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Discussion Starter #1
I'm probably going to start tackling the rear brake pads and rotor on my Spider tomorrow. The thing I noticed was that the brake line going to the caliper is hard pipe. Do I need to pull the line when I remove the caliper or can it handle enough movement to allow me to change the rotor and pads while still being connected?

Also, are there any suggestions or tips or weirdness that might go on with a brake change that would make the Alfa any different then any other disk brakes?

Thanks (as always) :)

Eric

PS: Going to do the front brakes as soon as I get the pads from IAP so if anyone has any tips on that as well as changing the rubber lines to the braided SS ones please let me know.
 

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1966-2013
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You'll need to uncouple the hardlines from the calipers to get them off.

If you've got the little rubber dust boots on your bleeder valves, you can pop that over the end of the line when it comes off to help keep the drippage down to a minium.

Make sure the parking brake is not set when you try to get the rotors off, and there's the vague possibility you'll have to back off the p-brake adjusters to allow the rotor to slip off. (star wheel adjuster accessed through the hole in the face of the rotor)


Changing from rubber softlines to SS is a straight up swap, though you may want to spritz around the fixtures with some break free or PB blaster a day or so beforehand, just to make sure everything breaks loose instead of just breaking.

Unscrew the old stuff, screw on the new stuff. Make sure not to overtighten.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Well, I'm now waiting on new calipers. One of the rear calipers was lookin' kinda rough so I figured I may as well replace it. The front ones had torn seals so they're getting replaced as well.

Speaking of the front end of things... I'm trying to separate the rotor itself from the flat piece that seems to carry the bearing housing. I've removed the retaining screws and pounded out the wheel studs just to be on the safe side, but the thing is still stuck in there. What's the best approach for separating the unit? I don't have a press so I'm not 100% sure of the safest way to go.

Suggestions?

Thanks :)
 

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1966-2013
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Remove the hub, onnaconna the rotors are on the back side of the hub face.

Remove the dust cap on the end of the spindle then the nut behind it that holds the bearing in, pull off the hub, bearings and rotor together. **NOTE: the left spindle has LEFT HAND threads, the right spindle has RIGHT HAND threads**

There was no need to drive out the studs as the were pressed into the rotor, not the hub.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
That's the thing, the hub face is stuck to the rotor. The retention screws are out as well, but it's still stuck. I figured that I'd pop the studs out just to make sure they weren't corroded to the hub face. I guess I'll move to plan B. Set the rotor on 2 pieces of wood so that the hub face is pointing down and tap the back of the bearing carrier with a dead blow hammer (the rubber kind).

wish me luck :)

Thanks for the pointers Tifosi!
 

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1966-2013
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You might be better off putting the back side of the hub on a block and whacking down on the rotor.

At least that way if there's damage it'll be to the rotor which is easier and cheaper to replace than the hub.

Oh, if I remember right, there's two sort of tooled in notches opposite each other on the hub where it abuts the rotor that can be used to put a chisel in. (at least I seem to recall there being something like that there)

Still, I'm really surprised it didn't just flop off once the screws were out. I can't see rust holding it anyway. Mabe someone got goofy and glued it together with loctite or a pile of form-a-gasket. :shrug:

Good luck :)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Well, revisiting the brakes... I finally got the new calipers installed. Bled the whole system (used **** near a half gallon of brake fluid by the time the bubbles stopped comin' out.

Here's what I've done so far:

Changed all 4 rotors (with cross drilled ones in front)
Changed all brake pads (Ferodo in back and some Forma things from IAP in the front)
Replaced both front calipers.
Replaced left rear caliper.
Replaced right front inner wheel bearing
Repacked both front hubs with grease
Bled the whole system (used LOTS of brake fluid)


Anyway, I took her for a test drive and didn't get on the brakes very hard at all as I want to make sure I go through a proper bedding process before I really start driving it hard. The pedal goes almost to the floor and when I got back and took the front wheels off (figured that I'd bleed the brakes yet again just in case) the front brakes are HOT, I mean very very hot. The brand new rotors look almost blued from just a 5 mile drive.

Any suggestions?

