need ideas for gravity feed diesel tank - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 12 Old 09-30-2009 Thread Starter
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need ideas for gravity feed diesel tank

I have a Dickinson Pacific heater/stove fed by a loud pulse pump. I want to get rid of the pump and install a gravity feed day tank in the cockpit locker. I know Dickinson sells a beautiful SS tank for $300 but does anyone have a cheaper solution?
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post #2 of 12 Old 09-30-2009
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I made mine from 304 SS. If you wanted to go cheaper you might consider making one out of Fiberglass.
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post #3 of 12 Old 09-30-2009
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Tank for heater

For my main fuel tank I used a polypropylene fuel tank from a motor car. It was from a VW and 65l. Great material because it is indestructible and anti-condensation.

Perhaps for a smaller tank you could look into a windscreen washer or radiator expansion tank. I think they are made of the same material.

Hope that helps Alan
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post #4 of 12 Old 10-03-2009 Thread Starter
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Someone has suggested a regular outboard fuel tank with a primer bulb on the line. I like the idea but i don't know if it would meets these stove requirements:
1. the fuel must be filtered to 10 microns
can i attach a filter to rubbery fuel line or can/should i install copper?
2. fuel pressure must be below 4psi
how do i measure this?
3. tank must not be pressurized.
I can't find an explanation on how these tanks work so i don't know...
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post #5 of 12 Old 10-03-2009
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I would imagine that a regular diesel engine fuel filter as used on an inboard would be fine since fuel injectors demand high levels of filtering. Copper of course would be the best option but diesel resistant fuel synthetic fuel line would be fine for the job too.....but as I say copper would be the first option. As for pressure...I cannot imagine that from your cockpit to stove would be anywhere near 4psi.

All that being aid though - I am no expert and I am sure there are folk reading this who know more than I on this subject.
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post #6 of 12 Old 10-03-2009
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To be safe the portable tank needs to be yellow. A five gallon "jerry jug" with the a dip tube adapted to 3/8" fuel hose with a quick connect was my solution. I ran the hose to a bulkhead mounted fuel filter[Racor is my favorite] from the fuel filter to the stove is copper tubing (1/4") {not all copper tubing the same suggest type L}

Elevation provides the motive force to move fuel (4 psig is about 9 feet of elevation difference)

Note that the fuel filter gets cloged easy so I put one of the clear plastic mesh filters in the line for visual verification that I had fuel moving.
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post #7 of 12 Old 10-03-2009
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I dont have my dickinson book handy, but if I recall correctly the gravity fed fuel tank only has to be several feet higher than the heater inlet. I put rubber grommets on my electric pump that quieted it alot. You can get an in line auto fuel filter. I would use a flexible fuel line and just use copper at the heater to a few feet out. I found dickinson very helpfull when I called.

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post #8 of 12 Old 10-03-2009
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pony keg you can get them for $50



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post #9 of 12 Old 11-12-2009 Thread Starter
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gravity feed problem

I've installed a gravity feed system as shown in the attached diagram.

The stove operates properly for 10-15 min and then runs out of fuel. Squeezing the priming bulb returns flow for another 10-15 minutes.

Increasing the drop from tank to carb makes no difference.

any suggestions??
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post #10 of 12 Old 11-12-2009
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seems that you needed the pulse pump!

"Next best thing to not having a boat? The knowledge from having one!" Denise, Bristol PA, On Tidal Delaware River, Anchor Yacht Club.
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