Propane Tank for Freedom 32

Anything that doesn't fit into the other Physical Systems categories
agandrik
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat May 29, 2010 9:01 pm

Propane Tank for Freedom 32

Post by agandrik »

My husband and installed a range into our F32 (the previous owners removed it) and we realize that it's seemingly impossible to find a horizontal propane tank that fits into the lazarette locker. We've seem some other users recommending the 6 lb. Worthington cylinder; however, this appears to be a vertical cylinder. Do you have any operational issues using a vertical cylinder positioned horizontally? Any other tank recommendations?

Thanks,

Anastasia G.
F32 - Heretic, San Diego

chandler
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 11:52 am
Location: Me.

Re: Propane Tank for Freedom 32

Post by chandler »

Are the old tanks gone, if not you can bring them to a propane dealer and they can update them.
Or try trident marine for new tanks, they say have lots of different sizes and styles available. The 6 lb. vertical seems to be the most expensive, maybe because freedom ws the only one to design a lazarette prpane locker that fit only 6 lb verticles?

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Rick Simonds
Posts: 144
Joined: Fri Dec 05, 2008 8:49 pm
Location: Tallahassee, FL

Re: Propane Tank for Freedom 32

Post by Rick Simonds »

It won’t work. A horizontal version of an LP cylinder has an “L”-shaped tube inside the cylinder, putting the pickup point above the liquid level, to allow gas into the lines instead of liquid. A vertical LP cylinder used horizontally WILL NOT work: Liquid propane (instead of gaseous propane) will go into the lines.

You about to begin a screamingly frustrating “Catch-22” journey, the exact same one I’ve been on for several years without progress. Here’s the problem (and I’m emphasizing “THIS TANK” and “HORIZONTAL” because every suggestion I’ve ever heard doesn’t take these showstopper details into account. I can find a vertical version of this tank, or a vertical OPD valve, any day of the week. The solution must use THIS TANK and it must be still be useable in the HORIZONTAL position.):

1) Only the ***HORIZONTAL*** version of ***THIS*** 6 lb Worthington cylinder (or its exact clone) will fit the storage space in the F32, nothing else will work.

2) The HORIZONTAL version of the 6 lb Worthington cylinder is not made any more because all new cylinders require an Overfill Prevention Device (OPD) valve and there is not an OPD valve made that will work in THIS small tank when it is used HORIZONTALLY. (Yes, oodles of screw-in replacement OPD valves are readily available and OPD valves are now standard on other new, small horizontal cylinders, but no one makes a direct replacement OPD valve suitable for THIS small HORIZONTAL cylinder.)

3) While you can’t buy a new one, the LP gas industry recognizes the small, horizontal cylinder OPD problem, so you’re okay if you happen to own an old one: small, horizontal cylinders are expressly and specifically exempt from the OPD valve requirements; they can legally be used and filled.

4) There’s a problem with an old tank, though: no cylinders are exempt from the rectification requirements (every 10 years? I forget right now.) Since your cylinder is old, it probably is due to be recertified and cannot be filled unless it is recertified. The recertification process has no small-tank OPD exemption and it absolutely demands that all cylinders must have an OPD valve installed, period. Since a suitable HORIZONTAL OPD valve for THIS cylinder is not made, installing an OPD valve means it will no longer work in the HORIZONTAL position, it will become a vertical cylinder.

5) Go to item 1.


Good luck. Lemme know if you find a way out of the loop.
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Rick
Tallahassee

katorpus
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:51 pm
Location: Freedom 40 Cat Ketch, Hull #61, Corpus Christi, TX

Re: Propane Tank for Freedom 32

Post by katorpus »

The way out of the loop is as follows:

1) The tank recertification process is to insure that the tank is not about to fail (in normal use) from corrosion etc. The tank itself is (presumably) inspected and pressure tested, then stamped with a "new date".

2) The "difference" in any given tank (in horizontal or vertical use) is the internal piping of the valve & OPD (if present). Fill valves are regularly replaced (for one reason or another) without recertification of the tank, but if the tank stamp is "out of date", the propane supplier cannot refill it without recertification.

