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  #1  
Old 05-16-2013, 10:07 AM
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Question Fuel tank shielding worry...

Ok I don't usually do any hardcore off-roading, but I do live in a remote rural area where the "roads" to get to my residence resemble Rally Racing test track or at best a rough trail than a "road". All my previous trucks has some sort of tank shielding, my 2003 Tundra has a stout thick plastic tray that has a flap that extends up the entire leading edge and along the drive-shaft side. EVEN my 1997 4x2 Nissan has STEEL shields on front and bottom and it's also a STEEL tank, instead of this buttery-soft plastic (from feel) on the Ram.

So am I the only one that is sorely disappointed that there is NO fuel tank protection at all? I can't find anything to remedy this "issue"...

or is this a non-issue??
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Old 05-16-2013, 10:16 AM
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Every steel tank I've had in a vehicle eventually rusted a hole through it. I'm happy with the plastic.

The tank should be above the frame rail so should be protected from all reasonable things. even if you had a metal shield it would just bend and hit the tank, unless you build a cage around the tank nearly as thick as the frame itself.
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Old 05-16-2013, 12:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snrusnak View Post
Every steel tank I've had in a vehicle eventually rusted a hole through it. I'm happy with the plastic.

The tank should be above the frame rail so should be protected from all reasonable things. even if you had a metal shield it would just bend and hit the tank, unless you build a cage around the tank nearly as thick as the frame itself.
Better take a look below on your truck and see for yourself. I'll post a pic if you don't believe below:

Plastic is fine as long as it's protected adequately from the eventual if seldom road debris. I would forgive Ram for not having ANY shielding if: my truck was not a 4x4, and the tank was indeed mounted higher than the frame, which it is NOT, hangs down to almost a full 2 inches from the frame rail for nearly 18 inches! That's a LOT of tank baring itself to a boulder or debris and the way I'm seeing scars on my other vehicles it's more a matter of WHEN it gets pierced, not IF.

By the way, ALL my steel tanked vehicles do fine especially if you don't leave them empty OR use ethanol fuels. 17 years and counting on the steel tanked Nissan, and it's heavily plated outside too, thank goodness.

I do a LOT of offroad traveling so this is very important to me.
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Old 05-16-2013, 01:23 PM
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The steel tanks I've had have rusted from the outside, not inside. Most were northern vehicles though.

I don't recall my tank sitting lower than the frame, I've been under my truck many times. I change my own oil, do the trans services, and did my exhaust. I may be wrong as I never paid much attention but I think that would have caught my attention as an issue like you are saying.
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Old 05-16-2013, 01:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snrusnak View Post
The steel tanks I've had have rusted from the outside, not inside. Most were northern vehicles though.

I don't recall my tank sitting lower than the frame, I've been under my truck many times. I change my own oil, do the trans services, and did my exhaust. I may be wrong as I never paid much attention but I think that would have caught my attention as an issue like you are saying.

I can see rust issues up north...I live down where when it snows its like "WTF Is this WHITE sh*t!"

What cab do you have? I'm pretty sure I have the 26g tank and perhaps if you have a different cab the mounting relative to the rails will change?
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Old 05-16-2013, 01:29 PM
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I have qc 2wd. I'm curious now, will check tonight to see where the tank sits. Also 26 gal.
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Old 05-18-2013, 03:44 PM
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Here's some pics of the 32 gallon tank on my Longhorn. Definitely hangs below the frame but the front of it is in line with the transfer case skid plate. If you hit the transfer case shield, its probably time to stop and rethink things.

Plastic fuel tanks have been in use for quite awhile on most vehicles. Nothing new or bad about that. They are tough and resistant to puncture. They flex and drag rather than dent and rip. From the looks of the way this one is mounted its going to drag over obstructions so unless you drop the middle of the truck on top of something pointy or manage to flip a heavy limb into it somehow it should be pretty safe. Flying rocks aren't going to damage a plastic tank the way they might a steel tank.

I went web crawling for a fuel tank shield and there's not really much out there for any pickup trucks anymore. Jeeps and Cherokees have some options and some of the older trucks. Guess there's just not much of a market.

Apparently people were using the Ram 2500 TRX4 fuel tank shield on older 1500s. I think the only Ram that has a factory fuel tank skid plate on it now is the PowerWagon. Maybe it could be bubba'd to fit.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg FrontOfTank_rs.jpg (50.1 KB, 24 views)
File Type: jpg MiddleOfTank_rs.jpg (51.8 KB, 23 views)
File Type: jpg RearThirdOfTank_rs.jpg (50.6 KB, 22 views)
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Old 05-18-2013, 04:27 PM
mdragon9 mdragon9 is offline
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Did a little more poking around on the Power Wagon skid plate idea and turns out someone did just that on a 2008 1500.

Doesn't look to hard to do. Might be an option for you Turbohawk, any body shop should be able to make it work.

Here's the link h ttp://www.**************/forums/showthread.php?t=203204
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Old 05-20-2013, 03:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdragon9 View Post
Did a little more poking around on the Power Wagon skid plate idea and turns out someone did just that on a 2008 1500.

Doesn't look to hard to do. Might be an option for you Turbohawk, any body shop should be able to make it work.

Here's the link h ttp://www.**************/forums/showthread.php?t=203204
Thanks for the ideas mdragon, not sure why that hyperlink was **** out?

This is actually the 2nd automobile I've owned with a plastic tank. The first was a 1995 Cadillac Deville and it was unshielded too. Of course, who'd go rock crawling in that? I thought the Tundra was plastic but turns out it is steel, ironically, with a thick plastic tray "shield" on the bottom of it.

I don't plan on doing hard core rock crawling but my road is a torture track and I'm liable to come home or leave home with a hole in this big ol plastic tub.
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Old 05-20-2013, 04:06 PM
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Our plastic tanks are pretty tough. My Ram slid sideways off a trail and landed on a tree stump. Rear tires off the ground and truck supported by the tank. I had a lot of jacking and blocking to get it off. Cut some logs to put under tires and winched it off. Dented the plastic a bit, no leak or problem. Steel tanks suck, I've replaced a bunch of them from rust.
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