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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
A shower has been the one item that could make me look longingly at a 159". The net is crowded with folks who store stuff in the shower they never use, but as hikers we need one. In the best hiking conditions, campground showers are often non-existent or closed, plus we don't like to forego a nice boondocking spot for a campground just so we can take a shower. We have a shower set up outside the slider which works well in warm, calm conditions, but that's not when we're likely to be hiking. And no, baby wipes, etc., are simply not enough, particularly several days in a row.

The "plumbing" for the shower is a "Helio". We used it outside on our last trip and we're impressed. The Helio holds just shy of 3 gallons. We each use about a gallon, so there's a safety factor. To make the Helio easier to carry when full, I made a carrier with a solid base and handles.

So far, we have heated a bit less than a gallon on the butane stove for each Helio fill. We'd like to find a better way--that Isotemp would be great if we had a place for it, but we don't.

So on to the shower stall. The superstructure weighs less than a pound. I can set up or take down in less than a minute. Like most folks contemplating this, I started thinking round. That just didn't work. Pieces started to fall into place when I started thinking in straight lines.

For some time, I have had two stainless steel hooks about 20" apart attached to the ceiling rib in the doorway. They are handy for hanging various things. I also have magnetic hooks about 36" apart on the metal surface below the overhead bin. These are my attachment points.

Just dropping from those attachment points would give me a trapezoid. A 36" tent pole hooked into eyelets in the straps gives me a 2' x 3' rectangle. Given that the superstructure is so light, I hung it with 3/8" grosgrain ribbon and plastic rings from Hobby Lobby. I made the tent pole from parts obtained at questoutfitters.com.

Before the door:




The structure is coated ripstock nylon from questoutfitters.com. This is the same fabric I made my awning from and which lines the sides of my door screen. Light, sturdy, and works easily. I ran the fabric horizontally, so top and bottom edges are selvage. The sides taper down at the corners to fit into a 15" x 18" x 6" plastic bus box (for clearing restaurant tables) that I found at Sam's. Quite sturdy. It holds 7 gallons, so a couple of gallons should be easy to handle.



The bottom of the curtain goes about halfway into the box. To keep it there, I lined the box with the mosquito curtain material that I replaced with noseeum a few months ago. Ordinary netting would work fine. I ran this fabric to the top edge of the box, then sewed the bottom of the curtain to it. This will also keep the wet curtain from sticking to the box.

I then cut down a 15" x 20" poly cutting board from Walmart and placed it inside the box on top of the netting. Besides protecting the feet from the ribs in the bottom of the box, this board firmly holds the bottom assembly in place.

Looking down before door install:


There is a nominally 5" doorway, but it widens when the rings are slid on the pole. A "door" attaches to one side and is closed by looping its ring over the outer end of the pole. I left it as a full rectangle, so it drapes around enough to allow the wand to snake through without risk of leakage.







With the shower stall in place, all drawers and fridge are fully accessible, the counter is usable, the potty can be deployed, and there's still room to move around. Only the front seats and the microwave are obstructed. This means we can leave the stall up to dry before storing. (Superstructure easily fits in bus box.). The MaxAir directly above should help with drying and humidity control.

Wand holder and soap dish are works in progress. Soap dish will probably be a ladle hung from the pole. Wand holder may be a modified ladle.

And, BTW, we won't need full window cover to use this. Our one-led license plate light over the counter gives enough light to see but not be seen.

We should get to test it when we head to the Grand Canyon in the next week or so.
 

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Nice!!
 

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That's a great way to add a shower when needed without wasting space the rest of the time. Looks like it will work very well. As usual, MsNomer made it look perfect. :)
 

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So let me be sure on this. One can get a beer and have a comfortable place to sit while ones SO becomes the modest subject of a camper video for Utube? Right?

Nice work! Congratulations.

Point us to the vid of MrNomers first wet test! This should be good!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Raising the floor is on the to-do list. The sides must taper inward so that standing near an edge won't flip it or the user.

I could easily make something of wood, but for this I want plastic. What I really need is some kind of thick small-holed plastic grating. This would also serve as baffling when removing the pan with water. Ideal would something like plastic cardboard with flat surfaces both sides about 2" thick that can hold 160 lb without deforming.
 

