Brake refurb

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Brake refurb

Postby davel » Fri 17.05.2019, 12:51

I would like to renovate the brakes ,now 24 years without major refurbishment, could someone advise what I need to purchase and from which supplier.The rear discs were replaced 20000 miles back. I presume -new hose set,master cylinder,& disc pads. Would I require new calipers or new seals,the metal brake lines would depend on condition I presume.
Thank you
David
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Re: Brake refurb

Postby dapinky » Fri 17.05.2019, 18:28

This is a very subjective (and emotive) question.....

.... some will say to ditch the OE callipers and replace with 4-pots (Hi spec), others will say that OE ones are fine.

I think that the OE ones are good enough IF they are working correctly (but I admit that they can be improved by replacing with something of a better design if you want to do that).

As to what needs replacing - it's impossible to say without looking at the condition of what you have. Personally, I have replaced eveything (Master cylinder, rigid pipes, flexi pipes, proportioning valves, callipers, pads and discs) - but others have 'just' cleaned the discs, fitted new pads and greased the sliders on the callipers.

Sourcing parts depends on what you need, and where you live (UK/USA/Other) and how quickly you need the parts - also if you are doing the work yourself or getting someone else to do it.

Basically, everything is availlable, but some parts are MUCH cheaper by sourcing them in USA and getting them shipped (rear callipers/repair kits) - others can be got from any good motor factors (pads/front discs/pipes) as they are common to Vauxhall/Opel/Daewoo cars of the period.
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Re: Brake refurb

Postby Saltire » Fri 17.05.2019, 19:56

I did this last autumn.

After *much* thought and consultation on the forum, I went with essentially the standard set-up. My rear calipers were in a poor state, but I managed to get a set of new rear calipers from the sainted Brit-Car-Nut in the US - Rock Auto was no longer holding stock at that time. I couldn't get new front calipers at all, so I stripped my existing ones (which weren't in a bad state, had them recoated, and rebuilt them with new seals, springs, bleed nipples, etc.

I have the separate hub conversion at the rear, so I fitted new Mintex discs and pads all round, with new braided Goodridge hoses (Merlin Motorsport) and new handbrake cables as well. Brake lines were replaced everywhere they needed it - which was basically everywhere from the drivers seat backwards!

My master cylinder was in good shape, and the replacements available at the time weren't of such good quality, so I opted to remove it, give it a really good clean and refurbish, and replace it. I finished up with new fluid (obviously), and a comprehensive bleed which entailed much swearing. When I first finished, I had a very firm pedal, but with quite a long travel. It's better now, but still not perfect, so I may well re-bleed them at some stage. The brakes themselves, however, are great, and I will keep them that way with a regular annual service.

Pads and discs came from eBay, hoses from Merlin as stated, and most of the rest from SJs.

I reckon the whole job cost me between half and two thirds of what it would have cost to fit PNM front brakes. Mind you, I've never had a problem passing the MoT on brakes; if I had, I might have been more tempted to go down the replacement route. However, I really prefer to keep the car original, and I'm happy I've achieved that without compromising safety.

Hope that helps.
Jonathan

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Re: Brake refurb

Postby Rambo » Fri 17.05.2019, 21:00

As Dave and Jonathan have already eluded, the OEM set up is fine as long as you are capable of keeping it all in tip top condition

I'm not, so I've gone down the route of Hi Spec fronts and PNM rears (VW Mk 4 calipers) I have, however, kept any original parts so that if/when I sell my cars they can be returned to stock

PS you could always try Jamie's rear brake upgrade viewtopic.php?f=41&t=26878&p=351412#p351412 Looks good :smt023
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Re: Brake refurb

Postby davel » Sat 18.05.2019, 18:31

Thank you all for your replies.
Just a general renovation i think, where would I buy caliper parts -seals etc
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Re: Brake refurb

Postby dapinky » Sat 18.05.2019, 20:01

It depends how long you want to wait, how much you want to pay, and how how good you are at searching the interweb.....

Everything you need is availlable from SJs or SW Lotus (and others) - at a bit of a price premium, but very easy to deal with....

.... The Front callipers are Vauxhall parts (and Opel, and other USA GM cars) - so pistons/seals/sliders are common to some Astras/Cavaliers etc so availlable from lots of UK companies (Big Red calliper rebuilds are a big supplier on the net)

The rear callipers are Oldsmobile cutlass supreme (and others!) of the era (1990) - so rebuild parts are cheap in USA (Rockauto.com), and even with shipping are a bargain in UK..... just remember that the NS & OS are swapped over as the Lotus has a following calliper whilst the GM cars have a leading calliper (or vice versa!), so a RH Oldsmobile one will fit the LH of the Elan. (relevant as the pistons are 'handed').

