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Old 12-14-2015, 09:20 PM   #21
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Mike:
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Old 12-14-2015, 09:39 PM   #22
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How about "hanging" or mounting the locker on the outside of the transom, running the hose through to the Galley from there. I haven't read the regs but imagine the locker could simply drain overboard there.
There are no "regs" in Canada or US for pleasure craft, only ABYC Standards.
ABYC Standard A-1 does apply to US vessels carrying passengers for hire.
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Old 12-15-2015, 07:46 AM   #23
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Homemade

I built a box out of Starboard. It probably wouldn't pass and standards checks but I believe it is safe. It has a vent at the very bottom that goes overboard. I installed propane sensors at the box and at the floor near the stove. The sensors shut the propane solenoid in the box. I am too cheap to buy an off the shelf model.
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Old 12-15-2015, 08:01 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fryedaze View Post
It probably wouldn't pass and standards checks
Absolutely correct.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fryedaze View Post
I believe it is safe.
Not so much.
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Old 12-15-2015, 08:02 AM   #25
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Very nice looking job Dave.


1983 Present 42 Sundeck
Twin Lehman 135's
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Old 12-15-2015, 10:47 AM   #26
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Our surveyor told us we had to move the tanks from under the cowling because of none compliance with codes. that was seven years ago. The lockers at the marine stores were unattractive and too much $. We found a teak cooler intended for poolside use that as far as I can tell complied with the rules. It opens without tools, is sealed with a gasket and has a little spigot for drainage that works as a vent. It's location is not over an opening widow. We put a horizontal tank inside and a bottle opener on the front. It came unfinished so we used Cetol to match our rails.
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Old 12-20-2015, 08:35 AM   #27
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Installing an off the shelf, compliant locker makes very good sense. Using an existing vessel locker, which is possible, is much more challenging. Among other things it can't be used for storage of other gear and it must have a horizontal rather than vertical hatch.

If the off the shelf locker you purchase is installed inside one of the vessel's own lockers ABYC does weigh in on how this must be done in order to remain compliant (see italicized section), saying...


"Lockers used to contain LPG cylinders, cylinder valves, regulating equipment and safety devices shall be designed to minimize the likelihood of use as a gear storage locker and shall be

1.8.1.1 vapor tight to the hull interior, and

1.8.1.2 located above the waterline, and

1.8.1.3 constructed of, or lined with, corrosion resistant materials, and

1.8.1.4 shall open only from the top with a gasketed cover that shall latch tightly, and

1.8.1.5 shall be capable of being quickly and conveniently opened without tools.

1.8.2 Installation
1.8.2.1 LPG lockers shall be installed so that the locker opens only directly to the outside atmosphere, and

1.8.2.2 if a LPG locker is installed inside a boat locker, the LPG locker shall be located as high and as close to the boat lockerís opening as possible in order to comply with A-1.8.2.1. (Italics mine)"
(Excerpted from ABYC A-1 Standards and Technical Information Reports for Small Craft July 15-16, this is not the complete standard)

The ABYC LPG standard, A-1, is among the shortest in the book, yet it is also among the most challenging with which to comply. If you are doing this yourself be sure you fully understand the requirements. If you are having someone else carry out the installation, ensure they agree to do so in a manner that is fully compliant with ABYC A-1.
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Old 12-20-2015, 10:34 AM   #28
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Don't like propane on boats, or gasoline engines for that matter. An outboard on deck is one thing. Hundreds of gallons down below is another. Seen to many that blew up.
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Old 12-20-2015, 11:03 AM   #29
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One day not long after we bought the boat I went down into the Vee berth and opened up the storage locker and the smell of propane about knocked me out. The propane bottle was under the flybridge dash and a connection began leaking. The gas went down the chase for the engine controls and wiring, which is also the route the rubber propane hose took to get to the range. I was reworking the flybridge at the time so it was a good time to move the bottle out of the dash. I moved a Todd brand seat that had been facing forward up by the dash to the starboard side. I raised it up enough and cut a hole in the bottom of it to accommodate the bottle. It is directly above the range. I installed the propane hose to go through the flybridge and straight down to the range. Now there is only 5'of hose inside the boat instead of 25'.

Yes I know this is probably not abyc compliant but it is 100 times better than factory. I did have the boat surveyed this year and expected him to write something up about it but he did not say a word about it. He did write me up on the extra propane bottle I had lashed to the rail though.

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I would just suggest putting something under the bottom of the tank to raise it up off the floor so it doesn't leave a rust ring on the floor.

Or just changing the bottle out to a fiberglass one that can't rust.
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Old 12-20-2015, 11:25 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by fryedaze View Post
I built a box out of Starboard. It probably wouldn't pass and standards checks but I believe it is safe. It has a vent at the very bottom that goes overboard. I installed propane sensors at the box and at the floor near the stove. The sensors shut the propane solenoid in the box. I am too cheap to buy an off the shelf model.
If you can't change it to top opening, you should at the very least make sure it's air tight when the door is closed with better latches as well as that the box is vented out the side of the helm space.

The way it looks now the box doesn't look air tight and it's not much better than if the bottle, regulator and hoses were just mounted open under the helm in the open.

But then again, there are lots of old boats out there with non compliant propane installations and they aren't blowing up right and left all over the place.
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Old 12-20-2015, 11:30 AM   #31
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Again .... Safe Boat Propane Installations.
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Old 12-20-2015, 11:46 AM   #32
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Or just changing the bottle out to a fiberglass one that can't rust.
Oh yeah. If I ever get a boat with propane again the bottles WILL be plastic. Trying to keep the rust off steel bottles is a never ending torture.
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Old 12-20-2015, 11:48 AM   #33
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To be clear, ABYC guidelines are design recommendations for new builds. They are absolutely not U.S. Coast Guard safety requirements for existing designs. The propane tank under the flybridge console on our boat has been surveyed three times without out issue. It has a raised dam around the perimeter of the horizontal tank (propane is heavier than air), and an overboard drain is at the bottom of the dammed area. The feed line into the cabin is sealed. The tank itself is open to the rest of the area under the flybridge console. I have a propane sniffer in the bilge.


