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Old 07-07-2017, 11:31 AM   #1
Kip Anderson's Avatar
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Fuel tank removal from marine trader 34 dc with cummins engine

Unfortunately faced with a leaking fuel tank and its time to replace. I am hoping to hear how you removed your tanks with this specific model. Also, is there a specific sawzall blade or cutting wheel that is preferred when tanks are cut?

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Old 07-07-2017, 09:36 PM   #2
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Sorry, can't help.
The boatyard removed the engine and transmission then took out both tanks intact. They were sent to a fabricator to be duplicated in aluminum. No problems refitting.

Al Johnson
34' Marine Trader
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Old 07-09-2017, 06:22 PM   #3
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Kip good luck with your project, I would use short blades, so as not to hit the hull or anything else under the tank that you won,t be able to see. Get a lot of blades, and good eye and ear protection. Are your tanks 150 gal? What type tanks are you planning on installing? '' have fun its a boat''
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Old 07-09-2017, 08:11 PM   #4
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Just have removed both fuel tanks from outboard of our twin Perkins 6.354. My son did the first with my cheerleading. The Marina did the second with a primary and a helper.

At my suggestion, my son did the first with a 4-1/2" angle grinder equipped with cutoff wheels. He cut 1/3 of the face out, then cut the first third of the tank. He had to cut a slice in the tank, horizontally, to collapse it in height before it would make it out over the stringer and the exhaust. He then crawled into the space where the 1/3 came out and cut out the baffle. Then cut the second third from the remaining 1/3 and cut it in half horizontally. Those two sixths came out without much effort. He then cut the remaining third in half horizontally and those two sixths came out. Generally, the loose pieces would cheerfully catch on each other and fight him mightily!

These TTs have got the wood frame with 1/4" underlayment plywood and ceiling tile coverings. We removed all the coverings but left some of the wood frame in place.

The Marina fellow took all the wood framing out which allowed the tank to slide away from the side of the boat. He nibbled pieces of tank out using a Sawzall and sabre saw. He did some with the cutoff wheel. When he'd finally got the aft 1/3 out he cut the remaining 2/3s horizontally and they came out. Because he removed the cover framing, his helper could watch to see where the Sawzall blade was going. No damage was done to the boat.

The original tanks were about 180 gal., ea. We're putting back tanks that are about 80 gal ea., thus the chatter elsewhere on this Forum about range and fuel use. See my posts on the subject.
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Old 07-09-2017, 08:30 PM   #5
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Are you using plastic tanks for the replacement? It sounds like you have this project under control. I would use off the shelf Ronco or other manufactures tanks for replacements. Especially because you and your son are DIY types.
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Old 07-09-2017, 09:54 PM   #6
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I had the best success with a circular saw and abrasive wheels like these.

The nice thing about the circular saw is you can adjust the depth as not to damage the hull etc. Keep the old blades once the wear down to almost nothing and put them in an angle grinder to get into the tight places.

I was cutting through black iron tanks and a saws all was not cutting it. Even tried a torch with wet towels behind the tanks, but the circular saw worked best.

If you're cutting aluminum it should go quickly. Good luck.
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Old 07-10-2017, 05:17 AM   #7
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One hand Rigid sawzall from Home Depot and Milwaukee Diablo metal cutting blades.

Went through about 10 blades to cut up 2-200 gallon very thick steel tanks into about 6 pieces each inclding many baffle cuts.

Took about a day per tank with lots of breaks.
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Old 07-10-2017, 09:07 AM   #8
Kip Anderson's Avatar
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Al - do you know if they completely removed engine from boat or just lifted and moved to back of main cabin? I believe current tanks are 150-175 gallons each and I plan on replacing with smaller tanks. Contacted several area surveyors and suggest stock premade plastic but I haven't made a decision yet between custom aluminum or plastic.

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