Whether you have a motor car, motorcycle, tractor, garden machine or in fact any item that has a fuel tank that takes Bio-petrol, diesel or a derivative of these, you will know the problem of rust and its destroying nature. In the past when leaded fuels were in use, the problem was greatly minimised as the lead caused a barrier coat. As unleaded petrol is now used for reasons of health and environmental safety, older vehicles and engines have to cope with it.
Modern fuels can also cause problems with fibreglass/composite tanks, as the polyester resins and plastics are susceptible to attack by the chemicals put into the lead free petrol. It may also affect aluminium but currently AGR has no data to support this although water will cause corrosion on aluminium.
Ethanol is a solvent to fibreglass and plastic and being able to attract water to it can cause rust. The rusting inside a fuel tank will weaken the structure of the tank and can cause loose particles of rust that can choke the fuel line, carburettor or fuel management system. Also the added MTBE (methyl-tertiary-butyl-ether), which is being increasingly added to improve the anti-knock performance of the petrol, which Lead previously offered. This group of chemicals work to enable the petrol to burn more cleanly. MTBE assists in the decay problems associated with Ethanol
The Ethanol can also cause serious problems with the old tank linings that were made of a polyester resin.
Prevention and Remedy
The best preventative and remedial measure is to kill or remove the active rust and then to apply a special 2-pack Novolac Epoxy interior coating, which is designed specifically to be resistant to all modern fuels that have an ethanol content. This Epoxy has much better bond strength than single component products, with strengths of up to 3000 PSI, and this higher strength reduces the need for a clinically clean/smooth surface, as the epoxy actually prefers to bond to a rougher surface created by the rust. Our phenol novolac is more thixotropic, which means it 'hangs' on the tank walls during the coating process. This gives a thicker overall coating.
mixed fuel, petrol/oil tanks
non-potable water tanks.
Where I am asked to preserve the paint finish of the tank I apply a plastic film and wrap the tank ensuring that the areas around the petrol cap are taped. I apply a first layer, and then a sheet of aluminium foil around the petrol filler cap area followed by a further plastic wrap layer. This cocoons the tank and provides defence against the products and physical damage from the outside. However, when removing an old liner, faults in the metal can be exposed such as pin hole rust and in the de-rusting process the rust can be removed making small holes which can allow chemical out into the cocoon, I can not then be held responsible for paint damage outside my control. After this I commence the tank lining process.
To prepare and line a motorcycle tank, metal or fibreglass, that does not require any internal preparation other than checking its internal condition, cleaning and drying along with wrapping to protect from damage. £200.00
To de-rust or convert rust and line a metal motorcycle tank. £210.00
To remove a previous liner from the inside of a metal motorcycle tank. £35.00 to £50.00
Where the tank requires blanking plates to be made, as in the situation of removing a fuel sensor etc. extra cost may be incurred and will be discussed after initial inspection.
For other tanks that require work, please ask for a quote or call to discuss. I do not take in Car tanks or carry out a derusting service on its own.
It can be so much better to have a tank restored in this way and maintain its originality than to buy a new replacement part. Some tanks are irreplaceable and in the case of Vintage items have to be made from scratch.