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Extra gastank for rig question
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Huey
Posted 11/7/2004 12:16 PM (#5256)
Subject: Extra gastank for rig question



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Posts: 105
100
Location: Arlington, Texas
Has anyone had direct experience with installing an extra gas tank into a side car to use on the rig? I would think this could be easily done, but would require an electric fuel pump and placement considerations as to location and venting. The tank does not have to be large and could even be adapted to sit somewhere between the sidecar and motorcycle as well, I suppose.

I fully plan on adding a Ural sidecar to a Kawasaki Drifter 800 in the future and am at least toying about with presently the idea of a secondary fuel tank as well. Just an idea to banter about and may never actually happen. I like to be informed any rate before I act on such matters and placement, feasibility and what works and what does not are issues to think about first.

I have an antique car and many, many street rods use extra fuel tanks as this all the time, so I am thinking that it has to have been done by someone with a sidecar in the past as well. Many Ural ridders simply add a gas can that can be removed and used to fill their machines, but I am thinking of an actual mounted tank instead. Not like the mounts for the Jerry can on a Ural, but an actual fuel tank instead.

Any thoughts or ideas? Anyone done this and have some direct know how to add such as what sort of tank to use, who much an extra tank holds or even weighs, where to mount, etc.?
Thanks,
Huey

Edited by Huey 11/7/2004 12:20 PM
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Jimbosidecar
Posted 11/9/2004 5:49 AM (#5268 - in reply to #5256)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question



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Posts: 57
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Location: Beijing, China
Hi,
There is really a genius that attended the ISOK rally in PA this past summer. He has a "Beemaru" (Sube powered BMW rig) and he had an auxillary fuel tank that was very well integrated into his rig. Problem is I forgot the gent's name. I'm sure someone on this board knows who I'm talking about.
For me it's never a problem as my rear gives out about 5 miles before my tank runs dry!
Regds,
Jim
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claude #3563
Posted 11/9/2004 6:48 AM (#5269 - in reply to #5268)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question



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Location: Middleburg, Pa
The 'genius' is Harry Tarzian of H.T. Wheels. Harry is a good friend or sidecarring and a master machinist. He can be reached at (814) 349-2414.
As far as auxillary fuel tanks go there are many options.
Many are rigged to simply 'refuel' the main tank when it gets low. This is a fairly simple system consisting of the extra tank(s) some fittings. fuel line, a shut off valve or a one way valve of some kind, a vent and typically an electric fuel pump. Fuel lines should be run in a safe manner of course. It is also a good idea to wire the pump into a switch that will shut off the pump in a tip over. Many bikes have such switches on them already. Direct wiring from a battery to a switch to the pump is often done but in the event of a crash the pump will continue pumping. Not a good scenario if a fuel line is ripped loose.
Tanks are many times custom made although the options of ready made fuel cells are often preferred. JAZ Products offers many sizes and shapes of fuel cells in many variations (foam or no foam is one option..another is a sending unit for a fuel gage, etc.). Go to google.com or any search engine and type in 'fuel cells' or JAZ.
For a nice custom tank many build from aluminum. A buisness that builds tanks for boats is a good place to check this out.
Some have adopted recycled beer kegs for a tank. There are also the spun aluminum drag car tanks that can be had at a decent price and look great mounted outside the sidecar.
SAFTEY IS, AGAIN A CONCERN. IF THE TANK IS INSIDE THE SIDECAR IT MUST BE VENTED TO THE OUTSIDE AIR!
Many folks do mount them in behind the sidecar seat.
At this time our rig has a cargo box body on it (see picture at left) with two extra fuel tanks of 5 gallons each. These are recycled 5 gallon fuel cells from a mini-sprint race car. Thye are basically storage units and not plumbed into the fuel system at this time.
Some have mounted tanks below the sidecar. Not a bad place but the addition of a skidpad may be a wise move.
Weight wise? The weight of gas is, I think, around 8 pounds per gallon. This weight can be the most beneficial if it is mounted to the rear and to the outside corner area of the sidecar. It IS NOT good to hang a lot of weight in front of the sidecar wheel especially on lighter rigs.
Some sidecar manufacturers do offer an auxillary fuel tank as an option. Motorvation is one. Check out their websites.
Hope this helps a little..above all, BE SAFE!



