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Old 05-15-2022, 07:50 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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How big should the tank be

Im looking for tank size suggestions.

Family of 6. We are in the phx area so I tend to lean bigger when it comes to water haha.

Also grey and or black tank size. Im assuming we base that off the fresh tank but not sure how to size it.

I tried search toold but cant seem to find anything useful

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Old 05-15-2022, 09:56 PM   #2
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How long do you want to off-grid? I'm going 150 gallon fresh, 60 gallon gray, and 30gallon black. The official answer is that grey and black added together should equal your fresh tank capacity or something, but I plan to drop when needed and have an outdoor shower. It's kind of up to you....
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Old 05-16-2022, 01:40 PM   #3
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One important consideration:
Water at room temperature weighs about 8.3 lbs. 100 gallons of water = 830 lbs. Water moves when driving. It will be the heaviest object in your bus. A family of six will likely use that 100 gallons in two days or less. If you stay in a place with potable water available and septic/sewer hookup, this isn't a problem.


Mount both of your water tanks (three if using grey water) securely.
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Old 05-16-2022, 05:07 PM   #4
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There are TWO of us in a 40' rig and we're planning 200 fresh, 80+ black
40 or 50 gray, and 35 reclaimed.
Reclaimed (screen out big stuff, 2 or 3 paper filters, RO filter, UV sterilzation) will feed shower, washing machine, and toilet flushing.


We don't think we have enough.
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Old 05-16-2022, 05:14 PM   #5
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i have a 48 gallon fresh tank and, 48 gallon black tank.

i bought 2 of the 48 gallon tanks for fresh water, but frankly, the 2nd tank takes up too much room.

48g/48g last me solo - 2weeks, with a partner, 1 week.
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Old 05-16-2022, 05:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fo4imtippin View Post
How long do you want to off-grid? I'm going 150 gallon fresh, 60 gallon gray, and 30gallon black. The official answer is that grey and black added together should equal your fresh tank capacity or something, but I plan to drop when needed and have an outdoor shower. It's kind of up to you....
Thats kind of what I figured. This will mostly be a camping rig with one longer cross country trip a year. Again being in a desert id love 200 fresh but that also feels overkill haha.
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Old 05-16-2022, 05:20 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flattracker View Post
One important consideration:
Water at room temperature weighs about 8.3 lbs. 100 gallons of water = 830 lbs. Water moves when driving. It will be the heaviest object in your bus. A family of six will likely use that 100 gallons in two days or less. If you stay in a place with potable water available and septic/sewer hookup, this isn't a problem.


Mount both of your water tanks (three if using grey water) securely.
That seems like a ton of water use per person. Especially for a non flush toilet. However I do get the point. I see a lot of videos with all thread and unistrut that are intriguing but I feel like they need more support.
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Old 05-16-2022, 05:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HamSkoolie View Post
There are TWO of us in a 40' rig and we're planning 200 fresh, 80+ black
40 or 50 gray, and 35 reclaimed.
Reclaimed (screen out big stuff, 2 or 3 paper filters, RO filter, UV sterilzation) will feed shower, washing machine, and toilet flushing.


We don't think we have enough.
Id love to see that setup. As Ive said we are in a desert and our water sources are drying up but it is probably over complicated for our needs yet.
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Old 05-16-2022, 05:42 PM   #9
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what fixtures do you plan on using?
you can put water savers in all fixtures.
a toilet at 1.3gpm
a kitchen and or bath faucet at 1.0
a shower can go lower but wont rinse the shampoo out of a ladies hair very good or efficiently.
for shower a hand sprayer where you get wet lather up and rinse of is probably the way to go to save water.
for capacities you need to add all of that up and see where you are at with the time durations of filling the sink to wash dishes and rinse dishes and each person doing there thing in the morning.
i grew up camping out of a back pack so my familys routine on a trip is different than most.
a bus is our only upgrade and more of a mobile base to make longer excursions shorter.
outdoor showers still draw fresh but nothing in the gray.
if filtered you might want to fill your canteens for a hike.
for my big bus i have 200 fresh a 80 gallon grey and a 100 gallon black but that was from a winnebago setup.
my idea with a black tank is the solids are going to take up some of that room but you need the liquid in there to move the solids upon drainage.
for grey tank you dont get as much solids but hair or food from not scraping plates or paper plates for the fire pit.
with an outdoor shower i would want the extra capacity but with out one i would think the fresh tank should be less that the total of both tanks and calculated solid accumulation for your build i would want a little left but not overflow the tanks from being over full .
but they do make tank monitoring systems as long as the tanks are built with the connections for them.
and i might be to old school where they have a wireless one now
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Old 05-16-2022, 05:53 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Desertsparky View Post
Id love to see that setup. As Ive said we are in a desert and our water sources are drying up but it is probably over complicated for our needs yet.

Guessing you mean the reclamation set up. It's planned out and simple. Not sure how well it will work but we will at least be able to reduce some water usage be reclaiming. Basically, everything goes to the black tank except the Shower and Washing machine. So toilet, bathroom sink, and kitchen sink. This keeps out food particles, tooth paste, etc.


Washing machine and shower go into the gray tank from which a pump pulls water through a screen to remove hair, lint, etc. (washer will have lint screens to minimize lint in the tank). Then it will go through two or three filter elements to remove smaller particles, and then through an RO system.
RO systems typically send 19 parts of water down the drain for every part processed through the membrane so the RO "waste" will be fed back to the gray tank.
After RO processing, the flow goes through a UV sterilizer and into the reclaimed water tank to be drawn upon for toilet flushing, showers, and washing machine.
Because there is then a reclaimed and a potable system, we will need three water pumps (fresh, potable, and the reclamation filtering system), and two on demand water heaters (potable and reclaimed systems).
A bit of extra expense but we would like to take nice, long, HOT showers rather than the typical wet, lather, rinse deal.
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Old 05-16-2022, 06:27 PM   #11
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I have a composting toilet and the system is designed for two people, four days off grid. 40 gallons fresh water, 40 gallons gray.

That's based on a bunch of Internet research, so until I take the rig out I can't say it's more than a good guess as of right now.
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Old 05-18-2022, 02:18 PM   #12
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For my eventual build, the waste tanks will have a larger capacity than the fresh tank, probably by 20 percent. So, if I had 100 gallon fresh, I'd go 120 gallon grey/black with any overflow to the grey tank heading for the black tank. The reason? I don't want to risk anything, including a fresh water pump getting stuck on and pumping its entire contents to grey/black, to result in anything backing up into the living quarters. I also don't really plan to boondock more than a few days at a time while traveling between destinations. Worse comes to worse I can always pull into a national park for a water swap.
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