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Bad LPG installs. 

 

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Mon May 16, 2011 7:43 pm 
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tickford_6 wrote:
snap0964 wrote:
Does AS1425 specify the strength of the tank mounting bolts, e.g. mild or HT ??


Yes it does specify the size and strength of the bolts.

madmax wrote:
How old was the install??

Back in the eighties (in Vic) no compliance plate was required for rego. Many cars were converted by their owners some good many bad. It was also common practice by even professional installers to run the service line through garden hose and cable tie it to either brake lines or petrol lines.
At the time I worked in a full service station and some of the installs you would see would make your hair curl. Ex-Forklift tanks were popular. AFL valves were only just starting to appear in newer installs. Most cars were filled up inside the boot and had to be bleed off to find 80% Some of these bleed valves bleed off into the boot space. There was no requirement to have a safety shut off valve in the engine bay only on the tank.

So could this Troopy be that old?


It's old enough that it was installed before VIC came into line with the rest of the country.
BUT the way the system is meant to work is that these sorts of the things are meant to be picked up during servicing or other work on the vehicle and be bought up to the current standard.
VIC has been doing it properly for over 15 years now............


If its a 1 owner car - and the previous owner was cheap enough to install it himself - do you really think his going to splurge out and pay someone for an oil change? :P

 

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Mon May 16, 2011 8:37 pm 
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Mitch_ wrote:
tickford_6 wrote:
snap0964 wrote:
Does AS1425 specify the strength of the tank mounting bolts, e.g. mild or HT ??


Yes it does specify the size and strength of the bolts.

madmax wrote:
How old was the install??

Back in the eighties (in Vic) no compliance plate was required for rego. Many cars were converted by their owners some good many bad. It was also common practice by even professional installers to run the service line through garden hose and cable tie it to either brake lines or petrol lines.
At the time I worked in a full service station and some of the installs you would see would make your hair curl. Ex-Forklift tanks were popular. AFL valves were only just starting to appear in newer installs. Most cars were filled up inside the boot and had to be bleed off to find 80% Some of these bleed valves bleed off into the boot space. There was no requirement to have a safety shut off valve in the engine bay only on the tank.

So could this Troopy be that old?


It's old enough that it was installed before VIC came into line with the rest of the country.
BUT the way the system is meant to work is that these sorts of the things are meant to be picked up during servicing or other work on the vehicle and be bought up to the current standard.
VIC has been doing it properly for over 15 years now............


If its a 1 owner car - and the previous owner was cheap enough to install it himself - do you really think his going to splurge out and pay someone for an oil change? :P



Kind of highlights why my self and a some of the other gas fitters that use this site are so against people handing info on doing back yard gas repairs.................... But we got the typical responses from users and Admin just pretended it wasn't happening.

On slight up note (I guess) I got an other bad install through today, At least this time the install was done in NSW and not VIC.
I just didn't have my camera handy today for the pics,
But basic run down is tank is hard against the top of the tow bar, Tow bar was a genuine item fitted when the car was new, (before the tank was) and is a one owner car.

Copper service line run from tray to chassis with no vibration/damper coils is the line.

Half way along the chassis it is then joined to flex line, AS1425 says joins in service line must be kept to minimum joins needed to fit service line. I can run a complete copper line in a ute like that with only no joins at all, only fitting at each end. We can however make repairs to the service by cutting out and added in sections, So this item is really me just being picky. But the section of copper line still needs replacing due to other issues.

Service line is jammed in and partly crushed by the rear most Cab mount.

Service line passes through the front drivers side wheel arch with no form of protection fitted.

And lastly the clamping bands around the tank are so far towards the ends of the tank that they are sitting where the tank starts to curve around to the end surface. Basicly the mount is too wide for the tank being used.

This ute carries an almost $1000 repair bill, all due to an installer being to lazy to do the job properly.

 

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Mon May 16, 2011 9:12 pm 
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i think its good your letting people now what a bad install looks like and how serious it is, my dad had a mate whose car caught fire a few years ago due to a badly fitted gas system,cant remember how it happend i think he just turned it from petrol to gas and it went bang as he was driving, it wouldnt be a very nice experience at all

 

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Mon May 16, 2011 10:41 pm 
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tickford_6 wrote:
Kind of highlights why my self and a some of the other gas fitters that use this site are so against people handing info on doing back yard gas repairs.................... But we got the typical responses from users and Admin just pretended it wasn't happening.



i'm sure if you put your insurance saw how dodgy something one done they wouldn't cover you - same with if you do your own electrical wiring at home without a licence...

 

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Mon May 16, 2011 11:01 pm 
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tickford_6 wrote:
Half way along the chassis it is then joined to flex line
Do you think they simply ran out of copper line ?? Poor planning ?? Previous repair ??
I'd think it'd be cheaper and quicker to go with the std - less flare joins, etc to prepare - flex is pretty expensive (plus fittings) IIRC compared to copper.
tickford_6 wrote:
This ute carries an almost $1000 repair bill, all due to an installer being to lazy to do the job properly.
I suppose the original job wouldn't have taken too much longer (if at all) if it was done properly.

