White flakes in gas tank

Discussion in 'General Harley Davidson Topic' started by BOBFLHTC, Mar 11, 2010.

  1. BOBFLHTC

    BOBFLHTC Active Member

    273
    0
    0
    While I was riding last weekend my bike stalled out like it was running out of fuel even though I had over a half a tank left. I switched to reserve and it came back on. A mile or two down the road I switched back from reserve and it continued to run ok. When I got home I took the Petcock off and drained all the gas. There were small white flakes in it. I am assuming that the flakes had coated the Petcock screen and temporarily blocked the flow of gas. Are the white flakes a factory installed coating breaking down on the inside of the tank or is it something that has built up over time ?

    Thanks
    Bob
     
  2. gasbag

    gasbag Active Member

    356
    28
    1
    I don't think the tanks are coated. I could be wrong but that hasn't happened yet this year.:p

    I would question if they came from the pump at a gas station. Maybe someone's underground tank needs cleaning or their filter is defective.

    I had to clean a tank that had rust. I put 1/2 quart of fuel in it and a box of bb's and shook it like crazy. I then drained and rinsed several times with fuel. It worked. If these flakes don't go away you might try that.

    I am also sure someone else in here who is 10 times smarter than I will have better responses.
     
  3. Chopper

    Chopper Senior Member

    1,632
    48
    18
    Sorry Gasbag, but I think they were epoxy coated in 85 but it would not be the first time for me this year:) If you look inside of the fuel tank when it's almost empty you should be able to see if anything is peeling, maybe?

    Harley Davidson Community
     
  4. BOBFLHTC

    BOBFLHTC Active Member

    273
    0
    0
    I'll have to remember the BB trick. Sounds like a good idea to get at the hard to get to places. I was thinking of removing the Petock and gas guage and filling it with water and scrubing with a toilet brush. I did take a look inside and it did appear that it is a coating that is peeling off.

    Thanks
    Bob
     
  5. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    5,277
    133
    156
  6. bikerfishman

    bikerfishman Active Member

    139
    0
    0
    Could be the tank was treated with Kreem at one time and it was not mixed properly prior to the aplication.

    As far as the water and toillet brush I would stay away from booth of those.

    Safety glasses and a high pressure air line might work for you then re kreem the tank.
     
  7. Chopper

    Chopper Senior Member

    1,632
    48
    18
    From personal experience don't wast your time, buy a new tank if it's that bad, once the coating starts peeling it will never stop and any aftermarket fix will only add to the problem, have had friends that tried every costing available in brand new fuel tanks and sooner or later you'll have problems, they have. That's why Harley is going to NiClad carbon steel as it said in the link posted above, they are getting away from epoxy coatings because of the problems with peeling down the road. All this is just my personal opinion with a little bit of experience, if anybody has had a good experience with a fuel tank coating that has lasted more then a year, let me know, I'm curious.
     
  8. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    5,277
    133
    156
    I have done 2 tanks with re lining first one was a bit over 4 years ago and its still good as ive still got it
    the other one was 3 years ago but i havent seen that bike for almost a year but last time i saw it all seemed to be well
    i may see it once the weather picks up and the bike turns up needing assistance

    Brian
     
  9. Breeze3at

    Breeze3at Well-Known Member

    4,645
    83
    124
    I'm with Chopper on the aftermarket tank lining. Kreem did a lot of advertising in the early '90's. It seemed like good stuff, for a while. Once it starts coming loose, you might as well toss the tank. As for cleaning a rusted non coated tank, I've had fair success by putting some diesel or kerosene in the tank and then dumping my box of spare nuts and bolts in with it. A lot of good shaking, upside down, sideways etc. The irregularity of the hardware does a fair job of removing the rust. Side benefit, your spare hardware is clean! When tank is empty, I dump a pint of OSPHO in it and shake it around real good, then drain. DO NOT LET OSPHO SIT for long. Ospho is a green stuff that turns rust black and stops the process. When the Ospho dries, it leaves white resudue that needs to be rinsed off. Then it is unaffected by gas. Ospho is NOT environmentally friendly and the only place I can find it now is ACE hardware.
     
  10. whatyardwork

    whatyardwork Banned

    829
    0
    4
    Ive had some expierienc with tank lineing.In the past it worked.Seems the added ethanol eats that as fast as it eats fuel lines.

    If you try to reline it you need to pickle it with acetone.It will eat the existing liner clean so you can reline it.Keep in mind acetone eats paint so as Chopper said, may be cheeper to start over.