Let’s Talk Fuel Lines!

Aug 23, 2011 2 Comments by

On all of my nitro and gasoline-powered airplanes, I use zip ties to secure my fuel lines going from the fuel tank to both the carburetor and the muffler. When routing lines within your airplane, make sure that they can move freely and are not bent in any odd fashion. After all, you need to make sure that fuel can move slightly from the tank to the carburetor, and also, from the vent line in the tank to the vent on the exterior of the model. However, make sure that these lines do not come into contact with any hot item like the engine’s muffler. Rather, fasten a line if you think it may touch the muffler.

Also, if you are flying a gasoline-powered airplane, make sure that you change all fuel lines yearly. In the past, I have put airplanes aside for a year or so, but I always perform a pre-flight check on my airframes before taking them to the flying field.

In this routine check, I go over the fuel lines. On occasion, I have found that gasoline lines harden, and in fact, the clunk line can harden. I have heard horror stories where people have experienced an engine failure while the airplane was inverted and they lost that particular model. The cause- A hardened clunk line that did not fall freely within the tank. As a result, fuel could not reach the clunk and the airplane’s engine quit at a rather unexpected time. Simply said, make sure this doesn’t happen to you!

Featured News, John Glezellis

About the author

A world-class RC aerobatic pilot, he has flown in and won many national competitions including the XFC and the Don Lowe Masters. His columns “Let’s Talk Giant Scale” in Model Airplane News and “Aerobatics Made Easy” in Electric Flight address in detail all you need to know to improve your piloting and building skills.

2 Responses to “Let’s Talk Fuel Lines!”

  1. fhhuber says:

    Tygon doesn’t ever belong INSIDE the fuel tank. Try the black tubing rated for gasoline. Its more flexible and does not harden.

    Put the correct size tubing on your fitting or use the right size fitting for the tube. Your T in the picture is a good example of THIS IS WRONG.

  2. nick says:

    what type of black tubing?

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