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Author Topic:   Revenge Belly Tank
whaler22 posted 02-06-2002 12:45 AM ET (US)   Profile for whaler22   Send Email to whaler22  
I just removed the floor on my 1980 Revenge V-22. WOW!! What a mess. It's amazing what acumulates in 22 years. I'd like to remove the belly tank but have some concerns first. I've noticed the tank is foamed in on 2 sides but not fore or aft of the tank. Normal? Upon replacement, what type of foam should I replace this with? "Expanding foam- in-a-can? And the styrophome on top of the tank just beneath the floor; where can I obtain new stuff like this? There is water in this area around the tank. Is this normal? I thought it was supposed to drain out. I have pictures for anyone who'd like to see this project.
jimh posted 02-06-2002 09:17 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
The pictures would be of interest to most everyone, in as much as all of the 18-foot and larger Whalers have very similar fuel tank installations.

I do not believe there is any mechanism for water to drain from that cavity because the bottom of the cavity is below the boat waterline. Apparently water was not supposed to collect in there in any great quantity, and any water that did would have to leave by evaporation.

How about eMailing the photos too me and I will post them in a CETACEA feature or a REFERENCE article.


180 posted 02-09-2002 09:59 AM ET (US)     Profile for 180  Send Email to 180     
Photos would be great. I am planning on getting into a similar project this spring. Please keep us updated on your progress.
180 posted 02-09-2002 10:00 AM ET (US)     Profile for 180  Send Email to 180     
by the way, I have the same boat. 1981 though.
Dave Murray posted 02-09-2002 09:19 PM ET (US)     Profile for Dave Murray  Send Email to Dave Murray     
After replacing a 63 gallon belly tank last spring, I can tell you first hand that removing the tank is a major undertaking- The expanded foam used by Whaler to install the tank sticks like epoxy to the tank sides- had to use a 5' pry bar with padding to bust the tank out, then you have to carefully chisel the remaining foam from the walls of the tank cavity- overall, not a fun job-however, the dealer wanted $3,000 for the job and I did it myself for about $900 total. I used a commercial two part expandable foam from West marine to foam it in. By the way, if you leave the rear sump plugs out like I do on mooring, the fuel tank molded well will always have some water in it- even with the water bath, the tank lasted for 23 years...E-mail me if you need more info- the help that I got from this board last spring was what made me realize that I could do the job myself....
whaler22 posted 02-25-2002 08:26 AM ET (US)     Profile for whaler22  Send Email to whaler22     
Before removing the tank I had to remove 14 gals of water from the area around the belly tank! At 8lbs /gal that's approx 112lbs extra weight to carry around. I think I'm going to run a hose from this area to a bilge pump.
My filler neck/sending unit plate- I was able to adapt a universal type under the plate where the original sending unit was located. Not as bad as I thought.
180..Did you get your pics?
ctoutrage posted 02-25-2002 09:07 AM ET (US)     Profile for ctoutrage  Send Email to ctoutrage     
I would also be very interested in seeing the pictures. I have a new tank on order from FMT. Will be doing the same job within 3 weeks on a 1978 21' Outrage.
180 posted 02-25-2002 04:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for 180  Send Email to 180     
I did receive the pics - thank you very much. I bought a 1981 revenge 22 last summer. I haven't taken the floor up yet, and by the looks of things, I am not sure I want to. How did you know that you needed to replace the fuel tank?
Thanks again,
jimh posted 02-25-2002 06:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
It is not a bad idea to replace the fuel lines on these older boats, especially if you have to use any alcohol-additive gasoline. It looks like replacing the filler hose would be impossible without getting the floor up.

Once the floor is up you can inspect the tank and assess its condition.

