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Replacement Gas Tanks - Which brand to get?

Discussion in '1969-1972 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by Greg72, Nov 12, 2001.

  1. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    In the near future I'll be doing a ORD rear-shackle flip....and you gotta pull the tank anyway, so I was thinking about going to a larger gas tank at the same time. I am only aware of two options:

    Northwest Metal Products - 37 Gallon
    AeroTanks - 40 Gallon


    To the best of my knowledge, these are both metal tanks. I know that there are poly tanks out there too, though I'm not sure if the capacity is similar to the ones listed above.

    Does anyone know of other brands I should be looking at while I'm researching this?

    Does anyone have personal experiences (good or bad) about their replacement tank to help me form an opinion? I am curious about things like ground clearance issues, departure angles, also.

    Thanks, [​IMG]

    -Greg72
     
  2. Steve_Chin

    Steve_Chin 1/2 ton status

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    Greg, my buddy has an NWMP 37 gallon tank and I have a 40 galon tank (presumably Aero). The 37 gallon tank has a little more taper to it at the rear than the 40 gallon tank. It doesn't look like the 37 gallon tank is going to really hurt departure angles on a stock height Blazer. Likewise, with the lift you have on yours, I don't think the 40 gallon tank would hurt your departure angle. Actually, with my Blazer at stock ride height, I hit my rear bumper and hidden trailer hitch... I don't hit the tank.

    BTW - I'm also putting serious thought into doing a shackle flip. Let me know how yours goes. Are you going to do the 2" or 4" flip?
     
  3. Ryan B.

    Ryan B. 3/4 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    Greg-
    I installed the NWMP 37 gal. Tank and I like it!
    First off, no matter what tank you buy, inspect it good upon delivery, because mine was dented in 2 spots and scratched all to hell. Probally UPS's fault. Don't accept it until you look it over. (wish i did that) Maybe request for packaging wherever you buy the tank. I'm a little bit anal about that because if I was trying to build a "show truck" how the heck can you do it with a dent right smack in the middle of where it really shows! It was too much of a hassle to return it and get a new one, so I just dealt with it. Besides the first few big rocks you drive over might leave the same dent. (and it's far from a show truck.)
    As for the scratches, I spray painted the tank really good over a few days and several coats of universal black.

    It came with some instructions that were just OK. I could try to find them and scan em for you, if you want.
    The straps that hold the gas tank there bolted up to holes that were already in the frame.
    The only thing that I don't like is that those straps have a space of about 1/4" or more between the middle of the tank and straps. The straps are kind of bow-ed... I've been meaning to pull out those straps and re-bend them myself, to fix the problem, but haven't gotten around to it.
    If you take some extra time and care to really make sure this won't happen the first time you install it, you'll be good.
    The only other thing that I noticed was that the tank was rubbing a little on the rear crossmember, and squeeking, so I got some 1/4" rubber sheet at OSH and cut it into strips to sandwich where it was rubbing and prevent the squeeking.

    Other than that, the installation was really simple, I told the dude at NWMP I might want to upgrade to fuel injection, so he sent me all the high pressure hoses at no extra cost.
    The kit included the sending unit, gasket, hoses, and all hardware.
    I wouldn't be too concerned about the ground clearance and departure angles. It doesn't seem that bad but it's a bit lower than the stock tank I'll bet.
    You've checked out my pics of the install, right?<a target="_blank" href=http://communities.msn.com/Ryans1972Blazer/picsofryansblazer.msnw?action=ShowPhoto&amp;PhotoID=58>http://communities.msn.com/Ryans1972Blazer/picsofryansblazer.msnw?action=ShowPhoto&amp;PhotoID=58</a>
    Go for it man!
    Ryan B
     
  4. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Steve,

    I was thinking about doing a 4" flip in the rear. I already have 4" blocks, so the "net" lift won't change and I can still use a "stock" spring for a softer ride.

    I am planning on calling ORD this week just to doublecheck my ideas and place the order. I'm fairly consistent about taking pics of the stuff I do....so I'm sure there will be progress photos in my Webshots gallery! [​IMG]

    -Greg72
     
  5. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Ryan,

    Yes I remember seeing the pics in your album....(I study your photos a lot for ideas!) I got confused though because I think there was a shot of the "Old and New" tanks side-by-side and they looked the same....so I didn't know what was going on.

    Glad you like the NWMP unit. That's kind of what I was leaning towards....37 gallons is going to be a dramatic change from the 17 or so gallons I can hold now!!!!

    Later,

    -Greg72
     
  6. Steve_Chin

    Steve_Chin 1/2 ton status

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    Greg, another note on my 40 gallon tank is that the front end of the tank is noticeably closer to the differential than the NWMP 37 gallon tank. Probably about 1.5" closer. There's still room for my TA Products differential girdle/cover, but it's closer under my Blazer than under my buddy's Blazer. There's a pic of my diff. cover that shows part of the tank at my web site:

    <a target="_blank" href=http://www.geocities.com/MotorCity/Downs/1963/BlazerPix.html>http://www.geocities.com/MotorCity/Downs/1963/BlazerPix.html</a>
     
  7. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Steve,

    Ryan B mentioned that same concern on his NWMP tank....I was hoping that since I have a 2" body lift, I might be able to "fudge" the tank UP a little, and maybe back towards the rear bumper too? Now that I know there's a potential interference with either brand of tank, I will have to spend some time thinking about getting more creative......not just a "bolt-in" project anymore! [​IMG]

    -Greg72
     
  8. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Well....I went with the NWMP 37 Gallon tank......ordered it a little while ago! Yikes I thought the most expensive part was going to be paying to fill it up with gas!!!! [​IMG] It's going to be around $420 delivered! Ouch.....

