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Old 09-15-2019, 01:19 PM   #1
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Silly use for a spliced loop

I often forget which fuel tank I am drawing from. Easy to check if I climb down into the aft part of the ER, but since I can check the filters and vacuum gauge without doing that, I usually donít.

I created a spliced loop that will fit around my fuel gauge. So now I only need to glance at that to remember. Yes, I know my helm needs to be dusted.Click image for larger version

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Old 09-15-2019, 01:24 PM   #2
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Good idea, Dave. But I am disappointed that you didnít detail your boat before posting photos of that disgustingly dirty helm...
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Old 09-15-2019, 01:36 PM   #3
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I switch tanks every four hours and to display which side, I place a miniature brass Bruce anchor on the appropriate side of the compass.

I also record the tank switch in the fuel log with hours, estimated fuel consumed since last switch and current fuel levels.
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Old 09-15-2019, 01:40 PM   #4
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Good idea, Dave. But I am disappointed that you didnít detail your boat before posting photos of that disgustingly dirty helm...


I know. Iíve got to get my crew on that!
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Old 09-15-2019, 01:44 PM   #5
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I switch tanks every four hours and to display which side, I place a miniature brass Bruce anchor on the appropriate side of the compass.

I also record the tank switch in the fuel log with hours, estimated fuel consumed since last switch and current fuel levels.

Good idea. I could have just used my guitar playing pirate duck that sits next to the compass. The only problem is my 2 year old grandson likes to play with it. ;-)

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Old 09-15-2019, 01:57 PM   #6
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Why switch tanks.
A list to control?
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Old 09-15-2019, 02:38 PM   #7
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Why switch tanks.
A list to control?

For me, I just prefer to run on one tank at a time. I will switch tank to control a list that develops or I will simply transfer fuel.
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Old 09-15-2019, 03:13 PM   #8
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Curious, why run off of one tank?
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Old 09-15-2019, 03:43 PM   #9
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Clever, Dave. Why not offer it as a custom gauge reminder accessory in various sizes & colors! Of course, custom charcoal color for that rustic, unkempt helm look.

Seriously though, the best ideas are the really simple ones.
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Old 09-15-2019, 06:05 PM   #10
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I have no fuel gauges so I have to "stick" the tanks. I made up a long cotton string with lead sinkers on each end. About 4 feet of cotton line.

I drop the sinker into the tank and check the level by the knots I have tied in the line. Not real accurate, but close.

Since the cotton line gets diesel on it I don't bring it inside. I tie it off to the handrail and let it air dry. Whichever side it is hanging on, that is the tank I am drawing off of.

I carry over 350 gls of fuel and have a single F.L. 120. I generally switch tanks at the halfway point in my trip or vacation.

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Old 09-15-2019, 06:22 PM   #11
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Since the cotton line gets diesel on it I don't bring it inside. I tie it off to the handrail and let it air dry. Whichever side it is hanging on, that is the tank I am drawing off of.

Clever idea.
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Old 09-15-2019, 06:26 PM   #12
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Curious, why run off of one tank?

I certainly could. It has become a habit to run from one at a time. Part of the reason would be some issue where one tank gets contaminated somehow. Highly unlikely, but... I suppose I should really rethink as to WHY I run on one tank at a time.
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Old 09-15-2019, 06:34 PM   #13
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I was truly curious, not questioning your madness

I have two 170 gallon tanks, one on each side. If I ran off one side too long, I would look like a sail boat underway in a gale.
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Old 09-15-2019, 06:50 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by syjos View Post
I switch tanks every four hours and to display which side, I place a miniature brass Bruce anchor on the appropriate side of the compass.

I also record the tank switch in the fuel log with hours, estimated fuel consumed since last switch and current fuel levels.
A Bruce anchor! Are you crazy! Bruce anchors suck! I wouldnít let anything but a Rocha anchor on my boat. How do you expect an anchor to work without a roll bar? Another thing, how much chain do you have? Thatís not enough, what if you had to anchor in......

What? Tank reminder? Oh, never mind...
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Old 09-15-2019, 07:15 PM   #15
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With saddle tanks of 75-ish gallon capacity and a single engine on my small boat using 8-9 GPH, it would not take long for me to list badly. On my twin trawler, each engine drew from and returned to one of the two tanks on its side of the boat with the other tanks secured (port to stbd crossover was always closed) because they were all bottom draw where an accident could have seen all the fuel on one side of the boat (320 gallons) in the bilge.
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Old 09-15-2019, 08:25 PM   #16
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IIRC my water tanks have cross connections so you can pull from any one of the 4 of them. This can be done to fine tune trim, or if there is some other reason to isolate one tank. All 4 are 75 gal, for a total of 300 gal. Once I figured out what all the valves do, I opened them all, so I never need to adjust trim with the water tank levels. The two in the quarters are higher, tops just below the deck and the ones under the bed are lower, tops below the bottoms of the other 2. When the top of the bed tanks start oil canning, we are into those, so the sight tubes on the upper 2 in the lazarette are unnecessary. No sight tubes on the lower tanks, so keeping track of the no of days before the first sounds from the lower tanks works, assuming usage stays the same.
For fuel, there is a crossover line with a valve on it. IIRC it too remains open, though with twins it isn't nearly so critical as with a single. The genset pulls from Stb, the diesel stove from the P, so before solar panels, non-engine use was about the same. Now, not so much, so leaving the crossover open probably helps. I use my logbook, record hours of use, usually run at 2000rpm, so same per hr usage. When I will get a 1000l price discount, I will start thinking about fuelling. I used to have a stick, but it got so little use I got rid of it. My tanks hold 2600l, so I usually fuel at around 1/2 full. The biggest fuel load I have ever taken was about 1500l, several years ago.
I don't need gauges, for water or fuel.
I still need to keep my panel dusted, despite the lack of fuel or water gauges.
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Old 09-16-2019, 01:33 AM   #17
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This single-engined boat has four fuel tanks, two starboard and two port with 70-plus gallons each, each good for more than 35 hours. Every 24 hours away or every time taking the boat out, I check their levels. Normally select the tank with most fuel.
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Old 09-16-2019, 07:31 AM   #18
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No fuel balancing for me. 2 engines, 2 tanks. There is a crossover line in the engine feed lines, although I'm not sure it'll actually balance the tanks, just allow you to run an engine off the opposite tank if needed. Generator only draws from the port tank, but that's never enough to cause a meaningful imbalance. Plus, the boat lists slightly to port with everything full anyway, so that tank getting a little lower is fine.
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Old 09-16-2019, 07:48 AM   #19
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No fuel balancing for me. 2 engines, 2 tanks. There is a crossover line in the engine feed lines, although I'm not sure it'll actually balance the tanks, just allow you to run an engine off the opposite tank if needed. Generator only draws from the port tank, but that's never enough to cause a meaningful imbalance. Plus, the boat lists slightly to port with everything full anyway, so that tank getting a little lower is fine.
Same here but the Genny feeds from the starboard tank. The fuel gages are extremely accurate.
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Old 09-16-2019, 10:45 AM   #20
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Curious, why run off of one tank?

I have a single Lehman and two 300 gallon diesel tanks on either side of the engine.

If I draw from both tanks, the engine takes more fuel out of one side than the other due to differences in fuel hose lengths, restrictions from fittings etc. After 6 hours or thereabouts the boat will start listing to one side.

By switching tanks every 4 hours, I can maintain balance and monitor fuel levels. When I switch tank sides, the fuel return is also switched.

I tried a crossover and I found when traveling with a slight heel due to wind on the beam, for an extended time, that the fuel flowed to the low side creating imbalance.
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