Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Revisiting brakes

I took some time today and pulled out all of the rear brake lines, the master cylinder and headed off to the hose shop to see what's possible.  The original assessment of replacing the 3 sections didn't seem like it was going to work out as well as I'd originally thought.  I can, however, replace two sections with one so I consider that a win.

I'm intending on having these be the 'first run' hoses - replacing all of the rubber hoses with braided lines.
These are newly made hoses to replace the hose on the far left of the above photo made today at the local hose shop.  I am having a special hose made to eliminate the last two pieces of the equation made into one piece-eliminating an additional failure point in the system.
The front brake lines - with the adapter for the GM caliper.  They look a lot worse than they are - but I'm having stainless braided lines made that will use a finished end vs. using an adapter (one less failure point).  Should have those back by the end of the week.

Monday, February 27, 2017

inching forward, one day at a time

I've accomplished very little over the last week - I caught a cold and then went out of town for work for a few days.  I returned and haven't really accomplished much - too many other 'life' things going on.

The part labeling and organization is largely finished but I stalled a bit at the end - waiting for other 'life events' to conclude so I'd know just how far to take it.

I started looking at the components of the brake kit that I'm installing - one being the reuse of the sleeve for the parking brake.  I pulled the old cables and gave them a quick 'once over' - immediately noticing that the quality control on them was abysmal (top two in the photo).  The bottom one is a new purchase...I would have two of them but issues with my fancy new laptop prevented me from accomplishing that - so I ordered another one today.
The 'wheel' end of the cables are different lengths as well - this is what happens when 'Made in Brazil' is all that can be found for some parts.  One goes through inspection while the drunk is assigned to quality control and the next is 'approved' by someone who probably should go to an optometrist.  I measured both and they're too short  The bottom one (also made in Brazil) is closer to the proper length but still not right.  I wonder what the fourth one will bring...hope it's close to the new one (meaning that the same level of "quality" is achieved).  I'm going to cut the cables off and use only the sheath for the replacement cables made by ze Germans.

I called the hose shop in town and they confirmed that they can make custom hose to replace three of the connections for the brake line.  All I have to do now is remove it from the car and put together some measurements.  The hoses can be made in a few hours and will also fit in the factory brackets for support.  I'm hoping to get this done this week so that the car can be back on tires and I can finish this epically long brake job and get into tuning the engine.

I also bought one of Pedro's last fog light bars - it's something that I've been contemplating for a while - how I plan to mount the fog lights (another project).  I've got the lighting relays and the horn relays to install yet...the projects are stacking up on this car and it's only February.

Then there's the shift coupler and bushing...

Monday, February 13, 2017


I've spent a small part of the last few working days organizing and labeling my parts - progress is being made, however slow.  I'm still moving forward and it feels good to be getting organized.  There are a handful of parts that I can't find in the parts book or they're not individually called out.

In my search for a better solution for the rear disc brake fluid lines, I found a shop that's 20 minutes from the house that makes custom brake lines and can bend tubing.  If for nothing else, I'm thinking about stopping by tomorrow or Wednesday to see what it would cost to have two custom made brake lines to replace three sections of brake line.  I'm not keen on that many failure points but I also don't want to spend $200 on brake lines.  So, I'll just have to stop by and see what they can do and how much that will cost...

Until the brakes are done, I'll just keep working on the parts organization...

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Making use of short slow periods

 My working from home situation is slowly finding a rhythm and I'm finding myself with odd periods of empty time that I used to kill in the office by having random conversations, getting coffee or spacing out.  Working from home allows me to do something slightly more productive.  I decided to start my 2017 goal of getting the parts identified and into an inventory tracking.
 I made it through four totes of parts yesterday - organized them into a general group, bagged and tagged each part with the part number and description on a tag.  Most of what I accomplished yesterday was small interior parts and electrical parts.

The next step will be to organize them by where they go on the car (all door parts together, for example) but that'll most likely happen once everything is tagged and logged.
I've found parts I completely forgot that I had...which is bound to happen when things get stuffed into a box and moved four states away.  I had parts in three or four different places in the old house.  My goal is to get them all into one place in the new house - when we find it.

I made decent progress yesterday and I'm hoping to get more done this week.  Once I have a larger block of time, I'll get back to the brakes.  Until then, I'll stay on this - one tote at a time - until it's done.

Monday, February 6, 2017

CSP rear brakes, part 1

Yesterday was the day to do it - but the weather here wasn't great and half of my stuff is still packed (moved from Chicago to Atlanta) because we're in a 'temporary house' until April...so finding parts and tools was kind of a pain in the ass and slowed progress considerably.

The rear kit is, like the front kit, very easy to install.  All of the parts are labeled in a couple of exploded diagrams - showing both what is included in the kit and where it goes as you're doing the installation.  Again, like the front kit, the only thing (initially) not included is the lug nuts.  M14x1.5 R12 ball seat (for stock wheels) is what I used.

I'll start off by stating that, due to several factors, I have not yet finished the installation.

 The diagram (at left) shows a Type 1 rear swing axle which appears to be a very simple - bolt in installation...but the routing of the Type 3 brake line requires the line to navigate past the shock and then work its way to the caliper.  The brake line at the caliper must be 'soft' due to the movement of the caliper so one line doesn't work.
This is what I was able to crudely bend up by hand to get around the shock.  I'll probably leave it this way until I take the whole thing apart for a restoration.  I'm not a fan of the four pieces of brake line but it'll work for now.  It looks less complex than it really is but shouldn't be too bad using a tube bender.

Just for shits and grins, I used the original brake line and bent it up to see how it would work out (I have multiple new spares) but I'm not sure I'm a fan of this wide loop.

Wheel on - looking ready to go but I've got a decent amount of work to do before I can drive off...