Gas Tank Fuel Pump Access Panel

I wasted a half a day at the track when my fuel pump died. Well, next time I will be ready for it. I located and cut an access panel. I'll fabricate a cover that can be sealed around the edges and secured to the remaining floor.

Yes, the tanks come out easy. But at a race track, who wants to do that? I have a dead pump in there now, so after I finish the fab, I'll run a timed test to see how quickly I can do a swap.

I've thought about getting a piece of steel plate (0.03 thick the floor is) and trying to beat it into shape (the floor is not flat, it has raised and depressed areas). However, maybe a better solution is a trip to a salvage yard, lay the piece (I cut out) in place and cut out a section of a junk fox body, about 1 inch bigger (all around). That way I get the contour of the floor pan easily for a better fit.

I have not decided on how to secure the new plate to the floor. Short sheet metal screws are the easy way.

I visited Johnson's Mustang Friday. He had a Fox body that he had cut the rear driver's side out. This left the right side rear of the car intact with the section I wanted unmolested.

One of the guys whipped out his Sthil gas driven 13 inch diameter chop saw. 5 minutes later I had the section I wanted, ready for trimming and dressing. Using a nibbler I trimmed it to the proper shape. Now I'll clean and prep and paint before installation.

Here you can see the size difference in the cut out piece and the replacement after I have dressed it.

The floor is only 0.032 thick......

Thought of using nutserts. My concern would be, even with proper installation, that eventually I'll spin one. I'll have to look for one with enough of a locking key so not to have this happen.

Press nuts in a separate panel was another thought. As were press studs (in a separate panel that would be spot welded to the underside of the floor, having the studs pointing up thru the floor) so to avoid any "points" protruding below the floor, to avoid any chance of chafing the lines and wires.

Dzus would be a pain with all the holes for the wires and all and would not give me a flat surface due to the installation rivets. Maybe Dzus on the small weld plate? spot welded to the floor on the underside?

Done. Takes 15 minutes to swap the pump. That's including digging a new hose out of one of my parts boxes and scrounging for 2 fuel line hose clamps. I'll put some extra fuel line clips in my track box, check my old pumps for an operative one, and I'm good to go.

The pump came out real easy. No problems. Undo the panel, lay aside, blow the area clean, remove the fuel line clips and the power connector, tap the ring and remove. Rotate and lift up. Beats laying on my back with 120 pounds of fuel in the tank trying to wrestle with it.

I drilled holes and used small 1/4 screws. And to remove the sharp points I ground them down a bit. There is plenty of room between the lines and the floor.