Two Inside Projects on Dauntless, Part 1

This winter has been the first real refit since we bought Dauntless three years ago.  When we bought this Krogen 42, she was in great shape, in fact the best shape of the 8 KK 42’s I looked at.  She had the lowest engine hours, only 1650, and some features we wanted: dual heads, four windows in the rear salon and no built-in furniture in the salon.  The Flexsteel leather furniture that the previous owner had gotten for the boat was like new.  The nicest leather we had ever felt.  We talked about that leather for two years before we actually were in a position to get D.

Middle top is fuel intake. behind it with the rust pattern underneath is the fuel vent.
Middle top is fuel intake. behind it with the rust pattern underneath is the fuel vent.

But with this little use, comes issues that are a result of that little use.

The port side fuel tank started leaking this past summer.  It was coming from the forward inboard seam. On opening up the inspection port, it had a lot of rust.  More rust than I had seen in the starboard tank.

Now since I had had the boat, I’d had problems with water getting into the tank.  During the last days of my Atlantic Passage, this became a critical problem that had me changing or emptying fuel filters every few hours.  You can read those details here: Dauntless-crosses-the-north-atlantic-the-post-mortem

Last summer in Holland, with the help of Marinus, another Krogen owner, I finally figured out the source of the water was the stink’in fuel vent.  In one of the few poor decisions Kadey Krogen made in the design of this boat, the fuel vent was under the rub rail.  As the Krogen rolls its way across the Atlantic this became an issue when I was in very big seas and the stabilizers were not working as well as they should for reasons related to operator (ME) error.

To fix the tank issues, we decided to add three more larger inspection ports. This will allow the two-part epoxy sealant to be applied.

the rust pattern underneath is the fuel vent.
the rust pattern underneath is the fuel vent.

Looking at the pictures of the opened tank, one can see the rust pattern from the water getting into the vent.

Also, when I had purposely overfilled this tank by about 10 gallons, in part to see what would happen, I had the unpleasant surprise to see fuel leaking out of the tank into the bilge.  It was not apparent where this fuel was coming from. This picture shows the fitting itself was poorly installed and the screws used rusted and basically left small holes for fuel to get out or even rain water that was on top of the tank to get in.

From the amount of rust, this tank was not sued for quite some time, years, but left with some water.  Once I got the boat, this tank had been the problem child, therefore I had a tendency not to use it as much, which ended up exacerbating the problem.

Fuel tank today after cleaning
Fuel tank today after cleaning

Here are some before pictures.  The after pictures will come when done.

Author: Richard on Dauntless

I’m an eclectic person, who grew up in New York, lived overseas for many years and have a boat, Dauntless, a 42 foot Kadey Krogen trawler yacht. Dauntless enables me to not only live in many different parts of the world, but to do it in a way that is interesting, affordable, with the added spice of a challenge. Dauntless also allows me to be in touch with nature. As the boat glides through the ocean, you have a sense of being part of a living organism. When dolphins come to frolic, they stay longer if you are out there talking to them, watching them. Birds come by, sometimes looking for a handout; sometimes grateful to find a respite from their long journey. I grew up on the New York waterfront, in the West Village, when everything west of Hudson St. was related to shipping and cargo from around the world. For a kid, it was an exciting place of warehouses, trucks, and working boats of all kinds: tugs and the barges and ships, cargo and passenger, they were pushing around. My father was an electrical engineer, my mother an intellectual, I fell in between. I have always been attracted to Earth’s natural processes, the physical sciences. I was in 8th grade when I decided to be a Meteorologist. After my career in meteorology, my natural interest in earth sciences: geology, astronomy, geography, earth history, made it a natural for me to become a science teacher in New York City, when I moved back to the Big Apple. Teaching led to becoming a high school principal to have the power to truly help kids learn and to be successful not only in school but in life. Dauntless is in western Europe now. In May and June, I will be wrapping up the last two years in northern Europe, heading south to spend the rest of the year in Spain & Portugal. Long term, I’m planning on returning to North American in the fall of 2017 and from there continuing to head west until we’re in Northeast Asia, Japan and South Korea, where we will settle for a bit. But now, my future lies not in NY or even Europe, but back to the water, where at night, when the winds die down, there is no noise, only the silence of the universe. I feel like I am at home, finally.

3 thoughts on “Two Inside Projects on Dauntless, Part 1”

  1. Are they going to grind/blast to gray/white metal on the tanks before using the epoxy?

    I have seen discussions about the pro and cons of using epoxy inside diesel tanks. My two cents is that epoxy is a good thing since it keeps water away from the steel. The only downside, besides cost, is there going to be a fuel additive in the future that causes a problem? Water can be a problem now vs some possible problem in the future so I lean towards epoxy in the tank as a good thing.

    1. No.
      I’ll post new pictures, but after cleaning it with a special cleaner that drove me off the boat yesterday, it’s epoxy today.
      It appears that the leak is not along the bottom seam as thought, but instead may be along the forward vertical seam. Which appears to have been welded from the outside, but not in.

  2. I kinda guessed they would use a chemical to clean up the rust. Blasting in a confined space like that, especially in the boat, would be more than problematic and grinding would not be much better/easier.

    When we were in China a few years ago, the ship yard next to the boat yard we were visiting was using some chemicals. At first I thought it was paint thinner but the smell kept getting stronger and stronger. 😦 I finally figured the chemical was not floating downwind to me but down river! I went down below in the boat we were visiting to get out of the chemical smell. I did not smell that stuff for long but I still got a head ache. 😦

    People were eating fish out of the river too but that is another story. 🙂

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