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288 Gal Propane Tank RF Build

post #1 of 55
Thread Starter 

I am picking up my salvaged tank this weekend.  its a 288 gal tank, its roughly 8' long and almost 31" in diameter.  I currently looking for a trailer to mount this mini sub to.  i know will have questions as this build goes on.  I have read other threads about different builds and i like how everyone is so eager tot help one another.   Cheers



post #2 of 55
Here's a calculator to use for a Reverse Flow build....

post #3 of 55
Thread Starter 

Thanks Dave,  i have used it already i have some questions later about the math and the numbers i got.   


My first question for y'all is:  when it comes to trailers are twin axle better then a single rated for 3600LBS?  my tank weights roughly 700-750lbs.    and according to Dave's calculator i need to build a 36"x36"x36" FB. my first instinct is go bigger on the trailer just to be sure you have room and it can take the weight.  i plan to build a storage box for wood, add a tool box for utensils and rubs and such.   a large work surface for prep.

post #4 of 55
Thread Starter 

Alright y'all the tank has soaked and been flushed.  i didn't know it would stink that bad.   I had to give my neighbor a card and gift card for the nasty smell.    any who   the bottom drain is installed and on Saturday i hope to cut the door and do a burn to make sure everything is gone from the tank.   My next question is Hinges.   Im planning on cutting the door but leaving the corners connected until i get the hinges attached that way the door stays nice and square.   Should i get custom Hinges or will Heavy Duty Hinges from Lowes/Home Depot Work well?


post #5 of 55
post #6 of 55
Thread Starter 

Any idea how long i should do a first burn inside the tank to kill off any nasty smells?

post #7 of 55
Thread Starter 

I filled the tank with water, Dawn Soap, and Bleach for the smell for 2 days  Drained  refilled with more soap, and then 15# of baking Soda  Let that sit for a few a day and Drained again.  Do think this was long enough to purge and hazardous chess out?   when I cut the tank i am going to fill it again with water.  Any suggestions will be great  i hope to cut the door this friday 1/9/15.  then do a burn out of the tank.

post #8 of 55

You should be good to go now, if the tank is running over with water, all the gas has been displaced.

post #9 of 55
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by LenDecaturAL View Post

You should be good to go now, if the tank is running over with water, all the gas has been displaced.

Thanks for advice!
post #10 of 55

Here is my 2 cents

I work at a natural gas compressor station, and we deal with gas in pipes that need cut and welded very often. feel free to PM me with any questions

Here is a quote from my build of what i did just a few days ago(the next one I will just fill with water then drain and cut)


On the topic of propane tank flush witch is always a hot topic around here I will describe my process


1-  release any leftover gas

2 - remove valve from tank (be careful there may be some pressure left so remove SLOWLY)

3- I "purged the" tank with compressed air (this should be done with great caution because you are adding air to the tank and creating a gas to air mixture that is explosive)

4-  I added about a quart of Super Clean degreaser and filled tank with water and allowed to overflow for a few minutes

5- Drained the tank and refilled with water, and then an immediate drain of the water, after this step it still had a heavy smell of propane, but all of the gas is gone, the smell is ethyl mercaptan an oderant  added to the gas so you and I can smell it.

ethyl mercaptan is very hard to get rid of

6- then I began to cut the tank


this entire process took me about an hour, from a tank with a little gas in it to torching the top off

post #11 of 55

Blackbark I just cut a 125 gallon up.  I filled with water twice with dawn dish soap.  After that I refilled and cut.  I didn't have any issues.  I found that a sawsaz worked the best for cutting it.  However if your using that cut as a final cut go really slow.  I was able to just cut mine because I knew I would be cutting it smaller than what I would have.  

post #12 of 55
Thread Starter 
Curtis did u have any problems with getting rid of the smell
post #13 of 55
I used some chemicals but low and behold they didn't work. I actually started working on with the smell still being there. It didn't go away until today when I built a fire inside of it. I've read a lot that there's no way to get rid of the smell until you burn a good fire in it. I had a pretty good fire going in it and it now doesn't even have the faintest smell in it other than burnt wood.. I would say don't want your money on chemicals just get a hot fire going and it will go away
post #14 of 55

Can't wait to see this progress.... !  :popcorn  :beercheer:

post #15 of 55
Thread Starter 
so I have marked out my cuts.

5'5 1/2" across
21" tall
6" down from the top

post #16 of 55

On your way  keep us posted 



post #17 of 55

I just bookmarked this page for future reference. I'm looking for a tank that size, maybe a touch smaller, to build me another smoker. Good luck with your build.

post #18 of 55

Good luck to you RH



post #19 of 55
Thread Starter 
Good Luck RH

So this tank is 3/8" thick. so its not a quick cut. This afternoon i was able to Fully cut through the top of the door. I welded the Hinges on for support cause this door is massive. I also cut a small part of the bottom and welded a brace to support when i finish cutting tomorrow. More Photos to come later.
post #20 of 55
Thread Starter 

So the door is cut and a third hinge is added for support.  I did a burn and the smell in the tank is gone   woohoo.






And I only had one cutting disc shatter on me


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