the bung, and replaced it with a 2" NPT to ABS Slip adapter, then used some standard RV fittings to enable the sewer hose to be hooked up. Here's a detail on the fittings:




Once the 30 gallon drums arrive, I will simply unscrew the drain assembly and transfer it to the 30 gallon tank. I plan on have a pair of 30's in the back of the pickup, one dedicated to grey water removal, and one for fresh water fill. I will use a small 12V pump to transfer the water into the Sunline's tank.

These are polyethylene drums (same stuff an RV fresh water tank is made from), and are considered "food grade" (fda approved for food transport). Yes, I plan on using a NEW drum for fresh water, but I will use a used drum for the grey water. (much cheaper/free). I'll post some more pics when I have it all mounted up in the truck.

I already had the Macerator pump from when I bought the trailer with the full & leaking tanks(!!!), so this worked out to be an excellent solution for me.

- Frank
__________________

__________________
frank is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-08-2008, 08:03 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 357
SUN #132
Makers Mark
Wow Frank, that is a super job. I had played around in my head for something to "home build" a tote. Never in my "bean counter" mind did I envision something like that. Wish I saw this before I broke down and bought my 4-wheel blue tote. That is great.
MM
__________________

__________________
J & JL
1973 Sunline Competitor Pick-up Camper
2002 Sunline T-2363
2015 Rockwood 2608WS (SOB)
SUN # 132
Makers Mark is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2008, 07:14 AM   #3
Moderator
 
Tweety's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 2,233
SUN #128
Tweety
That is fantastic! But where did you get the tank?
Also, when boondocking (like at WalMart or BLM lands) and you run out of fresh water, where might you obtain more?
__________________
Pam
Lance 1475 "Snoopy"
2012 GMC Sierra 3500HD 4x4 D/A
2012 Arctic Fox 30U, SUNLINES - 2006 2753 "Tweety", 2007 QUE "QUEtSE", 2364, 1660
Tweety is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2008, 09:05 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 351
SUN #549
frank
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tweety
That is fantastic! But where did you get the tank?
Also, when boondocking (like at WalMart or BLM lands) and you run out of fresh water, where might you obtain more?
55s are EASY to get. Any car wash gets soap in them, most seem happy to give you one if you ask nicely. Last time we stopped in for one, the guy kept trying to get me to take more. Apparently, he has to pay to get rid of the empty ones. He had a half dozen empties and would've gladly let me take them all.

Soda bottling companies are also good for 55s, the local Coke bottler will let me take up to 4 at a time for $5 each. Not bad for a food grade drum, considering you know exactly what was in it before you got it.

The 15 came from a guy at work who got it from a Florist. Apparently they get liquid fertilizer in 15 gallon drums.

30s are TOUGH to find. There's a drum guy a few miles away who occasionally gets some used 30s, he will sell those for $20 each when he has them. I don't mind a used (unknown previous life) drum for waste water, but for my fresh water, I'm going to pick up a new one. The closest new drum distributor is in Camden, he stocks new 30 gal food grade and will sell for $50 each. Still much cheaper than any other "tank" option. For example, Tractor Supply carries a 35 gallon poly water tank, I believe it sells for $85. You can beat their price online, but due to the dimensions, UPS wants to ship it overweight and you get to be talking about $30-50 shipping charges. I'd gladly go for the tractor supply tank, but it's 2" too tall to fit under my tonneau cover. The 30 gal drum will fit with room to spare.

If anybody has any other thoughts on drum sources, I'd love to hear them.

As for finding water, I really have no idea. So far, we've stuck to the state parks, with the exception of the Meet & Greet this year. I'm sure we'll get better at conserving as we use the trailer more, but the onboard tank was *just* enough for us to make a weekend. I have a 6 gallon water can in case we need water, but lugging around 50 pound jugs is not my idea of a good time. Besides, it's a great excuse for me to make something!

- Frank
__________________
frank is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2008, 05:24 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
Steve Collins's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: New York
Posts: 1,846
SUN #264
Steve Collins is an unknown quantity at this point
Frank,

Nicely done!

One question in my mind, however. I just started using a "blue tote" on our last trip, and quickly learned that the tank definately needs to be vented or it will not fill very well, if at all. The air that is in the tank needs a place to go to as it is pushed out by the liquid coming in.

The blue totes have two male garden hose fittings with screw-on caps on them, one for filling and one for venting. The instructions that came with the tote specifically state to loosen the second cap for venting.

