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Old 12-04-2009, 20:30   #1
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Our Refit Begins! Step 1 Integral fuel tanks

After too much wasted time and false starts we are finally on the hard and beginning the extensive refit of our steel Roberts 65 cutter. She's fin keel, skegged rudder and twin diesel propulsion.

Once the old Nisan 33's are removed in preparation of installing new Yanmar 4JH4-TE's we will remove the 8, 50 gallon fuel tanks which are mounted on angle iron racks just under the cabin sole. I don't like these tanks for the following reason: They are mounted high, thus we are carrying a lot of weight almost 3' higher than we should and outboard along the side of the hull amidships. 8 tanks give us 8 fuel lines, 8 filler ports and 8 vent lines for a total of 32+ opportunities for fuel leaks. As the tanks are currently installed it is nearly impossible to get behind them to paint the hull. The tanks are plumbed with bottom drains and while each tank has a shut off valve I don't like tanks that drain from the bottom.

To solve all these issues here's my plan: I will install two intergral tanks low in the bilge such that the outside wall of the tanks will be the shell plating. Additionally I will install two 75 gallon tanks connected to deck filler ports to get fuel into the tanks. During fueling, I will use our fuel polishing system to move and clean the fuel from these two tanks into the main tanks in the bilge. I will also install two integral day tanks, one for each engine which will be filled with the same fuel polishing system. These tanks will hold approximately 50 gallons each (about a day and a half of fuel while cruising) and will gravity feed into the engines.

I'd appreciate your comments on this plan. I'll also have 8 50 gallon fuel tanks for sale shortly for anyone interested.

Regards and my thanks in advance for your comments,

TJ
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Old 13-04-2009, 03:07   #2
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Good luck on your refit!

Do you have access to the ABYC Standrds, such as ABYC Standard H-33, Diesel Fuel Systems?
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Old 13-04-2009, 08:56   #3
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Nope. Is it posted on line?

Thanks,

TJ
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Old 13-04-2009, 09:02   #4
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A few points to consider.
- Steel boats rust from the inside out.
- You'll be lucky to avoid getting water in your diesel and so eventually, you'll get a puddle of water sitting in the bottom of your tanks along one of the stringers.
- unless you plan on installing huge access and inspection covers, it will be difficult to thoroughly inspect the tanks for corrosion.
- subsequent repairs of the integral tanks will be difficult and expensive; welders are allergic to go putting a torch anywhere near something that once held fuel.

ps - we once had a delightful steel round bilge Roberts 36.
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Old 13-04-2009, 09:11   #5
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I've thought about that and this is how I'm addressing this problem: I'm planning on constructing these tanks so the bottoms have a slope, thus any foreign material and water will settle at the low end. at the low end I'll weld in a foot (think of an L with the leg down). From the top of the tank I'll install a hard line which will fun to just above the bottom of the L. That line will attach to a standard suction gun, which will allow me to pull water and crud from the tank on a regular basis. Yes it's true steel boats tend to rust from the inside out and yes, there will be large inspection ports so we have access to the tanks for maintenance and cleaning. Finally, some welders know that if you fill the fuel tank to be welded with CO2 (after removing the fuel and cleaning the tank of course) welding is not a problem.

I love comments, please keep them coming.

Regards,

TJ
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Old 13-04-2009, 09:17   #6
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Some issues

Dear Yachts

Integral tanks are a good idea but if possible I would include in your design a bleeding valve in the lower end of the tank to bleed by gravity the water and sediments that will settle over time.

You may just bleed the tanks every year or so.

ABYC standards are avalaible to purchase on line.

Good luck in your project.

ZENCAP



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Nope. Is it posted on line?

Thanks,

TJ
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Old 13-04-2009, 10:15   #7
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Looks like you've thought it out.

Have you considered glass and epoxy lining the inside of the tank after you've taken all the usual anti corrosion precautions? It may keep the water off the steel? Just a thought... I'm not sure if its even a good idea or not.

Good Luck!!
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Old 13-04-2009, 10:24   #8
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No I haven't considered glass (don't like the smell), but Ameron makes an epoxy paint specifically for tanks and I'm planning on using that, which is yet one more reason for thos large access hatches in the top of the tanks!

Valves in bottom of tanks worry me, which is why I'm thinking a hard line running down to just off the bottom of the tank. I should be able to suck out all the water and crud that accumulates there with a vacuum gun.....right? Or am I not thinking right here?

I'll check out the ABYC web site, thanks.

Regards,

TJ
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Old 13-04-2009, 10:31   #9
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Yikes!!! Those ABYC folks are "right proud of themselves" judging by the $$ the charge to take a peek at their published standards! Does anyone know how a common person can read the rules without paying a kings ransom?

Regards,

TJ
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Old 13-04-2009, 10:37   #10
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ABYC H-33 is available for purchase ($50) at:

Downloadable Standards: American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) Store

Or

DIESEL FUEL SYSTEMS: American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) Store

See also FREE On-Line iformation at:

US Code of Federal Regulations - 46CFR182.455, Fuel piping:
Section

And

TP1332E (Canadian) Construction Standards for Small Vessels, Section 7.0, Fuel Systems
Section 7.0 - TP1332E - Construction Standards for Small Vessels - Marine Safety Publications - Marine Safety - Marine Transportation - Transport Canada

And

Boat Mechanical Systems Handbook ~ by Dave Gerr
Fuel Systems
(beginning page 46)

Boat Mechanical Systems Handbook - Google Book Search
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Old 13-04-2009, 11:21   #11
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Can we see some pictures of Wandrin Star?
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Old 13-04-2009, 11:38   #12
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Here she is on the lift. My apologies for the pic quality. It was raining cats and dogs and I was concerned about my digital camera getting wet. We lost the last one when I took it swimming in Mexico last year and the wife still hasn't let me live that down!

I was very pleased at how clean we were as we hadn't been hauled in about 20 months. Love that Ameron 214 anti fouling paint!

Regards,

TJ
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Old 13-04-2009, 11:54   #13
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thanks
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Old 13-04-2009, 12:10   #14
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Why didnt you haul in Brookings TJ?
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Old 13-04-2009, 12:52   #15
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Yachts66, you are throwin' out two SD-33s????? Any marinization parts you want to get rid of? My Anacapa 42 has a brand spankin' new SD-33 aboard, and there are several other SD-33 owners around here. We could sure use some of those parts!

PS; That is one sweet boat!
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