Edited by claude #3563 11/9/2004 6:59 AM
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Hack'n
Posted 11/9/2004 12:27 PM (#5271 - in reply to #5256)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question



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Location: Boise, Idaho
Summit Racing has a variety of aluminum fuel cells ranging from 3 gallons up and also the necessary fittings. summitracing.com.
Todays gas will weigh 6# to 7# per gallon depending on the temperature.
(That's why you dont want to fill your tank in the heat of the day. or fill up and park in the sun for any length of time).
The expansion rate is one reason you need good venting outside of the vehicle. Even with good venting there is a danger of fire from overfilling a reserve tank if fuel is on the ground. Racers don't have this problem since they use their fuel immediately instead of storing it for later use.
Placement to the rear and low works well. My passengers used to smell gas fumes with the jerry can placement of the URALs.
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claude #3563
Posted 11/9/2004 3:25 PM (#5276 - in reply to #5271)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question



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Location: Middleburg, Pa
These should be 'live' links , just click on them:

http://www.summitracing.com/

http://www.jazproducts.com/

Claude
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SCT100
Posted 12/10/2004 7:20 PM (#5607 - in reply to #5256)
Subject: RE: Extra gas tank for rig question


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Posts: 117
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Location: In the rust belt somewhere
An extra gas tank can be a problem. Not a problem with the tank itself, but a delivery problem. I am having a custom built aluminum fuel cell fabricated to fit my Spyder. It will have an internal bladder and a Monza style filler. The rub is the delivery. Most carbureted engines are gravity fed by the tank above the mixers. The fuel pump that supplies fuel from the auxiliary tank can't deliver much more than 2 psi to the float bowls or the needle valves will not overcome the fuel pressure and the float bowls will overflow.

Fuel injected engines will tolerate much higher delivery pressure, however.

Another problem is the fact that the auxiliary system needs to be quick disconnected from the bike and that may be done with quick disconnect fuel fittings available from any supplier that handles professional racing equipment.

If your bike has a fuel gage, you can simply activate the pump and monitor the gage until the main tank is full, however, in my case, I have no gage so the auxiliary fuel system will have to run the bike in actuality. That can be accomplished by the above method and also a set of one way in-line check valves in the main fuel line as well as the auxiliary line to prevent back flow of fuel in either mode, main tank or remote tank.

I know, you are confused now.
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normpottruff
Posted 12/11/2004 12:24 AM (#5614 - in reply to #5256)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question


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Posts: 35
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Location: Regina Sask. Canada
Good Day,
On carbureted bikes that already use a fuel pump such as GL1100/1200 or KTM I usually just T into the main fuel line and control which tank is feeding by using valves. On other bikes I always set them up so the aux. tank has it's own fuel pump which feeds fuel directly into the main tank. This can be done by using a hollow bolt in place of one of the petcock attaching bolts or on other bikes by using a fuel vent line and then venting the tank with a tiny hole in the cap or some such bit of inventiveness. Overfilling the main when you transfer fuel never seems to be a problem but if you are concerned about it and you don't have a gauge to monitor then you can just use an aux. tank that is no bigger than your main but a little universal fuel pump doesn't transfer all that fast so it's not likely to overfill the main anyway.
Regards,
Norm
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SCT100
Posted 12/11/2004 7:12 AM (#5617 - in reply to #5614)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question


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Posts: 117
100
Location: In the rust belt somewhere
It's a good day here. It's snowing.

On a retro-British bike like the Bonneville, there isn't much room for extra valves and the like, so a set of one-way ball type check valves is workable.

I'd dread just turning on the auxilliary tank and having the main tank fill to overflowing and dumping gasoline on the engine while riding along. My outfit will be plumbed so that the auxilliary tank will feed the float bowls and at the same time, the ball checks will effectively block off the incoming fuel from the main tank. It's my contention to ride on the hack mounted tank first (using it as the primary tank) until depleted. When there is no fuel left, the positive pressure on the ball checks will cease and they will open allowing the bike tank to begin feeding the carbs. In my case, the hack tank will be of greater capacity than the bike tank, so the overflowing scenario is a real possibility.

I am having a "run dry" type of fuel pump installed in the sidecar. That way, I don't have to worry about switching off the pump whenever the hack tank is dry.

There is a distinct possiblity that in as much as the Bonnie is a sport bike, I will start suffering from the dreaded "numb butt" before either tank is depleted and will have to stop, most likely at a filling station. Either that, or my wife will have to have a "potty" break.

