The Truth Behind Indian Made Gas Tanks

The Truth Behind Indian Made Gas Tanks

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So the word on the street has It that the new Indian gas tanks are great replacement parts for those who are either missing a tank or for those replacing a damaged tank.

I'm sure most of you have probably noticed Indian gas tanks all over eBay or Google images at some point during your parts search.

There is a lot of controversy around these tanks and today I would like to uncover truth behind the new Indian made gas tanks.

Lets get to it...

 

Triumph Gas Tank Listing - eBay

eBay listing from an Indian gas tank seller located in India

 

Most Indian gas tank sellers on eBay always seem to put their spammy company or username over the images making them stand out like a sore thumb.

Indian based sellers have just about flooded eBay with there gas tanks and other various replacement parts.

 

Million dollar question... are the tanks any good?

 

A couple years back I started to notice a big influx of gas tanks from sellers coming out of India on eBay.

Most photos of the new Indian gas tanks appear to be of quality,  just like an original but for half the price of a dented or damaged original tank.

I once contemplated about purchasing a new gas tank for my BSA Lightning, but after reading reviews on forums like www.britbike.com or www.triumphrat.net I quickly came to the conclusion that the Indian made tanks were not of the quality they portrayed to be.

 

Feedback

Based on feedback and what I read online (and been told by my customers personally) that the new Indian made gas tanks are simply a "lump of coal".

I have heard stories that some Indian tanks that where purchased where an exact reproduction.

The quality was spot on but none of the mounting holes lined up anywhere therefore making the tank useless without serious modification - who wants to put up with that?

I have also been told that not all Indian gas tank manufacturers are the same.

The word has it that not all Indian gas tank manufactures are the same on eBay. However, most of them (despite them being different sellers) get them from one manufacturer based out of the Middle East.

 

Borat Dancing GIF

Borat and his buddies dancing

Although no one really knows where these gas tanks are manufactured, many have thrown out the possibility that they could be manufactured in Afghanistan, Pakistan or even Kazakhstan.

Be on the look out

 

When searching for a used gas tank be on the lookout for these Indian made gas tanks as one can trick you into thinking you were buying an original.

Indian gas tanks are typically sold as new replacement parts but many of them slip under the radar and are sold as original gas tanks when they should not be!

 

How to spot Indian tanks

 

You can usually identify an Indian gas tank compared to an original tank by some of the following key details.

Over the years Indian gas tank manufacturers have gotten smart on the way they produce their gas tanks simply because all the negative feedback they have received.

The 3 points as shown below are typical of Indian gas tanks but it's very possible they could have changed there manufacturing process.

#1 Red Gas Tank Liner

 

    Red Gas Tank Liner

    Most Indian gas tanks will have a red tank liner sealer that is typically applied on the inside and sometimes the underside of the gas tank.

    The sealer is to prevent rust and also line the inside of the tank to stop corrosion from occurring from today's ethanol fuel.

    I firmly believe the reason why the sealer is used because there might be small pinholes within the seams of the tank.

     #2 Rust - Corrosion

     Gas Tank Rust

     

    Any new gas tank that would be manufactured today would have some type of coating to preserve and prevent corrosion.

    Indian gas tanks have unusually hi levels of rust deposits despite it being a new gas tank. I believe that has to do with the quality control and the way that they preserve the gas tank during storage and shipping.

    #3 The Shape

     BSA Gas Tank Shape

    As most people always say there's nothing better than OEM.

    Indian made gas tanks when compared to an original tank of the same type you will find that the finish, and the shape will not be consistent as an original gas tank.

    Now I understand that it is very difficult to reproduce a gas tank not using the same stampings or molding from the factory. So I do have to give the Indian manufactures some type of credit by creating a gas tank basically from scratch or from an original tank.

     

    "To sum it up..."

     

    To sum it up I wouldn't recommend purchasing an Indian made gas tank to anyone.

    As previously stated, I do give the Indian manufacturers some credit for at least trying to make a quality product.

    However, most of these gas tanks are not usable therefore its very disappointing because I personally feel like sellers are selling junk and they deliberately know that.

    If you purchased or own a new Indian made gas tank, please feel free to leave use a comment below as we would love to hear your personal feedback on it.

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    Thanks for reading today!


