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#854851 07/28/21 10:04 pm
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I have a pinhole in the gas tank. It's located in the front, inside the frame channel by the seam (but not the seam), about even with the emblem. I've tried JB Weld Steel Stik, but it still leaks. Any recommendations? Thanks.


1970 Tiger
1980 Ducati Darmah
Triumphs on eBay
Russ #854856 07/28/21 10:39 pm
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https://ripsandrides.com/best-motorcycle-tank-sealers/

I have been very happy with POR15.
Proper preparation is a must. I rotated and shook my tank till I thought my arms were going to fall off.

Last edited by desco; 07/28/21 10:45 pm. Reason: addition

1968 T120R
1972 T120RV
Any advice given is without a warranty expressed or implied.
desco #854857 07/28/21 10:47 pm
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Ditto on using POR-15 fuel tank sealer. I have used it on three different tanks over the last five years and all are still providing leak proof service. You must follow the directions to the letter to achieve a trouble free result, especially when drying the tank out before applying the sealer.

Russ #854884 07/29/21 7:35 am
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I read that you can rub a bar of soap over a pin hole to seal it until you can fix it properly.

Dave

Russ #854897 07/29/21 12:15 pm
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Chewing gum is better than soap.


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Russ #854898 07/29/21 1:13 pm
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JB Weld has a sealer specifically for fuel tanks is that the one you used?


TD

Russ #854899 07/29/21 1:14 pm
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JB Weld has a sealer specifically for fuel tanks is that the one you used?


TD

Russ #854900 07/29/21 1:23 pm
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I went to the JB Weld website, they recommended I use "Steel Stick" which I used. It was a two part putty that you knead and press into place.

Given that JB Weld isn't going to work, I think my next option is a tank sealer. It's between Caswell and POR-15, leaning toward the Caswell.

Any opinions?


1970 Tiger
1980 Ducati Darmah
Russ #854901 07/29/21 1:27 pm
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1970 T120R - 'Anton'
1970 Commando - 'Bruno'
1967 T120R - 'Caesar'
1968 Lightning - 'Dora'
Russ #854902 07/29/21 3:18 pm
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The JB Weld tank repair works. IMO it’s better off being used as a “emergency” side of the road type of repair. That said I have a repair I did with it that’s still holding after many years. There’s photos of the stuff being used on Bryan’s ( of Bryan and Marie fame) tank at the TSMR’s 10th anniversary and that was over a decade ago……..I do believe that’s he’s reported recently that it’s still holding

Not sure why your repair didn’t hold but if it was me I’d clean the area real good (down to clean bare metal) and try it again…..maybe you didn’t use enough or get it mixed well. For both of the repairs I’ve mentioned the holes were small and a thumbnail sized repair was used. I’m thinking they were close to an 1/8” thick?? Ugly but…. both were on the under side and out of sight.

Again I think it’s more of a temporary repair but the stuff does work and is a staple in my traveling tool kit.

It’s a lot easier to redo than a failed tank liner. While you’re at it……take something “pointy” and check the rest of the tank for thin spots.

Just my opinion, worth what you paid for it.

Gordon…..who with the (long distance) help from Don Roe made a soldered repair to a tank for the first time. Single pin hole in the bottom, pretty much out of sight. Now THAT’S a method I’ll use again.

PS……the soldered repair I did……someone had tried an epoxy repair of some type but placed it over the paint. Because of the leak (?) the paint had separated from the tank surface and fuel was migrating between the paint/tank/epoxy. I was nervous as a prostitute in church but once I settled down by reminding myself I knew how to solder……it flowed like butter.

Last edited by Gordon Gray; 07/29/21 4:15 pm.

Gordon Gray in NC, USA.........my son says..... "Everybody is stupid about something"
Russ #854909 07/29/21 5:17 pm
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There was a time when a fibreglass repair would work well, but no more. I've used "Seal-All" in recent years, lasts for a couple of years and then the seepage starts. As Gordon G mentions, a soldered repair can work, but either need to be brave with the gas torch, or use a big iron to put heat into the steel.

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Russ #854912 07/29/21 5:52 pm
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I have a repair in the primary case (oil not gasoline...) done with a JB weld similar product and is holding perfectly fine the oil inside after 13000Km or more. The hole is way big; around 1/2 inch.
Weld a tank is not so difficult you just need to get rid of the gases; clean it with several things plenty of times and just that but you lose the paint work...
-Years ago I repaired trucks (cars) tanks with fiberglass and still in service.

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Russ #854917 07/29/21 7:06 pm
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I used the Caswell kit to seal a pinhole in a Tiger 750 US Spec tank 3 years ago. Worked perfectly.

But.....I bought the motorcycle sized kit and it's barely enough. It went off so fast that I have a thick coat on the bottom half of the tank and nothing up top - but since the leak was close to the bottom it did the job.

