Hi All – I wanted to share these photos of starboard water tank removal. The aluminum tanks from 1979 appear to be structurally sound but are a) a terrible choice of material for water tanks and b) scaly and just nasty on the inside. I think a proper cleaning would require the top to be cut off. I plan to repeat this removal process on the port side. I’m not sure the v-berth tank will come out in one piece, so still thinking about that one. I ordered 2 Plastimo 52 gallon bladder tanks, which are on the way. I’m still contemplating roto-molded polyethylene, as I would prefer a rigid tank (not sure why – I’ve just never used a bladder tank). So, does anyone have a drawing of the original tanks? I suppose I could measure it now that it is out, but it seems like a complicated shape to describe in numbers with no drawing. Has anyone sourced new tanks and willing to recommend a supplier? Has anyone removed the tank under the V-berth?
Also, as an aside, whoever has hull #80, I think I got your tank. There is a big #80 scrawled on the bottom of the tank – hopefully you got the better ones – but they are now available at a very reasonable price if you want to pick them up in MA….:-))
i have hull #80, i have plastic tanks which i always assumed we installed by a previous owner. apparently they were installed in build of boat!
Spell Bound #80
Hey Paul, plastic is good!! Any idea who made them? Mine had a tag that could be seen from the access panel under the settee cushion. Thx, Ben
not sure i will be down on boat in a couple weeks will check it out. my westerbeke 60 decided to become a 3 cylinder engine instead of 4! found a w60 with 950 hrs on it in Ft Lauderdale having it shipped north now and will put all upgrades on my engine on newer one and plug back in boat hopefully all done before end of june, then back up north for rest of summer.
Update: I got the port tank out today with only minor breakage of wood pieces and trim that hold it in. On a whim, I called Florida Marine Tank (FMT) and amazingly they still had the drawing (pencil on velum) from 1977 – and the woman I spoke with, Daniela, actually got it in her hand in just minutes – WOW! Unfortunately, they do not work in polyethylene but they will replicate the tanks in aluminum ($1,020 per tank) or stainless (double that). I will likely just take the tanks to a company in Maine (Triple M Plastics) that will recreate them in poly for closer to $850 per tank. Expensive still but preferable to aluminum in my mind.
As for the bow tank, I think I’m going to convert that into the chain locker. The boat sits bow down anyway so not filling that tank with water will help. I received the Plastimo bladder tanks today and they seem reasonably rugged. I’m thinking I might just install them in the cockpit lockers, which will still leave plenty of room for fenders and tons of stuff since the lockers are enormous. When heading off on longer trips the bladders will hold 104 gallons on top of the 120 gallons in the settee tanks – should be plenty. Any reactions to this plan?
Also, at the risk of putting you to sleep, it’s been a big year for Papaya and since I’m semi-retired I’ve spent the last 2 months replacing the autopilot, speed, depth, wind instrument, rewired mast (including coax for the VHF), cleaned up a bunch of shoddy wiring (under the cockpit floor was the worst place to work), replaced the pedestal guard, added a Raymarine Axiom 9 chartplotter and the autopilot control to a navpod at the helm, rebuilt the entire poorly constructed (and dangerous in my opinion) propane system, freed up all of the seacocks and replaced or reinstalled as needed, installed a Dickinson propane cabin heater, replace the stuffing box with a PSS dripless shaft seal, replaced the cutlass bearing (learned some good tricks here), had the shaft machined and re-threaded and installed an autostream feathering prop, and finally tackled disassembly, cleaning, and re-packing the rudder stuffing box (old packing looked original – who knows) with the rudder in place – that is a no-fun job but I will be very pleased to get rid of that leak. This has all probably been a couple of hundred hours but satisfying in itself. I’ll be tying up some loose ends on these projects and then painting the bottom and waxing the topsides – launch date in Mattapoisett, MA is June 18 or 19. The boat is currently at Triad if anyone wants to see any of the above.
Best to all and cheers!
I had my custom holding tank, 35 gallons, made by Miller Plastics in Burgettstown, PA. They did a great job and the dimensions (which were critical) came out exactly on the money. Very pleased with the product and the support I received. The tanks were made of Copoly Polypropylene material. I can recommend this company
Blue Moon, #189