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Monday, January 24, 2011

Fuel System Update

So we last left the fuel system when I was just starting to install the hoses. I was using standard automotive fuel hose. Then my wife and I had a conversation that went something like

"No, I want marine grade hose", she said.

"Ok, but it will be more expensive", I said.

"Thats ok. It needs to be marine grade."

I said, "well, I want to use brass flare fittings."

"Barbs and hose clamps are cheaper!", she said.

"So is automotive fuel hose!"

In the end, she got the marine grade fuel hose, and I got the brass flare fittings.

The hose was out of stock with my supplier, so I put a 50 foot roll on back order. I waited... and waited... and waited... Finally two months later, I called my supplier to ask what was up. The customer service rep looked up my order, put me on hold for ten minutes, came back and said "We will get it next week so you should see it by next Friday." I took that to mean that they forgot about the order. No big deal, it is not like there is never anything to do on this project.
All hoses leading to the supply and return manifolds.
So this last weekend I finished installing the hoses Now this is just the plumbing between five fuel tanks and the filters. I need to cut the hose to the proper length for each hose run, install a flare fitting on the end, thread the hose through the bulkhead, hose clamp one end to the existing barb fitting on the fuel tank, and thread the flare fitting on the manifold side. Five tanks, two hoses each (supply and return) means making up ten hoses.
One side of the return hoses.
Let me just say that this hose is a PITA to work with. It is thick rubber inner wall, jacketed with a fine stainless steel mesh, and a tough plastic outer skin. Certainly more durable than plain automotive hose, and harder to cut. You need a sharp metal cutting blade for your sawzall. If it is dull, it will fray the stainless steel, making it harder to install the flare fittings, while sharp metal strands will likely give you puncture and bleed annoyingly. I used the "field replaceable" end fittings that do not require any special crimping tools. If any reader is thinking about using this hose, and you have access to a crimping tool for the end fittings, USE IT! The field replaceable fittings are somewhat of a pain if you have never installed them before (how long should one attempt to thread something before realizing it is reverse threaded?)

Anyway, I used every single inch of the $400 50 foot roll of hose (I suspect $200 of that price is for the "USCG TYPE A1 FUEL HOSE" markings every foot).
Plumbing to the day tanks

The next step is getting one of the FilterBOSS filter assemblies, installing it, dumping 20-30 gallons of diesel in the tanks, and circulating it through the plumbing to check for leaks.

2 comments:

Allan S said...

Beautiful job!

The Incredible Hull said...

Outstanding. Ref. using the better quality hose. I never understand why people skimp on better quality stuff (within reason) when you are installing stuff that has to last 20 years.