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Discussion Starter #1
As the title suggests, this thread will document my process and progress of installing an Aux fuel tank.

The instructions say you should be able to install the tank in 6-8 hours, but I'm guessing that's for someone who already knows the steps. I'm planning to take my time and investigate/understand each step so bear with me, this may take 2-3 weeks to finish.

I bought a Long Range Automotive (LRA) US Spec 115L Aux tank (part # TLCFJRUISERA - US) through Cruiser Brothers in Washington. At the time of this writing the tanks are not shown on their website, but they are an authorized importer and distributor for LRA and if you email them they will send you a quote. Attached below is their tank catalog. So far my experience with Cruiser Brothers through the purchasing process has been excellent.

Of the two 'off-the-shelf' options available here in the States, I decided on the LRA tank based on fuel capacity, cost, and long term history and reputation of the manufacturer. That's not saying anything negative about either of the companies, just my impression of who has the edge.

That being said, let's start the install.....:clap:
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Shipping.....

The tanks are shipped regular ground freight on a pallet. To keep the freight cost down they will ship it to the closest depot or business with truck high dock access. You can get it shipped to your door but the cost goes up significantly. For reference, it cost me right at $200 in shipping coast-to-coast from Stockton, CA to Greenville, SC.

The tank was reasonably well wrapped in bubble wrap and heavy-duty shrink wrap. The corners of the main support bracket had poked through the plastic and were slightly scuffed, but nothing was bent or damaged and the paint could be repaired with 2 squirts from a rattle-can.

After unwrapping and inspecting everything there was no other damage and all the parts listed in the parts list were present.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Instructions....

The instructions that came with the tank are pretty sparse (to put it nicely), (see images below) which leads me to one of 2 conclusions:
1) LRA would rather people didn't try to install these on their own, OR
2) Having worked very closely with a few Australians over the years they probably just said "It's a tin can, a few hoses, and a sensor, why don't ya quit whinging, grow a pair, and figure it out ya stupid c*&%!!!!" :rofl::rofl::rofl:

Either way, I'll do my best to fill in the blanks in this thread.
 

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Not for sale to California residents, but ships from Stockton, California :mecry:
 

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Looking forward to the pics/details.
 

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It is frustrating that they offer a $1625 fuel tank, but the installation instructions are so vague (no photos, no illustrations, just "cut the fuel line and use clamps to re-assemble" vague text).


Not a problem for customers that live near Cruiser Brothers, but for folks on the other side of the US who have to do it themselves, it would be nice for their instructions to be a little bit more clear.

I look forward to your documentation of the installation. With the photos that you will post in this thread it will help me to decide whether to proceed with same for my vehicle!

At this point I'm leaning toward getting a replacement main tank (30 gallons), rather than adding an aux tank (better weight distribution, easier to fill and use). Then, if I ever need a 1000 mile range I can always add the 30 gal aux tank later. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It is frustrating that they offer a $1625 fuel tank, but the installation instructions are so vague (no photos, no illustrations, just "cut the fuel line and use clamps to re-assemble" vague text).


Not a problem for customers that live near Cruiser Brothers, but for folks on the other side of the US who have to do it themselves, it would be nice for their instructions to be a little bit more clear.

I look forward to your documentation of the installation. With the photos that you will post in this thread it will help me to decide whether to proceed with same for my vehicle!

At this point I'm leaning toward getting a replacement main tank (30 gallons), rather than adding an aux tank (better weight distribution, easier to fill and use). Then, if I ever need a 1000 mile range I can always add the 30 gal aux tank later. :)
To illustrate your point, I just added the instructions above. They are horrible.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
If I wasn't working 50 hrs a week, taking care of a 3mo old baby girl, building a garage and helping renovate my sister in law's new house, I might swing by and help out....

I've been toying with the idea of an aux fuel tank as well.
Been there, I can feel your exhaustion from here!:zzz: Feel free to PM me if you want to drop by and take a look sometime.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Electrical.....1

The LRA instructions essentially say "Find a location to put your switch, use switched power from the fuse panel, and then finish the wiring."

The instructions on the APEXUS switch packaging and a wiring diagram by Cruiser Brothers are a little more helpful (shown below). For the basic functions, if you've ever wired lights with a relay, this is just as easy.

There are 5 wires on the switch (per the instructions):
1) RED - 12 volt switched power - usually get this from the interior fuse panel.
2) BLACK - Ground - there are several grounding locations behind/under the dash, pick one that is close to your chosen switch location.
3) WHITE - Aux tank 0-90 Ohm sending unit - this came pre-installed in the tank as expected.
4) YELLOW - 12 volt Power for the fuel pump. The fuel pump instructions say that power should be fused at 3-5amps, but no fuse holder was supplied.
5) WHITE/BLACK - unused.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Electrical.....2 - Optional Switch function??

