It didn’t start a super toilet, but now with welded base and super macerating pump…it is amazing!

In choosing a head for INDININI one of the major deciding factors was to have an electric push button for the girls on board. Being in Turkey, the selection of electric heads was very limited. Importing was out of the question due to the previous problems already experienced. In addition to this, covid was coming into action and we wanted to procure as many boat parts as possible and store them in the container just in case things got worse and transportation was drastically affected. I was a bit surprised that the toilet cost nearly 500EUR and the electric macerator was also the same meaning that each head cost nearly 1000EUR. 2 heads make it an expensive exercise to flush the toilet. Given the cost, I thought it deserved time to write this up so others considering an RM69 toilet would also look at alternatives.

Here are some before pictures…well actually, the perfect before pictures would have been at first install, so these images show after 1 year of use (Jan 2023). Any pressure created when flushing forced fluid right out of the gasket. You might say… tighten the gasket, well the way it is designed and the type of plastic that is used, disallows the base and motor to be pressed together tight enough for a good seal. In fact, the plastic bends! I could have done work on this gasket and created a new one or come up with a better seal, but the problem goes beyond the gasket alone.

The way plastic parts on this RM69 toilet appear to be put together is by some type of glue. In the plumbing world, the PVC pipes are glued together using PVC glue which actually melts the PVC and results in something more like a weld than glue. In the case of this toilet base, the joins started seeping.

Since INDININI has 2 heads, and the fwd was not complete and never used, I took the fwd head and pump apart. A 500euro motor, never used, and ultimately broken now in my attempts to modify. In addition to that, it appears the design is glued together to encompass the impeller, therefore, resulting in a replacement vs fix should anything go wrong. Great business model, if you can get people to buy!

After 1 year, the below images are what the connection looked like between the porcelain bowl and the plastic base. The seal that RM69 uses between the two is a thin foam-type gasket. Some of the time when parked in town quays or marinas, we would take the approach of having a bucket of seawater in the shower and using this as flush water. Normally if we use fresh water to flush the toilet. With only a small leak in the thin foam gasket, or that it was just leaking through the foam, not only was there a constant smell of peeeeee, but as you can see from the images, it rusted the 304 stainless bolts.

Modified Version

The new version of the toilet involved making a new base for the bottom of the porcelain bowl in aluminium and welding it to the flat bottom plate that I had previously fixed to the boat. The connection of the bowl to the base uses the same, but cleaned bolts, and this time there is a nice thick sikaflex 290 gasket between the two. I used toothpicks between the bowl and base when initially putting the two together with sika. Once dry, remove the toothpicks and tighten the bolts.

Now instead of a ~500eur macerator, we can use 100eur more generic version. We used the momentary switch from the previous macerator. In true cruiser format, you use what you have or what you can get. In our case, being in Monastir Tunisia, I used some scrap aluminum pieces I had in the boat along with some 38mm pipe. I had to run around for a few days to come up with a solution for the 25mm to 38mm adapter but finally found some parts in brass. They cost 10x more than the plastic ones I used elsewhere but at least they work. I also found some 25mm hose at the local hardware shop. Both of these hoses are not PVC so over time the smell from the ‘stuff’ going through them will likely make its way to the outside. In time these hoses will be replaced, just as will the hose clamps which are not stainless.

The after version with welded base and generic 24v macerator