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  #1  
Old 09-24-2017, 01:32 AM
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Default ABS Disc Brake Conversion Kit Problem

HI GUYS I havent been on the forum for a while. BASIC PROB WAS INTERMITTENT BRAKE PEDAL DROP NEARLY TO FLOOR..
I bought an ABS DISC BRAKE KIT, thru THUNDERBIRD HEADQUARTERS, to get the all impotant booster MNT brkt that clears the A/C plenum..so far so good...finally installed with the usual brk pedal custom fit car guy stuff.. SEEMED to work great THEN intermittent brk pedal drop...still some brks but almost to floor. and then ok after a couple pumps.typical M/C or hydraulic prob , right....this problem never showed up for me,, only when it went for the required Mech inspection for our Modified Collector Licence...the TECH HAD IT HAPPEN TWICE...of course FAIL!!! ..I finally looked at it on the hoist...no leaks anywhere.. pedal, now, was perfect...on a good look at the front calipers...they were marked up, or rubbed on the back side of the caliper casting...at full lock L or R one of the calipers was being pushed back by the SWAY BAR END LINK...STOCK sway bar..so of course the caliper/pad was now pushed away from the disc.and needed pumps to refill the caliper..
I cant believe that this hasnt showed up on this forum before..I am sure this kit has been used by members before me??? anyway easy fix JUST MODIFY WHEEL TRAVEL AT LOCK TO LOCK TRAVEL PADS.[there is about 1 inch to make up when the caliper touches the sway bar.]weld in new stop or install adjustable custom stop bolt or??? this will change turn radius, but , OH WELL...This could have been a major dollar bust by takin it to the LOCAL GUY, and havin him change all the hydraulic stuff, and still not "git er fixed" HOPE THIS HELPS SOMEONE ELSE...Intermittent low pedal is not always what it seems CHEERS TERRY

Last edited by BEVS BIRD : 09-24-2017 at 01:35 PM. Reason: stuff
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  #2  
Old 09-24-2017, 03:04 AM
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Terry, I understand your problem is that the OEM sway bar hits your new calipers. This has little to do with a firewall bracket, to mount your booster.

Something is terribly wrong with your setup. I use Scarebird spindle brackets to hold my S-10 calipers. Most of our members do as well. These spindle brackets position the calipers on the BACK SIDE of the rotors, far away from the sway bar ends. We get full range of turning radius with no interference and no welding is necessary. The only ABS parts I know of that work properly is the combination booster/master with firewall bracket and pedal hardware (ABS #9787). NOT spindle components.

JohnG and I were just talking about different Squarebird brake setups a few hours ago. I know there are kits available that use 2-piston calipers (Wilwood) that don't fit the same way as the S-10 single-piston calipers. Wilwood makes fine racing products but OEMs predominately use single-piston calipers and so do I because they are simple with fewer parts to go wrong. I have seen setups where the calipers are mounted on the front side of the rotors. This does interfere with the sway bars, so stay away from any setup with calipers mounted in the front.

I have heard of setups that completely abandon the sway bar (this is not good). My suggestion is, buy a beefier 1-1/8" diameter sway bar. I got mine from Lance Herrington at Thunderbirdsouthwest. I also suggest using Scarebird spindle brackets that are designed for your Squarebird OR 1959 Full Size Ford (Fairlane or Galaxie). It's the same part number. These brackets hold S-10 or S-15 calipers and pads that are available everywhere with a wide variety of pad compositions including ceramic and semi-metalic.

BTW, I heard nothing regarding a combination proportioning valve.- Dave
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  #3  
Old 09-24-2017, 01:28 PM
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Default Abs Brake Kit

HI DAVE...Yes .STOCK SPINDLES....FRONT mntd calipers/brkts/ and rotors, bearings /seals and hardware were supplied by ABS. Along with M/Cyl and related... THEY DO NOT SUPPLY COMBINATION VALVES so I bought a PV2K-1 KIT ....The booster package with their offset booster brkt fit great, with only slight tweaking needed. So... yes, I used combo valve/residual valves {2# front and 10# rear} ,all new brake lines etc in the brake upgrade. I found ABS VERY un co-operative with any info such as M/Cyl bore size, caliper make or brk pad part numbers.. THIS SET UP WORKS VERY WELL but at the start,,after reading this forum about the disc conversion..I was so overwhelmed by the amout of info I went looking for a fool proof kit..And was guided to ABS by this forum...NO WAY will I remove sway bar..These big boats need all the help they can get.. in 20 20 hind sight REAR MNTD calipers would be the smart set up..with readily avail S-10 stuff THNX FOR THE INPUT DAVE CHEERS TERRY
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Last edited by BEVS BIRD : 09-24-2017 at 01:38 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 09-24-2017, 05:34 PM
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Hold the fort...
Let's look at this a little closer...
This looks to me like you have mounted the wrong-hand bracket and caliper on the wrong side. This correction would put the caliper on the rear side of the wheel and your brake hose length wouldn't be so tight.

What ABS kit number is this? BTW, I have never advocated for using ABS spindle hardware.

Personally, I don't like using residual valves. Your M/C is mounted above the wheels so you don't need one. If you're worried about rear shoe wear, install self-adjusting kits for 11" brakes. A residual valve on the rear shoes will only keep the wheel cylinder pistons out and you won't know when the brakes need adjusting. This is important. A self-adjuster will actually turn the star wheel, which is what you want.
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Last edited by simplyconnected : 09-24-2017 at 05:45 PM.
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  #5  
Old 09-25-2017, 09:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simplyconnected View Post
Hold the fort...
Let's look at this a little closer...

