Porta potty

Timster Mon, August 31, 2009 - 4:59 PM by Timster

I have never dealt with these. Looking for what features to get, helpful hints, and so on.
It will be used outdoors possibly inside a shower- potty combo tent structure. Just 2 people not more than 5 days at a time. Thanks.

Re: Porta potty

Mon, August 31, 2009 - 6:55 PM by Unsubsc...

You call any septic service and they'll drop one off you rent by the day week or month.

Re: Porta potty

Dan Tue, September 1, 2009 - 5:11 AM by

Or are you looking for the small Apx. 2'x2'x2' size ?

Cheap effective Porta potty

Dano Tue, September 1, 2009 - 10:53 AM by Dano

Ammo Can or 5 gallon plastic bucket, old toilet seat, and hefty bags... Oh and some ash from fireplace and or peat moss.

Used for Number 2 only but it works well.

For number 1... water a tree or diga small hole and use another bucket/seat setup except cut the bottom out of the bucket.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Dano Tue, September 1, 2009 - 10:55 AM by Dano

If you want to be D-lux, build a wooden box with hole that sits over the bucket, attach the seat to the box..

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Tue, September 1, 2009 - 3:35 PM by Unsubsc...

Better yet an old oil fired furnace firebox with the blower and furl supply mounted. You can ash your poo.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Richard Tue, September 1, 2009 - 3:55 PM by Richard

If perchance incineration isn't your disposal method of choice, consider ballistics ...

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Timster Tue, September 1, 2009 - 9:05 PM by Timster

>>>>> Ammo Can or 5 gallon plastic bucket, old toilet seat, and hefty bags... Oh and some ash from fireplace and or peat moss>>>>>>>>>

I had heard of this way and using granular lime to keep down odor and flies.
I reckon I'll buy one off Amazon with...
2 direction flush....
level indicators on fresh and waste tanks...
about $100.00

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Brett Sat, September 12, 2009 - 11:19 AM by Brett

I shelled out for something called a 'Luggable Loo' - it's really just a standard 5 gal bucket with a seat (rim) and a lid. It holds all the supplies - TP, heavy-duty trash bags, and kitty litter. Haven't had a chance to use it yet, but the seat & bucket seem OK for me @ almost 200 lbs.

And yes, don't piss in the shitter and you'll be much happier packing it out.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

wil Sat, September 12, 2009 - 11:49 AM by wil

Just need a 5 gallon bucket with a cover and some wood shavings. Cedar is nice choice for shavings. You can get that as pet litter at walmart etc in compressed blocks. A lot lighter weight and easier to deal with than kitty litter. This works just fine. Try to pee as little as possible in the bucket, just pee on the ground or in another bucket to pour around some lucky plant. A homemade toilet seat top is a nice addition to the unit.

I lived in a fairly upscale ecologically minded community a couple of years ago that had this as the system for most of the folks there. We dumped the buckets in big wooden frames and threw in a little straw. These grew by far the nicest crop of button mushrooms, the kind people put on pizzas, that i've ever seen.........but did not feel like eating them somehow. There was no smell at all! Highly civilized way to do business, imo.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Briggi Sat, September 12, 2009 - 12:45 PM by Briggi

Most ecologically sound method is composting toilet that produces rich black soil suitable for growing. This solution good for urban/suburban dwellers because unit is sealed keeping down odor & flies, and vented to outside. But units are expensive.
If living in countryside then an Australian-style homebuilt composting toilet is way cheaper and as effective.

Other country solutions are
- open frame composting toilet where garden cuttings & kitchen scraps & dead animals are composted as well
- Indonesian style fishpond shitter built of bamboo on stilts over pond, where human waste drops directly into pond to become fish feed
- Goa style piggy toilet where waste slides down chute to the waiting maws of neighborhood pigs

If you live out of a van, then some of you may know about shitting into a shopping bag and pissing into a jar. Never mind the bucket and seat --- There's probably just room enough in the van to squat down (squatting is the natural position) but not room enough to carry around a large bucket of shit. Once having done your job, you knot off the sack, and tighten the lid to the jar --- until suitable disposal.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Todd Sat, September 12, 2009 - 10:35 PM by Todd

I've seen a lot of composting toilets. I've never seen one that actually worked. For the most part they were expensive fewmet repositories. It would be nice to find a good one, but I've been disappointed so often that it's hard to work up enthusiasm.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Briggi Sat, September 12, 2009 - 10:53 PM by Briggi

I've seen alot of the homebuilt, homestyle country jobs that worked pretty good. And they are green as all get out.

