Don’t Forget the Jerry Cans!

What?  We don’t need tacky looking jerry cans cluttering up our decks!  We have water tanks, diesel tanks and enough gas… and they’re all big enough that there’s no reason to bother with jerry cans…..

Well, yes and no…  What about when the water maker breaks and you could sure use a blue fresh water 5 gallon jerry jug to bring water out to the boat.  Did I mention no marina  in the immediate vicinity?  waterjerrycan

Or maybe, like us, your favorite buddy boat can only stay anchored in your favorite spear fishing paradise for a couple weeks before they need water.   Sure was nice to be able to  fill them a jerry can every time we made water, thus extending the fun for both boats!

And don’t forget the you may need to jerry jug diesel from a local gas station because there is no fuel dock in some spectacular out of the way cruising grounds.   Lugging two 6 gallon jerry cans back to the dinghy is not fun, but it sure beats needing fuel with no way to fill up.

Depending on where you’re cruising, there are places where you can’t take the boat to a marina or dock to fill with water, diesel or gasoline.  And that’s one of the things that makes those places so special.  But, it’s really helpful to have some jerry cans aboard.

So even if you think you have big enough tanks, a watermaker and don’t need any jerry cans.  Throw a couple of them in the back cabin anyway.  And if, like us, you want to carry an extra stash of diesel on deck and lots of extra gasoline to fuel our gas hungry two stroke outboard and Honda generator, you may want to make a board or stainless holder to lash them to on deck.

Yellow jerry cans for diesel, blue for water and red for gasoline.  We have one for water, two for diesel and three for gasoline — in addition to our regular three gallon gas tank for the dinghy.   And, the “no leak” overflow proof spouts are garbage.  Not sure whoever thought these were a good idea to impose on everyone, but whoever it was needs to actually USE one of them.  Yuck.

The two handles make it easier to pour, but this style is shorter and fatter and doesn't fit well on our side deck.

The two handles make it easier to pour, but this style is shorter and fatter and doesn’t fit well on our side deck.

We like the ones with two handles, one on each side so they’re easier to pour, but that’s not the kind we have because the top handle ones are slimmer and fit easier on deck.  The water jerry can lives below in the quarterberth, always empty since we have a watermaker.  The yellow and red jerry cans live on deck, full of extra diesel or gasoline.

Look closely amidships, you can see our jerry jug

Look closely amidships, you can see our jerry jug “rack”.

A couple more thoughts while we’re on the subject … jerry jugs and tropical sun UV rays don’t get along well.  Covering them with canvas is a really good idea to extend their useful life.  We added an extra gas can along the way after we’d had the canvas covers made and never got around to getting one.  So one of our gas jerry cans is covered by one of David’s old t-shirts.  Tacky tacky tacky – but effective.  Maybe we’ll rectify that this year if we replace the jerry can and fender covers – all of them are rotting.

Anyone have additional thoughts or recommendations on a particularly good brand of jerry cans?  Ours are helter-skelter, some bought in Belize, some in the Rio Dulce, … all because we didn’t leave to go cruising with enough jerry cans.  Cheers  Jan


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