New to Scamp 13', water question? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-22-2017, 08:31 AM   #1
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Name: Wenonah
Trailer: 13' Scamp
Ohio
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New to Scamp 13', water question?

Hello everyone,

I recently purchased a 1989 13' scamp and I am feeling a bit overwhelmed by what are probably minute details. I would like to drain my holding tank. It is not connected to electricity so I am assuming that there is a way to start the flow into the tubing to the sink. I realize I have to get the water started in some way and don't know the best way to do that if there is NOT a pump. The water is not water I put in there. The bottom of the cover over the tank is very moldy. I plan on replacing that and doubt I will use the tank, but would like to drain it. There is a small valve on the end of the tank closest to the front of the trailer. Don't know if this was a modification or if it was originally there. The valve has a small turning lever on it which I assume would open and close the tank. However, it goes around in a full circle. I will try several positions once I learn the best way to get a flow going!

Also, I have found a way that I believe will work beautifully for recovering cushions and I was wondering if anyone has anyone seen this done or used it?
How to make easy vintage trailer dinette cushions
I will be cleaning the cushions on the next warm, sunny day and doing the recover.

Last question, I have a fantastic fan to replace the fan in the rv, wondering if I need to use gray putty and a lap sealant or if the gray putty will suffice? It is a gray putty that is rolled up with white paper separating the concentric circles. Not sure what it is called...

Seems like so much to do, but I know it will be worth it. Not very handy, but plan on learning now!

I appreciate any and all feedback!
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Old 04-22-2017, 09:13 AM   #2
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Name: Gordon
Trailer: 2015 Scamp (16 Std Layout 4) with '15 Toyota Sienna LE Tug
North Carolina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wenonah View Post
Hello everyone,

I recently purchased a 1989 13' scamp and I am feeling a bit overwhelmed by what are probably minute details. I would like to drain my holding tank. It is not connected to electricity so I am assuming that there is a way to start the flow into the tubing to the sink. I realize I have to get the water started in some way and don't know the best way to do that if there is NOT a pump. The water is not water I put in there. The bottom of the cover over the tank is very moldy. I plan on replacing that and doubt I will use the tank, but would like to drain it. There is a small valve on the end of the tank closest to the front of the trailer. Don't know if this was a modification or if it was originally there. The valve has a small turning lever on it which I assume would open and close the tank. However, it goes around in a full circle. I will try several positions once I learn the best way to get a flow going!..
It sounds like you are talking about your freshwater tank and not a waste water tank. Holding tank refers to a waste (waste holding) tank, which in Scamps is either (or both) a "gray water" tank from the shower and sink, or black water from tank (under) the commode.

In all cases, the tanks are drained by a magical method discovered by Sir Isaac Newton (gravity). If I am correct that you are looking at the fresh water tank, then when it is open the valve should drain (most of) the water in one position (open) and closed would be 180 degrees from that. Some water always seems to remain but leaving the valve open while you drive and get a little more out while also possibly contaminating the water, which is you case likely not a issue. But the valve is likely broken if it goes full circle although its possible its a valve that does that.

And are you talking about the cover over the tank being the one that fit is the bench seat hole? Or are you talking about a cover built in to the tank? If the latter, it sounds like a modification.

Photos would be gold here, and most likely zero in on what you are asking about without any doubt remaining.

But the best thing is to find someone local who knows a little about R/Vs to walk you through it. The systems are more alike than different and Scamps are about the simplest so someone who owns most any type of RV should be able to figure yours out and help you see how things work.
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Old 04-22-2017, 09:20 AM   #3
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Name: Gordon
Trailer: 2015 Scamp (16 Std Layout 4) with '15 Toyota Sienna LE Tug
North Carolina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wenonah View Post
...

Last question, I have a fantastic fan to replace the fan in the rv, wondering if I need to use gray putty and a lap sealant or if the gray putty will suffice? It is a gray putty that is rolled up with white paper separating the concentric circles. Not sure what it is called...
..
Hopefully its butyl tape. Scamp also caulks the edges but if the install is done right with butyl tape I don't know if that is needed or just comestice. Perhaps someone else can say for sure but I would think the fan would have all that in the instructions.
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Old 04-22-2017, 09:33 AM   #4
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That valve you found is a drain valve. IIRC, 90 degrees to the tube is closed and in-line with the tube is open. Tilting the trailer will help, but it still probably won't drain out 100%.

