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Username Post: Cylinder Disk Brake Conversion Kit        (Topic#329175)
Jack Crain 
Contributor
Posts: 813
Jack Crain
Loc: Wichita Falls, Texas
Reg: 07-24-11
10-04-15 04:05 AM - Post#2579999    

In the beginning.......


Disk Brakes are a much more reliable system than the original Huck brakes so I decided to install the kit. My 46 Fleetmaster would pull to the right if I stomped the brakes and a couple of time that put me in a sticky situation. I ordered the kit from Chevys of the 40s. ECI Hotrod Brakes actually make up the kits and CO40s just sell them.I didn't realize what all I was getting into when I put the order in. The original brake system had a single chamber master cylinder, which has the pivot mounts for the brake pedal and clutch pedal. In the old days, a single chamber MC supplied brake fluid to a single brake line that branched off to the 4 wheel cylinders. The kit I was installing needed a dual chamber MC, one for the front disk brake circuit, and another for the back drum brake circuit. So, a new Master Cylinder was required. And, since the old had the pivot mounts on it, I had to buy an adapter to mount the MC to. I suppose that I could have changed to a firewall mounted MC like more modern cars, but then I would have had to find a "Hanging" brake pedal and I'd still have the clutch pedal to worry about. ECI also makes an adapter for new MC that let you keep your brake pedal and clutch pedal in their original places (thru the floor) so I ordered one of those, too. While doing my shopping, I spotted a set of rubber brake hoses that were "made" for the conversion so I ordered a set of those. The conversion kits only come in 5 holeX4.75 wheel pattern so a couple of new rims were required. I did some googleing and found out that when you mount your master cylinder below the level of the calipers, you need a 2 psi residual pressure valve. Supposedly, that keeps your brake fluid from draining from the calipers to the MC when you park on a hill or let the car sit over night. Next I discovered that the rear drum will lock up and skid the rear tires unless you add a proportional valve to the rear circuit. The drum circuit also requires a residual pressure valve but it needs a 10 psi valve.
I called ECI and asked about a MC. The said their kit used a 68 to 76 Mustang Disk/Drum Manual master cylinder. Their MC adapter was made for it and most of the Mustang MC's had the 10 psi valve built in to the rear port. I bought a MC locally and went to the car. I was planning on using the original brake lines, just separating the front from the back at the first "T" in the system Well, 70 years under a car with dirt, grime ,grit and rust made me decide to run new lines. Back to Google! I found that most brake lines are 3/16 " tubing so off to AutoZone for a roll of tubing and a flaring kit and adapters and tube nuts.
So far, the conversion has cost me over $1300, that includes the kit, MC adapter, new Master Cylinder, rubber hoses, 2 new wheels and tires, proportional valve, 2 psi valve, a 25 foot roll of brake line and fittings, flaring kit, and shipping charges.



 




Jack Crain 
Contributor
Posts: 813
Jack Crain
Loc: Wichita Falls, Texas
Reg: 07-24-11
10-04-15 05:47 AM - Post#2580009    
    In response to Jack Crain

The work begins.......

First thing, jack up both front wheels and place jack stands under the car to make it safe. You will be under the car a LOT and you wouldn't want it to fall on you. I only have pictures of the right side installation of the rotor and caliper. Sorry!

First, remove tire and roll it out of the way. Next, pop off the dust cover covering the outer wheel bearing. Remove cotter pin, nut, large washer, outer bearing and remove the hub. Just pull it straight off the spindle. Set the big nut and washer off to the side, you will re use them. Next, disconnect the rubber brake line at the frame where it connects to the steel brake line.
Next item is the four bolts that hold to back plate to the spindle. You don't need to remove the brake shoes, just leave them on the back plate. The top 2 bolts just go thru the back plate and spindle and are held in place by split lock washers. They are TIGHT!!!!!!!Use a Box End wrench on the nuts and a socket on the bolt heads. Did I mention that they are TIGHT!!!!!! You may have to get a wire brush to clean off the nuts so your wrench will get a good fit. If you round off one of these, well, they are TIGHT!!!!
After you get the nuts off, leave the bolts installed. The two bottom bolts go through the backing plate, spindle and the steering arm. They have castellated nuts with cotter pins. Oh, and these two are even tighter than the top two.
After you get the two lower nuts off just slide the backing plate off. You may need a little penetrating oil on the blots and work the with your ratchet to get them out. The steering arm might fall when you are pulling the plate off so be ready for it. Lay the plate down and remove the bolts. There are 1/4 " spacers between the brake shoe setup and the backing plate. Save these spacers and one of the longer lower bolts (the ones that held on the steering arm) and set it aside, you will need it later. If all worked out so far it should look like this:



