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Old 01-06-2013, 09:04 AM   #1
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Painting Fuel Tanks?

I found rust on the tops of my fuel tanks (GB32). In some areas more than half the thickness of the steel has rusted away, but no holes. I've scraped off all the rust I can, wire brushed the heck out of it, and I'm about to treat with Ospho.

Once treated what should I paint them with? Some yards say zinc oxide and any old paint, others say Rustoleum, yet others say epoxy.

What works best?
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Old 01-06-2013, 09:18 AM   #2
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Greetings,
POR15
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Old 01-06-2013, 09:59 AM   #3
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POR 15 is very good, follow the direction to a T. It is all the prep work. Getting any oils, grease out of steel. Then good venting of area. Make sure no more water enters from your engine air intakes and around your fuel filler pipe. Watch area where your tank beds on bottom side of tank. Moisture in wood supports can cause more rust.
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Old 01-06-2013, 10:06 AM   #4
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You might want to pressure test them before you go to all the trouble of painting them. If they have developed pin hole leaks you will never fix it with paint. If you do paint post up some pictures. Good luck
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Old 01-06-2013, 11:18 AM   #5
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Greetings,
You can even work with pin hole leaks with the POR15.
POWERMESH-POR-15 Inc.
I have NO vested interest in any way with the company or it's dealers etc. Just that I've seen a few of the products used on several occasions and it appears to be a very good product that might provide an easy and lasting fix.
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Old 01-06-2013, 04:34 PM   #6
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Check out ZRC Galvilite if you really want to protect the outside of your steel tanks.
ZRC makes coatings typically used to protect bridges and other large structures. Galvilite contains an amazing density of zinc and goes on thick, so it really is like putting a galvanizing layer on the surface. Totally different to those spray cans from HD.
I have used this stuff where pumps and other items are regularly exposed to seawater. It stands up to the challenge.
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Old 01-10-2013, 05:44 PM   #7
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Just be sure that no more water gets on the tank or the painting will be for naught shortly
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Old 01-10-2013, 05:49 PM   #8
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While I agree totally with C lectric, be aware that the ZRC paint is intended for situations where there is exposure to water. Obviously, the less the better!!!!
As you can probably tell, I highly recommend this coating - but have no commercial interest in it!!
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Old 01-10-2013, 08:18 PM   #9
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If you can get good preperation done then I would reccomend a good coating of tar Epoxy after the required base coat.

I did my new steel tanks over 17 years ago and they are still in U Beaut condition.
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Old 01-10-2013, 09:46 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chrisjs View Post
... be aware that the ZRC paint is intended for situations where there is exposure to water...
Should definitely suit tanks on older Island Gypsy boats with teak decks. One of my tanks had a hole in the top near the filler, now treated and repaired (tank & deck).
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Old 01-10-2013, 10:01 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sherwood View Post

Once treated what should I paint them with? Some yards say zinc oxide and any old paint, others say Rustoleum, yet others say epoxy.

What works best?
Something that matches the decor of the engine room.

We chose light grey "Bilgecoat".
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Old 01-16-2013, 07:51 AM   #12
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May I ask were your leak was. I have a 36 IG and found a small leak above the port forward tank. Just enough water came down to do a bit of surface rust. Taking the tanks Port/Starboard out and rework them. Sending units and the likes.
Peter
Grand haven, MI
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