 

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Tue May 17, 2011 11:51 am 
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snap0964 wrote:
tickford_6 wrote:
Half way along the chassis it is then joined to flex line
Do you think they simply ran out of copper line ?? Poor planning ?? Previous repair ??
I'd think it'd be cheaper and quicker to go with the std - less flare joins, etc to prepare - flex is pretty expensive (plus fittings) IIRC compared to copper.

It could be any of those.
I'm not worried about it in any case as it could be a repair, and the join isn't dangerous. But combined with the other stuff it makes for a very lazy and untidy looking install.

snap0964 wrote:
tickford_6 wrote:
This ute carries an almost $1000 repair bill, all due to an installer being to lazy to do the job properly.
I suppose the original job wouldn't have taken too much longer (if at all) if it was done properly.


It would have added maybe 30mins to the job to do it right the first time.
Unfortunately for my customer it means I have to remove the tank and mount, the serivce line and tow bar and start again.

In big cities there is so much competition that to get prices low enough to get the job, you either have to loose money or take short cuts. Which is as much the consumers fault as it is the instalers.

 

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Tue May 17, 2011 4:37 pm 
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Yeah, talking to a few workshops around here over the last few years, there seems to be more and quicker money to be made doing just rego checks and basic services (oil changes, etc).

And not only that, an LPG conversion car ties up workshop space and personnel for a no of days, taking them off jobs like the above.

 

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Thu May 19, 2011 11:20 pm 
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tickford_6 wrote:

In big cities there is so much competition that to get prices low enough to get the job, you either have to loose money or take short cuts. Which is as much the consumers fault as it is the instalers.


Probably the reason/blame for a lot of the poor workmanship getting around these days. It's nice to see an installer taking notes & posting this up, and taking pride in doing the job right.

Cheers

ToranaGuy

 

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Fri May 20, 2011 8:29 pm 
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ToranaGuy wrote:
tickford_6 wrote:

In big cities there is so much competition that to get prices low enough to get the job, you either have to loose money or take short cuts. Which is as much the consumers fault as it is the instalers.


Probably the reason/blame for a lot of the poor workmanship getting around these days. It's nice to see an installer taking notes & posting this up, and taking pride in doing the job right.

Cheers

ToranaGuy



I started a conversion on a Mitsubishi Express van today, Got the camera out so I could show my work and neat and tidy and most of all legal and compliant install looks like.

 

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Mon May 23, 2011 10:04 pm 
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This tank was removed from a VS ute.
By luck I had an old tank that was the same make and model, We had our tank inspected and dated and fitted the new valve from the junk tank.

You'll see who ever fitted this tank doesn't know how to use a welder or how to set one up properly.
They managed to weld the stone shield and mounting bands to the tank in 4 places.
On one of them, He heated the band to the point of welding through it into the tank.
I had to use a cold chisel and hammer to remove the bands.

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Mon May 23, 2011 10:48 pm 
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tickford_6 wrote:
I started a conversion on a Mitsubishi Express van today, Got the camera out so I could show my work and neat and tidy and most of all legal and compliant install looks like.


Here is some of the Express van.

Landi converter with gas lock fitted. The support bracket is made from a the mount that comes with the lock and some flat bar that has been cut drilled and bent, the two are then positioned, market and oxy welded on both side of the lap joint. I prefer Oxy welding on such a small part as it gives far greater control (compared to MIG) and therefore a neater weld.
Image

A serries of shots of fitting the mixer ring.
The kit comes with a mixer that is meant to be clamped into the rubber hose from the filter housing. I don't like that mounting position as it sit the mixer to far away from the carby/manifold.
Some measuring showed the mixer was a good it in the steel pipe. The pipe was cut and small resonator box removed, I then put some 10mm long cut along the pipe at the cut edge to give me something clamp. I used 'Toyota black' engine sealer ont he pipe and mixer to be sure of a gas tight fit and then clamped the mixer in place.
The pipe to the resonator box was cut and crimped down in a vice, this was again Oxy welded.
(The resi box fouled on the mixer)
The whole thing was cleaned primed and painted in matt black.