    I decided to pay the "extra" $10 for special packaging so hopefully it will arrive in good shape. I'll keep everyone informed with postings and photos if you guys are interested in seeing the install.

    -Greg72
     
  9. Ryan B.

    Ryan B. 3/4 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    Congrat's dude. That tank seems like the way to go. 1 expensive a$$ tank, but I'd say it's worth it. No more worrying about gas pouring out the top when in off camber situations!
    Thats a good deal you paid only $10 extra for packaging... I wish I did that. I could hear my gas tank get DROPPED when UPS pulled up out front. Thats probally when it got the dent.

    Make sure you almost run out of gas before you drop out your old tank... It makes it a lot easier.

    Keep us posted how it turns out.
     
  10. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Ryan....

    almost empty? I thought if I topped it off first, it would help it to DROP OUT a lot faster!!!! [​IMG]

    An electric fuel pump would be helpful about now.....I could empty the tank the easy way!

    Looks like the shackle flip kit is on about a 2-week backorder anyway, so I should have plenty of time to burn through whatever gas is left in my tank.

    -Greg72
     
  11. Steve_Chin

    Steve_Chin 1/2 ton status

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    Greg, there is a kick-out at the back end of the Aero and NWMP tank that goes under the rear-most frame crossmember and extends almost back to the bumper. You can't really fudge it up without cutting out the crossmember and relocating it. You can't fudge it back at all. The tanks also have flanges on their sides that would need to be relocated if you want to lift the tank up.
     
  12. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    DOH! (In my best Homer Simpson voice! [​IMG])

    Well, we'll see what I end up with when it gets here..... too late now! I'm going to have to make it work one way or another....

    -Greg72
     
  13. Ryan B.

    Ryan B. 3/4 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    One thing I might add is get it figured out before you fill it up with gas. If you need to cut off the tabs on the side and relocate them an inch or two down so the tank can come an inch or two up... Then you'd also have to fabricate or modify new straps to hold the gas tank...
    But you can still weld on that tank until you put gas into it. Then no one will want to touch it. Know what I mean?
     
  14. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Ryan,

    YES I DO! A tank full of fumes is a lot like a tank full of anthrax.....not a lot of folks want to be around! [​IMG]

    You know I always heard a story about a guy who used to demonstrate that it's not the fuel, but the fumes that are explosive. He used to flick a lit cigarette into a container of gas....as long as the cigarette went QUICKLY into the liquid it wouldn't ignite it. I always wonder what ever happened to that guy? [​IMG]


    -Greg72
     
  15. 1Blazin71

    1Blazin71 1/2 ton status

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    I've seen a professional mechanic friend of mine weld and solder (using a propane torch) on gas tanks that had been run down to almost empty, that is full of fumes. It was scary the first time I saw it!

    What he did was connect the filler neck on the dropped tanks to the exhaust of a running truck nearby, causing all of the oxygen &amp; fumes in the tank to be displaced by the carbon-monoxide from the exhaust. Pretty neat...but still not something I'd want to try myself.

    Matthew Meyer
    matthewm@inhollywood.com
    '71 Ochre K5 - 4" Lift 35"s
    ZZ4 350 - 700R
     
  16. 69K5

    69K5 1/2 ton status

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    I have the 37 gallon tank on my 69. I couldnt tell you about departure angles because there arent any rocks in louisiana. Mine fits good and i put some angle iron down my frame to fit the hitch i took off of my Z-71 before i sold it. The hidden hitch protects it because it stuck down a little and i was concerned about getting rear ended. so i dont think that you would have a problem from rocks and such.
     
  17. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    69K5,

    Thanks for the info....the tank was delivered by UPS yesterday. It looks like there are two little mounting "ears" on the sides that are used to hold the tank against the frame as you tighten the mounting straps....it seems like an easy job to have those cut off and re-welded 2" lower to allow for the 2" body lift I've got....

    Also I noticed that the "notch" in the tank is there to avoid hitting the rearmost frame crossmember near the rear bumper. I am not sure yet about relocating that crossmember back an inch or two, but that would give me some extra clearance for the 14BFF axle, which is my primary concern.

    We'll see.....[​IMG]

    -Greg72

    '72 K5 Blazer - 427BB/TH350/NP205/6" Lift/35x12.50's
    <font color=blue>See it here: </font color=blue><a target="_blank" href=http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38>http://coloradok5.com/gallery/albun38</a>
     
  18. Steve_Chin

    Steve_Chin 1/2 ton status

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    I've seen that same trick employed, Blazin71. It works well because the CO and CO2 in the exhaust won't support combustion. I don't think I'd do it that way myself. I was thinking that I would simply fill my tank all the way up with water before welding on it (it needs a set of "ears" put on it).
     

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