View Full Version : Another Brake Problem

01-09-2016, 12:52 PM
Been fighting a brake problem for a few weeks now, soft pedal and pedal wouldnt return all the way up. Had to pull it up the last inch with my foot, if I didnt, front brakes would be locked.
Replaced all hard lines and front and rear flex lines.
Bought a new master cylinder and the reservoir seemed much larger than the old one. Come to find out, the old one was the type with the screw on cap from a 64 tbird,,my car is a 65. Further checking, found the booster to be from a 64 as well, new booster ordered. The old booster is the midland type.
Is there a preference between the midland or the bendix booster.
when new booster is in will check pushrod lenght, re bench bleed MC and bleed brakes,,again.
If anyone has any thoughts on this I sure would appreciate it.

01-09-2016, 02:40 PM
There should be no difference whether you order the Midland booster or the Bendix booster. Both were used by the factory in '65 with disc brakes. I'm most familiar with the Midland booster. That seems to be the more common one in '65 and '66. At least on ones that I've owned. The Ford parts book shows the '64 style master cylinder being used with disc brakes but I've never had one. The cars I've had all had the larger master cylinder with the clamp top. Do you have an early production '65. They may have carried it over from '64.


01-09-2016, 03:42 PM
Joe, whenever you marry a booster with a new master, the 'fit' is rarely the same as original. A proper setup must be performed as described in the Shop Manual.

A new brake system is rather easy to troubleshoot. Leave the master OFF the booster and have someone press your brake pedal. Watch, and see what happens with the booster's output shaft. It should move immediately when the pedal is depressed and it should move freely.

Let's talk further after you bench bleed your new M/C. - Dave

01-09-2016, 10:09 PM
My first thought, why are you using a single master? A leak anywhere and you have no brakes, in a fast heavy car.

A new booster and dual master, Tuff Stuff 213, is available at Summit Racing for $180 to your door. Here's a thread on its installation. http://squarebirds.org/vbulletin/showpost.php?p=95331&postcount=1

01-10-2016, 11:48 AM
Data tag on door says car was built in april of 65, so maybe it was a carryover of parts from 64. Wanted to keep car original but the more I thought about that single MC the more I doubted its safety. Just might get the TuffStuff setup and be done with it. Anyone need a new single MC? Thanks for all the help, will post results soon.

01-11-2016, 03:30 AM
April is late in the model year. If a part is used from the prior year it could be for two reasons:

There was no change in the part.
New parts were not available.

When the last car from a model year rolls off the line, Material Handling removes all the stock so Maintenance can clean, retool and paint the production areas.

Racks and baskets of parts to be balanced out go to the Parts Depots around the country to be repackaged and sold through the dealerships.

The Process Engineers may move some operations to different areas of the line because the new job requires more or fewer workers.

Then, carryover parts come back to the line and so do new model parts. It is rare that Ford makes product 'running changes' in the middle of the production year but it boosts sales, like the 1985-1/2 Ford Thunderbird. - Dave

01-11-2016, 12:04 PM
Good info,,my initial thought was that someone didnt know exactly what year the car was, or got a deal on 64 parts and replaced booster and MC. They cant be original after 50 years.
In either case, going to replace them with 65 parts and probably go dual MC route.

01-11-2016, 12:24 PM
The only problem you'll have with the dual master cylinder is the brace that goes from the firewall to the shock tower. You'll have to modify the brace to get it to clear.


01-11-2016, 12:32 PM
Joe - been following your thread even though I'm a Squarebirder. Always have an interest in the brake problems after doing mine years ago.

Know what you mean on the "keeping it original". I have a '60 Tbird that my Dad and Mom bought new.

About 12 years ago I rebuilt my entire drum system. (Even paid extra and waited longer for my booster to be rebuilt and returned rather than accept an exchange) :o Worked fine but my son was in a wheelchair so needed to haul a trailer. Made the "big" decision to convert to disc brakes.

At the time there were no complete conversion kits (and still aren't really). The only route was to use Granada spindles and have your original booster face changed to accept a modern disc/drum master cyl.

Once again rather than send off my original booster (which was then only a year or so old) and have the booster face changed - I opted to buy a rebuilt and modified one outright paying for the rebuild, modification and core charges :o (embarrassed again to admit it).

Kept ALL the original parts so if I wanted to restore the car as original I could.

Here it is 12 years later and those parts are still in a box in the back of the garage.:D

You'll enjoy the car much better knowing it's safer.

Does the '65 have a proportioning or combination valve already? - think you'll need one if not!

Good luck on the project.


01-11-2016, 07:23 PM
DKheld.....nice looking bird,,always liked white cars. Yea,,when I get my new booster, will probably put the original MC on for awhole, but will change to dual MC to be safe. My car being a 65 does have front disc brakes. It also does have a proportioning valve which I rebuilt. Dreadind the job of getting up under dash to remove old booster and install new one,,not as young as we used to be.

01-13-2016, 11:28 AM
Just an FYI for everyone. When I replaced all the hard steel lines on my 65, I bought them from MACS auto parts, which is now owned by Ecklers in florida. The fit was to say the least, not good. Didnt fit tight against the rear axle housing like the originals, and two of the lines leaked at the flare.

01-14-2016, 10:14 AM
I've never bought any "pre-bent" brake lines. To me it was always difficult to see how they would ship them. And unless you're working on a bare chassis, many of the bends have to be done "in place". And then of course there's the cost factor.

01-14-2016, 05:47 PM
Brake lines are wayyyy over rated because they are so easy to cut, bend and install. The job you do will be every bit as nice as a factory job and you get to route where ever you want. The most difficult task is remembering to slide that nut on before you flare.

Need practice bending? Use your old lines because they will be trashed anyway.

Cheap mild carbon steel brake line, available at all the auto parts stores by the foot, is the hardest to flare. There are much better alternatives but they are more money. Stainless steel is the best and most expensive. Cunifer (Copper/Nickel/Iron) comes in a close second because of price, it won't rust, and it's super easy to flare. I'm in the rust belt so I appreciate any brake line that won't rust.

When I see coils of brake line installed in a car it tells me, these are pre-made lengths, always purchased too long, and someone was trying to make it shrink. No, make your lines exactly the lengths you need.

Tools are simple and inexpensive. For bending and flaring Cunifer, you only need a cheap Harbor Freight Inverted Flaring Tool, a pair of bending pliers,
a tube cutter and a hand reamer (drill bit) for the inside of the tubing. After practicing three ends you will have a good feel for the tools and the tubing. After that, it's the same procedure over and over. - Dave

01-14-2016, 08:34 PM
Don't forget to use a double flare end.

Why: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BcUGBdY1zWQ

How: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgXdI-dIec4

01-20-2016, 03:47 PM
Well,,the saga continues. Even though my 65 had a 64 style brake booster on it, I ordered a 65 brake booster. It finally arrived and one of the studs that the MC slides on was bent over flat and the pushrod for the MC was just dangling loose.
Oreilly is getting me another one.
The 65 unit is considerably larger than the 64 one. Guess my question is, will the 65 unit be a direct fit, or were the brackets that bolt to the firewall different from 64 to 65?
I already have a 65 type MC, was just waiting on the booster.