If your sink has a hand pump, then there isn't a 12V water pump, and it pumps from the fresh water tank. If there is also a single knob faucet, that's for connecting to city water with a hose on the side of the trailer. It's completely separate from the on-board water system.

It's unlikely, but if there is no hand pump at the sink, then you probably do have a 12V water pump. It has to have power from the battery or from the converter while plugged into shore power. There is also a switch somewhere to turn it on.

I'd start by draining the tank as much as possible and refilling it partway. Pump it through the lines to the sink. Just start pumping- it will take a while. If nothing comes after extended pumping, it's possible the seal on the pump is dried out. Sometimes you can disassemble the pump and revive the seal with mineral oil; otherwise, you may have to replace the pump.

Once you have water in the system, inspect carefully for any leaks. If water was left in the tank by the PO, it's possible there is freeze damage to tank, hoses, or fittings. Follow the water line from the tank to the sink. Mine goes from the tank in the curbside dinette seat, along the lower back of the dinette under the rat fur, through the streetside dinette seat, and into the galley cabinet.

Once you have water moving through the system and no leaks, add a capful of bleach to the tank. Pump it through to the sink to disinfect the lines. Drive around with the bleach solution in the tank to let is splash around a bit. Let it sit overnight.

Then drain, refill, pump, and repeat several times until it comes out clean.
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Old 04-22-2017, 10:34 AM   #5
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Name: Gordon
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North Carolina
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Originally Posted by Wenonah View Post
... The bottom of the cover over the tank is very moldy. I plan on replacing that and doubt I will use the tank,...
As usual, Jon's advice is great... but if you don't plan to use the fresh water tank and associated plumbing, then there are other options. A little pure bleach in the tank with some water might clean it up enough to make in un-gross and removing it altogether is an option (you could still have the outside "city" water connection if you wanted to use the plumbing without the onboard tank.) There are many options, it depends on how you want to do things.

And as I read Jon's post it sounded like he said the valve turns 90 degrees. Mine has to go 180 degrees from open to close. I'm sure there are different valves out there, esp since 1989.
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Old 04-22-2017, 11:08 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gordon2 View Post
...as I read Jon's post it sounded like he said the valve turns 90 degrees. Mine has to go 180 degrees from open to close. I'm sure there are different valves out there, esp since 1989.
I'm going by memory- could be wrong about the valve, and of course, you're quite right about changes in design over that many years.

I don't use my on-board tank, but I chose to leave it in place against future needs (mine or a future owner's). I cleaned it out as described shortly after I got it 4.5 years ago but haven't fooled with it since.

If I were going to use the tank regularly, I like the idea of installing a marine deck hatch in the top so you can reach inside to clean it thoroughly. It also works for filling much faster than the exterior spout (as long as you don't let it overflow!).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wenonah View Post
...Also, I have found a way that I believe will work beautifully for recovering cushions and I was wondering if anyone has anyone seen this done or used it?
How to make easy vintage trailer dinette cushions
I will be cleaning the cushions on the next warm, sunny day and doing the recover...
That method will work; it's been discussed before. It won't be as tight or as long-lasting as full covers, but it will get you going. The only thing I would be careful about is making sure the staples don't scratch the fiberglass bench seats. Maybe glue a line of trim over the row of staples?

You can also order new cushion covers from Scamp. They're well-made from sturdy solid fabrics with edge welting, and very reasonable compared to custom upholstery.
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Old 04-22-2017, 02:43 PM   #7
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Name: David
Trailer: 2014 13' Scamp -standard w/ front bunk
Vermont
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Wenonah,
We don't use our tank for drinking water but find it very useful to supply water for washing dishes and other general purposes when, as is often the case, we are camping without a "city water" supply. If this tank is too far gone on the gross spectrum to clean, you might at some point want to replace it. I concur with Jon's advice to install a marine port to facilitate regular cleaning of the tank. It's not hard to do - if you decide to do it I can give you info on how to install a port, as I'm sure others on the forum can.
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Old 04-22-2017, 03:10 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
If I were going to use the tank regularly, I like the idea of installing a marine deck hatch in the top so you can reach inside to clean it thoroughly. It also works for filling much faster than the exterior spout (as long as you don't let it overflow!).
Jon, I did install a 4" deck plate that's accessible from seat hatch. The 4" size easily allows me to reach all areas of the 25 gal tank. Cheap and useful mod too, SS hardware, 3M 5200 sealant and a 4" hole saw.
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Old 04-22-2017, 05:04 PM   #9
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Name: Wenonah
Trailer: 13' Scamp
Ohio
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Thank you to everyone!

