Why is a Ship"s Toilet referred to as a "Head"?

A toilet ~ above a delivery is referred to as a "head", for reasons thatgo back to the work of sail.With nothing but wind power, a cruising vessel cannottravel straight into the wind.The one ar that is constantly downwind is the head orbow end.

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Yarr, the be the "front" come ye land-dwellers.To go to the head of a ship supposed to go to the areawhere the toilet is located.The wind, as viewed on the courage itself, wouldalways blow along the deck, appearing to come from behindor possibly throughout the deck if sailing at an angle tothe wind.This would carry most that the odor away.


The ax poop deck has nothing at every to carry out with this!That term comes from poupe, the French word forthe stern (rear) of a watercraft or ship.The French native poupe originates from theOld Provençal or Italian native poppe,which in turn originates from the Latin puppis.Not poop.


Originally there were just some rails approximately the base of thebowsprit the the sailor might lean versus or sit on,hanging the end over the water happen under the bow.By the beforehand 19th century this rails had evolved to aplank seat with holes, a little much more comfortablebut tho pretty crude.

Now, through various forms of engine power plus holding tanksand hands-on or powered pumps, the "head" have the right to be anywhere.But the name stuck.

Marine bathrooms on smaller vessels have to be draft differently,because the ship might be rocking from side to side,front come back, or both.Traditional toilets would pour out water from the bowl.Marine bathrooms for smaller sized vessels room designed so the bowlis maintained dry till it is used, then water is pumped intothe bowl for cleaning and also immediately pumped out.For an example, watch the French canal boats below.

Let"s look at at some heads,the toilets on plank Greek, Egyptian, American, and also Scottish ferries,and ~ above French canal boats.Plus, we"ll watch the toilet indigenous Hitler"s yacht.

French Canal Cruiser

Here is just one of the heads and also the flushing device on boarda rentedCrusader canal boat in France.


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Below is the head top top a really similaran Orionclass rented canal watercraft in France.

The Crusader was obtained from the earlierOrion design.The only differences I noticed in between the twoboat design were:

A bow thruster was added to the Crusader design.

The main helm position is designed a little differently.

The residential water it is provided is designed differently,with multiple much smaller push tanks ~ above theearlier Orion matches a solitary much largerpressure tank top top the Crusader.

The easier toilets ~ above the previously Orionworked lot better.The Orion toilets are operated through pressinga waterproofed button on the panel below the counterto pump water right into the bowl, and also stepping top top a footpedal (barely clearly shows to the ideal of the restroom base)to open up the huge flapper valve into the hold tank.For much better performance, usage the detachableshower spray nozzle.Again, the entire head compartment is the shower,see the 2nd picture listed below with the drainpipe in the floor.The Crusader heads had a complex andpoorly performing T-handle pump mechanism.


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Canal du MidiCanal Latéral à la Loire

I have taken this canal watercrafts on trips top top theCanal Latéral à la Loirebetween Briare and also Decize, and also on theCanal du Midibetween port Cassafieres and Castelnaudary.


Felix FabriorFelix Faberwas a Swiss Dominican monk who lived 1441–1502.He is known for his descriptions of his pilgramages toPalestine in 1480–1484.

He studied at Dominican abbeys at Basel and also Ulm.He spent many of his life in ~ Ulm,outside his expedition journeys.

On his pilgrimage in 1483–1484 he to be accompaniedby the Hungarian poet and also clericJános Lászai.

The adhering to translation of Felix"s summary oftoilets on board the pilgrim pearl is fromA background of personal Life, Volume II, Revelations of the middle ages World


As the poet says, "A ripe turd is one unbearable burden."<ut dicitur metrice: maturum stercus estimportabile pundus.>A couple of words top top the path of urinating and shitting on a boat.

Each pilgrim has actually near his bed a urinal—a ship of terracotta, a small bottle—into which the urinates and also vomits.But since the quarters space cramped because that the variety of people,and dark besides, and also since there is lot coming and also going,it is seldom that these vessels are not overturnedbefore dawn.Quite routinely in fact, driven by a pressing urge thatobliges that to get up, part clumsy fellow will punch overfive or six urinals in passing, giving rise come anintolerable stench.