Clean the spindle, front AND back. Next take the right hand adapter, the big 3/8 metal bracket and place it on the back side of the spindle. Use the spacers that came with the kit on the top two bolts. These go between the bracket and spindle, NOT under the head of the bolt. Using one of the original lower bolts, attach it to the front lower hole in the spindle then thru the steering arm. Use the new supplied bolt in the rear hole of the spindle. Note: Make sure ALL four bolts are thru the spindle and bracket and steering arm before tightening any of the nuts. Install supplies nuts on new bolts, and use 2 of the OLD spacers under the nut of the OLD bolt in the front of the steering arm. Tighten all nuts really tight.



Note the spacers under the TOP bolts and none on the bottom bolts. In this picture, it looks cocked a little but it is straight




Next, CLEAN the spindle of ALL dirt and grease and install machined bearing and seal adapter onto spindle. This is a pinch fit and needs knocked on. DO NOT damage the adapter, your inner bearing race and grease seal rides on this. I used an oak 2x2 about a foot long as a drift and pounded it on. It will take a while. Make sure you get it ALL the way home.



The rotor comes with a inner race for the original bearing. Since this is a mod, you will need to remove the inner race from the rotor. After the old is removed, install the new one supplied in the kit. Make sure you bottom out the inner race, pack the bearing with grease and install the supplied grease seal






Slide the rotor onto the spindle, pack outer bearing with grease, install outer bearing, supplied large 1/4 spacer, your old large washer and your old nut. Torque to around 30 ft lbs and leave cotter pin out for now. Make sure the rotor turn freely with little effort by hand.
Remove the two slider pins from the caliper, install caliper on bracket and install slider pins. Tighten slider pins. NOTE.... With new pads and new rotor, it might be a bit hard getting the caliper in place., work on it but do not use grease, it will go on.







Try to turn the rotor by hand, It will be stiffer with the caliper on and you will hear a dragging sound but if you can turn it by hand you should be ok. If it can be tuned by hand, install cotter pin. and new dust cap.(AutoZone has them).

1946 Fleetmaster 4-dr Sedan with '57 235
Fenton Dual Exhaust and Intake
Dual Carter Webbers 2 barrel Carbs
HEI ignition
Front Disk Brake
T-5 Tranny


 
Jack Crain 
Contributor
Posts: 813
Jack Crain
Loc: Wichita Falls, Texas
Reg: 07-24-11
10-04-15 06:41 AM - Post#2580021    
    In response to Jack Crain

Replacing the master cylinder ........

This is using ECI adapter sold by Chevys of the 40s and a 1976 Mustang Disk/Drum Manual Master Cylinder. Sorry, no pictures.