I did have one surveyor who tried to tell me that it was "non-compliant" with ABYC. Before I fired him, I called SAMS and spoke with their technical staff. The person I spoke with said his own boat had exactly the same arrangement and he thought it was safe. When queried, my insurance company was fine with the original factory design.


Safe is a relative thing. It has an obvious cost. ABYC and the surveyor community often partner in safety symposiums. Aftermarket companies are partners in the safety business. You pay for all of this. In the aircraft world a 1950s Cessna is "minimum safe" per it's 1950's certification basis unless there is a safety record that demands a retroactive "fix" (an airworthiness directive (AD). If the recreational boating world had a safety problem with old propane systems, rest assured that the Coast Guard would have an associated retrofit requirement. The data do not support one. Rolling over to surveyors with their ABYC "requirements" sets a bad precedent. If a new propane system makes folks feel more safe, then that's a personal choice. But the safety history of a well maintained original factory system on these old boats does not support it. All government safety regulations must pass a cost benefits analysis. Sure, more is better...but be careful about being sold a bill of goods. "More" has a cost...to all of us.
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Old 12-20-2015, 12:16 PM   #34
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our boat has been surveyed three times without out issue.

I did have one surveyor who tried to tell me that it was "non-compliant" with ABYC. Before I fired him, I called ABYC and spoke with their technical staff and he thought it was safe.
You fired the only one of your surveyors that knew what he was talking about.
As someone who has run a number of ABYC courses I find it hard to believe an ABYC tech advisor would tell you your system is compliant and for legal reasons they would absolutely not tell you it was safe.

Title 46 25.45-2 United Code of Federal Regulations Does require all vessels carrying passengers for hire to comply with ABYC A-1. Title 46 was written before propane was common on pleasure craft but we all know how slow government is.
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Old 12-20-2015, 12:43 PM   #35
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Firstly, I contacted SAMS, not ABYC (I made the correction to my original post). Regardless, the question is "safe" according to what....the latest and greatest recommendations for new boats? ABYC will keep on upping their level of "safety" because they're out of business if they don't. And rest assured they are a business. Surveyors are part of the safety business. Manufacturers of new propane lockers market their wares as part of the safety business. As long as the boat owner community buys into the charade, business is good.

I spent 25 years writing and approving FAA aircraft design safety standards. Your inference that the government is just slow in addressing a perceived safety issue is a red herring. Safety requirements are always more demanding for commercial operations. The record does not support retroactively requiring uprated systems and the considerable associated cost for recreational water craft. The surveyor in question was fired because he was bandying ABYC about as a requirement and he was completely out of line in doing so. My SAMS contact said as much. The individual should have been fired by SAMS. But individual membership dues to the organization (business) apparently trumps credibility and ethics. I can assure you that I would have fired an FAA designee that used a more demanding safety regulation that was issued after the original certification basis for an old aircraft.


By the way, thanks for making my point that ABYC and the surveyor community are in the business of marketing and selling safety.
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Old 12-20-2015, 01:08 PM   #36
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I would just suggest putting something under the bottom of the tank to raise it up off the floor so it doesn't leave a rust ring on the floor..
I was a bit surprised to find a plastic ring made for just such a purpose at Lowes for about $8. I bought me one. It stabilizes the tank as well but I'm sure most of us will secure the tank.
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Old 12-20-2015, 01:46 PM   #37
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Thank you Steve DAntonio for posting that information, I hope to see more posts from you here.
Personally I kind of like the idea of ABYC and surveyors who sell safety. Not many organizations give it away for free and I like the fact that each time I take a boat ride on newer and newer boats that they have more safety features.
Yes, safety features cost money, but I do not want to take my family or friends on a potentially questionable boat.
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Old 12-20-2015, 01:46 PM   #38
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Firstly, I contacted SAMS, not ABYC (I made the correction to my original post).

By the way, thanks for making my point that ABYC and the surveyor community are in the business of marketing and selling safety.
First of all as a SAMS AMS I can assure you that SAMS does not have a "technical staff" in fact there are only two full time admin office staff who could not, will not provide opinions on such a matter although they might be able to coordinate your mailing list and publish a newsletter for you. I don't know who you called (apparently neither do you) but it was not SAMS.

and...... yes we are in the business of promoting safety.
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Old 12-20-2015, 02:01 PM   #39
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Once we buy a boat, we are not bound by ABYC or any other safety standards.

That said, it would be foolish not to follow them as closely as possible. While the ABYC and USCG are concerned with everyone's safety, as boat owners and operators we should be concerned with our personal safety and the safety of friends and family who we invite onto our boats.

These safety organizations have the expertise and testing equipment to determine what is safe and what is not. As individuals, the vast majority of us do not have that expertise. Just because you have been doing something for years and never had a problem doesn't make it safe, it just makes you lucky.
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Old 12-20-2015, 02:03 PM   #40
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Oh yeah. If I ever get a boat with propane again the bottles WILL be plastic. Trying to keep the rust off steel bottles is a never ending torture.
Steel and plastic/fiberglass are not the only two choices. The propane locker on our cabin cruiser is the port flying bridge seat base. We replaced the single BBQ-style steel (and rusting) bottle that came with the boat with a pair of Worthington horizontal marine tanks made of aluminum. Not the least expensive option on the planet but well worth the cost in our opinions. We also have a pair of 1.5 gallon Worthington vertical aluminum tanks in rail mounts for the barbeque.
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