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Old 22-04-2011, 18:40   #1
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Jerry Cans on Deck

I have a 38' Easterly that I will soon be leaving on for approx 10 day cruise (Houston - Key West) I was going to secure 4 5 gallon jerry cans of diesel evenly divided on the foredeck but it has been suggested that this much extra weight (about 160 lbs) will very adversely effect handling as well as leading to other potential problems.

I only have a 50 gallon tank and with these strong winds on the nose at this time of year, I fear that I may be motoring more than I would like and therefore, need more fuel

Opinions please - good idea or bad to secure cans on deck?
Thank you
Gary Fritts
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Old 22-04-2011, 18:53   #2
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

I fasren a board to the shrouds just above the toerail and then tied the jerry cans to the boards, on each side. I used four for fuel and two for water.
Worked great
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Old 22-04-2011, 18:53   #3
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

Mousant:

You asked for an opinion, and I have one. If you're going to have jerry jugs on deck, they're best stored amidships. At the shrouds or just aft. The danger is taking on green water in the open ocean. It's amazing how much force water can put on the stantions and lifelines the jugs are tied to. If you don't anticipate such conditions, putting a few jerry jugs on deck for the passage shouldn't be a problem.

I suggest transferring the fuel to the main tanks as soon as there's room.

My 2 cents.
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Old 22-04-2011, 19:01   #4
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

Tie a board between stanchions abeam the mast. Tie the jugs to this.

The strong winds on the nose can be changed to a beat using the rudder Sail the boat. Skip the extra fuel. Looks like ideal sailing weather on my forecast, 10-20, reachy.
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Old 22-04-2011, 19:25   #5
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

Tie them down more or less at the shrouds. Transfer the fuel as soon as there is space and a calm moment. It is darn difficult in rough going.

In light winds I tie all of ours on the lee side. In strong winds I split 50/50.

b.
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Old 22-04-2011, 19:32   #6
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

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Originally Posted by daddle View Post
Tie a board between stanchions abeam the mast. Tie the jugs to this.
+ 1 on that.

I think jerry cans on the side decks are cool. But they should never be used as an excuse to motor when you really ought to be sailing.
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Old 22-04-2011, 19:34   #7
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

Midships is good. Picture shows fuel jugs lashed to boards between shrouds on each side that went to Mexico and back with us. For just a couple of jugs on each side, lash them either side of a stanchion near midships. If you don't have a slotted toerail, eyestraps need to be attached to the rail to keep the jugs from sliding around.
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Old 22-04-2011, 20:46   #8
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

In my opinion, the problem with using Jerry Cans as deck cargo is that they often become a regular fixture.

UV and weather causes them to fail over time and puts additional stresses on deck fittings…(just when you don’t need them in heavy weather)

If I needed the extra fuel range, I would seriously look at keeping a couple of empty Jerry Cans stored below decks for transport purposes and find a place in the bilge to install a fuel bladder with a transfer pump to main tank.

Weight is then low, decks are clear and access is still available for maintenance
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Old 22-04-2011, 20:57   #9
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

Even amidships they can take a real beating from the seas. On one trip I had two or three per side, lashed to boards that were attached to the stanchions. We spent a couple of days beating into heavy seas (12-15 ft, 20-30 kt winds), and one of the boards snapped. In retrospect the boards were really too light, and better the boards break than the stanchions, but don't underestimate the force of green water. Redundant lashings are a good idea.

I've sailed with people who carry extra diesel cans lashed to padeyes in the cockpit. You probably can't get more secure than that, and the weight is in a good place.

Here's a shot of us leaving Hawaii for San Francisco, with six jerry cans on the windward rail. We didn't use any of them:
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Old 22-04-2011, 21:01   #10
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

Balance the placement of Jerry Cans on both sides leaving room to travel to the foredeck when needed.

When time to refuel, I use a typical outboard fuel hose with the squeeze ball, insert the hose into the JC, the other end well into the deck fill and squeeze the ball. Never spill a drop and safe in any sea condition.
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Old 22-04-2011, 21:06   #11
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

Excellent comments so far, amidships is probably going to work out better for you then the foredeck...

... the only thing I would add to this discussion is that you should make sure to secure the jugs around the base as well as from the top. Like many others here I have thousands of miles with jerry jugs on the rail... it never fails that IF they are going to shift (and they likely will) it will be on a dark and stormy night... when you will wish that you had secured them better.
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Old 22-04-2011, 21:14   #12
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

I'm going to be adding pad eyes with backing plates along my cockpit for the tether to strap in, has anyone strapped the fuel jugs down to the cockpit sole forward of the steering pedestal? A benefit would be a reduction of cockpit volume incase you get pooped and taking the jugs off the deck and getting them a bit lower. My wife and I always use the seats to get back to the helm anyway.


Edit... I see Paul beat me too it.
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Old 22-04-2011, 21:44   #13
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

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Originally Posted by funjohnson View Post
I has anyone strapped the fuel jugs down to the cockpit sole forward of the steering pedestal? A benefit would be a reduction of cockpit volume incase you get pooped and taking the jugs off the deck and getting them a bit lower.

.
Well, you do reduce the cockpit volume, but with a filler that is nearly the same density as the water would be, so there is little advantage there.

Realistically, a few cans of fuel on deck won't disturb your righting moment or pitching moment all that much, but are not really a great idea for going to sea. In any serious weather you will wish they were not there, and perhaps they soon won't be!

But really, it would seem that without them you have fuel for at least 50+ hours of motoring... ain't that enough??

Good luck anyway with your passage... I hope that you don't use ANY fuel!

Cheers,
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Old 22-04-2011, 23:55   #14
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pelagic View Post
In my opinion, the problem with using Jerry Cans as deck cargo is that they often become a regular fixture.

UV and weather causes them to fail over time and puts additional stresses on deck fittings…(just when you don’t need them in heavy weather)

If I needed the extra fuel range, I would seriously look at keeping a couple of empty Jerry Cans stored below decks for transport purposes and find a place in the bilge to install a fuel bladder with a transfer pump to main tank.

Weight is then low, decks are clear and access is still available for maintenance
Ditto on that! http://www.atlinc.com/marine.html
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Old 23-04-2011, 01:58   #15
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Re: Jerry Cans on Deck?

I don't carry jugs on deck...I have as little as absolutely possible on deck, so any white water that hits goes straight over and doesn't take anything with it.
If you're at sea and you get hit with a big wave the force on those jugs and fenderboards transmitted to your stanchions and lifelines could rip them out...dangerous..
Apart from that its a lot of weight to be carrying above your COB/COG which adversely affects the boats stability...if you must carry all that extra weight carry it down low.
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