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Topic: The Catbox files... (Read 133450 times) previous topic - next topic

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The Catbox files...
this is a long twisted tale of my issues with my car.  Kev asked in another thread to tell him "what is wrong with my car any way?"

  it has never stopped correctly since i got it.  it had all new drum brakes on it, but the rears didnt work at all and on of their e-brake cables was hung up on something so it always dragged in the drum. 

  being the smart guy that i am and taking some advice from my wifes adopted dad i got the money togther for a completly new brake system,  four wheel disk brakes.  i bought at the same time all new poly bushings to eliminate the dreaded "super shimmy", stainless braided brake lines, 7/8" sway bar for the front, dropped struts to lower the front, lug studs for all the wheels, and a new set of seat foam that is currently flying around the garage in a holding pattern for its turn.

  so a couple of years ago i wanted to have a shop day and myself and two other fine gentalmen one being Presidente and the other was Donald or "Badbug" here, started the process of getting the frontend fixed up or down.

  we started by removing all of the brakes sway bar and struts.  that is alot of stuff to be hanging off the front of your car.  in order to get the brakes on we, well mark (while we helped) had to disassemble the struts and springs.  we got that all done and then came time to reassemble, well the new strut housings dont have a provision to hold the brake line like the factory unit does.  so we cut the tab off the old housing and welded it to the new one in the right spot. ok that problem is fixed but how to get the springs compressed to reassemble the strut?  we tryed different things and then decided to do it right and went to the store and rented a spring compressor to do it the right way (now i own this tool).  we assembled the strut and the bearing didnt turn very well at the top so we got to read the bently and then take it all apart to do it again only this time with the bearing the right side up this time. 

  so we got the struts togther, then the disks on, then the calipers in place and then comes the wheel.  the wheels that were on the car when i got it are aftermarket drum brake only wheels, i found out why as the interfear with the caliper.  it would have taken about a half inch stack of washers on each of the studs to get the wheels to turn freely.  well crap what to do now?  we decided to test our good work after we bled the brakes.  so i'm spinning the disk hub and mark steps on the brake and......nothing.  i can still spin the hub.  so we spent like another year bleeding the brakes and that has no luck so mark in his wisdom takes the hard line out of the caliper and has me step on the brakes and nothing comes out.

Master cylinder!?!?!?!?!!!!????
  while me and mark are on one side of the car donald is on the other fighting with his pressure bleeder trying to figure it out.  Donald has a slight hearing problem and cant hear anything that i and mark are saying.  so we take the caliper off and put the wheel on with the open line and a simple cap over it to keep the crud out.  we explain it to donald and he doesnt believe us until we had the other side like ours. 

  we lowered my car down and it looks real good to me.  i start it up and pull out of the garage and jump on the brakes and it stops with the one functioning rear brake.  end of shop day.

  so we loaded it onto the trailer and drug it home to its cocoon. 

  fast foward some time and mark calls me out of the blue,  he wants to know if i want him to come over and help me put in my master cylinder.  well yeah i do i just have to clean the embarrasing garage a little before you can see it...  so we put the new master in and mark had a spare four lug wheel laying around from when he was slummin it as he is a self proclaimed five lugger, i put that on and my spare tire.  well the front was now skippy but the back was still not right. 

  so more time passes and we have a shop day back in june and there was a good turn out this time.  Mark, Tony, Ryan and myself were there although my wife was in the hospital at the time so i was watching my kids alot of the time, sorry 'bout that .  any how the rear brakes were installed by, well this is a re-acuring theme Mark.  the sump plate oil leak was fixed by Ryan B and tony was a good moral supporter and he did some time watching the kids while i was hunting for tools or helping where i could, thanks to all you guys.

  anyway after the rear brakes were on we tested them out too.  no grabby grabby.  well this is gettin old was the thought running through my mind.  so we tried to rebleed it and rebleed it to no avail. it is just not gonna do it.  so we put the tire s on and put it on the ground.  thats when we (i say we and mean they just cause i was there) started to run the new exhaust i wanted to execute. 

  i had bought a extractor for the car and never was happy with the way it was.  the collector went from about 2 1/4"  and pinched down to just
1 3/8" at the exit.  well that just wasnt gonna cut it. it was a huge restriction in the exhaust, especially above anything but an idle.  so i went to Baxters(its an american version of DIP) and bought a set of header extensions that go from 2 1/2 to 2 1/4, just the right size.  i cut the extractor off where the extension would fit nicely and that night it was fitted and tack welded in place.  the rest of the exhaust is just a U bend of the 2 1/4" variety and a Magnafolw muffler with a 2 1/2" core for no restriction.  it will have a slight turn down at the end to get the gasses away from the car and thats it.  Matt and Rob were here last night and liked the way it sounded so i'm happy.

well thats it for now as i'll keep this updated as i get it done, Peter B.
The worst performance mod is whatever you're limited to because you convinced yourself (or others) that anything bigger or faster was too extreme for a street car.

  • Kev
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The Catbox files...
Reply #1
Hey Catbox, have you tested the long brake line that goes to the back of the car?  Also, make sure the bleeders on the rear brakes are above the brake line input.  I had that problem with mine.
"Our Faster is Faster than their Faster" as seen on a local motorcycle company truck...

