Jivermo wrote:Colin returned, after dealing with his clutch cable, to finish up my brake job. The front discs proved okay, and we thought we were going to have an easy time of it, but nooooo. That last wheel, the only one we did not pull, defied adjustment. It was heating up during our test stopping.
So the afternoon passed into the night, and the inevitable stumbling block presented itself to us, and how we dealt with it, I'll leave to this spooky fellow to relate.
So yes, we are developing an album of late night photography there at McIntyre Acres, I remember one evocative shot of the man who had discovered his #1 main bearing was rotating in the crankcase.
I arrived at 11:30am after the late night clutch operation. Washed the Naranja Westy with the meanest fighting python of a balky water hose and the rudest sprayer I have ever been so disrespected by:
Finished sanding and painting the left side lower tin:
Then I took a shower to clean up before getting grimed up with brakes.
This entire Florida visit was graced by top-drawer accommodations and gracious hospitality and a generosity of time and resources on the part of Jivermo. Sort of makes me want to be a better person. This appointment, however, began to unravel on the test drive. The brakes, the Cause of Today's Occasion, misbehaved right out of the driveway. The warning light came on at every application. The front pads began to chirp after we perhaps hammered them a little too hard. The left rear brake simply jerked my chain. I adjusted the rear brakes. I like how I adjust rear brakes, I don't have to "think" about the procedure, yet this left rear brake was all sticky-to-turn within a quarter mile. I re adjusted the left rear brake after taking responsibility for moving the adjusters in the wrong direction. "Hey Ian, I must have adjusted the adjusters in the wrong direction." I loosened the adjusters. The next test drive, we were rationalizing. "Does the car coast freely?" "Yeah, I think so." We did several firm slow downs and stops and the wheels all felt cool. I jacked up the rear and checked my brake adjustment. The wheel was difficult to turn again! Loosened the adjusters back to free-wheeling. Asked Ian to step on the brake pedal and apply the ebrake. "Now release." Wheel was tightened up solid.
That is when we went into the left rear brake at 6:00pm to see what was going on . I posited that the ebrake lever was rusted onto the rear shoe, and the application of the ebrake was forcing it forward where it would "stick". Close . . . it was a frozen wheel cylinder piston. The brake fluid all over the place was another clue that the wheel cylinder was hosed. The fact that the wheel cylinder had absolutely no marking, no stamp, no identity, told us that it was a crap no-name possibly Chinese hunk of porous iron prone to things like "rusting solid".
I'll give this to two somewhat seasoned gentlemen at the end of a long day. We got reserves. Even when the brake line refused to loosen. Our gradual escalation of force was a beautiful thing to behold. Right to the edge of metallurgy, old 11mm open-end / 7/16 brake flare wrench / new 11mm open-end / application of PB Blaster / small vise grips / medium vise grips / wheel cylinder unbolted / rebolted to the backing plate / big breaker bar handle in wheel cylinder + vise grips on fitting / break out the propane and fry that mess / medium vise grips and lots of smoke, and the little bitty 11mm fitting finally let go. And you know what? There was no rust in the threads, it was all because Monkey Man Went Ape back when these no-name wheel cylinders were installed. Still had a salvageable nut on the fitting too! We reassembled the works and did not go on a test drive. Ask the Spooky Photographer to relate . . .
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 93,996 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,113 miles