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  • Aluminum Diesel Fuel Tank ?

    Hey Guys; I have a diesel fuel tank comming Saturday Morn., it's got a 3/8" hole in the bottom.
    It's Empty !!!!!!

    Any suggestion on how to prep it so as Not to blow myself up ?
    A Boilermaker friend said to run a hose from the exhaust pipe of my truck into it for about 30 minutes before & during the small weld , patch job I'm going to weld on to it .

    ......... Norm
    www.normsmobilewelding.blogspot.com

  • #2
    Diesel fuel will not explode like gasoline will. If you want to, the exhaust trick does work for welding fuel tanks. In order for an explosion to take place oxygen must be present, using the hose from the tailpipe will fill the tank with carbon monoxide and displace the oxygen. If your truck happens to be a diesel though you might want to consider using the exhaust from the wife's car instead. I've welded more diesel tanks than I can remember over the past 38 years and have never used any carbon monoxide and never had any problems. Gasoline tanks are a different story!!
    Blondie (Owner C & S Automotive)

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Blondie_486 View Post
      Diesel fuel will not explode like gasoline will. If you want to, the exhaust trick does work for welding fuel tanks. In order for an explosion to take place oxygen must be present, using the hose from the tailpipe will fill the tank with carbon monoxide and displace the oxygen. If your truck happens to be a diesel though you might want to consider using the exhaust from the wife's car instead. I've welded more diesel tanks than I can remember over the past 38 years and have never used any carbon monoxide and never had any problems. Gasoline tanks are a different story!!
      Blondie, Thanks;

      So I shouldn't use a Diesel truck for the exhaust. Why ?

      I can use my truck, as it's gasoline.
      I'm glad to hear my life is safe doing it the way you suggest !

      ........ Norm
      www.normsmobilewelding.blogspot.com

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      • #4
        diesel produces very little carbon monoxide. i hate to weld any tanks but when i do i just go down to the local liquor store and get some dry ice and throw it in the tank and put the cap back on and wait 15-20 minutes pop the cap and chuck some more in and weld it. use a pair of pliers to handle the ice though because it will burn you even through a pair of welders gloves. my older brother used to weld tanks of all types using the dry ice. i punched a 2" hole about mid way down in the front of my left tank on my KW when i found a piece of steel some nice feller left in the road for me. i had about 60 gals diesel in that tank and was going to drain it so he could weld and he said leave it. he put about 2 pounds of dry ice in it, waited and put more in it and welded a patch over it.
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        • #5
          Well, It's all done, used my wife's car ran the exhaust for 20 minutes before & during the weld & patch.
          No problems at all !

          ............. Norm
          www.normsmobilewelding.blogspot.com

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          • #6
            As you have already been told and now experienced, diesel won't blow as will gasoline. However, be absolutely sure "bubba" has only had diesel in the tank!

            Griff

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            • #7
              Argon

              I did a tank from my nephew. I used Ar to purge and tigged it up. I should have put a patch over the hole, that would have been easier. The hole was about the size of a fifty cent piece.
              Good Luck,
              Bob
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              • #8
                Originally posted by jbmprods View Post
                i punched a 2" hole about mid way down in the front of my left tank on my KW when i found a piece of steel some nice feller left in the road for me. .
                I hate it when that happens. You are right, if there were Carbon Monoxide in diesel, we would all be dead.
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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Bob Miller View Post
                  I did a tank from my nephew. I used Ar to purge and tigged it up. I should have put a patch over the hole, that would have been easier. The hole was about the size of a fifty cent piece.
                  Good Luck,
                  Bob
                  Bob,I had some 1/4"x 5" Aluminum FB., so I cut a piece 2"x2" cleaned everything up real good. S.S. Wire brush & acetone , then welded her up, Nice !

