With so many custom oil tank options on the market, we thought it be good idea to compare a couple of them to our Lowbrow Customs US made oil tanks. Tyler gives his opinions on what to look for when purchasing custom chopper oil tanks and things to steer away from entirely. Tyler even cuts open one of our Lowbrow Customs oil tanks to show the internals and how our tanks use furnace brazed standoff pipes to vent and return oil to the tank.
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You can read a full transcription of this video below:
Hey, it's Tyler with Lowbrow customs. Today, we're going to talk about some comparisons between different motorcycle oil tanks.
If you're looking for an oil tank for your custom motorcycle there's a lot of options out there and you want to make sure you understand what the differences are. In front of us, here, are four different oil tanks. The center two are produced by Lowbrow customs, and the other two by other people. I wanted to just point out some of the features again that you should be aware of. On this oil tank, it's a magnet there, a tubing body spun inverted dome ends.
When I look at this the first thing I noticed honestly is, that there's only two mounting points. There's two mounting points on the top of the tank there's nothing on the bottom. This is the feed bung for feeding oil to your engine. This is quite common with aftermarket oil tanks that to simplify their production bungs are welded to the top or towards the rear of the tank. One of these will be a vent fitting and that allows air to enter and leave your oil tank allowing your engine to return oil to the tank as it should.
If it wasn't vented there's going to be pressure building up in there which is not good. The other one would be for a return fitting where your engine's returning hot oil into the oil tank dropping that hot oil to the top which is what you want because it's going to be feeding the somewhat cooler oil from the bottom. You've got these two mounts here. It comes with hardware. It looks like grade two regular hardware store mounting hardware which I suppose is fine, I wouldn't use it.
The tabs included are embarrassing, I don't know, a joke. I can't imagine they could be used for anything especially given that there's no third mount. That's my primary concern with this tank because that there's no third mounting point. If you actually ride your motorcycle, you want to ensure that your oil tank doesn't snap off while you're out trying to have fun or out on a road trip where it's going to be a real pain in the ass to deal with a broken oil tank.
The other thing I'd mention is the cap on this. It's got probably I'd say three threads on it. It's quite shallow. That could easily loosen up and lose it and again it's just one of those problems that a real pain if it happens. The other thing is the o-ring, if you can see that, it just falls off. It's just like-- It's the thought that counts, but that's not really doing anything. The threads the mating of the cap and the tank is very loose again going to contribute to potentially losing that cap.
Some somewhat minor things but when you have any of those issues breaking mounts, having your cap fall off and get lost those types of things. If that happens to you, you're going to be really be bummed out and it could put a real damper on your weekend. One thing also that I might mention regarding the number of mounts, the thickness of the mounting tabs you might choose to use is that a quart of oil weighs a bit over two pounds.
When you have a tank with a capacity of three to four quarts, in this case, it's a lower capacity because of the dished ends, the inverted domes, that's really going to cut probably a three quarter quart capacity out of your tank. Now, the oil and when you have cool oil in your oil tank running through your engine keeping your engine cool and increasing the life of the top end and bottom end of your engine, by having more oil it does keep it cooler.
While the capacity isn't in itself necessarily a problem, the heat of the oil is. Another option here, this one, it doesn't come through the video, but this thing is crazy heavy. I do believe that these dome bends are fence post caps. Imagine you're parking at the gas station and you don't want to hit the big post near the pump. Well, that's what that cap is from. This tank weighs in at five and a half pounds which is more than two pounds heavier than any of these other versions.
The reason that's important-- Again, you add in three quarts of oil, that's six more pounds and now you've got 12 pounds hanging off of your motorcycle that you'd really need to mount securely. The concern there-- You can mount it securely, but you just better be damn well sure you do. Otherwise, this thing is breaking off and skittering down the road like a bomb. This tank, very similar to the last one, it's got a feed bung on the bottom which will feed oil to your engine. Then, it's got two bungs on the top.
