6/24/17 A THING OF BEAUTY Whenever I visit our factories in Taiwan and China, I always enjoy walking around and watching the various craftsmen at work. One of my favorite areas is the FRP tank building department. Nordhavns have from two to six fuel tanks depending on the model and each tank is built in its own special mold and shaped perfectly to fit snugly in its designed space in the hull or bilge. Nordhavn fuel tanks are laminated fiberglass using vinylester resin and are finished with a fire retardant outer surface. All tanks are ISO approved for fire safety and have passed actual physical burn tests.
While walking around the partially complete Nordhavn 76 #26, I saw that one of the fuel tank man hole covers was open, so I decided to drop in for a look. The tank of course has a series of baffles inside to prevent fuel sloshing, but crawl spaces can be opened up by unbolting the baffle pieces and every inch of surface inside the tank can be reached for inspection or cleaning if necessary. It was sparkling clean and SO beautiful inside. It is a shame that it gets closed up.
We have been using FRP tanks now for about 20 years with perfect results. Hundreds of Nordhavn built FRP tanks are in service. Corrosion (internal and external) is eliminated and the insulation provided by the foam coring virtually eliminates internal condensation. They will probably last 100 years or more. Why any builder in their right mind would use metal tanks on an ocean going displacement boat in 2017 boggles my mind.