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Old 10-24-2019, 03:48 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by SelahWay View Post
We'll have a lot to think about and plan for replacement: time, material, construction, de-construction, dollars, etc, etc, etc.
Although my quotes are from Mexico where labor is much less expensive, I'll offer the blow-by-blow as an example. Although labor is cheap, some materials are more expensive - proper alloy aluminum comes from the US so is roughly +20% more expensive. For me, fabrication, installation, and materials for Fiberglass tanks (excluding fittings, which were over $1000) was $3500. Engine was removed anyway to install a generator and do some rewiring, but would have been around $800. So all-in, from scratch, around $5500-$6000. US boatyard labor rates would send this well north of $10k.

I did get quotes on 0.25" aluminum of the proper alloy (I forget what number). Although the material is much more expensive, the labor is quite a bit lower because the fittings can be easily welded in place. The fittings are about the same cost. Overall, from the quotes I received, price would have been slightly higher for aluminum. In the US, fabricating in aluminum would be much less expensive because materials are less expensive and requires less labor.

With all due respect for the other Albin 36 owner who posted prior this (PO replaced the bottoms of the tanks), if you go this route, consider replacing the entire tanks - welding a new bottom only is a bit of an unnecessary short cut given all the work to get the tanks out. I'd bet the current owner in hindsight would gladly pay an add'l $3k to have had new tanks, not just replaced bottoms.

For me, an easy decision. Fiberglass is forever and was roughly same price as aluminum in Mexico. No worries about leaking deck-fills and water puddling on top of the tank, etc.

Good luck!
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Old 10-24-2019, 03:52 PM   #22
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5052 is the recommended aluminum.
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Old 11-01-2019, 02:13 PM   #23
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I have a 1986 Albin 34. It had a single 200 gallon tank, that leaked. My budget is tight, so rather than pay to remove the engine or cut up a section of the floor, I took the old sawzall to the old tank and spent a few hours cutting it up into manageable pieces and removed it. I then put in two 50 gallon tanks and plumbed them up. Tanks were about $300 a piece and another $300 for plumbing parts. It cuts my cruising distance in half, but with a single diesel and mostly doing intracoastal trips it creates no problems for me.
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Old 11-01-2019, 03:48 PM   #24
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Legality

Earlier in this thread somone said "First fuel tanks must be certified as fuel tanks, thickness, baffles and pressure testing, maybe other things that I am not remembering right now. They have to have approved fuel hose for fill, vent, supply and return. You would have to add supply dip tubes and return line. Then you might have fittings on the bottom of the tanks which may or may not be legal."

I curious about the "Legal" part of this. Is this really a law? Passed by our elected officials? Or, is is a rule, enforced by the Coastgauard? "Prepare to be boarded and have you fuel tank fittings inspected!". Or is it a rule for new boat manufacturers? Or a recommendation enforced by your insurance company? What are we really talking here?
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Old 11-04-2019, 10:39 AM   #25
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Andrewc - You're comment is encouraging, couple questions.
- What material did you use for the new $300 tanks?
- Did you add sight-gauge/glass tubes?
- Before the saw cutting, how clean did you have to make the tank, and how did you accomplish it?
I am a diesel newbie and fear a saw-spark ignition, but not sure if that is a valid fear with this fuel?
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Old 11-04-2019, 11:04 AM   #26
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32grand, welcome aboard. Diesel is difficult to ignite unless it is heated. I have personally stuck a lit road flare into a pan of diesel. It would not ignite. After trying for a while to get it to ignite we finally added about an ounce of gas. It lit with a match. After it had burned a bit and was put out, diesel was then hot, the diesel would ignite easily with the flare.
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Old 11-04-2019, 11:11 AM   #27
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From having cut up a home heating oil tank. The sparks from a grinder or cutoff wheel will ignite diesel. But without atomization diesel will not explode like gas.
I have cut into several tanks that could no be emptied completely, I drilled a hole into the tank, and then using a metal cutting blade on a sawzall to open a window big enough to service the tank. After thorough cleaning, the tanks were repaired with welding, painted inside with tank liner, and welded shut. I used this process to repair the keel and saddle tanks in my steal sailboat.
By the way, If you keep the blade speed down, a sawzall blade will cut a long way through steel. Run the saw at about 1/3 of it's full RPM. My personal record is almost 4 feet through 1/4" plate before the blade needed to be replaced. Run the saw at full speed and you will only get a few inches. You want a blade with a tooth spacing that will allow 2 teeth in the thickness of the steel of possible. If not, the finest you can get.
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Old 11-13-2019, 07:06 PM   #28
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Fuel tank replacement

Quote:
Originally Posted by SelahWay View Post
We have an 1980 36' Albin with steel fuel tanks that will need to be replaced soon. A thought come to me today that I could use the two stainless steel water tanks in the lazerette as the fuel tanks. I could then cut out the existing fuel tanks and use those spaces for bladder water
tanks. Has anyone done similar? Is it doable?
I have a 1984 GB 36. The old tanks were taken out and two new aluminum tanks were installed. The measurements of those thanks are such that they fit through the cabin door if they have to be taken out and replaced. Just a thought.
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