K.J. Jones
October 13, 2006
Rick's Hot Rods makes each Alumastealth from 0.100-inch-thick, radius-bent, 5052aluminum. It weighs in at about 28 pounds (empty) and holds 14 gallons of fuel.

What's so cool about a fuel tank, you ask? Well, in this day and age of "big power" in street 'Stangs, one of the keys to attaining and maintaining serious muscle is by having an efficient fuel supply, and doing that starts with having an appropriate container for the fuel. A sumped fuel tank or a fuel cell are the most-popular options. Upgraded fuel lines and rails complete the package.

We're plenty aware there are 'Stangbangers out there who make killer horsepower, let's say 500 or better at the rear wheels, using bone-stock fuel-system components (tank, pump, lines, and so on). While the achievement is commendable and a testament to having a dialed-in fuelsystem, we think those who are still "stuck on stock" for vanity, tank capacity, or tank-location/mounting reasons are also leaving a lot of performance on the table by not having a fuel setup that supports seriously envelope-pushing performance.

The most-popular, poor-man's tactic for trying to make big power with a 'Stang's stock fuel tank is to install a larger pump (usually mounted externally) and a high-flowing fuel pickup to feed it. While this method does work and can save you some dough, it also can be a bit dicey. Thinkabout it: Regardless of the pickup's size, it still draws the fuel from the stock-tank's reservoir, which makes minding your fuel levels critical. With this type of setup, if you're not sitting on at least a half-tank of fuel when you start getting on the gas, you may find yourself dealing with fuel-related problems like vapor lock, pumpcavitation/erratic fuel pressure, and the always dangerous lean condition under load or high boost, which is never a good thing.

The return-style fuel system has long proven itself to be the fuel-supply for street mavens with 'Stangs that pump out the serious horses, and the proper way to set a Pony up with this system has included installing a fuel cell or a stock tank that has been modified with a sump tray, that keeps fuel flowing to the pickup at all times--especially during the hard launches that we're all known for doingfrom time to time, and when you need fuel to be there.

This is important! It's the filler-neck-to-tank gasket/seal (PN F4ZZ-9072-DA) that's an absolute must-have part for installing a fuel tank. This seal is not included with the Alumastealth tank, so the original tank's seal must be recycled or you'll have to make sure you've got a new one--like we had to.

Our discovery of the Alumastealth tank ($1,497.73) was right on time. While the plan for our project T-top coupe was to install Aeromotive's complete Eliminator kit (PN 17106; $2,045.05)--a Fox-ready 1,100 hp fuel system that includes an already-sumped OEM fuel tank, braided lines,rails, regulator, AN fittings, Micron filter, the proven A1000 fuel pump, and everything else needed to complete a big-time fuel system, we decided that swapping the kit's modified stock tank with Rick's Hot Rod's Alumastealth would be a better move for this particular effort. The switch represents exactly what we were talking about when we told you that one of our main goals with the project is to introduce new and good parts for Fox fans to consider in their quest for high-horsepower and "cool-'Stang" gusto.

Rick's Alumastealth covers both criteria quite well with this new fuel tank. It's capable of supporting 1,000-plus horsepower, and it's an absolutely beautiful piece of metalwork. However, some might argue that the real beauty is inside the Alumastealth, where an Aeromotive A1000 fuel pump (PN 11101) and 100-Micron pre-filter (PN 12304) share space with the fuel. Actually, we think the tank might be a "first" when it comes to this type of technology for Foxes. Until now, we haven't heard of any other in-tank, fuel-supply setup that steps up to that much hp.

Installation went without a hitch and is plenty doable by any novice or pro 'Stangbanger, as the tank really is a direct replacement for the factory piece. There's a minor amount of wiring necessary for juicing up the sending unit and getting power to the pump. Of course, the fuel-lineand vent plumbing are required, but it's within the realm of completing in a drama-free manner within a two-hour timeframe, especially if you've got fuel in your 'Stang's original tank. If that is the case, we strongly recommend you siphon the fuel out of the tank and into the proper containers before starting the project.

The captions have more of the details, so read on and learn how cool this deal really is.