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9/9/12 8:00pm - Original Message: 'PLASTIC fuel lines???'
persico Gold Member
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Long Valley, NJ - USA

Vette(s):
1972 454 Coupe, 4 speed, Targa Blue with blue interior, luggage rack

Joined: 3/21/2007
Posts: 254
Guys,

While working under the car this weekend (again!) I noticed a previous owner has replaced the steel fuel lines form the tank to the fuel pump  (supply and return) with some type of flexible black plastic tubing.  It's been on the car for the 6 years I've owned it with no leaks (but most of this time the car has been under restoration in the garage).  At the fuel pump the plastic line is crimped onto a section of steel tubing that has the rubber gas line on the other end that connects to the fuel pump.  I am considering replacing this setup with the original steel or stainless steel lines. 
1) Anyone have any experience with this plastic tubing? Is it safe?
2) If I should need to replace the lines, has anyone ever replaced the lines to the fuel tank, how hard is it getting it through the frame?  
3) Any recommendations on where to purchase them. 

As always thanks for the assist!


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Mario
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9/10/12 10:07am - Reply: 'Re: PLASTIC fuel lines???'
DaveM Lifetime Member
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Flanders, NJ - USA

Vette(s):
1982 Black, ZZ4, Hooker Side Pipes, 3.55 Rear, Rebuilt & upgraded 700R4, All new suspension, brakes, & new Charcoal interior.

Joined: 1/27/2004
Posts: 2530
I've never seen it before, but off hand I would not keep it that way! Who knows what type of plastic it is, it may react badly to the gasoline, it can very well be a fire hazard. I use as little rubber hose as I can (only) from regulator (on frame) to the engine because of the relative motion, and that is only about a 3" long piece. Steel up to carb.
Good luck,
Dave


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9/10/12 11:56am - Reply: 'Re: PLASTIC fuel lines???'
Adams' Apple Lifetime Member
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Duncanville, TX - USA

Vette(s):
#1-1974 L-48 4spd Cp Med Red Metallic/Black deluxe int w/AC/tilt/tele./p/w-p/b/ Am-Fm/map light National/Regional/Chapter NCRS "Top Flight" #2-1985 Bright Red/Carmine Cp.L-98/auto Member: NCRS, NCRS Texas, Corvette Legends of Texas

Joined: 11/8/2003
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A lot of late model cars use a plastic-like fuel line, in certain sections, but never the entire length of the car. I'm surprised you haven't had some kind of problems already. I would definitely NOT keep it.....just too scary for me. It could be damaged from heat, a minor "bump" in cold weather...heck, even a rock or other foreign object thrown up could puncture it.

Replacing the fuel line with the body on the frame ain't an easy job....in may, in fact, be dang near impossible, if you plan to run it the way it was originally. Cutting/splicing in a new steel line isn't a good idea, either, since the splices can leak.
I saw a guy one time get a loooong roll of 5/16" fuel line, and run it thru the front, to the rear, a little at a time, all the while bending/tweaking it to get it thru all of the obstacles along the way. Of course, it looked nothing like factory, but it was one piece....it got the job done, with some aggravation thrown in just for grins.


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Joel Adams
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9/10/12 12:39pm - Reply: 'Re: PLASTIC fuel lines???'
persico Gold Member
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Long Valley, NJ - USA

Vette(s):
1972 454 Coupe, 4 speed, Targa Blue with blue interior, luggage rack

Joined: 3/21/2007
Posts: 254
Thanks Dave and Joel, did some additional research since my first post and I understand running new hard lines without removing the body can be done but it ain't easy!  So I've been looking into alternatives.  Many speak of using braided flex lines but complain of a gas smell (becuase they have rubber linings).  Then there are hard lines from companies like Aeroquip and/or Earls that look like rubber - perhaps that is what is on my car? I said plastic but I really don't know.  It's not like the clear or white plastic tubing used for air or fish tanks, its a rigid but flexible hard black tube and looks like it's joined with compression fittings and unions similar to what you would do with Aeroquip.  I'm going to take a closer look and see if I can find any markings.  Also it's been on the car for the 6 years I've had it with gas in it with no leaks (thats why I am looking into the fuel lines in the first place - wanted to purge the system and get it ready for fresh gas).

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Mario
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9/11/12 11:43am - Reply: 'Re: PLASTIC fuel lines???'
Adams' Apple Lifetime Member
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Duncanville, TX - USA

Vette(s):
#1-1974 L-48 4spd Cp Med Red Metallic/Black deluxe int w/AC/tilt/tele./p/w-p/b/ Am-Fm/map light National/Regional/Chapter NCRS "Top Flight" #2-1985 Bright Red/Carmine Cp.L-98/auto Member: NCRS, NCRS Texas, Corvette Legends of Texas

Joined: 11/8/2003
Posts: 19454
Could be some type of hydraulic hose, possibly. It would be kewl to find out exactly what you have, if for no other reason than curiosity.

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Joel Adams
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"Money can't buy happiness -- but somehow it's more comforting to cry in a CORVETTE than in a Kia"
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 Forums -> C3 Fuel, Emission Control, and Exhaust Systems
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