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Old 07-11-2008, 09:31 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Smaller Fuel Tank

Anyone thought about, or actually tried installing a different gas tank(smaller)?

Looking at my tank (10 gallons), if 1 gallon of gasoline equals 5.8 to 6.5 lbs. than my gas tank has anywhere from 58 to 65 lbs of "dead" weight. This doesn't even include the weight of the tank (no idea what to estimate). If I were to install a small 3 gallon tank (which would give me at least 150 mile range which is plenty), I could reduce another 41 to 46 lbs at the max in fuel, and I'd be operating most of the time at a lower weigt because it isn't always full.

I have done this on several demolition derby cars, rules state you must have a certain sized tank installed in the middle of the vehicle inside the cabin.

I think there are several benefits to this.

1) Reduced weight, could be upwards of 50-100 lbs depending on the weight of the tank.

2) Better gas gauge. I know for sure my gas gauge is completely jacked. It "works" properly, but the gauge isn't even evenly spaces. I don't run my tank as low as I can because I am just not sure when I get to the lower levels what i am really at. I could install a nicer gauge along with a visual look at the tank.

3) If I could build my own, I could design it maybe it a taller shape so that I could get a precise fillup each time. That way Ican always fill it to the same level no matter what grad surface I am on.

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Old 07-11-2008, 09:48 AM   #2 (permalink)
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If you never have to go on long trips it may be worth it. How much does a fuel cell cost though? If I recall right, they aren't cheap.
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Old 07-11-2008, 10:51 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Fuel cells start at about $90 for "race" cells. they do not have all the provisions for emmisions, so if you want to keep that in place, either price goes up or you have to do mods. Your tank is either thin steel or plastic, and won't weigh more than 5-10 lbs. you won't be saving much weight by going smaller. You will also have to deal w/ AN fittings: either swaping all your fuel lines to braided hose or getting an adapter to connect rubber to AN fitting (that will be $5+ for each line). Also you will need to buy/fab mounting brackets for the fuel cell ($25+), buy/fab a filler neck ($50-100), a sender ($30+), a fuel gage ($40+ for a nice one), etc.

I think you should just fill the tank half way if you want to save weight.
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Old 07-11-2008, 11:09 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Fill it halfway and I cannot figure out fuel efficiency.

I think your cost a a little off. I can take a lot of parts on the car and move them. I think rading a junk yard could provide a lot of parts. All the mounting can be done with scrap metal I can fab. If I can find an old "race" cell someone is throwing out or selling cheap, that makes it perfect. I'm thinking too nab all new parts, I really think looking for used parts could yeild a cheap upgrade.

I def never use this car for long trips.. I took out all the seats but the drivers seat. If I need to fill up a few time no big deal for a once in a year trip.
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Old 07-11-2008, 11:31 AM   #5 (permalink)
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As I joked on another thread, just carry the fuel you need for each day's use. IOW if you get 30 mpg and drive 50 miles, put in 2 gallons that morning.

Having said that, I've heard electric fuel pump life (which are the norm for fuel injected cars) is sensitive to heat which increases when the fuel level is low because the fuel is a heat sink / cooling medium for the pump.
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Old 07-11-2008, 02:09 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steensn View Post
Fill it halfway and I cannot figure out fuel efficiency.

I think your cost a a little off. I can take a lot of parts on the car and move them. I think rading a junk yard could provide a lot of parts. All the mounting can be done with scrap metal I can fab. If I can find an old "race" cell someone is throwing out or selling cheap, that makes it perfect. I'm thinking too nab all new parts, I really think looking for used parts could yeild a cheap upgrade.

I def never use this car for long trips.. I took out all the seats but the drivers seat. If I need to fill up a few time no big deal for a once in a year trip.
Your 1996 Aspire should be compatile with a scangauge. It would be money much better spent and you would getter a better FE increase then removing 50 pounds.

I've tried running 4 gallons in a 16 gallon tank with on noticeable increase in FE on the scan gauge.

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