R8 Fuel Tank Issue
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  1. #1
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    Dec 2004
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    Default R8 Fuel Tank Issue

    Hey all!

    My R8 is having an issue, the carby keeps getting clogged with gunk that I think is coming from my gas tank. I figure it's time to remove it, have it cleaned and then refinished. I've heard the only way to do that is to pull the motor and drop the transmission down. Is this the only way? I ask because that's a bit more than I want to do myself, I'm hoping there is a workaround.

    Once it's out, my understanding is that I can take it to a radiator shop to rehab it.

    Anyone here go through this process and is there anything I need to watch out for?

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    In advance, thanks for the wisdom!

    Josh

  2. #2
    1000+ Posts renault8&10's Avatar
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    Default

    If you are talking about the rear tank behind the back seat I can guarantee you need to pull the engine out and significantly drop the transmission to get the tank out. There is a reverse hump in the tank which annoyingly doesn't clear the rear cross member or bulkhead over the bellhousing without dropping it down. By the time you do that, you may as well drop the transmission altogether.

    Either way, you definitely need to pull the engine out.
    Even removing the dividing panel between the engine and fuel tank is a pain if the engine is still in there.

    There's a few ways to do it depending on how you plan to go about it.

    Route 1 - Engine and Gearbox combined as one unit dropped down underneath car and wheeled out with the rear of the car raised. Pros - arguably the simplest method, less to disconnect. Cons - means having to disconnect the rear brake line and loss of fluid etc
    After disconnecting the gearchange lever at the front of the gearbox and the speedo cable; rear brake line (usually at the distribution valve) and the obvious ancillaries in the engine bay that will need to be disconnected (Accelerator cable, electrics etc). Then the engine and gearbox will only be attached by the two bolts on each side of the gearbox that pass through the cross member and chassis rails; and the two obvious engine mounts at the rear of the engine itself. With the gearbox suitably supported with a trolley jack or similar, you can raise the rear of the car with a chain block or other hoist arrangement and wheel the whole lot out from underneath the car. Note the rear of the gearbox (facing the front of car) will be the heavy point and will need supporting when moving or storage the engine and gearbox unit.

    Route 2 - Remove rear panel, radiator panel and engine out through the back leaving gearbox in situ (for now). Pros - easier, don't need to drain brake line Cons - more to disconnect. I actually find this easier though for most jobs I need to do. On an R10, you can get the motor out through the bootlid space once you've removed the radiator panel as they are slightly longer and of course the rear panel isn't normally removable.

    For this way, you just work from the back forwards disconnecting the obvious, then use a crane or hoist to lift the engine only out through the back. The car can stay on the ground on its' wheels.

    KB
    KB


  3. #3
    1000+ Posts renault8&10's Avatar
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    Default

    Also,
    Some people take the gearbox only out from underneath leaving the engine in place. That won't help you though in this instance I think, as the cross member would stay in place. It also leaves the engine supported only by the rear engine mounts and requires disconnecting the axles etc. For this reason I think is not for the feint hearted!
    KB


  4. #4
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    Default

    There is always the option of taking a look inside the tank to see how bad it is, there could be a rust/corrosion issue or maybe some gunk from dirty fuel over the years.

    Either way you can remove the trim in the rear parcel shelf and then remove the square steel plate that sits over the fuel gauge sender unit. This is glued on with sound deadening goo.

    After you remove the screws on the sender unit it can be carefully removed. While it is out you can check the condition of the float which could be near its use by date.

    You can then see how the inside of the tank looks. Both my cars had sender unit floats that needed replacing because they no longer floated after almost 50 years. The tanks themselves only needed draining completely by pumping everything out from the very bottom of the tanks. A good fuel filter before the pump does the rest and so far no more blockages.

    A neighbour who restores classic motor cycles uses an electrolysis process to to clean up old tanks with rust inside without removing them (and they come off a lot easier than removing an R10 /R8 tank).

    I canít recall the process however he said he googled it, I remember he used a 12-volt DC power source. I canít recall the materials involved in the process but he had great success with the tanks returning to near new on the inside.

    All this assumes the tank has no major signs of corrosion on the outside and it does not leak.

    Cheers

  5. #5
    Fellow Frogger! R8philSA's Avatar
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    Default

    I had the same problem when I first bought the 1964 Caravelle. Blockages in the carbie. I got lucky, I put a see through plastic fuel filter in the line from the petrol tank to the Fuel Pump and monitor it regularly. Surprising how many miles you can go before you see enough rubish in the filter to change it. Simpler than an engine/Gbox change, but never as thorough I'll admit..
    Cheers
    Phil

  6. #6
    Fellow Frogger!
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    If you tip the car to one side you can flush it out using the drain plug near the starter area.
    I replaced a few many years back in the workshop, not that bad a job really .

    Not a bad job when i think of some of the modern repairs i have done.

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