                  ............ Norm
                  www.normsmobilewelding.blogspot.com

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                  • #10
                    Norm, That's what I should have done, instead of chasing the hole round and round.
                    I guess hind sight is always 20-20.
                    Good Luck,
                    Bob

                    Edit: Just wait till next time then I'll do it right.
                    Last edited by Bob Miller; 01-23-2011, 09:03 AM.
                    Millermatic 252 w/30A
                    Big Blue Air Pak
                    Ellis 3000 Band Saw
                    Trailblazer 302 Air Pak w/ Wireless Remote
                    8-RC
                    Dynasty 200 DX
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                    Millermatic 211
                    Passport Plus
                    Spectrum 625 X-TREME
                    Lincoln SA-200 Blue Tint Red Face '63
                    2-Lincoln SA-200 Red Face '68
                    SA-200 Black Face '59
                    SA-200 Green Lite '84
                    SA-200 Green Lite '80
                    SA-200 Red Face '69
                    SA-200 Red Face '66
                    SA-200 Green Lite '81
                    '70 Black Face Round Barrel

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                    • #11
                      It is a false collective belief that what you are filling the tank with is carbon monoxide. Any gasoline engine that is running normally and is fuel injected produces little to no CO. Check your emissions test report. If you want to make CO, you have to have the garage door closed, so that the available oxygen to the engine begins to deplete, and it is breathing in a large percentage of exhaust. It is poor, or incomplete combustion that produces CO. If you have a problem with your furnace, it is only when the O2 starts dropping that CO starts being produced. That is why you don't have to have a flue pipe on a gas stove. Think about it: all the stove burners and the oven are running, at +- 35,000 BTU, yet how often does the chef get CO poisoning? That is because the combustion is complete.
                      What you're filling the tank with when you use your exhaust is mostly atmosphere that has had the oxygen removed by the engine, and replaced by the product of the chemical reaction between the fuel and oxygen: carbon dioxide. At about 19% in a well tuned engine, it is about 100 times more concentrated than what naturally occurs in the atmosphere. The rest of the exhaust is mostly nitrogen, and small percentages of oxides of nitrogen and unburned hydrocarbons. If your engine has an occasional misfire, which you will smell, then there will be traces of oxygen, and carbon monoxide in the exhaust.
                      It is the lack of oxygen in the that makes this method work. I am glad to have the opportunity to this rant, even though I know full well that everybody is still going to say "hook up your exhaust and fill the tank with carbon monoxide".
                      Thanks for listening.

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                      • #12
                        Thanks for the info, very interesting. Putting exhaust fume in a fuel cell is basically filling it up with inert gas, we use CO2 at the shop for this type of job.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Bob Miller View Post
                          Norm, That's what I should have done, instead of chasing the hole round and round.
                          I guess hind sight is always 20-20.
                          Good Luck,
                          Bob

                          Edit: Just wait till next time then I'll do it right.
                          Bob; Yes, as with most if not all welding jobs the prep takes longer than the weld.
                          To weld the patch , was maybe 30 seconds . lol .

                          ............. Norm
                          www.normsmobilewelding.blogspot.com

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                          • #14
                            Thanks for making this post Norm, some very good information!

                            I have often wondered about the electric fuel pumps in our gas tanks, I would like to know what these fellows thinking is on this? The fuel pumps I have changed have had push on connectors on them, it just doesnt seem like a good idea having a possibility of a sparking connector in a gasoline tank. I am thinking that the vapor pressure keeps the o2 levels low enough in a closed system possibly??

                            I have used argon to purge a gasoline tank because I had it, I also like the dry ice but havent tried it.
                            mike sr

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                            • #15
                              Dry Ice - Cool Idea !

                              Originally posted by popspipes View Post
                              Thanks for making this post Norm, some very good information!

                              I have often wondered about the electric fuel pumps in our gas tanks, I would like to know what these fellows thinking is on this? The fuel pumps I have changed have had push on connectors on them, it just doesnt seem like a good idea having a possibility of a sparking connector in a gasoline tank. I am thinking that the vapor pressure keeps the o2 levels low enough in a closed system possibly??

                              I have used argon to purge a gasoline tank because I had it, I also like the dry ice but havent tried it.
                              Pops, Yep, It's been an interesting thread.
                              I've never tried nor heard of using dry ice before, Cool. Lol .
                              Pun intended !

                              .......... Norm
                              www.normsmobilewelding.blogspot.com

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