Monday, January 17, 2011

Fuel tank ripout and installation- ready to start

Talofa Lee's in-keel fuel tank
The fuel tank on the Norsea is in the keel under the engine.  You can see the tank in the photo (the hammer is laying on the tank top). The forward end of the tank is constrained by a fiberglass bulkhead.  Two part expanding foam is poured around and under the tank to hold it in place. Epoxy is poured on the top of the foam to seal the top. The shaft has to be removed (or pulled all the way aft) and the athwartships engine room access door facing above the shaft flange has to be cut to allow the tank to be jacked out after the foam is dug out and the fiberglass bulkhead is removed.

Tensie Mae's fuel tank removal
This picture shows Tensie Mae's fuel tank partially
"dug out" last year.

Tensie Mae's fuel tank
almost ready for jacking out

This shows the fiberglass bulkhead forward of Tensie Mae's tank almost completely removed.  Removing the bulkhead is the hardest part of the removal.  It is tough and the work area is small.  I had to break it out one small piece at a time using small saws, pry bars and hammers.

Tensie Mae's original fuel tank
This is the tank after removal.  The tank walls had holes ranging in size from silver dollars to pin holes, and the walls were very thin and porous over much of the surface.

Tensie Mae's new fuel tank

This is the new tank prior to installation.  It is encased in epoxied fiberglass cloth to prevent any moisture from reaching the aluminum tank sides and causing corrosion.

Tensie Mae's fuel tank--finished at last!
And this is the finished product on Tensie Mae.  If I can work hard enough, and long enough, and don't run into any snags, this is what Talofa Lee's tank top will look like in about three weeks.

No comments:

Post a Comment