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Many Sun-Mar users have cabins without built-in bathrooms, and so these owners have chosen to retrofit an old outhouse or build a special outbuilding to house their Sun-Mar units, rather than building an addition to their main cabin or cottage.  We thought you might like to read about their experiences and see some of the photos of their installations.
Models: Excel NE Installed 1999
Location: Installed at vacation property in WI
Reviewed By: Elizabeth Vis

Dear Sirs:
We purchased the ExcelNE in March of 1999. We have installed it in an outdoor style outhouse. We do a lot of camping at our property and got sick of carrying a port-a-potty back with us to be disposed of, which is a smelly chore. We could have put in a real outdoor style toilet but did not want the constant smell that is associated with outdoor toilets. With the SunMar we can enjoy a smell free process and the compost is recycled to the surrounding woods without worry of smell or contamination of the environment.

There is little maintenance involved. In the spring, we add moisture, compost and microbe mix to begin the season. We have been very happy with our composting toilet.

Composting toilet review of Sun-Mar Excel NE installed at a vacation property in WI

Models: Excel NE Installed 2000
Location: Installed at cabin in Cecilville, CA
Reviewed By: Joe Dougherty

A breeze to install/set-up. Absolutely odor free! Everyone loves it. Occasional use, sometimes heavy (6+ people). Only had to empty it once so far - second year of use.

Composting toilet review of a Sun-Mar Excel NE installed at a cabin in Cecilville, CA

Models: Excel NE Installed 2000
Location: Installed at cottage in St. Louis County, MN
Reviewed By: Philip Rodberg

Very much appreciate unit after many years of the typical "Out House". The unit is very simple to use and we have only unloaded the compost one time in 3 summers of use.

Composting toilet review of a Sun-Mar Excel NE installed at cottage in St. Louis County, MN

Model: WCM Installed 1994, Excel 2002
Location: Island Camp in ME
Reviewed By: Deborah Bigelow

In 1994 we purchased a Sun-Mar WCM for our island camp in eastern Maine which has been happily established and composting since then. That model we installed in a small outbuilding, and is pictured in the two photos.

Since we were so pleased with that one, and feeling we needed to provide additional toilet facilities for larger groups visiting, we have installed this summer a new Sun-Mar Excel. This self-contained unit has gone into another small cabin adjoining a kitchen and bedroom. With your new advice and the new peat mix and "Compost Quick", we are getting the unit going.

We have been glad for the new information on the mix, and are now adding pine shavings (not cedar). We had tried buckwheat shells last year also, which were quite expensive. We would be glad to be on your "referral list" as we are definitely pleased with your products. Previously we had a "two holer" of the old-fashioned variety. Our friends and family are glad we've moved up.

Composting toilet review of a Sun-Mar Excel installed at an island camp in ME

Models: Excel NE Installed 1995
Location: Installed in cabin in OR
Reviewed By: Norman Poole

I will share my experience with one of your composting toilets (Excel-NE).

We love it. I have a remote cabin on the Owyhee Lake in the Eastern Oregon desert country where there is no electricity or running water except what I pump out of the lake. My wife and I built it in 1972, and also built an outhouse. In 1995 I added a 8' by 8' bathroom on the back of the cabin and installed the composting toilet and a shower stall.

With the outhouse my two daughters-in-law and my wife seldom went to the cabin, as they didn't really like the toilet facility. Now they all love to go to the cabin, as the composting toilet is just as nice as their own home plumbing. The bathroom is odorless, clean, and shiny looking, and they actually enjoy the novelty of such a neat facility. When adding the new bathroom, I also installed a Solar collector, 12 volt lights, a water pressure demand pump, a hot water heater(propane), and the new shower. I have to say the new little room on the back of my cabin with the Sun-Mar composting toilet made a big hit and we can't believe we got by without it for so long. Pictures follow. That is me standing on the deck at the entrance to the bathroom.
Composting toilet review of a Sun-Mar Excel NE installed in cabin in OR

Models: Excel NE Installed 2000
Location: Installed at cabin in ON
Reviewed By: Geoff Johnson

