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PostPosted: Jul 31st, '18, 12:42 
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Hello everyone on TSP - our first post :D

We have owned Ireland Dreamz since October Last year and have been blessed with some beautiful weekend weather since then. 4 overnighters at Dunk Island and last Saturday at the North Barnards. Our first boat and now the list of improvements/modifications is long and I would love to get some advice from experienced owners.

Currently she has the 2 x 25L standard fuel tanks located under the cockpit seating port and starboard as designed. There are 2 x 20L water bladders plumbed together sitting in the space under the forward dining seat on the starboard side. Refilling is with the garden hose into the boat until full. We are going to do some substantial 2-5 day cruising so want to optimize the space available and ease of refilling. Its a pain that there is no storage accessible from the cockpit. If we move the fuel storage there is some very handy space there !!!!

So I have explored the spaces available. Under the aft double bunk there is a space either side of the water ballast storage compartment that measures a minimum average 2.0M x 0.3M x 0.1M = 60L each side. Get 2 bladders made -fuel on one side, water on the other, both with filler hoses to outside the boat above the gunwale ?

I am putting it out there to your collective experience to give me advice as to whether this could work and what are the pitfalls/drawbacks.I am thinking ...............
- potential for fuel vapor below deck causing massive explosion and death and destruction ? Properly built and fitted I think the risk is minimal and you will smell any problem immediately.
- problems with uptake from the bladder to the outboard and using all the fuel ? When the motor is running and the boat is moving, that compartment slopes aft so it shouldn't be a problem
- these are not sealed compartments so not part of buoyancy
- I cant see any drawbacks for the water bladder

I already have a list of jobs moving cleats/pulleys/ropes to make her easier to sail.

And to add my 2 cents worth to the "MacGregor - love 'em or hate 'em" debate, I will describe last weekend to you ...........
Left Clump Pt boat ramp around 11:30am Saturday and sailed with 8-10kn ENE to Kent Island in the North Barnards doing 3-4kn. Saw a whale under cloudless blue skies. Air temp 29C - Water temp 22.8C. Watched near full moon rise over island at anchor. Left with land breeze WSW 6-8kn at 8:30am until it glassed out at 10:15
No problems - we can do 15kn back to the ramp and go home. We LOVE our boat - it is perfect for where we live and gives us sailing pleasure and freedom/flexibility

Cheers

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PostPosted: Jul 31st, '18, 18:30 
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Hi Belinda and David,

I do not have a Mac so my comments are framed in ignorance of your specific needs. As I see it you already have 25 lires x 2 of fuel in the cockpit. If you installed a fuel bladder under the aft bunk you will only gain another 10 litres of fuel. At present you most likely remove the tanks from the boat and fill them directly at the bowser and then the fuel tanks are replaced under the cockpit seats, out doors, where the fuel should be. I see very little benefit is gaining another 10 liters of fuel storage in the manner that you suggest. My boat has water storage under the VBerth bunk. It holds around 120 liters and it is very handy on long cruises. Water is filled from a lockable inlet located at the bow of the boat. To empty it I either use it or I pump it out with electric pump at the end of a cruise. I would rather carry extra water. When I need to carry extra fuel I usually take a 40 liter jerry-can and decant the fuel as needed.

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PostPosted: Jul 31st, '18, 20:05 
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Gday Ed - nice to hear from you and thanks for your thoughts. With the fuel, its not really about the extra capacity but more about being able to use that space to store fenders, ropes, stern/beach anchor, lifejackets etc instead of having them on the rear bunk

David

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PostPosted: Jul 31st, '18, 20:07 
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I believe the OP wants to reuse the cockpit lockers for outside storage and relocate the fuel into bladders .
Personally a big Nono as petrol has a low combustion point and is very volatile however with modern technology no doubt doable. There may also be issues with insurance.

BTW welcome to the forum.

