Aftermarket fuel tanks vs. OEM

69hurstolds

Geezer
Supporting Member
Jan 2, 2006
6,633
113
I'm not one much to get into many specifics on aftermarket parts for our G-bodies, but with the intermittent fuel gage issue on the 87 442 (23K miles), I suspect it MAY be the sender. Ground and power wire seem to be fine. Which means it's about a 99.9% chance of dropping the tank to do more investigating. Not sure when, just not in this 100+ degree weather right now. Humidity will melt you. Anyhoo, while I'm in there, I'm going to likely replace the sender anyway, regardless. New sock and O-ring at MINIMUM. All with GM stuff, of course. The outside of the tank of what is visible is perfect. How could it not be? It was Rusty Jones'd right after the original owner bought it new so the bottom and sides of the tank are covered in that black waxy, goo coating (that's going to be fun). Not sure about what is on top of the tank, but can't be much more than dirt and maybe a little surface dust-rust I imagine. The car has not led a rough life at all.

My question revolves around the gas tank itself. Not knowing what it looks like inside, I don't expect to see 400 lbs of rust, but I'm sure it won't be pristine either after 35 years. If I can clean out the tank, I'll do that, but if it comes down to replacing, I don't have much in options except an aftermarket tank. So which tanks are ones to look at, ones to avoid, etc., etc.? I've read about fill problems with the new tanks with necks pre-installed, but I was wondering if those fill problems exist if you use the original filler neck on a new tank that comes without a neck? I am NOT going to stick a vent tube in the top of the neck, so that option's out. Does anyone know exactly what the issue is with the tank to keep it from acting normal while filling, or have they resolved any of these issues?

Again, not expecting anything crazy, but if I drop the tank and find a disaster, I may have to buy a new aftermarket tank and I honestly wouldn't know which "brand" is best. I know prices are all over the map, but I suspect there's probably only 2 or 3 companies at most, if not just one, making them under different brand names.

Looking for facts and opinions.
 

383_StealthRam

Greasemonkey
Supporting Member
Dec 29, 2016
179
63
Personally I'm with you, if your original tank isn't in terrible shape from a corrosion perspective I would just have it cleaned by a local radiator shop or do it your self with the appropriate solvents and have it air dry out.

On mine, the original tank was for the carb 307 engine and only had the front to rear (slosh) baffle which I used for years with an EFI sending unit and fuel pump, but when I was down at 1/4 tank or less and went around turns a little too fast (ie; highway on/off ramps ) I would tend to stall.

About 12 yrs ago I put in a SPECTRE PREMIUM brand fuel tank for a Grand National (part #GM3C) which has the baffling completely around the sender and fuel pump to alleviate the side to side slosh and pump starvation issue. I don't know if they still offer them separately but I bought the GN tank without the neck, and purchased the correct (CUTLASS FN09) neck and silver soldered it on myself. I had a friend that swapped a OEM GN tank into a CUTLASS for an EFI swap; the neck shapes are different and it rubbed the fascia behind the filler door.

Anyway, as far as fitment and quality I've got no complaints with the SPECTRE aftermarket tank. It's held up well and I didn't spray any coatings, or paint on it at all since it's been installed. Last pic below is fairly recent in car view.

Hope you find your original tank to be clean inside!!


GN Tank and Necks.JPG




IMG_20201210_182530411.jpg




In Car Tank.JPG
 
  • Agree
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users

79 USA 1

G-Body Guru
Sep 2, 2011
924
93
Cheektowaga, New York
I had an issue back in late 1998 with a fuel tank on my 86 El Camino made by "Spectra Premium", came with the fill neck installed and had venting issues when filling. The parts warehouse I was dealing with at the time was aware of the issues with the older stock and offered a replacement with a newer build date code. Problem solved, I understand there was an issue with the vent tube getting pinched during the fill neck installation process.
I also believe Spectra Premium tanks are built in Canada or at least they were years ago.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

69hurstolds

Geezer
Supporting Member
Thread starter
Jan 2, 2006
6,633
113
About 12 yrs ago I put in a SPECTRE PREMIUM
SPECTRE... ? Not just a regular Spectre. A PREMIUM Spectre.