Remove the bolts on the forward side of the firewall where both the brake and clutch pedals come through and attach to the arms going down to the pivots.. Save all hardware. Crawl under car, remove brake line from back side of old master cylinder. Disconnect the clutch linkage and spring from clutch arm, and remove brake spring. Remove two bolt holding master cylinder to frame. I have dual exhaust on my 46 so I had to pull the old master out from the back. If you have single exhaust, maybe it would be easier from the front. Slide the master back, turning as necessary to allow the brake and clutch arms to clear all the other crap in there. Once you get it out, remove the grease fitting from between the two pivot mounts on the front of the master. Take a 10-32 screw, about 1 and a half inches long and screw it into the hole down in the master in the hole where you removed the grease fitting. Pull straight out and a small piece that locks the pivot arms in will slide out. Make note of which arm goes in which hole. Set them aside. install boot onto new master cylinder and slide in new push rod. Use two bolts to attach the new master to the adapter. The holes are slotted so adjust the new master so it/s not in a bind. Tighten two bolts. Install brake and clutch arms in adapter. There isn't any facilities for greasing so I just coated the arms with grease before sliding them in. The method for holding the pivots in, in my opinion, is chintzy at the least, but it's their kit so I used their method. They use two small pieces of steel flat stock that just sort of rides on the end of the arms. One side is too far away and the other is too close, so I would up bending the long one and just held the short one in place and tightened up the bolt to keep it in place. It's pretty Mickey Mouse but it works. With everything tight, crawl back under the car and reinstall the new master, adapter and brake and clutch arms in reverse order of how you removed the original. It helps to have someone guide the arms up through all the crap. Make sure you get the brake switch lever in the right place. I had to reverse the mounting bolts, that is, I slid the bolt up through the frame and put the nuts and washers on top.
Reattach the pedals, connect the brake arm to the push rod. When you adjust this rod, the one that actually goes into the master cylinder, make sure that there is a little bit of free travel before it actually touches the piston inside the master cylinder. Now, you reinstall brake spring and clutch rod and spring.
About this time, I decided to cut an access panel in my floor, because when I looked into the existing servicing hole, I could only see about 1/2 inch of the lid on the new master cylinder. I extended the existing hole towards the back about 5 inches. Now I can get to the lid to service the fluid.
New Master cylinders require "Bench Bleeding". The kit that came with my new master was just a couple of plastic plugs you screw into the outlet ports and pump the brakes until you stop seeing air bubbles in the reservoir. The hole I cut in the floor worked out good for this, I could hand push the brake pedal and observe the fluid/bubbles.


1946 Fleetmaster 4-dr Sedan with '57 235
Fenton Dual Exhaust and Intake
Dual Carter Webbers 2 barrel Carbs
HEI ignition
Front Disk Brake
T-5 Tranny


 
Keith_Knox 
Moderator and "15th Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 5532
Keith_Knox
Age: 75
Loc: Napa, Ca USA
Reg: 04-02-00
10-04-15 07:43 AM - Post#2580026    
    In response to Jack Crain

Thanks Jack.

1948 Chevy Fleetmaster Coupe Purchased 6/2010. Stock with rebuilt 52 216 installed May 1966
1996 Chevy Monte Carlo Donated 6/16
2013 F150 Crew Cab


 
Jack Crain 
Contributor
Posts: 813
Jack Crain
Loc: Wichita Falls, Texas
Reg: 07-24-11
10-04-15 07:47 AM - Post#2580027    
    In response to Jack Crain

Brake Lines, Bleeding and adjusting......


I removed all lines EXCEPT the rubber line at the rear axel and the rear axel steel brake lines.
Starting at the front right, and using the old line as a template, I cut, bent and flared a replacement. Since I was using the existing front "T" block, I had to use 7/16x24 nuts with 3/16 hole. AutoZone to the rescue. Good thing I went that way because I couldn't find and of the 3/8x24 tube nut anywhere in town The rubber lines that were "Made for this kit" turned out to be regular flex lines for disk brakes so I had to use reducers to go down to male 3/8x24. I made up the other front line and for the supply line I ran it along the same route as the existing supply line except instead of running from "T" to mid "T" I made a 90 degree turn about 10 inches, along the transmission cross member, installed the 2 psi valve and then on to the rear outlet of the new master cylinder. In this installation, the Master cylinder is installed backward from what it is normally designed for. So, the back is really the disk side and the front goes to the drums. I made a line from the front port along the cross member to midway between the trans and the frame on the right hand side. I bent a piece of 3/16x1 inch flat stock 90 degrees about 2 inches each side to mount the adjustable proportional valve to. I bolted the angle to the top of the cross member and attached the prop valve with the knob pointing up. Next, was a line made to go back to the rubber line at the rear end.

