I needed access to the clutch and brake master cylinders so I had to make an access panel to get to them. I put this off because I didn`t want to cut up one of the only parts of the tank that didn`t have any damage, but the time had finally come. To do this, I first cut a piece of sheet metal and and used the English Wheel to make it fit the contour of the tank.
Then the outline of the piece was drawn on the tank to give me a pattern to cut out.
Next, I used a 2 1/2" hole saw to cut the corners. Careful measurement is very important to ensure the cuts are symetrical.
Then , tin shears were used to cut the remaining metal .
With a rough hole cut I used a file and calipers to make sure everything was square and true.
I next cut another piece of sheet metal about 1" larger than the hole and shaped it as before. After forming it. this was put inside the hole and scribed. This was cut a little oversized to allow for final fitting.
Then another identical piece was cut and formed in the same way, this was to become the inner flange.
To attach this piece to the body, I used urethane adhesive instead of welding. By using adhesive instead of welding, I didn`t have to worry about warping anything.
You can never use too many clamps when glueing parts togther.
After removing the excess glue, the next step was to make the cover fit as close as possible. This took a lot of time with a belt sander and file, but eventually it fit. After carefully measuring. the screw holes were drilled.
To make the countersunk screws fit, I needed to make a die to recess the holes. I used two 1/2" bolts and turned them down on the lathe.
I used a "c" clamp to press the dies into the holes and then used nutserts in the holes. This was also done on the cover.
And this is the completed access panel.