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53 commander pedal wont keep pressure

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  • Brakes: 53 commander pedal wont keep pressure

    hi guys just joined after lurking for a little while. just picked up a 53 commander 4dr for free a few months ago. i just replaced all brake lines, master cylinder and rebuilt all 4 wheel cylinders and have been bleeding it like crazy but cant get the pedal to feel right. if i pump it up the pedal gets hard, but if i let off of the pedal for a minute it goes back to the floor and i have to pump it a few times for it to get hard again. my question is what am i missing. there are no leaks. and i am getting no air from any of the 4 bleeders. is there a certain way the lines have to go into the hill hold assist valve? does the main line that comes from the master cylinder have to cross under the master cylinder to the hill hold valve instead of above it like it is currently ran? any help much appreciated. thank you!!
    Attached Files

  • #2
    You are not done bleeding yet! The hill holder is the hardest part to bleed, and it must be done. I have always found it easiest to bench bleed it before mounting on the car, but it seems you are past that now. There is a little roundhead screw on the top of the hill holder for bleeding. I have always replaced this screw with either a hex head or an allen head screw, as it is near impossible to get the factory screw to turn with a screw driver. There is only about an inch of clearance, and you can't see anything. Good luck!

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    • #3
      Originally posted by NEWSTUDIE View Post
      if i pump it up the pedal gets hard, but if i let off of the pedal for a minute it goes back to the floor and i have to pump it a few times for it to get hard again
      Sounds like you forgot to adjust the brakes before bleeding them.
      Jerry Forrester
      Forrester's Chrome
      Douglasville, Georgia

      See all of Buttercup's pictures at https://imgur.com/a/tBjGzTk

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      • #4
        I agree with Jerry. I did the same thing this past spring. Got good pedal then it went away. I needed to mechanically adjust the brakes...then all was right with the world.
        sigpicGood judgment is the result of experience; ...experience is the result of bad judgment.

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        • #5
          thanks for fast replies fellas i will look into both ideas. is there a special procedure for initial adjusment on the self adjusting brakes my car has?

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          • #6
            Please keep in mind that in addition to a correct initial adjustment of the front & rear eccentrics, there is a bucket of levers, forks, clips, springs, plungers etc. required per the Chassis Parts Catalog and Shop Manual to make these "Automatic" adjusting brakes work properly and to get good "Pedal".
            If your car is like many I have seen, after 50 years or so, not all of them remain.
            StudeRich
            Second Generation Stude Driver,
            Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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            • #7
              If you are going to keep this car, I would strongly recommend that you purchase the shop manual and parts catalogue.

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              • #8
                I concur with Tex (Flashback) in that you need to buy a shop manual. They are invaluable. Mine is covered with grease and dirt from my filthy hands. I refer to it constantly. I believe the manual says that you should tighten up the adjuster until the wheel drags and then back it off about 8 clicks. This is one of those areas that is a try-as-you-go thing. The real important thing is consistance. Make sure that you adjust all the wheels THE SAME. That, in my mind, is the important part.

                Bottom line is that screwing around with old iron is one of the most satisfying things in my life. It is as satisfying as picking up wood at Home Cheapo and turning into a nice piece of furniture. DAMN, I love old Studes!!
                sigpicGood judgment is the result of experience; ...experience is the result of bad judgment.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Doug Bowen View Post
                  I concur with Tex (Flashback) in that you need to buy a shop manual. They are invaluable. Mine is covered with grease and dirt from my filthy hands. I refer to it constantly. I believe the manual says that you should tighten up the adjuster until the wheel drags and then back it off about 8 clicks./Cut/
                  So as not to confuse anyone: Thanks for trying to help NEWSTUDIE out Doug, but this procedure applies only to 1954 to 1966 Models, since his is a 1953 with the old style eccentric Adjusters and the Automatic Adjuster Plugs in one shoe in each Drum, the adjustment is way different.
                  StudeRich
                  Second Generation Stude Driver,
                  Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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                  • #10
                    Wow!...I forgot all about those. My '49 Champion had those. It has been too long since I have had my hands on them. Thanks for the clarification. Good catch.

                    NewStudie...Like Rich said!

                    Doug
                    sigpicGood judgment is the result of experience; ...experience is the result of bad judgment.

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