Fuel cells come in three basic varieties: The bladder cell is essentially a large rubber bag fitted inside a steel box.
The bladder is designed to absorb the movement of the fuel sloshing with the vehicle in motion. Bladder-type cells are most often used on race vehicles where they can effectively absorb the energy of impact or violent movements.
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Our experience has shown that any of these types can be made to work on a noncompetition rig with a few precautions to note. Mounting should take into account the movement and chassis flexing that is inherent in an off-road vehicle.
Dry Hydrogen Fuel Cell Installation MANUAL FOR DRY FUEL CELLS
We have seen some of the thinner, basic aluminum fuel cells crack and begin leaking. Long-term flex in this application can fatigue the corners and edges until they weaken and crack. Fuel cells can be purchased with or without foam inside. Foam baffles fuel sloshing and can prevent an explosion due to violent movement. The foam can absorb the energy of an explosion and help starve a fuel fire of oxygen.
Despite its vital function, the foam inside a cell usually occupies only about 2 to 3 percent of the total volume. In general, fuel cells are not DOT-approved and may not be legal for use on the street.
Additionally, a fuel cell will usually not pass a visual test at a smog station. Check your local laws to find out the details for your area. Plumbing The CellOnce you've got the fuel cell mounted in your vehicle, you'll need to address plumbing it to your carburetor or fuel-injection system.
The most common way to do this is to run an external in-line electrical fuel pump, although some fuel cell companies sell complete pump assemblies that can fit inside the cell. Depending on the fuel cell, there are also variations in the filler opening, and various necks and extensions are available to accommodate location of the fill point on the vehicle. The fuel pickup location can be critical for an off-road vehicle that sees a lot of extreme changes in vehicle attitude.
In general, a cell with a dropped sump in the rear works well, or you may consider a cell that uses multiple pickup points inside the cell. Some fuel cells can also accept a fuel-sending unit if you desire to keep an eye on fuel consumption.
After some careful measuring I determined a 16 gallon unit same size as my stock tank from Summit Racing would fit perfectly. This is a foam filled cell to prevent fuel slosh that has a GM sending unit already installed. The cell will be mounted to the top of the rear frame support and to the top of the frame just behind the differential with a custom made bracket. Once two pieces were now one, I drilled the remaining holes for the straps, sanded the bracket, and primed and painted it the same color as the frame.
Once the paint had dried I centered and clamped the bracket to the frame and drilled two holes through each end and bolted the bracket to frame. Now it was time to install the cell, or so I thought. The problem I encountered was that the bracket for the rear brake line was in the way, the cell with its brackets installed would not clear it.
Now before you think you are finished and attempt to install the bed back on the frame, you will need to cut a five inch section out of the bed support that runs directly above the fuel cell sending unit if your truck has a fleetside bed. This modification is required in order the clear the sender on top of the fuel cell. On my truck, I decided to fabricate a C-channel to weld into the opening