In retrospect, I am not a long distance rider. My primary goal is actually building a combo for showing. Besides, any great distance will be covered with the outfit in the trailer behind our motorhome. I want to be fresh and bug free at my distination.
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claude #3563
Posted 12/11/2004 9:40 AM (#5618 - in reply to #5617)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question



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Location: Middleburg, Pa
Yes, there are quite a few options when going to an auxillary fuel tank. The feasability of each design may be dictated by the fuel system already at hand on the bike itself. Bottom line is if the goal is to carry extra fuel it can be done in various ways. One thing that we cannot afford to compromise on, regardless of the system chosen, is saftey.
If a fuel tank is to be mounted inside the sidecar body itself, typically behind the seat , it needs to be vented to the outside air. The build up of fumes in a confined area as a ligetimate concern. Also many times an auxillary battery may be sharing this space. Again, be sure to take all precautions possible and use common sense. Mounting the battery in it's own vented box apart from the fuel tank is a good policy.
Fuel lines should be run in such a way as to be protected. Few do it but running them inside a protective tube is a good idea, especially if the rig may be taken off road on a regular basis. A limb getting between the frame or mount and a fuel line can rip the line loose ..result? Loss of fuel and possibly a fire.
Electric fuel pumps should really not be wired directly off of the battery or a permanent hot wire. Wire the pump in such a way that it will likely be shut off in the event of a crash. The thought of a disconnected fuel line acting like a garden hose spewing gas around is not a comforting idea.
Some have run the auxillary fuel tank off the main tank and set it up so the bike is fed off the auxillary tank. This is fine but venting becomes an issue as does sealing the system in such a way as to prevent overflows from the typically lower mounted auxillary tank. Think things through before going too far.
Probably the simpliest and maybe safest system is to just allow the extra tank to be a storage tank to act as a fuel transfer system. The idea is to run off the main tank until time has it that fuel is needed and then transfer fuel from the extra tank to the main tank.
The idea of an auxillary tank is very appealing. Even if a rider never plans to enter the iron butt rally it is still nice to have some reserve over and above what is normal. Anyone who has been running on fumes on a dark and dreary night alone in an unfamiliar area has had that feeling of despair creep up on them. Will there be a gas station around the next corner, will I have to borrow gas from a farmer, will I have to walk a zillion miles ..yadda yadda...Not comforting questions to say the least. Extra fuel can quench these concerns but carrying it in a safe manner is essential.


Edited by claude #3563 12/11/2004 9:47 AM
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sebjones
Posted 12/11/2004 3:08 PM (#5620 - in reply to #5256)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question



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Posts: 71
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Location: so. cal
All good information. I have a gas extra gas tank in my Motorvation Spyder. It's very basic. I fill it like any gas tank and is not connected to the main tank. It has a long hose with a plumbing fitting on the end and a fused switched fuel pump . The hose reaches the main tank if I run out, which has never happened, but more importantly I can reach another bike when they run out, which has happened.
Sam
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SCT100
Posted 12/11/2004 4:13 PM (#5621 - in reply to #5620)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question


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Posts: 117
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Location: In the rust belt somewhere
Filling station on wheels so to speak.

How do you like your Spyder? Any comments? What do you have it attached to?

I am like a cat, always inquizitive.
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sidecarLenny
Posted 12/11/2004 10:55 PM (#5626 - in reply to #5256)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question


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Posts: 152
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Location: Warwick NY
Has anyone added a fuel cell/gas tank to their Harley rig?
Iam thinking of adding one to mine and was hoping to et some ideas.
Thanks Lenny
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MikeS
Posted 12/12/2004 5:39 PM (#5631 - in reply to #5626)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question



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Posts: 60
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Location: Grand Marais, MN
Lenny

One item, an advantage with Harley FI, is I know you can pump your fuel from the auxilary tank into the cross over line of your bike's tank. Not all bikes have the option of putting a T into the cross over line.

I have a GL1100 Honda, and I need to decide how I'm going to get the gas from the rig's tank into the bike's tank or engine. The best, is I'd like to find a spot to drill the tank, and put in a fuel line barb to attach the gas line from the hack. I'll then use an electric pump to transfer the gas from the hack tank to the bike tank.

I was thinking of having a tank built, and mount it on the hack frame between the tub and my RH floorboard. I have room, but the balance point of the tank will be a bit ahead of the hack wheel. The location will also center the gas weight between the hack wheel and the mule's wheels, not the best. I hate to use up valuable trunk space for a fuel cell.

Has anyone put a fuel cell between the tub and the mule's RH floor board? Is this a good idea????

MikeSenty
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SCT100
Posted 12/12/2004 6:08 PM (#5632 - in reply to #5631)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question


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Posts: 117
100
Location: In the rust belt somewhere
Remember, you are pumping fuel uphill, against the relentless pull of gravity. Whatever you do, you have to put in an in-line check valve or the fuel will return to the auxilliary tank. The fuel in the main tank will also siphon out and your auxilliary tank will overflow.

