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ContinuousWave: Whaler Repairs/Mods
Outrage Fuel Tank Replacement
|Author||Topic: Outrage Fuel Tank Replacement|
posted 04-14-2015 03:28 PM ET (US)
Greetings. About five years ago I replaced the fuel tank in my 1980 22' Outrage. I did some searching online found an article by David Pascoe regarding the best way to secure a new fuel tank. I took David’s advice and did not use foam to secure the tank. I made this decision for two reasons.
First, the tank cavity on my Outrage collects a significant amount of water. Foam becomes saturated and holds the water against the aluminum causing corrosion.
Second, I wanted a way to drain the water out of the tank cavity. To accomplish this I installed a tube in the tank cavity that passes aft to the storage area in front of the motor well. When I want to drain the water from the tank cavity, I pass the hose through the storage area drain tube and into the motor well. From there I pass the tube through the transom drain tube. The end of the tube is lower than the water in the tank cavity allowing the ability to syphon all of the water from the tank cavity.
How is the tank secured? The short story is that strips of plastic are mounted to the bottom of the tank using 3M 5200 adhesive. And 5200 is then used to mount the tank to the bottom of the tank cavity. I also created plywood blocks that were installed in front and behind the tank.
Davids article is available at http://www.yachtsurvey.com/fueltank.htm
P.S. The original tank was made with 1/8” aluminum. My replacement tank was made from 3/16” aluminum. The cost was about the same and I like having a tank that is 50% thicker than the original. Replacing a fuel tank on an Outrage is a big job. I hope I only need to do it once.
posted 04-14-2015 07:04 PM ET (US)
I am in the middle of restoring my 1989 22 outrage. Your thought process seems to be right in line with my own - although I did things slightly different.
Like you, I did not want to foam my tank directly in place. My solution was to use a heavy plastic underlayment product used in commercial flooring installations. It is dimpled like an egg crate only much smaller. The dimples allow air movement under a floor system and support 800 lbs per square foot.
I used this product such that the dimples touched the aluminum tank and then poured expanding foam between the tank cavity and the outside of the flooring product. As the foam expanded, the tank became securely locked in place while there is still a 3/8" air space all around the tank. I also added a drain that will allow water to move from the tank cavity to the live well cavity. Any water will drain to the bottom of the dimples and out the drain in the back.
As you did, I also made my tank from 3/16" plate.
David Pascoe has written some great articles. His article on the 29 Blackfin is among my favourites.
posted 04-15-2015 02:17 PM ET (US)
The foam lasted 25 years on my Temptation, so I'm thinking the original installation method was quite good. Why did you choose to change it? Having some type of drain seems like an excellent idea. My tank showed most of the corrosion on the top so I have a drain there too.
posted 04-15-2015 03:37 PM ET (US)
Hi Etchase. I decided to not use foam to keep my new tank in place because foam holds water against the tank, causing corrosion (but I like wjd’s solution to this problem). Foam also holds water and I did not want to add weight to my boat. And I wanted a way to drain water out of the tank cavity. I bet my new tank would last over 20 years if I had used foam, but I liked the advantages of not using foam.
posted 04-16-2015 07:51 AM ET (US)
Matt--Thanks for the interesting narrative of your fuel tank replacement project. What material did you use as the plastic strips that are adhered to the bottom of the replacement aluminum fuel tank? What was the thickness of the plastic strips?
posted 04-17-2015 03:06 AM ET (US)
Hi Jim. I can't recall the exact material I used on the bottom of the tank, but it was some type of plastic. I believe it was 1/8" or 3/16" thick.
posted 04-19-2015 07:41 AM ET (US)
Seven years ago, I removed the aluminum fuel tank from my 1990 Revenge 22 WT... After removal and inspection, I reinstalled the tank on top of 16" strips of 1/2" fuel hose that were positioned 12" apart and perpendicular to the keel... The fuel hose keeps the tank off the fiber glass, allows water to drain to the rear and allows air to circulate under the tank.
To secure the tank in place, I reused the aluminum straps across the top of the tank. These straps are original from the Whaler factory. But in place of foam along the sides, I used small inflatable boat fenders... One fender fore, one aft and two fenders both port and starboard... Inflated just enough to prevent any lateral motion of the tank.
Do to the lack of space in the "fuel tank bilge", I was not able to use a normal bilge pump. So, to remove any water that may/will accumulate under the fuel tank, I installed a 12volt diaphragm pump on the inside portion of the port side "bulk head"... I located the electrical switch at the helm... This pump is designed for fresh water systems, creates a vacuum drawing the water up the hose through the pump and then discharged over board...
Knock on wood, my fuel tank is now 25 years young and still going strong...
posted 04-19-2015 09:51 AM ET (US)
Has it been necessary to add air to the small inflatable fenders? My inflatable fenders lose a little air and need a pump up every couple of years.
posted 04-20-2015 06:20 AM ET (US)
Maintaining fender pressure was a concern I had when I did this job... The fuel tank itself fits the "V" shape of the hull very well and seemed to "lock" itself in place... However, I did check the fenders after the first summer and they seemed to be alright, I gave each one a quick squirt of air from the compressor and put the boat to bed for the winter. The following spring, I checked the fenders before fastening the fuel deck down for the summer and each one was just as I had left it the previous fall...
Last time I had the deck off was 4 years ago and they were nice and snug... Im pretty sure the fenders will last a long time considering they never see the sun...
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