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Old 17-01-2018, 05:42   #1
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Repairing SS water Tanks

Hello,

I have 3 Stainless Steel water tanks aboard that are 20yrs old and leaking. I am having the rusting bottoms removed and new bottoms welded on. The tanks seem to have a clear coating on the outside and I assume probable did have on the inside when new. Should I be applying a new food grade epoxy coating to the inside before installing?

Will this help with slowing the rust and keeping them clean or will it make things worse?

Also I want to add a sight glass to each tank so I can see how full they are. I have seen all the tank monitors and would rather have something that does not depend on electronics or complicated mechanics.
Any suggestions on how best to do this?


Thanks,

Capt Ed
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Old 17-01-2018, 06:19   #2
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Re: Repairing SS water Tanks

You could prob'ly replace them with plastic tanks for about the same cost or less than having new bottoms made for tanks that prob'ly also have pitted walls. Check out Ronco Plastics Ronco Plastics marine Tanks They make TOP quality thick-walled water and waste tanks for a very reasonable price and have more than 400 shapes and sizes, over 100 of which are non-rectangular, and they install fittings in the sizes and locations specified by the customer when they make the tank.

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Old 17-01-2018, 06:46   #3
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Re: Repairing SS water Tanks

Many plastic tanks are see thru also, negating the need for a sight gauge.
However if you want to keep your metal tanks a sight gauge is real easy, have small tubes welded top and bottom of the tank and put a piece of clear vinyl hose between them.
The clear covering may well have been Epoxy, putting a plastic coating on the metal will likely make it last much longer, the end game of that is of course not to plastic coat, but to replace with plastic.
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Old 17-01-2018, 08:11   #4
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Re: Repairing SS water Tanks

I am with Peg . If you have the floor up, put in plastic tanks !! They will last forever and make your boat sell easier when that time comes .

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Old 18-01-2018, 08:56   #5
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Re: Repairing SS water Tanks

I'd stay with S/S, plastic is just plain disgusting. I would avoid coating the inside of the stainless tanks with any epoxy, that is if it's going to be used for "potable" water. But, that's just my humble opinion. Good stainless is hard to beat.
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Old 18-01-2018, 09:40   #6
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Re: Repairing SS water Tanks

i chose to remain with the heavy stainless tankage when i experienced a noticeable difference in boats behavior while sailing. i replaced the plastic fuel tank with a larger stainless one in boats belly.
i have already had welds emergently redone, but they are still not up to leakpruf. i need to refill in a weeks time no longer daily. 49 gallons each. each used to last about 3 months. before welds failed.
they will be removed during this refit session from hell and sent to a welder i use here and redone.
i have experienced plastic water tankage and stainless.
the plastic is translucent so if there is a sun's ray on it, or any light, molds form in the water.
the change in taste of water in plastic tankage is not enjoyable by me.
plastic is not made to fit the hole in the boat from which stainless came. makes a difference in cruisers but not with dock riders or weekend/short term short distance cruising.
as i have already inspected the sheet metal, i can safely have these overhauled by my welder to last many more years. they are already 41 yrs of age.
all my stainless tanks have inspection ports and easy access.
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Old 18-01-2018, 15:58   #7
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Re: Repairing SS water Tanks

If you epoxy coat new SS bottoms before welding the epoxy will char along the seams. You would need to add access ports if needed and brush on the epoxy after the tank is repaired.
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Old 18-01-2018, 19:04   #8
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Repairing SS water Tanks

My aluminum waste tank was Epoxy coated.
I knew this cause every time I pumped it out, it looked like the waste was full of egg shells, it was of course the epoxy lining. It will be difficult to get the epoxy to Bond well to the SS.
You can remove your SS tanks and have triple M I think is their name make exact, identical copies in plastic. They made my replacement waste tank, and made it exact within millimeters of my drawing.
http://triplemplastics.us/#&panel1-2
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Old 19-01-2018, 14:24   #9
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Re: Repairing SS water Tanks

I've used <http://devconeurope.com/products/metal-filled-epoxies/devcon-stainless-steel-putty-st/> with success on my S/S water tank, pricy, but it's the best I've found. My feelings about plastic is the taste issue and yet to be determined long term health issues.
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Old 20-01-2018, 01:19   #10
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Re: Repairing SS water Tanks

I had a leak in my stainless tank also, it was very difficult to remove for repair or replacement. I was advised against in situ repair by welding due to cost and the that it was very difficult and complicated with limited possibility of success. I decided to grind around the leak area which was at a welded baffle, exposing the leak. I the put Sugru on the area, that was 2 years ago and still holding.
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