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2002 2520xl fuel tank replacement

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Woodytoofl

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Hi team, been a while!

I am afraid the dreaded day has come. I have been noticing fuel smell after fueling for a while, but it went away pretty quickly. I had replaced my fuel sender and gasket when I repowered, along with fuel hoses, new racor etc. but not my filler and vent hoses. I figured that was probably my issue and actually ordered new and had them in the workshop for my next maintenance action.

i had the calling last week to make a long run in the Gulf of Mexico to chase the kingfish and cobia bite, and ran 40 miles to the craig wreck. It was snotty, and we took a pretty good pounding on the way out. I had 120 gallons of fuel in the box when we left. we did not notice anything on the way out and fishing, but on the way back home I got a strong fuel smell in the pilot house, and saw some fuel in the bilge. Long story short, we flushed the bilge down hard with the wash down and a ton of dawn, scooped things out as best as possible, opened all ports to vent the fumes, and made our way home without issues.

Back on the lift, I pulled the deck hatches, removed the filler and vent hoses, sealed stuff off and did the ballon trick for a pressure test... it was a fail ... i borrowed a neighbors inspection camera thing and could see wet on top of the tank in the port back corner, and where liquid had pooled and was dripping out the hose port into the bilge.

time to roll the sleeves up and pull the tank I am afraid. I took a picture of the tank label, I have the 173 gallon RDS tank.

9AC6813F-FCB4-4016-B94B-A35E7E2D3171.jpeg
I called RDS and they are backlogged and will not be making any custom runs until spring. They recommended that I contact EZell industries (perry fl), and I had a friend recommend custom marine fuel tanks in Jupiter for build quotes. I wrote to parker and they gave me drawings for my stringer layout and the fuel tank. for both quotes I asked for 3/16 aluminum, and epoxy coated.

so that is where I am now, awaiting the estimates, thinking through logistics (emptying and storing fuel, hoisting the tank etc) and laying out deck cuts and parts Orders.

if anyone has another fabricator recommendation it would be welcome - I am in the Florida keys, so a Florida source is desirable. Will keep you posted on my adventure.

it is too bad, the fishing now is off the charts, and I am going to miss it ... :(

bo
 

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Woodytoofl

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Oh - while I am at it. Deck plates and the bilge hatch. Beckson? They still the go to?
 

warthog5

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Brent.....They stick up about 3/4in....Yes they are toe stubbers and coolers don't sit flat on top of them.....obviously.
 

Woodytoofl

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Yea - I saw the clearance concerns with the Armstrong pie plates. That is a show stopper for me. I do like the t-h marine product - they have a pry out “sure-seal” that the lid covers the screws completely. I think I will go for another beckson bilge hatch, I replaced mine 10 years or so ago, and it has been ok - to be honest I don’t like the latch handles - they are recessed so water collects there, then mildew sets in - will take a pic.

4E228C3E-D3B2-447B-9CB9-754A66EF125D.jpeg
 
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Woodytoofl

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I did get tank quotes back. Both shops ezell industries and custom marine fuel tanks. I need to lay the bids out side by side but bottom line - 3/16 aluminum, epoxy coated, 2 baffles, sending unit, shipped price ~ $ 3,000 - 3300, 30 day fabrication time. That is $19 per gallon - ouch...
 

jpg1969

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I'm also in the process of replacing a tank for a 2002 2520. I am paying about $12/gal for the new tank (also 3/16", epoxy coated) and they (Patriot Marine Fabricating) will turn around quickly for the installer. They are located in southern NJ so it may be a showstopper for you with freight costs but can't hurt to ask.
Here's the Patriot Marine Fabricating website - well respected in the area:
 
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Andy

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Yea - I saw the clearance concerns with the Armstrong pie plates. That is a show stopper for me. I do like the t-h marine product - they have a pry out “sure-seal” that the lid covers the screws completely. I think I will go for another beckson bilge hatch, I replaced mine 10 years or so ago, and it has been ok - to be honest I don’t like the latch handles - they are recessed so water collects there, then mildew sets in - will take a pic.