I'm just about the end of my rope with this car and need to step away from it for about a day I think. In the meantime, any and all suggestions are welcome.

Thanks
 

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Blue rotors have been overheated and indicate either sticking calipers (pads dragging), misaligned caliper (pads dragging), pads that never bedded in correctly, (you end up using raw grip force to stop you rather than friction and grip), or that you drive like a little old lady with one foot resting on the brake pedal all the time.

Did you clean off the new rotors really well before install? (they are coated to inhibit rust while sitting on the shelf)

Were the rear rotors warm at all?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Hey Tifosi,

Oh yeah, they were overheated. And yes, the calipers were indeed dragging. They rear seems to have been fine.

The problem is that they're new (well, rebuilt calipers from Centerline) so they should be fine. But, they were definitely dragging. Also, I cleaned the rotors prior to the install. I've done brakes on Hondas, BMWs Nissans & VWs so I'm not a moron when it comes to brakes, but this one has been a real treat and quite a bit different from anything else I've done.

Thanks

Eric
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Nada... I try to be as clean as possible when doing anything with brakes :-/ Back to the drawing board I guess...
 

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Ah, the piston orientation........ I never thought to ask.

It 'might' help what issues you're having, but I'm not overly confident it'll cure it. (certainly you want to set them correctly just the same though)

My understanding of the notch is to make the pads to settle down at a slight pitch, at least as far as applied pressure is concerned, so as to help with degassing (your slots-n-crossdrillings take care of that regardless) and is more intended for squeek killing than much else. (I could be well off on that though. As I said, that's my understanding of it, not the cold hard real world facts :) )

For sure it doesn't affect how the pistons move though, as round is round.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The only reason that I could see that being a problem is that with the stepped down areas facing into the direction of rotor travel is that there would be less pressure on the tops of the pads. That could potentially allow them to separate from the rotor a bit better (if that made any sense) :)

That said, do you have any good tips for how to rotate the pistons so they face the right direction? They're kinda snug and I'm not exactly sure of a good way to get 'em turned. Ideally, I'd like to do it while they're still attached, but if not, so be it.

Thanks again...
 

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If things aren't all gummy and crusty, it's usually possible to turn them with a screwdriver by pressing at the corners of the cutouts, as the only real resistance will be the seal against the side of the piston. You'll have to take the dust boot off, but that and it's ring can be popped back in with the caliper in place most of the time.

Sometimes you can turn them while the calipers are on, sometimes not. (been about 50/50 for my attempts)
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Well, I pulled the calipers, rotated the pistons and put 'em back on. I bled the front brakes again. Started up the car to get the booster working, pressed the brakes a few times and had my wife press 'em a few times while I watche at the calipers. The pads squeeze the rotor and then back off very very slightly, but not much.

After firing up the car and pressing the brakes, they pads don't back up quite as much it seems. Spinning the front rotors after releasing the brakes takes a bit of force (read: they don't spin freely).

So, that said, I wonder what could be causing that...
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Update... Fade problems are gone. BUT... The front end still gets much hotter then it did before. It's not bad as soon as I stop and feel one of the front wheels, but let it sit for about 5 minutes and the conductive properties of magnesium become quite apparent (i.e. it gets hot).

I checked the rear wheels, they get warm, but no more then they used to. They also continue to spin freely. The front on, the other hand, spin quite hard until they're cooled down, then they spin much more freely.

I called Centerline and they said to check the end on the rod that pushes the MC, I checked that and it's fine, not bound up or anything. The fact that the rear end spins nice and free leads me to believe that the MC is working fine and isn't sticking on or anything.

Maybe new brakes will just run hot for a while, at this point, I have absolutely no idea.
 

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I'd expect the fronts to run quite a bit hotter than the rears as a result of the proportioning thingy in the rear brake circut, but for the fronts to drag even a little seems wrong.

You say they spin more freely when cooled and that's fine, but the thing is when they are hot and dragging a bit, all that does is make them hotter yet and they drag even more.

If you feel safe with them, give it a few days and check how the spin again, but meantime keep very close track of whether the rotors are showing any signs of being overheated.

I'm kinda grasping a bit myself so would certainly like to know how it's doing in X days.
 
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