Shower / Toilet Unit - aka The Pod.

How much are these lovely plastic cabinets?

It would have been okay if I had the vertical space to fit them as originally designed by the manufacturer. As they would not fit I had to sit back and work out how I could make the best use of them.

With the use of a circular saw bench, lets lop off some spare bits and take another look. 

That looks clean enough.

By time I had thought about some more photos, I had already removed about a foot off the bottom of this bit of the cabinet.

If your not familiar with it, its the wall unit which holds a drop down sink. These cabinets are all designed the same width as the Thetford cassette toilet unit.

Another view from the back.

Just to give you an idea of how they will join together.

A bit of imagination is required with this photo. Basically shows the Thetford cassette toilet at the bottom, drop down sink above, then the cabinet with sliding mirror doors above.

A view of the Toilet/Shower pod with the side cutout ready to accept the drop down sink and cabinet shown earlier.

More broomsticks to hold the sink in place while the glue sets.

Sink and cabinet now in place, and pipework connected.

What wasn't shown in the earlier photos was the catch tank for the tip up sink, which is fitted behind the wall panel. Basically you lift the sink up to empty it in to the catch tank, then the water drains away as normal.

A lot of the projects for the van were first designed using AutoCAD, then modified slightly as each bit was built. The AutoCAD was very useful when the front seating was designed, it would have taken ages to work out all the swing angles and arm lengths by trial and error. The above drawing was just a basic outline drawing I used when sorting the Thetford toilet and shower tray.

The shower/toilet pod had a mild steel base with a 50mm gap at the bottom to allow the fork of the forktruck to get under the pod to lift it out, plus it allowed a drain to be fitted in the bottom of the shower tray. The walls were constructed from 12mm plywood which had been coated with a white fibreglass. Its a special sheeting which is used by commercial vehicle builders to build artic trailer units. The size of sheeting is about 8 foot by 40 foot, basically the full length and height of an artic trailer unit. I did investigate many other types of boarding as normally supplied by builders merchants, but was advised prolonged damp conditions will eventually soak through most 'conti' type boarding, hence the fibreglassed boards.

To assemble the pod I used a selection of aluminium profiles as in the following photo.

Using the above aluminium profiles, I found not everything will do as it says on the can!

I started gluing the sections on to the boards using Screwfix's 'No more nails', but ran out, so continued used another 'no more nails' type glue from a 'top' name supplier. Over a week later I was doing some work inside the new pod and banged the side, only to discover it can adrift from the aluminium profile!. Further investigation found none of the profiles had stuck using the 'top brand' glue. I had to strip the whole pod down, scrape off the glue and start again. The only side I couldn't get apart was the one I had used the Screwfix glue on. Not taking any more risks, I reassembled the pod using the Screwfix glue together with screw.

Following my disastrous experience with the 'no more nails' type glues, I stuck a load of bits of wood on to a plank using the various glues I had around the workshop and found standard silicone sealer was stronger the the 'top brand' name glue. You have been warned.

A shot into the pod (from above to the base). Shows the wooden frame for the Thetford toilet, hole in the floor for the shower tray outlet and some of the pipework which will be hidden by the shower tray.

Another view of the pod base.

Shower tray in position.

This is the top of the pod. The final 'lid' was a lot shallower. Basically to remove the pod from the van, the top has to be removed to allow clearance, as the tops of the van doors are about five inches lower than the internal van roof. To maximise the height of the pod, an extension is put on the pod to give another five inches or so head room in the pod.

Top of the pod with no top or door.

Part of the Thetford cassette toilet base. Just needs more bits chopping off!

Base bits chopped off, so easy.

The bit I chopped off has been very useful around the workshop for screws spanner and things!

Back of the pod, showing where the cassette fits in to the Thetford toilet, and the hot and cold pipework connections for the sink and shower.

No... the kettle is NOT for making tea. It's useful in the workshop for warming up ends of pipe etc. before pushing them on to spigots and things.

When the pod has been removed from the van, it sits on the trolley above to make it easier to push into a corner of the workshop.


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