TerraLiner:12 m Globally Mobile Beach House/Class-A Crossover w 6x6 Hybrid Drivetrain

dwh,

Thanks for the reprise regarding Eco-John.

I took a second look at the product literature, and the Eco-John does seem a good deal more sophisticated than the Incinolet. For instance, the Eco-John removes the poop from immediately underneath, before incineration, and incineration takes place well behind the bowl area:


sr2.jpg sr-operation2.jpg


I hadn't realized that Eco-John is substantially different from Incinolet in this regard.

Eco-John also seems very "odor conscious" (e.g. the catalytic convertor on the chimney), and Eco-John seems wiling to custom-fabricate a toilet system suited to customer specifications. See http://ecojohn.com/ecojohn_sr.html , http://ecojohn.com/exploration_camp.html , http://ecojohn.com/download.html , http://ecojohn.com/catalog/ECOJOHN_SR_SERIES.pdf , and http://ecojohn.com/catalog/ECOJOHN-containerized-waste-combustion-system.pdf . Some of the more complicated systems that Eco-John provides combine the best of "flush-and-forget" with incineration:


Untitled 2.jpg Untitled.jpg


Eco-John even sells a water-saving vacuum-flush toilet as a component of this more complicated system (see below). So some kind of Eco-John system does seem like it might be the best solution, apart from size.

Given Eco-John's willingness to custom-manufacture, perhaps for the right price they'd be willing to design a very compact RV system that runs completely off electricity instead of diesel, and that combines "flush-and-forget" with an incinerator located underneath the toilet's floor-level, where more space might be available? The most relevant PDFs here are http://ecojohn.com/catalog/ECOJOHN_WC_SERIES.pdf and http://ecojohn.com/catalog/Mobile_Restroom_Catalog.pdf :


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Eco-John's smallest stand-alone "off-the-shelf" incinerator is the WC5, which measures 27 inches x 29 inches x 39 inches, and weighs 200 lbs. That's 12 cubic feet, or 340 liters. Sure, that's more volume than the two blackwater tanks on the Doleoni MAN-KAT pictured earlier in the thread, which sum to 260 liters -- 80 liters more:

  • Foul sewage collection tank (170 liters), 4mm stainless steel, and two discharge systems – spherical pneumatic valve and/or macerator pump
  • Foul sewage additional collection tank (90 liters), 4mm stainless steel and a spherical pneumatic valve discharge system
See http://www.doleoni.com/wp/en/man-kat-1-a1/ .

But 260 liters of water weighs 269 kg, or about 570 pounds, whereas the WC5 incinerator weighs 200 lbs. So in that sense even a non-custom Eco-John WC5 incinerator might make more sense than the two blackwater tanks that the Doleoni carries. On the other hand, granted, the Doleoni's tank capacities are on the large end of things. For instance, the Doleoni also carries the absolute maximum of 1500 liters of fuel.

By way of contrast, one of the largest 6x6 motorhomes made by UniCat has a sewage tank that's still "only" 158 liters -- see http://www.unicat.com/ua-en/info/EX70HDM-MBActros6x6.php . Another TGA-based 6x6 Unicat has a sewage tank that's 80 liters -- see http://www.unicat.net/pdf/EX70HD2M-MANTGA6x6-exposee-en.pdf . And even UniCat's monster-sized 8x8 has a sewage tank that's 100 liters, although it carries 1000 liters of fresh water -- see http://www.unicat.com/ua-en/info/MXXL24AH.php and http://www.unicat.com/pdf/UNICAT-MXXL24AH-MAN8x8-en-es.pdf .

Presumably a greywater tank would still be necessary, to recycle shower water (for instance) to flush the toilet.

In any case, this EcoJohn incinerating solution clearly won't be an option for a smaller motorhome, nor for a motorhome that is not carrying lots of fuel, or that does not have a large solar array and battery system that might provide plenty of electricity. But for a large, 6x6 hybrid expedition motorhome equipped with a C65 Capstone microturbine and a huge solar array, perhaps this begins to make sense.

There is also the consideration that simply holding sewage in a blackwater in a tank does not consume energy. Whereas incinerating sewage does.....

But again, many thanks for insisting again on Eco-John. It was well worth a second look.

All best wishes,



Biotect
 
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dwh

Tail-End Charlie
Presumably a greywater tank would still be necessary, to recycle shower water (for instance) to flush the toilet.
Yea. I think I'd go for filtering the greywater and dumping it back into the freshwater tank. That's not as yucky as it sounds, since I'd have some sort of freshwater filter anyway for drinking water, so a basic filter system for drawing water out of the tank for such things as cracking into fuel, another filter system for drawing water out of the tank for human use, and yet a third filter system for recycling grey back into white.

"Human use" would include whatever water comes into contact with a human, such as drinking, cooking and washing. I've bathed in plenty of oceans, lakes and icy mountain streams, and it's a lot of fun, but if I'm gonna build a truck, I might as well keep the local little creepies out of my eyes and other orifices. Water filters are good for thousands of gallons, so it's not like the human use filters would have to be replaced all that often. (And don't forget the UV lights in the freshwater tank to go along with the spoonful of chlorine you add when you get water locally.)

So pull the water from the tank first though the "utility use" (fuel and/or washing the truck/moto/hosing the sludge out of the grey tank/whatever) filter set, then split it and send the other line to the "whole house human use" filter set for <everything inside of the cabin> as well as probably an outdoor shower/hand washing station. Since the toilet is inside the cabin, and the Eco-John doesn't use much water, for simplicity I'd just feed it some of the human use water that is already plumbed into the cabin.



In any case, this EcoJohn incinerating solution clearly won't be an option for a smaller motorhome, nor for a motorhome that is not carrying lots of fuel, or that does not have a large solar array and battery system that might provide plenty of electricity. But for a large, 6x6 hybrid expedition motorhome equipped with a C65 Capstone microturbine and a huge solar array, perhaps this begins to make sense.

There is also the consideration that simply holding sewage in a blackwater in a tank does not consume energy. Whereas incinerating sewage does.....
I don't see electricity as much of an issue. Consider that a normal truck (with say, a diesel engine) has a big alternator already. Not that big a deal to add a second (or larger, or both) alternator if needed, and also not that big a deal to rig it to do a decent job of battery charging. So in that case, electricity is really a non-issue. Now, you might want to load-shift and only run the incinerator when the main engine is running, but that's okay - even the small Eco-John has a 3.5 gallon tank, so you could probably get by running a full incineration cycle (or two or three one after another) once every day or two.

For a hybrid with on-board power generation (say a hydrogen turbine or a small diesel), again electricity won't be a big issue. Sure, you'll consume a couple of kwh/day running the incinerator, but it's not going to be a deal breaker if you've engineered plenty of reserve capacity into the system. And you could easily consume just as much cooking breakfast.

Also consider that many solar charge controllers have a "load" connection (generally a low-voltage disconnect with a low amp rating). The Midnite Classic is designed to be used as either a solar or small wind charge controller and can control a "dump load". You don't need a dump load for solar like you do for wind, but if you've got the capability, might as well use it for load shifting. You could use the dump load ability to control a relay which only enables certain things (UV in the water tanks, toilet incinerator, pumping grey into white) AFTER the battery bank is topped off. In the case of solar, you'd possibly be using EXCESS power which would otherwise remain unharvested due to the battery bank being full.



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While we're on the subject of toilets/water/lavatories/heads/whatever, I'll add some other things to consider...

In my opinion, Euro designs tend to make the lavatory/shower too small. The theory is that you don't spend all that much time in there. And for a compact, occasional use rig, that's okay.

But...for a rig to spend a year or more living in, I want that time to be *quality* time. I want to be comfortable in the "reading room" (actually, being a lifelong library rat who "haunts the stacks", I tend to think of it as my own private carrel :D ) and I want plenty of elbow room in the shower. Not only that, I like a seat in a shower, so I can sit down and play with my tootsies. I would KILL for a Japanese style hot tub like Cap'n Cuthbert installed in his Shachagra truck.

