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Old 06-03-2012, 17:22   #1
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Fuel Tank Replacement

I am replacing a pair of 50 gallon diesel tanks. I have removed the sole and supports. The only thing left is the foam which has them glued in place. I used a machete on the foam to remove the refrigerator. Unfortunately the fuel tanks conform to the hull and are about 2x5 with little clearance. I am having difficulty getting a tool in to cut/break the foam.
Any suggestions?
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Old 06-03-2012, 18:05   #2
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Re: Fuel Tank Replacement

Depends on access. I'd consider using a spineless dozuki to get as much as you can reach and then just attaching a come along to the tank and seeing if it'll pop loose. It probably will, the foam doesn't stick to the tank very well. Other options might include a bandsaw blade with duct tape "handles" on either end. If you have access to both side that is. The last option would be to see if you can find a not too caustic solvent which dissolves your particular foam and pour it in. Obviously you would only want to do this if you are sure you can clean it up afterwords without getting it in the water.
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Old 06-03-2012, 20:04   #3
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Re: Fuel Tank Replacement

I had thought about the bandsaw blade, but no access - bulkhead aft and sole support that I don't want to cut out forward. I was also thinking of solvents, but not sure what to use. She is on hards, so not much issue there, but cleanup probably will still be messy. Hadn't thought of the Japanese saw which should flex along hull. And the come-along should finish it (I should have thought of that too, especially since I recently pulled the motor).
I'll let you know how well I make out in the next couple days when I get to the yard.
I really appreciate the suggestions. I'm no longer scratching my head.
Thanks much.
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Old 09-03-2012, 16:55   #4
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Re: Fuel Tank Replacement

Update: I was able to use the saw to cut a fair amount of the foam. Ten minutes to set up a 2by gantry and with a nylon strap around the filler neck the come-along popped it right out. Interestingly there was quite a bit of suction due to the foam being wet. The upper half inch or so was diesel and the rest water - the boat was yard owned for almost ten years and had filled with a couple feet of rain water before someone drilled a hole to drain.
Thanks again for the very helpful suggestions. Made for a very productive day.
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Old 09-03-2012, 19:05   #5
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Re: Fuel Tank Replacement

Glad it went smoothly. Always happy to help! And thanks for the update.
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