Re: Fuel Tank Replacement
Posted by: gsmurphy
Date: April 29, 2007 04:37AM
Category: Water & Fuel tanks
Well, Kate. You haven?t seen them all, yet.
Regarding bilges, one might say that a little moisture, as inside a woman?s panties, is common and not necessarily a bad thing. The moisture is associated with the slats being keep swollen. Tightness down there is generally considered good. And as the shaft rotates, some moisture is required to lubricate the shaft. A little water will often drip out during motion, but no one complains. Although one hears reports of the ?dry bilge? one wonders how much these vessels are being used. (Dripless rubber seals excepted. :-) ) Of course, too much water is not good, as we are reminded from time to time: corrosion, staining and funky smells can occur. One generally then avoids sailing her until the bilge is pumped and the leak staunched. One of the best ways to take care of your vessel is to use her, and use her well. With this use will come, one hopes, a little moisture, but in the end, everyone will be satisfied.
Well, an update: The old tank has had the bottom 5 inches cut off it and a new bottom has been heliarc-welded in place. The loss of 4 gallons still gives Destarte? 23 nominal gallons of diesel, excluding Jerry cans on deck. Getting the tank back in place, in the bilge, under the engine, proved challenging. The boat must have shifted her conformation a little when the tank was out, so that the repaired tank would not easily fit back in place. To get leverage on the aft portion of the tank required a car jack, blocks of wood, and a person crawling through the lazarette into the engine compartment to place everything. All was done gingerly with no great stresses, and the tank is now back under the engine, but resting upon taller wooden blocks. The voyage may continue.
By the way, I was wrong that there were no limber holes in the old blocks. They were there but hopeless plugged after 15 years of inaccessibility. They are now clean, but their inaccessibility due to all the tankage down there raises the question of how to keep them free of debris.
While wrestling with this problem, I called Berry Steel in Costa Mesa who said they could make me a tank like Morse used, and I may do that in the future as a second tank. Tom on White Wings sent me pictures of his installation so I can see now how it works. It is neat, and apparently he can still crawl into the shaft alley along the side of the engine opposite the quarterberth. I noticed in Marty Chinn?s drawings for IDUNA on an old posting that there are two fuel tanks drawn in, one forward of the lazarette above the shaft and another below the engine in the bilge.
The downside for me to the tank in front of the lazarette is that it will make access to the shaft tough because, Destarte? having two quarterberths, access alongside the engine is limited. Nevertheless I will consider it at next refit.
Meanwhile I am reminded that Destarte? is first and foremost a Sail Boat and that the engine is principally for docking or traversing dangerous capes in flat calm conditions, or reaching that virgin anchorage before sunset in light air. Destarte? had no engine for her first 10 years of swimming, and BCCs have circumnavigated without internal combustion power. So, enough on the engine and time to resume exploration of the Sea of Cortez!
Thanks to all for the help. This string is now closed/
s/v Destarte? (nee Mintaka II, nee Tyree)