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Thread: YAFTCQ - Yet another Fuel Tank Cover Question

  1. #1
    Senior Member Citizen's Avatar
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    YAFTCQ - Yet another Fuel Tank Cover Question

    There have been a few posts on this, and I have read them, but didnít get a consensus on whatís the best thing to do. So here goesÖ

    A few years ago, I had clutch master cylinder failure, which I repaired. During that repair, I had the same condition so many have you have reported, that of rust (and some corrosion) on the top (hidden) side of the gas tank cover plate, caused by fluid that had dripped down and collected on it. I did the repair of the cover plate myself, by removing all the rust I could using naval jelly (a rust remover), cleaning, drying, and then sealing with POR-15.

    I thought it would last, but now just a few years later, I see that moisture must have gotten under the POR-15, and caused rust underneath, which apparently renders the POR-15 useless. See the pictures. The plate is now in about the same condition when I made the first repair. The bottom side (the side visible under the car) is ok, and the entire panel appears to be structurally sound.

    Top Side (hidden)

    Bottom (exposed)

    So the reason for my post is; whatís a DeLorean owner/non-professional mechanic supposed to do? I did the best repair I knew how to do. Iím not a professional mechanic and I donít have mechanicís shop, only my garage, and tools and supplies available to me that I can purchase retail. Should I:

    1. Cheap. Make the same repair again, hoping it will get my by a few more years? Then, do it again, then again, and again as long as I own the car?

    2. Expensive (I assume). Replace the entire plate with a new one, believing that only a brand new cover plate will be sealed completely, and not let new moisture in?

    3. Take the plate to a professional, someplace to be media-blasted, then powder-coated (both of which I cannot do myself in my garage)? I have no idea where a place may be that would do this work, or how much it would cost.

    Whatís a guy supposed to do? I read the post here about drilling a hole to prevent future moisture collection, but Iím not sure I want to do that yet. I like the idea of a washer between the plate and the frame.

    Thanks in advance for your advice/comments.


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  2. #2
    Administrator Ron's Avatar
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    Nix the naval jelly -- Sandblast it first, then immediately prime and seal it....

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Got mine powder coated. They did the blasting and sealing then powder coating for a hundred bucks. Well worth it to me.

    My .02
    Dave B.

  4. #4
    Daily Driver ssdelorean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post

    2. Expensive (I assume). Replace the entire plate with a new one, believing that only a brand new cover plate will be sealed completely, and not let new moisture in?


    Is $274.99 too expensive to never have to worry about doing it again?
    This is what I did after 30 years & 217k miles. Mine was way worse, had a hole rusted clear thru.
    Shannon Y
    1st angle drive - 58,027 miles (20 years) -- original
    2nd angle drive - 48,489 miles (21 years) -- original from donor
    3rd angle drive - 26,572 miles (2 years 3 months) -- DMCH
    4th angle drive - 21,988 miles (1 year 11 months) -- DMCH
    5th angle drive - 7,137 miles (10 months 2 days) -- DMCH
    6th angle drive - OVER 96,704 miles and counting (OVER 10 yr 10 months & counting) -- new Martin Gutkowski unit
    over 228K miles

  5. #5
    Under Ron's watchful eye. Glory be to Ron! Michael's Avatar
    Join Date:  May 2011

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    My VIN:    None of your business you creepy psycho vin counter...get a life

    Doesn't one of the vendors do then in SS?

  6. #6
    Senior Member Chris 16409's Avatar
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    Location:  Fresno, CA.

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    My VIN:    16409

    This is the one Ed at DeLorean Europe sells. I have one and like it.
    Chris Miles

    For Better or Worse I own a DeLorean!
    1983 Grey Manual, VIN #16409, Fresno, California

  7. #7
    Senior Member Citizen's Avatar
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    Location:  Houston, TX

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    Well, I asked my neighbor (who restores old Fords), and he gave me a reference to a shop that does sand-blasting. So I tried that route. For $65, the guy sand-blasted the problem areas (much of the epoxy coating was still good), then cleaned and etched it. Some pits found, but no holes, so the plate is still solid. The same day (yesterday), I took the plate home and immediately sprayed it with primer, thinking I didn't want ambient moisture to affix itself to the bare metal just to be covered later with primer and paint. Here is what it looked like:

    After sand-blasting and etching, but before primer:

    IMG_20190325_153634384.jpg IMG_20190325_153605373.jpg

    After primer applied:

    IMG_20190326_111813288.jpg IMG_20190326_111828416.jpg

    Now, I think all I need to do is paint with Rustoleum Smoke Gray, "Gloss Protective Enamel", and the panel should be good to go (should I have used POR-15??). There is a small, 1-2 inch place on the frame near where the cover plate attaches, where the epoxy came loose, so I have to address that somehow before I reinstall the cover plate. It will be difficult, as I'll have to scrape, brush, sand, clean, prime and paint working under the car, but I guess has to be done.


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