Author Topic: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank  (Read 819 times)

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Offline snowfighter10

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Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
« on: October 24, 2020, 10:25:43 pm »
I am so frustrated with my search for a suitable replacement fuel tank. I still cannot believe that there are no aftermarket tanks available. What's equally frustrating is no one who has successfully installed a non original fuel tank seems to have anything posted. That info would be gold!

In my searching and surfing, I have found that the most successful repairs for plastic fuel tanks is to weld or melt the damage. So that's what I did.

I used an old 120V soldering iron. For my "rod" or filler material I used the tear off strip from the lid of a 5 gallon oil bucket.  Black, of course to match the color of the fuel tank. I had practiced on a piece of old plastic mud flap earlier. . I used a cut off wheel and cut a long hole in the mud flap to mimic the crack in my tank. once the iron was hot, I pushed it into the crack so that it would melt both sides. I slowly moved the iron forward and followed it with then filler. Moving slow enough so that the sides did not cool off to quickly while I melted filler into the crack. I found moving the iron in and out of the crack helped it move forward.

Oh, before I started the repair I dumped what little gas was left onto the weeds in my gravel front yard. then I thoroughly washed out the tank with dish soap and water.

I shall post pictures in a bit.

1988 W100 SWB, 5.2 TBI, NP435 4-speed.

I offer neither pay, nor quarters, nor food;
I offer only hunger, thirst, forced marches, battles
and death.
Let him who loves his country with his heart,
and not merely with his lips,
follow me.

RamChargerCentral

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    Offline Mad Max

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #1 on: October 25, 2020, 09:30:41 am »
    sounds like a good job at a repair.  In the event you still have issues one of our own (Jim) has developed new tanks for the RC's - https://ramchargercentral.com/jungleshddodgecomponents/rc-gas-tank/

    - Sam
    2002 Dakota Quad Cab 4x4 - 440/46rh/Atlas4/D60/14b/40s
    2007 Cummins Ram 3500 Megadually 4x4 "Big Mack" - 5.9/G56 6-speed
    2016 Durango Citadel AWD - 5.7 Hemi/8-spd auto
    1952 Willys M-38 "Poncho"

                    .there's always a way...

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    Offline jungle

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #2 on: October 25, 2020, 10:31:47 am »
    I do have the Stainless steel tanks seen in here;
    https://ramchargercentral.com/jungleshddodgecomponents/rc-gas-tank/

    A little over kill but SWEET.
    Jim
    1988 RC.the gold one   pics
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    Offline area51

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #3 on: October 25, 2020, 01:17:15 pm »
    If you dicide to weld your gastank, better use the correct infiller material, beeing  the same as the tank's.
    and better than using a soldering rod, use a paint stripper, and fabricate from a can of beans or so a small funnel to direct all that hot air to your welding space.
    Than heat the tank material and the infiller material up untill it's at a elastic state, (like chewing gum) and then slowly push the infiller into the crack and let it cool down. it then should be welded.
    '77 Dodge W-200 (M-884) soon to be camper

    Offline fenrir

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #4 on: October 26, 2020, 09:40:46 am »
    As another option you can plastic weld these tanks pretty easily -  I've done it several times with my harbor freight "plastic welder kit", and rods I bought off Amazon.

    https://ramchargercentral.com/mopar-trucks/1979-dodge-w150-daily-driver/

    Did it on this sand burr of a truck - you can see the results for yourself - I sold it about 2 months ago but no drips/no leaks the whole time so it's a pretty solid repair route.
    POSSESS:
    92 W250 Extended Cab Cummins*92 W250*85 W250*80 W150*79 D100*78W150*76 Ramcharger/1979 W250 frame*75 W100 440*73 W100*72 W100

    RETIRED:
    92 W250 Cummins*91.5 W250 Cummins*91.5 D250 Cummins*85 Ramcharger*85 W150 x 2*81 Trailduster*78 D150/RC Frame*79 W150*77 Trailduster*74 W100

    Offline stftruck

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #5 on: October 26, 2020, 11:21:45 pm »
    Best rod to repair a tank, is cutting up another tank!  The plastic in these tanks will match the plastic in your tank & give you a better repair.

    Offline OldCycloneGuy

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #6 on: October 27, 2020, 09:36:41 am »
    I bought a tank from Jungle Jim, from here on this sight.  I love it.  All stainless.  Tough.  A work of art.  Highly recommended.

    I've got his front bumper too.  He makes great stuff.
    I would rather have had many cars and have only one wife than have had many wives and had only one car.

    Offline snowfighter10

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #7 on: October 28, 2020, 10:48:31 am »
    If and when this tank repair fails I will definitely consider Jungle Jim's fuel tank. If Im not mistaken it is for a Ramcharger. Can it be made to fit in a W100?
    1988 W100 SWB, 5.2 TBI, NP435 4-speed.

    I offer neither pay, nor quarters, nor food;
    I offer only hunger, thirst, forced marches, battles
    and death.
    Let him who loves his country with his heart,
    and not merely with his lips,
    follow me.

    Offline area51

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #8 on: October 28, 2020, 11:30:27 am »
    If you welded the tank in a correct fasion, that weld will not fail. less can be guaranteed if you did that with the soldering iron method.
    '77 Dodge W-200 (M-884) soon to be camper

    Offline OldCycloneGuy

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #9 on: October 28, 2020, 07:47:58 pm »
    I put Jungle's tank in my Trail Duster, so yes, it fits a Ramcharger.

