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Mondofromredondo
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Any of you installed any kind of water level sender and gage on your PSC?

I typically use the aft water tank till it goes dry and up fwd I have one of those flexible water bladders that holds about 15 gallons. that way I know when its time to fill the aft tank. But I think now I'd prefer to know before the aft tank runs dry. Any of you find a monitoring system that your pleased with that isn't too hard to install or too expensive?

Thanks all !!
 

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Sorry, I can't recall the brand but I could find out for you. A friend has had good luck with this type of externally mounted level gauging system. The image is from an RV site (might be a good place to get it!).. the strips shown are simply glued to the outside wall of the tank. In all likelihood they work on capacitance changes.



Here's another possibility - not an analog indication but multi-point - also externally mounted.

http://www.tek-tanks.com/boattanks/digital-level-indicators/
 

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Thanks IS... google wasn't being my friend this morning!!
 

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Mondofromredondo
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Currently I have no existing sensors so I'm going to need the entire system. As my water tank is integrated into the hull and fiberglass I don't think mounting anything to the side of the tank is possible or practical. I'm thinking access from the top only. I prefer not to have to install a big float sender and am looking at the "Heart Tank Tender" products which are non mechanical and rely on measurement of the weight of the fluid column by means of a plastic tube insterted from the top of tank to just an inch above bottom of tank. A little pricey but appear so far to be a good solution. The install certainly looks to be reasonably simple.
 

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You could make your own such gauge pretty easily... Buy a gauge in the appropriate "inches water column" scale, insert your tube from the top to an inch or so within the bottom of the tank, and tee in the gauge and a way to 'pump it up' - a squeeze bulb type thing.

When you force a bubble out of the tube, the pressure it takes to do that is equal to the pressure exerted by the weight of liquid, proportional to the actual height. in the case of a water tank you could read the gauge directly (in inches). In a holding tank you'd need to know the 'density' of the material in the tank so that could be variable.

btw it takes 27.68 vertical inches of water to create 1 psig pressure - gives you an idea of how low a pressure we're talking about.
 
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Currently I have no existing sensors so I'm going to need the entire system. As my water tank is integrated into the hull and fiberglass I don't think mounting anything to the side of the tank is possible or practical. I'm thinking access from the top only. I prefer not to have to install a big float sender and am looking at the "Heart Tank Tender" products which are non mechanical and rely on measurement of the weight of the fluid column by means of a plastic tube insterted from the top of tank to just an inch above bottom of tank. A little pricey but appear so far to be a good solution. The install certainly looks to be reasonably simple.
You might want to check in with the folks at Seacraft Yacht Sales here in Seattle to find out what others have done and their recommendation. In addition to owning the Dana molds and having a very close relationship with the factory, they know every model of these boats inside and out (possibly even your specific hull). The guy I'd start with is Ray Neglay, 206-547-2755.

Disclaimer: Ray was my buyer's broker on a boat but I've got no commercial relationship with Seacraft.
 

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You could build a simple sight gauge, simple piece of clear or semi clear hose hooked up before the water pump (if pressure water) that you can visually look at to see the level. does not have to be right near the tank, and you can make your own markings on it to tell if full or close to empty since it does not sound like you are looking for exact measurements. Should only cost a few dollars in hose and a T fitting.
 

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I screwed out the white inserts in the water tank 4" Beckson deck plates and screwed in clear ones. It was a 10 minute, $30 job. For another $15, I put one in the holding tank.

I just raise a cushion, look in, and know what is there. No fuss, no muss, seeing is believing.

Beckson Screw Out Deck Plate / Inspection Port

Bill Murdoch
1988 PSC 34
Irish Eyes

p.s. For four years or so I have had a SCAD Solo level gauge on the holding tank with the glued on foil strips. It has not been reliable measuring the holding tank level. It gives readings that are +/- 25% or more from known levels. I know the holding tank level both by looking into the tank and also by pumping it empty then re-filling it through the deck out pump out with seawater poured from a 2.5 gal bucket. I think the problem is a combination of the construction of the fiberglass tank wall which may contain a piece of plywood and the brown muddy and sandy substance that builds up on the inside of the tank walls between clean outs. Last month I disconnected the external foil sensor and installed a rod sensor in the tank. Ask me in a few months, and I'll tell you how well it works. The gauges are sold in the marine market as SCAD Solo and made (and also marketed) by Home Page
 

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+ 1 on the Tank Tender. I have this installed on both the forward and aft water tanks and the main and aux fuel (custom) tanks on my 37. Very accurate after calibration and maintenance free.
 

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Keith,

I have been using the Snake River (since bought out by someone else) for around 10 years or so for both water tanks and the holding tank. Works pretty well with the aluminum strips vertical outside the fiberglass with a copper strip horizontal to attach the wires.

Let me know when you will be down by the docks and I will show you the setup.

John
PCS 31 #28
 

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I have been looking at adding the Maretron TLM100 ultrasonic sensors to measure the tank levels in the boat. The sensors would connect to the existing NMEA 2000 network on boat.

The existing NMEA2000 network consists of B&G Triton displays, wind, depth, speed sensors and an older Garmin GPS/Chartplotter connected via a NMEA183 to NMEA2000 connector. The levels would display on the Tritons but in order to convert/calibrate the signal into a volume a Maretron display or PC interface would be needed to send the proprietary configuration messages to the sensors.

The device is $195US list but can be found for approx $154US. 4 of them would be around $620 which is comparable to the Hart Tender. A Maretron display (DSM150) is $495 list but available for under $400. As the Tritons all sit up behind the traveler would be nice to have a NMEA2000 display at the nav station.

Marc Hall
Crazy Fish - Maintaining, Upgrading and Sailing a Crealock 37
 
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