Personally, I don't like using residual valves. Your M/C is mounted above the wheels so you don't need one. If you're worried about rear shoe wear, install self-adjusting kits for 11" brakes. A residual valve on the rear shoes will only keep the wheel cylinder pistons out and you won't know when the brakes need adjusting. This is important. A self-adjuster will actually turn the star wheel, which is what you want.
I agree completely regarding the residual valves. I tried running them on my ratrod, they failed in short order. I have a number of friends that have also fought and gave up on them. They really only help in situations where the master is lower than the wheel cylinders by keeping the pressure from draining back to the master. I have learned that the only time they really matter, at least in my case, is when you first start off in the car after it's sat for a bit. IE, a stop light isn't long enough for me anyway. I have just gotten in the habit of pumping the brakes up in the rod before I set off.

Cheers
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  #6  
Old 09-25-2017, 08:12 PM
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Default Abs Brake Kit Probs

HI DAVE... You really got me thinkin about caliper mnt brkts being universal L or R, and of course, putting the caliper front or rear..The very short instructions show , fwd mnt caliper. SO...I phoned ABS today..They said Fords usually mnt FWD side..But YES these brkts will go either way....As delivered the brkts were PRE ASSEMBLED, to fit FRONT side OF SPINDLE. ...I always follow instructions, specially from the Lady, so the rest is history.So bottom line is ...a closer check of full lock to lock would have saved this problem from getting to the dangerous stage.I AM going out now to change caliper positions ...I will report back..THANK YOU DAVE..OBVIOUSLY you are a guy with LOTS of first hand Knowledge...and not afraid to share it CHEERS TERRY ABS KIT #624 1958-60 THUNDERBIRD ...1958-64 FORD FULL SIZE CAR

Last edited by BEVS BIRD : 09-26-2017 at 02:53 AM. Reason: ADD ABS KIT INFO
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  #7  
Old 10-07-2017, 10:41 PM
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Default Abs Brake Kit Probs

HI GUYS FINALLY able to get to the bird...Pulled calipers and mnts..swapped all to rear side and re situated calipers brks..yes they do fit both ways and now ZERO PROBS WITH sway bar...I tried to post ABS instructions ...BUT no go...AGAIN the expert help here save me again THANK YOU DAVE....CHEERS TERRY
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Old 10-07-2017, 11:32 PM
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So many times, we hear of problems, offer solutions, then never hear another word. Terry, you are different. Our community thanks you for two things:
You followed instructions that were wrong (yes, sometimes the vendor doesn't know the real story),
then you corrected the problem and reported back.

THIS is information that is valuable to the next guys who do your ABS retrofit. Hopefully, they will see your posts before they start assembly.

Personally, I only promote ABS because of their booster/master/firewall bracket offering. I never have used wheel hardware from them because I like Scarebird spindle brackets and OEM calipers with SOFT pads. Having done several of these setups, I could see where your problem was. That's how experience teaches us to stay on alert.

Thank You for reporting your findings but more importantly, thank you for straightening out your brakes! I hope they are well-made and last you forever. Power disk brakes are THE BEST so enjoy, my friend. - Dave
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Old 10-11-2017, 05:16 PM
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I have the SSBC kit on mine.
The clprs do mnt twd the front. Had to get all custom with the swaybar. Another one of the MANY nightmares with this car.

The kit came with the adj-prop valve. Avoid that.
Since you're running S-10 clprs, the prop valve for 82-88 S-10 works well. Discon from GM, but widely avai aftermarket.

Needs disc in the rear too. Stops ok . . . But drive something made this century and the ol' TB just don't cut it - with as good as all these other cars stop.
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Old 10-11-2017, 08:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by byersmtrco View Post
I have the SSBC kit on mine.
The clprs do mnt twd the front. Had to get all custom with the swaybar. Another one of the MANY nightmares with this car.

The kit came with the adj-prop valve. Avoid that.
Since you're running S-10 clprs, the prop valve for 82-88 S-10 works well. Discon from GM, but widely avai aftermarket.

Needs disc in the rear too. Stops ok . . . But drive something made this century and the ol' TB just don't cut it - with as good as all these other cars stop.
John, you've been a great member of our site far longer than I have. This information you provided is truly valuable to anyone considering a disk brake conversion.

You were probably one of the pioneers to accomplished power disk brakes on a Squarebird when there were more Squarebirds around but fewer choices in disk brake kits for Squarebirds.

I'm sorry you had to deal with 'front-facing calipers' that interfere with the sway bar. More modern offerings steer clear of the sway bar (and lend toward upgrading the bar's diameter) by mounting the calipers on the back side of the spindle, where there is plenty of room.

I'm not opposed to disk brakes in the rear but I do believe drum brakes in the rear perform the same. They both have no problem locking up rear wheels. My wife's 2010 Escape came with rear drums that work great and our '59 Galaxie's rear drums will lock the wheels as well. I was happy to keep the OEM emergency brake setup.

Squarebirds.org is a wonderful place for examining your options before buying into a kit or a system. It takes everyone who has tried different systems to give the rest of us a good direction to follow considering price, ease of assembly, compatibility, turn around time and how well the product actually works. We have a lot to learn from the 'pioneers', before recklessly and blindly moving forward. - Dave
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