View attachment 27075
Agree with not liking the hatches with latches like that. As you mentioned, water settles there, and when the water freezes I have to melt the ice before we can access the battery switch! We don't get bad freezes often here in eastern NC, but since we boat year-round, the frozen latches are a P I T A all too often...
 
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warthog5

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Yea - I saw the clearance concerns with the Armstrong pie plates. That is a show stopper for me.
The Armstrongs are Waterproof......The rest are not..... Look at their display ad...They show them mounted in the side of a aquarium. Yes they are that good with proper install.
 

Woodytoofl

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Update time - as usual I had a big house project I had to complete. Now attention to the job.

fuel tank on order - expect it in a couple weeks.

ordered my glass, resin, coosa board and supplies, will pick it up next Friday in pompano beach. The trade off of living in the keys, I have to hit Miami/lauderdale to get anything special at a decent price. Meritt supply is the shop, coosa distributor, really good prices and inventory.

Cut the deck today and pulled the tank. Sounds easy I had to cut the bottom of the steps on the side of the pilot house, the tank is a lot further forward than it looked on paper. Will be a challenge to match well, but I will figure it out when I get there.

not much space between the tank and the coffin, and there were 2 supports
than ran fore and aft under the floor over the tank. They were butted into the stringers on either side of the tank. The floor was screwed down to them as well ... :(

Found the hole, it was corrosion/electrolysis call it what you will, stern, starboard side. 1/4 or so, only leaked when pretty full.

tank was foamed in hard. Bottom and sides. Got it out with a Come-along. Will clean it out and inspect tomorrow, but the floor and stringers look tight, no signs of rot.
DC8E0F34-ED33-4972-A85A-0D1C7EBFA251.jpeg4A166ACC-06A7-413D-AF25-71944CBD1D77.jpeg59ABC657-D278-42BF-BB6F-24208C6E9637.jpeg
DC8E0F34-ED33-4972-A85A-0D1C7EBFA251.jpeg
 

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Andy

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Posted pics of my tank taken out this week. Wicked pitting and three holes.
We see a lot of posts about the deterioration of Parker fuel tanks. Do NOT assume this is only common to older Parker boats. It also common to Grady-White, C-Hawks, Marine Traders and countless other brands...
 

Woodytoofl

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We see a lot of posts about the deterioration of Parker fuel tanks. Do NOT assume this is only common to older Parker boats. It also common to Grady-White, C-Hawks, Marine Traders and countless other brands...
It was all corrosion/electrolysis on mine, 20 years (almost) in the making. I just wish I didn’t have to cut the floor up to fix. Also, the tank going back will have the benefit of technology. 2 times thicker, and epoxy coated.

did not do much today other than clean up and inspect. The old tank was foamed in hard, and it looks like there are two “ports” on the forward bottom portion of the coffin. The holes were stuffed with rolled up paper. It looks like the got the foam in under the tank through those ports at the factory.

todays pics . D3F3DB05-C979-462C-A6B8-3281C4C0FF37.jpeg45787D6E-FD18-42D5-A8D9-445B08889FA2.jpeg1F2FD4C3-1E82-4FE4-B3BB-6EFCEE030FF9.jpeg
 

Andy

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It was all corrosion/electrolysis on mine, 20 years (almost) in the making. I just wish I didn’t have to cut the floor up to fix. Also, the tank going back will have the benefit of technology. 2 times thicker, and epoxy coated.

did not do much today other than clean up and inspect. The old tank was foamed in hard, and it looks like there are two “ports” on the forward bottom portion of the coffin. The holes were stuffed with rolled up paper. It looks like the got the foam in under the tank through those ports at the factory.

todays pics . View attachment 27504View attachment 27505View attachment 27506
I'm sorry to see you (and all the others) having to go through this; but you're doing a beautiful job! A local friend of mine replaced the tank on his 21' Privateer last year. It was a mess! It seems all 1990's era Privateers need the tanks replaced.
 

capecodparker2320

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Woodytoofl,

How did you attach the come-along to the tank? Can't see it well from the pics. On my tank the only opening in the tank is for the fuel sender unit.
 

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