The Eco-John looks to be nearly waterproof. Shouldn't be a big deal to take it another step and make it in fact waterproof. NICE! Now I can install a big drain pan in front of the toilet (deep as per Stephen Stewart's recommendations), and essentially add all that Eco-John space to my shower elbow room - AND I've got my place to sit and play with my tootsies.

If it has a door (it better, I don't want a curtain on the crapper in a high-zoot rig), then I can even add a steam unit, such as a Mr. Steam.

Oh yea! Talk about quality time. Stephen Stewart, somewhere in his musings, mentions something to the effect of, "grubby world travelers". I certainly know that feeling. It's *difficult* to get/feel really clean with a limited water supply. Spending a half-hour or so steaming first, THEN doing the "navy shower" procedure would make all the difference in the world. And it sure would be nice to be able to come in out of the cold, and hop in the steam bath (or vice versa if you're a northern type :D ).


Add a second heating loop off the hot-water thermal mass, with its own fan and thermostat, and you can also turn the shower into a "hot box" or "drying room" (repeat after me boys and girls, "it's not just a steam bath, it's also a sauna bath"). Now you can just stick your muddy boots and soaking wet coat in there and crank up the thermostat and in the morning, you've got nice warm and dry gear. Getting up and out in the cold when you're already cold is hard, but if you're nice and toasty, then it's easy to "love the smell of frozen wasteland in the morning".

This is also why I favor making the entry door go *through* the lavatory. That way the lavatory can serve as a "mud room". And hey, look(!), there's a nice seat to sit on and take off your muddy boots and socks and play with your frozen tootsies.

Now we're talking about multi-use, positive-sum win/win and all that.


Install the Eco-John with its back against an exterior wall, and you can have a hatch which allows all the messy bits of servicing (or rebuilding) the thing to be handled OUTSIDE the cabin. And any mess that does end up inside (water splashes in amazing ways - just ask anyone who has had to clean the bathroom where boys and men have been standing around "talking to the boss"), can be easily hosed down the drain.



Another thing to consider, again from Stephen Stewart, is that many world travelers end up dumping their black water tanks wherever they can. Often that ends up being in the "local sewage system" - i.e., a ditch by the side of the road. Well...they do say, "when in Rome", but honestly, I'd rather not if I don't have to.
 

dwh

Tail-End Charlie
And now ladies and gentlemen, I'm going to reveal a deep dark secret. Please! Don't EVER tell ANYone or EVERYone will be doing it. :)




In the U.S., we have this thing called the Americans with Disabilities Act. A.k.a., ADA. As far as I know, all hotels and motels in the U.S. have to have a few ADA rooms.

As an IT consultant, I spent a LOT of time in hotels and motels, and I've never yet seen one where all the ADA rooms were taken. So I make it a habit to always ask for an ADA room if they have one available - and of course, I tell them I'll be happy to move if they need it for someone else - I've NEVER been asked to move, because those rooms are never all taken. I have been given the fisheye a few times (you don't LOOK handicapped o_O), to which I just reply, "bad knees". (Which is TRUE dammit. What do old soldiers, old electricians and old football players all have in common? Bad Knees. (Probably old firemen too, now that I think about it.))

WHY do I always ask for an ADA room? I'm 6'4" tall, 2' wide across the shoulders, and including elbow room, 3' wide. I LOVE the SHOWERS in the ADA rooms:

https://www.google.com/search?q=han...a=X&ei=cyHxU4GPEdDZoAS424KIAg&ved=0CAoQ_AUoAw



EDIT: Take an ADA shower, wall it off and have a door on both long walls, replace the seat with the toilet, put a deep shower drain pan in the center, add a corner sink at the other end, and you've got the perfect ExPo entry/mud room/lavatory/steam bath/sauna/crapper/place for the wife to hang out making everyone else late for the party.

EDIT 2: AND, it's self cleaning every time you take a shower.
 
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Hi dwh,

Thanks for the thoughts about electricity, solar, and incineration. I hadn't thought about the issue of "excess solar", and yes, agreed, at times solar would be in excess. It's just that with everything else electric as well -- the traction motors, an induction hob, the Air-Conditioining system, the film/panel heaters as recommended by NeverEnough in the "High Altitude Heating" thread (see post #71, page 8, at http://www.expeditionportal.com/for...BEST-High-Altitude-Solution-for-Heating/page8 ), and so on -- the battery banks and whole electrical system will have to be darn big and very reliable.

Since you posted about Bladon microturbines I've done some research into automotive turbines in general, and the history of Capstone microturbines in vehicles in particular. Capstone is the big player in micro turbines, not Bladon, all the hype surrounding the Jaguar C-X75 notwithstanding. And the history of Capstone microturbines as used in vehicles is not pretty. The problem is not the microturbine per se (or rarely is), but rather, the robustness of all the other elements in the system. A number of municipalities that bought electric-hybrid transit buses fitted with Capstone turbines in the 2000's have been surprised by the "fragility" of their electrical systems.

I don't want to address all of that right now, because I will be posting at length about Capstone later in the thread. We can have that a detailed discussion about Capstone later. And please don't get me wrong: I definitely think that an "all-electric" expedition motorhome powered by a microturbine (or microturbines) is the future, for reasons that I will exhaustively enumerate anon. But reading about the not-so-pretty history of Capstone microturbines and their associated electrical power-trains in buses, has given me some pause for thought.

No doubt everything should improve dramatically as hybrid technologies become more "mainstream", and as major manufacturers that are good at power-train quality-control begin developing truck and bus solutions based on Capstone turbines. Most recently, for instance, Peterbilt, with its concept truck for Walmart -- see http://news.walmart.com/news-archive/2014/03/26/walmart-debuts-futuristic-truck and http://www.overdriveonline.com/photos-video-peterbilt-great-dane-concept-truck-for-walmart-unveiled/ :


[video=youtube;NER9X4_gtYk]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NER9X4_gtYk [/video]


That's just a "taster", to indicate just how converted to microturbines I've become. More anon, in an even longer series of posts....!



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The Ideal Bathroom for a large, 6x6, RTW (round-the-world) Expedition Motorhome


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While we're on the subject of toilets/water/lavatories/heads/whatever, I'll add some other things to consider.....

In my opinion, Euro designs tend to make the lavatory/shower too small. The theory is that you don't spend all that much time in there. And for a compact, occasional use rig, that's okay.

But...for a rig to spend a year or more living in, I want that time to be *quality* time. I want to be comfortable in the "reading room" (actually, being a lifelong library rat who "haunts the stacks", I tend to think of it as my own private carrel :D ) and I want plenty of elbow room in the shower. Not only that, I like a seat in a shower, so I can sit down and play with my tootsies. I would KILL for a Japanese style hot tub like Cap'n Cuthbert installed in his Shachagra truck.....

***************************

Oh yea! Talk about quality time. Stephen Stewart, somewhere in his musings, mentions something to the effect of, "grubby world travelers". I certainly know that feeling. It's *difficult* to get/feel really clean with a limited water supply. Spending a half-hour or so steaming first, THEN doing the "navy shower" procedure would make all the difference in the world. And it sure would be nice to be able to come in out of the cold, and hop in the steam bath (or vice versa if you're a northern type :D ).....

***************************

Add a second heating loop off the hot-water thermal mass, with its own fan and thermostat, and you can also turn the shower into a "hot box" or "drying room" (repeat after me boys and girls, "it's not just a steam bath, it's also a sauna bath"). Now you can just stick your muddy boots and soaking wet coat in there and crank up the thermostat and in the morning, you've got nice warm and dry gear. Getting up and out in the cold when you're already cold is hard, but if you're nice and toasty, then it's easy to "love the smell of frozen wasteland in the morning".

