Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Out of gas...again?! (with Product Placement!)

This time it wasn't me. A few days back, as I was walking over to the car, I smelled gas. One quick look under it showed me a steady petroleum rain falling to the gravel and sand under the car.

Well, hell. If it had waited another 6 days, it would have happened on the June 3 anniversary of the leaky fuel tank. I threw a catch-pan under there and took the Tracker to work.

When I finally got a look at it, I found that last year's patch had peeled away from the repair site just enough to drain the tank again.

Here's the product placement part. The peeled patch was part of a "Fuel Tank Repair Kit" available at any auto parts store. I didn't use the whole kit--just the epoxy putty that came with it. It held for nearly a year, and that's pretty good, minus the quarter-tank of gas soaked into the ground. I'll just leave their name out of this.

I broke the stuff loose, and that's when I noticed that there was a ring of undamaged J-B Weld that had surrounded the patch. This stuff was still rock-hard, weathered to a lighter gray (or maybe it was their J-B Kwik formula), and not going anywhere.

This time (just a few hours ago), I worked a mess of J-B Weld over the spot where the crappy patch used to be, popped a rivet into the hole (damn tiny hole, maybe 2mm across) and tightened it down, then worked the epoxy up over the rivet head. I'll give this one a year and see what happens.