Ray posted 02-25-2002 10:04 PM ET (US)     Profile for Ray  Send Email to Ray     
Believe it or not, I did replace all the hoses including the filler hose on my 20' revenge 1981. It was not easy because the filler pipe had to be flattened for a portion of the way that fits under the flooring and then reexpanded to fit over the tank nozzle. It would have been easier of course to remove the flooring except that looked like a lot of work also. The rest of the lines, fill and vent were no problem.
whaler22 posted 02-26-2002 12:50 AM ET (US)     Profile for whaler22  Send Email to whaler22     
I can't say I really knew I had to remove the tank. I purchased an older boat and replacing old hoses and gaskets just seemed like a good idea. I also didn't have a working sending unit in the tank. The unkown scared me more than taking it apart.
Removing the floor wasn't that difficult. It was the removal of the consoles for the cabin that were difficult. The port side was relatively easy. The starboad side with the electrical and cables was a job. I plan on replacing my steering system, shift cables and all my electrical. I currently have Johnson 175hp on back. I'd like to add trim tabs, change my steering system, ad a bilge pump(for the gas tank area)and replace my interior for the cabin. Any suggestions/comments would be appreciated.
CTOUTRAGE--pics on the way.
Thanks for you input guys,
csj posted 03-05-2002 08:57 PM ET (US)     Profile for csj  Send Email to csj     
Whaler22 why are you considering pulling the gas tank ? I recently pulled my floors on my 89 22' revenge and replaced the hoses, not that they needed to be replaced. I looked over the tank and saw no reason to replace it. Unless you have serious pitting in the metal there is no reason to replace it. What concerns do you have?
whaler22 posted 03-06-2002 12:53 AM ET (US)     Profile for whaler22  Send Email to whaler22     
No real concerns. The foam around the tank smelled like fuel. I have a plastic tank and I was concerned about the seam. Also to replace the sending unit and flush the tank it was just easier to remove the tank. However, one thing lead to gelcoat under the tank has serious blistering and is holding water just under the surface. I'll begin sanding this weekend. This little venture of curiousity is about to get expensive. I just priced a duel cable steering system. I haven't even gotten to the fun stuff yet. IF anyone is curious what it looks like under the floor, visit and be patient. Geocities isn't very fast. I'm no web master but managed to get pics on line for anyone to view.
lhg posted 03-06-2002 11:33 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
If your Revenge had a plastic belly tank, it is not original, and probably has already been replaced once. So you are not looking at an original installation. All Outrage/Revenge tanks were aluminum.

Forget using dual cable steering, and upgrade to Hydraulic.

dfmcintyre posted 03-07-2002 09:53 PM ET (US)     Profile for dfmcintyre  Send Email to dfmcintyre     
Larry -


During the early 80's, Outrages _did_ come from the factory with plastic tanks. I owned from the factory.

It was replaced, due to a really, really weird problem, by the company.


lhg posted 03-08-2002 03:32 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Thanks, Don, for the correction. Hope I didn't mislead anyone. Since my '86 18 Outrage tank is aluminum, I assumed they always had used them. I do wonder why they first thought the plastic tanks would work, then switched to aluminum.
dfmcintyre posted 03-10-2002 07:48 AM ET (US)     Profile for dfmcintyre  Send Email to dfmcintyre     
To expand on what I had mentioned earlier (I was just about out the door....) here goes:

Had a 22' Outrage, factory new. Developed an odd problem:

First two years we had it, no fuel problems, then, during the third season, it ran out of gas (Ok, so that's not exactly a _weird_ problem, but...). during an outing.

The gauge was registering somewhere between 1/8 and 1/4 fuel left.

Ok, gauge problem, I thought....

When we filled it, but it didn't take a full load, actually 3/4 of a normal empty tank.


This situation repeated itself. When it was close to 1/4, I pulled the sender mechanism, and checked it. Worked fine, and couldn't see anything in the tank that was odd.

Talked to the dealer, who talked to Whaler. They sent a new alum. tank to replace the plastic one.

Seems that the mold release agent that was used during the production of the plastic tanks, didn't allow the foam that the factory used to "seal" the tanks into the tank cavity to adhere to the tank. As we know, water can and does enter into the tank cavity. The water was migrating down and sitting under the tank.

Ok, no big deal. Not even a potential for corrosion, since it's a plastic tank.

But what about a boat that's in a northern climate? And to make matters even more confusing, it's boats that are in a northern climate, that are stored in an _un_heated shed (remember for the first two years we had no problem? She was stored in a heated storage building, hence no problem) that would have the water turn to ice, and this created a bulge in the tank.... _right_ under the fuel sender mechanism.

This must have drove the factory nuts, trying to figure out how only certain hull owners were calling with this problem....

