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I hate esprit fuel tanks!


jimblob

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My first Esprit had a drivers side aluminium tank but it smelt of petrol so I

spoke to a guy who made replacement fuel tanks and he said about a third of his work was replacing ally tanks with stainless ones.

Colin

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  • Gold FFM
On 6 January 2016 at 12:34, Qavion said:

I seem to remember reading in another fuel tank message thread on the Esprit forum that one manufacturer's tank was shaped so that it slipped in without the problems of the original tank. Perhaps it had curved edges or was slightly smaller.

Try the search function of the forum ;)

I've had a good search to try and find something, but have not had any luck.

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

For forum issues, please contact one of the Moderators. (I'm not one of the elves anymore, but I'll leave the link here)

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I thought I read on here somewhere that it was the curved  pipe that came out of the tank that meant it couldn't be lifted straight out, cutting it off means the tanks can be lifted straight out. I suppose my question is do the tanks need a curved pipe and would a straight one suffice ?

Colin

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 1/2/2016 at 05:37, jimblob said:

Called Andy Wiltshire as mentioned already he is a very busy boy currently has orders for 90+ tanks :o so then I tried esprit engineering and they are going to sort me out a new tank for next week  :thumbup:

Jimi,

I went trough the same ordeal. I removed the engine mounts and "dropped" the engine. Left tank could not be removed without the bottom tube being cut off.

I have redesigned tanks to be 1" narrower and bottom nipples are screw-on type, so you don't have to fight w/protruding pipes upon the installation. Used corrosion resistant 5086-H32 aluminium and pipes.

For more technical tips just Google this phrase:   X180 ESPRIT TURBO FUEL TANKS-DIY

Edited by MrDangerUS
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MrDangerUS

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sorry slow to reply atm got a lot of stuff going on. The new tank arrived with a bunch of other stuff (rubber grommet for fuel spout etc). Geoff @ esprit engineering has been great to deal with and the tank supplied looks to be very nicely put together. The new tank is in and I'm in the process of putting everything back together, I have used 15mm high density foam instead of the shitty reconstructed stuff that was on there originally(that shit stunk of petrol and its that smell that I wanted gone). The new tank much to my delight is smaller so refitting was much easier, Lotus should have made them this size to start with and made everyone's life more pleasant.  https://goo.gl/photos/wrgohcKs3HeHMBqT9

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Nice, and the new fuel tanks are Stainless Steel, What grade and thickness ?

How will you repair the cut out you did to remove the corroded original ones ?

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SJ have ally tanks on the shelf.  All the above posts make familiar reading, I too had to cut off the bottom feed tube.  The new ally tank dropped straight in as they have no flange.  One other thing I would say is get new seals especially for the sender.  I foolishly reused my old one which did not seal properly and when you filled the tank fuel seeped out and stunk the car out.  New one fitted now.

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Hi guys, i too am in the proceess of removing my fuel tank, mine is the right hand side as the l/h was repaired a few years ago, the tank is almost out, but is fouling on the plenum, i've undone the r/h engine mount and dropped it a little, but alas it still won't come.
I think the next step is to remove the plenum, i've undone the bolts, but it doesn't want to come away from the backplate, is there an easy way of seperating these as i don't want to damage the plenum, it looks fragile and i'm very tempted to hit it with something.
Incidentally the l/h tank was repaired at pnm, does anyone know how good their repairs are, or is it likely that this tank will need changing as well in the near future. Cheers Dave

IMG_3891.JPG

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19 hours ago, espritdave1 said:

Hi guys, i too am in the proceess of removing my fuel tank, mine is the right hand side as the l/h was repaired a few years ago, the tank is almost out, but is fouling on the plenum, i've undone the r/h engine mount and dropped it a little, but alas it still won't come.
I think the next step is to remove the plenum, i've undone the bolts, but it doesn't want to come away from the backplate, is there an easy way of seperating these as i don't want to damage the plenum, it looks fragile and i'm very tempted to hit it with something.
Incidentally the l/h tank was repaired at pnm, does anyone know how good their repairs are, or is it likely that this tank will need changing as well in the near future. Cheers Dave

IMG_3891.JPG

Have you cut the exit spout off? if I was doing this again I think that's one of the first things I would do, I was really struggling and doing this made it possible for me. If your refurbishing then obviously this isn't a option. 

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Hooray !! the tank is out, my problem being a sheared bolt on the plenum, i thought it would slide off but it sealed itself to the plenum cover, anyway i had to end up taking the whole inlet manifold off which was a complete pain in the a**
The tank itself wasn't as bad as i thought, a slight damp patch on the foam, i can't see a hole, but i imagine once i clean the surface rust off, theres a couple of pin holes in the metal, my options now are, do i repair or replace, if i replace, should i use alloy or an original metal tank (i know where there is one available), if alloy, where is the best place to get a tank, i already asked Matt Watts on here, but he wasn't interested.

IMG_3909.JPG

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Clean and repair £80, replace with alloy £400 (Axminster panels??). Looks repairable to me and there are plenty of products to make it last a long time but in the end it's your choice. If your steel item is cheap enough go with that, but strip and re-coat it with something decent first.

