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I have a small 20 foot sailboat.

The PO sold it to me with a rather large red plastic tank that sits on the floor of the cockpit leaving not a lot of room for feet. Since I only use the motor to get moving in becalmed conditions, or to help get back to the mooring when things get dicey, and since my OB is only 5 HP which gets about 25 kmpg, and since my cruising area doesn't take me more than 10 miles from the mooring, I can't see the need for a tank any bigger than 2 gallons. And knowing that this is the case, the gas may sit in the tank for awhile. I can't see having a tank filled with enough gas for 12 hours of motoring filling up my cockpit.

With the above circumstances, what would others who also have a small sailboat, and who usually just sail, and maybe use the motor to get in and out of the mooring or dock, recommend for the size of the tank sitting on the floor of the cockpit??
 

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islander bahama 24
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You didn't say what kind of motor you have, but most small outboards ,even 2 strokes, don't burn much fuel. From your description, 2 gallons or so would probably be more than enough. I have a 6HP Tohatsu 4 stroke which has an integral tank of a bit over a liter, which would get you about 30 minutes at full throttle. When fishing with about a 10 minute full throttle run, plus trolling, we burned about a pint per day.

I carried an extra pint can of fuel but never had to use it. No external tank required.:

Tohatsu Outboard Motor 6hp 4-Stroke

Paul T
 

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I would agree that a 3 gallon tank would be more than large enough. We currently have a 6 gallon tank for the 8hp 2-stroke Johnson on our P26, and we don't burn much more than a gallon each trip. Each trip consists of maybe an hour total of motoring at 1/2 to 3/4 throttle... maybe a bit less time.. who knows.

If I can hijack this thread slightly, I would have room in our engine well for a small three gallon tank if it could be oriented VERTICALLY. Is there such a thing? These new plastic tanks take up a lot of real-estate unnecessarily when they're horizontal.

Thanks...

Barry
 

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I would agree that a 3 gallon tank would be more than large enough. We currently have a 6 gallon tank for the 8hp 2-stroke Johnson on our P26, and we don't burn much more than a gallon each trip. Each trip consists of maybe an hour total of motoring at 1/2 to 3/4 throttle... maybe a bit less time.. who knows.

If I can hijack this thread slightly, I would have room in our engine well for a small three gallon tank if it could be oriented VERTICALLY. Is there such a thing? These new plastic tanks take up a lot of real-estate unnecessarily when they're horizontal.

Thanks...

Barry
Try this:

Moeller's Tempo Ultra3 Gas Fuel Tank 620003LP

Paul T
 

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I went from a six gallon metal tank to a three gallon plastic tank when I bought a new 8 hp two stroke engine about 8 years ago. The tank locker on my Oday 23 (under a seat) was clearly designed to accomodate the then-standard six gallon metal tank. The three gallon plastic tank that came with my Nissan engine is much smaller. I honestly don't miss the extra fuel capacity. I think I used to fill up the big tank twice, maybe three times a season. I obviously have to do it more with the smaller tank, but I like always having fresh fuel anyway. As a side note, when I first got the new engine and saw how small the three gallon tank was, I went to West Marine and looked at buying a new 6 gallon tank (the vent and guage on the old tank were broken...). The new "standard" plastic 6 gallon tank was marginally too big to fit in the tank locker on my boat, at least according to the published specs. I never bought one to check, and I've never missed it. When I go on a long trip, I bring a 2.5 gallon tote with me for extra capacity. I've never had to use it.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Maybe try a Google search on "Plastic outboard motor fuel tanks"?

Paul T
OK... it won't be EPA legal, but is there any reason why I can't convert a regular 2 gallon red plastic gas tank? After all, it won't ever be stored in an enclosed space, so there is no reason why it has to be have one of those terrible vapor seals. I have no locker in my boat. The gas tank has to sit on the floor of the cockpit stealing floor space from the Helmsperson.
 

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islander bahama 24
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OK... it won't be EPA legal, but is there any reason why I can't convert a regular 2 gallon red plastic gas tank? After all, it won't ever be stored in an enclosed space, so there is no reason why it has to be have one of those terrible vapor seals. I have no locker in my boat. The gas tank has to sit on the floor of the cockpit stealing floor space from the Helmsperson.
Check my last post there was a link to a conversion kit by craftsman CRAFTSMAN Sears Outboard Motor Optional gas tank assembl ... Parts | Model 21758620 | SearsPartsDirect
 

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I have an 8HP outboard on my boat and the gas tank is a 3 gal nissan vented metal tank. The PO had it in the bottom of the port locker, but since it was open to the rest of the boat below, it stank the place up to high heaven. It currently resides at the aft end of the cockpit, which hampers raising and lowering the swing keel. I need to build an actual locker with forced ventilation and then it's going back underneath. As soon as I figure out how the PO got the hose to go through the thru-hull grommet with the quick disconnect end on it--Think I'll be visiting a hose fabrication shop in the near future.
 

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OK... it won't be EPA legal, but is there any reason why I can't convert a regular 2 gallon red plastic gas tank? After all, it won't ever be stored in an enclosed space, so there is no reason why it has to be have one of those terrible vapor seals. I have no locker in my boat. The gas tank has to sit on the floor of the cockpit stealing floor space from the Helmsperson.


It is possible that you may not pass a Coast Guard or Sheriff’s safety inspection test with anything “home made”? Also, an insurance claim, either liability or property might be effected? My guess is that anything that is not “certified” by some over kill agency could be a liability?

If you can use a smaller, motor, many of them have integral tanks. As mentioned, our 6HP 4 stroke Tohatsu has an integral tank & can also use an external tank.

Paul T
 

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islander bahama 24
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Nice looking schematic. Unfortunately, next to each part the website says:
I saw that however it does provide schematics to make one yourself and with the schematic to show the USCG should pass muster just fine.
 

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Don't know what your transom arrangement is but the "Dingy Mate" might work, or perhaps it could sit on the cockpit floor?

Scepter Marine - OEM and Topside Fuel Tanks

I suppose you could retrofit a one gallon anti freeze bottle, which is tall & narrow? All kinds of possibilities. Could be that all/most of the commercially made tanks are broad is that they are concerned about the tank tipping over?

Paul T
 

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