Rodeo long range fuel tank

Submitted: Tuesday, Mar 23, 2004 at 22:53
ThreadID: 11503 Views:3929 Replies:11 FollowUps:8
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decided to post this seperately to "myfourbys" post from yesterday, as it is a bit different .
I,ve a '98 Rodeo dual cab 4X4, ex NSW police paddy wagon, fitted with a Brown Davis long range tank, which I was told held 112 litres. I had to drain it and drop it out due to a broken pick up pipe while we were at William Creek last year. I found a crack around the front mounting bracket, which wasnt too bad as the tank is double thickness there, and I had it welded up properly at Coober Pedy when we got there.
As I had to drain the tank,I decided to check its capacity,so I knew how much was still in it when the fuel warning light came on. On filling it up again I found it was only holding 90 litres, and not the 112 litres I had been told to expect. I checked it twice, as the descrepency was considerable and we were doing lots of long range travel away from supplies, and its essential to know how much fuel you have.
I got the phone number of Brown Davis, phoned them up and told the owner my story about the 90 litres. You wouldnt believe the crap he fed me. He recons there is someone in NSW who was supplying tanks to the NSW police who decided to save himself some money and instead of supplying the proper Brown Davis tanks, he was making them himself, selling them to the police, for the same cost as the BD units and pocketing more money, as he could make them cheaper than he could buy the BD units. When I said " well this tank has a Brown Davis stamped badge and number on it" he said that this person had gone to the trouble of making up his own stamp to punch onto the metal badge etc.
Can you imagine getting this crap down the long distance phone line ?? If he had told me that some of their tanks only held 90 litres I probably would have been disapointed , but believed him, but he immediately disowned the tank, and kept on with the bulsxxt.
Of course, he wouldnt tell me who it was that had been copying his tanks and implied that they were looking at what they could do about it.
I wonder if anyone else has ever measured their BD tanks capacity properly, especially those in Rodeos. Or has anyone come across the same story?
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Reply By: Member - Toonfish - Tuesday, Mar 23, 2004 at 23:27

Tuesday, Mar 23, 2004 at 23:27
i seem to remember nissan getting into hot water over this as they stated the infamous gu patrol had a certain litre stated on all brochures but was much less when tested and they had to put an apology or that in the papers.

noted a similair thing on my navara i come up 5-6 litres less than my owners manula states every time?

please explain .

could land you in trouble if you were banking on x amount of reserve capacity in the middle of no where due to poor calculations.

Brown Davis need a good P R rep i think
AnswerID: 51696

Reply By: Member - StevenL - Tuesday, Mar 23, 2004 at 23:41

Tuesday, Mar 23, 2004 at 23:41
Now that could be interesting!

When my Prado is delivered I expect that the dealer will probably deliver it with abou 500ml of fuel. When I fill the 180l tank at the nearest servo I'll see how much it takes!

AnswerID: 51702

Follow Up By: Roachie - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 15:25

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 15:25
Hey Steven,
I know a good bank've probably paid cash for the car, but you'll need a loan to fill the tanks...LOLOLOL

FollowupID: 313523

Reply By: Redjack - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 00:06

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 00:06
Sails, how big is the standard tank. 90 litres doesn't seem that much bigger.
AnswerID: 51707

Follow Up By: Leroy - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 11:52

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 11:52
63l me fink.

FollowupID: 313483

Reply By: Wayne (NSW) - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 00:33

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 00:33
I might be able to help here. Back in 98 I was fitting the Police Rodeo with tanks and bullbars.
What I do need to know is
What brand of bull bar is on the front
Is it a petrol or Diesel
Has it got any other aftermarket stickers on it

AnswerID: 51712

Follow Up By: sails - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 22:51

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 22:51
Hi Wayne,
my bullbar is a steel TJM fitted with a low mounted Warn winch.Its a 2.6 L petrol engine in the new (then )body shape. The BD badge is on the rear of the tank close to the drain hole. Im not aware of any other aftermarket stickers.
FollowupID: 313614

Follow Up By: Wayne (NSW) - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 23:17

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 23:17
The Rodeo you decribed was more than likly used in the outer suburbs of Sydney. If fog lights were fitted than Lithgow would be the area. Can't say much more about the vehicle except what I said in the other post, and that I most likley fitted the bull bar, winch, driving lights, tank, and rear step bar, also tow bar if fitted.
FollowupID: 313625

Reply By: myfourby - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 09:08

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 09:08
Hi Sails,
My experience with Brown Davis hasn't as yet been a bad one. When I had my tank fitted - the fuel guage wasnt working properly as the float got stuck on something apparently - so it was always showing empty. Brown Davis (somewhat reluctantly) fixed the installation problem - and its been working fine ever since.

