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Re: E-brake adjustment? / (bit long)

Dan Hamren wrote:

> Hi Guys-Just a quickie...   my e-brake barely works.  Where is the
> adjustment screw?  More questions to come! bare with me! Also it was
> nice meeting all of you (whom I meet) this weekend.  It made me feel
> good after buying the coupe sight unseen to have the 20v guys around
> it checking it out saying how nice it was.  There are a bunch of
> things it need however! (3B?)  And I want to make a proper post later
> when I get home, gotta jet be back soon Dan Hamren

Errr  Dan...

Proceed with caution.  You say that your e-brake barely works.
Don't rush to adjust the screw....First make sure that the e brake cams
on the rear
calipers actually work . I had a similar feel to my CQs handbrake,
having to pull it
higher and higher, with little or no resistance, in order to set the
emergency brake.

I did the following last Sunday...

E-brake off, car in gear, front wheel block by a wheel chock, jack up
rear of the car by using the subframe as a jack point.  Place jackstands
on either
OF THE CAR_ before lowering the jack and getting under the car!

Under the car, follow the e-cable to the rear calipers...they attach to
a cam which also
has a circular spring held in place by a slot in the cam and a 10mm
bolt.  The cam is
attached to a shaft internal to the caliper.  This shaft, in turn,
applies mechanical pressure
on the rear caliper piston.

That shaft is not protected externally by a boot and tends to collect
rust.  The rust
prevents the spring from tensioing the cam, which in turn gives little
or no
feedback to the handbrake- hence the "out of adjustment feel".
I carefully compressed the
spring and removed it, then pulled the e-brake cable out of the cam
slot.  I found
that the cam could barely be moved when I gripped it with a pair of
I liberally sprayed Wurth Rost off around the cam shaft and worked the
back and forth to it's limit stops repeatedly.  I let the Rost Off soak
in for a while,
then moved the cam.  I did this repeatedly over the next few hours,
taking breaks
to perform other maintenance.  Before I reinstalled the spring, the cam
was easy
to work back and forth- now the spring was able to apply tension and
feedback to
the handbrake.  It only takes a few clicks to now set the brake.

I will repeat the procedure again this weekend, and then apply some
grease to the exposed part of the cam shaft.

I had a similar, but worse problem with the TQW- Setting the ebrake
would cause
the drivers (left side) rear brake caliper to freeze the caliper piston,
and I would
half to get under the car with a pry bar and, err hammer, to "unlock"
the cam.
It turned out that the e-brake cam shaft  was too corroded for me to use

the above method, and I ended up having to install rebuilt rear
Ray Tomlinson helped me replace the old and install the rebuilt
We liberally coated the cam side of the shaft, and the other side of the
where the shaft barely pokes out of the caliper body, with high temp
brake grease.  I intend to put this on the list of yearly "maintenance"

Interestingly enough, both on both cars, the driver's side rear caliper
was in
much worse shape than the passenger side- I expected the opposite, as in
US, most of the road crap and puddles tend to be on the right side of
road, towards the shoulder.


-Peter Schulz
1990 CQ
1991 200 TQW