I rechecked and made sure all lines were tight then filled the master cylinder to begin the bleed process. Since I was by myself, I fill a plastic bottle with a couple of inches of new brake fluid, stated at front left wheel put a clear plastic tube over the bleeder and started the bleeding process. On the drum circuit, I screwed the prop valve in all the way, I don't know if that was required or not but it worked out good. I crawled back under the car to check for leaks and all was good.

I had a bit of trouble with the front left wheel getting hot and locking up but a neighbor came to the rescue. It seem that sometimes a new rotor and new brake pads don't always play nice together. I don't know if what we did was proper, but it worked. What we did was take one of the pads and sanded just a tiny bit of the friction material off so it wouldn't be so tight.
To adjust the proportional vale, Screw it all the way in, then back it all the way out, counting the turns. Then turn it back in HALF of the turns. This is a starting point. After braking in the new disk pads ( Google it, there are a few different ways) then you can get down to adjusting the prop valve. Basically, you stomp the brakes and make sure the back brakes don't lock up. A dirt road is good for this. If they don't lock up, turn the prop valve in one turn and try it again. Keep doing this until they lock up then back off one turn.

I hope this helps anybody that plans on doing this mod. The cost wound up being more than I planned on but at least now I know I can stop a lot shorter than I could before the mod.

Tomorrow I should have a list of what you could bye from the local parts house and knock a lot of the price down. PM me if you're interested.

1946 Fleetmaster 4-dr Sedan with '57 235
Fenton Dual Exhaust and Intake
Dual Carter Webbers 2 barrel Carbs
HEI ignition
Front Disk Brake
T-5 Tranny


 
Jack Crain 
Contributor
Posts: 813
Jack Crain
Loc: Wichita Falls, Texas
Reg: 07-24-11
10-04-15 07:49 AM - Post#2580029    
    In response to Keith_Knox

No problem Keith. I just hope this helps some one.
And I wished I had more pictures.

1946 Fleetmaster 4-dr Sedan with '57 235
Fenton Dual Exhaust and Intake
Dual Carter Webbers 2 barrel Carbs
HEI ignition
Front Disk Brake
T-5 Tranny


 
RoadRocker 
"3rd Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 169
RoadRocker
Loc: Kentucky.
Reg: 12-13-13
10-07-15 11:58 AM - Post#2580848    
    In response to Jack Crain

Glad you got it done Jack. Nice write up on the job. I did mine almost 2 years ago mainly for dual master as I have lost all brakes 3 times over the years do to rusty brake lines and dirt roads. Man things cost more when economy improves same kit and most everything else, chassi engineering bracket for mustang master I Know I had less than $600 in parts

48 sports coupe
63 C-10 long fleet
13 Tacoma double cab longbed
15 Volkswagen Golf TDI Sportswagen

Been down most all the roads nowhere left to go??


 
Jack Crain 
Contributor
Posts: 813
Jack Crain
Loc: Wichita Falls, Texas
Reg: 07-24-11
10-07-15 01:28 PM - Post#2580862    
    In response to RoadRocker

$400 was in new wheels and tires, $120 was shipping. So I guess it wasn't so bad.

1946 Fleetmaster 4-dr Sedan with '57 235
Fenton Dual Exhaust and Intake
Dual Carter Webbers 2 barrel Carbs
HEI ignition
Front Disk Brake
T-5 Tranny


 
RoadRocker 
"3rd Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 169
RoadRocker
Loc: Kentucky.
Reg: 12-13-13
10-07-15 04:22 PM - Post#2580894    
    In response to Jack Crain

Jack, I did not count wheels / tires cost was close to same enjoy your new brakes

Tom

48 sports coupe
63 C-10 long fleet
13 Tacoma double cab longbed
15 Volkswagen Golf TDI Sportswagen

Been down most all the roads nowhere left to go??


 




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