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ZondaC12

my 1938 special: the chronicle

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Probably the best cleaner for the project you're doing right now is Berryman B12 Chemtool. NAPA carries it, as should any decent auto parts supply. It is very volatile, so use only in well-ventilated spaces and away from any open flame or heat source. I'd also recommend using disposable nitrile gloves (avalilable at almost any pharmacy in boxes of 50). The Chemtool will take ALL the oil out of your skin and your fingers will dry and crack. The gloves are also handy to keep from completely trashing your hands when doing any dirty chores on the car.

Cheers,

JMC

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Hey Zonda, Where do you stand with this now? Did you try to rebuild the pump? And how are the brakes coming along?

JD

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hey, sorry i havent posted in awhile.

i ordered a rebuild kit from Bob's last week, still hasnt come yet. i know theyre in Cali, but i still figured maybe id get it by yesterday. i dont go back to school until tues., so if i comes monday ill do it then.

the brakes are DONE. two days ago i installed the rear right cyl and lines going to it. master cylinder is in now also. its ALL DONE.

now all thats left is to fill and bleed. i was thinking of doing that this weekend. i read in hemmings (jan 06 issue) the commentary on brake fluid, while the writer was addressing a reader's question about a brake emergency light in his 69 tbird. he says he doesnt like how DOT5 can aerate easily and make bleeding hard etc, it is somewhat compressible, etc. i happen to have two bottles one unopened, the other opened very recently, of dot3&dot4 (thats what it says on the bottle) valvoline SynPower synthetic fluid. the writer said that "unless youre storing your car in a museum for 20 years or in a tropical jungle, the glycol based fluid wont do any damage". im thinking ill just go with this stuff. dot5 is available at autozone etc right? or not? if so, should i get it anyway? i know this is one of those issues that people cant seem to come to a decision about, so i personally see the HCC writer's opinion very much and and it seems like a good idea. so just tell me what you think and ill decide, lets not have a long-winded discussion.

i googled "bleed brakes" and came across this: http://www.teamscr.com/brakes.html its for modern Saturns, and it mentions "the pedal will drop to the floor" but a tag came with my new M/C saying NEVER stroke the piston more than an inch because the rear seal goes past the filler hole this way and fluid will leak past and out the end of the M/C that the rubber boot is on. so obviously this isnt good for me. what is the process i should go through, for <span style="font-style: italic">this</span> car? oh, and i came across these when i happened to glance at one of my dad's "Spitfire and GT6 magazine" magazines the other day : http://www.speedbleeder.com/ maybe i should wait and buy some of these? or is it actually easy enough to do the normal way?

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Once again this is an area where I don't have a lot to offer. I have always used DOT 3 because I have never completely changed a system such as you have done. I would think the silicone is the best since you have everything new. And all I know for sure is you NEVER mix DOT 3 with the silicone. Perhaps you ought to call the manufacturer (or rebuilder) of the MC and get their recommendation. You certainly would not want to put in silicone and find you voided any warranty.

Also the rebuilder may have a good plan for you on the bleeding. If you can't go more than an inch on the pedal, which seems very restrictive to me, then there must be some procedure that's required. Did you adjust the shoes up after installing the brake drums? If not I can almost guarantee you'll go more than an inch on the first stroke of the brake pedal.

If the master cylinder allows the fluid to flow without pushing the brake pedal, then you can simply open the bleeders and fill the MC. When fluid comes out of the bleeders, just shut them If the fluid does not flow without pushing the pedal, you have to have two people to do this job.

JD

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well then ill go to dot5. i looked at the letters section of the HCC issue again and the person writing in actually mentioned on the side that everything went just fine, and the pedal was firm and everything etc. their only problem was that the warning light kept coming on. the mag writer diagnosed it as some check valve or sensor sticking, making the warning system think there was no pressure in the system, even though everything was working fine.

ill see about contacting kanter i guess, and ill ask if they rebuild/repro them or find out who does. in the meantime someone else may chime in here too. that sounds like a neat idea, just pouring the fluid in with the bleeders open, but the line goes up higher than the level of the master cylinder at some points so i dont think that will work. thanks though.

well even if i cant do this now im still frickin happy the system is FINALLY put together

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so i did some *GASP* cosmetic stuff today!

i cleaned up that dirty grille. i had a wire brush attachment i bought from a local Harbor Freight store, for my Dremel, and used that at first, on the right side. but, the wires were GONE by the bottom, maybe 1/32nd of an inch of wire sticking out all around. i have to see if they or any other place has JUST wire brush attachments. i got the thing in a package they had, it was $7, includes all of these other cutting discs, polshing wheels, etc. i JUST want a wire brush! it worked so well, and was so quick, only took like 10 minutes, but then i was forced to use this ultra fine steel wool i found in my garage for the other side, hence i only did ~2/3 of it because my arms were tired and it was annoying. but i couldnt and STILL cant believe how good it looks! nice pure chrome plating. it just gleams in the light. so beautiful. attached is a front view.

were gonna have a decent sized storm here tonight into tomorrow (is it just me or do these ALWAYS happen on sunday nights or nights that are the last night of a week-long school vacation? not complaining, it has caused a snow day before, but just seems weird) so maybe a snow day. im not getting my hopes up, i almost never do, but hey, you never know! if it happens, ill bet the fuel pump rebuild kit will come tomorrow, and kanter will be open so i can call 'em up. ill be working feverishly, get the brake system filled and bled, and rebuild that pump, maybe even pull the car out and run it (hasnt run in awhile). i really want to get it down off the jackstands, it looks real nice sitting at the height it sits normally, and being able to roll out and run it is nice too.

post-39688-14313787611_thumb.jpg

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other side, a great "before-and-after"!

i should mention this!!!!!: YES i did NOT do the top surfaces, i realized quickly that the brush wouldnt last long, i will do those surfaces when i get some new brushes.

post-39688-143137876116_thumb.jpg

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The Grill looks great. And the brakes look very good too. One thing. Check the travel on the front wheel flex lines. They both look tight to me. Is there enough room to turn the wheels lock to lock without stressing the flex lines?