They told me that the capacity of my tank was 140 litres (2.8 diesel hilux)- and...... one day - I (accidently) ran it dry -(rolling into a servo thank god!) - Filled it up - and sure enough - it holds exactly 140 litres. - So no complaints there.

I've heard alot of negative feedback regarding Brown Davis - but nothing like you're describing!

AnswerID: 51728

Reply By: Arkay - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 09:22

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 09:22
I have recently had a so-called 60 litre "long distance" auxilliary tank fitted to my 4WD. I know the exact capacity of the standard tank as I did a closely watched about 100,000 km with it before deciding to add the extra tank. and upgrade the rear suspension. The best I can get out of the 60 litre aux tank before the transfer pump runs dry is about 44 litres. Don't know what I would get if I took out the drain plug, but my guess would be not much. Very disappointing $1300 worth, but I guess better than 2 x 20 litre jerry cans in the cabin. Now the minimum range I get towing a camper trailer under harsh conditions is 700km (I hope!).
AnswerID: 51732

Follow Up By: Willem - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 23:12

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 23:12
Arkay....I carry 6 jerries lying flat inside the cabin when on long hauls. Have done so for years. They are packed securely and cannot move about. So all up I can carry 230 litres of fuel which gives me 1150km range on a good day. My BD 110 lt fuel tank cost $850 fitted.
FollowupID: 313623

Reply By: Dennis (Brisbane) - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 11:52

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 11:52
My ex NSW Police Rodeo (96 model. 2.6 petrol) is fitted with an Out of Town long range tank, company advertises it as 118 litres.

The most I have ever put in it is 92 litres, but I have never ran it dry.

Fuel warning light starts flickering on and off after I have used ABOUT 70 litres, stays on most of the time after ABOUT 80 litres.
AnswerID: 51738

Follow Up By: Leroy - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 11:56

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 11:56
I had a long range automotive tank in my rodeo and it held 110 from memory and it was exactly that. low fuel light came on when there was around 25l left and the guage worked fairly well. Stayed full for the first 200ks of the tank the dropped gradually from there.

FollowupID: 313484

Reply By: Member - Peter D M - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 16:38

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 16:38
sails, my 2000 dual cab rodeo has a 'long ranger" advertised as 118 lt this tank came in my 98 vehicle and i moved it when i bought my new one. max hold is 108 lt. from 104 starts cutting out on corners. changed fuel pump when moved, same in both vehicles. fuel light comes on with 25 lt remaining. fuel gauge doesnt start dropping until 50lt used. mine petrol maybe diesel pickups are different.
regards peter
AnswerID: 51790

Reply By: Wayne (NSW) - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 17:40

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 17:40
Just a little info on tanks.
Brown Davis tanks were 110lt.
They were one of two suppliers for the Police Rodeos.
The sender unit was taken out of the OE tank and replaced back into the BD tank at tha same hight from the bottom of the tank so that when the tank was empty the gauge on the dash would read empty. The warning light would also show when the tank was near empty.
The changes.
The sending unit (a length of stiff wire with a float on the end of it) in the tank went through a certian arc, full to empty. The BD tank being higher,and the arc of the sending unit being the same, the fuel gauge on the dash would read empty when empty but would stay on full for some time.
On the diesel Rodeo a tube was screwed into the top of the tank and sat about 6mm from the bottom of the tank. This was done so that it did not pick up rubbish from the bottom of the tank. This 6mm can vary so that the amont of fuel drawn from the tank can very a bit.
On the petrol Rodeo the high pressure pump had to be droped down to sit on the bottom of the tank. This ment cutting the bracket that held the pump and adding a piece of steel to make the bracket longer. On the end of the pump was a filter and the low fuel warning light sender unit.
On the bottom of the tank there is a swell pot, this holds the fuel around the pick up so when the fuel level dropes and moves around the bottom of the tank, fuel is not drained away from the pick up or pump.
Because the filler pipe had to go into the side of the BD tank, and not on the top as in the OE tank, it was hard to fill the tank to the top. A air lock was common if the vehicle was leaning towards the filler pipe.
The brackets had a second layer of steel to stop them cracking but as you know this did not always work.
Brown Davis did start putting there stamp on the tanks as well as the date of manufactor. To check the amount of fuel that the tank holds, the drain plug at the bottom near side of the tank would have to be removed and all the fuel removed. Replace the plug and fill the tank, rocking the vehicle as the tank becomes full. This should remove the air lock if any.
I have fitted a lot of Rodeo tanks with very little problems, the Police would not put up with dodgy stuff.
As for Brown Davis, well you spoke to them and I would say you got a tipical answer to a problem, and they have not improved.
The extra fuel and the fact that a 8000lb Warn winch come with the Rodeo I still think it is a good buy.
AnswerID: 51805

Reply By: Willem - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 23:06

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 23:06
Not a Rodeo answer but I too have a LR Brown Davies tank and it is stated as holding 110lt. I have filled it with 108 lts so it is pretty close. I figure that the last 10 litres would be unuseable so I calculate it at 100 litres when travelling.

