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Thread: Fuel tank service questions

  1. #1
    Registered User StinkyCheese's Avatar
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    Default Fuel tank service questions

    Took the fuel tank out of my '73 240z on Saturday to get it boiled out. When I fill up the tank I would get a very strong gas smell, so I know I have a leak. Also, a couple of weeks ago when I went to get it started, I found that I had to blow out the fuel lines to get fuel to flow. I assume I had some debris in the lines. After taking the tank off, I'm convinced the leak was a hose and not the tank itself.

    When I lowered the tank to get at the hidden hoses, the hidden hoses ripped in half! I guess they were a little tired..

    I drained the tank and didn't find much in the tank. The picture shows some debris, but I think most of it is dirt from the outside of the tank.

    Another strange thing - when I took off the passenger side interior panel, there was a bunch of fiberglass insulation stuffed in there. Is that normal? Seems to me that would just absorb moisture and promote rust..

    I've read people complaining that the filler tube is a pain to remove. Mine looks fine, and seems sturdy. What are my chances that I can just leave that in? Then I won't have to wait for the part to be delivered (if I can even order one..).
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  2. #2
    Registered User ZCurves's Avatar
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    I would remove any Fiberglass that you may find. It looks like the PO left you a present!

    Since you have the tank out, you should avoid temptation to keep the filler tube, it is 38 years old! Just replace it and be done. The other brittle lines were likely your problem.

    Just flush your tank real well, clean the Sender and you should be good to go!
    Andrew (ZCurves)
    1978 Coupe - HLS30-440105
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    Registered User 5thhorsemann's Avatar
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    Just finished that very job last fall, those lines are a bitch to install with the tank in the car. I would go for a new filler while you are in there. Like curves said, get rid of the fiberglass, I would add to check the drivers side for more. Probably someones lame attempt at sound proofing, but a true threat to your quarters.

  4. #4
    Z geek at large FastWoman's Avatar
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    Dunno about the filler tube. Mine (on a '78) seemed to be made of nitrile rubber or some similar high performance synthetic rubber -- pliable, no oxidation, and as I recall, not even any indentations from the band clamps. I was quite surprised. I did reuse mine. I hope that decision won't bite me back.

    You definitely don't want the fiberglass, though.
    My last three sports cars while I still owned all three:

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    STINK
    Good job on the tank removal and adding new lines. No doubt those rotted hoses were the cause of fumes inside the car. I would suggest getting to work on some of the surface rust before it penetrates and not only check the drivers side for more little presents but any other voids that someone can stuff things into. Adding some braiding to the lines will help them get more life although 38 years is longer than a lot of people live. Good Luck!
    "HAPPINESS"....isn't just around the corner......"HAPPINESS"....is the CORNER"

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    i took my side panel off yesterday. fb glass stuffed in mine also. expansion tank had fb glass on back of it. that's where it came from.

  7. #7
    1978 280Z (stock) TomoHawk's Avatar
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    The factory only used the insulation in the form on compressed mats, so anything that looks like it came from the garage attic was probably added by the PO, as a cur for something that made noise while riving. I think you're right about it being a good seed for dirt accumulation and rust.
    Last edited by TomoHawk; 03-16-2011 at 12:44 PM.
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  8. #8
    Registered User Powderkeg's Avatar
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    Cheese,

    I just refurbished my tank last September. I have a 76 280Z

    Since you've gone through the trouble of removing the tank, I'd replace all of the hoses.

    The filler tube is pretty easy to install: the key is to attach the filler tube to the tank first...then fit it through the filler opening.
    You may have to heat (use a heat gun or hair dryer) the tube to get it to fit through the opening. You can get a little rough with the tube...it's pretty stout!
    Observe all safety precautions regarding possible gas tank fumes and heat sources!

    Most of the hoses are available from your local auto parts store.

    The problem child is the 16mm (5/8") hose with the 180 degree bend. I don't now the availability of new ones for a 73 Z but you can get a 6 inch length of 1/2 piece of stainless steel tubing and have it bent by a muffler shop, machine shop, or plumbing shop. Slip the 5/8" hose over the sleeve and you have a bend.

    The other hoses should be fairly easy. I'd also clean and coat the tank straps with POR-15. Clean the j-bolts and nuts.

    I'll state he obvious: get gasoline or fuel injection hoses NOT heater hoses.
    Do you plan on coating the inside and outside of the tank? If you do POR-15, Eastwood Company, Kreem make gas tank coating systems.
    I've used POR-15 on my Z and three motorcycle tanks, all with excellent results.
    I've not read or heard anything bad with the Eastwood products and have read mixed reviews about Kreem products.

    Good luck.

    Dave Ruiz

  9. #9
    Registered User Bonzi Lon's Avatar
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    I was able to find the large hose at my local John Deere dealer, fuel rated, 300psi, heavy enough not to kink.

