I know this subject has been covered before but maybe someone can re-post the correct placement for running the fuel line from frame mounted tank to carb. I have a very slight grade coming out of my garage. I thought I had the fuel line problem solved but today I ran out of gas on that grade.. In frustration I removed the line thinking that I could just cut off a small amount and reroute ( wrong plan ) now the line is too short and won't seal. I hate it when I do stupid stuff. Also is it possible to use copper tubing in place of steel? It would be much easier to make adjustments, but don't want a safety issue. any help would be greatly appreciated. Harv.
Steel is better. Copper has a reputation for breaking from metal fatigue due to vibration. If you don't have one, you can get a tubing bender for under $10.
(Message edited by steve_jelf_parkerfield_ks on December 13, 2014)
I wouldn't use copper or brass. It's been reported to get brittle with vibration. I use steel brake line. It's perfect for the job and is readily available at just about any local auto parts store.
I guess Steve wins the typing contest.
Steel is the safest. You can order a line from the parts suppliers or get a piece of steel brake line at any auto parts store. Two things to keep in mind when routing the line. How close it is to the exhaust pipe. It should cross the pipe and then run along the frame rail to the carburetor. There is a clamp bolted to the brake crossshaft bracket. And behind the engine mount wood block and up to the carburetor. One of the important things is to cross the exhaust pipe not too close. The other is to have the middle of the line lower than the ends. It should go up from the center to tank and to the carb. Not up and down and up and down. Any air or vapor bubble should be pushed toward the end of the line and not compress in the middle, which is called "Vapor Lock".
I will attach a picture of the way I routed mine. The sediment bulb is turned so the outlet is toward the right side of the car.
Another thing is to keep enough gas in the tank so that it won't "run out" on a hill.
In 50 years,I have never had my copper lines break.
Jack I'll raise you 2, my copper line has been there 52 years. but I do have a scar on my left arm from trying to turn off a fuel tap when it got burnt on the exhaust pipe when steel line broke. The movement of the fuel line is minute.
If you're paranoid about copper (though I don't think it's an issue) and don't like working steel, you can use cunifer and have the best of both worlds:
I have tremendous respect for both Jack and Peter as Model T experts far above my knowledge, but I have had two copper fuel lines break just before the carburetor ("carbie" for Peter) for no apparent reason. When in doubt....
i have a car made in 1938 with a copper fuel line. The fuel line is the only thing that has not rusted. The steel line on my T is rusty already and it is only a few years old.
I had a copper line break on a tour right at the fitting at the sediment bowl on a '26 coupe. The T motor is mounted rigid to the frame and front end and vibration will cause the copper to stress and crack. If you use copper an easy fix for this is to cut out an inch or two anywhere and add a section of neoprene gas line with 2 hose clamps. This will take out all the vibration and all will be fine.
I highly recommend this "anti vibration" modification as the last thing you want is a gas leak on a hot manifold. $2 might save your car from burning up as you can't open the hood to shut off the gas.
Thanks to all. Looking at Norman's routing picture I can see my line is not even close. My line runs straight from the bowl and crosses the exhaust where it drops down next to the hogs head.
I think I'll stick with steel, I'll make a run to town tomorrow for line and try to run it correctly. Hopefully that will solve the problem. I will let you know. Again thanks to all. Harv
Something not mentioned so far;
Most are saying the line is breaking at the end fitting, often if the wrong fitting is used it will lead to failure.
The steel line I mentioned had a compression nipple fitting, they tend to cut into the pipe and fail.
I always use a soldered nipple, maybe that's why it works better.
And originally a packing was used in the connecting nut.
Also soft piping whether copper of steel will be an advantage.
My speedster has copper fuel and oil lines ( pressure fed) the lines have coils wound into them so they flex, Tim's "anti Vibration' modification is also a good idea
My experience is the same as Uncle Jack's and Peter Kables. I would just put in a copper line with compression fittings and be done with it. I used a 5/16 OD line on my 24.
A compression fitting with the ring will break if the line is not supported,a flare fitting is much better for this application, i have worked with copper tube under extreme pressure 600 psi with a vibration and they have lasted ,some of them since the 30's.
I too have had a copper line, with ferrules on a T for over 50 years with zero problems. I have another T that I used new brake line tubing, which looks just like the original. I used the felt packing on the ends of it, and have no problems with it either. I like to keep my sediment bulb in the stock position.
Add a barbed fitting or make up a nipple using a piece of fuel line, nut and packing/ferrule at the carb and use a piece of rubber fuel line between the carb and the now too short fuel line. I just slide the rubber fuel line on and clamp both ends. Have not had any leaks and it adds flex to the line.
Rubber fuel line, use the modern stuff to match today's fuels.
Mark - I do the exact same thing you have described except that I use a short length of the best rubber fuel line I can find that's approved for modern fuels AT BOTH ENDS of the fuel line. A few inches of it right out of the sediment bowl and a few inches of it out of the carburetor. Not only totally insulates the steel or copper fuel line (I use steel brake line) from vibration, but this set-up doesn't care how much chassis flex might occur.
I like the idea of just splicing rubber tubing on my existing line after I get it rerouted correctly. I have attached a picture of the current location of the fuel line. I have developed a leak at the handle of the sediment bowl. Is the bowl an absolute necessity or can the line just be run from an elbow coming out of the bottom of the tank? Harv.
The sediment bowl acts as your filter; traps rust, dirt and water. Most modern inline filters do not allow for enough gas flow esp when the tank gets low.
It is also your main gas tank shut-off !
Whew, there for a while I thought I was the only one who used rubber fuel line at the carb and the tank. I always figured it isolated the steel line and made it less susceptible to breakage due to vibration.
Seems like many use rubber line to insulate against vibration. Can anyone tell me how long of a piece of rubber on each end of the line, or does it really matter? Also this unit will be used only for local parades and shows and not to tour so there shouldn't be much fuel contamination problem. Harv.
There must be a few of us using a short section of rubber line. My line is copper to a shutoff valve on the frame rail under the floorboards (accessible through a small hole in the floorboard - so I can shut fuel off quickly without lifting the hood). From the shutoff valve to the carb is rubber fuel hose.
Can't claim 52 years but it's worked so far.
I used Tim's vibration isolator with the addition of a small fuel valve hooked directly to the carb. A small ball valve works the best.
Harvey, I think your fuel line route is fine. Not much chance of vapor lock from proximity to the exhaust pipe. Plenty of distance all the way.
What a wonderful wealth of information this thread has claimed. Having looked at your routing Steve I like the way you have clamped the line to the hogs head. I originally ran my line as it is now to keep it as far from the exhaust to prevent vapor lock. I am going to add a piece of rubber tube to salvage this line and follow your routing example. I'll post how it works. The weather hear is ugly so I may not get to town for a couple of days we will see. Harv