i thought i'd throw it out there for ideas. but i may need to buy a new/refurbished caliper.
my problem is with the lefthand rear caliper. when i release the handbrake, it does not 'release' properly, and sticks 'engaged'. i found out one day when smoke was bellowing out from the wheel! and this may not have helped the situation, cos the massive heat may have degraded any seals and stuff.
i initially hoped it was entirely due to the rear cable. i pulled it off, and indeed it was extremely stiff; consistent with what others have described, the 2 concertina rubber boots had perished, so presumably road grime and water had entered over the years, to cause excessive friction. plus some of the outer casing had corroded and split.
anyway, i've now replaced this, but the problem persists. so each time i want to go for a drive, i need to reach between my rear wheel spokes and manually push the lever aside to release the brake!
the normal footbrake seems to work fine. i don't fully understand how the actual caliper works or how the handbrake integrates with the normal brakes though.
to fix it, my issues include:
*minimising time off the road: i can't afford to have the car waiting for weeks to have the existing caliper refurbished
*lack of parts locally in australia
so i am asking:
*is my situation familiar to anyone, and is there an easy fix? spraying lubricant into the mechanism?
*pumping the footbrake or pulling the handbrake repeatedly, hoping it loosens?
*is this caliper shared with other alfa's/cars? ok, fiats of the same era were not sold here either (tempra, punto, tipo, etc) and nor the alfa 145/146; but how about the 916 GTV or series 1 164?
there's a new caliper for sale on ebay UK for a very reasonable UK$41. but when i enquired about postage to australia....UK$128 just for that!
i don't know why ebay stores and some online stores charge what seems to be crazy amounts for postage here!
*sigh* thanks for reading. but if i keep my fingers crossed for long enough, maybe the caliper will fix itself?
or am i doomed to replacing it.