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Old 01-09-2016, 09:52 AM   #41
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For my two cents: Knowing how much fuel you have, how much you actually need, watching the fuel meter and NOT overfilling the tank would go a long way to keeping fuel IN the tank as opposed to overboard.

The other two cents is: The tool uses the baffles to collect the diesel so once you see the overflow you can stop filling to allow it to flow back into the tank.

The problem is.... The tank vent is lower that the fill. when the fill hose is overflowing, It has been my experience that the vent is overflowing as well. So This device is solely going to force the fuel out the vent, instead of the fill on deck.
That is your experience with your boat. My experience with my boat is very different. My boat will not take fuel from most diesel pumps when the handle is held fully open. It backs up and comes out the fuel fill and spills. I have to hold the nozzle handle part way open and if I don't get it just right, I get the backup and the spill. Even when I hear it coming and shut the nozzle off, I get the spill.


As far as knowing how much fuel you have, how much you actually need, watching the fuel meter and NOT overfilling the tank, that's easy to say but not so easily done in practice. The average fuel gauge (I have two tanks and two gauges) on a boat is bot accurately calibrated in gallons or any other measurement. Mine has lines for empty. 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, and full. The needle will continue past the full mark if I keep adding fuel. The gauges are useless for filling the tank, they only let you know when you are close. They cannot tell me how much I need.


Very rarely, in my experience am I able to see the actual pump (on the dock) to know how much fuel I have taken on.


As a practical matter, the number of hours run since my last fueling gives me the closest indication of how much fuel I can take but only if I filled up the last time.
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Old 01-09-2016, 02:27 PM   #42
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Hi BandB,

yeah for sure re: id and correct problem. As I said I'm going to pull out the tanks in the next week or so to fix a leak (that seems to have started on or around Xmas day - merry Christmas shufti!). I'll be investigating the breather situation when I do - haven't been able to as yet then as tanks are in the way and bulkead the other side. FWIW, both tanks have same 'splash back' problem so I'm assuming some sort of design flaw. Are you (or anyone) able to offer opinions on how the ideal breather system is setup?
I'm not able to offer much in the way of help other than just the simple straight and direct hoses of adequate size and good venting.
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Old 01-09-2016, 04:45 PM   #43
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............... Are you (or anyone) able to offer opinions on how the ideal breather system is setup?
Someone mentioned somewhere that the vent is primarily to allow air to enter the tank as fuel is removed underway. The vent line should be as short as possible and as close as vertical as possible with no horizontal run or downward loop where fuel or condensation can collect. Ideally, the line would run to above the actual vent and then down to the vent to prevent rain and spray from entering the fuel system.

The fuel filler and hose should be as large as practical to allow venting while filling. I think this is the problem I have with my boat but replacing the hoses and fill fitting would be a bigger problem than dealing with the splash back.
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Old 01-09-2016, 06:59 PM   #44
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...My boat will not take fuel from most diesel pumps when the handle is held fully open. It backs up and comes out the fuel fill and spills. I have to hold the nozzle handle part way open and if I don't get it just right, I get the backup and the spill. Even when I hear it coming and shut the nozzle off, I get the spill...
Either I'm very unlucky, or this is very common.

My theory, and no doubt some physicist will correct me, is that it's air being forced down the fill hose by the flow of fuel. Even if the vent is working, and even if it's sized to keep up with the flow of fuel entering, that air entrained in the flow down the hose and into the tank will want to surge back out when you stop the flow. Along with all the fuel above it.

My solution has been to stop the flow before that happens, and let the pressure equalize for a few seconds before starting up again. Some boats can go 10-15 gallons at a time. I had one boat that wanted to be "burped" every 5 gallons. You'll know when you get it wrong.

I ended up buying the CleanWay fill device. I won't have a chance to use it until Spring. It seems very well made. It does constrict the filler pipe quite a bit. Maybe that will help by limiting how much air can go in. Or maybe it'll make things worse, by not letting as much air out.
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Old 01-13-2016, 01:16 AM   #45
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I:ve dealt with two boats that blew back covering me and the deck with fuel. One gasoline, the other diesel.
Both had faulty vent lines.

The vent lines are supposed to allow air in as the fuel is drawn by the engine-yes. The vent line is also supposed to allow air to escape as fuel is loaded into the tank. Air should NOT have to escape back up the fill pipe. That is a recipe for disaster.

Problems can come from:
--too small a vent line.
-- too long or a badly routed vent line although not common.
--a kinked vent line.
--a degrading vent line where some of the ID has delaminated and blocks air.
--a line which has a dip in it producing an effect like the P trap in the sink drains.
--insects building nests in the vent hose itself or the screen which is part of the vent fitting. Especially gasoline boats since many diesel boats do not have to have that screen. But bugs can still cause trouble.

The gas boat was a builder blunder. They dropped the deck on top of the vent completely closing it.

