How to: Tank Rust Removal (Pic Heavy!) - Suzuki SV650 Forum: SV650, SV1000, Gladius Forums
 
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Old 02-28-2012, 11:09 PM   #1
Domiken
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How to: Tank Rust Removal (Pic Heavy!)

Hey guys, so a few weeks back I purchased my girlfriends 05' Ninja 250 which was mint, had 1600 miles on it
and not a single scratch. The previous owner informed me that the bike was sitting for many years and that
the only draw back to the almost new condition motorcycle was a rusty tank and some dirty carbs. I personally
don't like messing with carbs so I had my mechanic clean them and tune it up (fresh fluids etc.) The bike idled
perfectly and ran fine. I knew the tank rust thing was a big issue but I was too busy bouncing off the rev
limiter and grinning like the first time I rode a two wheeled vehicle.



After teaching my girlfriend how to ride for the second weekend, while heading home, the bike began sputtering
and losing power while we were in the middle of the Manhattan Bridge! I quickly pulled over and saw all the
rust flakes in the clear fuel filter...oh crap. So I flicked the fuel line and filter several times and fuel
started flowing again and the bike started up, but very rough. We eventually made it back after breaking down
a few times.



And then the conquest began. After reading about electrolysis, Kreem, POR-15, Evapo Rust, Vinegar, Bathroom
Toilet Bowl cleaner and a whole bunch of other homemade cocktails it was clear to me that due to the limited
space available in NYC and being indoors during winter, I had to keep things simple. NO ONE on the net had a
HOW TO on this, just simple information and a good luck comments. So the conquest began to do this right the
FIRST time and not have to worry about it again. I also wanted to help others in the community so I documented
the process.

I chose to go with the below:
1. EVAPO RUST (1.5 gallons) - $40
2. Two pieces of a 6 inch steel chain -$2
3. POR-15 Gas Tank Repair Kit - $50
4. My roommates beach bucket - Free
5. Old undershirt - Free
6. Painters tape - Free (I had it laying around)
7. Dishwashing gloves - $2
8. Duct Tape - Free (Had some left)
9. Cling Wrap - Free (found in cupboard)
10. Funnel - $2
11. Red Gasoline jug - Free (owned it)
12. Toilet Bowl flapper - $4
13. Hair dryer - Free - I somehow had one (GF)

Total Cost: $100

Why did I go with EVAPO RUST & POR-15? Because I wanted to try them both out and going the extra mile only hurts
my wallet, but I know its done right which in the end is piece of mind.

So to begin, I took the tank off the bike, emptied the remaining gas into the bucket and began taking the petcock off.



You can clearly see the rust flakes in the fuel filter



Now let's look inside the tank


The pictures dont do it justice





So I bought this toilet bowl flapper to seal the gas tank hole, but it was not perfect, not snug enough to hold
the gas from falling out, definitely buy a bathroom tub rubber nub instead




Now time to tape everything up




Taped up the tank so I dont scratch it


All the EVAPO RUST available in the NYC area


Time to start pouring



Dropping the chains in so I can shake the rust off the tank walls


Finished taping


Now its time to shake it like a polaroid picture! (For 20 minutes anyway)


Drink my roommates beer


I then left the tank for about 3 hours on each side, and then overnight on the top side.
I went to work the next morning and left it on the bottom side, then when I
came back that evening, I decided to empty it out.



I used an old undershirt as a filter, because I wanted to pour the EVAPO RUST back in the tank
in case it didnt do its job.



Look at how disgusting that bucket is! After rinsing with water, all that rusty crap particles
came out.



Not bad looking in there, but the flast rust happens very quickly


The EVAPO RUST that pooled on top of the gas tank hole, ate the paint on the inside part, which
I eventually painted over with the POR-15 tank coverage stuff (which matched), but thats later.


Looking much better in there, all the rust was gone, but some parts looked green in there (which is ok)

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Old 02-28-2012, 11:09 PM   #2
Domiken
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Re: How to: Tank Rust Removal (Pic Heavy!)

Now to prevent rust from ever happening again in the future, I went with this:


It was purchased from www.advanced-rust-protection.com in Great Barrington, MA, shipping was only $5 where
the POR 15 folks want a lot more. I also called to pay for extra shipping, but the nice gentleman informed
me that if shipping in the try state area and ordering early, you will receive it the NEXT DAY, which I did.

The total was a whopping $47.50 with shipping (I rounded on top)

And this is what you get, Marine Clean to clean all the crap, Prep and ready to get rid of rust and prepare
the tank for the fuel tank sealer, and final part, the fuel tank sealer.


I had some cling wrap, just in case the liquids were to harm the paint, and some gloves for my hands (no eye protection)


All ready



Marine Clean time


So the whole time I was all cocky, thinking the EVAPO RUST took care of everything. I mean I flushed EVERY particle
out of the tank with water after the EVAPO RUST... or so I thought.

