Thursday, September 25, 2014

Caliper Day

Unfortunately, the weather forecast for today called for "rain, heavy at times". Not good for car work. The rain did hold off until mid-morning, but my plans already were in place for the rain.

Curse you, rain!
Some quick errands in the morning and a trip to NAPA and I was ready to tackle the caliper rebuilds. I don't think I like dual pistons very much, especially ones that are so small. Took a lot of cursing and what not, but I finally got the things done.
First, the trip to NAPA was for their Sil-Glyde. I had read about this stuff on the forum and figured it would be my best best. Maybe I should try this on the windscreen install? However, TRF back-ordered the windscreen seal, so that will be a while yet. That's my biggest complaint with them...you don't know if something will be back-ordered until your order has been processed.

Slippery stuff, but easier to work with than that "personal lubricant"
The first thing was to get the inner rubber seal into the piston cylinder of the caliper itself. This was easy. Then, I lubricated the pistons and inserted them. At first, I left them pretty far out, but over time it became clear that fully inserting them was the way to go. The seal between the dust boot and the caliper body was the biggest pain. I used a lot of the Sil-Glyde...

Directions...Use sparingly. Haha, silly Sil-Glyde.
and finally got it worked around. I had to take a small pair of needle nose pliers (with jaws taped) to help me spin the seal around the retaining ring of the caliper. Doing this along with gently pulling the seal outward and then releasing it and it eventually threaded itself completely around. I would not have been able to do this without lots of Sil-Glyde.

Sealed to caliper. Piston had to go all the way in (unlike this picture) to get the seal piston to mate.
The next painful part was mating the seal and the piston. I compared the new and old pistons and it seems that the new piston's groove for the rubber seal was more narrow than the old one. However, doing dry fits confirmed that it would work. But, it wasn't until I full inserted the piston (even using a C-clamp) and used lots of lubricant that the mating was successful (wait, mating...lubricant...what kind of post is this?!).

Seal to piston mating
However, this seal seems very easily disturbed. There were several times where just handling the caliper caused this seal to dislodge. Hopefully, once the pads are in and the whole thing is installed on the rotor it will be tight enough in there to prevent this. I'll have to check on it periodically to make sure until I'm confident that it will continue to hold.

So, after all was said and done, I am pretty happy with it. I attached the new hoses along with new copper washers to the calipers and they wait, on my workbench, for installation. I've already told the wife that she may have to help me bleed the brakes...we'll see how that goes, but I don't really expect any issues...unless I have them, of course.

Pliers' handle just keeps the pads from falling inward.

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