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Re: Public Thanks (Brake Rebuild 101)

Osman Parvez wrote:

> Look for an update of the completion of the project. We documented the
> rebuild very well, so there may soon be a page that you can view on it.
> Igor, the list may appreciate your comments as well.

Here are a few after thoughts:

> First the Front Wheels were so overtorqued they broke three sockets
> (including one Mac Impact wrench socket).

First I broke my half-inch drive short 17mm 12-pointed Craftsman, then -
the Osman's, after which I drove the car to a friendly garage, where the
tech used an air impact gun and cracked in two halves like a walnut his
short black impact-duty 17mm six-pointed MAC. He finally broke the lug
bolt loose by hand using a huge Ingersoll-Rand ratcheting breaker bar. 
A Midas monkey-lad who did this to the Osman's car should have had his
impact air gun shoved up his rectum with a subsequent trigger release.
BTW, Osman, I have a feeling that some of the steering wobble under
braking on your car could have been attributed to the _horrendous_
torque on the lug bolts and the distortion of the hub/brake disk.

> would be replaced). The next problem was that the Right rear brake line
> was rusted together tightly. That took a very long time to free (and I
> think a testimony to Igor for he was able to free it after about an hour
> of gently manipulating it).

That was indeed rather challenging. The RR union (where the rubber brake
line joins the steel one) had rusted solid. The flare nut had frozen to
the steel line and any attempt to turn it caused the whole line
spiral-twist torsionally. I almost envisioned me breaking off it trying
to free it. What I did not tell Osman then and what I can admit now, if
it indeed broke off I would have taken the line off my own 200 and
installed into his car given the fact that he lives some 5 hrs away from
me and he had to get home that night. But man, would I have hated
bleeding the both car's brakes after doing this! Especially since I bled
mine only a fortnight ago.
Fortunately we got lucky and the line nut had finally yeilded.

> Favorite Quote of the experience:
> " Eff it, lets just cut the damn thing! What do you think?" -I.K.
> :)
> (note: quote taken out of context).

OK, here's the context (I don't want to look like a butcher after all
When I realised that the union was not gonna get unscrewed counter
clockwise, with Osman's permission I cut the old rubber brake line and
freed the flare nut by screwing it _on_ clockwise. This prevented a much
more costly repair if I would've broken the steel brake line. The rubber
line was to be replaced by a SS/Teflon one anyhow.

> Then I rounded the Carrier bracket bolt on the LF of the car.

Two mistakes have caused it, folks:
1. Never ever use a 12-pointed sockets on something _this_ heavy duty,
torqued to such a high torque. Use a 6-pointer _only_!
2. Never try to undo a high-torque bolt with a breaker bar _not_ at 90
to the socket. Remember, you have only one attempt - if it fails and you
round the head off - you're in for an excursion to an
acetilene-torch-equipped shop.

> Then, the
> darned thing wouldn't bleed properly. We had all sorts of foaming and
> bubbling going on.

Unfortunately for Osman, I broke my self-made pressure bleeder a week
After unsuccessfully running 1.5 L of DOT-4 Pentosin brake fluid through
the sys we resorted to the wasteful gravity bleeding with a help of a
big a$$ hammer to tap those stubborn little bubbles out (per an advice
of Mike Zamikhovsky). These efforts have brought the brakes back. It
never ceases to amaze me how many excellent solutions, accumulated
during servicing rally cars in the field with limited tools at hand and
on a tight time table, Mike has up his sleeve. Thanks a million, Mike.

> That's right, Igor spent almost 12 hours helping a friend rebuild his
> brakes.

And yet another hour soaking in a hot tub (otherwise risking to be
evicted from the house). Although I must admit that a bottle of cold
Mackeson Triple Stout, leisurely consumed in a soapy tub, provided a
totally sybaritic reward for such a long Audi repair day.

> 1. New SS lines all the way around
> 4. Replace your stock rubber brake lines after 10 years. Just do it.
> Mine were within 2 weeks of failure. Go SS, but make sure you buy the
> proper lengths. Some of the kits may be too short.  Mine cost $88.00

Things to note, folks, on a 200TQ (and perhaps on most type-44
1. OEM front brake lines are 405mm. Their direct replacement is a 16" SS
2. OEM rear brake lines are 240mm. Their direct SS replacement (from
GPR) broke on my car after 2 years. I attribute it to installing the new
and stiffer Boge Turbo Gas shocks and a subsequent increase in the ride
height. Another possible reason is the fact that unlike the OEM rubber
lines, the SS/Teflon lines do _not_ stretch. On my car the RR line broke
the SS braid almost completely and the line rupture was within a week or
so. Mike Zamikhovsky has gone through the same exact rear SS line
rupture on two of his quattros and as per his advice I installed the
longer (270mm or 10") SS lines in the rear brakes, first on my car a
fortnight ago and yesterday on the Osman's car. Mike's excellent source
of custom, made to order, SS lines is:
Earl's Performance, 317-241-0318, ask for Wally. The price is about
The '89 200TQ takes the p/n 63071010 hose for the rear. It is 10" long
and has one male and one female end, 10x1mm thread on both, the hose
itself is "dash-three".
The front hose is 16" long, with the same ends as the above. I don't
know the p/n. Osman, do you have it on your invoice? I'd like to put it
in my DB.