For the factory built fiberglass units you'll need to follow instructions to get shit to happen.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

db Sun, September 13, 2009 - 1:54 AM by db

What about the solar toilet?
I never did make one but have always thought they were ingenious.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

db Sun, September 13, 2009 - 2:54 AM by db

Could be shitty if the neighborhood all had one of these!

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

db Sun, September 13, 2009 - 2:55 AM by db

>>to Richard

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Briggi Sun, September 13, 2009 - 8:50 AM by Briggi

what's a solar toilet?
When we were kids (different generation) we'd joke about an atomic toilet. In the 1950s atomic power was going to solve everything.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

db Sun, September 13, 2009 - 4:45 PM by db

It is a drop style toilet with a proper glass angled, South side window to dehydrate the compost.
I originally saw it in its simple form in the Earthship books when I was building my house about 13 years ago. My inlaws saw my plans & cut me off by delivering me a $1500 flush, remote control, temperature controlled heated seat & water washlet bude toilet for me to install for their princess daughter.

Google it. I am sure it has developed much more.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

db Sun, September 13, 2009 - 4:46 PM by db

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Briggi Sun, September 13, 2009 - 7:57 PM by Briggi

American ingenuity at its best -- attach a passive solar air collector/heater to accelerate the process.

Almost as good and way simpler is the open frame elevated composting toilet. good for rural settings like farms. One adds fibrous material, like weeds, straw, prunings, etc., in between human uses, just like the solar model, and this provides sufficient aeration layerings. Inasmuch as the process occurs more or less out in the open, under the use platform, plenty of daylight also gets into the process.

Leave it to well-intentioned but misguided oldskool inlaws to undermine your best efforts.

But the "washlet" , which effectively adds bidet features to the commode, is not entirely a bad idea. Rinsing after one's movements with water is practical, simple and hygenic. The vast majority of the planet's population uses no toilet paper but rinses with water instead. (Save a tree.) In India and China and Africa, water rinse is standard procedure. Just about every flush toilet you find in China today has a small hose to its side intended for personal rinsing. Egypt too. Sure helps prevent itchy crotch syndrome.
Of course the same rinse is available by way of a small container kept at the commode or in the outhouse that can be filled with water each time for this purpose. The Indians use a small brass pot; the Arabs will have at least an old tin can around.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

wil Mon, September 14, 2009 - 1:38 AM by wil

The solar toilet is cool.

I've installed a few composting toilets and lived around alternatives to the flush toilet all my adult life.

Amazingly, a damn 5 gal plastic bucket and wood shavings i find to be the easiest and somehow strangely the most civilized method among the many i've tried and seen.

For cheap and effective porta potty, i think it has got to be the hands down winner.

BTW, how does one responsibly get rid of a plastic bag full of ripe shit?

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Dan Mon, September 14, 2009 - 8:37 AM by

BTW, how does one responsibly get rid of a plastic bag full of ripe shit? <<

First, you douse it with lighter fluid, then you find someone you don't like, who has a front porch......... they'll take it from there.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Briggi Mon, September 14, 2009 - 9:35 AM by Briggi

How to dispose?
What does a young mom do with baby's Pampers (aka "baby burgers") ---

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Dan Mon, September 14, 2009 - 10:47 AM by

I believe the new disposables are micro degradable, but not Bio degradable, almost as good. But at least, "they ain't yo mama's diapers ", anymore

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

db Mon, September 14, 2009 - 4:47 PM by db

Don't get me wrong..., I appreciate it! I am spoiled now & even find it a bit of a struggle when I am away from my washlet for too long anymore.

Another topic, but as for flush toilets go, I find a lot of respect for the Japanese toilets all having the option for a S. flush or a L. flush. Water is abundant here but I was kind of shocked when arriving in the desert of New Mexico to see how 'decadent' of a flush was involved just for a piss. It is incredible how much water is 'pissed' away. One would think conserving water would be more of a concern in a desert city(including LA I am sure).

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

wil Mon, September 14, 2009 - 4:57 PM by wil

America shits in its rivers and wipes its butt with its forests.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

db Mon, September 14, 2009 - 5:17 PM by db

Yeah, and it is sad that your comment made me laugh.

