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Saturday, October 24, 2009

Fuel Tank Replacement

I have a completely redesigned and restored a 1973, 26-foot Open Road on a Chevy P30 chassis that I take all around the country. Despite its age, I've changed about everything it needed without much difficulty, until now. The gas tank just started to leak so I pulled it out and confirmed that there was in fact a rusted hole along the lower front seam. I have tried the local new parts stores, junk yards, and repair shops but no one has a replacement or wants to touch it. The tank is a simple solid rectangle about 48” x 24”x 15” and should be easily fabricated. Since the tank is already out, I could even supply it to someone as a sample. So my question to you is: How can I get this tank either restored or replaced?
Phil, (Conifer, CO)

Phil, I feel your pain. It’s difficult when one component holds up the whole restoration process. By your dimensions, your fuel container is probably an aftermarket tank installed by the coach manufacturer, and who knows (or can remember) which supplier actually built it. There are many aftermarket fuel tanks available; perhaps you can find one at a supplier called Transfer Flow (www.transferflow.com). They produce many fuel tanks for all kinds of vehicles. They may have one close to the size you need. The engineering, tooling and setup costs for a tank made to your specs is quite expensive. According to the people at Transfer Flow, it would be well over $1100.00 plus shipping. If it were me, I would opt for finding a replacement tank, as close in size to the original that still fits in that location on the chassis. No shop will try a repair (wisely so) because of the liability risk of welding on or near a gasoline container.


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