> 2. Rear Calipers rebuilt and functioning, including formerly stuck
> e-brake arms.

The rear e-brake levers _can_ be freed without the need to install the
heavier duty Granada springs. In fact, my inability to get the said
springs in the States turned out to be a blessing in disguise: I was
forced to fix my own calipers. Whereas the springs with a higher module
of torsional elasticity might overcome the friction of the rusted shafts
in the e-brake levers, they would mask the problem rather than fix it.
The proper way to do it is to free the shafts of rust and make them
operable again. Everything is done from the outside, no need to
disassemble the caliper. Of course, in the Osman's case I disassembled
both rear calipers completely and rebuilt them, but on my own car I've
done it without a rebuild a fortnight ago (there was no need to rebuild
mine: I rebuilt all 4 calipers 2 years back and I also have a habit of
replacing the brake fluid at least once a year).
The caliper is secured in a vise, the outer spring is removed, the 10mm
turn-limiting bolt is removed and the frozen e-brake lever is lifted up
by approx 10mm with a pry bar (it will not go higher).
Spray the rusted shaft of the lever with a _very_ good rust
loosener/lubricant and work it up and down for a few minutes. Clean the
rust off and repeat the procedure. The goal is to free the lever so that
1. Twists freely CW-CCW under your fingers.
2. Returns to the turn-limiter by itself, without the outer spring, only
under the action of the internal spring inside the piston.
In both mine and the Osman's car the e-brakes are now completely
operational with the stock springs on the calipers.
BTW, Osman said that Midas charged his farther for rebuilding the
calipers two years ago. I saw those calipers _inside_ and out. If that
is true then my name is Igor Stravinsky. After I saw what was done to
the Osman's car, on my $hit list of auto butchers Midas has approached
Sears and Jiffy Lube.

> 3. New Boots for Guides all the way around.

Half of all little rubber boots on the guide pins on Osman's car were
torn. As a consequence, the respective guide pins (yokes) were
completely dry and rusted solid. Since the yokes did not move the
calipers stopped to float and as such had caused a very uneven wear on
the brake pads. I freed the yokes, cleaned them out and lubricated,
after which obtained a verbal commitment from Osman to replace them as
soon as an opportunity presents itself. 

> 4. New Bleeder Valves all the way around

Another observation: 3 out of 4 valves on his car did not have rubber
caps. I was barely able to brake them loose with a 6-point 11mm deep
socket! All 3 of them had the outer thread, the inner bore and the side
spout on the bottom tip filled with solid rust. I had to drill the rust
out to facilitate the flow of brake fluid! Folks, make sure that all 5
bleeder valves (including the one on the clutch slave cylinder) wear
protective caps at all times.

> 5. Replace bad wheel bolt (ruined by me previously).
> Lessons Learned (pay attention)

Osman's your old brake lines, pads and rotors deserve to be nailed to
the panopticon on the walls in my garage with signs like "Midas fixes
brakes GOOD!" or "The school of kamikaze is now accepting applications"

> 9. A penny saved is not always a dollar earned when it comes to car
> maintenance.

A side observation: about 3/4 of the time was simply wasted on fighting
the car instead of fixing it. If it were not neglected, i.e. would get
some preventive attention and the consumables were replaced routinely
(brake pads, fluid etc.), we would've been done by 15:00 or thereabouts.
Oh, and if it were not an Audi, after 10 years of life in the Upstate
New York climate and at 177kmi it would've been pronounced legally dead
a long time ago.

> 10. Have a Quattro-repair buddy on speed dial for emergency advice.

Osman, you were walking around with a camera documenting the procedure
for a future web site - did you take a pic of me bleeding your brakes
while wearing my hands-free head set with a 900Mhz clipped to the belt,
with Mike Zamikhovsky on the phone instructing me to smack the hell out
of your caliper with a hammer? With a bleeder in one hand and a hammer
in the other, elbow-deep in brake fluid. :-)

Igor Kessel
Two turbo quattros