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Author Topic:   Outrage 18 Below the Deck
lizard posted 05-24-2015 03:57 PM ET (US)   Profile for lizard   Send Email to lizard  
Several years back, I remember photos on some website, perhaps this one, that showed the 18 with the deck pulled up, and you could see the tank and rigging channels. Does anyone know where this might be OR does anyone have photos of a 1987 Outrage 18 sans deck?

There are two round [Beckson] deck plates just in front of the splash well. Shouldn't these drain when the bilge is pumped? I would appreciate close up photos of those exposed, if anyone has them.

[Asked about procedures to flush engines. This topic is moved to a thread REPAIRS/MODS that was concurrently discussing precisely this topic.--jimh].

Any answers to these questions are appreciated. Trying to help a buddy out who is new to Whaler ownership.


AZdave posted 05-25-2015 12:03 AM ET (US)     Profile for AZdave  Send Email to AZdave     
This is for an Outrage 22. I think the layout is similar.

jimh posted 05-25-2015 07:12 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
I do not recall seeing the hull of an 18-footer without the deck covers, but I bet it looks a lot like a 22-footer as shown in


The 18-footer might also be similar to a 20-footer, as seen in

The circular pry-out BECKSON deck plates usually cover the area of the central fuel tank cavity. The one in the more centered part of the deck is generally in the vicinity of the fuel tank pick-up hoses. The one to Starboard of center is usually around the point where the fuel hoses pass through the wall of the center cavity into the rigging tunnel.

The center fuel tank cavity typically does not have a drain.

elvis posted 05-25-2015 12:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for elvis  Send Email to elvis     
I have a bunch of 18 pics I'll try and get them to you. I wish I could drop them here but don't know how.
lizard posted 05-25-2015 06:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for lizard  Send Email to lizard     
JimH--Yes, the sub-deck area on the 18 is more like the photo of that 20, that you provided, in that as the rigging channel moves from the console toward the splash well, it veers to the starboard side of the boat.

I would still appreciate any mid-1980's photos without the deck, as well as any responses to my other questions. Thanks.

jimh posted 05-26-2015 10:31 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
The central fuel tank cavity in c.1980 Boston Whaler boats does not connect to the deck sump except via a small drain on the ridge that separates the fuel tank cavity from the rigging tunnel. This drain is placed high on that ridge, and will only let water drain (in either direction) when the water level is very high. High water in the central fuel tank cavity is not drawn to the sump pump by suction, but can only flow to it via gravity when the level in the central cavity becomes so high it can flow through that high drain hole.

The drain hole is also used to pass wiring between the fuel tank cavity and the rigging tunnel.

The fuel tank cavity is filled with the aluminum fuel tank. The tank is usually surrounded by foam. The density of the foam is not as great as that in the Unbond hull interior because the foam expands against atmospheric pressure. The foam, when new, is a closed cell foam and does not hold much water. Water will pool and puddle on the top layer of foam. As the foam ages, there are reports that it begins to hold water, and water tends to seep down into the lower portion of the cavity. The foam might also shrink over time and withdraw slightly from the walls of the cavity. If this occurs then water could flow to the lower portions of the cavity via the gap between the foam and the tank or walls.

Water that is below the level of that high drain will sit in the cavity forever, until it evaporates or is vacuumed out. On my boat, I tend to remove the three circular pry-out BECKSON deck plates to permit better air flow across the surface of the tank and foam to aid in evaporation of water when the boat is in storage. Of course, you have to prevent rain from getting it, but I usually store the boat under a cover or indoors.

The BECKSON pry-out circular deck plates are the topic of a comprehensive thread at

That discussion will give you all the information you need on BECKSON pry-out circular deck plates. Leaks at the deck plates should be repaired, as that will allow water on the deck to get into cavity.

As already mentioned and hyperlinked, there are several good articles about refurbishing the central fuel tank cavity. Here is one more:

jimh posted 05-26-2015 11:41 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
[Moved the topic of outboard engine flushing to another thread on that topic in REPAIR/MODS.]
elvis posted 05-26-2015 02:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for elvis  Send Email to elvis     
I emailed LIZARD several detailed photos.
elvis posted 05-29-2015 05:55 AM ET (US)     Profile for elvis  Send Email to elvis     
Lizard, did you get the pictures?
jimh posted 05-29-2015 11:07 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
ELVIS--If you want to share images with others, perhaps you could post your images on a public image hosting site and let us all enjoy them.

ASIDE: I also sent some email to LIZARD and received no acknowledgement. I do not know if LIZARD is checking email at the address provided in the profile.

Buckda posted 05-30-2015 09:57 AM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
RE:Beckson Deck Plates -

There are at least three deck plates on an 18' Outrage deck. Forward, there is an opaque plate that provides access to the fuel vent hose fitting on the tank. Further aft (just aft of the console if it hasn't been moved), there is a clear plate that allows visual access to the fuel gauge that is mounted atop the fuel tank. Aft, there is an opaque plate which allows access to the fuel delivery hose fitting. I can't recall the factory rigged version on my old 18, but when I replaced the deck, I installed a fourth deck plate that allowed access to the fuel fill fitting on the port side just forward of the fuel gauge.

RE: Drainage of areas exposed by opening deck plates -
There is no "good" drainage of this area and I think it is one of Whaler's biggest design flaws on these boats. The fuel tank sits in a fuel tank cavity, also sometimes referred to as a fuel tank "coffin". The tank top is slightly below the edges of this cavity, producing a recessed cavity under the deck. The fuel tank is foamed in place so you have a cavity which is lined by gelcoat with a thin layer of pourable foam surrounding an aluminum tank with no drain opportunity other than evaporation.

How is water introduced to this cavity? Four principal ways:
Water from the deck can enter at two points. There is a rigging tube on the port side of the boat for the fuel fill and vent lines, which allows water to drain from the deck directly onto the top of the fuel tank. A small teak piece of wood is screwed to the rigging tube cover in this area which provides a non-water tight barrier. You could remove the Kydex panel and caulk this piece of teak to better protect from water entry at this point, but in a swamped situation, water is going to enter here.

The second way it can enter from the deck is via the rigging tunnel opening under your console. This also is sometimes equipped with some sort of dam to help divert deck water from the tunnel but in my experience, it is not adequate and could stand some upgrades. On my 25, I plan to install large PVC tubing in this area through which I can route the rigging. The PVC tube will be sealed to the deck so only water which is higher than the top of the tube (about 6 inches is my plan) can enter the rigging tunnel by this route.

The third way is via failed caulking around the deck itself.

The fourth way it can enter is via a flooded sump at the starbord stern of the boat. It can back fill the rigging tube, and if it reaches "deck height", it can enter the fuel tank cavity via the fuel delivery hose route (a small notch in the side of the fuel tank cavity near the top of the deck).

I guess there is a fifth way too, it can condense out of the air from cool fuel from an underground pump in the tank in a hot cavity.

"Deep" water in the cavity on top of the fuel tank can only exit via the small notch near the starboard transom where the fuel delivery hose exits.

The rest exits via evaporation..and some of it soaks into the exposed foam and resides at the bottom of the tank cavity and may be blistering the gelcoat there.

This "design flaw" is present on all of the 1980's Outrage and Revenge hulls.

If you remove the fuel tank cover for any reason, there are some modifications you can make to help, although those mods are more easily accomplished on the 22 and 25 foot hulls than on the 18' hull.

elvis posted 05-30-2015 05:23 PM ET (US)     Profile for elvis  Send Email to elvis     
Is there no way to add pics here?

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