This is also why I favor making the entry door go *through* the lavatory. That way the lavatory can serve as a "mud room". And hey, look(!), there's a nice seat to sit on and take off your muddy boots and socks and play with your frozen tootsies.

Now we're talking about multi-use, positive-sum win/win and all that.

When it comes to the RV shower/bath, you are preaching to the converted. Everything that you suggested, I've already worked into my bathroom and shower-design plans for a large, 6x6 expedition motorhome. Yes, including the bathtub, and the idea of sauna + steam-bath.....:)

What follows below is a long series of posts that articulate my reflections so far on RV bathrooms in general, and the possibility of an RV bath-tub in particular. Your thoughts on this subject have, in effect, given me the perfect "excuse" to post at length on these topics. This thread, after all, has really turned into a kind of "ideal RTW expedition vehicle" discussion. Sure, the title of the thread still suggests a focus on MAN and Tatra's torsion-free frames for high-mobility military trucks. But the thread has long since morphed into a discussion of what might be the ideal technologies and accessories for a large 6x6 expedition motorhome, a motorhome designed to "go anywhere", including high-altitude, across the Tibetan plateau; and including extreme climates, i.e Siberia in winter. And a motorhome built for full-timing.

Perhaps I should change the title of the thread from:


"Fully Integrated MAN or TATRA 6x6 or 8x8 Expedition RV, w Rigid, Torsion-Free Frame"

to

"Fully Integrated MAN or TATRA 6x6 Expedition Round-the-World RV, w Rigid Frame"


8x8 was not a serious option right from the beginning. And "Torsion-Free Frame" is now simply assumed. A torsion-free frame no longer seems controversial, especially given the existence of torsion-free precedents like the Doleoni MAN-KAT. So discussion has long since moved on to topics relevant to the question of what it means for a motorhome to be truly "globally capable", truly RTW, and truly suitable for full-timing. On the other hand, there are now so many links referencing the thread's title as is (the vast majority of them my own....:)), that it's probably best to leave the title alone.

What do you think?

Turning to the topic of RV bathrooms, again, I want to thank you for pointing me in the direction of Eco-John. This offers the possibility of a system that combines (a) the aesthetic and psychological virtues of a low-water-usage, vacuum "flush-and-forget" toilet (i.e. a Sealand), with (b) the environmental virtues of incineration.

In the next few posts I will then address bathroom size, the question of shower-as-entryway, the question of water consumption by baths versus showers, Shachagra's hot-tub, and the Japanese ofuro tubs that inspired it. After that, I will turn to a long discussion of the the contemporary market for Walk-In bathtubs. All of this will be building up to an "SOR" (statement of requirements) for a combined bath/shower enclosure specifically designed to suit the needs of the RV market. It seems (at least to me) that there might be a ready market for a dedicated "RV bathtub/shower" design, just as long as the this bathtub/shower does not have a "footprint" in terms of square-footage much larger than some of the larger RV showers.

At first this might seem impossible or non-sensical, because bath-tubs tend to be horizontal, whereas showers are vertical. But once the assumption that a bathtub must be horizontal is questioned, all sorts of design possibilities begin to open up.



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1. Bathroom Size


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First, bathroom size. Although I am 6' 2" and not 6' 4", even still, I agree with you that "Euro-proportions" often seem inadequate. And remember, I live in Europe.

When I lived in Italy, for instance, it was virtually impossible to find clothes big enough for a decent price, because Italian guys are mostly short. The Italian definition of XXL is a complete joke. Italian friends who are also tall introduced me to a number of shops in Milan that cater specifically to big guys, and what do you think they sell? They sell XXL - XXXXXL shirts imported from the United States, by designers like Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, etc. If you visit Italy and you come across a big Italian guy, chances are good that he is not wearing a stitch of clothing designed or made in Italy. All of his clothing is probably American-designed and imported from the same. The same is true even in England, where I shop either at a specialty chain for big guys called "High and Mighty" (see http://www.highandmighty.co.uk ), or I shop at Marks and Spencers, where I can special-order clothing in larger sizes. Another friend who lives in Lugano, Switzerland, and who is 6' 4" like you, simply orders his clothes direct from American mail-order companies like Land's End, J Crew, Timberland, Brooks Brothers, etc.

In Germany, on the other hand, it's much easier to find well-designed clothing in larger sizes, because German guys, like American guys, are big. And German-designed motorhomes also tend to proportion with big German and Scandinavian guys in mind.

Even still, I completely agree that bathrooms in expedition motorhomes tend to be undersized, and not just the shower area. That's why it's important to design a bathroom to take advantage of corridor space, as per the bathroom in the Concorde motorhome that I discussed briefly in post #148, on page 15, at http://www.expeditionportal.com/for...pedition-RV-w-Rigid-Torsion-Free-Frame/page15 . I've yet to see an expedition motorhome whose camper includes with this basic, really quite elementary design feature.


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2. Shower as Entry-Way


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It's also surprising that not more expedition motorhomes have bathrooms doing "double-duty' as entryways, as you suggest, because from a certain angle, it makes great sense.

If you look through UniCat designs, only a few of their very smallest vehicles have this feature -- see http://www.unicat.com/en/pics/EX37-IvecoDaily4x4-2.php , http://www.unicat.com/en/pics/BL8FO-2.php , and http://www.unicat.com/en/pics/EX41KD-MANM4x4CC-2.php :


EX37-IvecoDaily4x4.a20-560.jpg EX37-IvecoDaily4x4.i16-560.jpg
EX37-IvecoDaily4x4.i17-560.jpg EX37-IvecoDaily4x4.i14-560.jpg EX37-IvecoDaily4x4.i15-560.jpg
EX37-IvecoDaily4x4.i13-560.jpg EX37-IvecoDaily4x4.i12-560.jpg


And here are some more pictures of a shower doing double-duty as entryway, in this case, a very "funky" Iveco conversion by a Portuguese architect. It has its own build-thread right here on ExPo -- see http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/41197-IVECO-40-10-4x4-(Project-M-A-D) , http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/41197-IVECO-40-10-4x4-(Project-M-A-D)/page4 , http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/41197-IVECO-40-10-4x4-(Project-M-A-D)/page5 , https://plus.google.com/+JoãoPedroMiguel_Shapebusters/posts/bG6Q5yZxUSJ , and https://plus.google.com/photos/+JoãoPedroMiguel_Shapebusters/albums/5649362857132315537 :


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The complete "Veky" self-build is worth checking out, because he explores a number of innovative and visually interesting design solutions.


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3. Why not Shower as Entry-Way: Hygiene


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I strongly suspect, however, that larger motorhomes do not combine shower and entryway for (a) hygienic reasons, and (b) access reasons.

When you shower with bare feet in an entryway that's well-trodden by boots and shoes, who knows what your bare feet might pick up? Sure, you can lay down a special shower-pan for bare-foot showering, and remove it when you're done:


back_sub26.jpg product_back_55.jpg product_back_58.jpg
product_back_61.jpg product_back_62.jpg


"Flora", an Italian company, makes some really beautiful wooden shower pans -- see http://www.florastyle.it/listaProdotti_eng.asp?idS=26&idC=1 .

But as you suggested in your post, water can splash around in interesting ways. So one probably wants to keep one's bare feet as far away from outside muck as possible. In First World countries located in temperate climates, outside dirt is perhaps not too worrisome. But who knows what kinds of bacteria and parasites outside dirt might contain in Third World countries, especially a country like India, where hundreds of millions of people still practice "open defecation" -- see http://www.economist.com/news/asia/...es-not-just-building-lavatories-also-changing and http://www.dw.de/why-india-needs-hi...lion-people-defecating-in-the-open/a-17732890 .

