Fuel Line Material - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old Apr 17th, 17, 04:41 AM Thread Starter
Jon
 
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Fuel Line Material

Hi,
I need to determine if my fuel lines are stainless steel, or aluminium, as I can't register the car with aluminium fuel lines.
I've tried using a magnet, but some stainless isn't very magnetic at all, so it didn't really tell me anything.
Anyone have any suggestions as to how I may determine which material they are?
Many thanks in advance!
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old Apr 17th, 17, 05:23 AM
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Re: Fuel Line Material

If there is a hidden spot you could just touch the line with a grinder to see if it sparks, that would tell you. Obviously, the SS will spark and the Al won't. The Al is softer than the SS so if you can devise some sort of scratch test. I would also think that an Al line would be a lot easier to bend than a SS line so if you could detach the line and try bending it in your hands that might give you an idea too. The magnet test isn't very reliable for testing SS as you don't know the makeup of the SS alloy and the chromium may mask the magnetic properties of the nickel and iron depending upon its concentration in the alloy.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old Apr 17th, 17, 05:26 AM
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Re: Fuel Line Material

Moved this thread from the issues with your website browser on the Camaros.net site problem forum to the tech section for best response.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old Apr 17th, 17, 09:32 AM
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Re: Fuel Line Material

304 stainless which most pre-bent lines are made from is non magnetic however, as 304 is bent it will become slightly magnetic. Try the magnet test again with a strong magnet.

Stainless has a shiny appearance, aluminum more of a light grey dull look unless someone polished them but still not look like stainless.

I've never used aluminum tubing but all the stainless and cunifer tubing I've used has the information printed on the tubing of what it is, try looking for that. Keep in mind it could be worn off in spots so check the whole length.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old Apr 18th, 17, 08:01 PM Thread Starter
Jon
 
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Re: Fuel Line Material

Thanks for the tips!
I'll have a snoop around for any identifying stamp in the line.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old Apr 19th, 17, 05:05 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Fuel Line Material

Hi ctcz28
The fuel lines are installed and full to fuel, so I can't grind anything at this stage. Thanks for the info on stainless steel composition re magnet test.
Is there a section I could "sacrifice" for a slight grind if I were to take the lines out for testing?
Thanks.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old Apr 19th, 17, 05:13 AM
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Re: Fuel Line Material

Simply scrape with a knife. If aluminum it will scrape metal off easy. If stainless it won't.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old Apr 19th, 17, 10:46 AM
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Re: Fuel Line Material

x2

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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old Apr 19th, 17, 06:35 PM
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Re: Fuel Line Material

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vega$69 View Post
Simply scrape with a knife. If aluminum it will scrape metal off easy. If stainless it won't.
Also a good test, and easy. I'd try this first.

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old Apr 19th, 17, 07:09 PM Thread Starter
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Great ideas! Thanks fellas!
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old Apr 19th, 17, 07:24 PM
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Re: Fuel Line Material

Quote:
Originally Posted by Heavychevy67 View Post
Hi ctcz28
The fuel lines are installed and full to fuel, so I can't grind anything at this stage. Thanks for the info on stainless steel composition re magnet test.
Is there a section I could "sacrifice" for a slight grind if I were to take the lines out for testing?
Thanks.
I'd probably remove the shortest section I could find (like the short section under the driver's seat on a '69 from the prop valve to the rear line connector, not sure what the lines look like under a '67) and test it, then put it back in or just replace it. Cutting and flaring lines isn't too hard and you can probably rent the flaring tools for free at an auto parts store. If you don't want to mess with cutting and flaring, buy a slightly longer tube with the flares and flare nuts already installed and put a few "S" curves in it to make it shorter overall so it will fit in the place of the piece you removed (will look a bit funky, so better hidden under the car).

Here's another approach. You're testing this in order to register the car. Unless you personaly don't want lines made out of Al and want to replace all the lines, I wouldn't worry about it. I'm assuming that you have to have the car inspected to get it registered and thus the issue. I'd take the car to get it registered and if you get pushback, I'd put it on the registration agency to prove beyond all reasonable doubt that the lines are Al and not stainless. If it's this difficult to determine the difference then how can they say its Al and not SS? If they pull out a magnet and if it doesn't attract to the lines that proves nothing. You could even take in some form of reference documentation stating that not all SS will attract a magnet like ferrous metal will if they don't believe you. Even if you test the lines and determine that the lines are SS, it's still your word against their charge that the lines are made of Al. What are you supposed to do, break out a grinder on the spot and generate some sparks? I bet they will let it pass.

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Dynatech, 17" VWW V45's 235/45, 275/40
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old Apr 19th, 17, 08:50 PM
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Re: Fuel Line Material

Actually the owner is responsible to prove the lines are not aluminum as part of the process.
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old Apr 20th, 17, 05:38 AM
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Re: Fuel Line Material

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vega$69 View Post
Actually the owner is responsible to prove the lines are not aluminum as part of the process.
If this is the case, then I'd find out what the registration agency requires in the form of proof. Do they want brand new (anything but Al) lines installed on the car with the manufacturer's label stickers still attached and the dated purchase receipts? How about taking it to a shop acceptable to the registration agency and get the shop to certify the lines?

'69 Z/28, Lemans Blue/White Stripes, DZ302, T56 Mag., 4.10
Dynatech, 17" VWW V45's 235/45, 275/40
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