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Fuel Gauge Etching!


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As many of us share the same pain of having a fouled up fuel gauge!  I had previously shared that I had a friend make me a few stencils so I could R&R my original fuel gauge in my 27/27 Buick.  Right now I am using a different style gauge that I got in a box of extra parts from the previous owner’s widow we purchased the car from.

 

While the fuel gauge I am using works, it’s not what I plan on using much longer.  So, tonight I had a few minutes to spare and thought I’d play with the stencil and give it a go at etching on a paint can lid and see what happened!

 

In my opinion for about 2-3 minutes of actual etch time and a quick blast from a spray bomb, I personally think it came out great!!!

 

Again, this is my first attempt at DIY Etching using table salt, distilled white vinegar, a splash of hot water, Q-Tips, and a 12V 1.5amp trickle charger!

 

I will continue to practice till I perfect the process before doing the final etching on my actual fuel gauge.

 

Just wanted to share this with you fine folks, I apologize for the quick shaky video but just wanted to share it before I cleaned it up for the evening!

 

I hope you all enjoy....

 

ps. I will do an actual step by step video and write up and share it for anyone who wants to try this themselves when I etch my actual fuel gauge.

BE0C4E8F-3FA2-481C-A6DF-2FD487107B6B.jpeg

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  • 2 months later...
On 12/10/2019 at 5:56 PM, Crazyfamily said:

As many of us share the same pain of having a fouled up fuel gauge!  I had previously shared that I had a friend make me a few stencils so I could R&R my original fuel gauge in my 27/27 Buick.  Right now I am using a different style gauge that I got in a box of extra parts from the previous owner’s widow we purchased the car from.

 

While the fuel gauge I am using works, it’s not what I plan on using much longer.  So, tonight I had a few minutes to spare and thought I’d play with the stencil and give it a go at etching on a paint can lid and see what happened!

 

In my opinion for about 2-3 minutes of actual etch time and a quick blast from a spray bomb, I personally think it came out great!!!

 

Again, this is my first attempt at DIY Etching using table salt, distilled white vinegar, a splash of hot water, Q-Tips, and a 12V 1.5amp trickle charger!

 

I will continue to practice till I perfect the process before doing the final etching on my actual fuel gauge.

 

Just wanted to share this with you fine folks, I apologize for the quick shaky video but just wanted to share it before I cleaned it up for the evening!

 

I hope you all enjoy....

 

ps. I will do an actual step by step video and write up and share it for anyone who wants to try this themselves when I etch my actual fuel gauge.

BE0C4E8F-3FA2-481C-A6DF-2FD487107B6B.jpeg


 

the three small rectangles above the stencil where I was testing how long to hold the Q tip on the metal to get the right depth of the etch.  It doesn’t take long to deep into the metal I can assure you that, and the amperage if the power supply, or in my case the battery charger, will slow down or speed up the depth of the etch!

 

i am going to do this same process on a friend’s small aluminum vial that she wears on a nceklace w her recently deceased daughter’s cremation remains in. She wants her daughter’s name and DOB and DOD on it, I am happy to do it for her after showing her my test etch on the paint can lid shown above.

 

ill be honest with you, I have not etched my fuel gauge face yet as I am a bit nervous since they are made of unobtainium and I only get one shot at doing it!

 

i am going to do some practicing this weekend and might get enough nerve to go ahead and do the fuel gauge, if and when I do I’ll be sure to post the video and pictures as others have asked!

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  • 4 weeks later...

Ok update....

 

I did a little thing last night!  I finally got the nerve up to etch my actual fuel gauge face/dial. Prior to last night, as you can see earlier in this thread, I had etched a paint can lid.

 

Honestly, what was preventing from doing the actual fuel gauge was......FEAR!!

 

I was scared to burn through the fuel gauge, I was scared that my wallet would sustain a big hit if I had to purchase a replacement, and I let fear get in the way of me messing it up and not having the original fuel gauge and frankly my pride got in the way!

 

With life as we know it changing before I’m out eyes, our every day life that is, with the now pandemic Coronavirus (Covid-19).  Wonder what happened to Covid-1 through Covid-18??  Something to think about huh?!  I kid I kid....