Anyways, when the new tank arrived, I watched as they cut away the silicone, unscrewed the hatch and, using a forklift and straps, lifted off the lid (I can't recall if the superconsole was still attached....). When they took the plastic tank out, we could see the bulge on the bottom. After a while, in the warm sun, it made a giant sucking sound, and popped the bulge out.

As I said, weird...


whaler22 posted 03-10-2002 12:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for whaler22  Send Email to whaler22     
That's incredible Don! I just moved this boat from Louisian to Oregon. I'm sure I would have been scatching my head this winter had I not started this project. The water around the tank commpartment,about 14 gals., and in the troughs, were all full of ice. The plastic tank was being squeezed by the frozen water and foam. I haven't been here long enough to notice the sending unit problem because I only ran it in the summer. Thanks for the save. Instead of only foaming the sides like original, I'm going to foam around the tank on 3 sides and place a bilge hose aft of the tank in this compartment.
I'm really suprised my tank didn't bust a seam. I filled it with water to clean it out and checked for leaks....all looks well.
I just sanded down all the blisters in this compartment. I was going to just epoxy paint this area instead of gel coating. Any Problems with doing this?
Thanks again guys.
Oh, yea. visit for a look at the on going project. I'll be adding pics as I go.
dfmcintyre posted 03-10-2002 06:20 PM ET (US)     Profile for dfmcintyre  Send Email to dfmcintyre     
Dave -

Well, in a nutshell you've just found out that doing what your doing is a goooood thing!

I wouldn't worry about gelcoat vs epoxy down in the tank cavity. Whatever you are more comfortable with.

Where are you in OR? My wife is originally from Portland.

Best -Don

lhg posted 03-11-2002 03:43 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Somewhere I read that plastic under-floor built in tanks are a cheap detail, and not a good idea nor recommended. Guess this is the reason why. I'm surprised Whaler did this. I would switch to an aluminum tank. I think all of Whaler's current Outrages have aluminum tanks.
peteinsf posted 03-11-2002 08:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for peteinsf    
With all this water showing up in the tank compartment would it not be advisable to run a capped off hose down to the "Bilge" so you can check for water with out pilling the tank cover. Is there another way to check for water without pulling the cover?
whaler22 posted 03-11-2002 11:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for whaler22  Send Email to whaler22     
While sanding tonight, I got to looking at how my fuel hose ran out of the tank area through to the bait well, then over to the bilge area under the teak hatch, up to the filter. If you were to remove the inspection lid at the rear of the tank, disconnect the hose on the siphon tube, you should be able to reach into the bait well and pull the fuel hose through. This would leave you a port into the area just behind the tank. (Provided your tank was foamed in the same way mine was--2 sides only)Maybe you could then force a piece of hose into this area and siphon, or at least check for water.
Hope this helps.
peteinsf posted 03-12-2002 12:13 AM ET (US)     Profile for peteinsf    
Thanks David,

Iíll have to try that some other way; I donít have the bait well option.

I guess my point was there seems to be a lot of repair posts with boats having big problems with their internal tanks. Rotten foam, aluminum tank corrosion, ice incrusted plastic tanks. In almost all the cases it could be avoided if the owner knew that water was there and took corrective action quickly, like some calk. Kind of like the Fram ad campaign ďpay me now (for a water detector) or pay me laterĒ for a new tank, and under floor wood, and a head ache. Itís not like you can hear it sloshing around down there, Iíd think it was fuel. Jimh has said that they intended it to evaporate, but I would have designed in a way to tell if the lowest point on your boat had water in it! (hmm, I think this is my first hull complaint)


lhg posted 03-12-2002 12:25 AM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
I open up the three floor access plates, at the fill, at the gauge and at the withdrawls, so this area can air dry with the heat build up under the cover. Seems to work pretty well, as my tank areas are completely dry. I have noticed some surface water in there when leaving, and when I come back next time, it's gone.
peteinsf posted 03-12-2002 12:34 AM ET (US)     Profile for peteinsf    
Maybe these boats never knew Mills! Whaler should make a mooring cover a warranty requirement
dfmcintyre posted 03-12-2002 03:22 PM ET (US)     Profile for dfmcintyre  Send Email to dfmcintyre     
Pete -

You can get unwated water down there just by washing the deck.