Watching too many 007 movies again. :)

Must...kill....Blofeld...

spectre-teaser.jpg


But yeah, I can see how the filler necks can be an issue. Pretty nice move on putting a different neck in the GN tank, though. Life finds a way. Interesting that rockauto doesn't have any filler necks for Olds in stock as of this writing. And who's LILAND GLOBAL? Is it just a rebranded Spectra Premium with a 20 dollar markup? Still, not a terrible price for a new gas tank for 132 and change. 5% discount brings it down to around $126.15 without a neck. Looks like they just added an "I" to the front of a Spectra part number. WTF. Wish it was known who makes what and for whom. I do know that sometimes they make different grades of aftermarket parts, such as the cheaper "just good enough to function for a while" and then step up to "Near OEM quality", for the same parts, and priced accordingly. Maybe made with better welds or thicker steel, better corrosion protection, etc.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

64nailhead

Goat Herder
Supporting Member
Dec 1, 2014
4,832
113
Upstate NY
I've never dared to try a tank with the 'install yourself' filler neck. I've bought the cheapest possible multiple times, Rock Auto or Advanced Auto and welded sumps into all of them - never leaked and seem to work fine for at least 2-3 years (so far). Also, I've welded sumps into two factory original GM tanks that looked pretty good.......................until they didn't ;-/ All of the original tanks leaked, eventually.
 
  • Agree
Reactions: 1 user

Ribbedroof

Comic Book Super Hero
Supporting Member
Jan 4, 2009
4,493
113
Wellston, OK
Coupe has a new tank (I forget whose). i bought the tank without neck and JB welded the original neck in. Works fine, and was all that was available to me locally at the time. Shipping was way high on tanks at the time, I'm sure it still is. Last time I ordered a wagon tank I ordered the one with the neck...it came in a square box with the neck poking out:roll:.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

383_StealthRam

Greasemonkey
Supporting Member
Dec 29, 2016
179
63
SPECTRE... ? Not just a regular Spectre. A PREMIUM Spectre.

That's funny.....I actually noticed I spelled it wrong based on the watermark in the pic but was too lazy to go back and edit it. I sometimes get carried away with CAPS online, didn't mean to shout...LMAO !



Watching too many 007 movies again. :)

Must...kill....Blofeld...

spectre-teaser.jpg


But yeah, I can see how the filler necks can be an issue. Pretty nice move on putting a different neck in the GN tank, though. Life finds a way. Interesting that rockauto doesn't have any filler necks for Olds in stock as of this writing. And who's LILAND GLOBAL? Is it just a rebranded Spectra Premium with a 20 dollar markup? Still, not a terrible price for a new gas tank for 132 and change. 5% discount brings it down to around $126.15 without a neck. Looks like they just added an "I" to the front of a Spectra part number. WTF. Wish it was known who makes what and for whom. I do know that sometimes they make different grades of aftermarket parts, such as the cheaper "just good enough to function for a while" and then step up to "Near OEM quality", for the same parts, and priced accordingly. Maybe made with better welds or thicker steel, better corrosion protection, etc.

One other thing about the OEM GN tank vs the Spectra is that the OEM uses plastic baffling with a fill hole which have been known to sometimes break loose inside the tank causing noises, and sending unit/pump screen issues iirc. The Spectra GN tank has a trap door and metal sump/baffle instead that's spot welded in place.
 

69hurstolds

Geezer
Supporting Member
Thread starter
Jan 2, 2006
6,633
113
Appreciate the info on the GN tank, and it's good to know in general, especially for those needing it, but I'm guessing I won't need the "sump" style with extra baffles. Just a plain, old carburetor tank. I just know how that many aftermarket companies pump out "generic" style parts that barely or don't quite fit or you have to modify to make work. In the event I need a new tank, which I hope not, I want to stay away from the crappy tank brands, if there's more than one. Got a feeling they're like the body parts. Only one place making the stuff and you get what you get no matter who you buy from.
 

79 USA 1

G-Body Guru
Sep 2, 2011
924
93
Cheektowaga, New York
LILAND GLOBAL, not sure on their fuel tanks but I purchased an all aluminum radiator for my 79 Monte Carlo from them through Rock Auto. Decent part for the price (Pre-plandemic) although it is China made. They seem to be a distributor located in Syracuse NY.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

GBodyForum is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. Amazon, the Amazon logo, AmazonSupply, and the AmazonSupply logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates.

Please support GBodyForum Sponsors

Classic Truck Consoles Dixie Restoration Depot Mike's Montes P-S-T Southside Machine Performance UMI Performance

Contact Admin@GBodyForum.com for info on becoming a sponsor