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  Inspecting an in-hull fuel tank

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Author Topic:   Inspecting an in-hull fuel tank
spartan posted 07-29-2002 07:51 PM ET (US)   Profile for spartan   Send Email to spartan  
I have a 76 21' Outrage and want to pull the deck to inspect the gas tank (currently empty) and surrounding area. I dont believe the tank is leaking, just want to see if there is water between the tank and hull. Is this project a waste of time, or a area that warrants being checked?. There is a round "pyth" access port in the center of the floor with a wire and alot of grease. (Part of the fuel gage?) Sould this be serviced as it looks as if some of the grease has been removed and there is some water in this area. Your help is definitely appreciated.
Tom W Clark posted 07-29-2002 08:15 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     
spartan,

First of all, water down around the fuel tank is normal. The tank is not really sealed but is ultimately part of the bilge. There will always be some moisture or fogging under the pry out deck plate.

The plate is a PYHI (the manufacturer) not "pyth". These plates are no longer being made. Be careful with this plate as you do not want to break it. Other deck plates on the market now are slightly different sizes and thus are a pain to use as a replacement for a PYHI plate.

The grease is there as much to ease the installation of the plate as to keep water out.

The wire you see is probably the grounding wire if it attaches to a lug on the tank itself or it might be part of the gauge is you have a remotely mounted fuel gauge in the dash.

If the tank is original, then it is pretty old. It may well be fine but if you do take up the floor to get at it I would suggest you plan on replacing it regardless of its condition. That way you will start with a new tank in 2002 and you won't have to worry about it.

I believe Florida Marine Tanks ( http://www.floridamarinetanks.com/ ) made the aluminum tanks for Whaler back then and I suspect a new tank could be had for $200 to $400.

spartan posted 07-29-2002 08:27 PM ET (US)     Profile for spartan  Send Email to spartan     
Thanks Tom, The inside of the tank looks great, no crud, just shiny aluminum. The boat shows easy use over the years. Do you really think replacing is necessary? How much time should it take to install a new one?
Tom W Clark posted 07-29-2002 08:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     
I'd just leave it alone if I were you. You can always deal with it later if you so desire. I believe replacing a fuel tank is a big project.
ctoutrage posted 07-30-2002 03:52 PM ET (US)     Profile for ctoutrage  Send Email to ctoutrage     
Replace it! Best thing I ever did on my 1978 21' Outrage. I was having constant water/fuel problems. The job is very straight forward. It took (2) of us 4.5 hours to do the entire job including new lines. (vent, fill, engine) FMT for the tank, 6-8 week lead time. Great people to deal with.

If you need further insight into the job, let me know. I did it in March 02'

spartan posted 08-02-2002 10:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for spartan  Send Email to spartan     
Thanks, I am going run a tank through her first to see what happens.
White Bear posted 08-03-2002 11:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for White Bear  Send Email to White Bear     
If it works leave it alone. The enemy of "good" is "better."

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