Head and Fridge Are In

July 4, 2016  Hours spent building to date:  2,677

All engineers who design marine toilet mounting systems should have to PERSONALLY install at least three heads in a box that is 24 inches wide, 42 inches deep and 60 inches high with the bowl shoved against a flat wall– the typical space real people have to deal with.

More on that later, but the refrigerator and head are in.  The fridge is large for a boat this size, but after 30 years of lugging ice to various boats I have owned, I wanted a good one (Isotherm) and they use so much less electricity that they used to I could go king size.  It fit like a glove and no wonder, since the fridge determined the size of the countertops, deckhouse door and passageway, and was the key element in the whole galley design.  So it had been measured at least 100 times.  Had it not fit, The Tardis Project would have gone to Valhalla soaked in dinghy gas.

The head is a Raritan Marine Elegance, an electric macerating fresh water model that I first used on our Great Loop trip.  It is a great piece of equipment.  Used daily by two people for a year on Memsahib it never clogged, used a paltry amount of a water and electricity, and since it flushed with fresh water, never smelled.  (Marine heads usually flush with salt water, which combined with sewage, creates a gas output equal to that of  a small dairy herd).

But the Marine Elegance, is bolted to three clamps on rubber mounts that have a retaining device to hold the nuts while the bolts go in.  The trouble is that said device DOES NOT retain the nuts, which come loose and simply spin or fall out all together along with the retainer.  This happened with the Memsahib installation and I distinctly remember putting sticky tape on a stick fished through the back of the bowl to hold everything together while I tightened down the bolts.  Tardis is a much smaller installation space, so I measured exactly according to the instructions and the holes and nuts seem to line up perfectly.  But the first pressure from the bolts and there went the nuts, one spinning and one falling out altogether.  To finally get the bowl in, I had to take apart all the plumbing on one side to access the nut, putting a lot of pressure on the joints, which I pray did not get loose.  The other side was worse, and I had to totally dismantle the back panel of the compartment and disconnect the shower to get to it.  The front bolt was no better.  I could see the nut right at the hole, but it would not take the bolt until I pulled it forward using a bolt with a different thread size.

But it is done, and we will now move back outside the boat to finish the trim and start painting.

The Isotherm fridge in all it's glory.

The Isotherm fridge in all it’s glory.

Someday I will need to learn how to build doors

Someday I will need to learn how to build doors

The Raritan Marine Elegance Head

The Raritan Marine Elegance Head

The shower -- such as it is -- pulls out from the box on the wall that also holds the hot and cold controls.

The shower — such as it is — pulls out from the box on the wall that also holds the hot and cold controls.

From my other life, that's me in the green shirt driving the 116-year-old steam launch Osprey in front of the Conneticut River Museum.

From my other life, that’s me in the green shirt driving the 116-year-old steam launch Osprey in front of the Connecticut River Museum.

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