Pads and discs can be got either from rock auto as part of a shippment, or locally (Vauxhall front)

Front discs are Vauxhall/Daewoo/Opel - Apecs DSK518 is the part number to seach for (or cross reference) - shouldn't be any more than a tenner each deliverd from fleabay etc.

Rear discs are part of the hub and only fitted to the Elan - so if yours are really bad (and wont clean up) then you'll need to source some replacements (used or new) or try and find a rear hub conversion which use standard Vauxhall discs (DSK117).
Dave

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Re: Brake refurb

Postby davel » Sun 26.05.2019, 11:55

Thank you for the information,I've been away, so have not had a chance to do any more. Would a seal kit for the calipers be sufficient ,or after 24 years, 69k miles would pistons and pins be required. BTW Dapinky I am based in Mumbles , almost near neighbour !!
Thank you
David
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Re: Brake refurb

Postby Danevansgolf » Tue 28.05.2019, 10:04

Morning David.
Also another local here. Based in cardigan I am. I’ve just done a refurb on the rear callipers. Fairly easy. I did not need to replace the pistons as there were no scratches or scoring or rust on them. I’m a total novice at this , but found it to be fairly straight forward. Hardest part was to get the seal over the pistons. Good luck. Need any help, just give us a shout.
Enjoy Daniel Evans
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Re: Brake refurb

Postby GaryVM100 » Sat 20.07.2019, 02:58

In the you tube lotus Elan M100 Restoration Series "Front Brakes" he says that the front caliper parts are from a Vauxhall Astra 2.0 liter GTE, 8 valve. Which are Delco (1985 - 1989) calipers. Does anyone know if this is accurate? I don't want to try to order them from Brakeparts.co if they are not what we need.
He also said that rebuilt front calipers are available from Brake-eng.com...has anyone tried these? Is there any place in the US that sells the correct parts? I've had the car for 20 years and my right caliper piston blew out.
Thanks for any help that you can provide.
Gary
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Re: Brake refurb

Postby lotustonybassplayer » Sat 20.07.2019, 07:50

Hi, as your in the us complete calipers are available from rockauto part no centric 14149007 - 14149008 listed under pontiac lemans 2.0 1989 about 30 dollars each. I have these on my car, cheaper than a refurb kit !
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Re: Brake refurb

Postby NewLogik » Mon 29.07.2019, 03:38

I'm still not happy on how my current OEM brake works. Fluid have been flushed and replaced with DOT4, all 4 calipers works fine however, I think that proportioning valves might be bad as it seems to brake way more in front that in rear if at all... That said, I have no proper way of testing. I've seen quite a few members replacing them with different options and as I want to keep as OEM as possible the car, I'm still not sure how what I will do to make sure I get better brake performance.
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Re: Brake refurb

Postby NewLogik » Wed 31.07.2019, 17:31

NewLogik wrote:I'm still not happy on how my current OEM brake works. Fluid have been flushed and replaced with DOT4, all 4 calipers works fine however, I think that proportioning valves might be bad as it seems to brake way more in front that in rear if at all... That said, I have no proper way of testing. I've seen quite a few members replacing them with different options and as I want to keep as OEM as possible the car, I'm still not sure how what I will do to make sure I get better brake performance.


Any advices ?
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Re: Brake refurb

Postby Saltire » Wed 31.07.2019, 20:11

I have the standard brake setup on my car (as does pinky), and I’m personally very happy with its performance. Last autumn I did a full refurbishment, including pads, discs, seals and fluid, and I expect to do a mid-term overhaul again this winter. Like most similar setups, it repays regular attention

Like you, I want to stay as standard as sensible.

I would expect the standard setup to provide more front wheel braking compared with the rear, due to forward weight transfer under braking. This is more pronounced on an FWD car, which has more static weight over the front wheels in any case. Even if your proportioning valves were in perfect working order, you’d still find far more braking force at the front (one of the more knowledgeable forumisti will probably give you the design specs).

Is the problem only that you find you have more braking at the front, or are you actually having problems stopping before you plough into the bus shelter? If the former, I suggest you try asking another Elan owner to drive your car to see if it’s “normal” (putting your location in your profile would help). If the latter, I suspect there’s a more systemic brake system problem. :wink:
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