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Thread: Marine/RV TP?

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    Default Marine/RV TP?

    I thought I posted this question on another related thread but it seems to have disappeared now. There is much talk about packing out TP or using wet wipes instead and packing those out, and drying them out first, the hydrating and so on and so on.... I have an RV and we have to use marine or RV TP in our bathroom and I noticed that when it gets wet it literally almost disintegrates immediately. It really seemed to break down instantly. I wondered if in a cathole scenerio, it would be acceptable to put RV TP in the hole and add a little water, then bury. I know the LNT rules are screaming a resounding "NO!!", but my question is why not? Is my experience with the stuff special? Does it really not break down like it looks and feels like to me? Just curious what the consensus is.
    " Maybe life isn't about avoiding the bruises. Maybe it's about collecting the scars to prove we showed up for it."

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    Marine/RV TP would be great, better than normal TP even, buried in a cat hole in areas where cat holes are appropriate, which, frankly are most areas. LNT promotes burying TP in a 6" cat hole in most places. But, there are heavy use and dry areas where leaving TP behind is still not LNT and it needs to be carried out, if used. And then, there are a few areas where you should not even leave your poo behind.

    My understanding is that the whole purpose of Marine/RV TP is that it is extra easily broken down. But again, in high impact dry areas, that still may not be good enough.
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    So basically, if the ground is moist enough to allow for a cat hole at all, then it is appropriate to use marine TP and bury along with, correct? I guess I am just curiius why you don't hear mention of it more. It is significantly better for backpacking than regular TP.
    " Maybe life isn't about avoiding the bruises. Maybe it's about collecting the scars to prove we showed up for it."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lnj View Post
    . . . I guess I am just curiius why you don't hear mention of it more. It is significantly better for backpacking than regular TP.
    Do you really want to get into a discussion about why certain common sense personal hygiene methods are not developed in this community? For some, we're talking cultural sacred cows in this topic area. . . although, in all honesty, I've never thought about RV TP before this thread. But then, I don't care because I don't use TP.

    Now, start a thread on ultralight gear - tents, stoves, water bottles, etc - and you'll get all kinds of content development.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lnj View Post
    So basically, if the ground is moist enough to allow for a cat hole at all, then it is appropriate to use marine TP and bury along with, correct? I guess I am just curiius why you don't hear mention of it more. It is significantly better for backpacking than regular TP.
    Inexpensive Scott brand tissue seems to break down faster than other popular brands. Maybe as fast as marine grade tissues. An old buddy of mine was the chief engineer for a metropolitan waste treatment plant and some years ago (prior to wet wipes) told me that Scott seemed to be the only brand of tp that didn't give the plant problems with "clogging".
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lnj View Post
    So basically, if the ground is moist enough to allow for a cat hole at all, then it is appropriate to use marine TP and bury along with, correct? I guess I am just curiius why you don't hear mention of it more. It is significantly better for backpacking than regular TP.
    Incorrect. You can dig a cathole in packed sand/gravel, i.e. the SoCal desert. There you pack out the TP.

    I think in wetter areas, like Georgia, where people bury TP anyway, switching to RV TP would be a great help.
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    Cost, and more importantly, availability in trail towns?
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    Many Walmarts have a small RV section, usually with the sporting goods. If they have that, it'll have the RV TP. (Generally where I get mine.) 1+ on the Scott tissue; RV forum folk say it's a very close second.

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    I'm an rv'er. Seems to be more or less the general rule among the rv forums that the rv specific TP isn't necessary. Lots of TP comparison tests have been done. many of the residential types test as well or even better. As I understand it, the methods shown in this video I found are a common way to do tests for RV considerations.
    Anyway, here's a snapshot look at a few brands just to give an idea....
    https://youtu.be/-twQoVcZTaw
    My gut feel is that pretty much all of them will break down in water over a day or two
    I don't recall what I've read as the best ever, but one thing is certain some break down much easier than others.

