|     home

TIP #13

It is not uncommon to get an old bike which the gas tank is rusted inside and find out you have a hole in it. If you are as lucky as me and cannot find another original gas tank for your bike, there are two things you can do. The first is to replace the tank from another bike which is easier, but its not original. Or you can try to repair the tank. Caution do not try to repair a gas tank yourself unless you know what you are doing. Why do you ask. Even if a tank has not had gas in it for a couple of years it may still explode if you try to weld. Please read the following.
First prepare your tank. Remove gas cap, fuel pet cock decals or anything that come off. The next step, from the outside remove the rusted area that is thin or rusted. Once you have gotten this far the next step is to get some stone. I recommend a small round stone from the garden the size of a 3/8" diameter ball. (Now you must think I'm a nuts.) Well if you don't have any, go to a garden store and buy some. Now that you got the stone great. Now block all the holes with tape except the gas cap hole. Now go ask your mom or wife for the dish soap.( Now you must really think I'm crazy.)  Mix a cap full into a quart of water and pour it into the tank. Now dump the stone about a handful or a little more into the tank. You must be wondering why stone. Well this acts like a media to remove the loose rust inside the tank. By shaking the tank the stones bounce against the walls and the soap washes. (Where a rain coat and do this outside.) You will have to do this a couple of times until you feel it has done the job.  Once you feel the inside is clean and free of dirt place the tank in the oven for 24 hours at 150° F to dry it out and to remove any slight chance of gas pockets in the tank. Once you have done this, smell the tank to see if there is any order of gas in the tank. No order then it will be safe to weld. Cut your self a piece of steel and weld over the hole. Put water into the tank and check for leaks. No leaks  put the tank into the oven to dry well. Now remove all the paint from the outside of the tank. Either sand blast or using a steel brush. Prime and repaint to the desired color. Good luck and be carefull.