As a survivor of 3 years of chronic diarrhea, courtesy of giardia caught by way of a banana lassi milkshake in Kathmandu (yes, very stupid, but I was young and adventurous.....), designing to keep Third-World microbes at bay is personally very important for me. Mind you, the giardia had ignited an auto-immune response that was eventually diagnosed as Crohn's disease, hence 3 years on the throne. "Eventually diagnosed", in the sense that I visited no less than three specialized hospitals and/or clinics for tropical diseases in three different countries (London, UCSF, Toronto), and underwent two barium enemas and two full-blown colonoscopies. One world-famous specialist in Toronto, who is a really nice guy and otherwise very competent, mis-diagnosed and prescribed Metamucil to firm up bowel movements: the exact opposite of what should be prescribed for Crohn's. At the time he was the president of the American Society for Tropical Medicine.

I was lucky: Because I was so bloody-minded and persistent, they detected the Crohn's comparatively early, when I had only about 30 cm of fistulas. Took plenty of Salosulfazine (an anti-inflammatory), and years later, not a trace of Crohn's, as diagnosed by a third barium enema + colonoscopy.....

So I know whereof I speak, and have developed a very healthy respect for Third-World bacteria and waterborne diseases.


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4. Entry-way as Mop-Sink


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But even still, even if not as a primary shower, there's still something to be said for having the entryway equipped as a secondary shower space in which one might wash off shows or boots before entering the motorhome. So that mud doesn't go flying everywhere, the entryway might even have a "flip-up" lid, underneath which one would find a large, flat-bottomed "mop sink":


View attachment advance-tabco-9-op-40-df-25-x-21-x-16-floor-mounted-mop-sink-with-notched-front.jpg 012-d-104-2-400.jpg k-299_1.jpg



See for instance http://www.webstaurantstore.com/adv...d-mop-sink-with-notched-front/1099OP48DF.html , http://www.webstaurantstore.com/adv...t-mop-sink-16-x-20-x-12-bowl/1099OPC84DL.html , http://www.advancetabco.com/mopsinks_main.asp?title=Mop and Service Sinks , http://www.advancetabco.com/mopsinks_details.asp?title=Floor Style Mop Sinks&prodis=SERVICEMOP_FLOOR , http://www.advancetabco.com/search_results.asp?search=mop+sink&x=-1030&y=-60 , http://www.kclcutsheets.com/PDF/AD/service_mopsinks.pdf , , http://www.webstaurantstore.com/eag...0-x-12-floor-mounted-mop-sink/575F282012.html , and http://www.eaglegrp.com/ProductDisp...delNumber=F2820-12&numMajCatId=3&SubCatID=226 .

These mop-sinks can get quite large, for instance, Advance Tabco makes one 24 in x 48 in x 12 inches (high water level; 16 inches high overall), and another one that's 33 in x 25 in x 16 in with a notched front, pictured above. Furthermore, both Eagle Group and Advance Tabco are happy to custom-fabricate to order.

In any case, the mop-sink should be large enough to stand in when entering the vehicle and cleaning off muddy boots. But when one doesn't want to use it, the lid comes down, and it looks like just an ordinary step, and/or an extension of the camper floor. Here I was thinking of the "flip up lid" that UniCat fitted to the entry-way stairwell of one of its vehicles, presumably so as to maximize camper-floor interior standing space -- see http://www.unicat.com/en/pics/EX63HDSC-MANTGA6x6-2.php :


EX63HDSC-MANTGA6x6.i22-560.jpg EX63HDSC-MANTGA6x6.i21-560.jpg


This sort of mop-sink could also do double-duty as, well, a mop-sink: to make filling and emptying pails for mopping the floor of the motorhome that much easier, here assuming that the floor of an expedition motorhome is not carpet.....:).


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5. Why not Entry-Way as Shower or Mop-Sink: Access



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Now either way, Entry-Way as Shower, or Entry-Way as Mop-Sink, there's an additional spatial conundrum. If the camper floor sits at about 1.35 or 1.4 meters above grade, as camper floors tend to do in the larger 6x6 vehicles, i.e. those mounted on large truck-frames that have Michelin 16.000 R 20 XZL off-road tires, then gaining access from outside will entail climbing either a long ladder or long set of scissor-steps.

This might be another reason why larger expedition motorhomes do not have showers-as-entryways: because they need to devote entry-way space to additional riser steps. Otherwise, outside the vehicle, they would need scissor-steps with 5 or 6 risers, instead of just two or three:

11c268_036_0.jpg zetros-08.jpg zetros-22.jpg


For extensive discussion of this particular vehicle, see posts # 72 - 76 at http://www.expeditionportal.com/for...BEST-High-Altitude-Solution-for-Heating/page8 (standard ExPo pagination). This is a fairly standard access solution in the world of large expedition motorhomes.

Whereas in UniCat vehicles that do not have internal riser steps, the ladder or the scissor-steps required outside can get quite long. See http://www.unicat.com/en/info/MD45-UnimogU1550L37.php , http://www.unicat.net/pdf/MD45-UnimogU1550L37-exposee-de.pdf , http://www.unicat.com/en/info/MD48-MANLE18280CC.php , http://www.unicat.com/en/pics/MD54pickupcomfort-InternationalMXTCC-2.php , http://www.unicat.com/en/pics/EX44-MANM4x4-sh-2.php , and http://www.unicat.com/en/info/EX37-IvecoDaily4x4.php :


EX37-IvecoDaily4x4.a20-560.jpg EX37-IvecoDaily4x4.a21-560.jpg EX44-MANM4x4.09d-560.jpg
MD45-UnimogU1550L37.2-560.jpg MD54pickupcomfort-InternationalMXTCC.ta02-560.jpg MD48-MANLE18.280Doka-560.jpg


In short, I am very sympathetic to your thoughts about a shower combined with entry-way. And my respect for Third-World microbes is now so profound, that I may forego the design-elegance of "embedded" entry-way steps, as per the first three images of a Zetros conversion above, in favor of a long flight of scissor-steps instead, at the end of which one meets an embedded mop-sink that insists that one clean one's boots.

But for me, that mop-sink would not also serve as a bare-foot shower. Instead, I've been designing for a separate bath/shower area, if only because I also want to incorporate a Walk-In bathtub......


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6. Baths versus Showers


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But...for a rig to spend a year or more living in, I want that time to be *quality* time. I want to be comfortable in the "reading room" (actually, being a lifelong library rat who "haunts the stacks", I tend to think of it as my own private carrel :D ) and I want plenty of elbow room in the shower. Not only that, I like a seat in a shower, so I can sit down and play with my tootsies. I would KILL for a Japanese style hot tub like Cap'n Cuthbert installed in his Shachagra truck.

Oh yea! Talk about quality time. Stephen Stewart, somewhere in his musings, mentions something to the effect of, "grubby world travelers"....

Regarding the desirability of having a bathtub in an expedition motorhome, you and I are very much on the same page.

The most extreme example I've yet come across yet is the "spa" bath that Peter Thompson installed in Mañana, at his wife's insistence -- see posts #206 and #212 on pages 21 and 22 in this thread, at http://www.expeditionportal.com/for...pedition-RV-w-Rigid-Torsion-Free-Frame/page21 and http://www.expeditionportal.com/for...pedition-RV-w-Rigid-Torsion-Free-Frame/page22 . Mr. Thompson wrote to me that they didn't actually use the bathtub that much in the Australian outback, because it consumed so much water. The tub was really only usable when hooked up to an external water supply at a campsite.

On the other hand, if you do the math, taking a bath does not necessarily consume that much more water than a shower. Indeed, some studies suggest that modern "Power Showers" actually consume more water and electricity than a bath -- see http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/...ower-bath-save-water-It-just-money-drain.html , http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/en...e-as-much-water-and-electricity-as-baths.html , and http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...-worse-environment-baths-twice-expensive.html . Sure, this line of reasoning can be taken too far, and can lead to misconceptions. It is still true that a "regular" sort of shower consumes less water than a "typical" sort of bath -- see http://www.waterwise.org.uk/news.php/11/showers-vs.-baths-facts-figures-and-misconceptions and http://www.waterwise.org.uk/data/Documents/Press_Releases/24_11_showersvsbaths.pdf . A bath typically consumers about 80 liters, whereas a quick, 4-minute shower can consume as little as 32 liters, and more typically about 40 liters.