We would like you to consider the attached picture of what has been dubbed the Superloo for use on your Web site. The compost toilet replaced Ye Olde Outhouse at our weekend cottage at the beginning of the summer, and has attracted so much interest we considered setting up turnstiles and charging for a guided tour! Once we had learned how to achieve the correct moisture level (a matter of trial and error) the system has performed very well. For the most part there are only two or three of us at the cottage but we have had groups of as many as eight on long weekends. I was relieved (nice choice of word!) to find that the system coped very well. In fact, we have been surprised at the bulk -- or lack of it -- so far. Any one considering a composting toilet needs to understand that that it requires a little nurturing. In return, it pays great dividends. And it sure beats Ye Olde Outhouse. We look forward to a place in the Toilet Hall of Fame...

(picture shows my wife Maureen showing off the composting toilet in its palatial home at our cottage, located in whitewater rafting country near Beachburg, Ontario, 100 miles west of Ottawa. We live just outside Ottawa, in the village of Manotick.)

Composting toilet review of a Sun-Mar Excel NE installed at cabin in ON

Model: Compact, Installed 1998
Location: Installed in cottage in Minden, ON
Reviewed By: Jean Pinch

Letter from Jean Pinch, July 7 1999:

We purchased the Sun-Mar Compact composting toilet in July 1998. Followed your instructions for leaving it for the winter, leaving here in September, 1998. Upon our return to Little Hawk Lake, we followed the instructions to re-activate the Compact.

I am the sole occupant of our cottage - with several guests during the summer - and it is doing a good job.

I am enclosing pictures of our "Sun-Mar Room", a separate room from our cottage, that is used only in the summer season.

-Jean Pinch
Composting toilet review of a Sun-Mar Compact installed in cottage in Minden, ON

Model: Compact, Installed 2000
Location: Installed in cabin in Blairmore, Alberta, Canada
Reviewed By: Marie & Bob Frantz

We bought a Sun-Mar Compact in May of 2000 when we began to build a new home in a small town located over 100 miles away from where we are currently living. This house is by and large a weekend project for us.

We quickly realized it would be a problem to have to use our limited time at the building site driving to a public restroom or disturbing the neighbors to use their bathrooms. So we built a very small camping shed (8 ft. by 8 ft.) and installed the Sun-Mar in one corner of it. Problem solved!

The bed in our camping shed is only 2 feet away from the Sun-Mar which is situated behind a partial wooden partition. We were a bit concerned at first that there might be an odor problem but there has never been so much as a whiff out of our Sun-Mar. Also it operates so quietly that we are barely aware of it -- very much appreciated after a hard day of sawing and nailing. We can honestly say that the only time we were disturbed by an odor was the night a skunk decided to rummage around underneath the camping shed. Ugh!
Sorry we can't send you a photo of our Sun-Mar but as you can see from the photo taken outside our camping shed, there just isn't enough room in there to get a good shot of it.

You'll have to take our word for it that it's sitting there quiet and odor-free, just inside the door to the left.
We're still trying to decide whether to move the Sun-Mar into the house when it's completed or leave it where it is so we can offer overnight guests a rather unique accommodation. (The camping shed is warm and cozy and will look pretty good when we finally put the siding on it.)

Marie and Bob Frantz

Composting toilet review of a Sun-Mar Compact installed in cabin in Blairmore, Alberta, Canada

Models: Excel NE Installed 1999
Location: Installed on Orchard Island, near Pointe at Baril, ON
Reviewed By: Ken Kennedy

As we are on a rocky island, 7 miles from the marina, we were looking at about a $20,000 bill to install an approved septic system. I met Sun-Mar at the Cottage Life show and signed up for the Show Special. As hydro has not invaded our island yet, we chose the NE model. We installed it in a purpose-built building.

That year, the cottage was very well used and we found that Sun-Mar's recommended capacity was accurate. So, the next year we bought a second NE and installed it in an edifice liberated from the construction site of a cottage being converted to year round. Our installations cost a fraction of a conventional system and produces excellent compost for our small flower garden.

