Gas Tank & Fuel Line ReplacementInstalling a re-pop gas tank and fresh fuel lines
Whether you're building a restoration down to the last date-coded radiator hose, or a budget street-strip weekend warrior, the one thing to take into account above all else is that these babies rolled off the assembly line almost 40 years ago. That's almost 40 years of winter and summer corrosion, wear and tear, and collected road grime bolted to those four wheels. One area of particular concern is the fuel supply system. That old stamped steel gas tank has likely been back there under the trunk deck a long, long time. There's no telling how much rust, crud, gummy deposits, and old rags used for gas caps are floating around in there. The last thing you need to do is bolt up a crud supply line to your fresh new crate or race engine combination.
Get in Line
Beyond the obvious collected debris in the bottom of that old tank it's also important to consider the condition of the fuel lines. The inherent dangers of leaking gasoline are obvious, but more insidious are mystery fuel delivery problems caused by obstructed lines. Even worse is a clogged sock filter, the first line of defense against crud. The sock filter surrounds the tank pickup tube at the bottom of the tank. Since often the only way to get at the sock filter is to have at and remove the tank, replacement of the tank at that time may be a good option to consider. This is especially important if the pickup and float assembly needs to be replaced to bolster inaccurate or just plain broken fuel gauges. If you have a fuel problem at the source, you have a fuel problem overall. Why bolt fresh new stuff onto old rusty junk?
When working with gasoline or any flammable liquid use common sense. Do not work in an enclosed area, and keep a fire extinguisher approved for fuel nearby and ready to go. A couple extra bucks spent on safety is a better plan than watching your pride and joy turn into an inferno of instantly broken dreams. If you have to bang on something use a plastic hammer, and don't toss wrenches around as they might create a dangerous spark. Before adding any fuel back into the system, double check all fittings and clamps to prevent any fuel leaks before they start. Never use any Teflon tape or pipe dope on fuel fittings. The fuel will dissolve the material and create problems. Always use line wrenches to prevent rounded fittings and achieve enough torque for proper sealing. With fresh fuel flowing to that built engine you're ready to go.
Goodmark Industries, 625-E Old Norcross Road, Lawrenceville GA 30045, 770-339-8557, www.goodmarkindustries.com
Classic Tube, 80 Rotech Drive, Lancaster, NY 14086, 800-882-3711, www.classictube.com
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