Day tank/extra fuel tank in the life-raft locker


Paul Osterberg
 

Hello!

I was recommended by Riza to use High Density PolyEster as tank material for an additional tank in the life-raft locker. Does anyone of you have any experience in that material for a tank? I was part owner in a sailboat where we put in a tank in HDPE, it worked well for the few years I was involved but that was only 3 years so any tank would last 3 years. I see some advantages, light material that do not corrode, easy to weld and form.


Paul on S/Y Kerpa 

 


myersdon1
 

Paul,

I believe that you mean High Density Polyethylene.  Polyester is the resin material used most often with glass to form fiberglass.  HDPE does work well for fuel when the tank is properly made for that purpose and does last a reasonable amount of time.  The jerry jugs many of us use to carry diesel or gasoline for our dingy are HDPE.  The major cause of failure is exposure to sunlight.  For gasoline use, the tank should be made specifically for that purpose.

Don Myers

Harmonie SM160


Paul Osterberg
 

Yes I mean Polyethylene, Jerry cans etc are blow molded or rotation molded if larger, but when you make on purpose they are usually welded, is that good enough?

S/Y Kerpa  


myersdon1
 

I would be comfortable with a roto-molded tank from a company that makes tanks for fuel.  The gasoline tanks in my helicopter are made this way and tested to withstand very high impact.  I would not be satisfied with a tank welded from sheet.  One of the holding tanks on Harmonie was replaced with a roto-molded tank with the fittings welded in.  This has worked well in that application for over ten years.  I do not have experience with this approach for fuel, however I suspect it would be satisfactory as some outboard gasoline containers are made this way.

Regards,

Don Myers

Harmonie SM160


Derick Gates SM2K #400 Brava
 

Paul,

 

After mounting the life raft on the rail, the previous owner of Brava (AKA 'Ulys of Tortola') installed a 250 liter supplemental tank in the life raft locker in June of 2011.  The tank is made of aluminum, and it is plumbed into the diesel recirculating system in such a way that the main tank can be shut off at the main tank out let and the return to the main tank, then the supplemental tank can be opened at a valve in the supplemental tank and a return valve near the main tank reurn valve.  When individually turned on, both tanks make use of the dual racor fuel filter system, and supply both the generator and the engine.  I my brief experience (the last 2 years) this system has worked well with no issues.

 

Based on the timing of the installation, I believe the tank was installed in Turkey, perhaps even in Riza's boatyard.  The cost was reported to be 1,200 euro.  I will post a photo to show how the installation looks.

 

Derick

 

SM2K #400 Brava

St. Thomas, USVI


Paul Osterberg
 

Looking forward to your photos, My idea was to use it as a day tank and pump "manually" from the Main tank through the current Racor filter, Then I should have clean fuel in the secondary tank, and from there take fuel through a dual Racor filter to the engine and genset, It should be more or less bullet proof I hope.
Regards
Paul on S/Y Kerpa SM#259


Derick Gates SM2K #400 Brava
 

Paul,

 

I added the picture to Bill Rouse's photo album titled "Fuel Storage Options".

 

As an extra precaution, I tend to fill the main tank and the supplemental tank at separate times/fueling locations, in case a location provides "bad" fuel.  I test out the "new" fuel ASAP, and  if the fuel turns out to be a problem, I can switch back to the other tank until the bad fuel problem is resolved.

 

This past summer I neglected to turn off the main fuel tank during hurricane storage for several months, and I lost half a tank of fuel to the bilge pump after a fuel feed line ruptured from age.  Having replaced the ruptured fuel line, I was able to continue to use the engine and the generator despite the empty main tank because the supplemental fuel tank had been isolated and was unaffected by the spill.

 

Derick

 

SM2K #400 Brava

St. Thomas, USVI