But as egn pointed out earlier in the thread, having an aerated shower head does not necessarily solve matters, at least not for girls and women with long hair, because they still need a certain volume of water to completely rinse their hair of shampoo. So when using an aerated shower-head girls and women simply take longer, and consume the same quantity of water as before. So instead, in "Blue Thunder", egn's 6x6 motorhome, he installed a normal shower-head, but with a programmable thermostat that virtually guarantees that when the water first exits the shower-head, it's exactly the right temperature. No fussing with the mixer-tap and wasting water to get the temperature just right before getting down to business.

So if the average shower consumes about 40 liters, then two showers are equivalent to one bath. But one can soak in a bath for hours on end, and one cannot soak in a "normal" shower (as opposed to a "steam shower"....:)).


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7. Soaking in a Bathtub with a Reading/Writing Caddy


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Like you, dwh, I am fond of reading in the bathroom. Here I'd want to take a page out of Thomas Jefferson's book, and have a bathtub that includes a reading/writing caddy, as per Jefferson's bath at Monticello:


reading-book-bathtub.jpg 3348913382999p copy.jpg 24110140460345p__1 copy.jpg
35298841708507p copy.jpg 1304912143109p copy.jpg 19539-alt.jpg
ArchitectureArtDesigns-3162.jpg w-Aquala-Bath-Caddy-359009.jpg 7ef3c426139f5843f7d0d5c624a20574.jpg


Here's an invention by an 8 year-old, to keep books dry:


SHRq4px2.jpg



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202254-z1.jpg 202254-z2.jpg Victoria_Albert_Tombolo.jpg
metal-bathtub-tray.jpg Bath-caddy-main.jpg tubcaddy2.jpg


For these various bathtub reading/writing caddies, see http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/sto...plated-caddy/1012143109?Keyword=bathtub+caddy , http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/sto...nickel-caddy/1013382999?Keyword=bathtub+caddy , http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/sto...th-tub-caddy/1040460345?Keyword=bathtub+caddy , http://www.sharperimage.com/si/view...ub-Caddy/202254?question=Bamboo Bathtub Caddy , http://www.comforthouse.com/bathtubcaddy.html , http://www.homewetbar.com/sweet-serenity-bathtub-caddy-p-2900.html , http://thehomesteadsurvival.com/bathtub-caddy-tray-build/ , http://vandabaths.com/en/europe/collections/type/accessories/ , http://vandabaths.com/en/europe/product/tombolo-8/ , http://vandabaths.com/en/europe/product/tombolo-10/ , http://www.examiner.com/article/do-you-read-the-bathtub , http://boingboing.net/2013/05/03/8-year-olds-invention-for-ke.html , http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/quick-tip-for-easier-bathtub-reading-189421 , http://www.theguardian.com/books/booksblog/2008/mar/25/bathtimereading , http://www.barnesandnoble.com/blog/how-to-read-in-the-tub/ , and http://www.exploredreamdiscoverblog.com/2011/01/bathtub-beauty.html .

Here are some contemporary ideas for reading an iPad in the tub, not all of them good ones....:)


splashtrak copy.jpg 6f5ed7bb3f517569a4699307be83d922_large.jpg Ipad-bath-condom3.jpg
photo.jpg


See http://www.iphoneness.com/ipad-accessories/use-ipad-in-shower-5-bathroom-accessories/ , http://www.splashrak.com , http://www.blog.vintagetub.com/2013/01/ipad-tablet-tub-caddy.html , http://www.onemanandhisblog.com/archives/2014/01/want_to_read_your_ipad_in_the_bath.html , and http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00BSE0JT4...tiveASIN=B00BSE0JT4&adid=1XDQ84FH7ZK3Y1MANFXT .



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8. The Shachagra Precedent


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Now if being able to soak in a tub for a few hours when ample water is available seems a worthwhile objective, then clearly Doug Cuthbert's Shachagra has the right idea: go vertical, with a Japanese style plunge-bath, called a "furo" or "ofuro" -- see http://www.centennialyachts.com/shachagra , http://www.roadschoolodyssey.com/design-considerations.html , http://www.expeditionportal.com/for...s-Europe-and-Turkey-International-7500/page18 , and http://www.examiner.com/article/the-world-s-best-overland-expedition-vehicles . The Shachagra is undoubtedly one of the most innovative examples of RV interior design yet created, not least because of its "hatch-access" lower-deck sleeping cabins. So the Shachagra's Japanese-style hot-tub seems worth pondering a bit.

The following are quotes that address Shachagra's hot-tub and heating system:


Bath: Showers use lots of water. Five showers a day would exhaust even a 300 gallon tank, tethering us to a campground water supply. Bath water, if kept clean and filtered, can be used again and again. The Japanese know how to bathe, and onboard Shachagra we will bathe like the Japanese, in a small, but deep tub (2 ft, 70 gal) . When we lived in Japan, our deep soaking tub was not for cleaning, just soaking. The cleaning takes place outside the tub sitting on a small stool. Japanese baths are generally much hotter than US hot tubs (110 Deg F).

We wanted to carry 400 gallons of water (we got 380). Finding water may prove to be the greatest challenge in some areas of our travels, and 400 gallons would last 14 days if we conserve. After pricing custom tanks we decided to build our own to be fitted just above the chassis rails. Two 90 gallon reserve tanks feed into a 180 gallon main. Hot water is provided by a 20 gallon Isotemp stainless steel heater with dual coils, one gains heat from the Diesel boiler, the second provides heat to the ofuro, or soaking tub.
We lived in Japan three years, where my son was born, and I developed my love for soaking in a hot bath. It is not only a very calming luxury, it is a great way to save water. The tub isn't for cleaning, that's accomplished before you get in, sitting on a stool next to the tub. This gets you clean and ready for the very hot water of the tub (US tubs are normally 104 Deg, ours is at 110.) The water in the tub is retained, reused and only replaced when we fill the water tanks. It is designed to have a thermostat turn on the circulation pump when the temp drops below 105 Deg, keeping it hot all the time, when I finally install it, for now it works great manually. (not yet installed, manual now.)

We use the 180 gallons of water directly under the galley floor in the heart of the RV as a &#8220;heat sink&#8221; like a radiant heat floor, to store heat from the boiler for slow release on cold winter mornings. The tub water, before returning to the boiler dumps its remaining heat as it runs through the main water tank, which is well insulated.

I am on the computer more and thought I could give a better describe the heating system we used on the trip.


9387835_orig.jpg


The system is much less complicated than the picture makes it look.

At its heart is an Isotemp Stainless steel 20 gallon Marine water heater with dual heating coils. The water is heated from either an internal 110V element or a Webasto diesel coolant heater. The top coil depicted in the picture provides heat to the water heater and I could have also used the trucks coolant system if I had gotten around to making the connections. Someday&#8230;..

The water heater gets domestic water from a 180-gallon main tank. There are two additional 90-gallon tanks that gravity feed the main when opened. The domestic water system is fairly standard, a Shurflo &#8220;Smart Sensor&#8221; water and two cartridge filters.
The second coil in the water tank heats the soaking tub and when selected, the entire RV. Water grabs heat while passing through the water heater and heads directly to the hot tub. That water is really hot. The tub water, 104-110 degrees is then pulled through another cartridge filter by a much smaller pump and pushed through pex tubing laid in the bottom of the main water tank. Tank water absorbs heat, bringing the 104 degree water down to about 80 degrees. The water tanks are well insulated on the lower 5 sides but releases radiant heat into the cabin for a good long time. This arrangement allows me to run the boiler for short periods of time (evening bath time), which will heat the RV throughout a cold night in the Scottish Highlands. We also have a Dickinson diesel fireplace in the dinette that I would light in the mornings when needed. We loved the warmth, both physically and visually that little fireplace gave us. If I didn't need to heat the entire RV I would open one valve, close another, and the water went directly from the hot tub back to the water heater.