In the morning, as soon as the pilgrims acquire up and their stomachsask because that grace, they climb the bridge and also head for the prow,where on either side of the spit privies have actually beenprovided.Sometimes as many as thirteen human being or more will line upfor a turn at the seat, and when who takes as well longit is no embarrassment but irritation the is expressed<nec est ibi verecundia sed potius iracundia>.I would compare the wait to the which people must endurewhen castle confess during Lent, once they are compelled to standand become irritated in ~ the interminable confessions andawait their revolve in a foul mood.

At night, it is a complicated business to strategy the priviesowing come the huge number of people lie or resting on thedecks indigenous one end of the galley come the other.Anyone who wants to go need to climb over much more than fortypeople, stepping on them as he goes; with every action he riskskicking a fellow passenger or fall on peak ofa sleeping body.If the bumps right into someone along the way, insults fly.Those without are afraid or vertigo have the right to climb up to the prowalong the ship"s gunwales, advertise themselves alongfrom rope come rope, which I often did regardless of therisk and also the danger.By climbing out the hatches come the oars, one canslide follow me in a sitting place from oar come oar,but this is not for the faint of heart, for straddlingthe oars is dangerous, and also even the sailors execute not choose it.

But the difficulties end up being really significant in bad weather,when the privies space constantly inundated by tide andthe oars space shipped and laid throughout the benches.To go to the chair in the middle of a storm is thusto threat being totally soaked, so that many passengersremove their clothing and also go distinguishable naked.But in this, modesty <verecundia> suffersgreatly, which just stirs the shameful <verecunda>parts even more.Those who do not wish to be checked out this means go squat inother places, which they soil, bring about tempers to flareand fights to rest out, decrediting even honorable people.Some even fill your vessels near their beds, which isdisgusting and poisons the neighbors and can be toleratedonly in invalids, who cannot it is in blamed;a few words space not enough to recount what i was forcedto endure ~ above account of a ailing bedmate.

The pilgrim must be cautious not to hold back on accountof false modesty and not relieve the stomach;to perform so is most harmful come the traveler.At sea that is simple to become constipated.Here is good advice because that the pilgrim: walk to the priviesthree or 4 times every day, also when there is nonatural urge, in bespeak to promote evacuation through discreteefforts; and also do not shed hope if nothing come on thethird or 4th try.Go often, loosen your belt, untie every the knots that yourclothes end chest and also stomach, and also evacuation will certainly occureven if her intestines space filled v stones.This advice was offered me by one old sailor as soon as when Ihad been terribly constipated for numerous days.At sea, moreover, it is not safe to usage pills orsuppositories <pilulas aut suppositoria accipere>,because to purge oneself too lot can reason worse troublethen consipation.


Larger vessels which are an ext stable have the right to use toilets whichare a little more like the land-based people we room familiarwith.But not exactly the same!They are usually kept dry or at the very least with verylittle water in castle routinely.If the vessels are just operated inrelatively patience conditions, favor the brand-new York port ferries presented below,then the toilets can be an ext or less standard soil units.


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Staten Island Ferry, brand-new York

The Staten Island Ferry, viewed above,provides free ridesfrom the reduced tip the Manhattan (New York, USA),past the Statue of Liberty and also Ellis Island,to Staten Island, and also back.

If you have to go before you board,the first picture mirrors an all-stainless-steel modelin the Manhattan terminal.

The 2nd is one of the heads on boardthe ferry itself.


So far, this is about raised commodes.If you have a squat toilet, favor theEgyptian ferryshown below, over there is no key to hold water.What would certainly be very important in that situation would it is in eithera one-way valve or one or more goosenecks adequately shaped,sized, and also oriented to avoid stored fluid fromre-entering the toilet native the warehouse tank.

Egyptian Ferry

This toilet is ~ above anEgyptian ferry on Nuweiba-Aqaba routebetweenthe SinaiandJordan.It has actually no sprayer, yet at least there"s a hose.

This is in reality pretty quite by Egyptian publicly toiletstandards.And I have to emphasize that it"s rustyou watch there!

This is indigenous a pilgrimage fromCairotoİstanbulthroughEgypt,Jordan,SyriaandTurkey.