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PostPosted: Jul 31st, '18, 20:43 
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Ahhh ...... thanks Tezza. Hadn't thought about the dreaded insurance implications

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PostPosted: Jul 31st, '18, 21:05 
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My boat does not have as much space as your Mac. David so storage is at a premium. I carry twenty liters of fuel in two tanks when I feel I need some extra fuel and they fit side by side inside one of the lockers in the cockpit. I only carry the larger jerrycan when cruising at far off places such as Fraser Island, the Whitsundays, Wilsons Promontory where fuel depots are far apart if they exist at all. I also manage to place ropes and other things in that same locker. I carry extra ropes in bins that slide under the space below the cockpit floor. From my experience any extra ropes needed when I beach the boat can be easily arranged before arriving at the designated beach. I usually have any needed ropes hanging from the pushpit hardware ready to be used. So I wonder if you may become a little more confident about what to have ready in the cockpit for use when beaching etc. I store both of my anchors in the bow anchor locker. If I need to deploy a stern anchor there is always plenty of time to fetch that after i reverse the boat to the beach. I sail mostly single handed. I just take my time.

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PostPosted: Aug 1st, '18, 16:49 
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Got a Maritime Safety Newsletter this morning which had a safety alert re Fuel tanks in it...
https://transportsafety.vic.gov.au/mari ... el%20tanks

Cheers...

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For this message the author MargGannet has received thanks: 2 Ireland Dreamz (Aug 1st, '18, 22:12), Wanton (Aug 1st, '18, 18:56)
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PostPosted: Aug 1st, '18, 18:57 
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MargGannet wrote:
Got a Maritime Safety Newsletter this morning which had a safety alert re Fuel tanks in it...
https://transportsafety.vic.gov.au/mari ... el%20tanks

Cheers...



Great and timely find Marg

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PostPosted: Aug 1st, '18, 22:08 
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Thank you Marg - that was a very timely coincidence. You are quite possibly a life saver ! The things I get from reading that are 1) Aluminium tanks corrode in the wrong environment 2) you need regular inspections 3) A petrol vapor alarm is a must

I am considering a bladder so 1) doesnt apply
I checked with my insurance broker who confirmed with Nautilus Marine that they were okay with it as a modification provided it was installed to regulations ( whatever they are - more reading required) and I give them photos.

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PostPosted: Aug 3rd, '18, 16:42 
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There are a number of solutions to this issue on the MacGregor Forum:

http://www.macgregorsailors.com/phpBB/index.php

They include the larger fuel tanks that can be fitted to the lockers with a bit of persuation (read small amount of grinding to squeeze in). From memory you can get a 45l tank in one side that would free up the other? Depends how much fuel you want to carry. I have seen a large professional tank installed below the cockpit with all appropriate vents etc as per a large motor cruiser - but I would still be hesitant about that.....

Why don't you fit a larger bladder under cockpit floor with a hose and proper deck filler cap? Even my 40 year old Hartley TS has this convenience!

PaulS

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PostPosted: Aug 6th, '18, 10:45 
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Thanks Paul - that's exactly what I want to do - "fit a bladder under cockpit floor with a hose and proper deck filler cap"

and I have been trying to register with the MacGregorSailors.com website but they have a problem with their Captcha thingy at the end of the registration process that says "reCAPTCHA V1 IS SHUTDOWN" but I can't email anyone to tell them because I'm not registered. You wouldn't be able to find me an email address would you please ?

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PostPosted: Aug 7th, '18, 09:00 
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Ireland Dreamz wrote:
Thanks Paul - that's exactly what I want to do - "fit a bladder under cockpit floor with a hose and proper deck filler cap"

and I have been trying to register with the MacGregorSailors.com website but they have a problem with their Captcha thingy at the end of the registration process that says "reCAPTCHA V1 IS SHUTDOWN" but I can't email anyone to tell them because I'm not registered. You wouldn't be able to find me an email address would you please ?