    He can make pretty much whatever you want.  He did a tank with an in-tank electric pump for me.
    I would rather have had many cars and have only one wife than have had many wives and had only one car.

    Offline snowfighter10

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #10 on: October 28, 2020, 08:40:30 pm »
    I have a pickup truck. A W100 with a 22 gallon tank. I was wondering if the tank Jungle Jim makes for the Ramcharger will fit in my truck.
    1988 W100 SWB, 5.2 TBI, NP435 4-speed.

    I offer neither pay, nor quarters, nor food;
    I offer only hunger, thirst, forced marches, battles
    and death.
    Let him who loves his country with his heart,
    and not merely with his lips,
    follow me.

    Offline Mad Max

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #11 on: October 29, 2020, 07:55:03 am »
    I'd say yes - I have put RC tanks in the pickup frames many times.  You have to sacrifice the spare tire 'area' and you'll need the RC front/rear tank crossmembers and tank retaining straps, but otherwise the answer to whether or not a RC tank can 'go' into a pickup frame, the answer is yes.  It's a great way to do an auxiliary tank or use it as a main tank - but regardless the frames are basically the same between a pickup and RC. 

    - Sam
    « Last Edit: October 29, 2020, 07:57:48 am by Mad Max »
    2002 Dakota Quad Cab 4x4 - 440/46rh/Atlas4/D60/14b/40s
    2007 Cummins Ram 3500 Megadually 4x4 "Big Mack" - 5.9/G56 6-speed
    2016 Durango Citadel AWD - 5.7 Hemi/8-spd auto
    1952 Willys M-38 "Poncho"

                    .there's always a way...

                           ...Molon Labe...

    Offline snowfighter10

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #12 on: October 29, 2020, 09:25:14 am »
    Thank you Mad Max. Jungle Jims tank fabrication looks bullet proof! I see it as definitely a strong option. Spare tire area is already empty. Previous owner installed some homemade reinforcement to the bumper pull hitch, which made the spare move into the bed. All that would have to go away if it might interfere with a rear mounted tank.  I know a guy who might have a Ramcharger fuel tank. Let's see how this tank repair of mine holds up first.
    1988 W100 SWB, 5.2 TBI, NP435 4-speed.

    I offer neither pay, nor quarters, nor food;
    I offer only hunger, thirst, forced marches, battles
    and death.
    Let him who loves his country with his heart,
    and not merely with his lips,
    follow me.

    Offline fenrir

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #13 on: October 29, 2020, 11:22:25 pm »
    Do you have pics of the repair you did?
    POSSESS:
    92 W250 Extended Cab Cummins*92 W250*85 W250*80 W150*79 D100*78W150*76 Ramcharger/1979 W250 frame*75 W100 440*73 W100*72 W100

    RETIRED:
    92 W250 Cummins*91.5 W250 Cummins*91.5 D250 Cummins*85 Ramcharger*85 W150 x 2*81 Trailduster*78 D150/RC Frame*79 W150*77 Trailduster*74 W100

    Offline snowfighter10

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #14 on: November 20, 2020, 09:16:12 am »
    I know it looks bad, but it is holding!
    1988 W100 SWB, 5.2 TBI, NP435 4-speed.

    I offer neither pay, nor quarters, nor food;
    I offer only hunger, thirst, forced marches, battles
    and death.
    Let him who loves his country with his heart,
    and not merely with his lips,
    follow me.

    Offline Mad Max

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #15 on: November 20, 2020, 09:28:35 am »
    ...it isn't leaking or wet, so IMO it looks fantastic {cool}
    2002 Dakota Quad Cab 4x4 - 440/46rh/Atlas4/D60/14b/40s
    2007 Cummins Ram 3500 Megadually 4x4 "Big Mack" - 5.9/G56 6-speed
    2016 Durango Citadel AWD - 5.7 Hemi/8-spd auto
    1952 Willys M-38 "Poncho"

                    .there's always a way...

                           ...Molon Labe...

    Offline snowfighter10

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    Re: Plastic welding on a cracked fuel tank
    « Reply #16 on: November 20, 2020, 10:00:55 am »
    Yep! So far so good!  As you can see the repair is right on the corner edge of the tank. Lots of tension there. My guess is that a previous owner lowered the tank, rear end first and bent the tank at the front. There are no impact marks anywhere, so I am going to assume that the crack was not caused by a rock or any kind of off road situation. Someone suggested that I might have had some sort of venting problem that was causing too much vacuum in the tank causing a crack to form. I would have to disagree because of the location of the crack. Plus, I checked my vent line and the charcoal cannister, everything was in order. Regardless, it's fixed now and I am so relieved! 

    Side note. The self locking nuts on the tank straps were a major pain in the butt! penetrating oil and a lot of elbow grease. I replaced the two original nuts with plain nuts for now until I can get some Nylock style locking nuts. So much easier to remove than the distorted thread type. Just in case I gotta drop the tank again. I also replaced the factory hose clamps at the top of the fuel tank along with new fuel lines. I made the lines about 6 inches longer to make it easier to reach the clamps. you know, just in case.
    1988 W100 SWB, 5.2 TBI, NP435 4-speed.

    I offer neither pay, nor quarters, nor food;
    I offer only hunger, thirst, forced marches, battles
    and death.
    Let him who loves his country with his heart,
    and not merely with his lips,
    follow me.

     

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