I loved sitting in the tub, piping hot water flowing over my right leg as I listened to the soft click of the boiler below the floor providing me that heat. I consumed many glasses of wine in the many hours I spent soaking in that tub.

The plumbing and heating systems are so interconnected that they really need to be described as one system.

Here are two videos, that include some footage of the Shachagra hot-tub:


[video=youtube;5xraFS55ocI]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5xraFS55ocI [/video]


And here are a few images the Shachagra hot-tub :

Untitled-1.jpg Untitled.jpg DSC09309.jpg


It's very interesting that in these descriptions Doug Cuthbert rejects "conventional wisdom", and suggests that showers actually use more water than baths, not less. Of course, it all depends on what you mean by a "bath". And so too, it depends on what you mean by "getting clean" before taking a plunge in a hot-tub.

In Japan, "getting clean" often means sitting on a stool using a shower head attached to a flexible hose, thereby nullifying the potential water-saving properties of an ofuro. Of course, before the advent of plumbing and showers, the Japanese would merely clean and rinse themselves sitting on a stool with a pail of water. And in traditional Japanese inns (ryokan), communal bath houses (sento), and hot springs (onsen), this is still common practice. One suspects that this is what the Cuthberts might have done, although this is never made completely clear. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Furo , http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sent&#333; , http://www.sentoguide.info , http://kyotobaths.info , http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Onsen , http://japan-onsen.com , http://www.secret-japan.com/onsen/ , http://www.onsenjapan.net , http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ryokan_(Japanese_inn) , http://www.japaneseguesthouses.com , http://www.japaneseguesthouses.com/japanese-bathing-etiquette/ , http://www.onsenjapan.net/onsenbasics.php , http://web.archive.org/web/20050210100957/http://www.tjf.or.jp/eng/ge/ge04ofuro.htm , http://www.tb-kumano.jp/en/onsen/how-to-take-a-japanese-bath/ , and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Customs_and_etiquette_of_Japan#Bathing .

Here are two videos that give a good idea of what a traditional Japanese ofuro constructed out of expensive "Hinoki" Cypress wood is like -- see http://www.bartokdesign.com/japan/ and http://www.bartokdesign.com/japan/3hottub_manufacture/ :


[video=youtube;824mw24y-IM]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=824mw24y-IM [/video] [video=youtube;Vlsi8DbXzrs]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vlsi8DbXzrs [/video]


Now Doug Cuthbert does describe his family as taking "Navy Showers", i.e. two-minute showers where one turns off the water while soaping -- see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Navy_shower . So the Shachagra does have a shower, in addition to its ofuro. It seems that a shower-head is visible in the first image of the Shachagra hot-tub above, a still taken from the second Shachagra video.

It's interesting, however, that Doug Cuthbert's preferred cleaning methodology encountered some resistance, from his eldest daughter in particular, who was/is a runner:


We used more water than we should have, about 30 gallons a day. My oldest daughter ran and showered everyday, and I could never get her used to the "navy shower" concept. (funny she is at the Naval Academy now, good runner for them).

See post # 50, page 5, at http://www.expeditionportal.com/for...es-Europe-and-Turkey-International-7500/page5 (standard ExPo pagination).

So it's possible that a Japanese hot-tub/plunge-bath of permanently dedicated water (Shachagra's tub contains about 70 U.S. gallons, or 265 liters), will not necessarily allow a camper to save that much on daily usage. At least a brief shower with soap still has to be part of the cycle. And if one's elder daughter is athletic, a future Annapolis runner, and works up a good sweat on a daily basis, then all the best laid plans of mice and men....:)

What seems wanted, then, is a more modest-size fill-and-drain bathtub, of the kind that uses the standard 80 liters. But a bathtub that, like a Japanese ofuro, is much more "vertical" than horizontal, and hence, does not have as big a "footprint", and uses much less camper square-footage.


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9. Japanese Ofuro Baths


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At one Japanese Ryokan where I stayed, the ofuro was most vertical indeed: just a small, 2 foot x 4 foot hatch in the floor, with the tub sinking way down below that, more than 6 feet. I had to dunk my head to touch the bottom, which in an ofuro is a "no-no". But it should be emphasized that this sort of ultra-vertical ofuro was a bit of an exception. Yes, Japanese oforu are much deeper than typical western bathtubs. But most are still somewhat long and rectangular, usually about 24 - 30 inches deep, and one soaks in a more or less horizontal and/or seated position.

Even the elliptical, cylindrical, and cubic formats are designed for sitting or crouching, not standing. See http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/5285000/list/10-japanese-soaking-tubs-for-bathing-bliss , http://somethingsage.blogspot.com/2013/09/japanese-soaking-bathtubs.html , http://interldecor.blogspot.com/2013/07/Japanese-bathroom-styles-designs-ideas.html#.U_MCEHmSf6m , http://www.greatinteriordesign.com/...ese-bath-tubs-from-ofuros-neptune-collection/ , http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/10-luxurious-soaking-tubs-110218?img_idx=9 , http://www.diamondspas.com/kitchen-bath-collection/custom-baths/japanese-soaking-tubs-and-baths/ , http://interactivepdf.uniflip.com/2/33201/263353/pub/ , http://interactivepdf.uniflip.com/2/33201/263353/pub/document.pdf , http://www.cabuchon.com/deep-soaking-bath-tubs/ , http://www.cedartubs.com/ofuro.html , http://www.signaturehardware.com/catalogsearch/result/?q=39"+Velletri+Copper+Japanese+Style+Soaking+Tub , http://thetoptier.net/index.php/hom...-deep-soaking-tubs-add-luxury-to-any-bathroom , http://defogitall.com/japanese-soak...ing-tub-with-stone-and-wood-decoration-ideas/ , and http://www.trendhunter.com/trends/hinoki-cypress-bathtubs-by-ryu-kosaka :


japanese-bathtub-14.jpg 2844.23248.jpg Ons_Hin_48_installed__71223.1407367732.1280.1280.jpg
1205877398Ofuro in the Winter.jpg japanese-soaking-tub-ofuro-tubs-specifications-wooden-ofuros-37393.jpg 1205877274chofu overlooking lake.jpg



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Here are some more images of ofuro Japanese soaking tubs, the more vertical ones by contemporary designers who re-interpreted the concept in metal:


japanese-bathtub-wooden-5.jpg japanese-soaking-tub-custom-japanese-style-soaking-tub-with-52385.jpg japanese-soaking-tub-japanesestyle-soaking-tubs-catch-on-in-us-bathroom-decor-81568.jpg
20714-l.jpg 19034-l.jpg 12016-l.jpg
361783-l-round-slipper-air-bath-tub-seat-copper.jpg 7220198408_0f06269200.jpg 361784-l-heart-air-bath-tub-antique-copper.jpg
japanese-soaking-tub-71207.jpg



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website-Breckenridge-Bath-001.jpg website-ss-jap-lake.jpg website-ss-japanese-bath-Haefner_edit.jpg
website-FB-copper-japanese-bath.jpg website-ss-jap-oval-bath.jpg website-santa-fe-lighted.jpg


All of these ofuro are certainly more "vertical" than the standard 80-liter lay-down bath. But perhaps still not vertical enough? It's the "wasted volume" above a more horizontal type of of bath that's the biggest concern in a motorhome, where every cubic meter matters. As such, one wants the bathtub's foot-print to be as small as possible.


