Water and fuel tanks

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by Dave-Fethiye, Oct 25, 2007.

  1. Dave-Fethiye
    Joined: Jun 2007
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    Dave-Fethiye Junior Member

    Why don't people use plastic barrels for the fuel and water tanks ?
    Here everyone seems to use custom built stailess steel tanks. I guess that it is to make the best use of space and to prevent them rolling around. But the cost of them seems pretty high. Large plastic barrels are much cheaper and won't corrode at all. My water tank is leaking, I am thinking of putting in a couple of barrels when I need to replace it ( pretty soon).

    Any thoughts ?
  2. M&M Ovenden
    Joined: Jan 2006
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    M&M Ovenden Senior Member

    Depending how large your plastic barrels are they could contain a large volume of liquid and could require baffles.
    Usually a custom made tank will ( or should) be designed to limit violent load shifting.

  3. Fanie
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Fanie Fanie

    Probably habbit. Old plastic water tanks tastes like plastic, but there's nothing wrong with the polyethylene ones, providing it is actually polyethylene.

    I've used plastic fuel tanks for may years without problems, but I never seal mine tight so they can blow off then they heat up, be sure there's ventilation. As far as I know the plastics has to be specific for fuel. The wrong plastic may dissolve over time and cause a bigger problem !
  4. ted655
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    ted655 Senior Member

    The bungs of drums are the weak point. Over time they tend to leak. They also are not located in places that are convenient sometimes. Lack of baffles in relation to volume can give them momentum with a high center of gravity (even on their sides), that might cause handling or stability issues.

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    FAST FRED Senior Member

    The "best" modern fuel tanks are plastic. But for the builder there a pain.
    Upon the first fill the tanks will expand about 1% to 1 1/2%, so the tanks have to be filled , then secured into the vessel.

    Extra steps are more build time and cost.

    The plastic is "best" as we have no idea what witches brew will be required next year by our brainless burorats.

    The GRP , fiberglass, tanks has been a huge problem as they dissolve when using Gasahol.
    AS the tanks are usually really inside most boats , replacement is a huge butcher job.

    Aluminum is good , but requires a very special install to have a reasonable service life.

    Unfortunatly plastic FUEL tanks come in a limited number of sizes and shapes , as there only created for bigger production boat builders due to the mold expenses.

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