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Author Topic: '78 spider with ABS.....  (Read 4327 times)
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droptop
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« on: April 05, 2015, 05:16:52 PM »

ABS-olutely NO brakes, that is. Grin
I dug out my spider after around 11 months of slowly being hidden by clutter in my garage as I have a big run coming up in two weeks and I found it has no brakes whatsoever and an empty reservoir.
Now, what puzzles me most is the lack of any fluid on the floor or inside the wheels and since the car has a full duplex system as you all know, I can only surmise the fluid has leaked out the rear of the cylinder and into the servo since there is no trace anywhere under,around or in the engine bay.
I have a spare good cylinder plus rebuild kits for the M/C and all calipers but has anyone ever experienced this before?
I've had brakes fail on a variety of cars over the years, but usually while driving.
I suppose I'll start with removing the M/C tomorrow and seeing what signs, if any, are there of it leaking.
It would be the handiest situation if it is faulty
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rossocorsa
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« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2015, 07:30:07 PM »

Does the engine smoke a lot? Possible sign of brake fluid in intake
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droptop
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« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2015, 09:16:38 AM »

Does the engine smoke a lot? Possible sign of brake fluid in intake

That's a great point.
Excessive smoke would have left me thinking coolant but never brake fluid!
The exhaust is smoke-free except on initial start-up when there was an amount of whitish smoke but considering it has been idle for almost 11 months and I poured a fair drop of petrol down the carb to get it started without too much cranking, coupled with the automatic choke doing its "thing", I wasn't expecting anything but some smoke.
The car has been parked overnight with the reservoir refilled so I'll pay particular attention to the exhaust this morning.
By the way, I took out my spare master cylinder this morning, dropped it and one of the mounting lugs snapped off.
Homer Simpson couldn't have done it better
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rossocorsa
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« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2015, 11:31:00 AM »

I suspect white smoke could be a sign but perhaps someone with more experience could comment?
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peteracs
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Peter Stokes


« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2015, 04:53:48 PM »

Can you just undo the two nuts for the m/c and move it forward enough to view behind to see if fluid is there?

Peter
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droptop
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« Reply #5 on: April 06, 2015, 05:21:13 PM »

Can you just undo the two nuts for the m/c and move it forward enough to view behind to see if fluid is there?

Peter

I'll have to ascertain where the fluid is going by some means and since it's not pooling anywhere it has to be contained.
Removing the cylinder bolts and moving it should be a simple and quick operation (famous last words) and at least my suspicions will be addressed one way or the other.

Simply put, it's going SOMEWHERE!

On the plus side, the HiFi coupe is finally arriving at my house on Thursday so at least I'll have another cylinder to rebuild provided the gravity in my area behaves itself this time Cheesy
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droptop
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« Reply #6 on: April 07, 2015, 07:54:49 AM »

Right, pedal travel is ridiculous with any braking effort just before the pedal reaches the floor.

Now, my logic dictates that the problem has to lie within the master cylinder as if one piston was leaking, I'd be seeing fluid and the brakes remain consistent, if poor, so I'm going to simply swap the m/c today with my other spider which has excellent brakes with about 25% of pedal travel.

What's just occurred to me as I write this is to wonder if there are any wear or fail points on the linkage between the master cylinder and the pedal which would cause excessive travel?

I don't want to start chasing rainbows here as many years ago, I thought I could adjust the pedal ofmy Strada which resulted in the brakes locking on over time as pressure built up due to the pistons being unable to fully return
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peteracs
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Peter Stokes


« Reply #7 on: April 07, 2015, 02:20:11 PM »

If you take off the cover for where the servo is in front of the passenger seat you can see the action of the brake into the servo, hence if there is an issue with the linkage, however does not explain loss of fluid....

Peter
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droptop
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« Reply #8 on: April 07, 2015, 02:49:17 PM »

If you take off the cover for where the servo is in front of the passenger seat you can see the action of the brake into the servo, hence if there is an issue with the linkage, however does not explain loss of fluid....

Peter

I went one better and bit the bullet.
I treated myself to a lunchtime quit which equates to a 4:30 AM start tomorrow but it's proved worthwhile.
After removing the master cylinder, I found my missing brake fluid lying in a pool inside the servo.
I sucked out around 100cc with a mi-t-vac and I'm going to steal the m/c off my other spider when I've finished my coffee.
I had rebuilt the obviously faulty cylinder about three or four years ago and I've never been really happy with the brakes since.
I did the front calipers at the same time and while there was a marked improvement, the result never matched my expectations or my rose coloured memory of my much lamented 1976 fiat 132 which even by today's standard, had great brakes.
Hopefully I'll see a marked improvement in performance when I'm done this evening.
I have a new rebuild kit but I'm reluctant to spend time doing the job in case I repeat whatever mistake I made originally.
Anyway, I'm pleased to have discovered the leak and I consider it time well spent
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droptop
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« Reply #9 on: April 07, 2015, 09:22:32 PM »

Well, the brakes are fine at last and now I realise I never really had properly functioning brakes at all throughout my five years of ownership.
Now I need to get my main beams working and also the n/s sidelight/indicator unit has detached itself from the mountings in the bumper and is miraculously staying in place but rattling around.
Still, I'm happy to have proper brakes at last.
Next comes the autopsy to see exactly what I did wrong when I rebuilt the master cylinder originally so I hopefully won't repeat my errors, then I'll refit it on the donor before I lose the nuts and bolts!
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peteracs
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Peter Stokes


« Reply #10 on: April 07, 2015, 10:23:52 PM »

Hi Frank

Good to see you sorted it out and was not too painful....

Peter
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droptop
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« Reply #11 on: April 08, 2015, 07:07:27 AM »

Hi Frank

Good to see you sorted it out and was not too painful....

Peter

Aside from the knuckles Grin
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