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10. Walk-In Vertical Ofuro Tub, with Shower


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From the point of water-usage, one also wants a tub deep enough that will allow filling it up with water to one's chest in a sitting position; and one wants the seat to be a moulded, integrated part of the tub wall, so that there is no "wasted volume" of water under the seat. Overall, one wants a shape that is much narrower at the bottom than the top, and some orfuro are constructed like this:


japanese-soaking-tub-bathroom-ultra-modern-look-of-japanese-soaking-tubs-custom-82588.jpg


Furthermore, this more "vertical" sort of bathtub/hot-tub should also do double-duty as a shower, because most RVs really don't have space for both an "ofuro", as well as a separate shower beside it, as depicted in many of the images above.

This is where the American innovation known as the "Walk-In bathtub" comes into play. More on this below. For now, suffice it to say, what I've just described would be one of the more "vertical" Walk-In bathtubs, the kind integrated with a shower enclosure:



walk-in-bath-tub-2951.jpg ....... dimensions-2951-bathtub.jpg

[video=youtube;sGxwzCw7O10]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sGxwzCw7O10 [/video]


See http://www.arcticspas.co.nz/our-products/walk-in-baths/ and http://www.arcticspasfactoryoutlet.com/our-products/walk-in-baths/walk-in-bath-tub-2951/ . And for more examples of already existing, integrated Walk-In baths/showers that have similar designs, see http://www.azurahomedesign.com/fr/b...-baignoire-à-porte-balnéo-chora-10078cm-.html , http://www.azurahomedesign.com/fr/b...1-combiné-baignoire-à-porte-balnéo-rolas.html .... But even the footprint of this side-entry bathtub/shower is still a bit too broad for an RV. What's really wanted is a design variation of the "front-entry" models of Walk-In tubs, discussed further below.

A typical usage cycle in such a combination shower/tub could run something like this:

  1. One takes a quick "Navy shower" with soap
  2. One fills up the tub with 80 liters of water, and soaks
  3. One places a lid on the filled tub, to contain the water, as per the lid on the Shachagra hot-tub. A heating element keeps the water in the tub warm, as is standard for hot-tubs.
  4. Next time, one enters the tub directly from above, as per an ofuro or the Shachagra hot-tub, instead of from the front, as per a Walk-In tub. One takes a regular bath, or two, in the same water, using soap etc. (depending on one's sensibilities)
  5. One drains the bath
  6. The combination shower/tub is ready for another shower, or a bath
Of course, one could also take baths completely draining the water each time. Or one could take just showers. But with sort of configuration, having a bathing an RV is at least an option. Sure, this combination shower/tub would not be big enough for two to bathe, unlike the Shachagra's orfuro hot tub, whose 265 liter water capacity seems large enough to accommodate two people simultaneously. But a fill-and-drain bathtub for two people simply isn't on the cards for an expedition motorhome, no matter how large the vehicle.

In terms of overall design, what's needed is an enclosure that is funnel-shaped, narrow on the bottom and widening towards the top:


RSVP-Endurance-18-8-929x1024.jpg

The surface where one's feet are standing when taking a shower does not have to be very large. And the internal width only needs to widen at hip-height (for women), and at shoulder-height (for both men and women).

So it seems in principle possible to design and construct a very vertical kind of Walk-In shower/tub, such that it uses 80 liters of water for a bath, or less. I've not yet seen anything quite it on the market, and so this is one of my "ongoing" parallel design projects. The above image from Arctic Spas comes closest to what I have in mind. But it is still worlds removed from the sort of integrated shower/vertical-bath combination that I've been imagining and sketching.

It seems that RV owners might welcome just this sort of very "vertical" shower/tub:

  • a combination bath/shower enclosure that makes baths possible when water is abundant and available at campsites
  • but that takes up only slightly more space than a shower, when water is scarce
The next few posts explore some of the other design precedents in the world of Walk-In tubs.


(P.S. -- I used the example of a jar of peaches and a funnel primarily to illustrate the general spatial idea. But also in homage to an earlier discussion in the thread, about preserving food by means of vacuum-sealing. See posts #166 and #170 on page 17, at http://www.expeditionportal.com/for...pedition-RV-w-Rigid-Torsion-Free-Frame/page17 , and post # 173 on page 18, at http://www.expeditionportal.com/for...pedition-RV-w-Rigid-Torsion-Free-Frame/page18 . Standard ExPo pagination.)


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11. Walk-In Tubs


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Over the last 20 years, the market for Walk-In tubs has become well-established, as seniors who want to remain in their homes seek design solutions that allow them to take baths their own, unassisted.

As near as I can tell, there are at least 20 manufacturers who make Walk-In bath-tubs. See for instance http://americantubs.com , http://americantubs.com/walk-in-tubs/love-series/love-series-3138-free-standing-soaker-walk-in-tub/ , http://americantubs.com/walk-in-tubs/sain-series/sain-series-3055-deep-soaking-walk-in-tub/ , http://www.americanstandard-us.com/...p=1&so=pricehightolow&di=0&a=(424),&t=46&r=25 , http://www.astonbath.com/walk-in-tubs/ , http://www.astonbath.com/wt623-55-x-30-walk-in-jetted-tub/ , http://banerabath.com/walk-in-bath-tubs/ , http://banerabath.com/walk-in-bath-tubs/faro/ , http://banerabath.com/walk-in-bath-tubs/porto/ ,http://www.blisstubs.com/walk-in-tub-315546.html , http://www.blisstubs.com/files/product-sheets/B305546-product-sheet.pdf , http://www.blisstubs.com/walk-in-tub-2651.html , http://www.blisstubs.com/files/product-sheets/B2651-product-sheet.pdf , http://comfortwalkintubs.com/premium-acrylic-walk-in-tubs/ , http://comfortwalkintubs.com/acrylic-walk-in-tubs/acrylic-walk-in-tubs-elite-edition/ , http://comfortwalkintubs.com/compact-walkin-tubs/ , http://www.divapor.com/varedo-walk-in-bath/walk-in-bath.php , http://ellasbubbles.com/ella-brand-acrylic-walk-in-bathtubs/ , http://ellasbubbles.com/walk-in-tubs/ellas-elite-walk-in-tub/ , http://ellasbubbles.com/walk-in-tubs/ellas-deluxe-walk-in-bathtub/ , http://ellasbubbles.com/walk-in-tubs/bariatric-massage-walk-in-tub/ , http://ellasbubbles.com/outward-swing-walk-in-bathtubs/ , http://ellasbubbles.com/ella-titan-outward-swing-acrylic-walk-bathtub/ , http://ellasbubbles.com/ella-kai-outward-swing-acrylic-walk-bathtub/ , http://www.envywalkintubs.com/model.html#pagetop , http://www.envywalkintubs.com/model/envy-jetted-cove.html#pagetop , http://www.jacuzzi.com/baths/walk-in/ , http://www.jacuzzi-walk-in-tubs.com , http://www.jacuzzi.com/baths/bathtubs/finestra-bath/ , http://independenthome.com/product/the-cube-walk-in-bathtub/ , http://independenthome.com/v2/wp-content/themes/independent_home/Cube-Model-Brochure.pdf , http://independenthome.com/product/the-acrylic-deluxe-walk-in-bathtub/ , http://independenthome.com/v2/wp-content/themes/independent_home/acrylic-deluxe-brochure.pdf , http://www.us.kohler.com/us/Bathing-BubbleMassage™-Air-Baths/Elevance/brand/656453/429468.htm , http://www.us.kohler.com/us/Bathing-BubbleMassage™-Air-Baths/Elevance/brand/656453/429468.htm , http://www.meditubs.com/MeditubProductsA.aspx , http://www.meditubs.com/MeditubProductDetails.aspx?ID=1 , http://www.meditubs.com/Downloads/3238.pdf , http://www.meditubs.com/MeditubProductDetails.aspx?ID=8 , http://www.meditubs.com/Downloads/3060WCA.pdf , http://www.phoenixwhirlpools.co.uk/...-collection/walk-in-bath/comfort-walk-in-bath , http://www.premiercarebathing.com/ns/walk-in-baths/compact-walk-in-tubs/ , http://www.premiercarebathing.com/ns/walk-in-baths/easy-bathe-the-original/ , http://www.premiercarebathing.com/ns/walk-in-baths/oversize-walk-in-baths/ , http://www.premiercarebathing.com/ns/walk-in-baths/compact-walk-in-baths/cove-walk-in-bathtub/ , http://www.ranetubs.com/res , http://www.ranetubs.com/brochures/RB14 Mediterranean Brochure.pdf , http://www.sbstubs.com/products.html , http://www.safesteptub.com/walk-in-tubs/ , http://www.safesteptub.com/tub/ , http://www.sanspafivestar.com , http://sanspafivestar.com/oh5129 , and http://www.theratub.com .

