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So my tank had a tiny bit of rust, not much rust but enough to go out of my way and get rid of it. So I bought 4 gallons of vinegar and let it sit in the tank overnight. The next morning I poured it out and went inside to fill some jugs so that I can flush the rest of the vinegar and the rust bits that were left. But within those couple minutes of me filling up water jugs, the rust was back. I didn't have a chance to to flush the remaining vinegar or rust bits.

I heard of spraying wd-40 in it to prevent flash rust but I would like to year from you guys on the forums of your experience of removing rust from tanks and preventing flash rust.

I would prefer to sticking to vinegar as it is about 10$ for 4 gallons. I will not be using this motorcycle until after winter but will be working on the bike.
 

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Gone.
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For removing most rust I usually use kerosene and a length of stainless steel chain I bought a few years ago. Shake, rattle, and roll. There's no flash rusting and I get a very good arm workout too. <smirk>

I did a Honda gas tank about a month or so ago with mild phosphoric acid as an experiment, flushed with water, then swished around kerosene as a rinse. No flash rust.

I have another Honda being dropped off tomorrow that I'm going to try the vinegar on and I might try swishing it out with WD-40, as I have a gallon of it handy and I know it's not going to hurt anything. I'll let you know how it works, but it might take a few days before I actually get to cleaning the tank.
 

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Challenged Mechanic
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I've used muriatic acid to clean a rusted tank, then flushed it with water. Immediately after pouring the water out I poured in denatured alcohol.The alcohol will absorb the water and go with it when you pour it out. Fill with fuel right away or line. I've lined a tank before, but my feeling now is to just clean rust, then leave bare, unless you have pinhole leaks that a liner might cure. Tanks on new bikes generally have bare metal inside surfaces.

Cheers,

Mike
 

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On The Road Again!
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After de-rusting, slosh some Phosphoric Acid around inside
the tank and let it sit for a couple of days.
Rust is Iron Oxide. Phosphoric acid converts the rust into
Iron Phosphate, which is a protective coating.
 
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