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Go Back   SailNet Community > Boat Builders Row > Pacific Seacraft > How low can you run your fuel tank
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Thread: How low can you run your fuel tank Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
03-28-2012 04:55 PM
johnharch
Re: How low can you run your fuel tank

That looks really nice, BluesHarp. It would be easy to ready while lying in the fetal position on the floor in 20+ wave too. I thought about doing the same thing with a glass lens, but in the end decided that it was not that much of a chore to lift the lid when I needed to check the fuel level, which really, for me, isn't that often.
03-27-2012 08:13 PM
BluesHarp
Re: How low can you run your fuel tank

I cut the sole with a hole saw and inserted a bronze deck fill to make it easier to read my fuel gauge. Now I don't have to lift floor boards in order to verify fuel levels.
Attachment 10411
03-17-2012 04:22 PM
PCP
Re: How low can you run your fuel tank

Quote:
Originally Posted by RainDog View Post
I agree. Seems to me running your engine in 20+ foot waves is poor idea. I would instead lay on the cabin sole in the fetal position and cry.
Sorry guys, I did not want to give the impression that I sail in storms.

Actually along the Portuguese coast you can find sometimes some really big waves that form in big Atlantic offshore storms but if the wind does not blow over 30K they are just impressive and not dangerous because they don't brake and are not short period waves.

I was talking about one day that I got some of those in passage. Nice sailing, downwind with 20K wind except that near sunset the wind died but not the waves and what has been a very pleasant sailing day turned from some hours in a rather bouncing experience, with an engine that worked in a very irregular way. We where near port but take a long way to reach there, doing about 2/3K speed

Well, near shore they break:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&fe...&v=ihACGHa7Jvs

Regards

Paulo
03-17-2012 03:16 PM
RainDog
Re: How low can you run your fuel tank

Quote:
Originally Posted by teejayevans View Post
Forget the engine, I'd have a problem sucking air in 20+ ft waves
Tom
I agree. Seems to me running your engine in 20+ foot waves is poor idea. I would instead lay on the cabin sole in the fetal position and cry.
03-10-2012 05:34 PM
teejayevans
Re: How low can you run your fuel tank

Quote:
Originally Posted by PCP View Post
I had a single 150L single tank and yes with about 25 liters inside and big waves (20/25ft waves) the engine had problem sucking air.
Forget the engine, I'd have a problem sucking air in 20+ ft waves
Tom
03-09-2012 11:13 AM
PCP
Re: How low can you run your fuel tank

I had a single 150L single tank and yes with about 25 liters inside and big waves (20/25ft waves) the engine had problem sucking air. I guess it is not as much the state of the sea but the size and steepness of the waves. Going up an down those big waves tilted the boat a lot and the inside tank wall was not sufficient to prevent all fuel to go to one side.

Regards

Paulo
03-09-2012 03:43 AM
seabum
Re: How low can you run your fuel tank

I found out the hard way that one should never trust the fuel gauge. Ours was reading 1/4 tank and I was going to fill up the next day.... when we ran out of fuel.

If you're going to empty the fuel tank and you have a diesel furnace, remember to shut off the diesel to the furnace so that you don't drain it and therefore have to bleed it. Luckily I can fit inside my starboard cockpit locker, because that's how I had to access the furnace intake to bleed it.
12-10-2011 10:18 PM
Capt Len Every system is unique. I'll tell you how mine works. Because I need a day tank for my diesel stove, I can fill it with a pulse pump or by return from injectors. It has a sight glass. The main tanks are vented thru this to outside.Because it's cold here the moisture from the air condenses in the day tank first and can be dealt with before it reaches either main tank by the drainable sump. Another line with it's own shut off and filter goes to the fuel manifold. If the unthinkable happens again I'll simply shut of the main fuel valve and open the day valve and be good for 4 more gallons TA DA!
12-09-2011 07:45 PM
johnharch
Update

Update...

I bit the bullet and drained the tank and opened it up today. This was very informative.

I emptied the tank by running the electric fuel pump and pumping into 5 gal cans. It was able to suck it right down to the bottom, leaving only about a cup of fuel.

1. My access port is about 6" square secured with 8 machine screws tapped into the tank top and sealed with some sort of sealant. The sealant was hard and poorly adhering so that the plate just lifted right off. No doubt this would leak if the tank were over filled, accounting for the diesel I once found in the bilge.

2. When the access port was installed, some of the squeezed out into the tank. Most of it was stuck to the sides, but a few drips on the bottom of the tank hadn't stuck and were floating around waiting to plug the intake line.

3. The tank was remarkably clean. There was a little sludge in places on the bottom totaling maybe 5 sq in. in spots about the size a quarter. The fuel level sensor is quite clean. Cleaning it looks to be a relatively easy job if I put in another access plate on the port side.

4. There is one baffle running front to back from top to bottom with the bottom corner cut off on the pickup end. There is no way to get past this baffle to clean the port side or even inspect it, without installing another access plate.

5. Without any lateral baffling, it still seems to me that sucking air in rough conditions is a big concern, I'm thinking I don't have to worry too much until I get down to the last 5 gallons or so.
11-26-2011 09:20 AM
svjobeth John -

Cleaning the fuel tank and polishing the fuel contained within is a job I hire out. It's messy, smelly, and very toxic. For me, it's one of those jobs that's worth paying someone else to do.

Our access plate is a single circular plate, secured with sheet metal screws and gasketed. Of course, when the tank is opened, the old gasket has to be cleaned off and a new one made. I'm not too sure about access; I think that our tank has a single fore and aft baffle, and that access is reasonable, considering. I'll ask the mechanic that does ours and report back.
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