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-   1961 To 1963 Bulletbirds, Rocketbirds - General Technical Discussion (http://squarebirds.org/vbulletin/forumdisplay.php?f=24)
-   -   Replaced Master Cylinder (http://squarebirds.org/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=20646)

GeoffInCarlsbad 06-25-2016 05:34 PM

Replaced Master Cylinder
Today I replaced my Master Cylinder. Very straightforward, and followed the Shop Manual to a tee.

Why? Because after pressing the brakes, Left & Right Front Wheels would not completely release. Right wheel gets so hot it cannot be touched or handled. Spins with difficulty. It does eventually release when cold. Has Difficulty Releasing when HOT.

You have probably seen my previous threads talking about this challenge. I am simply posting pictures of my progress making this change. See below:

Here I have removed the Shock Tower Strut, removed the 2 nuts holding on the MC, removed the brake line from the brake line fitting, removed the stop light switch wiring, all per the manual:

Here is old MC on the bench. Note the rubber seal is still on the bore housing. I was able to reuse the same seal. I went to several auto part shops (O'Reilly, Pep Boys, Auto Zone) and could not find one. Catalogs didn't show them so I had to hope it worked, and it does.

Stop Light Switch and Brake Line Fixture removed and cleaned up.

Old v. New

Newly Installed and just filled with new Brake Fluid. Per the manual, I pressed the brakes serveral times to get the air out before tightening down the brake lines. Worked just fine.

The results were mixed.

I ran the car for about a 10 mile shake down. I stopped after about 5 miles, and the Right Wheel was very hot. Left Wheel was cool to touch (good). So the Left Wheel is acting properly, while that right wheel is not.

They only thing left to replace are the springs on that Right Wheel. Everything else is brand new (2x).

jopizz 06-25-2016 05:46 PM

It's possible that you have a blockage in the lines between the master cylinder and the wheel cylinder. It may not be allowing fluid back into the master cylinder fast enough. If you find that the hardware is good after disassembling the brakes then you may want to disconnect the lines at the master cylinder connecting block and the wheel cylinder and blow some compressed air through them. Also inspect the lines themselves to make sure they aren't crimped anywhere.


simplyconnected 06-25-2016 06:59 PM

Thank You for the post and your pictures, Geoff. I have to admit, I'm very confused. Didn't you invest in a power disk brake setup from Tom's? Didn't we discuss your ability to cut, bend and flare brake line?

I'm not criticizing but simply wondering, why did you buy a single-piston M/C?

Yes, you can beat this horse until you have the world's finest drum brakes but they will never perform as well as disk brakes. Wouldn't it be more practical to go in a forward direction and put drum brakes behind you, as all the auto manufacturers have?

I'm still scratching my head...

BTW, that rubber band around the M/C isn't used any more. I think the logic is, the M/C should not exert a hydraulic pressure on the booster and the booster should not pull a vacuum on the M/C so they allow atmospheric pressure between the two. Periodically we hear horror stories about boosters that are filled with brake fluid resulting in clouds of smoke coming out the exhaust pipes from this condition. - Dave

GeoffInCarlsbad 06-25-2016 11:50 PM

No, i did not go to Disk yet
For $33 & an hour's work, it was worth a shot to me to put in a new M/C. I did not want to start cutting and moving things around under the hood, like modifying my Shock Tower Strut, and try to stick to the original design. I would have to do that if I went to a dual resevoir M/C.

I found some material that some other guys put together saying it took them (two very experienced mechanics) 3 full days to do the conversion on their own using one of Tom's Conversion Kits, so that makes me skeptical.

You can probably double or triple that for a novice like myself, especially if I have to start fabricating new lines, modifying tower struts, etc. I have downloaded it, but haven't figured out how to post a link to it yet.

I am trying to save the $350 + $50 shipping(or $599 with new Brake Booster and dual resevoir M/C). Plus new materials for Brake Lines, and trying to modify under the hood for things to fit.

I don't expect Drums to work as well as disks, but for the casual driving experience, drums should be fine.

Something is not allowing those wheel cylinders to release well, and everything has been replaced/redone except the brake lines and the springs. I have inspected the outside and there are no kinks that I can see, and the hoses have been replaced 2x, so they should be fine. I like John's idea of blowing compress air through the lines to see if there is some thing clogging them up.

I am going to post some pics of my Left & Right Strut Bushings. They were a mess, and I replaced them today, the final pieces to the suspension re-build. All the bushings and ball joints are brand new, there is nothing left to replace there unless I start replacing the struts, sway bar, steering linkage, et al. Not going to do that any time soon.

I knew what I was getting into, so I am not disappointed, just frustrated I cannot solve this brake problem.

simplyconnected 06-26-2016 01:06 AM


Originally Posted by GeoffInCarlsbad (Post 102038)
...I am going to post some pics of my Left & Right Strut Bushings. They were a mess, and I replaced them today, the final pieces to the suspension re-build...

I fully expect that ended the, 'pulling to the right' situation that we discussed at length. Let's hear your findings...

GeoffInCarlsbad 06-26-2016 01:28 AM

Nope, still Jenks to the right.
Still jerks to the right.

Yadkin 06-26-2016 11:46 AM

I'm biting my tongue on the choice of a single master. Modifying the brace took me about ten minutes, and you can leave it off if you can't do that. A single is inherently dangerous. Please, please keep your E-brake system working perfectly.

Drums are OK if you know their limitations, mainly fade over extended use. There are pad materials available that can reduce that, and you may want to investigate that. I've had mine fade in mountain driving; use of a low gear with a good (stock) vacuum to use this big block to help slow you down would have eliminated the the fade that I experienced. I do a lot of mountain driving and don't want that limitation.

Let's focus in on the brake shoe set and adjustment. It's common for a beginner to put the shoes on backwards or just wrong- I've done it myself. Since drums aren't on a lot of new cars, even experienced modern mechanics can have a hard time. Look carefully at the diagrams in the shop manual and inspect your brakes accordingly. Post pictures of your set-up so we can double check.

I recently bought a pair of self-adjusters for my rear brake and they were entirely too short. The cross references in the Raybestos catalogue are wrong. I suspect those are not the only replacements which are not correct, so that may be the problem.

jopizz 06-26-2016 12:12 PM

He posted pictures is one of the other threads he has open. It appears that he has the shoes installed correctly. The self-adjusters appear to be correct also.


Yadkin 06-26-2016 05:35 PM


Originally Posted by jopizz (Post 102051)
He posted pictures is one of the other threads he has open. It appears that he has the shoes installed correctly. The self-adjusters appear to be correct also.


I didn't see that earlier thread. There were lots of response so figured y'all had it handled.

Yadkin 06-26-2016 05:37 PM


Originally Posted by GeoffInCarlsbad (Post 102055)

Look at that picture carefully relative to the one in your shop manual. The top spring on the right side should be on the lower hole. That spring is not under tension and is not retracting the front shoe. Same with the driver's side.

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