I have heard some bad stories about communication with Brown Davies company people but when I made enquiries they were very polite. The tank was installed by a tank supplier in Adelaide. Haven't had any problems with it.

AnswerID: 51866

Follow Up By: Wayne (NSW) - Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 23:25

Wednesday, Mar 24, 2004 at 23:25
I also had no problem with the fitting of the tank although a small weep will come and go. Not worth the effort to remove the tank and fix it.
The 170lt sure comes in handy. With the main tank of 90lt the value of the Cruiser increases every time I fill up. The most I have put in was just on $300 worth.
FollowupID: 313626

Reply By: sails - Thursday, Mar 25, 2004 at 00:08

Thursday, Mar 25, 2004 at 00:08
Hi Wayne,
thanks for that info. I concur with most of what you say, with a couple of deviations regarding the inner workings of the pump mount and sender units.
I believe the original OE pump and mounting bracket was used, and it sat on the bottom of the tank, inside a swell pot as you called it. The pump assembly is mounted in the rear right corner and it is fitted into a 70mm lowered area on that corner .THere was no extension to the mounting arm, and the low fuel warning light was not on the pump assembly. I replaced the pump with a Goss unit when in Nhulunbuy, $230.00(due to the price of OE spares, $850.00,I think, which included the whole mounting bracket!!). I never removed the sender unit, but I assume the low fuel sensor was on it. As you suggest, my fuel gauge didnt move for the first 250 K's, and when the car was stationary and I was draining the tank, it had 5 litres left in it when the light came on.
There is a 300mm wide by 360 mm long by about 40mm high addition on top of the tank in the area of the filler pipe junction, and there is an air line that goes from there to the polution control circular thing on the passangers side of the engine bay. The filler pipe comes in above the chassis rail and meets the tank at the top of the main side body, running into the top side weld, and the filler breather pipe is welded in at the same spot, so there should be no problem with an air lock developing in that area,There is also an extension from the top of the tank which extends out over the prop shaft, but I've not bothered with measuring it tonight
The Brown Davis badge is marked as 02 98 B5 (i think, difficult to make out the last letter )
THe reason the front mount cracked was because where it was welded to the double skin , it was only done on the top and the two sides,leaving the bottom open and so it began cracking across thedouble skin from the lower end of each side weld, No problem since it was done properly.
As you say, the police would not put up with anything dodgy, so it was puzzlying as to why the owner of BD should go into this big defensive rap with the accusations he was making.And it was the owner of the company I was talking to, cant remember his name, but that was a question I put to him.
Did you ever test the capacity of the tanks you were fitting? Basically we believe what we are told!
THe extra fuel and the winch made it a good buy and the vehicle performed very well for us considering where we went and the load we carried. Only other problem that developed of any consequence was we bent the rear chassis, and where it bent there are two holes in the inner wall which are used to hold cable clamps. The holes are on both rails of the chassis and it bent in the same place on both sides, about 8-10 inches ahead of the bump stop. I see the factory has added a gussett to that area on later vehicles of that generation model.
I wonder if you might have fitted my vehicle??
Cheers Wayne, thanks for the input
AnswerID: 51878

Follow Up By: Wayne (NSW) - Thursday, Mar 25, 2004 at 00:35

Thursday, Mar 25, 2004 at 00:35
I wish I had not killed of so many brain cells back in the 70s. On the latter tanks they did recess the pump location. The 300mmx360mm part you are talking about is the expansion chamber. That is where all the fumes go on a hot day. The pipe from there goes to the carbon cannester where the fumes get filtered before excaping to the air.
The numbers02 98 B5. Made in Feburary 1998 by a welder who name started with B. We never checked the amount of fuel that went in the tanks, didn't have time, when the Rodoes arrived from the dealer we only had a limited time for the turn around. A vehicle like yours, by myself, would set up two in a day. The tank alone took 50 min start to finish. I would have to have a look at it to confirm if it was one of mine.
FollowupID: 313641

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