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Old 11-18-2022, 12:27 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Propane tanks

Hello everyone. A quick question. Has anyone thought about using a propane cylinder for a forklift. They can be either mounted vertical or horizontal? I want to place them under my bus but there is not enough room for a big tank.

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Old 11-18-2022, 04:06 PM   #2
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the forklift tank are built to use liquid and a regular tank for appliances use vapor.
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Old 11-18-2022, 05:23 PM   #3
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A horizontal mounted forklift tank could potentially be used on a skoolie.
The mounting brackets used on a forklift are fairly universal, and could be used under a bus to hold a tank securely. I would also recommend enclosing the area to house the tank(s) to prevent any damage from road hazards or outright theft of tanks.

Forklift tanks are typically only used in a horizontal mounting position due to the internal pickup tubing.
The LP fuel is the same for barbeque tanks as well as forklift tanks.

A forklift tank can be filled by any seller/refiller of portable tanks.
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Old 11-18-2022, 05:44 PM   #4
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i dont know.
but would beg to differ.
the pick up tube picks up liquid gas and the BBQ tank style doesnt have a pick up tube and only picks up vapor.
i had the same idea years ago about a forklift tank because i have access to plenty of them.
and was told what i am saying now.
no first hand knowledge because i havent tried.
but will be watching this thread.
BBQ tanks can be swapped almost anywhere these days.
with the refill locations the tank has to be up to the latest greatest code and inspection date.
and the connections are not the same so if you dont have a refill location near you when you run out you just cant supplement with a BBQ tank until you can find/get to a place.
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Old 11-19-2022, 01:37 AM   #5
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Using forklift tanks probably means removing the tank every time you want it filled. While that may be "doable", it's certainly not going to be fun and you're going to want a side access door to get to the tank or you'll be on your back unhooking it and putting it back in (full and heavy).
We chose an ASME tank that can be permanently mounted under the vehicle. And there are remote fill kits available so that you can mount the tank between the frame rails..... if you have room.
The tank we chose is a 29.3 gal (23.44 gal at the standard of 80% fill).

ASME tanks DO NOT have to be removed for filling and they don't have to be tested and re-certified like DOT (BBQ) tanks. Not sure if forklift tanks are DOT or ASME certified but I'd suspect they're DOT.
We chose the ASME permanently mounted and refillable in situ because the 40 pound (about 8 gal) tank on our RV is a PITA to pull out and reinstall every time it needs filled, requires periodic re-certification, and at just 8 gal it's heavy as heck and lasts a very short time when used for for heating.
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Old 11-19-2022, 05:12 PM   #6
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It works for me

I'm using tanks purchased on ebay which are designed for horizontal placement. They aren't forklift tanks which as I understand are designed to draw liquid. I have three 30lb tanks secured to a box under the bus. I fill a couple each month in north Texas winters. If I had to start all over from the beginning I would do it again exactly the same, without hesitation.
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Old 11-19-2022, 05:34 PM   #7
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Certification.

The tanks I use are new and have a date (production date?) stamped into the frame. The guys at the propane shop always check it and tell me the tanks are good for 10 years. Not sure if they can be re-certified or must be replaced. I've learned the tanks sold at the propane shop are less expensive than ebay. Go figure. Never stepped into a propane shop until I owned these so how would I have known.





Quote:
Originally Posted by HamSkoolie View Post
Using forklift tanks probably means removing the tank every time you want it filled. While that may be "doable", it's certainly not going to be fun and you're going to want a side access door to get to the tank or you'll be on your back unhooking it and putting it back in (full and heavy).
We chose an ASME tank that can be permanently mounted under the vehicle. And there are remote fill kits available so that you can mount the tank between the frame rails..... if you have room.
The tank we chose is a 29.3 gal (23.44 gal at the standard of 80% fill).

ASME tanks DO NOT have to be removed for filling and they don't have to be tested and re-certified like DOT (BBQ) tanks. Not sure if forklift tanks are DOT or ASME certified but I'd suspect they're DOT.
We chose the ASME permanently mounted and refillable in situ because the 40 pound (about 8 gal) tank on our RV is a PITA to pull out and reinstall every time it needs filled, requires periodic re-certification, and at just 8 gal it's heavy as heck and lasts a very short time when used for for heating.
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Old 11-19-2022, 09:16 PM   #8
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Don't forget that when you refill forklift and BBQ grill cylinders (if they're certified by DOT they're 'cylinders', not tanks), you have to first open the bleeder valve, and when the cylinder is almost full it will start spitting out liquid and gaseous LPG from this valve. If you mounted a forklift cylinder under the bus, how will you deal with the LPG vented while refilling it? When full they're very heavy to lift by hand.

At work we had a 150-gallon LPG tank for filling our forklifts, and I had to buy an adapter to also fill 20lb BBQ grill cylinders.

John
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Old 11-23-2022, 09:01 PM   #9
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Y'all need to pay attention to Jolly Roger bus 223, if it's an actual forklift tank it has a pickup tube in it and it only picks up liquid. Grills and everything we're using in our buses require vapor. Forklift tanks won't work.
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Old 11-24-2022, 07:03 AM   #10
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(I maybe told this story here, I canna remember...)
.
We were camping near Folsom Reservoir in north California.
One fine morning, the 'recreationally-enhanced' group a couple hundred yards away had a collective screaming conniption fit, running out of their rancid reeking -- permanently tilted -- RecreateVehicle at full-throttle.
They circled it several times -- dire trepidations and predictions at major volume -- then one brave soul cautiously re-entered it.
After an hour or so of 'recreationally-enhanced' discussions -- always hilarious -- they exited with a five-gallon twenty-pound 'BBQ' bottle, and tossed it in a Dumpster®.
.
Suspiciously glaring around the neighborhood, they broke camp at high-speed, and headed for safer pastures...
...as if the location was the culprit causing their situation.
Trust me as I say 'their situation probably accompanied them to their next location, and pretty much anyplace else, too'.
.
Intrigued, we investigated the discarded bottle.
With 'horizontal' side-mount brackets, it appeared to be a fork-lift fuel-tank.
Ancient, battered, faded layers of paint over old paint, it was stamped with the date '1947'.
We got the impression they attempted to use it in the common 'vertical' position, and it dutifully dispensed liquid fuel into their appliance designed for vapor fuel.
Hence, the thrilling memories to share with their grandchildren.
.
Naturally, we foraged it -- it felt as though it was full -- and used it around camps for a couple decades.
.
Shocked by the date, fill-station techs initially refused to touch it until we explained "It is for a fork-lift.".
While 'technically' true...
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