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1949 Commander Front Wheel Cylinder Mystery

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  • #16
    You want GL-1 which is mineral oil, with no EP additives, which over time will destroy the soft metal parts in the OD. You can get in reasonably small quantities by ordering it through NAPA.

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    • #17
      The only scary thing I see about those pre-made Brake Line Kits is, I don't see an option for the WHEELBASE and Body Type!

      All '47 to '52 Studebakers are NOT equal!
      They show it fitting 2 Doors, 4 Doors, and Land Cruisers, and there are even 2 W/B's of Commander Land Cruisers, '47-'49 and 1950!

      Unless when you click BUY, all those questions/options are asked about, there is NO way the lengths will be correct.
      StudeRich
      Second Generation Stude Driver,
      Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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      • #18
        Howdy All,

        So I got back to town and back to work on the brakes. Still waiting on the hub puller and BMC but the fronts came in before everything else!
        I was able to get the front wheels off and get behind the drums. Here are some photos of what I found and a photo of the car:
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        The brake shoes look in pretty good form to me but the wheel cylinders were very corroded. I did notice the new ones don't have the notch that's found in the originals and am wondering if there will be any issue with the
        top of the shoes and alignment. Also the "c" washers look a little worn as well as the lock clips for the hoses so will order new ones.

        Any particular thoughts on what is here/not here? Have done some research on the Brake fluid type. I plan to drive this quite a bit and it seems like the standard Dot 3 may be best in that situation. Would you agree? I have no
        problem getting under the car and bleeding the system once a year. Radio Roy you weren't kidding about the grease, used a tube and a half to get the front and rear back in order including leaf springs.

        Also I gave them the specific model, year and hill-holder configuration for the brake lines so here's hoping they got it right!
        Last edited by Youngstudedude; 06-06-2019, 01:48 PM.

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        • #19
          Go thru the entire system. Replace everything that touches fluid.
          The original shoes don't look bad to me.
          The baling wire for the shoe-stop is a no-no. I'm like WTF?
          Leads me to suspect anything safety related in that car.

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          • #20
            Hello Mrs Corbin,

            Thanks and will do. The bailing wire is to help pull the spring and wasn’t in the drum before.

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            • #21
              This may be a little nit picky but while I do agree with sticking to the original DOT 3, if you are not going through the whole system, you might consider DOT 4 instead of the original DOT 3. If you have ever experienced brake fade with one of your old cars you will understand why.

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              • #22
                Thank you everyone. Have definitely had that issue before. Will it be safe to put Dot 4 in hoses designed for dot 3?
                Everything from the BMC to the wheel cylinders will be new so can definitely put in whatever is best.

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                • #23
                  All hoses will tolerate all types of brake fluid. The issue is that DOT 5 will not mix with the other types, and most manufacturers recommend replacing all rubber parts when converting, so there's no residual old fluid hanging around. If all new components are new, then you can use any type fluid you want.
                  Skip Lackie

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                  • #24
                    Copy that, I’ll go Dot 4 on the new system. Is the conversion to a dual bowl very difficult? I did some research and cant find a commander from 49 with it installed. Would much rather have that safety feature and peace of mind than not. This model mounts on the inside of the chassis and the attached link shows one on the outside for a much later model (could be a totally different conversion)

                    http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...akes-questions

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                    • #25
                      Finally got the BMC, hoses, and lines in yesterday and have been going at it the last two mornings. The front end is done! Had to re-cut the passenger side line down to size as it was about 7" too long and was getting far to close
                      to some of the moving parts. I'm also going to make a new line going from the BMC to the rear T-fitting as the line that was provided came in two parts which seems like another unnecessary place that a potential failure could occur.
                      It took some real gumption (a ton of PB blaster and torch work) to get the bleeder screw off of the Hill holder unit but right now its looking pretty good and attaches well to the BMC. I flushed with copious amounts of alcohol to get the grime
                      out of the system.

                      Big Question #1: For the bench bleed would it be best to have the Hill holder unit on for the initial fill? Or is a separate bleed necessary and then the combo?

                      Big Question #2: Another thing worth mentioning, the auto adjusters on the front brake shoes are a bit worn and not quite engaging. It looks like they have been bypassed for a good while. Would it make sense to just adjust by hand using the eccentric pin as needed? There is good material on the shoes but the contact plug looks tired. Something to change when the shoes are K.O. or a must fix asap?

                      Thank you in advance for any thoughts/advice!

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                      • #26
                        #1 I have never bench bled a single master cylinder like you have. I guess you can, but it never has been necessary.

                        #2 You can't really "bypass" the automatic adjusters and get the brakes to adjust properly. I have had two Studebakers that someone had left out some of the adjuster parts and they both had problems. The system is really simple after you study it a bit. I recommend placing the parts on one of the shoes and playing with it a bit. How it works will become clear. The parts are out there. I recently did the fronts on my 52 pickup. Most cleaned up just fine although I did replace a few pieces with new.
                        Attached Files
                        "In the heart of Arkansas."
                        Searcy, Arkansas
                        1952 Commander 2 door. Really fine 259.
                        1952 2R pickup

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                        • #27
                          Thanks for the advice 52 Fan,

                          I spent more time with the adjusters and was able to get everything moving pretty smoothly again.
                          The contact plugs are definitely a bit lower than flush but will engage once they wear down a bit more.
                          Was able the get all the new lines made and hubs removed this morning. Looks like tomorrow will be the first test run!

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                          • #28
                            The plugs will contact the drum when they slide forward. They just won't have as much adjustment as a new one. Unless you drive the car enough to wear the shoes thin, you will probably never know the difference.
                            "In the heart of Arkansas."
                            Searcy, Arkansas
                            1952 Commander 2 door. Really fine 259.
                            1952 2R pickup

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              Originally posted by Youngstudedude View Post
                              Thanks for the advice 52 Fan,

                              I spent more time with the adjusters and was able to get everything moving pretty smoothly again.
                              The contact plugs are definitely a bit lower than flush but will engage once they wear down a bit more.
                              Was able the get all the new lines made and hubs removed this morning. Looks like tomorrow will be the first test run!
                              Did you install NEW plugs, or are you using the old ones?
                              RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.

                              17A-S2 - 50 Commander convertible
                              10G-C1 - 51 Champion starlight coupe
                              10G-Q4 - 51 Champion business coupe
                              4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
                              5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon
                              56B-D4 - 56 Commander station wagon
                              60V-L6 - 60 Lark convertible

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                Howdy Radio Roy,

                                After opening up the hubs to install the new wheel cylinders I saw that the shoes were in pretty decent shape. That said the self adjusters were pretty gunked up (bypassed in my previous post - ie.not moving)
                                Took 52 Fan's advice and fiddled around in there getting everything back and moving. Since they were the plugs that were already installed I assume they were redone previously w/o putting in new ones.
                                I did a 20 min cruise around the neighborhood and after carefully easing in on the new brake system I am happy to say it is working well and holding good pressure.
                                The brake lines ordered off of ebay were not the right size, some too long some too short but with a pipe cutter and double flare tool + some practice everything fit just swell.
                                Tomorrow will be the bigger test with a longer drive. I have a big ole stone on the petal overnight to let those hidden bubbles make their way out.
                                Last edited by Youngstudedude; 06-17-2019, 09:34 PM.

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