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Thread: How do you remove 2 part fiberglass epoxy resin used as tank liner?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    St. Petersburg, FL
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    109

    How do you remove 2 part fiberglass epoxy resin used as tank liner?

    When I bought the bike you couldn't close the gas cap. I ground fiberglass epoxy resin out from under the fill lip of the tank so I'm sure that shinny stuff thats all coming loose now is fiberglass epoxy resin. Any thoughts on a chemical that eats up fiberglass and not harm a beautiful '48 tank?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Sarasota, Florida
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    6,211

    Re: How do you remove 2 part fiberglass epoxy resin used as tank liner?

    I think that's asking for a miracle. I don't know of anything that will dissolve cured/aged epoxy resin; but I'm only saying that because I have never tried. Off hand, I would try MEK, or Acetone, but those are potent solvents and will instantly ruin a paint job if they make contact. Perhaps you could chip off some samples and see if any solvents will dissolve the resin. Personally, I don't think you're going to find a solvent that will do an efficient job of thoroughly removing the old epoxy resin. If it was me, I would consider mechanically removing the resin that is in your way, and then use a tank sealer like Red Kote to isolate the junk that you can't get out.

  3. #3

    Re: How do you remove 2 part fiberglass epoxy resin used as tank liner?

    I had to remove Kreme from an Indian reserve tank so I made cocktail of Methanol, Acetone and Universal Thinners. I rode around for some time using just the main tank then finally drained the mixture. All I can say is I got most of it. This doesn't really help you sorry. Now I think twice before putting any coatings in tanks.

    Anyway, I wonder if Methanol would dissolve it? The reason I say this is because I ran a fiberglass tank for circuit racing in the 90's. The Methanol would slowly dissolve the resin so I'd flush with water at the conclusion of the last race. Once in a while I'd recoat the insides with more resin. Seemed to work and saved buying an expensive aluminum tank.

    Make of this what you will. Good luck, Hope it helps.

  4. #4

    Re: How do you remove 2 part fiberglass epoxy resin used as tank liner?

    It might be worth trying the dry ice trick they use to remove the sound deadning material on cars. Saw it on a classic car program , it just froze and you could hear it cracking. No damage to paint

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Sittinborne Kent U.K
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    Re: How do you remove 2 part fiberglass epoxy resin used as tank liner?

    This is becoming a big problem , I must admit because of the physical problems of getting to all areas within a metal tank I think the methanol and thinners route is the way , or even using ethanol , which is the component causing the problem in the first place, as for removing the offending article from a fibreglass tank, this even more difficult , many English motorcycles of the late 50's and 60's used these and because people have put ethanol based fuel in their old tanks how do you clean these out to accept 2 part liners?
    Last edited by Tankie; 01-13-2019 at 05:29 AM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    St. Petersburg, FL
    Posts
    109

    Re: How do you remove 2 part fiberglass epoxy resin used as tank liner?

    Thanks guys. I've developed plan of attack "A" as a combination of your suggestions. Buy some E85, 85%, ethenol fuel and put in the tank to help further separate the fiberglass liner. Then drain the E85 and replace with water and then put the wet tank into my bait freezer to freeze the water after it seeps into the cracks. The expanding water to ice should help with the separation from the tank. Do this a few cycles until separation progress stops and then try to mechanically clean up the inside and then apply red kote liner. Any and all thoughts are appreciated. I'll post a report after plan A is executed.
    Thanks to all!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Sittinborne Kent U.K
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    77

    Re: How do you remove 2 part fiberglass epoxy resin used as tank liner?

    sounds like a plan

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    West Los Angeles So. Cal.
    Posts
    56

    Re: How do you remove 2 part fiberglass epoxy resin used as tank liner?

    You may not believe this or you may get a laugh but, it's worked perfectly for me on three sets of tanks with NO damage to paint. Two handful of wood screws and put the cap back on and plug the petcock hole. Wrap in moving blankets and put into dryer. Fill all voids with blankets so tank is in middle of dryer and has no room to bounce. Turn dryer to air dry (NO HEAT). Depending on the shape of the epoxy, it has taken between 1 1/2 to 4 hours of spinning. Usualy I'll do one cycle of about 45 mins. dump screws and waste, reinsert screws and repeat. Use a dentist mirror and flashlight to see how much more is needed. Good luck J.T.

  9. #9

    Re: How do you remove 2 part fiberglass epoxy resin used as tank liner?

    I suppose there's a chance that what you're seeing is Caswell's tank sealer, it's a two part epoxy that looks and acts like fiberglass.. I had Caswell's in one of my tanks and it started to fail, I phoned them and they advised that paint stripper with Methylene Chloride will remove their sealer, it was a gooey mess but it worked.
    1946 Chief - take apart and put back together
    101 Scout - building stage

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    St. Petersburg, FL
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    109

    Re: How do you remove 2 part fiberglass epoxy resin used as tank liner?

    I really appreciate the last 2 post. I will hack at this liner until successful and then post the results. Any additional thoughts are greatly appreciated. The most common response I've gotten is "ditch the tank". I may destroy the tank trying but, NO!

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