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Old 28-11-2020, 08:45   #1
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Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestions)

So Iím sailing an Alberg 30 (previously run on atomic 4 gas). There is an integral fuel tank, my plan is to get a standard fuel pump (inboard components have been removed.) and use the tank as my primary fuel storage for my outboards with an extra 5 gallon tank. I donít see any issues with this in theory.

-downside it will take longer to refill fuel in outboard

-I will need to be vigilant about fuel condition as my consumption rate may be low compared to storage.

Upside
-greater fuel capacity/less shore fuel dock visits

-safer storage than on deck Jerry can storage as this is what the tank was designed for.

I understand Iíll have to clean tank, check integrity, replace exiting indeed our feed and vent hosing.


Am I missing anything, does this make sense?

Best
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Old 28-11-2020, 09:08   #2
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

Not clear about current propulsion. Have you replaced the Atomic 4 with a diesel? If so, where is the diesel fuel stored?
Assuming you have that worked out, I presume you are talking about the standard 18 gal. (As I recall) tank. That’s a fair amount of gasoline for dinghy use. Fuel condition is certainly a consideration.
Don’t know what part of Florida you’re in, but here in southeast Texas we have to watch water condensate after a front blows through. A couple of weeks ago we had a norther dropping temps to the high 40’s. Overnight a quart of water formed in the tank, which of course immediately appeared in the Racor. A half or less full tank provides ample volume for enough water to form overnight in suddenly cooling air temps.
Eliminating 5 gal. jerry cans is certainly safer, but they give you a chance to eliminate water condensate if kept topped up.
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Old 28-11-2020, 10:33   #3
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

I built an outboard well in the transom lazerette so my main propulsion is the outboard. So my fuel demands are higher than that for a dink. (Dink outboard too)
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Old 28-11-2020, 11:28   #4
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

Since the fuel tank was intended for gasoline use for the Atomic 4, youíre basically just re-routing the fuel flow. The concept should work, but remember if it is the original fuel tank, it is a steel tank at best 35 years old. Mine was showing rust at 25 years. Itís age would be my biggest concern.
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Old 28-11-2020, 12:15   #5
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

Should work fine.

As mentioned if it is a steel tank it could rust. In a previous boat, added an inline fuel filter to an A4 and one time in some rough weather it did clog.

Unless you can get ethanol free fuel would add a filter w/a water separator since you will be using it for longer term fuel storage.
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Old 28-11-2020, 12:32   #6
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

An option would be to put a new plastic tank in the old tank, with less storage than original, but more than a typical OB tank to keep fuel fresh.
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Old 28-11-2020, 12:42   #7
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickeyrouse View Post
Since the fuel tank was intended for gasoline use for the Atomic 4, youíre basically just re-routing the fuel flow. The concept should work, but remember if it is the original fuel tank, it is a steel tank at best 35 years old. Mine was showing rust at 25 years. Itís age would be my biggest concern.


For sure. I plan on using an endoscopic camera to access interior. Exterior is great.

Thanks
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Old 28-11-2020, 12:45   #8
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

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Should work fine.

As mentioned if it is a steel tank it could rust. In a previous boat, added an inline fuel filter to an A4 and one time in some rough weather it did clog.

Unless you can get ethanol free fuel would add a filter w/a water separator since you will be using it for longer term fuel storage.


Oh haha fuel filter and water separator totally slip my mind. I generally use ethanol free but not sure how dependable that supply will be further down the road.

Might serve me well to put two fuel filters and a two way bypass in the event one gets clogged in an emergency.
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Old 28-11-2020, 12:48   #9
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

Just definitely run a Racor or two so you can separate the fuel and water as well as any tank crud.

I have 150 gallons of inboard gasoline in plastic tanks. It’s vital to run those Racors
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Old 28-11-2020, 13:37   #10
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

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Just definitely run a Racor or two so you can separate the fuel and water as well as any tank crud.

I have 150 gallons of inboard gasoline in plastic tanks. Itís vital to run those Racors


Hope youíre not a smoker
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Old 28-11-2020, 13:39   #11
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

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Hope you’re not a smoker
Why? Do you smoke below decks in your boat?

It’s insanity on sooooo many levels to smoke in a boat.
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Old 28-11-2020, 16:55   #12
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

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Originally Posted by Chotu View Post
Why? Do you smoke below decks in your boat?

Itís insanity on sooooo many levels to smoke in a boat.


I do smoke. I am as safe as practical. Quit for a year. I reckon for as long as people have been smoking aboard vessels, literally100ís of years but significantly since the 1600ís; the accidents directly related to tobacco are minuscule if not insignificant. Though thatís not to say itís not dangerous, stupid, and ideally avoided. But, like anything we do, we mitigate the risk with responsibility and consent to inherent consequences hoping the joy outweighs the risk.
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Old 29-11-2020, 04:12   #13
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

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Old 29-11-2020, 10:06   #14
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

Gas is an explosie fuel and produces vapour that is heavier than air which can collect in the bilges. If stored below deck it needs a gas tight compartment and all electronics must be spark proof. Think the same spec's as on a tanker. On a yacht this is almost impossible and cirtainly impractical. Also how will you get the fuel up on deck to fill the outboard? Almost all available pumps say 'do not use for gas' unless they are gas fuel pumps fitted in the tank that are so slow they would only be practical if you ran the tank as a remote with a permenant line to the outboard. Stick to cans on deck, much safer.
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Old 29-11-2020, 10:19   #15
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Re: Utilizing old onboard fuel tank as storage for outboard fuel. (Opinion/suggestion

Should be fine as it was gas originally. Use Stabil regularly and alcohol free fuel if you can get it. Alcohol has an affinity for moisture. Water separator mandatory. Run your engine dry if leaving for more than a month. the carb bowl gets really scuzzy on E10 fuel if left in over 6 months.
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