I did a Daytona (UK Spec) tank 2 years ago and used the car sized kit. It was about 50% more than I needed.

No sign at all of the epoxy peeling off - it looks as good now as the day I applied it. But follow the instructions to the letter.

Russ #854996 07/30/21 11:47 pm
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I fixed a leak in my Daytona tank with solder. Since I'm a chicken, and don't have a big soldering iron, I used a 3/4 inch bolt with the head ground flat. I heated it with a propane torch. While it was heating, I cleaned the area with a stainless brush and some Ruby Fluid liquid flux. I had let the tank sit empty for a couple of days, and then used the compressor to ventilate it for about five minutes. Without an open flame, it was pretty safe.
Once I had the hole soldered, (It was really easy), I bought a POR15 kit. I have used both Caswell and POR15 in the past. Both are excellent IF you follow the instructions exactly. You cannot overdo the cleaning part.
(If you want to be bored, I can relate the whole process. I think I prefer the POR15. It's just a shade easier to use.)
I used two rolls of painters tape to cover the outside of the tank so I wouldn't damage the paint. I used the POR15 as directed, with a couple of old almost useless petcocks. When it was time to drain the excess, I removed the petcock, and smeared the sealer over a small area around the petcock. In my infinite wisdom, I used some acetone to wipe off the sealer. That's why I have a damaged paint area at the petcock!
The good news is, the leak is gone, and you can barely see the damage.


Hugh: Proof the Dodo is not extinct
1974 Daytona project
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Russ #854999 07/31/21 12:17 am
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A tip for making sure that a gas tank does not contain any gas residues before attempting to solder/braze/weld it with a flame.
This derived from repairing tanks at road races with twenty minutes to go before the next race.
Remove the tank, empty it of gas and remove gas tank cap and petcocks.
Connect a length of rubber hose to the exhaust of a van , start the van engine and put the other end of the hose into the gas tank neck.
Run the van at a fast idle for five minutes.
Remove the hose and repair the leak.
Replace cap and petcocks , replace on bike and fill up with gas.
Start the bike and win the race (well--hopefully!).
HTH

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Russ #855005 07/31/21 12:51 am
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Genius.


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1972 T120RV
Any advice given is without a warranty expressed or implied.
Russ #855023 07/31/21 7:24 am
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Could you fill the tank with an inert gas from a cylinder and keep it flowing in while you weld?

Dave

Russ #855036 07/31/21 11:52 am
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The way Tridentman suggests is the way my dad always did it.

The heat and carbon monoxide from the exhaust forces the gas fumes out of the tank, so it's safe to weld.

Russ #855037 07/31/21 11:59 am
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Depending on where the leak is, filling the tank with water but leaving an airgap below the work site eliminates the fire hazard (probably).

I doubt if the tip of a big soldering iron would ignite petrol vapour, perhaps someone else can try!

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Okay I wasn’t going to share this because I told the truth when I said it was my first time. I had always been worried about blowing me and the tank up. I have a friend (RIP) who was attempting to repair a storage box (weld) that had been used to store explosives. The box was empty. It didn’t go well.

I figured out a long time ago that you can’t know everything……my son says everyone is stupid about something. So it helps to know folks that know what you don’t. Don welds/solders on tanks a lot. I was going to make another epoxy repair when he reminded me IHO it was temporary at best. So I got him to tell me how he does it.

Simply flush it out with water. I stuck the garden hose in it and ran water through it for a bit. Turned the water off turned it over and shook out as much as I could. Then used a hobbyist type torch kit I had. Mapp and O2. Small adjustable flame. Regular solder not silver, flux paste. First try I was still nervous. Stopped. I was trying to melt the solder with the flame and I know better. Took a deep breath and tried again. Flame to the tank and let it heat it…..solder follows the heat so this time I made sure the metal was hot enough before I presented the solder. It flowed on in a flash. If I was doing wire I’d call it tinning. Rinsed the tank out with alcohol and blow dry with hair dryer. Pressure test showed no leak and it’s had fuel in it ever since.

Gordon

Last edited by Gordon Gray; 07/31/21 4:36 pm.

Gordon Gray in NC, USA.........my son says..... "Everybody is stupid about something"
Russ #855074 07/31/21 9:05 pm
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Thanks, Gordon.

I like the alcohol-rinse idea to dry out the water.

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Russ #855185 08/02/21 3:01 pm
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Thanks for the replies. I think I'm going with the Caswell. I understand it's not a "permanent", but either am I. Curious which will last longer!!! smile


1970 Tiger
1980 Ducati Darmah
Russ #855194 08/02/21 6:08 pm
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So I encountered a leak on my Trident tank from the front stud puncturing thru the tank, not wanting to cut the threaded plate off and damage the shiny paint, I opted to try Permatex's variant of the JB Weld Tank Sealer stick which honestly has been working flawlessly over the past 3yrs. I'm sure at some point I will need to perform the correct repair and weld it closed.

