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I am trying to finish my 74 GTV restoration project. Everything has been either painted, polished or plated. Car looks fantastic. Upon assembling the Clutch Master Cylinder I decided that it needed to be rebuilt. I purchased a rebuild kit, ATE, from International Auto. I inserted the piston and it was so tight I had destroyed it getting it out. Yes I used brake fluid for lubrication. I then purchased another rebuilt kit from Alfa parts in Berkeley. Same problem but now I rigged an air valve to get it out if it gets stuck. I assued the seal is just not the right size. Neither vendor has been able to help and they are both confident they sent the right kit. Does anyone have experience with rebuiling these cylinders? Ahy help would be appreciated.

Glenn
 

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Glenn:

You definitely have an odd problem on your hands. These clutch master cylinders are a pretty common part. I believe that all were built by ATE and that all take the same rebuild parts - in other words, it would be hard for the parts suppliers to mess up, and send you an incorrect kit. Plus IAP and AlfaParts know what they're doing (if you had gotten your rebuild kit from the neighborhood PepBoys I'd have my doubts). Plus the odds of BOTH of them making the SAME mistake is pretty low. No, I'm guessing that you got the right kit.

So, why is it tight? Earlier Alfas (Giuliettas and Giulias) used Girling, Bonaldi, and Benditalia hydraulic parts on the same models - it was possible to get a kit intended for one that wouldn't fit the other. But by 1974 Alfa had settled on ATE, and that sort of mix-up went away. Still, it might be worth measuring your cylinder's id and the rubber from the rebuild kit's od, and see if they correspond. Perhaps your cast iron cylinder has some oddball id.

Obviously the brute force solution would be to just buy a complete new clutch master. You've probably spent the equivalent on rebuild kits already. Not to mention your time and grief!

Good luck with it!
 

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Obviously the brute force solution would be to just buy a complete new clutch master. You've probably spent the equivalent on rebuild kits already. Not to mention your time and grief!
That's what I did when my slave cylinder went last summer. Being I was into a project anyway, I bought a new Clutch Master just to (hopefully) eliminate another problem down the line. Being this isn't exactly a :rolleyes:"numbers matching" situation as in a :eek:Corvette restoration, I figured the easiest and simplist thing to do is just buy a new one. So far, so good.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Glenn:

You definitely have an odd problem on your hands. These clutch master cylinders are a pretty common part. I believe that all were built by ATE and that all take the same rebuild parts - in other words, it would be hard for the parts suppliers to mess up, and send you an incorrect kit. Plus IAP and AlfaParts know what they're doing (if you had gotten your rebuild kit from the neighborhood PepBoys I'd have my doubts). Plus the odds of BOTH of them making the SAME mistake is pretty low. No, I'm guessing that you got the right kit.

So, why is it tight? Earlier Alfas (Giuliettas and Giulias) used Girling, Bonaldi, and Benditalia hydraulic parts on the same models - it was possible to get a kit intended for one that wouldn't fit the other. But by 1974 Alfa had settled on ATE, and that sort of mix-up went away. Still, it might be worth measuring your cylinder's id and the rubber from the rebuild kit's od, and see if they correspond. Perhaps your cast iron cylinder has some oddball id.

Obviously the brute force solution would be to just buy a complete new clutch master. You've probably spent the equivalent on rebuild kits already. Not to mention your time and grief!

Good luck with it!
Jay,
I figured it out. My cylinder is a 17MM ate. The kit is intended for a 19 MM Cylinder. I went to a local Alfa Repair shop and all of the clutch cylinders were 19MM. Somehow my car ended up with a 17. Not sure if it came out of the factory that way or the previous owner swithed at one point. Either way I got a used 19MM and rebuit it with the kit that I have, I am one step closer.

Glenn
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Problem Solved

I figured it out. My cylinder is a 17MM ate. The kit is intended for a 19 MM Cylinder. I went to a local Alfa Repair shop and all of the clutch cylinders were 19MM. Somehow my car ended up with a 17. Not sure if it came out of the factory that way or the previous owner swithed at one point. Either way I got a used 19MM and rebuit it with the kit that I have, I am one step closer.

Glenn
 

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Glenn:

Glad you found the cause for the problem. I'm surprised that it went together at all, with a 2mm dimensional difference between the rebuild kit and the metal parts. It is a mystery how this oddball cylinder ended up in your car - perhaps a PO took his old cylinder into the local parts distributor, and asked for something that would fit. It sounds like yours is an ATE part, and looks about the same as the 19mm cylinder from the outside.
 

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I Noticed that I had the same problem. Tight fit. Comparing the the old seal and the one that came in IAP kit, I found the old seals center inside diameter was larger than the one that came in the rebuild kit. The outside diameter of the kit seals and old seals are the same minus general wear of the old seals. I had taken the piston shalf to a lathe and cut a couple thousands off to match in the ID of the new seal. nice fit. everything is working well so far.
 

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Help to source 17mm clutch master seals

I just went through the same frustrating experience as others on the BB. I have purchased and rebuilt both clutch masters and slaves for years without any trouble. Until now.

I too purchased a clutch master rebuild kit from IAP recently for my 1972 GTV. After installing the new seals from an non ATE labeled box, the piston wouldn't slide within the bore. I ultimately ended up ruining the piston seal, so I was mad at myself, but also suspected I got the wrong kit from IAP. BTW, my ATE cylinder was cast with " 17" so I know it was a 17mm bore master.

Like the other BB member, I ordered another kit, this time from Alfa Parts in Berkeley because I trust John to know the fine points of alfas. The kit I received from Alfa Parts was labeled Akron, so again it was not original Ate. Installed the new seals without damaging them, but then again, the piston wouldn't slide within the bore!

So I got onto the BB and read this thread. I wish I had read it before I purchased the second kit! Alfajay commented that most clutch masters are 19mm, yet I have three used ones, two from 115 Gtv or Berlina, one from a 1986 Spider, and all are 17mm. So I think 17mm is a common size.

Does anyone have a source for the proper seals for a 17mm Ate clutch master? I would really appreciate your help.

Gary
 

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A few months back I purchased new clutch master and slave cylinders from IAP. My slave had been leaking and I believe in replacing these things together, and I don't like rebuilding them (personal peeve...long story). Anyhow, the parts that IAP sent were "white box" or no-name...certainly not ATE, which is what I expected, somewhat naively. I called them on it and they said this is what they have sold for some years without issue. I priced out genuine ATE parts elsewhere...they are available, but maybe double the price. Being thrifty, I installed the no-name parts, they bled fine and have work properly since.

Where to reliably find genuine ATE stuff? I like A&W in Eatontown, NJ, ask for Scott. There may well be other sources, of course. Best of luck, John.
 
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