3) When the time comes to recertify the tank, buy a vertical fill valve (with OPD) which will fit, screw it in, then have the tank recertified but NOT refilled.

4) After you have your nice new stamp on the tank (good for another few years), remove the vertical fill valve & replace it with the original valve, then have the tank refilled.

There MAY be some "absolute age" beyond which a tank cannot be recertified (based on the original manufacture/certification date). If you run up against this, you're back "in the loop" again.

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Rick Simonds
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Location: Tallahassee, FL

Re: Propane Tank for Freedom 32

Post by Rick Simonds »

True, and here’s another way back into the loop. I have 2 of these tanks and given my love of cooking aboard and the tank’s 6 lb capacity, carrying a spare is a moderately important. One of my tanks works fine with its old style, horizontal-capable POL valve (the old style valves with only left-hand female threads are called POL [“Prest-O-Lite”] valves.) I’m fortunate that I know 2 places, one near my home and one near the marina that are still willing to fill this tank. The other identical spare tank had the same horizontal POL valve, but the valve itself was leaking badly enough that it became too dangerous to use. I looked everywhere and talked to everyone to try to find a suitable horizontal valve of either style. Suitable horizontal OPDs are simply not made, and old-style POLs are simply no longer available. Finally, with no other options, I had it changed to a standard OPD valve and recertified. Despite being told otherwise, without that internal “L”-shaped tube the tank no longer works in the horizontal position. Fortunately I saved the old horizontal-capable POL and can only hope that perhaps it can be refurbished and reinstalled.

As long as that one POL valve still works my F32’s LP system still works. This subject comes up once in a while and when someone says they found something I always follow up on it. It has never panned out. The bugaboo is always that both THIS tank (no other will fit) must be used HORIZONTALLY (vertical will not work.) No joy with both so far.

(Sigh….) One day, for want of a freakin’ $40 valve, I foresee the ultimate solution as some as-yet-unknown LP tank storage major reconstructive boat surgery.
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Tallahassee

agandrik
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat May 29, 2010 9:01 pm

Re: Propane Tank for Freedom 32

Post by agandrik »

The previous owners got rid of the old tanks when they took out the stove, apparently they wanted a microwave instead as they did not cook? As a result, getting the old tanks recertified is not an option. We've got a brand new Force-10 stove installed, which was no small task, we figured the propane tanks would be easier... We initially went for a Seaward propane locker in the port-side large locker. We did some minor boat surgery getting it into the locker to realize that it just took up too much space. To actually get a propane tank in the locker and have the vent above the water line, meant we couldn't install the propane locker in the aft portion of the locker. This meant we would have to install the propane locker right in the opening, losing access to major storage space. Lots of fiberglass dust later and an exhaustive search for a horizontal 6 lb. cylinder, we decided to get a rail mount for a 6 lb. aluminum vertical propane tank. We've installed the solenoid, pressure gauge, and regulator in the starboard side lazarette locker which is already vented properly, thus shielding these important items from the elements. We figure we can store two additional vertical propane tanks in the port and starboard lazarette lockers, as they already have mounts for the old 6 lb. horizontal tanks, giving us ample fuel as we liveaboard and enjoy cooking. A bonus is that we can easily send an additional line to our rail mounted gas grill, instead of using the 1 lb coleman bottles. It's not the prettiest solution, but we'll get a nice UV resistant cover made for the single tank and the lines.

Anastasia
1984 F-32, Heretic

katorpus
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:51 pm
Location: Freedom 40 Cat Ketch, Hull #61, Corpus Christi, TX

Re: Propane Tank for Freedom 32

Post by katorpus »

Rick

Thinking outside the box again...

If it's the tank valve that's leaking (and not the stem that the handle is on), perhaps you could rig a female coupling for your old valve and stack another valve on top it, using the new valve as the tank shutoff & leaving the old one permanently open (with the handle removed). You might even be able to remove the guts to the valve and seal the stem hole with a cap. This arrangement MIGHT cause your propane supplier some heartburn, but...the only real danger here (provided that the threads are adequately sealed) is that it is "more possible" to "knocK the valve off" of the tank when dropping it or knocking it against something while moving it around... but then again, the added length of the tank & valves might not fit into your propane locker either.

