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Old 01-11-2017, 08:04 AM   #1
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Dealing with Rust Under LP Tanks

Hi, I have a '16 FC. Removing the LP tanks, I noticed I had rust bubbles in the frame paint under both LP cylinders.

The cylinder bottoms were corroded, and the paint had bubbled in several areas on the frame. I treated it by scraping the paint, derusting with a brass brush, and prepping with emery paper. I reapplied some Airstream frame paint I'd gotten at Colonial Airstream. It matches perfectly.

Is there any way to prevent or reduce the rust that takes place?

I was either going to place the bottles on some kind of durable polymer stand-off, or obtain some material that I can place under the tanks so as to allow some give, as well as to promote drainage.

What do you more experienced guys use under your LP tanks?

Or is it just a periodic scrape and paint maintenance task?

Thanks!

Rich
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Old 01-11-2017, 08:14 AM   #2
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I have always used (on all my trailers) sections of 3/8" rubber fuel line hose, slit lengthwise and positioned on the bottom stand ring, to prevent rust and wear. It works very well. I typically used 3 sections, about 6" long each, positioned dependent upon frame/tank holder construction.
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Old 01-11-2017, 08:20 AM   #3
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Since new I lifted the tanks and sprayed CorrosionX on the steel plate under the tanks, and leave the excess there. Each time I take out a tank for refilling, I wipe up the area and spray it again. In our sixth year never any rust under or on the propane tanks.
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Old 01-11-2017, 08:28 AM   #4
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A tip that may be helpful re: Airstream touch up paint.

I bought a spray can of the "Pewter gray" (I think that was the name) years ago at Jackson Centre, and as with most AS stuff, it was pretty expensive. Also when I used it recently, I wasn't really impressed. Even though I gave the rattle can a good shaking, the paint seemed really thin and took a few coats to properly cover. As well, it seemed to take an inordinate time to dry.

Perhaps I had had it too long.

Anyway, recently I wanted to repaint all the hitch area and A frame at the same time I was repainting the Hensley hitch that I had removed in order to paint.

At a local hardware store here in Canada (Home Hardware) I found that they could custom mix rust paint for me. So I used my spray can to paint a piece of wood as a sample and took it to them to scan with their computer.

I only wanted a liter (quart) but it turned out that the 4L size was on sale, so I wound up with a gallon of the paint for almost the same price as I paid for the small spray can at JC !

The colour match seems perfect, and it appears to be holding up well. I decided to brush paint rather than spray to avoid all the masking and it looks fine.

I would guess that maybe places in the US such as ACE hardware probably have the ability to do the same thing if anyone is interested.

I divided the paint into four separate one liter cans and should now have a lifetime supply!
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Old 01-11-2017, 11:36 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dznf0g View Post
I have always used (on all my trailers) sections of 3/8" rubber fuel line hose, slit lengthwise and positioned on the bottom stand ring, to prevent rust and wear. It works very well. I typically used 3 sections, about 6" long each, positioned dependent upon frame/tank holder construction.


Thanks! Great idea.
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Old 01-11-2017, 12:13 PM   #6
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I removed the plate that holds the tanks, cleaned off rust and sprayed with a 3M undercoating product similar to LineX bed liner. Worked great.
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Old 01-11-2017, 02:59 PM   #7
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Rust under propane tanks and general rust treatment/ prevention

IMO nothing deals with and prevents rust better than POR 15. You can paint it right over rust (just brush off loose flakes) and when dry, it looks, feels, and performs like it was powder coated. If in an area that is exposed to sun light you must top coat with any other paint to protect from UV. POR15 makes numerous excellent paint products. I have used their 2 part (epoxy) product to refinish the tub/shower and bathroom sink in my 1968 Safari with excellent results. They also make a POR15 product that comes in a tube, the consistency of toothpaste. I used it on rust coming through the paint around the wheel wells of my 2002 Tahoe and it has arrested the expansion of the rust. You can find them on line at POR15.com. Check it out. Jim
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Old 01-11-2017, 03:51 PM   #8
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Just wanted to add that Menards will custom mix Rustoleum oil based paint for about $12 a quart. There is a blue/gray color on the paint chip brochure that was very, very close to the tongue color so I just went with that.

It is sold as: Rust-Oleum® Stops Rust® Mid Base Door Paint

Once we get the trailer back from winter storage I'll be applying it over the POR-15 coating I had to do to the rusty flaky battery box.
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Old 01-11-2017, 04:02 PM   #9
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Needing to refill my tanks I pulled them today. There was a bit of rust present. Hit the rust with a wire brush and a spray of black Rustoleum. It is out of site and generally out of mind being hidden under the tank cover so not concerned about the paint color.
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Old 01-11-2017, 08:31 PM   #10
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That rubber hose over the tank base edges sounds like a good idea.
Spray the hose insides with WD-40 or Silicone spray also.

Look after your equipment, it will look after you.
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Old 01-11-2017, 10:44 PM   #11
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After preparing and painting my bottle tray this past summer, I cut a piece of an old truck mudflap to fit in the bottom of the tray and also cut the appropriate matching holes into it. Works great, but I got to say I like Rich's fuel line fix too !
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Old 01-12-2017, 05:03 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by B4WEDI View Post
After preparing and painting my bottle tray this past summer, I cut a piece of an old truck mudflap to fit in the bottom of the tray and also cut the appropriate matching holes into it. Works great, but I got to say I like Rich's fuel line fix too !

Great idea.

Come to think, WalMart has a cheap rubber entry mat too. I might look at that this week.
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