Removal/Maintenance/Refurb For East Coast Tritons

Bill Bell, #41, Kialoa

You can usually get the tank out in an easy morning's work. Start by draining the tank completely. Disconnect the vent, fill and supply lines. Empty everything out of the galley and remove the stbd berth cushion plus the back rest. On most boats, the back rest is secured to another, non-upholstered back rest piece. It is secured to battens at each end of the hull, running vertically at the head and foot of the berth.

Remove the drawers from the galley unit, disconnect the water line running into the faucet and remove the cover over the storage space at the rear end of the galley unit. If you get a good light and look into this storage space, you will be able to see the access door to the tank area. Kneel on the berth platform at the aft end of the berth and remove the screws outboard of the batten to which the aft end of the backrest panel was screwed. These will be two or three #10 or #12 oval head screws which go into the outboard edge of the galley unit. Remove the galley area storage shelves and the front panel. Remove the lowest shelf - the one on the same level as the gally counter. To remove it, you will have to take out several flat head screws which are directly beneath the bottom of the vertical panel in the dish storage area. Then remove the engine covers and look for a diagonal brace running down the inboard side of the galley unit on down to the vertical plywood panel which forms the vertical, inboard, berth support. The galley module also rests on this large, flat shelf. This diagonal brace is what the forward engine cover panel rests against. You will find the bottom of the batten is screwed into the vertical panel forming the vertical support for the galley - berth shelf.

At this point, you should be able to jiggle the galley module. You must be able to yank the galley module inboard in order to disengage the outboard side from the vertical support forming the forward vertical member of the dish storage area. When doing this job on "Kialoa",#41, I find that the gally module bumps into the alternator. Therefore I have to disconnect the alternator from its support arm and swing the alternator up and over the block. This leaves enough space to the sbd side of the engine to permit me to pull the gally module toward the centerline of the boat until the outboard flange is clear of the vertical shelving member.

Pull the galley module out to get access to the door to the cockpit area. My galley will fit out the companionway hatch; I leave it on the fwd deck or other out-of-the way place if the operation requires all the cabin space . Otherwise,I leave it on the fwd end of the berth shelf. On my boat, the "door" or hatch to access the under seat cockpit area is locked in by just one turnbutton. Pull the door panel towards you and you have access to the entire under-seat area. Access to the instruments, part of the engine and the gas tank.

The tank will be braced by wood pieces probably glassed in. You may have to knock these pieces out with a chisel and hammer; they can be epoxied back in place when you are through. Now you should be able to pull the tank forward and out - after you have cleared away whatever instrument pipes and wires may be in the way. Please be sure to use this great opportunity to check the pipe that leads out of the bronze deck fuel fill fitting. I have found that on many boats, a galvanized 3" pipe was used. These are all very well rusted by now, I have seen one I could put an ice pick through! If your pipe is steel, pull the sucker out and replace it. Please contact me if you have any questions. I have not seen every Triton, yours may be different. If something I wrote is not clear, write or call; I will try to help. Bill Bell, I B Editor. e-mail add: Wonsqueak @ Snail mail: Box 88, Birch Harbor ME 04613. Tel 207-963-2390

Good luck - and remember, some one put the thing together; you can take it apart!

Greg, #277, Aliya

Bill Bell's step by step account to remove the galley and gain access to the fuel tank seems on the money. Having removed the galley, I can say it is rather simple (when you find all the securing wood screws). It was a lot of fun to grab it and give a tug to reveal the access panel for the fuel tank.

I gave the fuel tank replacement effort lots of review and planning and decided to go with a Tempo 15 gal square tank which "should " fit forward of the existing tank (just behind the gauges and throttle control ). This is a very tight fit which needs to a.) rearrange the scupper drains (shorten and reroute hose drains) and b.) cut the wood laminated strut which is bolted to a hull tab and runs to a cross member under the forward end of the cockpit. This will also require building a platform and securing to hull so the tank is fully supported. A 90 degree bend at the tank is needed to attached the filler hose. Since I am only in the preliminary stages (prep work on the drains and wood strut) I would not recommend following this plan at this point. The sailing season has been great so the tank removal and installation will take place this fall. I will update the list with the outcome.

