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  #21  
Old 02-02-2020, 05:23 PM
lon@carolon.net lon@carolon.net is offline
 
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Location: Santa Monica, California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Vaughan View Post
A rigid stick does work. I have two made out of Sitka Spruce. Measures from 2 gallons up to 19.8 and above to full filler neck
Sitka Spruce is flexible enough to get past the bend in the filler neck, but stiff enough to reach the bottom of the tank? Id love for you to describe how you made yours.
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  #22  
Old 02-02-2020, 07:18 PM
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Piper J3 Piper J3 is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lon@carolon.net View Post
Sitka Spruce is flexible enough to get past the bend in the filler neck, but stiff enough to reach the bottom of the tank? Id love for you to describe how you made yours.
Easy to do. Use table saw to make 1/8" x 5/16" stick about 48" long. Cut end of stick at 45 deg angle to help get past the aluminum fuel return line that is turned vertical inside the base of the filler neck. Takes a little fiddling each time to get stick to enter the fuel tank. Stick will bend nicely to pass through the bend in the filler neck.

Next completely drain the tank and add fuel in two gallon increments. After each pour you insert the stick. Withdraw the stick and use a lead pencil to make a horizontal line for every two gallons. You'll end up with (you guessed it) ten lines. Graphite mark from the lead pencil will not wash off with gasoline.
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  #23  
Old 02-02-2020, 07:53 PM
RFSchaller RFSchaller is offline
 
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Location: Phoenix, AZ
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I use a piece of the nylon brake line to sound my tank. Its easy to push down the filler neck and gives a clear sounding. I calibrated it when I filled the tank the first time.
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  #24  
Old 02-03-2020, 10:13 AM
rongawer rongawer is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Brentwood, CA
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Although it appears that this issue is being addressed through other testing, I want be sure no misunderstanding occurs with the use of Decalin.

Decalin has a high affinity for dispersing, meaning that if you put any amount in 100LL fuel, it will completely disperse within the fuel over a short period of time with no mixing required.

It will not come out of solution in fuel.

Even though your cap is on tight, there are two o-rings, so if there is water intrusion, it could be the oft ignored center stem o-ring is allowing water to come in. A little spray lubricant on the stem, and they cycle it a couple times, can help that. Or just replace both, especially if it's been a year.
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  #25  
Old 02-03-2020, 10:54 AM
lon@carolon.net lon@carolon.net is offline
 
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Location: Santa Monica, California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rongawer View Post
Although it appears that this issue is being addressed through other testing, I want be sure no misunderstanding occurs with the use of Decalin.

Decalin has a high affinity for dispersing, meaning that if you put any amount in 100LL fuel, it will completely disperse within the fuel over a short period of time with no mixing required.

It will not come out of solution in fuel.

Even though your cap is on tight, there are two o-rings, so if there is water intrusion, it could be the oft ignored center stem o-ring is allowing water to come in. A little spray lubricant on the stem, and they cycle it a couple times, can help that. Or just replace both, especially if it's been a year.
Thanks for this. I wondered whether my o-rings were letting moisture in, because they were more than a year old. As a result, I replaced both o-rings a couple of days ago, but haven't checked for water in the fuel since.
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  #26  
Old 02-04-2020, 03:29 PM
rongawer rongawer is offline
 
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Location: Brentwood, CA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lon@carolon.net View Post
Thanks for this. I wondered whether my o-rings were letting moisture in, because they were more than a year old. As a result, I replaced both o-rings a couple of days ago, but haven't checked for water in the fuel since.
Good deal.

You might consider using a little DC-4 (Dow Corning #4) silicon grease on the large o-ring and a shot of a medium weight spray lube on the center stem once in a while (I do it monthly) to help the o-rings stay clean, lubricated and last longer.
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  #27  
Old 02-04-2020, 04:33 PM
lon@carolon.net lon@carolon.net is offline
 
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Location: Santa Monica, California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rongawer View Post
Good deal.

You might consider using a little DC-4 (Dow Corning #4) silicon grease on the large o-ring and a shot of a medium weight spray lube on the center stem once in a while (I do it monthly) to help the o-rings stay clean, lubricated and last longer.
I checked the fuel this morning for the first time since changing the o-rings. There was no water in the fuel! Now I'm going to get some DC-4 and spray lube too. Thanks!
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  #28  
Old 02-04-2020, 11:24 PM
NinerBikes NinerBikes is offline
 
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Location: Granada Hills
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lon@carolon.net View Post
I checked the fuel this morning for the first time since changing the o-rings. There was no water in the fuel! Now I'm going to get some DC-4 and spray lube too. Thanks!
Try 1/4 tank of fuel in storage, and let it sit through some foggy mornings for a week or two, and then let us know the results, if your sample is still water free. Then you'll know for sure if it was the seals or not.
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  #29  
Old 02-05-2020, 01:40 PM
printbr printbr is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Location: Richland, WA
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Default Phase Separation

One possibility I did not see mentioned could be phase separation if the fuel is Ethanol Mogas. I am not an expert by any means but I have recently read a couple of articles about the different types of fuel we use, and old E10 can absorb quite a lot of water, and then when it reaches a saturation point it will separate, just as the OP is describing.
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  #30  
Old 02-05-2020, 01:53 PM
lon@carolon.net lon@carolon.net is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Santa Monica, California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by printbr View Post
One possibility I did not see mentioned could be phase separation if the fuel is Ethanol Mogas. I am not an expert by any means but I have recently read a couple of articles about the different types of fuel we use, and old E10 can absorb quite a lot of water, and then when it reaches a saturation point it will separate, just as the OP is describing.
No, I don't use Mogas. I use 100LL, and add Decalin.

I thought I'd solved the problem by changing the o-rings on the fuel cap. This morning, before adding fuel, I checked my fuel, and again had no water in it. But I then added fuel from the self-service pump, and when I checked after doing that, I had the same 1/2 inch of water that caused me to start this thread in the first place. A follow-up test had no water in it. There wasn't anyone around to ask whether others were finding water in the self-service pump fuel, but that's the latest suspect!

Here's another piece of the puzzle: I had the fuel pump on when I tested first thing this morning. But I didn't have the fuel pump on when I tested after adding fuel. I know the POH says to test with the fuel pump on, but what effect would that have on water in the fuel?
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