One would be for a vent, and the other one would be the return to send the oil back into your tank. This has a nicely made aluminum cap with plenty of threads. I like that. Again, less likely you're going to accidentally lose that going down the road or on a trip, o-ring seal. That's all good. The weight on this tank is a major disadvantage in my opinion. The other thing is that there are no mounting bungs at all on this tank which is fine because you can fabricate your own.
But depending on the skill level of the customer, that can pose a problem too especially with the weight of this tank. They better be beefy mounts and you better be a good welder to ensure that they don't have a failure. Now, these two tanks, full disclosure, are Lowbrow oil tanks. Of course, I like them. I can say that out of our former oil tanks not a single component on these is off the shelf, nothing is bought out of the catalog. Every single component on this oil tanks is made for these oil tanks here in the USA for your motorcycles.
There's simply no cutting corners. There's no trying to make something work that shouldn't be used. We've got spun end caps in two different styles. We've got this dimpled style. I would take two styles currently. We're always working on new designs, a dimpled end cap and a domed end cap. These are spun for us here in Cleveland, Ohio where the tooling made we have this spun, very high quality, beautiful finish. All of the bungs and fittings are all Lowbrow customs brand. We've got three mounting points.
Two at the top one at the bottom. They're five-sixteenth inch, 18 thread very standard. It gives you really secure mounts. This particular tank is made for a British motorcycle. Mainly, it would be used in Triumphs. It could also work for BSA and such. This feed bung is set up for a stock Triumph oil feed filter. Then, the return here has the tee coming off of it that goes up to feed the rocker boxes.
One thing you might notice is on this Lowbrow tanks is that all of our fittings are on the bottom such as on this domed end one which is set up for a Harley Davidson Sportster big twin or pretty much any other motorcycle you want. This isn't relegated only to Harley Davidsons. It could be used on anything. Again, three mounting points, filler cap and then we've got a feed, return, and vent fitting bung.
Now, we've got furnace braised internal tubing that keeps these bungs very clean keeps your oil line routing very simple to the bottom of the tank instead of having to run hoses up over to the back into the top of your tank. That can be a little unsightly. What I'm going to do is, grab my grinder and I'm going to cut this open. I will give you a very clear picture of exactly what I'm talking about. Safety first.
There we have it.
We cut this oil tank open to give you a look at what's on the inside. It also turned out to make a tiny canoe. In here, you can see the standoffs these furnace braised standpipes that come from the fittings on the bottom. You'll have your feed again that'll feed oil to your engine. You have your return line which that oil comes up the tube about a quarter inch from the top of the body. We'll dump in the hot oil will be on the top layer in your oil tank. While the cooler oil feeds from the bottom just like if you like.
This vent tube which has a bend in it to get the vent as high as possible but clear that mounting bung. The vent tube allows you to run the fitting with a hose just to atmosphere just down out of the way. That will allow your tank to maintain pressure throughout. You can also see in here that there are the bodies of the mounting bungs. They're five-sixteenth, 18 thread blind threaded top hat bungs for really good secure mounting. One thing I had mentioned earlier was our caps. This cap is solid aluminum.
There's no need for a vented cap because of the standoff here that serves as a vent for the oil tank and really nice tight fit o-ring seal. These caps aren't going anywhere. Another nice thing is that at Lowbrow Customs we have a variety of other caps that will fit our oil tanks. These are one and five sixteenth inch 12 threads per inch. We've got brass, we have aluminum, we have a variety of cast caps, and different styles you can choose from.
I hope you enjoyed. I hope you learned something about oil tanks. Take that knowledge, use it on your bike. Have a reliable motorcycle you can have fun with and avoid problems you can run into with inferior products. Thanks very much. Make sure to check out lowbrowcustoms.com. We're coming out with new products all the time and we love it we live it and we work hard to make all kinds of good new parts like this for you guys. Thanks very much.