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Discussion Starter #1
Hiya,

This thread is less of a 'how to' more of a 'could you guys/gals watch over my shoulder while I do this and give me some helpful advice and/or scream insults at me for doing something stupid :) The idea is that it's a learning process for me, if I do screw em up then it may be £40 down the drain but hopefully I will have learnt something along the way.

I wanted to completely refurb some calipers, learn how it all goes together and end up with something sparkly :) I cant afford the time off the road to do it on the ones on my car so I bought these from AutoLusso (Thanks guys!), shame really as they were in quite good nick :)

I do plan on getting someone responsible to have a look over them when I've finished to ensure I've got it all 100% :)

What I got.
Alfa Caliper 003.jpg

Disassembly.

Ok so I pulled everything easy apart, keeping all the bits safe, in hindsight doing this on the kitchen table was a mistake, these things hold a surprising amount of brake fluid even after being off the car for a while!

Alfa Caliper 004.jpg

I dont have an air hose to push the pistons out so I've been (very) carefully pulling them out by hand or with some covered mole grips, being careful to keep the pull square on. You can see where I've got the pistons out to. They dont seem to want to come any more (on either caliper).

I read on another site you can get the dust jackets off before getting the piston all the way out, anyone got a recommendation? The dust jackets look in good condition, no rips or holes so I'd like to keep em in one piece for now.

This one also has a chunk of brake pipe attached. I can see why! It wont budge. Soaking in WD40 now. The sliders are also on solidly. I've got to try to get those off too.

Thoughts, comments and ideas welcome :)

Next Steps:
1). Get the pistons out
2). Seperate the dust jacket and o-ring and clean.
3). Clean up the pistons
4). Find some nuts to go into the brake line holes to keep them clean.
5). Degrease the whole thing (Can I use Gunk spray on them?)
6). Order some new nipples (Mmm)
7). Clean up with a whirling wire wool brush thingy.

Cheers,
Chris
 

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Nip down to the local petrol station and see if their tyre inflator can help get the pistons out? I'm not sure if there's enough pressure there though.

EDIT : There may be too much leakage as well unless you have one of those airbed inflation adaptors to ram into the end of the old brake hose.
 

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Local garage tyre inflator used to work fine for me.. you will need to rig up a bit of hose with a tyre valve on one end.. and and a brake pipe union on the other.. no need to do it up tight.. A foot pump works OK too..

HOT TIP .. put the caliper in a strong bag of some sort when you apply air pressure..

The bl00dy pistons can go off like a gun when they pop out.. keep fingers out of the way..

If you kill the cashier.. I'm not responsible :)

Dust jackets are usually held on by a wire circular springy thing which is usually a blob of rust.. can be hard to get off without breaking it or ripping the rubber..

have a go though.. soak everything in brake fuid overnight.. don't use mineral oil or anything but brake fluid as a lubricant anywhere near brakes..

heat up the bit of brake pipe union with a blow torch.. very hot.. and then quench it in cold water.. if you don't have a blow torch wait until the missus is out and use the gas cooker and sink.. and then clean the kitchen and open all windows to ventilate.. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Ok between those two answers i got the airbed inflation adaptor and plugged that onto a bike pump. Amazing what air pressure can do. Two pumps of the bike pump was enough to of fire it out with considerable force! I think an air-line on that could have done some serious damage!!

Now I just need to to get that bit of brake pipe off.. easier said than done tho. Soaking overnight in WD40 and it's still not budging. Should invest in some plus-gas really. I'll give it another go later.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Ok brake pipe off :) Nearly broke my workmate but it came off in the end with some serious application of pressure.

Ok so now I have plastic trays with bits in, pistons bubblewrapped to keep em nice and safe. Lucky for me Autolusso supplied parts in excellent condition and the piston and (whatever it's called the piston goes into!) are lovely and smooth with no hints of corrosion or roughness.

Any suggestions for cleaning up these guys? I could get em shotblasted I guess how about DIY options? I have one of these

Bosch Pencil Brush 2609256538 25mm, 3165140389570

That does the job but it's not great at getting into the curvy bits and it needs a lot of goes over to even start to get it clean :)

Also does anyone have any suggestions as to where I can go out and buy caliper grease (local shops are completely useless), how much to put on and where (ie do I coat the back of the piston, slides etc and just a thin smear or pile it on?)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Ok, My dad's loaned me the 'mother of all' drill bit wire brushes.. Will be giving that thing a try tomorrow after buying some eye protection!