But not only America...

Japan has been bad but has been changing super fast the last 10 years. Americans would be amazed by the recycling that is happening now inside of Tokyo. At least New Mexicoan's.

BTW, a major river in Japan has been 'recovered' by a massive charcoal treatment.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

girl mark Thu, September 17, 2009 - 3:08 PM by

I don't see any reason to use peat moss, there are serious ecological consequences to destroying peat bogs to make peat moss. Lots of other options have been mentioned and they work great in a 'humanure handbook' (google it, it's free online) composting toilet.

I've also seen LOTS of those work great, the trick is to use a real, aerobic composting pile, which includes turning the compost periodically (which isn't gross, actually, the feces smell goes away pretty quickly and it becomes just another compost turning job) and not one of the weird market-ready contraptions that a few companies sell.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Richard Fri, September 18, 2009 - 8:48 PM by Richard

<<how does one responsibly get rid of a plastic bag full of ripe shit? >>

Apparently, you turn it into a diy toilet project

On a more serious note, here's a deluxe 5 gallon bucket commode

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Dan Sat, September 19, 2009 - 5:45 AM by

Who said anything about peat moss ? and besides Peat moss is an ongoing Agricultural business, not a destructive harvest, has been for many years. bogs are controlled, not destroyed.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

wil Sat, September 19, 2009 - 6:19 AM by wil

Harvesting peat moss does destroy the bog as we harvest way way more than can be replenished in a realistic time frame. There is also the considerable energy cost of digging, bailing and shipping.

Wood shavings and a five gallon bucket are very cheap and amazingly easy. With cedar shavings and a seat fixed up for the top of the bucket, you are shittin in high cotton, so to speak.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Briggi Sat, September 19, 2009 - 9:33 AM by Briggi

Other ways to keep down flies & stink >>
cover with>
- a scoop of ash
- a handful of sand or earth

flies are pretty reluctant to burrow down through powdery granular material. --
totally covered greatly keeps down bad aroma

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

girl mark Sat, September 19, 2009 - 11:06 AM by

If you're going to build an outhouse for your composting toilet, here's a great no-stink, no-flies design from my friends (you'll have to click on the plans to actually be able to read this tiny scan, damn design people got hold of the website and it's hard to read but pretty otherwise).

Basically, we had a regular outhouse sort of scenario right against the house, with the poop going into a bucket that was inside the box that you sat on (there was a regular toilet seat, but they'd removed the little tabs that normally keep the seat off the porcelain toilet, so the seat was right on top of the box with no gap for flies). The whole thing was vented through a small chimney. The chimney had a fan in it that drew air away from the outhouse. There was a screen on top of the chimney.

The plans involve a small solar panel so that the fan only operates during the day, but there's no reason why you couldn't just set up the fan on a lamp timer so it only ran during the day. Or, of course, all day and night , if you don't care about the power consumption, which isn't a whole lot.

In case it's not clear, the composting process involved lifting the top of the box, taking out the bucket, taking it to the compost pile, and dumping it. Manure composts really fast. Dumping it smelled bad. The next time or two that you turn the compost it might smell just a little bad, after that it was fine. The compost pile itself didn't smell other than while you were turning it or dumping a fresh bucket.

I'm thinking, as a result of this thread, about building a tumbling composter and going back to a composting toilet. It just makes so much more sense than crapping into drinking water.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

girl mark Sat, September 19, 2009 - 11:08 AM by

oops, forgot the link:

of course you don't need an outhouse if you're just using a 'compost pile' (as opposed to trying to have a compartment under your toilet where the composting happens, which might be helpful for year-round use in cold climates). Many houses I've been to, and some of my current land-mates, just have a bucket in the bathroom, along with a bucket of wood chips or straw for covering the poop, and carry out the bucket to the compost pile. You just have to have a big enough bathroom to fit an extra 'commode' or even just a bucket with a toilet seat. It will smell more while you're taking a crap, than if your crap was falling into drinking water.

Get yourself a properly working bathroom fan in that case, they're only about $10 and easy to install.

This is the one place where the solar shitter I just linked to has an advantage -the little fan in the chimney vents the whole room just like a bathroom fan, but does so through the toilet box itself, so the odors don't come out into the room quite as much.

