Monday, May 20, 2013

Crap! Alberg 30 Holding Tank

To recap since my last post: Finished up the spring semester at school, started my new job and finished some much needed yard work around the house.  I have been trying to get some sailing in but have been out only once. The weather this season has been anything but good for sailing.
I had started a v-berth project a while back and have been making progress to getting that completed. One of the major hurdles has been a building a new holding tank. When we purchased Sal she had only a 6 gallon holding tank. We quickly found out how inadequate that was for two people. Not only did it reek something awful....but it was a plastic tank that had seen better days.
I searched all the options for a new tank. I looked at many pre-fabbed tanks but didn't find any that fit into the area where Sal's holding tank was designed to be, which is quite an oddly shaped space. I finally decided to make one myself. I've always enjoyed fabricating items I've needed when I couldn't find them anywhere else. Given my budget, I decided to give an epoxy/plywood tank a try. From all the reports and reading I did, it seemed
 like a very easy build and if done right would work quite well. Since I had just about all the materials, this option seemed like the best.
Oddly shaped holding tank area, it follows the curve of her keel and creates a sharp angle

 Started by cutting rough shapes of the area and laying them in place
 Next, I taped the pieces to hold in place while I laid some epoxy. I lined the space with wax paper in case of any spills or leaks

Brought basic form home to make a box, used thickened epoxy on all seams

Test fit, so far so good

Here is the finished inside, fiberglass tape and thickened West System on all seams and 5 coats of epoxy

Using tension straps to secure and glue the lid on, I covered the outside of the tank with 2 layers of fiberglass cloth

All the access holes cut, made a few boo boos but epoxy mistakes are very easy to fix
 Finished tank waiting to go in. I bought 1 1/2 pool fittings and then bought marlon 90 from west marine...yeah I know....those fittings cost nearly as much as the rest of the tank. Know when not to skimp on expenses! : ) 
There is the new tank in place, it holds 14 gallons. The two smaller fittings are for the vent lines. I decided to run to vents as I have been told it helps promote less odor by allowing airflow through the tank.

So in summary a very good project, not very hard and quite fun. Best of all I have just over $100 in the whole thing including the marlon fittings. 
We'll let you know how its first sea-trials turn out...

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Life! It's a Trap

I know over the beginning part of this year the blog has been a bit slow; well...very slow. Sorry to all who follow us but somehow we got caught in life again. We have found ourselves completely wrapped up in the grind. I found a new job, in addition to going to school. The new job came with a price.....STUDYING! I had to study for an electronics test which wasn't too bad. After the exam they called to tell me they wanted me to join their team but I would need to obtain a CDL permit first. No t a problem, other than it required more studying which took time away from my college classes. So last week I passed the CDL permit and am on my way to my new place of employment this Monday. Last night I passed the final in my engineering class, and tonight I am taking a break from cramming for my calculus final on Saturday morning. Calculus is an online class and to be honest I'd been putting off the work, so now in the final hour I am playing catch up. I am nervous because this has not been an easy class. TIME WILL TELL!
We have been making progress toward getting our vberth back together: we bought our interior paint, and I finished building our new holding tank (I'll add a post about the building of our new holding tank soon). I am going to make an effort over the next few months to get a few projects we did put up on the blog.
 I have only been out sailing twice in the last month. Just too busy....I really hope with the new job comes a new routine and some free time. We set off on this journey to become live aboards and cruisers. Take the path less traveled and so far we can't seem to break free of the day in day out routines of needing money.
There she is patiently waiting for us to start our journey!