Our current boat, diesel, needed both fill and vent lines replaced due to kinking, degrading, poor quality vent hose, and bends that were too sharp.
Decent hoses and lengths and some fittings to get the fill and tank ports aimed in the general direction of each other took care of the problem.

The only trouble now is if I don't pay attention, but at least it is now a spit at the vent, not an outright blowback.

Yes, diesel is terrible for foaming but even so should not blow back unless there is a problem. A really high capacity pump with most recreational boats small fill lines may cause trouble but even so usually the problem is foaming.

If you constantly have a very slow fill or blowbacks then something is wrong. Take a good look. I can imagine that some boats may be hard to change. For many it may be just new hoses with some serious attention paid to routing and details.
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Old 01-13-2016, 08:53 AM   #46
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--insects building nests in the vent hose itself or the screen which is part of the vent fitting. Especially gasoline boats since many diesel boats do not have to have that screen. But bugs can still cause trouble.
C - Why do you think that many diesel boats do not have vent line screen at hull-side entry point? It's simply a good measure for insect deterrence... spiders and the like. Is it that the foam action of diesel upon surge into vent line has many manufacturers not installing screen for fear of temporary foam blockage at screen. In diesel boat from years ago we were careful to make sure it had screen in vent line at it's shrouded entry through hull. Of course, we changed engines from gas to diesel... and, therein is probably the reason we found it already screened!
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Old 01-13-2016, 09:57 AM   #47
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The gas boat was a builder blunder. They dropped the deck on top of the vent completely closing it.

.
When we were in the gas boat world of the lake and small runabouts, cramped and blocked and too small and all other vent line problems were far more common in new boats than they ever should be. I'd assumed most larger boats, trawler types, would have fewer problems in that regard, but from the number here talking of problems I was clearly wrong.

A properly functioning fuel system should have no problem. If my system wouldn't handle the highest speed pumps I encounter, then I'd not give up until the root cause was fixed. It's way too frustrating to me to have to continually deal with overflow of any sort or to have to fill at something other than the maximum pump speed. While the fuel spill preventer is a nice concept, it is just addressing the symptom, not the disease. It should in normal use stay completely dry.
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Old 01-13-2016, 10:24 AM   #48
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When we were in the gas boat world of the lake and small runabouts, cramped and blocked and too small and all other vent line problems were far more common in new boats than they ever should be. I'd assumed most larger boats, trawler types, would have fewer problems in that regard, but from the number here talking of problems I was clearly wrong.

A properly functioning fuel system should have no problem. If my system wouldn't handle the highest speed pumps I encounter, then I'd not give up until the root cause was fixed. It's way too frustrating to me to have to continually deal with overflow of any sort or to have to fill at something other than the maximum pump speed. While the fuel spill preventer is a nice concept, it is just addressing the symptom, not the disease. It should in normal use stay completely dry.
Excellent point!

How many cars/trucks need a fuel spill preventer??? I'd say virtually none. So... why can not all boat builders practice the fairly simple basic physics in design to make sure there is never any blow back to their fuel tanks??
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Old 01-13-2016, 05:42 PM   #49
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That is your experience with your boat. My experience with my boat is very different. My boat will not take fuel from most diesel pumps when the handle is held fully open. It backs up and comes out the fuel fill and spills
My experience is based upon sitting at a fuel dock observing many boats doing exactly what you do when you fill yours up. The correct method is to NOT fill to overflow. But to 95% (or so) then stop.
If yours is overflowing regularly hen you have a blocked fill or vent line. It is possible that your tanks have improperly baffled (meaning not enough lightening holes inside the tank) to allow the top of the diesel to find it's level in the tank quickly. (are they new(er)?) But generally the hoses and vents are the issue. Does one side burp more than the other? What size are your vent lines? In addition to the improperly installed/damaged thought, I bet they are too small.

This 'overflow' fitting is a stop gap measure to remedy either incorrect installations, poorly designed fuel tanks or failed vent lines.

One of the issues with these 'high capacity' fuel pumps is the diesel froths when it flows so quickly. Could it be the simple solution is to just not peg the nozzle open all the way? If you know the fuel fill is directly over the tank with no bends, then open it up. If you have a hose with multiple bends then you simply can't open the nozzle all the way. It doesn't matter if you have the adapter on or not. I don't recall the amount it holds in the baffles, but I doubt it's enough to ameliorate more than a quart overflow before it becomes a spill.
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Old 01-13-2016, 08:43 PM   #50
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My experience is based upon sitting at a fuel dock observing many boats doing exactly what you do when you fill yours up. The correct method is to NOT fill to overflow. But to 95% (or so) then stop.
If yours is overflowing regularly hen you have a blocked fill or vent line. It is possible that your tanks have improperly baffled (meaning not enough lightening holes inside the tank) to allow the top of the diesel to find it's level in the tank quickly. (are they new(er)?) But generally the hoses and vents are the issue. Does one side burp more than the other? What size are your vent lines? In addition to the improperly installed/damaged thought, I bet they are too small.

