7.7.46 & 53 Tank leak found and z-brackets prepared

I was very anxious walking up to the workshop today. Does the left tank leak like the right tank does or not?

I took a really good look around the tank and especially inside the BNC connector. Great news, no leak yay!!!

So, using my drill pump, I drained the tank of all water and set it aside upside down to dry.

Next, I carefully read and reread the instructions for closing the tanks in every detail. The instructions give a good overview but it definitely pays to read ahead. For example it says to check the z-brackets have nutplates attached but doesn’t say that they have to be debured and scuffed for a good bond. This is not what you want to be doing during the 2 hour sealant workability window! Currently the z-brackets look like this.

That’s no good for final fitting But after a quick wipe with MEK, debur both sides of the top flange and a scuff with maroon scotchbrite they now look like this.

Much better for fitting. Also the instructions go on to say that I may need to adjust the rivet puller tool so I thought I would check now. Again I don’t want to be doing this once the sealant is laid. Yep, it definitely needs grinding down to fit in the small gap.

Once ground I thought I would test it. I really don’t want anything to surprise me while I’m closing the tank. Good job I did test it as it didn’t work!!! After some head scratching I took the tool apart and found the grip head mechanism inside the pulled had melted due to the heat of the grinding. Doh!!!

Luckily this is a cheap budget puller and amazon can deliver me a replacement next day. I’ll just swap the grip head when the replacement arrives.

Finally it was time to investigate the leak on the right tank. Remember that it was leaking through the BNC connector? I used my dentist mirror to very closely inspect the connector and sealant around it and I found this…

Look in the top left of the mirror and you can see the back side of the BNC plug is missing some sealant. Hopefully that’s it! So I mixed up 15g of sealant and very liberally applied it around the connector and wire. I also topped up the other connectors in the tank just in case.

Finally, a big tidy up again and that’s that for today. Now I’m off to research other builders logs for any tips on closing the fuel tanks.

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