There's no reason why you can't build a smaller version of the outhouse's toilet box , in your actual in-house bathroom, if you've got the space of course. Then vent it using the always-on computer fan in case of ongoing smells, or a bathroom fan on a switch, and regular bathroom vent hose or dryer hose for the times you're taking a crap, if it's really an issue.

Re: Cheap effective Porta potty

Briggi Sun, September 20, 2009 - 6:23 AM by Briggi

I mean if you're not composting, and using a bucket as temporary collection method, then you need to cover your shit and wood chips may allow flies so then use sand or better ash to cover it until disposal.

If you are composting then some designs exist that are very more energy efficient. Look for a design that is passove rather than powered, to make life easier. For instance in a composting outhouse traditionaly a stack venting the pit below works fine passively (without fan) due temp differential air currents (exothermy).
In the Australian design, built on a hillside, you dump onto a downward angled ramp which allows collection of semi cured soil from a trapdoor below after suitable cure time. No need to lift out heavy drums of fresh stuff -- it slides down to you while breaking down and the system is vented from the sides also to aerobiscize & dehydrate. You open the trapdoor at the foot of the ramp down below behind the cabin and collect the soil in a barrow for further composting.

Complications are not always superior. but Americans love gadgets. Nano Solar Atomic shithouse gotta be better. (not)

Paper, if you use it in addtion to rinsewater, or in place of it, can be collected in a wastepaper can and Not allowed to go down with the compost material --- then the soiled paper is burnt seperately. But it could even be added to the compost if you're sure it's biologically soft and will degrade along with everything else.

Some people regard flies as allies in the breaking down/ transformation of the soil, while others regard flies as The Enemy of Health. Those in the latter group have to either cover up each dump or else screen out the flies. In a very populated area, flies can become a health issue and there the old mantra of Shit<Flies>Food>You takes over and you don't have the luxury of allowing natural systems to interplay.

I don't have the link for the Australian type ramp trapdoor wood sheetmetal composter toilet cabin. But it sure works good and for my money is the simplest easiest and sensible-est when it comes to a permanent home toilet design.

Toilet seat for 5 gallon poly bucket

Fri, September 25, 2009 - 1:13 PM by Unsubsc...


Re: Toilet seat for 5 gallon poly bucket

Briggi Fri, September 25, 2009 - 1:52 PM by Briggi

speaking of military solutions, is one known to many generations of warriors, a description of which can be found in the army field manual >>
the Slit Trench.
Wide enough to straddle in the squatting sitting-on-your-heels position, it's deep enough, and the dug out earth can be backfilled a scoop at a time in order to cover each deposit. Works good. All it takes in equipment is a foxhole shovel.

Re: Toilet seat for 5 gallon poly bucket

wil Sat, September 26, 2009 - 7:42 AM by wil

Great find cliff , with the army surplus bucket top! I'd been wondering when i would see such for sale, and am amused and delighted it is u.s. army surplus and not chinese.......oh damn, might be made in china anyway i realize. They seem reasonably priced to me and so likely are made in china. Looking around, i see these sold by cabela's ( a fancy store) as the "luggable loo" and they'll sell you a five gal bucket to go with it and their "douible dootie" bags to to in as liners that make waste disposal "a snap" .......but i still wonder wtf people actually do with those plastic bags full of shit.

Briggi, i had not been aware of how i've been putting mycellf in harms way by occasionally living with the fire hazard of a bucket full of wood chips and shit. My god, i am lucky to have survived somehow.

Re: Toilet seat for 5 gallon poly bucket

Briggi Sat, September 26, 2009 - 9:16 AM by Briggi

3am. driveby. dumpster behind safeway.

Re: Toilet seat for 5 gallon poly bucket

Briggi Sat, September 26, 2009 - 9:21 AM by Briggi

In Vietnam the troops would take each shit filled oildrum, cover it with a gallon of diesel, and set it on fire.

Re: Toilet seat for 5 gallon poly bucket

Dan Sat, September 26, 2009 - 10:20 AM by

I saw one of those bucket w/ toilet attachments, hanging on the back of a pickup tailgate in Kentuckyville, somewhere. It had a label stating, " Not for use while driving". ;-)

Re: Toilet seat for 5 gallon poly bucket

Briggi Sat, September 26, 2009 - 10:28 AM by Briggi least not during the b.j.