The procedure I have personally used for preparing a tank for welding (without fully stripping the paint) is remove the petcocks, drain any petrol, wash inside with soapy water, blow dry with compressed air, rinse with Isopropyl Alchohol and blow dry with compressed air. Once these steps are complete I move to running car exhaust thru the tank fo roughly 5 minutes or until the tank is warm to touch. Now were ready for the welding. Its still un-nerving while your getting ready to braze with flame or weld with TIG or MIG to repair the leak with the inital strike thining in the back of your mind, did I really get this tank as clean as possible? I will also take wet rags and place around the repair area to help minimize any heat transfer to the surrounding painted surfaces to lessen the damage. Knock on wood, I have done this to several tanks and have been succesful.

I'm not a fan of sealers, my 1969 T100C which was picked up from an estate sale had sealer introduced by a well known but no longer in bussiness British Bike Shop in my area. Thought it was kinda weird the a steel tank which was freshly painted had a liner in it but I looked the other way. I found out why it was introduced once it started blowing petrol all over the bike while riding down the road. Come to find out the tank was punctured at the front left mounting stud by using a bolt in lieu of the actual stud, its best to try and fix the issue properly as the "easy fix" will usually fail when least expected or wanted.


1955 BSA Bantam D1 Plunger
1956 BSA A10RR Street and LSR Bike
1961 BSA C15S
1966 BSA spitfire
1969 Triumph T100C
1970 Triumph TR6R
1970 Triumph TR6C
1972 BSA Lightning LSR Bike
1974 Triumph T150V
Russ #855204 08/02/21 9:12 pm
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Hi, I also had pin hole near center tank seam. After much debate I chose Caswell. It has a very long term success record. It is used extin industrial applications. POR15 was a close 2nd place in my view.

Follow instructions exactly. The final cleaning/rinse must be acetone. Ace Hardware sells it. Acetone damages most paints insanity.

I have very nice original paint. I used Kreem paint mask to save/protect paint. It’s like a white glue looking liquid. I used 2 coats. Then covered tank with glad wrap, 2 layers as paint mask is very fragile. Evey1 drop of water or sweat will remove it. It peels easily & water takes it right off. The glad wrap protected it.

Preparation is critical. Acetone is a must. Let acetone dry well. It wants to evaporate quickly. Ace sells a rubber stopper for filler. Tap holes can be a problem. I made 1/4” BPS plugs. I got the tap & die cheap direct from China on eBay. You’ll need to thread out the sealant from tap bores after full cure.

100% coverage is not easy. Especially on later tanks with center tube. You’ll need a way larger kit than you may think. There is a lot of waste. No cure, just how it is. Key to good coverage is roll tank fairly slowly so sealant has time to fully run. A small mirror & flashlight you can see progress to a degree. Resin is very time sensitive. I used 2 timers. During you flushing practice draining tank. Not so easy as you’d think. Finally use small brush & put sealant at inside of neck where the tin is rolled. A common source of leakage.

Do not heat force cure time or set in sun. 100% cure is key!! I did full 14 days in shade of garage the entire time. First 8 hours yes’s outshine shade. It nearly killed me to wait 2 weeks! Many failures were/are do to not fully curing. Done correctly you’ll be rewarded with many years of good service. I used clear as I wanted original look. I had some rust pits with light rust that sheet rock nails couldn’t remove. Instructions said no problems. I keep inspecting. Rust is exactly the same now so sealant has stopped rust.

I used automotive sized kit. After curing I was able to carefully inspect coverage. Was fully covered even all sides of center tube. ‘73 Tiger. So extra cost was worth it to me.

A huge amount of effort but the results are worth it.
Don


1973 Tiger 750
Russ #855226 08/03/21 2:04 am
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FWIW, I did several tanks with Caswell. It's a great product. For me, the biggest upside is it will fix a leaking fiberglas tank. I had a Montesa that had tiny bubbles coming through the paint. I set it aside for a couple of months with no petcock or cap. I rinsed it monthly with degreaser . Probably Purple Power from Dollar General.
I did a double cleaning following Caswell's directions. Once the sealer was in, and cured, the tank was as rigid as new, and still doesn't leak. That's been about twenty years ago. I did two Norton tanks the same way. When they start leaking, they are flexible. Once sealed, they feel like a metal tank.

Gordon, you are much braver than I am! I don't think I'd use an open flame on an oil tank, let alone a gas tank. Even after I had "cleaned" it. The guy who taught me what little I know about metal repairs always said to use an iron to solder, not a flame. I don't know why, other than "I said so."


Hugh: Proof the Dodo is not extinct
1974 Daytona project
A couple others

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