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I have done a similar removable shower. For the curtain, I use PVC pipe and connectors as the curtain rod and then just hang a standard shower curtain with rings on the PVC rod. The rod can be made to any size and then hung from hooks on the ceiling using velcro cable ties. My rod is about 24" X 36" and I use 2 overlapping curtains. I was even able to attach a hand held shower head fitting into the rod using a threaded PVC connector. This allows for hands free shower head use just like at home. The shower head can be lifted out of the fitting for hand held use and then put back into the fitting for hands free use.

For the tub, I am using a standard 24" X 36" masons tub from home depot. To raise the floor to avoid standing in water I use a folding cedar shower deck something like this:

https://uedata.amazon.com/GSI-Outdoors-Cedar-Shower-Deck/dp/B001LF3IJI

When opened, it is a perfect fit inside the tub and raises the floor about 1-2 inches.

To drain the tub, I use my hand operated Kayak bilge pump. I can drain 2 - 3 gallons with 20 to 30 pulls on the pump.

My shower head is a standard handheld shower plumbed into a shurflo 12V demand pump. Hot water can be obtained from solar shower bags, heating on a stove or electrically heated while driving. The hot water is then poured into an insulated cooler and siphoned out by the shurflo pump. The insulated cooler keeps the water warm for several hours.

Improvements I am considering:

I would like the PVC curtain rod with curtain and rings attached to fit inside the tub for easy up and down as MsNomer's does. However to fit this into the tub the rod has to be too small and constricting when showering. So I am thinking about some sort of expanding rod using different diameter PVC sliding into each other. Or perhaps just have a coupler fitting to add additional length to each of the sides.
 

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I am still working out the electrical heating while driving. I have 2 sources for electric water heating. Both require a suitable inverter and water container. The first one is a 1000 Watt bucket heater like this:

[ame]https://www.amazon.com/Precision-Premier-Line-742G-Submersible/dp/B000BDB4UG/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1510505928&sr=8-3&keywords=bucket+heater[/ame]


With the bucket heater, I use a 12 gallon igloo cube cooler and fill it about half way. I am still experimenting and once I decide if this is the way to go, I will drill a small hole in the cooler lid so that I can insert the heater and close the lid tight.

I had some concerns about the 1000 Watt draw, so I also tried this:

https://www.monoprice.com/product?p_id=21594

The 800 watt Sous Vide cooker has the advantage of a digital thermometer display and thermostat. It also has a built in clamp to attach to the side of the container. But I find it only heats to a depth of about 4-5 inches and is limited to 4 gallons. So I am still looking for a container for optimal heating and storage. I think the best container is one that is about 5 inches deep, will hold 4 gallons and fit inside my cube cooler so that I can fill to the top and not worry about spillover.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Ms,
Nice setup! How about a small spigot attached to the pan so you could just slide the pan to the doorway and release the water to a bucket or whatever? ... no lifting.
Thought about that and considered a home water heater tray for that feature. We decided we like that this pan absolutely cannot leak. We will slide to the door, then lift. It is easy to carry.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
tgblake, how much water do you heat at a time and how long does it take with the bucket heater? We need less than a gallon if near boiling.

I found this equation for heating water in a tank:

Watts = 3.1 x Gallons x ΔT (in °F) / Heat-Up Time (in hrs)

To heat one gallon of water 150° in one hour would only require 465 watts. This would be quite doable on our system even when stopped.

I've been eyeing an Instapot anyway and wonder if it could serve this function, too. It has the advantage of a "keep warm" setting. Serious ownside would be transfer to the Helio.
 

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I've been eyeing an Instapot anyway and wonder if it could serve this function, too. It has the advantage of a "keep warm" setting. Serious ownside would be transfer to the Helio.
I've got that InstaPot Mini the SO is afraid of. Very lightly used. Might let it go for a song just to get it out of the house.

What about something like this? It has a keep-warm feature, but I'm not sure what kind of current it would draw. You might be able to run a hose from the spigot to the Helios

[ame]https://www.amazon.com/Hamilton-Beach-D50065-Commercial-Stainless-Steel/dp/B000ON9TKU/ref=sr_1_9?ie=UTF8&qid=1510510472&sr=8-9&keywords=coffee+water+heater[/ame]

Edit:

Or put an immersion heater/warmer in something like this:

[ame]https://www.amazon.com/Carlisle-LD250N03-Cateraide-Insulated-Beverage/dp/B01N19M34J/ref=sr_1_2?s=industrial&ie=UTF8&qid=1510514313&sr=1-2&keywords=insulated+coffee+dispenser[/ame]

.
 

