Part 1 of our fascinating story gave you a quick overview of the Incinolet brand incinerator toilet and the fine people that bring this advanced technology to a grateful world. But the photos in Part 1 were only what the manufacturer wanted you to see. In Part 2, we take a look behind the closed loo door to see a real, live incinerating toilet as it really is. Small children and people with pacemakers should stop reading now.
Shiny, shiny. Shiny piece of metal.
Hot flash, quick fried, in the dark.
[with apologies to The Velvet Underground]
This is a rather evocative logo. Is the message it's trying to convey
"15,000 hillbillys die each year from being struck by lightning while using an outhouse"
"Be careful with the wiring on this thing, because if you haven't noticed already, we carefully designed the exterior of the toilet to function as an excellent conductor of electricity"?
Side note to those of a litigious bent - I have never, not even once, felt a tingly sensation while using the incinerating toilet. Well, other than the general excitement that one naturally gets when coming so closely in contact with technology that surely ranks up there with freeze dried ice cream as one of the many life changing innovations for which we can thank the Apollo space program. Okay, I made that up.
As you approach the stainless steel throne, this is the awesome sight that lies before you. Well, maybe if you're a foot and a half tall. The seat level on this toilet actually is a little bit higher than your average toilet, though.
Note the copper rod in the back right of the photograph. The melting temperature of copper is almost 2000 degrees F. This is called foreshadowing.
Another important feature to note above is the lever sticking out to the right near the bottom of the toilet. This activates the trap door which provides access to the incineration compartment. The lever is shielded by a slanted metal plate so you don't accidentally open the steel doors before you are ready to deploy a payload.
As you now tower over the toilet, you see another key part of the intricate operating controls. When it comes time to pay the toilet a visit, the first thing you want to do is press the Start button, which does two very important things.
- Begins to heat the incinerator compartment
- Starts the ventilation fan
If for some reason you don't hear the humming sounds that indicate numbers 1 and 2 have commenced successfully, you probably want to stop right there and rethink your plans. The official instructions tell you not to press the Start button until you have deployed your payload. But, hey, I'll gladly trade off a reduction in odor for the slightly increased danger of sitting on a metal toilet while it heats up internally to 1200 degrees F.
Now, it's time to lift the lid and insert a bowl liner, just like the instructions on the inside of the top lid call out to you.
Since it is quite possible that small children and dim witted, yet overly sensitive, heads of recording industry associations may have continued to read this shocking tale of wonder and woe, I decided not to photograph an actual inicineration event, whether it involved fecal matter or a Kenny G CD. Maybe later. Check back for updates. For now, just gaze into the entrance to Hades and try to imagine what kind of hellfire and brimstone must be employed down there. Whatever, you do, don't scroll down all the way to the bottom of this page just yet.
While taking this photo, I was standing on the aforementioned lever to keep the steel doors open. If this had been a real visit to the incinerator toilet, I would have followed up the standard deposit and self cleaning process by stepping on this same lever. The now weighted down bowl liner would be overcome by the force of gravity and plummet into the maw of the incineration compartment, which doubles as an ash pan.
At this point you're probably wondering, just what would happen if a non-human by-product were to go through the trap door during a burn cycle? And what about the foreshadowing that you so clumsily offered up earlier? What was up with that copper rod?
Well, the scientific research staff at the cabin have conducted this experiment for you. Unintentionally, I might add. The copper rod you saw in the photo above is known as "Copper Rod Number 2". Copper rod number 1 was much shorter and came equipped with several metal attachments of questionable utility. We don't know what type of metal those attachments were made of, but we can assure you that they were one or more of the types that melt at temperatures below 1200 degrees F (that's about 650 degrees Celsius for most of you on the planet). I'm thinking tin was involved.
The purpose of the rod is to ensure that the bowl liner drops completely through the steel doors. If not, you poke the paper with the rod until it does. In this particular incident, one of our researchers was trying to jam a pesky liner through the doors. When our researcher stepped on the lever to aid the process, the flames that were consuming the bottom part of the bowl liner raced upwards. In a snap decision of selfishly choosing hand safety over tool protection, our researcher promptly released the rod. The rod vanished into Hades and the steel doors slammed shut. Four hours later, a HazMat team retrieved the remains of the rod and its former metal attachments. Learning from this experience, we constructed "Copper Rod Number 2" from a much longer length of copper rod and without any frivolous attachments of unknown composition.
Sure, this is all quite interesting, but by now you must be wondering what does it look like when you peek in on the incinerating toilet in action? At the risk of certain gagging and coughing from the inhalation of toxic fumes, I have endeavored to bring you the insider's view of the mighty cauldron that rages within the Incinolet brand incinerating toilet. As my wife ignored me safely from the living room, I managed to capture this rare photo. And, yes, that is a genuine, authentic, antique (maybe) chamber pot next to the throne of fire. It's expensive to incinerate urine.