You'll also see the converter mounted to the rear of the engine compartment. The Kit comes with a braket to mount the converter under the car. I didn't like that as 1: the vapour line would have been over a 1m long, and 2: it makes it a pain to tune. My way is easy to tune and the vapour line is under 0.5m, (shorter then the average Vapour line on a falcon conversion)
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The customer wanted ALOT of gas, this meant the only place to fit the tank was in the back.
The Black hose going to the floor houses the service line and the wiring for the level gauge and the gas lock. The other Black hose houses the fill line. You'll see I've used Pinch-weld where I ran a hole saw through one of the inner panels.
The third photo shows that removal of the tail light give easy access to the back of the filler
The filler does not vent from the black hose through to atmosphere, it is sealed at the filler end and basically an extension of the valve box. The hight of the filler allows (as per AS1425) any LPG leakage to vent down hill through the valve box and vent to atmosphere through the other hose through a fitting in the floor. This vent is on the opposite side the exhaust system.
There was probably more time spent on the filler mounting/venting system then any other single part of the install. Key point to me were compliance with AS1425, easy access to the fittings, comfortable filling position and looking neat and tidy.
Image
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Sorry no photos of the service line mounting, as it run past the petrol tank and a photo just wouldn't show anything.
I'll add though, that AS1425 states line must be mounted with plastic or metal clips (NOT CABLE TIES) at no greater then 600mm spacing. I use rubber lined steel 'P' clamps spaced at 300mm.
I also fitted new spark plugs.
The job cost my customer $3200 Before rebate.

This van also had a seized mechanical advance in the dizzy, I removed the dizzy and repaired this.
There was a split in the vac hose to the brake booster which I repaired and the carby had its Idle speed and mixture adjusted as well as the Choke speed (high speed idle to some people)
This cost $210

 

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Tue May 24, 2011 12:25 am 
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So what was the story of the VS tank welds ??
I first looked at the pics without reading and thought welding had been done on the bands in situ.
I take it the welding had been done with the stoneguard in place over the top??

Pretty good effort :P Nothing helps a tank's strength like adding pitting to the walls - a few years, some corrosion - works wonders.
I guess the tank would fail it's next 10 yr tank test on that ??

With the express install, yes, I wouldn't like the converter underneath.
Bit of a pain I guess to run the convoluted tube between panels.
I'm not keen on panel fillers, but I guess the petrol flap is mid vehicle on Expresses ???

I'm doing portions on my EF XR6 wagon, just done the LPG filler - there are subtle differences in the filler wells compared to my EL wagon. Luckily my installer could still get an integrated filler (and will thoroughly inspect my work - so don't cane me too much :evil: ).
Otherwise, I'd be making do with a panel filler.

 

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Tue May 24, 2011 1:39 am 
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Even the best looking install can be bad.... I had an injected vapor gas system put on my BA a couple of years ago and it’s never run right, coughs it’s guts out in every gear at a rev range of 2700 to 3000. It’s ok if you power through, but when you just hold it anywhere in that range in any gear or it starts to labor it chugs its guts out. Any ideas? It’s been back to the installer sooo many times and now they are saying it’s just a problem BA’s have… and that there is nothing that can be done… It’s a manual ute if that makes any difference. Oh and last time they had it they took the air intake pipe off and when they put it back on pinched the rubber seal into the throttle body so it’s been sucking dirt directly into the motor for about 12 months. :(
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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Tue May 24, 2011 2:43 am 
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tickford_6, I really do love the fact that there are people out there like yourself who go to great effort to get the job done right. Especially with gas..makes a huge difference not only to the safety aspect of it but how well it works too, I'm sure.
Side note; my dad has an Express van on gas, it's done around 280,000km and it runs well. I've seen a few driving around that sound/look terrible, but if they're done properly and looked after, they go pretty well.

 

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 Post subject: Re: Bad LPG installs.
Posted: Tue May 24, 2011 10:25 am 
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snap0964 wrote:
So what was the story of the VS tank welds ??
I first looked at the pics without reading and thought welding had been done on the bands in situ.
I take it the welding had been done with the stoneguard in place over the top??

Pretty good effort :P Nothing helps a tank's strength like adding pitting to the walls - a few years, some corrosion - works wonders.
I guess the tank would fail it's next 10 yr tank test on that ??

With the express install, yes, I wouldn't like the converter underneath.
Bit of a pain I guess to run the convoluted tube between panels.
I'm not keen on panel fillers, but I guess the petrol flap is mid vehicle on Expresses ???

I'm doing portions on my EF XR6 wagon, just done the LPG filler - there are subtle differences in the filler wells compared to my EL wagon. Luckily my installer could still get an integrated filler (and will thoroughly inspect my work - so don't cane me too much :evil: ).
Otherwise, I'd be making do with a panel filler.




Yeah I don't like panel filler either, Porblem is there is no filler for that van to fit behind filler door.
Some times, like you said, you just have to make do.



The VS tank was a case of the installer fitting the tank and welding the shield on after.
That in it's self is bad enough, This guy tried to do it with a welder hat was set far to high and he had no welding ability.
The install was only 6months old, I had it in far an inspection/cert for rego purposes and failed it.
It's discusting as it's very obvious and the guy who did would have been well aware of what he did.

The tank has had the threads and seal surfaces destroid to make sure it can't be used.

 

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