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Old 13-04-2006, 16:02   #46
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What I meant was that my simple problem was over-diagnosed from the beginning, and the thread quickly morphed into a discussion that largely forgot the specifics of my simple little situation. Posters seemed more interested in impressing each other with their knowledge than being helpful to me (with notable exceptions).

While that was happening, I was busy cleaning my tank.

Fingers are crossed…

s/y Elizabeth— Catalina 34 MkII
"Man must have just enough faith in himself to have adventures, and just enough doubt of himself to enjoy them." — G. K. Chesterfield
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Old 20-04-2006, 12:36   #47

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Jeff, we cleaned out a 20-gallon aluminum tank (thought it was stainless, but white residue in some spots outside said "aluminum oxide" to me) last year. No one would pressure wash it, afraid of EPA problems from the residual fuel. We used liquid Tide (which is fine stuff, even removes old Cosmoline) and hot water. Turned out there was very little "crud" in the tank but now we KNOW there is none.

A geology prof taught me that if you need to scrub out crud, a good way is to use a box of coarse koshering salt or de-icing salt. It is sharp and abrasive, dissolves slowly in water, doesn't dissolve in fuel, so you can shake it around in the tank with some FUEL and it will act as an abrasive. Then, a water-wash dissolves it all and ensures there is no abrasive left in the tank. Neat trick!

All the slops went in the "waste oil" collection bin, that gets recycled anyway, water and all.

Like most boat projects the CLEANING was the easy part. Hauling the tank out and replacing it...each twice as long.<G>

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Old 27-04-2006, 14:42   #48
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Wow. Great idea with the salt. I'll have to keep that in my bag of tricks. I'm amazed at how many good ideas are aired on this BB.

Fair Winds,


Between us there was, as I have already said somewhere, the bond of the sea. Besides holding our hearts together through long periods of separation, it had the effect of making us tolerant of each other's yarns -- and even convictions. Heart of Darkness
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engine flushing, fuel, fuel tank

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