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51 Champion: Use Copper Crush Washer on Front Hose

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  • 51 Champion: Use Copper Crush Washer on Front Hose

    Good evening, all. I just replaced the first wheel cylinder on my 51 Champion and found a copper crush washer on the ground. I don't know which end it came from on the flex hose.

    The body parts manual says there is one washer per car (sounds like on the rear brake hose only)?

    Anyone else use a crush washer on the front brake flex hose, and if so, does it go next to the wheel cylinder or on the upper end where it joins the hard brake line?


  • #2
    The copper washer goes on the wheel cylinder end of the hose.
    Always use new ones. They go on all 4 cylinders.


    59 Lark


    • #3
      The copper crush washer goes where the threaded end of the hose screws into a fitting, or directly into the wheel cylinder. "usually" where a flex hose joins a hard line, there is a female inverted flare fitting built into the flex hose, and no crush washer is used.

      Copper crush washers are supposed to be used once only. The act of crushing them work-hardens the copper, and it may not seal again properly if reused. Having said that, you can anneal (soften) a copper washer by heating it red-hot, and allowing it to cool slowly in the air. The BEST way to do it is to use a new washer, they're cheap. The worst way (short of no washer at all) is to reuse the old washer without annealing it. Annealing a used washer should be regarded as "less worse", not "second best". Something to be done only if the right part is unavailable.

      Banjo fittings, like you find at the master cylinder, typically use 2 sizes of crush washer, and a third size is used where the hoses meet the wheel cylinders (on those wheel cylinders lacking a flare fitting). Three sizes should cover most any post-war Studebaker car. Big trucks my need more and bigger ones.

      I have a compartmented plastic box with assorted sizes in my parts stock. If I am buying components, like cylinders or hoses, that are meant to be used with crush washers, I also buy a few extra washers. Nice to ave on hand.

      Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands
      Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands


      • #4
        CU is easily annealed. Heat Cu red hot and drop into a small container of alcohol. Cover the container to snuff out the fire. Cu is clean and dead soft. If you drop the red hot CU into H20 the cu is annealed but oxidized.


        • #5
          There are three washers on Studebakers, two on the front wheel cylinders and one on the hose on the left side of the differential housing. There are also two on the master cylinder, but if that hasn't been touched, there is no problem. The washers aren't supposed to be reused, but I've done it in the past with no problem when I didn't have a replacement washer handy. Bud