The toilet chin is just one ingredient of what U.S.regulations contact the MSD or marine Sanitation Device.The important details are in the stop tank and also whateverprocessing is done before the garbage is pumped overboard,possibly discharged out right into the water.If the waste isn"t pumped overboard, the is save on computer in theholding tank until the boat returns to the dockand the holding tank is pumped ashore for treatment.The MSDs space classified as form I, form II, and form III.

A form I MSD must completely liquefy solids and also paper,while reduce the bacteria counting to less than 1,000 per100 milliliters.It"s a liquid, however it"s very dirty.A form II MSD must alleviate the bacteria count to less than200 per 100 milliliters, and additionally have less than 1,000particles of exposed particulate issue per 100 milliliters.The resulting fluid is almost totally clear,although tho colored.Types I and II would certainly then discharge the result liquidout right into the bordering water, pumping it out with anopening referred to as a seacock.A kind III MSD is a hold tank.Unlike the species I and II, a kind III does no dischargeany liquid into the water.It holds all waste till it have the right to be pumped ashore fortreatment.


Vessels up with 65 feet in size may use any of thesethree types.Vessels bigger than 65 feet should use either a type IIor form III.In other words, a bigger vessel, with an ext people on boardand thus an ext sewage, and with a larger as whole budget,must get its waste lot cleaner prior to pumping that overboard.Smaller vessels, v fewer people and also less waste, areallowed to be lot dirtier yet at their smaller scale.A type II MSD much larger, expensive, and also power-hungrythan a type I, and so kind II MSDs are usually found onlyon larger vessels.A kind III MSD have the right to be fairly simple, and also is likely the bestchoice as lengthy it can be big enough because that the plannedtime away from a pump-out facility.

So, if you"re going to be far from the dock because that a longtime top top a big vessel, you will require the expensive form II.You will be in ~ sea too long to save it every in a holding tank,but it"s a larger class of courage with an ext people ~ above boardand for this reason you should discharge cleaner material.Of course, if you have the right to afford to buy a large yacht and also goon prolonged trips, the addition cost of a form II MSD isjust a fairly small part.On today"s yachts girlfriend would watch hightech,lavish restrooms.If you to be to watch atHatteras yachts because that saleyou would certainly be amazed at theinteriorsof your bathrooms.

The must make waste pumpable (Type I) and also fullyliquified (Type II) is why it"s vital that youput nothing under a naval toilet excepthuman waste and special marine-use toilet paper.That toilet document breaks down completely.A macerator is one electrically pushed devicethat liquifies the waste, lot like a kitchen blender.

You deserve to probably see why over there is a difference betweenseptic waste and also grey water.Septic waste from the bathrooms only, handled by the MSD,versus grey water indigenous showers and sinks.You don"t desire to macerate or keep any more than you have to.However, in some locations such together the an excellent Lakes between theU.S. And also Canada, you need to hold grey water ~ above board.


Greek Ferry

Travel by Greek Ferry

The bigger Greek ferries have actually multiple passenger decks abovevehicle decks size to lug trucks.This scenic head is on board the F/B ArtemisGreek ferry en path fromIostoSantoriniin the Aegean.It"s no in the bow, it"s looking the end to the side fromone of the upper decks.


The Artemis is the smallestconventional ferry that the Hellenic Seaways line.89.9 meter long, 14 meter beam, delivering up to1,250 passengers and 74 cars at a speed of 18 knots.

That sounds big to me, but the same company operatesthe Nissos Mykonos and Nissos Chiosat nine times the gross tonnage each, 141 meters long,21 meter beam, and 1,915 passengers and 418 cars,running at 28 knots.

The conventional ferries are good ways totravel between Greek islands.They have big open decks and good views.The high-speed ferries obtain you there faster yet youcan"t see as much along the way.

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Even the typical ones make fast port stops.They drop the rear ramp, drive any cars and trucks offand on, and load passengers off and on.Some have actually a single wide ramp and passengers wait forthe vehicles or vice-versa, others have a 2nd narrowramp just for passengers.And, the course, at tiny islands there might be no vehiclesgetting top top or off.In those situations the ramp may only it is in on the pier because that sevenminutes or less.