And for some British, European, and Australian equivalents, both manufacturers and distributors, see for instance http://appolloassistedbathing.co.uk , http://appolloassistedbathing.co.uk/products/walk-in-baths-shower-baths/ , http://appolloassistedbathing.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/Maxi-Walk-In-Bath.pdf , http://appolloassistedbathing.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/Mini-Walk-In-Bath.pdf , http://www.azurahomedesign.com/fr/96-baignoires-à-porte- , http://www.azurahomedesign.com/fr/b...ignoire-à-porte-balnéo-astove-9580100-cm.html , http://www.azurahomedesign.com/fr/baignoires-à-porte-/1784-baignoire-à-porte-balnéo-malé-15281.html , http://www.aquability.com , http://www.aquability.com/walk-in-baths/ , http://www.aquability.com/aquabath/ , http://www.aquability.com/mini-marvel/ , http://www.bathingfreedom.co.uk/walkin_baths.html , http://www.bathingfreedom.co.uk/the_robin.html , http://www.bath-knight.co.uk/walk-in-baths/ , http://www.bath-knight.co.uk/walk-in-baths/affinity-walk-in-bath/ , http://www.bath-knight.co.uk/walk-in-baths/maestro-walk-in-bath/ , http://www.cabuchon.com/deep-soaking-bath-tubs/ , http://www.duscholux.com/eu-en/room-solutions/ , http://www.duscholux.com/eu-en/room-solutions/family/piccolo-step-in-99/shower-enclosures-17/ , http://www.duscholux.com/eu-en/room-solutions/family/step-in-pure-39/shower-enclosures-18/ , http://www.duscholux.com/eu-en/room-solutions/family/piccolo-step-in-99/acrylic-tubs-27/ , http://www.duscholux.com/eu-en/room-solutions/family/step-in-pure-39/acrylic-tubs-28/ , http://www.gainsboroughbaths.com , http://www.gainsboroughbaths.com/product/category/4/walk-in-baths , http://www.gainsboroughbaths.com/product/details/23/coniston , http://www.gainsboroughbaths.com/product/details/21/ullswater , http://www.gainsboroughbaths.com/product/details/20/windermere , http://www.gruppotres.it/ENG/home.html (go to "special tubs", and then down the menu to "Gen-X" and "Gen-Y"), http://www.kubex.co.uk , http://www.kubex.co.uk/walk-in-baths , http://www.kubex.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/documents/SOLO-Walk-in-Bath.pdf , http://www2.novellini.com/Nov12/Modelli/Serie?id=IRIS&naz=gb&lang=en , http://media.novellini.com/Nov10/pdf/gb/IRI4R.pdf , http://www.phoenixwhirlpools.co.uk/...-collection/walk-in-bath/comfort-walk-in-bath , http://www.practicalbathing.co.uk/index.php?route=common/home , http://www.practicalbathing.co.uk/walk-in-baths-range , http://www.practicalbathing.co.uk/walk-in-baths-range/the-sierra-compact , http://www.practicalbathing.co.uk/walk-in-baths-range/the-scorpio , http://www.practicalbathing.co.uk/walk-in-baths-range/the-talis , http://www.practicalbathing.co.uk/walk-in-baths-range/the-satin , http://renaissance-baths.co.uk/easy-access-baths/ , http://renaissance-baths.co.uk/portfolio_page/valens-easy-access-bath/ , http://renaissance-baths.co.uk/portfolio_page/talis-easy-access-bath-3/ , http://safebathingsolutions.com.au , http://safebathingsolutions.com.au/banksia/ , http://safebathingsolutions.com.au/grand/ , http://www.yorkshirecareequipment.com/category/bathing/walk-in-baths/ , and http://www.yorkshirecareequipment.com/mediterranean/ .

Sure, this list of links is very long, but it is by no means exhaustive. I still haven't researched all the possible manufacturers, and all possible product variations, especially European ones. For a fairly comprehensive survey of American manufacturers of Walk-In tubs, see http://walkinbathtubreview.org and http://walkinbathtubreview.org/all-reviews/ , and also see http://www.walkintubreviews.com/index.html . Don't take their rankings too seriously, but these websites provide nice lists of manufacturers to research further. There's a wide range here, from major manufacturers like Kohler and Jacuzzi, to much smaller, family-run businesses.

What interests me most from a design point of view, is the different "mechanical possibilities" of different kinds of doors, combined with different lengths and formats (i.e. more vertical, more horizontal). And here, perhaps the very best survey of the possibilities is not a website, but rather, a YouTube playlist, a playlist of animated CAD renderings courtesy of Absolute Mobility -- see https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL0C41C9DC1EE3C457 , and see http://www.absolutemobility.co.uk/mobility-products/walk-in-baths/the-luxor-full-length-walk-in-bath for the original website. Over the next few posts, in addition to pictures of various configurations, I will also post these CAD animations, because if a picture is worth a thousand words, then a moving picture is worth millions.


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12. Swing-Out Walk-In Tubs


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To begin with, Walk-In tubs basically classify into two types: "swing-out", and "swing-in". Some manufacturers extoll the virtues of one, some the other, and "Ella's Bubbles" does both.

First, swing-out:


Perfect-safe-step-walk-in-tub-cost-design.jpg laguna2.jpg 3060WCA.jpg
OW5130HRmain.jpg OW5130HRalt1.jpg OW5130HRalt2.jpg
walk-in-baths-porto copy.jpg oh5335a.jpg oh5335b.jpg
bathroom-inspiration-smart-white-acrylic-walk-in-bathtub-soaker-right-and-wooden-bath-floor-idea.jpg






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13. Swing-In Walk-In Tubs


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"Swing-in" seems to be the more marketable kind of Walk-In bathtub, although I am not sure why. Mechanically speaking, swing-in is more secure, because the pressure of the water seals the door shut. But in terms of access, the swing-out models pictured above strike me as a good deal easier to enter. In the models above, one doesn't need to scoot one's legs off to the side, out of the way of the swing-in door:


walk-in-bath-2.jpg 2.jpg Special-safe-step-walk-in-tub-cost-design.jpg
Kubex-Walk-In-Solo-Whirlpool.jpg Beautiful-safe-step-walk-in-tub-cost-design.jpg Exotic-white-design-safe-step-walk-in-tub-cost.jpg
Kubex-Walk-In-Solo-01.jpg man_in_freedom_spa.jpg View attachment man_exiting_freedom_spa.jpg walk-in-bathtub.jpg



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Amazing-safe-step-walk-in-tub-cost-design.jpg 4.jpg
aquabath03_large copy.jpg aquabath01_large copy.jpg






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14. Glass Door Swing-In Walk-In Tubs


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However, in terms of design, it does seem that the swing-in models are far more visually attractive and less "institutional" looking. Many of them will have glass doors:



1-deluxe-walk-in-tub.jpg 1.jpg dsc_0048_cropped-copy.jpg
6-floor-view-walk-in-bath.jpg DSC_01082.jpg 5-stainless_steel_door_walk_in_tub.jpg



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