NEVER SCARED posted 03-12-2002 03:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for NEVER SCARED    
If the tank is foamed in, how is there water in the "belly"? Especially 14 gallons? I see water on top of the tank all the time, but isnt there foam under, between, in front and in back of the tank? I also think there is a raised area around the tank which prevents all the water from draining into the sump. Right?

Never scared

peteinsf posted 03-12-2002 04:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for peteinsf    
If you have been following Tom's CSW thread we have all learned that foam and water do mix very nicely. And from some of the photos of belly tanks the tank foam looks a bit soggy.
Drisney posted 03-14-2002 02:44 AM ET (US)     Profile for Drisney  Send Email to Drisney     
Dave (Whaler22)
Nice job on the photos. I just purchased a 1979 Revenge V-22 that looks to have the plastic tank. It is always nice to see what you are getting into in advance.....
whaler22 posted 03-14-2002 08:58 AM ET (US)     Profile for whaler22  Send Email to whaler22     
Yes, there is foam all around the tank but the tank and foam surrounding the tank are in enclosed in a fiberglass "tub". This is not "Hull foam". I gathered the foam in this area was only for support of the tank so it wouldn't move. Sorry for not being clearer. When I said "belly" I wasn't referring to the actual hull itself, just the central/middle part under the deck around the tank(tank tough?) Visit my little attempt at web page,
and you can see the are we're talking about
Tom W Clark posted 03-14-2002 02:05 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     

The tank is not entirely foamed into place. I have the exploded parts diagram for the 18', 22' and 25' hulls. The tanks are placed on pads of foam to hold it up off the hull and I believe expanding foam is placed around the perimeter to lock in. But there remains plenty of volume to fill with water should water get in there (and it will).

whaler22 is correct, the tank is not inside the hull but rather in the molded in depression in the floor of the boat. A fiberglass cover of placed over this to contain the tank and allow access to it in the future just as whaler22 is doing.

I know that in the case of my 1983 Outrage 18 there was quite a bit of room down there to hold water. I could have the water in the bilge no quite up to the level of the floor and when the boat was hauled from the water and the plug pulled, gallons and gallons of water would drain out, not just the little volume of the sump area.

This was one of the reasons I never left the plug out when the boat was in the water. It would add a tremendous amount of weight every time you accelerated onto a plane and waited for the water to drain out. A real performance zapper.

NEVER SCARED posted 03-14-2002 04:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for NEVER SCARED    
Wow! I intentionally flooded my entire deck in my Outrage 18' hoping that a crab that crawled under the consol and into the cutout for the cables would "float" out. He had been there for 2 weeks and started to ripen! I may have water trapped cause everyone tells me my trailer tires look low, but they are properly inflated. Now I stuff a rag in the cable cutout before I pull the pots!

Never scared

dfmcintyre posted 03-14-2002 08:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for dfmcintyre  Send Email to dfmcintyre     

See my 03/10 post on this thread. The factory found out, only after some problems that they developed water under the tank issues due to the tank mold release agent not allowing the foam to adhere to the cavity walls.

I believe that the bond between the metal tanks and the walls of the fuel tank cavity is sealed better, and there may little or no water under the tank. I couldn't comment on if the foam is soaked through and through to allow water to go below.

Best - Don

whaler22 posted 03-15-2002 12:42 AM ET (US)     Profile for whaler22  Send Email to whaler22     
Hey Don,
When I put the plastic tank back in, should I foam it on all sides or try to run a bilge hose to this area. I believe the plastic tank will probably want to expand and contract more than an aluminum tank. This would be my only concern with foaming on all sides. What do you think?
dfmcintyre posted 03-15-2002 10:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for dfmcintyre  Send Email to dfmcintyre     
If I had your project, I'd give some serious thought about riggging up a bilge hose.

On my 21 Outrage project, I ended up creating a hole between the tank cavity and the rear bilge, that has a brass tube running between them. The tube was 5200'ed inplace.


Chris J posted 03-22-2002 11:42 AM ET (US)     Profile for Chris J  Send Email to Chris J     

THANK YOU for posting the pics of your "project boat." They are worth way more than 1000 words. Please continue to post pics as the project progresses.

Looks like you are doing it right... I've been considering lifting the floor of my Revenge to see what's down there, but was afraid of what I'd find. (I guess I had good reason to be afraid.) I think I'll pull the tank cover this Spring and see what's up (or down).

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