This 'overflow' fitting is a stop gap measure to remedy either incorrect installations, poorly designed fuel tanks or failed vent lines.

One of the issues with these 'high capacity' fuel pumps is the diesel froths when it flows so quickly. Could it be the simple solution is to just not peg the nozzle open all the way? If you know the fuel fill is directly over the tank with no bends, then open it up. If you have a hose with multiple bends then you simply can't open the nozzle all the way. It doesn't matter if you have the adapter on or not. I don't recall the amount it holds in the baffles, but I doubt it's enough to ameliorate more than a quart overflow before it becomes a spill.
Both sides are the same and I don't think both sides would have blocked vents. Trying to hold the nozzle part way open is very difficult and gives me hand cramps. Most of the pumps are designed to fill large tanks quickly. Mine only hold 45 gallons each.

I believe it may truly be a design flaw but it's something I cannot change easily, if at all. I can't change the size of the tank fittings. It's something I have to deal with on an otherwise well designed and built boat that meets my needs.

The spill preventer arrived a couple days ago and it seems well made. I won't have a chance to try it until May at the earliest.
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Old 01-13-2016, 08:46 PM   #51
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Excellent point!

How many cars/trucks need a fuel spill preventer??? I'd say virtually none. So... why can not all boat builders practice the fairly simple basic physics in design to make sure there is never any blow back to their fuel tanks??
How many land based gas/diesel stations have high speed pumps?

Most cars hold 16 -25 gallons. Many boats hold hundreds of gallons.

I know of one marina that has a pump slow enough that I could just open the nozzle all the way and pump without difficulty.
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Old 01-13-2016, 08:56 PM   #52
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How many land based gas/diesel stations have high speed pumps?

Most cars hold 16 -25 gallons. Many boats hold hundreds of gallons.

I know of one marina that has a pump slow enough that I could just open the nozzle all the way and pump without difficulty.
Wifey B: I'm just picturing someone filling their car with a 200 gallon per minute pump. 5 seconds? I don't think so. I think you'd have a mess, a big mess.
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Old 01-13-2016, 09:05 PM   #53
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C - Why do you think that many diesel boats do not have vent line screen at hull-side entry point? It's simply a good measure for insect deterrence... spiders and the like. Is it that the foam action of diesel upon surge into vent line has many manufacturers not installing screen for fear of temporary foam blockage at screen. In diesel boat from years ago we were careful to make sure it had screen in vent line at it's shrouded entry through hull. Of course, we changed engines from gas to diesel... and, therein is probably the reason we found it already screened!

My understanding is the explosive potential of gasoline. If a spark occurred near the vent there could be a big problem. The screen will quench any flame that occurs from that spark so it cannot propagate into the vent line.

You have the same kind of screen, different mesh of course, on the gas engine intake in case of a backfire. The screen quenches the flame.

Since diesel does not have that same explosive nature the screen can be omitted.

As a note. When I was setting up my holding tank the vent lines were also required to have a screen. Methane is explosive.


As for my boat when I was done with the repairs to the diesel tanks I could go to the commercial marine vendors and use their intermediate size nozzle, 1 1/2". The barge had even bigger nozzles but those were for tugs, large fishboats and the like where they literally took on a few thousand gallons and did not want to wait unnecessarily. The foaming caused me to have to shut down early to allow the foam to collapse but there was no more blow back. Of course most vendors don't have those big nozzles, just the same size as the land stations for gasoline although some do have a higher capacity pump.
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Old 01-14-2016, 07:10 AM   #54
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When you go to a marina ASK them if they have high capacity diesel pumps. Then ask if they have one that isn't high capacity. Use the low capacity pump if they have one. Most places that cater to offshore SF and the fuel guzzler crowd have high capacity pumps. Places that cater to trawlers and sailboats usually don't have these upgraded pumps.
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Old 01-15-2016, 12:12 PM   #55
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...................... Of course most vendors don't have those big nozzles, just the same size as the land stations for gasoline although some do have a higher capacity pump.
In my experience, the nozzles for diesel (at marinas) are a larger diameter than the ones at land based stations.

The product in question here comes with adapters for different diameter boat fuel inlets and two adapters for pump nozzles. A smaller one for land based fuel nozzles and a larger one for marina pump nozzles. The instructions mention this.
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Old 11-27-2017, 06:26 PM   #56
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I am more concerned about capturing the overflow. I had 2 that worked on the N46 but would not work on the AT.
I had a bunch of stuff that could not be adapted to the AT soooo, I took it all up to Chapman in Stuart and donated it. Got a nice write off too.
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Old 11-27-2017, 06:48 PM   #57
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Fuel spill preventer that is time proven is available for a limited time only. Get yours today before they are all gone.
The failsafe unit has several pieces.
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