Fuel Tank Cleaning

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rcupka
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Tractors Owned: 1949 Cub
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2005 New Holland GT20

Fuel Tank Cleaning

Postby rcupka » Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:26 pm

Started working on the "new to me" 154 today, first order of business was fluids. This tractor has been dormant for 16 years and the fuel tank is about 1/2 full of dark smelly old gasoline. I took the fuel tank out and am draining it into a bucket overnight. Above the fluid line inside it appears to be somewhat rusty. The physicals of the tank is good in that there are no leaks, no external rust at all or cracks in brackets, etc...

I was thinking of using muriatic acid to clean the surface rust on the inside of the tank. I have seen YouTube videos of people using other products like "The Works", Evaporust etc.... I checked with a radiator shop and they want $150 bucks to hot tank it which seems high for such a small square tank.

Has anyone had luck with muriatic acid, or other products to internally clean up an old tank that was put away with fuel in it?

Thank You in advance,

Dick
1949 Cub
1972 Lo-Boy 154
1964 Cub Cadet Model 70
2005 New Holland GT20

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MiCarl
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaning

Postby MiCarl » Tue Mar 05, 2019 7:54 am

I've done a number of motorcycle tanks with phosphoric acid. Home Depot sells it in the paint section for about $15/gallon. A gallon of that in the tank topped off with warm water should do the job. It will out gas so don't seal it up. Also, as it's not unusual for it to push out some of the acid mixture as it goes so don't have it any place you can't deal with a spill.

Phosphoric (and I assume muriatic) acid will chew right through pot metal so you need to pull the sediment bowl assembly.

The acid won't work through fuel residue or varnish so get that all out with some lacquer thinner first.

Depending on how bad the tank is it might need to soak for 24 hours. You can pretty well see when the rust is gone or loose. Rinse well after emptying.

It will flash rust very quickly when done. That's ok if you're planning an epoxy liner since it will help the epoxy adhere. Otherwise get it well rinsed with lacquer thinner to get the moisture out.
1948 Farmall Cub
1994 Speedex 1631

Duner
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaning

Postby Duner » Tue Mar 05, 2019 1:08 pm

I clean gas tanks by putting them on a rotisserie scheme using my cement mixer.
Change position once to clean all sides. I use tumbling shot but nuts, screws, nails, etc should work fine too.

SONNY
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaning

Postby SONNY » Wed Mar 06, 2019 10:59 am

The hot tank is a lot safer way. When you start messin with acids, it would be hard to get all the stuff out and could end up getting into the engine later, or keep eating the metal of the tank. Just my .002, which aint worth much these days! Just be careful with how you go about it! thanks; sonny

rcupka
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Tractors Owned: 1949 Cub
1972 Lo-Boy 154
1964 Cub Cadet Model 70
2005 New Holland GT20

Re: Fuel Tank Cleaning

Postby rcupka » Fri Mar 08, 2019 8:48 pm

Used a temporary tank today to run the Lo-Boy. Will clean the original this weekend. Cleaned Carb, fuel lines, Plugs. Started right up, charging, Hydraulics worked! Life is good in Michigan.
1949 Cub
1972 Lo-Boy 154
1964 Cub Cadet Model 70
2005 New Holland GT20

rcupka
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Tractors Owned: 1949 Cub
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaning

Postby rcupka » Sun Mar 10, 2019 11:07 pm

I gave up on trying to clean the tank myself. Crud on the bottom is almost an inch thick. Residue in the sediment bowl is like molasses! Used the muriatic acid on the cap but it would not even touch the crap in the tank. WE have a gas tank renew franchise in Ann Arbor, going to take the tank there in the morning. The fumes from the acid was tough on the lungs as well, sometimes it is worth it to pay for someone with the best equipment!
1949 Cub
1972 Lo-Boy 154
1964 Cub Cadet Model 70
2005 New Holland GT20

rcupka
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Tractors Owned: 1949 Cub
1972 Lo-Boy 154
1964 Cub Cadet Model 70
2005 New Holland GT20

Re: Fuel Tank Cleaning

Postby rcupka » Wed Mar 13, 2019 7:30 pm

Found a place to finally clean the tank Tried in Ann Arbor, and a metal cleaning shop in Toledo. Just cut two 3 inch hole in the tank for access and will weld them up when complete. Clean fuel is a must for reliability, but hated to cut into the tank. Will keep you posted.
1949 Cub
1972 Lo-Boy 154
1964 Cub Cadet Model 70
2005 New Holland GT20

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Lt.Mike
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaning

Postby Lt.Mike » Thu Mar 14, 2019 3:00 pm

Guess I got to this too late. I posted on the Cub side last month about using evaporust to clean out a ‘65 Lo-Boys tank. The tank had water inside and old gas for over five years, it was a mess. I Swirled a gallon of evaporust ($22) around with nuts and bolts for a couple days and it got about 95% of the rust out. There was nothing left inside to cause an issue and the Tracey has since been returned to service with zero issues. I didn’t drill any holes and the tanks paint which was really nice wasn’t harmed.
I’m getting ready to do anther Cub I have this way. It’s cheap to do and safe.
Check out these two threads,
viewtopic.php?t=102953
viewtopic.php?t=103463
Quote by Gary Pickeral I like
"If it can cast a shadow, it can be restored"

1958 International Cub Lo-Boy
1952 Farmall Cub (‘48 engine)
1946 International IA (Lil’Mule) “keeper”
1946 International IA “donor tractor for Lil’Mule”

Bub1
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaning

Postby Bub1 » Tue Apr 02, 2019 4:55 am

:help: I’m getting ready to clean the rust from my 56 lowboy cub. Any suggestions on a tank sealer would be helpful. I’m happy to hear of evapor- rust. Thanks Bub1!

rcupka
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Posts: 69
Joined: Wed Jul 19, 2017 8:50 pm
Zip Code: 48176
Tractors Owned: 1949 Cub
1972 Lo-Boy 154
1964 Cub Cadet Model 70
2005 New Holland GT20

Re: Fuel Tank Cleaning

Postby rcupka » Sun Apr 14, 2019 6:02 pm

I ended up cutting two 3 inch holes in my tank for the cleaning procedure, Had an industrial paint stripping company clean the tank. soldered plates over the holes and I am good to go. Did not have to use a sealer, just filled the tank and good to go!
1949 Cub
1972 Lo-Boy 154
1964 Cub Cadet Model 70
2005 New Holland GT20

Bub1
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Zip Code: 15135

Re: Fuel Tank Cleaning

Postby Bub1 » Mon Apr 15, 2019 11:27 am

How about vinegar and water for cleaning ?

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Urbish
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaning

Postby Urbish » Mon Apr 15, 2019 11:44 am

Bub1 wrote::help: I’m getting ready to clean the rust from my 56 lowboy cub. Any suggestions on a tank sealer would be helpful. I’m happy to hear of evapor- rust. Thanks Bub1!


I have used POR-15 tank sealer after a good cleaning with great results. I did the tank on my H about 12 years ago and it is holding strong. Use the search bar for "POR-15" and/or "POR15" for other discussions about it on this site.

Jim

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Greg Armstrong
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Re: Fuel Tank Cleaning

Postby Greg Armstrong » Mon Apr 22, 2019 2:20 pm

I've had my tank soaking with "WD-40 Specialist Rust Remover Soak" for about 2 days now. I've been periodically shaking and repositioning it and I have seen a considerable decrease in the rust deposits that are visible through the cap opening. Letting it soak a littler longer to see how much better it gets. Seems to be a similar product to Evaporust.


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