 

Back on topic, I followed the same process for etching that I did above on the paint can lid however this time, at the suggestion of my oldest rug rat, I did 5 trial runs on the bottom of a soda can as it was the closest thing I had on hand that had approximately the same thickness and finish of my actual fuel gauge.  I thought that was a fantastic idea!!

 

Using the bottom of a soda can allowed me to determine how long I should do the etch.  I did 5 etchings a one minute intervals, 1 min, 2 min, 3 min and so on till I capped it at 5 minutes.  Honestly for my little 1.5 amp 6 or 12 volt (I USED 12 VOLT!!!) there was not much difference between 3, 4, or 5 minutes!  I wanted to do two things:

 

•Not etch right though the material I was etching.

 

•Etch long enough to have a recessed area that I could then lay some paint into the letters.  I have not decided which paint I will use but most likely it will be the black KBS Coatings moisture cured paint that I used on the outside of my newly built fuel tank.  (The black-ish color in the letters now is a light coat of black primer I used just so the letters showed up easily for the camera and a little primer never hurts!). 
 

i still need to clean up the paint from the edges of the gauge dial, even though the edge is really not visible when the gauge is installed it’s more of a pride thing as we all know. If I don’t clean it up and  know it’s there it will drive me crazy.  I do have adult ADD!! 🤓. I also need to paint the needle itself but I thought I’d update everyone....

 

So without further ado:

 

 

 

 

44222F69-181C-4951-8C82-AE016E442769.jpeg

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Congratulations!

 That is the way to go as the painted on numerals and letters with "fuel resistant" coatings have already turned bad on the ones I did.

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1 hour ago, dibarlaw said:

Congratulations!

 That is the way to go as the painted on numerals and letters with "fuel resistant" coatings have already turned bad on the ones I did.


yeah that’s what I’ve seen from others unfortunately!  Etching is easy and I’d think most of us have everything needed in their homes right now and don’t have to purchase anything other than making up a stencil!! 
 

Im glad you like it, I’m looking forward to cleaning it up a little more and finishing it up....get rid of the remaining black primer and lay in the correct KBS Coating and finish it up with a red paint on the needle!

 

ill share more pictures when it’s finished up 

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On 3/12/2020 at 10:08 AM, dibarlaw said:

Congratulations!

 That is the way to go as the painted on numerals and letters with "fuel resistant" coatings have already turned bad on the ones I did.


yeah that’s what I’ve seen from others unfortunately!  Etching is easy and I’d think most of us have everything needed in their homes right now and don’t have to purchase anything other than making up a stencil!! 
 

Im glad you like it, I’m looking forward to cleaning it up a little more and finishing it up....get rid of the remaining black primer and lay in the correct KBS Coating and finish it up with a red paint on the needle!

 

ill share more pictures when it’s finished up...

 

in the meantime:

 

which red do you guys think would be best for the pointer needle?

 

lets say left to right is 1-4 and the one under those four will be #5?

 

 

30A31675-7771-4F56-BEAF-3A6402009625.jpeg

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2 hours ago, dibarlaw said:

I vote for #3. The brighter the better. The original that I saw was black. I prefer to be able to SEE it. That is why I did mine in red.


The original was black?

 

i didn’t realize that, I’ve only seen everyone doing them in red!  Hmmm, maybe I should keep it black then! I’ll try to decide this week and get it finished up and installed!

 

ill share final pics when I have it finished up !  I am def going to lay in black KBS Coatings into the etching and am thinking I’ll go w the #3 Red, although I do like #5 at the bottom!!!

 

we will see.....

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Update:

 

ok I haven’t painted the pointer yet however I did lay in the EBS Coatings Paint and I am happy w the results.  I do not think this will ever cause an issue again with the letters coming off since the etching is deep and it allowed quite a bit of the paint to adhere.

 

I hope everyone likes the results and I am planning on painting the pointer tomorrow!

 

If anyone has any questions or would like guidance on doing this project please don’t not hesitate to reach out to me and I will be more than happy to walk you through it the best I can!

 

Etching really is a VERY easy project!!

 

 

C798808E-3B91-4421-B0B6-56562B8C0905.jpeg

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