The Catbox files...
Reply #2
What was wrong with the Rabbit??  :twisted:  :twisted:  :twisted:  :lol:

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The Catbox files...
Reply #3
i loved it too much too talk about yet... its to soon  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:

i have missed that car since i had decided to sell it, yea thats right before i actually sold it i missed it.  that car was awesome and my introduction into VW's.
The worst performance mod is whatever you're limited to because you convinced yourself (or others) that anything bigger or faster was too extreme for a street car.

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The Catbox files...
Reply #4
Quote from: "Kev"
Hey Catbox, have you tested the long brake line that goes to the back of the car?  Also, make sure the bleeders on the rear brakes are above the brake line input.  I had that problem with mine.


the long line is the next thing on the agenda before i swap outhte master again.  another thought is that its blocked up at the tee in that line also.  i checked the bleeders the other day and i thought they were on the bottom as i didnt look very hard and its been a long day at work.
The worst performance mod is whatever you're limited to because you convinced yourself (or others) that anything bigger or faster was too extreme for a street car.

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The Catbox files...
Reply #5
i have no clue what im talking about in the case of a bug but is there a perportioning valve of some sort?? just trying to throw things out to check... hope it come to ya sooner or later :?:
current cars: 2005 Jetta GLI 1.8t 6-spd stage 2, 1976 Jeep CJ-5

Past cars: 1993 SLC corrado, 1969 std beetle, 1965 beetle, 1984 jetta GLI

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The Catbox files...
Reply #6
It's almost like the master cylinder is not moving enough fluid to fill the larger resevoirs in the new rear calipers (as compared to the little brake cylinders that were removed).  There may very well be an issue with the long brake line inside the car. DIP has them in stock (just replaced the one on the Baja in my driveway).  I don't have any experience with rear disk brakes so I am reaching deep into knowledge archives.
Mark

1967 Convertible
1967 Ragtop (really)-SOLD IT!
1967 Standard Bus
1974 Thing
1977 Rabbit

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The Catbox files...
Reply #7
i will be checking the next time i work on it, the long line, the tee fitting in the long line making sure that they are moving good fluid.  as the passenger side does not move as much as the drivers.  orientation of the bleeders, but now that i have slept i remember that they are on the bottom i believe because of the parking brake cables?.?  maybe taking the calipers loose and bleeding them in the correct orientation andf then bolting them back up? 

i am also ordering the caster bolts and special sway bar bushings tonight so i can fix the caster issues of a lowered super.  more fun for me!!!!!
The worst performance mod is whatever you're limited to because you convinced yourself (or others) that anything bigger or faster was too extreme for a street car.

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The Catbox files...
Reply #8
yes, the bleeders MUJST be on top, or you cannot get the air bubble out...

I learned this the hard way after having paid someone (Mike at WagenWerks) 200 smackers to install them, and he just could not get them working...  Gerald at DIP told me about the bleeders needing to be on top, as soon as I changed them it was perfect!
"Our Faster is Faster than their Faster" as seen on a local motorcycle company truck...

The Catbox files...
Reply #9
did you remember to bench bleed the master cylinder before installing it? If not you'll have a TON of air to get out of the system.

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The Catbox files...
Reply #10
i was told that only V-8 guys need to do that as there is no real way to bench bleed it cause it has no resivoir attached to it unitll its in the car.

and yes we bled it till the cows came home.
The worst performance mod is whatever you're limited to because you convinced yourself (or others) that anything bigger or faster was too extreme for a street car.

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The Catbox files...
Reply #11
It is very difficult to bench bleed a Beetle master cylinder due to the fact that the resevoir is not attached.  We did bleed out the master cylinder (once installed) before bleeding the rear brakes.  I do not recall the bleeders being on the bottom of the calipers though.  I would have to check, but that issue did not stand out as a problem at the time of install.
Mark

1967 Convertible
1967 Ragtop (really)-SOLD IT!
1967 Standard Bus
1974 Thing
1977 Rabbit

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The Catbox files...
Reply #12
Quote from: "Kev"
yes, the bleeders MUJST be on top, or you cannot get the air bubble out...



do you have the E-brake kind on your car?  cause it looks like they need to be in the place they are with the brake cable coming in on the bottom side.  this arrangement places...errrr crap i can treemember what i saw the other day and the gerage door needs to be open for me to see its again.  if it is not a million degrees when i get home i will go and take a picture of it.  i havent been able to take any pictures as my little girl stole the picture card reader, but we have another way now.
The worst performance mod is whatever you're limited to because you convinced yourself (or others) that anything bigger or faster was too extreme for a street car.

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The Catbox files...
Reply #13
Peter,

My "extra" kids go home on the 12th. After that I think I'll have alot more flexability on the weekends to help out.

Also, if you have a Super towbar... I could tow the car to my house and be able to work on it after I get home from work. I would be more then happy to work out your brake problems that way. I'd have access to all my tools and the time to work on it at my home as well.

If you feel comfortable with that. Let me know. I'd be happy to help.

~Ryan
RyanB
 
66 Baja

Certified Project addict

The Catbox files...
Reply #14
STOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!STOP RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Before yopu go one step further,or spend one more cent on parts. Let A PRO look at it. Brakes are what I do EVERY DAY!!!!!!!!!!!! There usually isn't a problem with a master driving a larger cylinder....Disc brakes only move about 1/32nd of an inch between fully released and fully clamping........Please let me take a look at it before any more money is spent, you're all probably missing something?????I'm available this Sunday, let me know Catbox.......Rob...