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New fuel tanks

Panama

Forum Website User
VOC Member
What experience and advice can I get regarding replacing a Series C fuel tank. I know that they are available from India, but I have heard nothing about the quality and fit. The Spares Company lists a replacement fuel tank, but I have been unable to get any reliable information about where it is made and the quality.

I am not desperate at this point, but I am working to address a small leak at the rear mounting lug and mild rust. I just want to be prepared for the day If the tank can no longer serve its intended purpose.

I would be interested in feedback from those who have bought either the Indian tank or the Spares Company tank regarding problems and how they were resolved.
 

davidd

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Dear Panama,

The tank made in India that I examined, which was the plain steel $500 version, was poor in fit and poor in quality. The owner, who may jump in as he is a member, showed it to me with the idea that I might be able to rectify some of the design errors. The petcock bungs were welded in at a fairly acute angle so that they were not straight down when mounted on the bike. The top plane of the tank descends quickly from the oil hole, eliminating some of the capacity as well as changing the line of the tank. I did not measure the thickness of the material, but when the tank was mounted it split rather quickly and the owner then advertised for and purchased an original tank. I did not see the tank after the split, but I will say that I think many owners underestimate the amount of engineering that went into the underneath portion of the Vincent tank. I am not an engineer but my guess is that the stamping and construction details on the bottom of the tank were developed over a long period of time and have proven reliability. They need to be replicated exactly for the same reliability. I would conclude that it is well worth fixing an original rather than buying any of the tanks from India that are currently available. I think that a properly manufactured tank from India is possible, but I bet it would cost the same as a used original.

David
 

Ken Tidswell

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
i understand that the Spares Co has sent a jig to India so the lugs are in the right place, i also assume the taps will be in the right place and at the correct angle.
Ken
 

Albervin

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Mine is a disaster. None of the mounting points line up, the nipples for the tyre pump are incorrectly spaced and the threads for the petrol taps had to be re-cut. A total waste of money.
 

Mark Fisher

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Although I did not jump in as quickly as David anticipated (been at the Barber festival), I'm here now! Here's the deal: My original shadow tank was in very poor shape internally and full of braze, so after a couple of failed attempts to stop it leaking, I decided to retire it until a permanent fix could be found. I bought an indian fuel tank from a source in florida (on E bay) which David looked at for me, it wasn't even close and would not go on the bike at all. I returned it (at my expense!) and got my money back. Note that before I ordered it I asked them point blank whether it would fit...they assured me it would....bollocks! I then got another tank (still indian) from a different source that actually fitted, it was about 1/4" short at the back and the shape wasn't quite right but it was OK. Unfortunately after a nice paint job and being fitted for about 500 miles it cracked at the rear...AAAARRRRRGHHHH! On inspection I noted that the rear mount was fitted and made differently to the original, also much flimsier. That was it for me, I bought a really good original tank from a member in Australia, that has turned out to be excellent... thanks Franco!
mark
 

Albervin

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
What is it with Ronald !!!!!!!!! McDonald!!!!?????????
Why send a jig to India when there is no guarantee of a tank fit for purpose? Or is there some quality control money back guarantee VOCS certificate of issue? The next time I receive a part from the VOCS that does not fit, was not ordered or in an way does not comply with my order, I will send back COD. As a sounding board here in Australia I am getting a lot of feedback of duplicated orders, part orders and 2 year back orders. Just the facts! Of course there are still parts that don't fit but there are no feedback cards anymore.
 

Tom Gaynor

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Mercifully, I don't need a new tank. I simply sealed my leaking old one with POR15, which I bought from Eastman. Or is it Eastwood? That was 5 or 6 years ago. I didn't bother with the recommended cleaning products (Marine Clean and something else). The results are wholly positive: it doesn't leak, and looks inside as though it has been galvanised. I think the finish may actually be zinc phosphate. UK fuel (I use cooking unleaded, 95 octane RON) is just like US fuel, has 10% of farm subsidy fluid added, i.e. contains just as much ethanol.
(If bikes on methanol - the same stuff - consume 4 or 5 times more fuel per mile as bikes on petrol do, please tell me how adding ethanol makes it "bio-fuel". I can see how using more fuel will increase tax revenues, but don't see how running bikes on vodka saves the planet. BIO-fuel?
On the other hand, I have a racer tank sealed, after a crash, with Petseal, which is resin based. I have had no trouble with this for 8 or 9 years, but always used Avgas. Avgas isn't screwed about by oil companies, since fuel troubles in an aircraft are not good news. There is no roadside parking in the sky. This year I lent the bike to someone who ignored my instructions, and used premium unleaded, and an octane booster, for ONE weekend. The Petseal began to dissolve...
Moral: sealers exist that can cope with ethanol-diluted petrol. Better, I think to buy a tank the right shape, and seal it, than one that doesn't need sealing, but doesn't fit. And a tank that fits could always be welded...
 

clevtrev

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Moral: sealers exist that can cope with ethanol-diluted petrol. Better, I think to buy a tank the right shape, and seal it, than one that doesn't need sealing, but doesn't fit. And a tank that fits could always be welded...

NOT if it has been treated with a sealer ! At least I will not touch it. Neither will someone in South Wales.
 
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