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    I used to work for a large tissue mill. High end consumer brands are three layer sheet made on an air laid former and usually use longer virgin fibers to make them feel soft on the outer plies. They tend to be thicker and stronger so they dont break down as quickly. The commercial brands use recycled fiber from magazines and office papers and are a single layer sheet. They just package a couple of layers of single layer sheets to get some bulk. They break down quickly unless a wet strength additive is used. We used to make TP for the US military, not a lot of places made it as the quality specs were 180 degrees opposite from normal TP. They wanted hard sheets with no bulk. Drop a normal roll of TP and its like dropping a marshmallow. Drop a roll of the military stuff and it bounced like a golf ball. Its a very dense sheet which is good for packing but definitely not very soft.

    The absolute worse are the new damp varieties, some use synthetic fibers in addition cellulose fibers and most of the use wet strength which used to be latex product which doesnt break down very well.

    Scott is the best of the commercial brands but it has moved upmarket a bit, usually the best for backpacking is institutional brand TP like what someone would find in public building or low end motel chain.

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    Lnj's Avatar
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    That's what we use at home, the POM brand from Sams. No fluff. Hate fluff. Thanks for the input. I was just curious of it was worth it to swap out my little rolls backpacking TP with my RV TP. Maybe so. Thanks yall!
    " Maybe life isn't about avoiding the bruises. Maybe it's about collecting the scars to prove we showed up for it."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lnj View Post
    So basically, if the ground is moist enough to allow for a cat hole at all, then it is appropriate to use marine TP and bury along with, correct? I guess I am just curiius why you don't hear mention of it more. It is significantly better for backpacking than regular TP.
    NO! NO! NO! NO!

    Before you set off on a hiking trip, you're responsible for determining what are the rules for all the areas you will be hiking... and the rules can change along the route of a single hike.

    You'll generally find that there are three sets of rules (when privies are not near by).
    1. Bury it all (poo & tp): Generally, this is only an option if the soil is very organic (such as the moist South East).
    2. Bury poo, pack out tp: This is usually the rule where soil is dry or otherwise not very organic.
    3. Pack it all out (poo & tp): This is usually the rule where soil is very dry, the environment is very fragile, or use is extremely high (or some combination). Usually these are call WAG Bag zones (you poo into a specialty designed for this purpose).

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    Lnj's Avatar
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    I only ever hike in the southeast so far so... pretty much rule number 1 is all that applies to me. I will make a concerted effort to never... EVER hike in a WAG Bag zone at any point in my life. If I can't poo there I can't be there.
    " Maybe life isn't about avoiding the bruises. Maybe it's about collecting the scars to prove we showed up for it."

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    To further attach to my last post... If an area is so fragile and/or beaten down by hords of people that the environment can't tolerate human waste at all, then it should be closed down and protected from human presence until it has time to recover. Why would I want to go trampling all over a place so fragile? Why would anyone? In my very humble opinion, the ONLY reason for LNT practices concerning human biological waste is simply out of consideration for other humans and their right to a clean and natural experience. This is including trash, just human biological waste. Because back in the day, before privies and outhouses, this world, and woods specifically, were forced to absorb and tolerate human waste, right along with both wild and domesticated animal waste. If it would kill all plant life and wild life and destroy nature as a whole, it would have already happened a very very long time ago. I said all that to say this... The woods and earth can handle our poo but our fellow hikers should't have to.
    " Maybe life isn't about avoiding the bruises. Maybe it's about collecting the scars to prove we showed up for it."

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    CORRECTION to the above: THIS IS NOT including trash, just human biological waste.
    " Maybe life isn't about avoiding the bruises. Maybe it's about collecting the scars to prove we showed up for it."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lnj View Post
    To further attach to my last post... If an area is so fragile and/or beaten down by hords of people that the environment can't tolerate human waste at all, then it should be closed down and protected from human presence until it has time to recover. . .
    In many places we have trails, and people primarily stay on the trails, so the areas are NOT necessarily beaten down, except for when people go off trail to do their business. 1000 people could walk along a trail in a fragile area and do minimal damage. If 10% of those 1000 stopped to drop one, there would be 100 little piles of human waste. As you suggest, sure, the environment will still be there and survive the human onslaught, but the next 1000 people don't really want to see all those little piles or try and dig their own cat hole into a pile that hasn't had adequate time, in the current environment, to brake down adequately to be unnoticeable.

    And, to some people, one or another particular views are worth traipsing through horribly beaten down areas to experience.
    I'm not lost. I'm exploring.

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