Monday, June 25, 2012

The Royal Throne

A few weeks ago when I was camping at Pine Grove Furnace I noticed that the toilet seat was sliding all over the place!  I investigated and discovered that the nut had come off one of the bolts that holds it on.  Not only had the nut come off, the nut had vanished.  hmmmm…  I had no idea where it could have gone – the bathroom isn’t that big and I would have seen it.  I thought maybe it had never been there in the 1st place. 

My dad suggested that I take the other nut and go to Lowe’s and see if I could find a nut that would fit.  So today I headed over to the RV to get the nut and work on fixing the toilet seat. 

When I got to the RV I realized that not only was it not very hot, it was overcast and kinda rainy so it was cool and comfortable!  Even in the RV that had been closed up for 2 weeks!  I figured it would be hotter enough to fry eggs inside the RV the days I decided to do chores!

I went into the bathroom and unscrewed the nut. This of course involved attempting to bend my arm in a direction my wrist didn’t want to go.  I think I need a 3rd joint in between my wrist and my elbow for RV chores.  I had it almost off when I dropped it.  And it vanished.  One second I’d had it in my hand and the next  it was gone.  The washer was on the floor but the nut was gone.  Seriously?  Where’d it go?  I was baffled.  I got down on my hands and knees and crawled around looking under the toilet.  No nut.  I put my hand behind the toilet and discovered that there’s a “hidey hole” in the toilet – it’s not entirely solid between the outside and the bowl.  You can put your hand in and feel the unfinished side of the porcelain!  It’s very hard to describe, but I bet it’s designed that way to save weight.   I’m 99.9% sure that that’s where the other nut went.  It only makes sense.

I stuck my hand, as best as I could contort it, into the hidey hole and found one of the nuts!  A few more minutes of contorting myself and standing on my head on the toilet to get my hand into the hole and I had extracted a nut! I was excited thinking I might be able to get other nut out too and avoid the trip to Lowe’s.  The only problem was that there’s a conduit for one of the holding tank vents in the corner of the bathroom and try as I might I couldn’t get my arm in the hidey hole on the other side.  I looked at how the toilet was screwed to the floor – thinking all I’d need to do was tip it a little and the nut would roll out, but that wasn’t going to work so, I decided I needed something long and bendy, yet solid, to stick in there.  I thought for a minute and then remembered that I had some twist tie things that were exactly what I needed.  I also realized I could cover the end with some duct tape – sticky side out – in hopes of snagging the nut on the duct tape and extracting it.  I fished around in there for a few minutes and didn’t come with anything or feel like I’d come close so I gave up and went to Lowe’s.

I quickly located the part I needed at Lowe’s – they even had an open package that I could use to compare the nut I had to the nut I was purchasing.  They claimed to be “universal” but I was afraid that household universal and RV universal would be 2 different things.  They are not!  I got 2 different types – one with washers and one without and for less than $5 I was on my way back to the RV. 

Back at the RV I put the toilet seat back on and went to screw the nuts on.  I was being very careful not to drop the nut because I now knew it would vanish!  It took a lot more contorting and standing on my head and straddling the bowl, and wedging myself onto the floor in the bathroom to get both nuts screwed on, but I did it!  The toilet seat is now securely attached to the toilet and I have some spare parts in case it comes loose again! 

The royal throne is ready for use! :-)

1 comment:

  1. Way to go Melissa! Love reading your blog. If I ever am over in your neck of the woods this summer I will look you up. I know this is going to post as anonymous and it's not...but I don't know what I should pick in the "comment as" drop down menu!
    Denise McGovern