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TOPIC: Get the varnish out

Get the varnish out 12 Feb 2020 10:15 #819090

  • 9er rider
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I'm wanting to clean an old tank but I dont want to destroy the paint Everyone has the best cleaners in mind and methods but no one has any theory in getting all the varnish out to use water based cleaners such as metal rescue, I have 3 tanks in various stages of yuck
76 kz 900 1075 76 kz 900 a4 78 kz 1000 ltd

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Get the varnish out 12 Feb 2020 10:42 #819091

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That's a tough one. Since varnish is petroleum based, a water based product probably won't cut it. That's pretty hard to do, but can be done. Perhaps some creative masking and taping will help. My suggestion would be to use cheap lacquer thinner and be extremely careful not to get any on the paint.

Of course masking it will hide any spills until after you remove the masking / taping only to to find a big ruined splotch right smack dab in the middle of the paint you were trying to save. :S
1981 Kawasaki Kz1000K1
Located in the Saint Louis, Missouri Area.

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Get the varnish out 12 Feb 2020 11:37 #819093

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I have plugs
76 kz 900 1075 76 kz 900 a4 78 kz 1000 ltd

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Get the varnish out 12 Feb 2020 12:11 #819098

  • martin_csr
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A solvent strong enough to dissolve dried fuel & varnish is probably going to attack the paint.
I would probably try filling the tank with fresh fuel & add some sort of fuel additive such as Seafoam, then let it sit.

To seal the tank for treating rust I made block-off plates for the petcock & fuel switch openings, and used a freeze/test plug for the fuel filler opening. I put teflon tape on the bolt threads & used nylon washers and cut sections of sheet rubber to seal the block-off plates. The tank was already painted before treating the rust & was unscathed.



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Last edit: by martin_csr.

Get the varnish out 12 Feb 2020 14:30 #819110

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9er rider wrote: I have plugs


Did someone mention plugs? The expanding rubber plug martin mentioned above works great on the fill hole. Use the screws with o-rings to seal the cap hinge attachements.



The other holes need block off plates.



I mentioned the masking in order to keep from spilling any chemicals on the paint. My paint was already hosed before I removed the kreme inside it with MEK. I stripped it to replace the rattle can paint improvements it had when I rescued the bike. My main reason for kreme removal (AKA Carb jet sealer) was because I got tired of cleaning carb jets.
1981 Kawasaki Kz1000K1
Located in the Saint Louis, Missouri Area.
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Last edit: by old_kaw. Reason: typo's

Get the varnish out 13 Feb 2020 06:39 #819153

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Ive got the tank plugs . I just want to know what the best way to clean out the Varnish was the question. Snow is asshole deep to a tall Indian, But I have a warm shop. I could about imagine this is why people dont get a good seal with tank liners. New tank and abs fenders are cheep enough but not the Paint, I dont do tank liner. I just want to preclean before I derust. I have a pressure washer but not a hotsey. If I find out maybe I should stay true to the cause and not tell anyone?
  • 76 kz 900 1075 76 kz 900 a4 78 kz 1000 ltd

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    Last edit: by 9er rider.

    Get the varnish out 13 Feb 2020 07:04 #819154

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    I have a can of Berrymans so that is where I would start.
    shop.advanceautoparts.com/p/berryman-che...AvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds
    I would guess that the heavy varnish is in the bottom of the tank and if you are very careful you don't need to fill the tank up just try a cup or 2
    Run a test on a lacquered up float bowl,

    Note: you still need to keep it off of your paint
    78 KZ1000 A2A
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    Last edit: by bluej58.

    Get the varnish out 13 Feb 2020 07:41 #819157

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    My plan of attack is starting with 2 ltd tanks that Ive collected from barn finds because they are plentiful on ebay cheep! And observe with a bore scope, then progress to nicer tanks. Experiments will be expensive for knowledge.
    76 kz 900 1075 76 kz 900 a4 78 kz 1000 ltd

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    Get the varnish out 13 Feb 2020 08:52 #819167

    • slmjim+Z1BEBE
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    Yamaha Carb Cleaner Dip (Yamaha part# ACC-CARBC-LE-NR) is a water-based carb cleaner that has done wonders for us in an ultrasonic tank, removing very thick, hard varnish 1 mm to 2 mm thick.

    We were skeptical when our favorite parts guy suggested it, but it really works like a champ. We've never tried it in a fuel tank, but it might work pretty well with the tank plugged and agitated periodically. It is to be cut 1/3 dip/water per instructions.

    Good Ridin'
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    Get the varnish out 13 Feb 2020 09:07 #819169

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    Thats what I thought too!! Any ways its where I want to start. Its just finding it in stock to buy. I only get paid once month, Timing is everything
    76 kz 900 1075 76 kz 900 a4 78 kz 1000 ltd

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    Get the varnish out 14 Feb 2020 09:30 #819292

    • old_kaw
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    One thing you may want to remember, varnish is a variation of "paint". Anything that will remove varnish is also capable of removing paint. The Yamaha carb dip slimjim posted looks to be a great alternative over the traditional nasty carb dip from days gone by. I used to come home from work stinking from that crap after rebuilding carbs all day.

    All normal carbs dip is water soluble, if not, it would not hose off with water.

    A quick google search shows numerous sources.. or your local yammy dealer. It also pops with people that just love it over the traditional nasty carb dip, but warn that it will remove paint, yet is user friendly on rubber parts.
    1981 Kawasaki Kz1000K1
    Located in the Saint Louis, Missouri Area.

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    Last edit: by old_kaw. Reason: hmmmmm

    Get the varnish out 16 Feb 2020 05:03 #819422

    • Shankkole
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    I strap them in a baby swing on low after filling 80% with lacquer thinner ,tape the whole tank (exterior) and clean tape residue off with rubbing alcohol when done a couple of 4 hour trips in the swing is a good start. its not a water safe deal but it works. I also use aircraft paint stripper diluted with acetone for deep gunk.
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