The tank I am having custom fabbed for my Spyder will only be about 4-5" high and will occupy the trunk area in the hack. The top most portion will be carpeted excepting for the filler cap so the trunk space will still be viable.

My feed line to the bike will be enclosed inside a stainless steel tube attached to the outrigger that connects to the mount at the top of the rear shock mount. At the exit point, a quick disconnect fitting will attach to the supply line that goes to the main fuel line and the corresponding one way check valves.

The cell will be vented to the atmosphere via a stainless steel line exiting the lower rear corner of the body.

Good grief, this is all costing a ton of money. Any donations??
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sidecarLenny
Posted 12/12/2004 6:25 PM (#5633 - in reply to #5256)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question


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Posts: 152
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Location: Warwick NY
Thanks for the info guys.
My harely is an older 87 heritage softail. Its not fuel injected.
Right now there is an S&S carb on the Bike.
I plan on switching to a Mikuni carb to improve gas mileage.
Any other ideas/input would be of great help.
regards
Lenny
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Hack'n
Posted 12/12/2004 8:58 PM (#5634 - in reply to #5633)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question



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Location: Boise, Idaho
Do you have the International 61 tooth rear sprocket or the US 70 tooth one? I used to get 57 MPG on the Hiway with my '87 FXLR. Python II pipes, EV27 cam, Stock 38mm Keihin with pre '77 accelerator pump kit installed and the 61 tooth rear sprocket. Ran about 2,600RPM @ 70mph.
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sebjones
Posted 12/13/2004 3:01 PM (#5639 - in reply to #5256)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question



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Posts: 71
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Location: so. cal
For sct100
I like the spyder just fine but I have had to space the fender out so that it did not rub on the tire. Flying the chair, (read showing off) pounds the fender down into the tire and has bent the fender bracket. To anyone that has one and has not yet mounted it. You will likely want to shorten the male slider to pull the hack in close to the bike. I took 5 1/2 inches out of mine. Do not poound the slider into the female slider past the cut in the tubing. You'll have a hell of a time backing it out.
Sam
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sebjones
Posted 12/13/2004 3:11 PM (#5640 - in reply to #5256)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question



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Posts: 71
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Location: so. cal
for sidecarlenny
My experience with Mikuni's for Harleys is that the power goes up and the mileage goes down, way down. The S&S I used didn't change the mileage at all. Of course all this depends on the size carb and how much time you take jetting the thing.
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sebjones
Posted 12/13/2004 3:13 PM (#5641 - in reply to #5256)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question



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Posts: 71
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Location: so. cal
Adding a extra fuel supply to fuel injected Harleys can be easy. There are several different gas tanks that I know of. One of them (I think 02-03)has two fuel bungs and one is capped off. We added a fuel tank and a pump into a friends right saddle bag for the Iron Butt and plumbed the fuel line into the tapped off (unused) bung. Worked great. But not all injected engines have this blanked off.
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sidecarLenny
Posted 12/13/2004 9:55 PM (#5648 - in reply to #5256)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question


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Posts: 152
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Location: Warwick NY
HI guys just got home and saw the new post.

THIS IS FOR HACK'N
I have the 70 tooth rear sprocket.
Did you put that pre77 accelerator kit on your 87 FXLR ?

sebjones
Thanks for the heads-up on decreased mileage on the mikuni.
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sidecarLenny
Posted 12/13/2004 10:00 PM (#5649 - in reply to #5256)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question


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Posts: 152
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Location: Warwick NY
For HACK'N again
Regards to your 87 FXLR was that a solo rider?
If so, what % decrease gas mileage would you expect if you added a sidecar.
I understand that would be a rough estimate.
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Hack'n
Posted 12/14/2004 12:41 AM (#5652 - in reply to #5648)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question



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Location: Boise, Idaho
The pre '77 pump kit is available from Gary Bang complete with instructions. One small hole will have to be drilled. It's a quicky job that will get rid of the flat spot off idle and won't cause any significant difference in mileage as long as you are smooth on the throttle (Not a throttle Jockey).

The 61 tooth sprocket and matching belt is like a 13% overdrive. The big twins have plenty of torque to pull it with a sidehack attached.
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Hack'n
Posted 12/14/2004 12:47 AM (#5653 - in reply to #5649)
Subject: RE: Extra gastank for rig question



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The long figures were as a solo. With sidecars mounted it got about 45mpg with a 562 attached and a little less than that with a Sputnik III. Both sidecars had windshields and the bike had either none or an Arlen Ness fairing.
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