A.J. Matthews, #605, Ay Mon

The only way out for the monel tank is out through the galley. Spend an afternoon (or two) with a screwdriver, a flashlight and a good deal of patience. You will get there.

I have a monel tank as well and can't fathom loosing it.... ....if you are looking for a poly tank, why not check out RONCO PLASTICS They have a multitude of models and shapes. One of them is bound to fit. The tanks tend to be heavier than standard poly fuel tanks and they will put the fills, vents and taps where you tell them to.

Bill Meyer, #393, Fjordia

Our original tank rusted out three years ago. It had to be cut in half to get it out of the starboard locker location. Had a new auminum tank fabricated, but it is not as large as the original, so it could be installed in the same place.

Steve Cossman, #543, Juno

I have an East Coast boat as well. I stared long and hard at the unit too. Removal of the tank is pretty cut and dry so to speak. I just completed the job and can say it is a lot of work but well worth it. Here's how I removed the tank:

The galley unit is one whole unit.

First you remove the backrest of the setee. It is tight. Two screws each, fore and aft. That removed, you need to dig a little for three screws. They puttied over them to hide 'em. Also you need to take the fiddle off of the setee.

Next look at the engine cover fiddles. There is one screw at the bottom. That needs to come out.

Now look at the shelf unit. Take the face off and you will find another fiddle. You need to remove that as well. Actually you will need to take the whole shelf unit out. Piece by piece. Just look for the screws. There are more anchoring screws under that fiddle. Once that is done you should have all the screws out. By the way, save the screws if you can, they are bronze and hard to come by.

Now comes the fun part. I had to take off all the electrical stuff on the side of the galley unit. Disconnect the pipe from the sink as well as the pump. You may need to cut the pipe. But do it high. The waterline is very close. It will be tough. Also I had to swing the alternator over the top of the motor. That being accomplished, you should be able to pull the unit inboard slightly and then forward. Should be fairly easy.

If you get that done, you will see the hatch leading to the stern and your tank! You are almost there. You will need to remove the facial that runs across the top. I just cut mine 'cause I will be replacing it.

Once that is removed you can get the hatch off easy.

Taking the tank out will be a VERY TIGHT squeeze. I just used a cold chisel to break the glass fillets. Not the brightest idea but worked. Only break the front one. However you may need to break the two outboard ones as well.

Take all of the stuff off of the tank. Pick-up, fill tube and over-flow. The tank should start to slide forward a bit. You may need to shave a bit of glass off the lazerette drain. I had to do that and it came out slicker'n a birds butt!

I had the tank boiled out at a radiator shop and they coated it for me as well. Not cheap but well worth it. Once the tank is back in, making fillets is easy. Just get some glass and epoxy and cut little rectangles.

My job came out swell. Viola. Two weeks of off and on work. Did it by myself. I had a ball.

Bob, Akasha, #140

Akasha has the top opening lockers, so I opened the starboard side where the tank is, removed the fill tube, supply line tube, vent tube, ground the tabs off, and lifted the tank out the top. Took about 30 minutes from start to finish. You gotta love those top opening cockpit lockers. There even water tight.

Mark Parker, #516, All Ways

Here's how I 'rehabbed my tank:

Step 1 - clean thoroughly - Nothing seemed to work until I used muriatic acid. Go gently here this stuff will eat your tank if you leave it in over night!. Pour in about 1 gal., throw in a handful of old bolts and shake well. Let set for a few minutes, agitate and sit on another side. Whole process should take less than 1/2 hour. Pour out and 'dispose of properly'. The tank should be shiny as new inside.

Step 2- pour in one can of 'RedCoat' a commercial tank liner you can probably get from an automotive store. Twist and turn letting the tank sit on eachside for several minutes (10-15) ( You did, of course tape up all openings at the beginning of this, right?) After about 2 hours, pour out any extra goo, open all holes and allow to dry. I hooked up an old vacuum cleaner to the fuel gage hole to suck air through and speed drying.

Step 3 - next day repeat step 2.

Step 4 - put it back in and enjoy your 'new' tank!