Taking mine out at this very moment with the benefit of an empty bay and it's still a nightmare with an overhanging cloud of curses against Lotus' cheap ass approach to safety related items. Seriously, by the time mine and yours were being made they must have known for years about the problems created by a lick of paint and absorbent foam, and yet didn't change their manufacturing process.

In the garage no-one can hear you scream 

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Trouble is - I expect the tanks lasted the lifetime of the warranty.

We are now a long way down the road and these are old cars now. So to be fair it's one of those things.

still a crappy design - but easily fixed.....

make sure you pressure test the tank if you do repair it. And coat it with loads of protection. Expanding foam is a good way to fix them back into place and hold then firm - will be a pig to get back out though

Only here once

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13 hours ago, ian29gte said:

I'm surprised Jim never offered to come round and pop your tanks out for you, Dave.

I hope to live the rest of my life and never have to look at an esprit tank ever again

12 hours ago, espritdave1 said:

Hooray !! the tank is out, my problem being a sheared bolt on the plenum, i thought it would slide off but it sealed itself to the plenum cover, anyway i had to end up taking the whole inlet manifold off which was a complete pain in the a**
The tank itself wasn't as bad as i thought, a slight damp patch on the foam, i can't see a hole, but i imagine once i clean the surface rust off, theres a couple of pin holes in the metal, my options now are, do i repair or replace, if i replace, should i use alloy or an original metal tank (i know where there is one available), if alloy, where is the best place to get a tank, i already asked Matt Watts on here, but he wasn't interested.

IMG_3909.JPG

Try Geoff at esprit engineering for the ally tank

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  • 4 weeks later...
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You don't need to pull the windows out - you can seal internally with a decent sealant gun. The ear fixing points do look like they leak - so you could seal them - but when driving in the rain - water is always going to get into the tank area one way or another

get rid of the foam that holds the water - and make sure the drainage hole is clear. If water gets in - you want it to get out easily. 

Here's a really horrible pair

image.thumb.jpeg.4150ffb71fea4cdcbc25984

Only here once

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While certainly leaking window seals can be a problem, on the several S4 and S4s's that I have pulled rusty tanks from, the window seals were perfectly intact. It appeared that the water ingress was through holes in the body at the fuel filler. In the pics below there is evidence of water dripping on the mounting bracket for the tank cover which is directly below the fuel filler opening. 

 

 

IMG_1488.jpg

IMG_1472.jpg

1995 S4s

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On 12/03/2016 at 20:15, Barrykearley said:

You don't need to pull the windows out - you can seal internally with a decent sealant gun. The ear fixing points do look like they leak - so you could seal them - but when driving in the rain - water is always going to get into the tank area one way or another

get rid of the foam that holds the water - and make sure the drainage hole is clear. If water gets in - you want it to get out easily. 

Here's a really horrible pair

image.thumb.jpeg.4150ffb71fea4cdcbc25984

I've repaired quite a few like that. After sandblasting I fill them with an inert gas at 1-2psi and use a special oxy torch with a flame about 6-8mm and set to 4psi .so the molten metal isn't blown away. Then it's just a matter of welding each of the holes, cleaning out any grit and applying Por 15 paint.

When refitting don't use any foam, I don't even like the closed cell stuff, but use those open weave doormats that are like tangled fishing line. With the weave against the metal any water and moisture can run out and dry quickly. 

Since I first did this 12 years ago none have rusted or leaked since.

DanR

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17 hours ago, lotus4s said:

While certainly leaking window seals can be a problem, on the several S4 and S4s's that I have pulled rusty tanks from, the window seals were perfectly intact. It appeared that the water ingress was through holes in the body at the fuel filler. In the pics below there is evidence of water dripping on the mounting bracket for the tank cover which is directly below the fuel filler opening. 

 

 

IMG_1488.jpg

IMG_1472.jpg

 

 

I had the same traces on my car, which made me wonder at the time whether rainwater was getting in not only from above, but being forced past the bolts that hold the brackets, with the action of the rear tyres throwing it around the wheelarch, as the bolts penetrate through into that space. I replaced the original bolts, which as usual were as rusty as hell, and sealed them up. I have no idea whether that was what was happening, but I felt it was another possible covered off.

Margate Exotics.

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cheers - these tanks are not going to be going anywhere near my car.

I simply can't guarantee the thickness of good steel - what the condition is like inside etc. Repairing these tanks would be like fixing a parachute to me - nope - just ain't doing it. Safety first with these things.........

Only here once

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Alloy 5052 or 5086  0.090"-0.100" thick, is the way to go.

Alloy 5086 offers excellent corrosion resistance with good formability, so it is commonly used in marine applications, such as in ships, oil rigs, tanks, and pressure vessels. 

When a combination of weldability and resistance to salt water is required, Alloy 5052 stands up to the challenge. It is commonly used for the bodies of boats, buses, trucks, and trailers, as well as for chemical drums. That's what I have used.

I've made them 1" narrower (so they would slide in with ease), but the same height as the old tanks, fully baffled (0.050") and containing a swirl pot.

Total weight savings over the old steel tanks = 18 lbs with 24 gal capacity and built-in Porsche928, PN 92820108401 strainer.

Additional Prodex insulation added only 4lbs.

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IMG_2963.JPG

IMG_2965.JPG

Edited by MrDangerUS
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MrDangerUS

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