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Randy Pflanzer
Technology Professionals Consortium
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  02/01/13 - Reformatted web page.


Fuel Tank

First step in assembling the tank is to gather up all the parts.  At this point, you need to decide on what instruments you want to use so you can obtain the right sender unit.  I went with all Autometer gauges so I ordered up the appropriate sending unit for my gauge.  The part numbers are on my build sheet.  Right off the bat, I am not terribly impressed with the tank itself.  The plastic is very soft and I can see why some guys have complained about the fittings leaking.  I guess it is a reasonable compromise for cost and no one will see the tank anyway.  I could weld up an aluminum one if I was so inclined but for now, let's see how this one works out.  No need in making the project any longer than it already will be.

The fuel sender must be adjusted so that the float reaches its full extension up and down without hitting the tank.  The instructions came with a table that provides the measurements of the arm, but they didn't work out as well as I wanted them to, so I discarded them and did my own calculations.  I have the arm adjusted so the float will be at the bottom of its arc and remain about 1/4" above the bottom of the tank.  It will also reach to its high point and be about 1/2" below the top of the tank.  That's about as close as I could get it.  The adjustments are limited by the various screw holes in the arm.  I also pulled each screw one at a time, added a drop or Red Locktite, and reassembled.  I don't want it coming apart in the tank.  The other fittings were added per the plans, but NOT with JB Weld, as the plans suggest.  I used Permatex Form-a-Gasket on all the fittings, screwed them in, and let them sit for 24 hours.

I was disappointed in the strapping and rubber cushions.  The plans don't say a word about how the rubber strips are attached to the strap and the straps come with three holes countersunk in them. but there's not mounting hardware in the bag.  After doing some digging around in the picture gallery, I happened upon a picture that showed the rubber strip pop riveted to the strap.  I used some aviation rivets that are soft aluminum and used them to mount the rubber to the strap.  I ignored the existing holes and drilled my own.  The head of the rivet is on the tank side of the strap.  When it is cinched down, it countersinks into the rubber so it won't rub on the tank.  Even if it did, the aluminum is very soft (these are canopy rivets) and they would take a long time to rub through that tank, if ever.

I also don't care for the mounting bolt method shown in the plans.  I used double nuts and washers to cinch the bolt down to the frame, but as you can see in the pictures, the tension is bending these bolts.  Next time I go to the hardware store, I will pick up come Grade 8 bolts for this and replace them.  Since I will disassemble this for paint, I did not install the foam strips that protect the tank from the frame.  I'll do that in final assembly.

UPDATE:  I replaced the original mounting bolts on the tank with some stainless bolts as pictured above.  Rather than cinch them down on the frame mount, I let the head float free and I added a cinch nut to the strap nut.  That should hold things from coming loose, won't rust, and keeps the bending loads to a minimum.

The fuel filler hose is installed using clamps.  Make sure the clamps are pointed down so you can get to them with the body on.  The hose that is provided is cut off at the elbow as shown above.  HOLD ON TO THE PIECE you cut off.  That is used at the other end of the filler tube to connect up to the neck installed in the body.  Good thing I ran into a picture of that so I could dig it out of the trash.  It sure would be nice if they put something in the plans about that.  Another hint I was provided by fellow builders is be sure to not put any gas into the tank until you are in final assembly.  The plastic swells with the gas and that will make it very difficult to remove the tank later.

Emergency Brake

First step in assembling and installing the emergency brake is to gather up all the parts.  Ignore all the packages of hardware in the picture.  It seems that on my order, the hardware provider decided to give me 5 sets of everything.

Before frilling any holes, I wanted to make sure that the cables could be located out of harms way so I mounted the cables to the brakes first.  I followed the instructions from the Lokar kit and attached the cable to the clip and then the clip to the bracket.

The cables come off the brakes to the front and they have to turn 360 degrees to get to the mounting location in the center of the tunnel.  I wanted to make sure that the cable did not chafe against the frame anywhere and missed the bump stop.  I installed a clamp on the underside of the frame to hold the cable sheathing off the frame where the 4-link mounts.  This picture is of the left side looking up and to the rear.

Before drilling the holes for the cables, I mounted the handle so I could ensure alignment with the handle.  There's no measurements anywhere to tell you "where" to mount the handle.  I sat inside the body shell and determined that I wanted the front of the handle at the point where the interior tunnel starts to upslope to the instrument panel.  I used the attachment hardware that came with the handle and bolted it up to the angle per the plans,

I then located the mounting holes in the flat stock to align the cables with the mounting on the handle.  To drill out these holes, I had to remove the rear shocks and lower the rear end.  I then mounted the cable stays, trimmed the cable per the instructions, and mounted them so the just reached the rear cross member in the trunk.  That picture is down the page a little.

Up front, I pulled the cables tight and used my torch to trim off and melt the ends so they wouldn't fray.

I also installed clamps on the cables to hold them underneath the truck cross member.  That finishes up the emergency brake install.

Now it's time to install the brake lines.  That work is on the next page.