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  #1  
Old 06-24-2018, 05:17 PM
Piper J3's Avatar
Piper J3 Piper J3 is offline
 
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Location: Hinckley, Ohio
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Default Fuel Tank Protection…

I recently had to remove my fuel tank to fix a small leak in the top cover seam. I used Van’s 2-part Fuel Tank Sealant and it worked a wonder. When I removed the tank I noticed debris under the tank that was trapped between the baggage floor and the bottom of the tank. The airplane has 350TT and lots of “stuff” has been hauled in the baggage compartment.

My concern is if something should accidentally roll under the tank it could cause chaffing and maybe wear a hole in the bottom of the tank. The tank is suspended about 1/8” above the baggage floor and may even be less clearance when weighted with fuel. I’m also concerned with the flathead screws holding the floor under the tank. If these screws loosen they can easily rise up and chafe against the bottom of the tank.

So I’ve been thinking about this problem and decided to slide a piece of flat cork sheet under the tank to prevent unwanted items from finding their way under the void. The cork sheet will also prevent a floor screw from backing out and touching the bottom of the tank. I found 1/8” x 12” x 20” cork sheet at the local craft store. Cork also comes in 1/16” thickness.

For what it’s worth…
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Jim Stricker
Hinckley, Ohio
EAA #499867
PPL/ASEL 1970 - Sport Pilot since 2007
80 hrs Flying Aeronca Chief 11AC
1130 hrs Flying 46 Piper J-3 Cub
RV-12 E-LSA #120058 AWC Jul 2012 - Bought Flying Oct 2015 with 48TT - Hobbs now 406

LSRM-A Certificate 2016
Special Thanks to EJ Trucks
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  #2  
Old 06-24-2018, 05:25 PM
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Mel Mel is offline
 
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Location: Dallas area
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Default

Not sure I would put cork under it. Cork will retain moisture and can contribute to corrosion.
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Mel Asberry..DAR since last century
A&P/EAA Tech Counselor/Flight Advisor/Nat'l Test Pilot School
Specializing in Amateur-Built and Light-Sport Aircraft
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North Texas (8TA5)
RV-6 Flying since 1993, 172hp O-320, 3-Blade Catto (since 2003)
Legend Cub purchased 12/2017
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  #3  
Old 06-24-2018, 06:03 PM
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Piper J3 Piper J3 is offline
 
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Location: Hinckley, Ohio
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Actually, I think I’ll be OK. Cork is waterproof and naturally mold resistant as well. Apparently cork contains something called suberin, a natural fatty substance that makes cork waterproof. I guess this is what makes cork good for plugging the end of a wine bottle, although I wouldn't know anything about that...
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Jim Stricker
Hinckley, Ohio
EAA #499867
PPL/ASEL 1970 - Sport Pilot since 2007
80 hrs Flying Aeronca Chief 11AC
1130 hrs Flying 46 Piper J-3 Cub
RV-12 E-LSA #120058 AWC Jul 2012 - Bought Flying Oct 2015 with 48TT - Hobbs now 406

LSRM-A Certificate 2016
Special Thanks to EJ Trucks
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  #4  
Old 06-25-2018, 07:38 AM
OkieDave OkieDave is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 103
Default

The cork itself may be waterproof, but cork sheets are porous; they'll soak up liquids and hold them like a sponge via surface tension. The cork used to seal wine bottles is much more dense, thus no leak.
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  #5  
Old 06-25-2018, 08:40 AM
funflying funflying is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: arvada, co
Posts: 386
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Hello Jim

I purchased a Fuel tank pad from Flyboys Accessories (their add is on this site) and put it under my tank. Now as you know the clearance under the tank gets larger from the back baggage wall to the center structure. So I positioned this pad where it would make good contact with bottom of the tank, but not push the back up to much.

Where those flush screws are, and any other spots where any contact between floor and tank appear in the bottom back, I use some heavy anti chaff tape. This tape is one inch wide and has a peel off backing to expose the sticky side. As I recall after the first year I removed the tank and noted a few spots in the back area that left coresponding scuff on the tank bottom. This was four years ago now and no issues with the tape barrier.

Also the Fuel tank pad has a peel off side to be able stick it down. Not being sure if I would continue to use it, and where I would place it, I never stuck it down. I would say it ended up between the baffle and back of the tank.
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