The normal function of the switch, from what I can tell from the instructions, is that when you press it the pump will turn on and run until the tank is empty or until you press the button again. I believe the intent is that you would press the button when your low fuel light comes on and then turn it off when the main tank is full. However, if you forget to turn the pump off it would run until the main tank overflowed back into the aux tank and then continue to run until you'd burned enough to empty the aux tank. This would mean the pump would potentially run a lot more than necessary. I might be paranoid, but this seems like it might lead premature failure on the pump.

The intriguing part here is the 5th WHITE/BLACK wire. The APEXUS instructions list this wire as "0-5 volt Main Fuel Tank Sender" and then hints at an 'automatic mode' in the testing instructions that would turn the pump on and off automatically based on the fill level of both tanks. I've asked Cruiser Brothers if they have any more information on how this might work but haven't heard anything yet (its been less than a day). The FJ main tank I'm pretty sure has a resistive 0-90 Ohm sending unit so it wouldn't work directly with for this wire, but I'm wondering if there is way to trick it using a relay and step down winding maybe using the low fuel light as a trigger..... I'll be doing a little bench testing to see if I can figure this out.

Wondering if anyone else has any experience with this switch that could shed some light on it?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
thanks for posting those instructions, what you got with the aux tank is actually 3x longer than the one that comes with the main tank (and yours has pictures!)

Main tank fitting instructions attached.
Wow, you'd think the main tank replacement would have a few more instructions than that.
 

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Hopefully, it is short because it is a really simple process. But because it is so vague I feel I need to do more research before deciding to proceed.
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
I didn't get a response from Cruiser Brothers on how the optional main tank switch connection works (White/Black wire listed in Post #11 and 12 above) so I contacted APEXUS directly. They were very helpful and sent me an email back the next day with a ton of information. The White/Black wire is supposed to connect to the circuit that drives the fill level gauge on the dash. Most fill level gauges are 0 - 5 V analog gauges.

After a little investigation I was able to locate the circuit on page 245 of the Electrical manual (1st picture below). The Violet/White wire comes from the tank sending unit up to the main gauge cluster to connector E13(A). E13(A) is the connector on the top left corner of the main gauge cluster looking at it from the driver's seat. The second picture below shows where the wire is located on the connector. This picture is looking down on the connector after removing the driver's glove box.

I've checked the voltage on this wire several times over the last couple of days and confirmed that the voltage varies with the main tank fuel level and the measurements plot a linear slope between 0 - 5 for empty to full.

EDIT: I was wrong on these measurements. The voltage actually varies from 7V at empty to 0V at full.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
APEXUS also sent me the programming instructions for the switch, so I'll be able to put the switch in automatic mode and set the levels on the main tank reading when I want the aux tank pump to turn on and off. This will basically make it a set-it and forget-it type setup where I won't have to worry about when to turn the pump on and off. It also has audible alarms to let you know when it is working and whether it has lost signal with one of the tanks. There's a lot of features on this little switch.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Now that I know where to land all the wires and how to make the switch function, I should be able to finish the electrical part of the install tomorrow. I plan to mount the switch to the left of the main gauge cluster just above the dimmer switch. It'll be easy to access, still visible through the steering wheel, and close to the power and signal wires it needs to access.
 

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WOW, that's one heck of a switch (and so small, to have all that in it, too!).

This is sounding as good as what Izalusky (Project Snow Leopard) had developed for his FJ, but miniaturized.

My interest is peaking. Thanks for posting this thread C Ray!

Question: have you decided how you are going to run the wire from the Aux tank gauge to the switch on the dash?



N
 

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Discussion Starter #20
WOW, that's one heck of a switch (and so small, to have all that in it, too!).

This is sounding as good as what Izalusky (Project Snow Leopard) had developed for his FJ, but miniaturized.

My interest is peaking. Thanks for posting this thread C Ray!

Question: have you decided how you are going to run the wire from the Aux tank gauge to the switch on the dash?



N

Yeah, I was one of the people hoping Izalusky was actually going to bring his creation to production. It was a bummer when it fizzled out.

I'm running the pump power and tank sending unit wires under the door sill -> behind the rear interior panels -> through the floor grommet near the jack. It's a short hop from there to the pump and tank. Also, the wires coming off the switch are only 20awg, which is too small to run the pump directly, since the pump is 10 ft from the switch and is supposed to be fused at 5amp. So I'm running the switch wire to a relay which has a fused 14awg wire which will be the wire I actually run back to the pump. This will also protect the switch, which I'd be concerned about anyway, but I'm more so since there are no direct distributors for APEXUS here in the US and no competitive products that I can find.
 
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