Gordon,

You are correct. It is my fresh water tank. I don't have a holding tank...now that I know what it means. The cover I am talking about is the one that fits in the bench seat hole. I think I am going to coat that with a Zinzer coating that prohibits mold growth. Thank you for your helpful questions and advice. I will be posting pictures soon.

Jon,

I did figure out how to open the valve, however, it is just dripping out very slowly. I lowered the front of the RV to no avail. I will be following the line and seeing if there are any leaks.

David,

Great thinking regarding not removing the tank. I will definitely be installing a port. It would be nice to have water for dishes and to clean up inside. Wondering if they sell a replacement tank with a built in port.

Sorry to everyone, I have tried for a good 10 minutes to figure out how to quote just a snippet of text and can't seem to master it! Thank you for all of the good suggestions.

I just went out there and looked. I did get the dripping to increase by putting a q-tip in the tube and poking around. Stings of black, gross stuff came out. I would imagine that I can change that tube and possible the whole assembly out of the tank pretty easily? I don't know that I now trust bleach to do the job completely...
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Old 04-22-2017, 05:17 PM   #10
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Sorry to everyone, I have tried for a good 10 minutes to figure out how to quote just a snippet of text and can't seem to master it! Thank you for all of the good suggestions.
Just click on the QUOTE box and then select what you want to delete, hit delete and then you can add what you like. Be sure to leave the square brackets for attribution.
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Old 04-22-2017, 05:50 PM   #11
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Since you seem to have decided to use the tank after all, I would make the port the first project. Here's what you're looking for, both on Amazon:
4" Deck Plate
6" Deck Plate

After you cut the hole and before you install the port, get inside and clean the tank out thoroughly.

In the meantime you could try snaking a small bottle brush, the narrow test tube kind, up the drain plug from the bottom.
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Old 04-22-2017, 05:52 PM   #12
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I was thinking that with as much mold as you described, the drain might be plugged. Try adding water, possibly with the bleach or maybe vinegar and see if you can get some flow going.

It may take a bit of work to get it flowing. If you are going to add the hatch, then that would solve a lot of frustration quickly.

BTW: When I had my Casita, I put bleach in the fresh water tank and thought I would never get rid of it. You don't need very much.

Enjoy your adventure.
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Old 04-23-2017, 06:15 AM   #13
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Name: Wendy Lee
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Hi,

Like Gordon's fresh water tank, the valve on mine has to go 180 to close too. To a new trailer owner, little things like this can be confusing and frustrating. I remember reading over and over about a 90 to close and an inline position for water to run, which is normal and makes sense. But not my water tank!
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Old 04-23-2017, 01:49 PM   #14
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Name: Wenonah
Trailer: 13' Scamp
Ohio
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Yes!

Quote:
Originally Posted by CampyTime View Post
Hi,


To a new trailer owner, little things like this can be confusing and frustrating.
Yes, it really can be CampyTime. I am so thankful for this forum. You guys have answered so many of my questions and usually they are simple fixes that would have taken me forever to figure out. Such a nice place...
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Old 04-23-2017, 01:51 PM   #15
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Name: Wenonah
Trailer: 13' Scamp
Ohio
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Originally Posted by Dave Fish View Post
I was thinking that with as much mold as you described, the drain might be plugged. Try adding water, possibly with the bleach or maybe vinegar and see if you can get some flow going.

It may take a bit of work to get it flowing. If you are going to add the hatch, then that would solve a lot of frustration quickly.

BTW: When I had my Casita, I put bleach in the fresh water tank and thought I would never get rid of it. You don't need very much.

Enjoy your adventure.
Thanks, Dave. I too believe it is plugged. I am going to get a hatch and make short use of the whole situation. Thanks for the warning about the quantity of bleach.
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Old 04-23-2017, 03:48 PM   #16
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Just click on the QUOTE box and then select what you want to delete, hit delete and then you can add what you like. Be sure to leave the square brackets for attribution.
If you click on those leading/trailing quotation marks, you can get several posts in your reply and then type your text in between. When you want to shorten some of them, delete what you don't want but don't touch those square brackets. Best is to replace the deleted text with ellipses ... ... ...

An old camper is an adventure by itself, but worth the effort.
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