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Old 04-15-2010, 06:14 AM   #1
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Exclamation Repairing metal fuel line

This is on my 1980 Buick LeSabre 4.1L V6 with a Quadrajet side-inlet carburetor.

I spent a bunch of money, weeks of struggle, and an accidental heavy inhalation of burning chemical fumes trying to avoid damaging this fuel line while getting its fitting un-seized. Finally I decided to sacrifice the fitting by cutting it off.

FAIL! The line twisted and cracked while I was working on that. So, I cut it off at the crack, which was at the 90? turn. It is 3/8" outside diameter.

As I understand, my options are:
1. Metal self-flaring repair kit with a bend in it.
2. Buy a DIY single-flare tool and a piece of bent line.
3. Rubber, nylon, or braided steel wrapped line.
4. Have a complete replacement line bent (since nobody's going to stock a fuel line for a 30 year old car), then try to dig everything out to replace it.

What is safe and inexpensive?

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Old 04-15-2010, 06:40 AM   #2
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2 options:

Option 1. Look to see if a local scrapyard has a car you may be able to pull a fuel line off of.

Option 2. Cut the last 6 inches off. New pipe with flare and 90* bend. Attach with 3 inch long piece of rubber fuel line and 2 ring clamps.

Whatever you do, reinstall the new line with teflon tape so it will never sieze again.


EDIT: Don't forget a new fuel filter while you have it apart. They're cheap. Just replace it no matter how many miles are on it.
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Old 04-15-2010, 07:13 AM   #3
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Swagelock fittings.... It is what I used on my fuel system when I modified it on my "race" car. The swagelock fittings are rated at something like 15,000 psi (much higher than your fuel system will ever go.. lol) and would allow you to adapt to a standard AN fitting. Best part, no need for special tools to install, installation is SUPER simple.

http://www.swagelok.com/search/produ...=SS-600-A-6ANF



And a video on the installation of a Swagelock fitting:

http://www.swagelok.com/FittingInstallVideo.htm


I believe they can also be taken apart an reused if you ever need to service that fuel line again.
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Old 04-15-2010, 07:13 AM   #4
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Regarding Jay's good ideas:

1. That's a lot of work, on the off-chance that I could even find a matching 4.1 V6 in a junkyard (99.9999% sure I can't).

2. I forgot the option of a new pre-flared pipe and just using a 3 inch rubber line. That's approximately what I meant with my option 3 above though, and it seems like the most likely solution.

I already have the new filter. That's the whole reason I did this. I definitely plan to use teflon tape and/or anti-seize stuff. I'm going to try to make a habit of it for most fasteners on my vehicles.

Edit: Also, I'll have to check out the swage lock fitting.
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Old 04-15-2010, 08:05 AM   #5
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I'd cut the metal line again about 7-10 inches from the carb, slip a piece of 3/8" ID rubber gas hose at least 3 inches over the metal tubing (assuming no rust and it is smooth there) and then buy a metal barbed fitting that will screw into the carb filter fitting. Use 2 hose clamps on each end of the rubber hose. That line will see a max of 8 psi and should be fine.

I cut a section of corroded and leaking metal fuel line out of an 87 Acura (fuel injected= 35 psi) and did the same type of repair and never had another problem with it.

The swage lock fitting will only work on a straight run of tubing. I used one on a hydraulic clutch line and it worked fine.
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Old 04-15-2010, 09:36 AM   #6
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i like Erik's idea, but would add an inline filter to the rubber hose.
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Old 04-15-2010, 09:52 AM   #7
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Teflon tape/goop from a tube is a no-no for fuel fittings.

You "shouldn't" need anything... but if you do, a very small amount of gasoline specific tape can be used.

I like Erik's idea also.
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Old 04-15-2010, 11:24 AM   #8
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I've always used teflon tape on fuel line fittings. Never had it dissolve or give me other problems.
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Old 04-15-2010, 11:25 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Erik View Post
I'd cut the metal line again about 7-10 inches from the carb, slip a piece of 3/8" ID rubber gas hose at least 3 inches over the metal tubing (assuming no rust and it is smooth there) and then buy a metal barbed fitting that will screw into the carb filter fitting. Use 2 hose clamps on each end of the rubber hose. That line will see a max of 8 psi and should be fine.
I have seen too many people use this technique on low pressure lines (probably more than the 8psi max you mention, but still not anything like 50+psi) and have them fail on them, usually at the most inopportune times. Have heard of people wiping out transmissions when they install a trans cooler by splicing lines and then one slips off and drains the tranny of fluid.

He asked for a safe and inexpensive way. While using Swagelock fittings and possibly a stainless braided line section might not be the cheapest way, it should still be able to easily done for $50 or so. To me that is inexpensive for a SAFE and quality repair.

Not knocking on the rubber hose and clamp method for those that want to use it, just saying it is not for me.
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Old 04-15-2010, 11:56 AM   #10
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Swagelock fitting I linked is $11.50 (if you wanted the male version, it would be $13.80 and can be found here: Swagelock).

Depending on actual dimensions you are working with on the car you could possibly get away with something like this to attach the carb to the Swagelock and avoid making a small braided line:

Earl's AT922166ERL (90* Male 6AN to Male Swivel 3/8" NPT) which runs about $25.00




Might have to verify where the AN would start to seal into the Swagelock to make sure it gets clocked the right way, but after you get that fitting connected to the Swagelock, the swivel would allow you to screw it into the carb.

You have any idea on what the thread is on the carb?
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