This has taken (due to life stuff) much longer than anticipated, since the pistons are out of the caliper I'm a little worried about them rusting, for now I've covered them in brake fluid, is that going to work.. anything better?

I've ordered some red rubber grease from ebay, now the question remains.. how much and where to grease :)

Also does anyone know the nipple size for the lucas calipers?
 

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Ok, My dad's loaned me the 'mother of all' drill bit wire brushes.. Will be giving that thing a try tomorrow after buying some eye protection!

This has taken (due to life stuff) much longer than anticipated, since the pistons are out of the caliper I'm a little worried about them rusting, for now I've covered them in brake fluid, is that going to work.. anything better?

I've ordered some red rubber grease from ebay, now the question remains.. how much and where to grease :)

Also does anyone know the nipple size for the lucas calipers?
just coat them in brake fluid and wrap then in a rag soaked in brake fuid..

be careful what grease you use..
personally I just use brake fluid as a lubricant..
 

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Discussion Starter #9

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Ok, My dad's loaned me the 'mother of all' drill bit wire brushes.. Will be giving that thing a try tomorrow after buying some eye protection!
And a dust mask breathing that stuff in will do you just as much harm as getting it in your eye.

Looking forward to the finished result.
 

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Thanks seadart, good idea.. time to find something to turn into a new rag :)

I think this is the grease I ordered.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Castrol-R...t=UK_Hand_Tools_Equipment&hash=item5d2707943b

Looking through various guides on caliper rebuilds on the internet in general I've seen people say both to lightly grease the piston and to only use brake fluid :) I dunno!
It may be ok.. but its not in a marked castrol pot?? I'd go for the brake fluid only approach..
its only to act as an assembly lubricant..
I've seen what can happen to piston seals when the wrong stuff is used.. also if they are coated in grease.. sh*t sticks to grease.. as far as anything hydraulic is concerned.. clean is best..

are you replacing the piston seals? if so put a dollop of the grease on an old seal.. if its going to do damage it usually happens in a day or two..
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Finally getting somewhere rust-wise...

On the left the B&Q contender..

On the right the... Nobody knows where it came from serious wire brush.

WireBrush.jpg

Had a quick go with it today and now the rust is flying off (in fact I have to be careful to not start scoring the metal)

Will give it a proper go tomorrow and see if I can finally get these cleaned up.
 

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reverse the drill every now and again then the B&Q contender won't get all wrapped around itself.. and if you soak the paint in hydraulic fluid overnight it will soften it up.. good stuff hydraulic fluid.. you can also use it as hydraulic fluid.. :)
 

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Don't suppose anybody has done a guide to doing this on the Brembo calipers??

@ chris_c2000 how you getting on mate??
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Household full of sick people (typical on my week off) and every time I fire up the drill I get complaints they cant sleep :(

Maybe tomorrow :(
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Ok,

Got about 2 hours today to work on this,

First half of one caliper well on it's way :

First-Half-Cleaned.jpg
After wire brushing

First-Half-Undercoat.jpg
Undercoated with Hammerite Red-Oxide undercoat.

I've not painted the areas the pads slide in, I read on here that this can cause problems (squealing etc).

Anyone else got any experience of this?
 

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I painted mine not too long ago and they were fine mate, no squeeling....well none until I put Mintex pads in!!

Any idea what red paint you are going to use?? I tried halfords and symons and they were both quite orange.....actually the halford stuff was orange, no 2 ways about it!!

I eventually used this stuff but its quite expensive!! UK Paints Auto K special effect

Going to try to find something cheaper as I'm going to fully rebuild mine tomorrow
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Hammerite Smooth Red :)

Did my rear calipers with that (on the car so only half a job!) but they came out looking good.

Alfa Rear Refurb.jpg

Got told off again for using the drill at 8pm in the garage :) So tonight am doing a couple of coats on the slider part I undercoated yesterday. Will post a pic when it's dry.

Chris
 
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