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I haven't tried small quantities. When I first got the bucket heater I did a timed test with about 7.5 gallons. Starting at 64 degrees it went like this:

10 minutes 71 degrees
20 min 81 deg
30 min 90 deg
40 min 99 deg
50 min 108 deg
60 min 116 deg
70 min 124 deg
80 min 131 deg
90 min 137 deg
100 min 143 deg

I stopped there and closed the cooler lid. 7 hours later temperature was at 121 degrees. Overnight after 15 hours it was at 104 degrees.

So with small quantities would probably go much faster. One would need a narrow tall container because the water depth has to cover the element inside the protective cover.

I did a similar test with the Sous Vide Cooker, but can't find my data now. I used the same cooler container but had to put about 10 gallons (maybe 12 inches deep) in to reach the submersion mark on the cooker. I do recall that the heating time to raise 10 gallons to 140 degrees was about 30 minutes. However, it was an illusion. The water temp was 140 for about the top 5-6 inches of depth. The water was cold below that. I stirred it up and had a net temp of about 90 degrees. So again, smaller quantities and the right depth might work well. The cooker claims to be able to raise the temp to 212 degrees.

I am still working on the best combination of volume, depth, container dimensions, etc.
 

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Raising the floor is on the to-do list. The sides must taper inward so that standing near an edge won't flip it or the user.

I could easily make something of wood, but for this I want plastic. What I really need is some kind of thick small-holed plastic grating. This would also serve as baffling when removing the pan with water. Ideal would something like plastic cardboard with flat surfaces both sides about 2" thick that can hold 160 lb without deforming.
If you were willing to go a bit larger in your bus box/tub size, a standard commercial dish washing rack turned upside down might do the trick. There are many options for these, but they are usually square.

https://www.webstaurantstore.com/no...-peg-rack-with-closed-sides/274RKCLAPPEG.html

It should fit in a tub like this one with some extra space on the sides.

[ame]https://www.amazon.com/MACCOURT-PRODUCTS-TV245969-26x20x6-Plastic/dp/B001AQ0CDI/ref=sr_1_4?s=hi&ie=UTF8&qid=1510561224&sr=1-4&keywords=20+x+20+tub[/ame]

(You can find one cheaper at Truevalue, but their links don't work here for some reason.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
The problem is already solved. I remembered that years ago I picked up a 1.5" block of poly? at Habitat. Last night I roughed it out, should be finished today. This stuff is fine with bandsaw, router and forstners where the debris flies, but is no friend of the jigsaw. Roughed out, it stands above 5 quarts of water. By the time I'm done, I'll be at 2 gallons or close. If I don't quite make it, we will still be fine because MrNomer doesn't care if his feet are wet.

I had never heard of a peg rack. Thanks for bringing it to my attention. Who knows what it might be useful for besides dishes.

I've been pondering your setup. If your tray is 24" x 36" and your upper supports are 24" x 36" but break down, why won't the pieces fit in the tray?
 

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I've been pondering your setup. If your tray is 24" x 36" and your upper supports are 24" x 36" but break down, why won't the pieces fit in the tray?
The 24 X 36 tub is outside dimensions and slopes inward. At the bottom of the tub it is probably closer to 20 X 30. My goal is to keep the shower curtain with rings attached permanently on the rod. Then just lift up and attach to ceiling hooks. If I have to re-assemble the rod and then thread the curtain onto the rod every time I use it, it gets annoying. The PVC couplers are only slightly smaller than the curtain rings, so things bind up as I try to slide the curtain around the rod. So I prefer to just have it on there all the time. Maybe I can find some larger rings. Or look for smaller diameter PVC, but then it loses some rigidity. It's not a big deal. I had some PVC cut to size for a free standing shower frame I used when I camped out of a pickup truck. So I was just using the pieces I already had. I can probably cut it down a little and have it fit in the tub fully assembled, but I enjoy the space of the wider dimensions. Still a work in progress.
 

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I had never heard of a peg rack. Thanks for bringing it to my attention. Who knows what it might be useful for besides dishes.
I got the habit of cruising restaurant supply stores when looking for stainless steel shelving. All very interesting and usually cheap if you can find one with reasonable minimum quantities. Good source for pre-made table tops (if you're into such things)

I think the sou vide idea is brilliant. They have thermostats, are low wattage and some will even notify you when your steak (or shower) is ready via Bluetooth :) Much cheaper than laboratory immersion heaters and probably just as accurate.

This thread has me thinking further out the box for shower pan options. Hard to find small ones with conventional offerings...
 
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