For a backup supply, you could always rig a 12 gallon or larger (vertical) tank with a fill line to refill your horizontal tank (storing it somewhere on the boat...preferably on deck, I suppose). Open both valves after connecting. Once the pressure equalizes, you should have 6 gallons of propane in your horizontal tank. If you start with less than twice what the small tank will hold, you'll only end up with half of whatever you have in your horizontal tank.

You'll have to diddle the purge valve on the horizontal tank if you've allowed it to run completely dry and take on "atmospheric air"

They sell kits to refill small throway propane bottles from your larger tank. I always thought that was a bit dicey myself, but this approach isn't far off from what goes on when you visit the propane supplier (except that the pressure in his supply tank is higher than what you will have in either of yours...which is why he weighs your tank to know when it's full.)

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Rick Simonds
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Location: Tallahassee, FL

Re: Propane Tank for Freedom 32

Post by Rick Simonds »

As it is, I use the now-vertical-only tank as a last-ditch backup. It still stores securely but the difference is it’s only useable at anchor because it doesn’t work horizontally. I stand it up and connect it, finish cooking, then take the whole thing apart again. Admittedly, it’s a crappy solution, but it does avoid the desperate mayday call I’d be forced to make if I couldn’t make coffee in the morning. (“MAYDAY, MAYDAY, MAYDAY! Hello all stations, sailing vessel Justiina hailing mayday. Send hot coffee! Large! Black, no sugar! For my crew’s sake, YOU MUST HURRY! Helicopters are NOT inappropriate here…”) I also use it, lashed to the stern rail, for the barbeque instead of the disposable Coleman tanks (and I’ve completely given up on Coleman tanks even as backups; they’re always a rusty mess and potential bombs before I get around to using them.)

The vertical tank is not useless, it would just be a LOT better if it still worked horizontally.

I have the hose that hooks the barbecue to the LP tank instead of using Coleman tanks, and also the fitting that allows you to refill a Coleman tank. I really think most cruisers should have these 2 things aboard, just in case you run out of propane. You can (at least partially) refill a propane tank yourself, anywhere. That was my method before I found the 2 places that would refill my out-of-date, wrong-valve tank. Here’s how:

Hook the barbeque hose to a standard LP tank. Place it valve-down on a picnic table. Put the Colman-refill fitting in the empty tank and put it on the ground. Connect the barbeque hose to the Coleman fitting. Open both valves. Over an hour or so, LP will flow from the full tank down to the empty one. I’ll get maybe half a fill without any trouble but there is a "diminishing returns" process here: more gets increasingly difficult as the 2 tanks equalize their pressures. You can help the process by “burping” the lower tank (open the small pressure relief screw periodically.) You will also get a fuller fill if you chill the lower tank and heat the upper tank (heat the upper tank with, say, full sunlight, not with, say, a blowtorch – and if you actually had to be told that, perhaps this method isn’t for you.) You can monitor the progress with a spring-powered fish weighing scale. When you’ve had enough, close the valves and disassemble everything. Avoid any behavior that results in explosive fireballs.

LP-wise, I’m okay for now but, as I say, one day I’ll come up with a more elegant, but vastly more difficult, re-engineering of the whole LP storage system.
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Rick
Tallahassee

chandler
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2010 11:52 am
Location: Me.

Re: Propane Tank for Freedom 32

Post by chandler »

Wow,
Sounds like the time I hooked up my gas grill tank to the house stove dryer propane tank cuz we couldn't afford 100 pounds of gas. Gas guy was not impressed!

sanibel sailor
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Jan 15, 2011 8:25 pm

Re: Propane Tank for Freedom 32

Post by sanibel sailor »

I just got off the phone with a guy from Emerald Isle Distributors. 1-877-673-3278 www.emeraldid.com They supply the valves to Worthington. He says he can get a valve for these. Horizontal tanks are still exempt from OPD requirements under NFPA 2011 rules
John Churchill
Sanibel FL

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