Fuel gauge shenannigans

Fuel tanks, systems and parts
k2bords
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Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by k2bords » Thu Nov 29, 2012 22:38

So the 'new' tank's gauge leaks like a seive. I found this stuff, and for $6.45 I think it's a good tool investment. What do you guys think, worth it?
http://www.mikes-afordable.com/miva/mer ... _Code=1067
Good price seems on a gasket set too:
http://www.mikes-afordable.com/miva/mer ... _Code=1067
I bet I could write 'PMA' real careful on the cork....

Matt
Matt Machen
Lander, WY
1946 7AC
C-85 w/ O-200 guts

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hangerash
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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by hangerash » Fri Nov 30, 2012 10:07

Thanks for the links. Great find!
Richard

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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by k2bords » Thu Mar 06, 2014 12:02

So my header tank gauge is still not sealing up completely, with the tank full the gauge weeps pretty good. At least it's not pouring out of it like it was before. The gasket I've got between the indicator and the tank is a neoprene type. With the gasket and indicator installed I don't feel I can get the outer ring that holds it all in the hole tight enough before the threads let got (kinda feels like tightening a screw with a worn out tinnerman). I can thread the outer ring all the way down without the indicator and it feels good. Seems the first threads on the tank are wore out.

Has anyone here experienced this? Would a cork gasket work better? I'm thinking about just hole cutting a piece of thin aluminum sheet to plug the hole and tighten the ring down on that, or get a threaded plug if I could find just the right one. I don't use the gauge really (2 hrs and it's time to get gas!). Maybe replace the tank cap with a cub style vertical wire with float? Anybody ever build one of those? Wag wants $73 for one and I'm not sure if it'd even fit.
Matt Machen
Lander, WY
1946 7AC
C-85 w/ O-200 guts

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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by MikeB » Thu Mar 06, 2014 16:36

For whatever it's worth: I've cut gaskets out of regular gasket paper and sealed everything (including the threads) with 'Fuel Lube' which seems to work. Cork and Fuel Lube would probably work too but the cork takes a bit more room when the threads are 'iffy'. Someone on this site (might have been Dennis) had a thread chaser for the tanks manufactured.
Hope this helps!
Mike

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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by Dennis » Thu Mar 06, 2014 17:49

Hey MikeB, Yes, I was the one who had the thread chaser made. May be wrong, but I think JoeA copied it.

Dennis

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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by Champ Dreamer » Fri Mar 07, 2014 23:16

I bought a gauge assembly from Mike, excellent quality. Had to adjust the length of the wire, but it works great and does not leak. Get the wrench too.

Brian Walker
'46 7AC/DC flying daily

k2bords
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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by k2bords » Sun Mar 09, 2014 15:19

Hi Guys - What I've gone and done is plugged the hole with the gasket and a hole saw cut piece of aluminum sheet, holding it all in with the large retaining nut. This set up is not leaking, but I was also able to thread the retaining nut much further than with the gauge installed.

Brian - The gauge I've got was purchased from Mike's A-fordable parts. I agree, would work great if my threads weren't so screwed up! I also purchased the 2 piece tool set for working on the gauge. Very well worth it given how much monkeying I've had to do with this thing! Just for future reference, do you remember about how much you trimmed from the float arm? Did you need to do any bending of the arm?

Dennis or JoeA - Would the thread chaser help with repairing the wore out threads on my tank you think?
Matt Machen
Lander, WY
1946 7AC
C-85 w/ O-200 guts

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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by Dennis » Sun Mar 09, 2014 16:57

Matt,

The way I read your post, your threads are worn out, not bugger up. The thread chaser does a good job on buggered threads but I don't think it will help worn out threads. Having said that, you are welcome to try the thread chaser.

If the threads are indeed worn out and sealer will not hold and you have tried everything else, I would talk to a machine shop about boring out the present threads and installing an insert similar to the valve seat in a cylinder.

Dennis

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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by k2bords » Mon Mar 10, 2014 20:42

Dennis - You are correct. I have no problem threading the retaining nut all the way down when nothing is installed. I stopped short of putting fuel lube on everything when I put it back together the last time, I'll give that a shot. At least I know if I can get by without a gauge I can make it quit leaking.
Matt Machen
Lander, WY
1946 7AC
C-85 w/ O-200 guts

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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by hangerash » Tue Mar 11, 2014 05:43

Sorry Matt, 91.205(b) has the minimum items for VFR day.
A – airspeed indicator
T – tachometer (for each engine)
O – oil pressure gauge (for each engine using a pressure system)
M – manifold pressure gauge (for each altitude engine)
A – altimeter
T – temperature gauge (for each liquid cooled engine)
O – oil temperature gauge (for each air cooled engine)
F – fuel gauge
L – landing gear position indicator
A – anti collision lights (for aircraft certified after March 11th 1996)
M – magnetic compass
E – ELT
S – safety belts

While it doesn't have to be the gauge you have, some means of measuring the fuel quantity is required.
Richard

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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by MikeB » Tue Mar 11, 2014 15:01

I've always wondered if the fuel gauge couldn't be removed on the Chief auxiliary (8 gallon) tank and the hole plugged as they always seem to eventually seep and stain the headliner. Would really be no different than the wing tank with out a gauge that refills the nose tank. I have the gauge sealed on my Chief project right now but I suppose eventually............. :cry: .

Mike

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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by k2bords » Tue Mar 11, 2014 20:43

Haha, I knew someone would start throwing reg's around! Well, according to 91.205b(9) -

(9) Fuel gauge indicating the quantity of fuel in each tank.

Well then, how do we get away with the 5 gallon aux tanks in each wing not having an indicator? Does the FAA just consider it all one big tank? I know a fed would want to see a gauge installed, but I as well as everyone here knows that unless someone takes the time to set them up right they are worthless. Do we ground every airplane with an inaccurate gauge? According to the reg we would have to! Even with them working, a wristwatch and knowledge of your engine will be more accurate.

Honestly, this reg is frustrating for our little planes. All we really need in our Aeroncas is a light to go on when the oil pressure goes away. Okay, maybe oil temp too if you wanna get all technical.
Matt Machen
Lander, WY
1946 7AC
C-85 w/ O-200 guts

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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by Paul Agaliotis » Tue Mar 11, 2014 22:42

Matt,
Any tank that will deliver fuel to the engine needs a gauge. Most of the aux tanks will only transfer to a tank that has a gauge. The single gauge Citabrias, in stock form, supply fuel from both tanks and are not selectable.
Paul
Mailing Adress : Paul Agaliotis 2060 E. San Martin, San Martin,Calif. 95046

k2bords
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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by k2bords » Thu Mar 20, 2014 14:24

So then, would everyone agree that building a cub style 'wire with a bobber' type fuel cap would constitute a gauge and therefore make the plane legal in this regard?
Matt Machen
Lander, WY
1946 7AC
C-85 w/ O-200 guts

Paul Agaliotis
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Re: Fuel gauge shenannigans

Post by Paul Agaliotis » Thu Mar 20, 2014 15:25

Matt,
I've seen a lot of them installed that way.
Paul
Mailing Adress : Paul Agaliotis 2060 E. San Martin, San Martin,Calif. 95046

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