Your fresh water tank would likely need venting for filling as well. No problem when draining the water from the tank to the trailer; just loosen the upper plug.

So the question is, any ideas on venting your tanks?

One more issue, but much more easily solved:

I was downright annoyed with tank odors appearing under the trailer from the loosened vent fitting so I grabbed a 12' section of old garden hose and hung it from the drip rail at the top of the trailer and connected it to the vent fitting. That way the odorific air is expelled above the roof of the trailer. Same exact principle as the vent stacks on the waste plumbing system in our homes.

I think you may find a similar challenge when filling the waste tank.
__________________

'12 F250 4x4 Super Duty PowerStroke 6.7 diesel
2011 to present: '11 Cougar 326MKS
1999 to 2011: '99 Sunline T-2453
SUN264 * Amateur Radio kd2iat monitoring 146.52
Steve Collins is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2008, 03:11 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 351
SUN #549
frank
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Collins
So the question is, any ideas on venting your tanks?
Good point, Steve.

I took the easy way out on that. Since I will use the macerator pump to transfer the wastewater from the Sunline to the drum in the truck, I will only be dealing with a garden hose. The bung on the tank is plenty large enough to just stuff the end of the garden hose into the hole and still have plenty of room for air to escape.

This will be even more so when I switch to the 30 gallon drum - the 30s (and 55s) have two 2" bungs, while the 15 has one 2" bung and one 3/4" bung.

If I wanted to go to a "hard" connection from the hose to the drum, I think I would drill a hole in the side of the drum (since that's the top when laid on it's side) and install a bulkhead fitting there. Then cap the fitting, much like your blue guy. I very well may do this on the fresh water tank so that I can pick up a few extra gallons of capacity, since the water level will no longer need to be below the level of the topmost bung.

- Frank
__________________
frank is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-14-2008, 04:58 PM   #7
Moderator
 
JohnB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Ohio
Posts: 9,311
SUN #89
JohnB is an unknown quantity at this point
Frank

WOW, Great job and cool too.

As I was reading your post I thought, Ok how does gravity fill this…. Then I remembered “The Pump” from your beginning camper black tank adventures….

The you asked about ploy tanks, And my 1st thought was the TSC 35 gallon ones. Bought 2 as Water Buffalo’s for our Scout troop. Worked great. But you have been here and the tono is an issue.

Here is a thought. What about an actual RV fresh tank. They are flat and you can build a deck to go over it and put more stuff on top in the truck bed.

Cost, well I started to do a fresh tank search and the reading is sort of endless, but here is the first one. http://www.pplmotorhomes.com/parts/r...water-tank.htm with some searching the price may get better. They had a 42 gallon for $95 and a 30 gal for $79.

The RV surplus places may be an option. Like this one in northern IN. I almost went there this summer, my camping bud did and came back with a good find on camping furniture and tales of endless rows of all kinds of "stuff". I’ll be there myself next summer, hunting for something when we go back camping in that area again….. . They sell new and odd stock stuff. They list a 29 gal for $65 http://www.rvsurplussalvage.com/cata...ategory_id=117

Good luck and keep us posted on the outcome.

Hope this helps

John
__________________
Current Sunlines: 2004 T310SR - Fern Blue, 2004 T1950 - Fern Blue, 2004 T2475 - Nutmeg
Prior Sunlines: 2004 T2499 - Fern Blue
2005 Ford F350 Lariat, 6.8L V10 W/ 4.10 rear axle, CC, Short Bed, SRW. Reese HP trunnion bar hitch W/ HP DC

Google Custom Search For Sunline Owners Club
JohnB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-15-2008, 10:53 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 351
SUN #549
frank
Thanks John!

The actual fresh water tank is certainly an option. The killer with most of this stuff is that the item itself is pretty affordable, but the shipping is a killer because of the size.
__________________

__________________
frank is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 3 (0 members and 3 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Our "new" Sunline came home today Viking Sunline Travel Trailers 1 03-27-2010 08:50 PM
Sunline "SR" "Slide Room" Decal Availabl frank Accessories, Parts, Etc. For Sale 16 11-18-2009 03:09 PM
The adoption is final..."my" Sunline is home and h jsms264 Sunline Community 2 03-01-2009 11:30 AM
Link to photo's of "Semi" Ultra T-2363 with black pamwinn Sunline Travel Trailers 16 08-21-2007 07:17 PM
Bike Rack used as a Blue Tote Carrier PTHutch Modifications 2 06-28-2007 05:56 PM



» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Sunline RV or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:07 PM.