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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter #1
Like a lot of folks on this forum I have been having problems with my gas gauge being erratic and undependable.
Reviewing this forum for solutions I discovered that I need to remove the sending unit from the gas tank and clean it up but I need a special tool to loosen up the large ring on the top of the tank. This tool is expensive and probably would only be used once by me so, searching the forum, I noticed several posts regarding making your own tool by using a piece of PVC pipe of a certain diameter that is impossible to get. Some of the posts recommended 6”, while some recommended something less. I looked at the tank and determined there was not sufficient room to place a PVC pipe ring around the tank ring while still mounted in the bike so, while sitting on my chair in the garage, I began looking around for a different solution.
I spotted a large COFFEE CAN sitting idle on a shelf. I took it and placed it on top of the gas tank and it seem to be the right size. This can was the type that contained 39 oz of ground coffee and Folgers was the brand.. Using the can I was able to make my own tool for removing that ring on the top of the gas tank.
Here are the steps I used.
Note: Before I start, I apologize for my pictures not showing a circle. For some reason my camera decided to make them oval instead. Rest assured, all pictures and procedures involve circles not ovals.

****** Step 1 – Selecting the coffee can
Find one that holds 39oz/1.1.kg of coffee. The can must be of the type that you need to use a can opener to open it. The type that uses a pull off foil lid will not work because of the large lip inside the can. The can I selected was a Folgers brand.
Open the can and empty it.

****** Step 2 tracing
Get a piece of construction paper or poster board that can be easily folded but will hold its shape when unfolded.
Trace the circumference of the can onto the paper and cut out the resulting circle. Fold your circle into four equal parts and mark the spots where the folds intersect with the circumference of the template. Picture 001 shows the folds and the marked spots.

****** Step 3 Preparing the template.
Draw four lines, making a square, between the four spots you marked in step 2. See Picture 003 for this.

****** Step 4 Mark your spots.
The four lines created in step 3 need to be broken into 3 parts. Measure 1 1/8” from each corner and mark the spots. If you measured correctly all marks should be 1 1/8” apart. This is important that you not be to far off. Each line must be split into three sections. If 1 1/8” does not work, adjust accordingly. See Picture 004 for this.
****** Step 5 making a square.
Draw lines between the eight spots created in step 4. See Picture 006 for this. The dotted lines depict this step. This step, along with Step 2 should have produced 12 intersection points on the circumference of the template.

****** Step 6 creating the points to cut out.
Tape your template to the opening on the coffee can. See Picture 005 for this.
Now mark the points of intersection from the template onto the can itself. These 12 points should correspond exactly to the locations of the 12 tabs on the gas tank ring. Take a good look at the gas tank ring. Note that one of the tabs on the gas tank ring has an arrow on it and is slightly larger than the rest. Mark the location of this tab so when you reinstall it you will get it reinstalled in the same position.

****** Step 7 making the tool
Once the can has been marked you are ready to cut the can. At the 12 points marked on the can, using a Dremel, tin snips, whatever , cut notches in the can. Keep the notches small. ¼” deep and 1/4 “ wide should be sufficient. Remember the one slightly larger tab.
Picture 007 shows the completed tool. Mine is a little sloppy but it works.

****** Step 8 Trying it out.
Remove the four connections on the top of the gas tank. Place the tool on top of the gas tank ring. Align the slightly larger slot with the arrowed tab. THEN Push firmly on the can so it slides over the ring. This is a tight fit so push forcefully but not so hard the tool is bent. If it does not slide on, review what you did wrong and correct the error.
Once installed, using only your hands and arms. Turn the tool counterclockwise until the ring breaks free. The ring is held in place by a rubber O-Ring so it is fairly stiff.

That’s it. I might add that think about saving this template. It may come in handy later on.


Color me Gone
27,333 Posts
Rusty, great write up, I made a copy of this in the how-to section. I read at one time a person using pvc pipe but this would be something most might have around the house now.
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