I have sent a message to the administrator, I vaguely remember having the same problem. PM me with your proposed user name for the site.


PaulS

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PostPosted: Aug 9th, '18, 08:48 
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Hi Belinda & David and welcome to the forum. You will find many member here with plenty of helpful thoughts and ideas and sometimes taking things into account that we have not thought about such as insurance etc.

A number of people have gone with the Aluminium internal fuel tank in the rear birth, not for me though due to safety implications and then needing to add bilge blowers and the constant worry about leakage.

Many people do long term cruising in their Macs in the USA, the preferred layout is to have a large water storage under the V birth, there is plenty of room under there and you should be able to get over 100 L under there without any issues, owners that have done this report that they think this helps the boat cut through the waves in rough conditions, personally I have never had a issue with the way she handles waves and chop.

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PostPosted: Aug 9th, '18, 09:52 
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Welcome back Mike - we have all missed you!

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PostPosted: Aug 9th, '18, 14:29 
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Ireland Dreamz wrote:
Gday Ed - nice to hear from you and thanks for your thoughts. With the fuel, its not really about the extra capacity but more about being able to use that space to store fenders, ropes, stern/beach anchor, lifejackets etc instead of having them on the rear bunk

David


Forgive me if this is a stupid idea, but doesn't the mac x already have a fantastic wet locker space ( the toilet) ? Surely things like pfd's / fenders etc could be stored in there in a way that is easilly moved when nature calls?

I'm just reflecting on why I never leave pfd's in my noelex cockpit locker - security + mould.

BTW , I have a 10 year olf fuel bladder that I use on motorbike trips - it's a very expensive turtle pack, and whilst it's seriously strong I would not be storing it inside the boat - it expands alarmingly when it gets hot and hoats get hot during summer.

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PostPosted: Aug 9th, '18, 20:40 
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Peter Yates wrote:
Welcome back Mike - we have all missed you!


Ahhh thanks Peter :oops:

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PostPosted: Aug 9th, '18, 20:51 
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pdandy wrote:
Forgive me if this is a stupid idea, but doesn't the mac x already have a fantastic wet locker space ( the toilet) ? Surely things like pfd's / fenders etc could be stored in there in a way that is easilly moved when nature calls?

I'm just reflecting on why I never leave pfd's in my noelex cockpit locker - security + mould.

BTW , I have a 10 year olf fuel bladder that I use on motorbike trips - it's a very expensive turtle pack, and whilst it's seriously strong I would not be storing it inside the boat - it expands alarmingly when it gets hot and hoats get hot during summer.


Your right Paul, I have put a couple of coat hook racks on the back of the head door for hanging lines and one of those seat back storage things on the front of the door, it keeps things close at hand to grab from the cockpit when you need them.

Attachment:
New-Arrival-Convenient-Car-Seat-Back-Organizer-Multi-Pocket-Storage-Bag-Box-Case.jpg_640x640.jpg
New-Arrival-Convenient-Car-Seat-Back-Organizer-Multi-Pocket-Storage-Bag-Box-Case.jpg_640x640.jpg [ 71.79 KiB | Viewed 607 times ]


Attachment:
coat hook.jpg
coat hook.jpg [ 32.05 KiB | Viewed 607 times ]

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PostPosted: Aug 14th, '18, 10:08 
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Thank you all for your ideas, thoughts and suggestions. There will be no fuel stored below decks. The wise brains have prevailed and even though the risk can be almost totally eliminated, s**t happens !!
I will be using some of those other tips with storage/hooks etc - in the meantime, I better finish replacing the seal in the hydraulic steering cylinder so we can go sailing this weekend. The forecast is fine, sunny and 5-15

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PostPosted: Aug 15th, '18, 08:58 
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I think I got these bags from Bunnings, screwed in snap hooks to underside of shelf and snap eyelet in.

https://photos.app.goo.gl/syUHuaCA5bR9BKVC9


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