JD

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Hey JD, I was thinking the same thing when I saw the pictures. They do look like they may be a little on the short side.

Paul, when you check those have someone else watch to make sure you don't pull them tight and damage them internally. Carl

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it may be the angle from which the picture was taken, because they are jsut fine. there is still a somewhat "S" shape to the hose, and it is as flexible as it is at any other position. (i actually just went out to check it hehe, stuff like that concerns me a great deal)

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Paul, I would post those pictures on the pre-war site, to see what other 38 owners say. I'm sure the line are flexible now but what about in a few years? What you want to be sure of is that you do not pinch the flex lines when turning the wheels lock to lock, which it looks like it will do eventually.

Was there another bracket further up the frame towards the front wheels such that you should run a short piece of steel line, reducing the distance between the steel brake line and the wheel cylinder?

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ok ill do that. but id just like to note that the original hoses i pulled off the car were only a little harder and stiffer than the new ones, and didnt show ANY cracks even when i bent them very far. (except of course the rear hose, that was destroyed). and they can move lock to lock without bending them severely.

but i will take some pics, at multiple angles, and post 'em in the pre war forum. better safe than sorry right?

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Absolutely. You may have it exactly right but sixpack saw the same potential as I did. Most of us have only our experience to guide us and one thing I know is this: There is no substitute for correct brakes. grin.gif

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oh and no there is no other bracket like you mentioned.

i was thinking too fast, forgot to add that, i wanna make sure i give you all the info you asked for, who knows, anything could be very important

alright im going to bed now, dead tired, im still not ready to go back to school, lol tongue.gif

and NO we didnt get a snowday frown.gif . doh. well the snow just didnt continue all that long. 2 hr delays are cool though.

and no fuel pump kit either. im calling bob's tomorrow to make sure it shipped out okay, etc. seems like 5 days shouldve been plenty of time???

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thaaaaaats right! today my friend came over and helped me fill and bleed the brake system. there was nothing like it when i pushed that pedal and it responded with a nice firm resitance. the pads grip good and everything.

the only hitch was two leaks, one at a union in the line going to the front right cylinder, and one coming off the two way splitter at the rear of the car. however both were about a tiny drop or two's worth on the threads. tonight i went under there and REALLY tightened both of em up, and i think ive stopped the leaks. even if they continue theyll be very small so much that it might actually make a drop on the ground, what once a month? i dont mind that.

that said, heres the cause:

ill admit some of the flares i made (with the excpetion of the front right line, both ends of it are factory flares) were sub-par. that is such a painful experience, i would often get frustrated and settle for a not-quite perfect flare, in fact most of them werent perfect. however i could tap em with a hammer and flatten the top a little to get it even, and file off the sides to get em round, and they seemed pretty decent. though it seems many of them held up fine! ill bet i just didnt tighten up the front right line enough, and hey, even factory ones could be imperfect! the rear one i think i made, although maybe it just needed tightening too.

so as of right now, the only problem i rather didnt expect.... the stoplight switch!!! rrrr, stupid little bugger. i have NO idea whats inside of it! so i have no idea what could be wrong with it. any ideas? i could just bleed off any pressure from a wheel cylinder, unscrew the switch, plug the hole with something, and replace the switch. can i get it at Bob's, Kanter, etc? (it IS the switch, by the way, if i short the contacts with a screwdriver, they turn on.)

but, a great day, and i HAVE BRAKES. how cool is that?

I also forgot to mention: fuel pump rebuild kit came on friday, Bob's sure did send it via fast mail, called em up and they lost the order or something, something about problems with the internet i think. but he said they had em in stock, and hed send one out immediately via fast shipping. so i dont blame em, nota problem. so i rebuilt it that afternoon, evening. that night, about 7:00, DARK outside lol, fired her up. i used my shop vac, pushing the fuel line into the crevice-nozzle a little, so it sucked the fuel through the line a little, somewhere i read its bad for the pump to run dry. so there was fuel at the carb i think, but it was cold so it sputtered and wouldnt start. the car has one of those little switches under the dash that prevents it from cranking, so i flipped it, pumped the gas to make the accel pump prime it (works nice! never tried it before so i didnt know). flipped the switch back, cranked and started up in a hurry. what a beautiful engine, huh?

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Guest imported_MrEarl

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">

but, a great day, and i HAVE BRAKES. how cool is that?

</div></div>

That't super cool dude cool.gif Congratulations !!!!!!!!

I know the feeling. One of the first things I had to do on Irene was to totally replace the power brake set up that the previous idiot owner had removed and replace with a manual brake set. Boy that was fun. A 54 power brake system is one of the most complex yet worse systems of the 50's.

So congrats and keep up the great work. I've really enjoyed reading and keeping up with your "chronicle". You should be very proud of all your achievments.

Happy wrenching,

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Stoplight switches are a common item to go bad on these older cars. Bobs have them for about 10 bucks.

If you have a cell phone I would call Bobs and actually talk to them as opposed to the internet. Two reasons, you can pick up some good information as they begin to understand what you are doing. And orders that way dont get "lost". Also they are very friendly people with a good knowledge base.

Keep up the good work.

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