I mixed the Marine Clean with 1:1 with hot water (not boiling, but hot) and shook for 20 minutes. Eventually the ductape
on the petcock gave out, because as the instructions stated, to activate the marine clean the water must be warm, not hot
or the duct tape stickiness might come off... and it did. But the petcock hole was so small that I barely lost any liquid.
Once I started losing liquid, this crap came out:


All types of particles, black crap, rust pieces, etc... things I thought the EVAPO RUST took care of.


I then flushed with water and got even more crap out until nothing else came out.


So once again, I taped the tank all over and used cling wrap


Time for Prep and Ready


Prep and Ready should not be in the tank for more than 2 hours, so I laid the tank on each side for 30 minutes
and I also shook it for 10 minutes a couple of times.


I then poured out the liquids and flushed with water and VOILA!






This time around, barely any particles came out, I flushed it a million times to make sure nothing was left in there.

Now to prevent flast rust, and before pouring in the last step which is the tank sealer, the tank must
be 100% dry, or the tank sealer will not work properly. So I made sure I emptied as much water as I could from
the tank and went to town with the hair dryer.


Now just to be safe (and dont hate me tree huggers) I brought the tank in my room at night so it stays dry and
left it to dry the next day in my room with the heat on to ensure there is no moisture in there. After checking
the tank again, and blowing more hot air in there, the tank was ready for the sealer.



The small little jug worried me when I saw it, I thought it was quite small. The consistency is watery and not thick,
like pouring orange juice with metal particles in your tank:


I put my gloves on and carefully poured this stuff in the tank. I moved the tank in every direction possible,
using slow movements, and pretending I can see the liquid coating the inside. I did this for about 40 minutes
to ensure I was going to get every nook and cranny. Afterwards, I poured the remaining contents back into the
little can and I had more than 1/4 of the can filled and the inside of the tank was completely coated. It took
me about 30 minutes to fully get everything out, but once I did it was a great feeling. I then used the brush
they included to coat the surrounding area around my gas tank hole, and the paint matched perfectly.


Here is the tank, left to dry:


Now I am one to rush things, but this time around I will be leaving the sealer to dry and cure for the recommended
96 hours. This is the tank after 72 hours, tomorrow I will be installing it.




Looks brand new doesn't it:


Hope this all helps you guys with the rusty tank problems and anyone else out there on the web,
if you have any questions feel free to reach out.

Cheers,
Kevin
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Old 02-28-2012, 11:24 PM   #3
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Re: How to: Tank Rust Removal (Pic Heavy!)

This should be in the general maintenance section, sorry guys late post.
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Old 02-28-2012, 11:37 PM   #4
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Re: How to: Tank Rust Removal (Pic Heavy!)

Nice Spinergy's er.. um.. nice write up.
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Old 02-29-2012, 12:12 PM   #5
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Re: How to: Tank Rust Removal (Pic Heavy!)

Good job Domiken! Maybe mods can sticky this under general maintenance?
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Old 02-29-2012, 08:48 PM   #6
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Re: How to: Tank Rust Removal (Pic Heavy!)

I intentionally add rust with every fill up. Builds engine character.

Solid post. Is that cling wrap particularly effective? Just curious.

EDIT: And by the way, is filling your tank full and adding stabilizer when you're storing for winter a solid way to deter rustage?
I made that word up.

Last edited by Bravetoaster; 03-01-2012 at 02:55 PM.
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Old 02-29-2012, 11:04 PM   #7
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Re: How to: Tank Rust Removal (Pic Heavy!)

Nice post Dom. It will surely be helpful to others. Rusted gas tanks are pretty common.
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Old 03-01-2012, 10:21 PM   #8
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Re: How to: Tank Rust Removal (Pic Heavy!)

Very informative.

Can I ask, why did you choose the sealant product you used over the others you considered? I've only heard of Kreem, and wonder what you think the pros and cons are to each.

Also, you probably realize this now, but you should have cleaned the carbs AFTER you cleaned and treated the tank. The gasoline acted as a solvent, loosening and floating all of that rust and such through the carbs you just had cleaned.
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Old 03-01-2012, 11:20 PM   #9
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Re: How to: Tank Rust Removal (Pic Heavy!)

Kreem will crack and break loose if you dent the tank. Then you are screwed because you can not apply Kreem a second time.
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Old 03-01-2012, 11:28 PM   #10
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Re: How to: Tank Rust Removal (Pic Heavy!)

The POR-15 is time consuming, however good things come to those who wait! I used that kit on a tank that sat with some fuel in it for TWENTY ONE years!! I think I still smell like that tar 8 months later. It did a flawless job and saved a cosmetically perfect 40 year old tank from the scrap heap. The instructions cover it but make sure you plug any threaded holes or vent tubes, the paint dries rock hard.
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