    45 comments

    • Phil Auldridge

      I couldn’t agree more (Indian tanks are crap). I purchased one supposedly for my year-specific Ariel Square 4. Upon arrival, first, the exterior of the tank looked like it had been pounded into shape by someone sitting on a dirt floor with a kitchen spoon. Nevertheless, I forged ahead with mine. As others have mentioned, there was a dull, rust red coating inside, but after sitting on my shelf for about a year prior to fitment, an amazing amount of rust accumulated inside the tank.. I mean big flakes!
      I cleaned as best I could and soaked with Evaporust, but clearly this tank isn’t going to last.
      A stock fuel cap would NOT fit the opening on the tank without some judicious use of a file and grinder.
      Then, none of the tank mounting holes were correct.. positioning was off by a whopping 2 inches on my stock frame.. And, of course, the threads were standard SAE threads, and NOT British threads as original. The threads for the petcock were rusted upon arrival, and looked like they had been cut with a 10 year old tap that had worn out years ago.
      I’m currently using the tank temporarily while my original OEM tank is going through a very expensive process of welding up rust spots, rechroming, then painting and pinstriping. It will probably be a good $1,500 when done, but then I will know I have the genuine article that will last my lifetime. Sadly, I just have to add the cost of the Indian tank to the overall restoration. I couldn’t even in all good conscience sell it on eBay, in spite of the fact that it looks great in the pictures!

    • Graham Campbell

      I have been after a bsa 1970 Royal Star petrol tank for along time and still want one if anyone can help. They keep advertising A50 but they They have either no holes for knee pads or one hole for peardrop large badges which should be two holes.
      Plus petrol top which is hinged mine’s push and twist fit I have also held back after hearing bad stories.

    • Rob

      To follow up, having read more of the other comments; Not all UK made parts have been top notch either. I have purchased parts over the years from various well known suppliers & some have been poorly made with little attention to detail; mismatched parts, sloppy welds etc. I have sometimes accepted these as the parts were otherwise unobtanium, or beyond my pocket. (If you saw my bikes you would not think I was a fussy customer!) I just think some pride in the product is needed, even if it is an uninteresting but essential bracket. If Indian tanks are being sold by middlemen/ third parties, they only want the sale, the quick cash. They are likely ignorant of & have no interest in product quality & if the market dries up they move onto another dodgy deal rather than thinking long-term & developing a good relationship with both their customers & the manufacturers. Clearly the experience of some (such as Sluggo), has been that you can get good products from some Indian suppliers; the small number with the right attitude. As an alternative I have bought parts from Eastern Europe & they have been extremely well made, exact copies of rare BSA & other parts but they are not cheap – just reasonably priced when I think of the hours of work involved in me trying to fabricate them in the shed…

    • Rob

      I got an “Indian made” polished aluminium copy of the OEM chromed steel BSA Goldstar 4 gall tank for about £200. It fits OK. One of the fuel tap bosses isn’t straight (not a problem) but other than that it looks pretty good & doesn’t leak. I think it has been ally soldered rather than welded but has held together. I can see why all these sellers have jumped on the classic parts bandwagon – it pays the bills. Except ignorance of the quality required means that a lot of tanks & parts will remain unsold when word gets round & their investment wasted. It’s been the case for very many years with “pattern” parts; copies of copies = poor parts. Let alone tanks possibly made by scaling up photos rather than copying exactly from an original, so that all the various distortions of dimensions means a tank will not fit correctly or even at all. Interesting that they may not be made in India at all. Crazy for the manufacturers to not obtain originals & make good copies. Surely it costs the same to make an accurate copy as an inaccurate one!

    • Peter Smith

      Ages I obtained two BSA M20 tanks for customers and they were spot on, no internal liner, no internal rust and fitted perfectly. However a club member purchased a chromed tank for his Gold Star on ebay. Grind marks through the chrome were very visible, waves on the top were ideal for a surfboard rider. He gave them a negative. They requested it be removed and he could have another tank or his money refunded. He fell for it, removed the negative and never heard from them again. The tank is a worthless piece of junk. Frankly I think that there might be several different manufacturers over there. If they can put it over you, they will. There chrome is pathetic and I have refused buy any of their chromed parts. Seen new chromed parts in poor condition when they first arrived in Australia.

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