    Bonzi Lon
    1973 HLS30-168500
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    1969 HLS30-000110 SOLD Shipped to Dubai UAE
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Powderkeg View Post
    The problem child is the 16mm (5/8") hose with the 180 degree bend. I don't now the availability of new ones for a 73 Z but you can get a 6 inch length of 1/2 piece of stainless steel tubing and have it bent by a muffler shop, machine shop, or plumbing shop. Slip the 5/8" hose over the sleeve and you have a bend.
    I couldn't find this hose (formed) locally, so I went to the local ace hardware and bought a stainless steel door return spring that fit loosly in the hose. Cut to size and installed the hose. Keeps the bend wide open, works like a champ, and removes two clamp connections from the aformentioned set up. I realize there is very little liquid fuel seen by this hose, but the fumes in the cockpit suck.

  11. #11
    Z geek at large FastWoman's Avatar
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    Goodyear makes an EZ Coil. It's a stainless steel slinky thing that goes around the exterior of a hose and forms a kink-free bend up to 90 deg. I found that 90 deg was sufficient to make the required bends, so long as the hose wasn't strung too tightly.

    http://www.goodyearep.com/productsdetail.aspx?id=16154
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by FastWoman View Post
    Goodyear makes an EZ Coil. It's a stainless steel slinky thing that goes around the exterior of a hose and forms a kink-free bend up to 90 deg. I found that 90 deg was sufficient to make the required bends, so long as the hose wasn't strung too tightly.

    http://www.goodyearep.com/productsdetail.aspx?id=16154
    Yeah, I think I'm going to go with this method. I also liked the "storm door spring" idea...

    I had to travel to Maryland on business this week, so I had my daughter take it to the radiator repair place to get it boiled out. I called the guy and he said, "oh, we don't boil them out anymore, but we can steam it out." I don't know what either technique means! I hear people say, "boil out your tank", but I have no idea what it means.

    Anyway, I asked him what their services entailed. He said for $170 they would "steam" it out, then put in a sealant. For the exterior, they just steam wash it off. But then he offered another solution. For $325 they would disassemble the tank, sandblast the inside and out, weld it back together, coat it with some kind of paint (?), and then bake it. Lifetime guarantee. I think he called it a "renu" process and they're the only authorized Utah dealer. I probably could have bought a tank for less, but I'm too lazy to look for it. I saw the article on how to do the POR15 - I love the way it looks, but looks like a major pain. I don't want to do this twice, so I'm going to leave it to the pros..

    Anyone know where I can get a new gasket for my sender unit?

    I've decided to re-use the filler hose. It actually looks fairly new. I'm wondering if it has actually been replaced before.

    Another question - what do you use for clamps? The ones on the car are so rusty and old, I'm not going to re-use them. Should I find the same "two-wire" clamps? Are the regular cheap screw clamps OK? Does it matter?

  13. #13
    Registered User Powderkeg's Avatar
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    You should be able to get a gasket from MSA, Black dragon, Z man of Washington, Arizona Zcar, Courtesy Nissan of Texas.

    I think the service your radiator repairman is referring to is Gastankrenu.com or gastank.com. I've read good reviews about both but have not used either.

    I used regular hose clamps on all the hoses except the filler tube. I just cleaned up the filler tube clamp and reused it.

    Good luck

    Dave Ruiz

  14. #14
    Registered User StinkyCheese's Avatar
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    I put it all back together and I re-used the gasket. It leaks around that gasket.

    I can't find a sending-unit gasket in any of those websites. Unless this is it: https://www.thezstore.com/page/TZS/PROD/10-2641 ... I don't think 70-74s have fuel pumps, so this is probably it.. Anyone?

  15. #15
    Registered User Pat Carr's Avatar
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    Your local Nissan dealer may have one. I bought a new sending unit and gasket at my local dealer last year.
    Pat
    73' 240Z

  16. #16
    Registered User StinkyCheese's Avatar
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    I should have thought of that... duh. Thanks

  17. #17
    Registered User StinkyCheese's Avatar
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    So, I put the tank back in and all new hoses and it leaked, that was a bummer. But I figured it would, with a 40 year old gasket.

    I was disappointed with the renu job on my gas tank. When I talked to the guy over the phone, he said that they would disassemble the gas tank by cutting all the way around the seam. Then sand-blast it out, then bake on a coating, inside and out. When I got it back I had the buyer's remorse. They didn't take it apart at the seams, they just cut some convenient holes in it. Which means they probably didn't get all of the surfaces sand-blasted. And they applied the coating pretty sloppily. I had to remove some burrs on the outlet pipes. And the area around the fuel-level-sending-unit wasn't very smooth, either, which may be contributing to the leak. For $345 I thought it would look more professional.

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    Courtesy Nissan #17342-18000, Ring-O.

    Bonzi Lon
    1973 HLS30-168500
    1968 SPL311-18100
    1969 HLS30-000110 SOLD Shipped to Dubai UAE
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