The Sun-Mar staff have always answered queries in a prompt and useful manner.

Composting toilet review of a Sun-Mar Excel NE installed on Orchard Island, near Pointe at Baril, ON

Models: Excel NE Installed 2000
Location: Installed at cottage in Tobermory, ON
Reviewed By: Phil McNamee

Our Sun-Mar toilet works great. We have a log cabin that is the woods with no water or hydro. Therefore with no power we needed the Excel-NE and for 4 summers now it has worked great with no problems. We have even had 16 people up on a weekend with no problems.

Composting toilet review of a Sun-Mar Excel NE installed at cottage in Tobermory, ON

Models: Excel, Installed 2003 - Centrex 2000, Installed 2000
Location: Cottage, East of Parry Sound, Ontario
Reviewed By:
Jacquelyn Morgan

Dear Friends:

Indeed, we do think of you as friends for your creative marketing style, your superb product and personable sales staff.

Our cottage is water access only and we only obtained electricity during the past decade. We had propane, an outhouse and water carried by bucket or hand-pumped from the lake. With electrical power extended to our remote location, we were above, in June 2000, to add an indoor bathroom. We installed a Sun-Mar Centrex 2000, with which we are delighted. (Caution - teach small children that this toilet is not like the ones in the city ---- our grandson flooded the unit by keeping his foot on the pedal waiting for it to fill up!)

The Centrex is wonderful from Victoria Day weekend to perhaps Thanksgiving. But, since we are northeast of Parry Sound, plumbing cannot be used before ice-out or after freeze-up. So-o-o-o in May 2003, we built a beautiful little building to house the Sun-Mar Excel, a waterfree electric model, for use in April, May, October, and November.
When greeting cottage visitors, most owners say something like, "Come see my new boat" or "Come see my new deck". We say, "Come see the new outhouse!". And it is truly lovely, all insulated and paneled in pine. It boasts a "Dutch" door to view the lake, a handy shelf for the coffee mug and a magazine rack for "Cottage Life" and "Canadian Geographic". It truly does not smell. It is easy to keep clean and fresh. In summer, it is used daily to ease the pressure on the Centrex when there are lots of folks about.

We are very concerned about the environment and endeavor to make minimum impact on our pristine lake and forest. Our choice of Sun-Mar installations is consistent with this goal.
We can hardly wait to be featured in the next Sun-Mar brochure! We are enclosing photos of our toilet(s) complete with a "scratch 'n sniff" option (to duplicate the effect of the scratch and sniff area of the Morgan's photograph, smell your computer monitor screen - don't scratch it though - that will be what a Sun-Mar smells like - Ed.).

You can be assured that we invite all visitors to view our toilets. If they are interested, we eagerly give them the honest poop on Sun-Mar composting toilets.

Composting toilet review of a Sun-Mar Excel installed in a cottage east of Parry Sound, ON

Models: Excel
Location: Installed at Cabin on Powell Lake, ON
Reviewed By:
Colin & Jody Eldridge

Hi, Just thought I would like to show you what a great product you have. Our cottage on Crowe Lake in Marmora Ontario sits on a rock cliff that makes it impossible to have anything other than a holding tank.

We chose Sun-Mar because we loved the concept and it beats having an above ground tank by a mile.

We selected another Canadian product from Royal Outdoor Products (Hampton garden shed) as our outhouse.
We wanted to keep the cottage tradition of years ago by having an outdoor toilet. This is our third year and I find it to be a fantastic combination. The window and skylights also give it a bright and airy feeling.

Composting toilet review of a Sun-Mar Excel installed at Cabin on Powell Lake, ON

Model: Excel, Installed 1997
Location: Installed in Cottage in Apsey Lake, Espanola, ON
Reviewed By: John Petko

People are always surprised when they enter what they expect to be an ordinary outhouse and find a clean toilet with "no odor!". And also to learn how easy it is to manage. We have found the new Compost Sure to work much better.

(ed. - Compost Sure is Sun-Mar's special peat mix with Hemp!)
Composting toilet review of a Sun-Mar Excel installed in Cottage in Apsey Lake, Espanola, ON