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Discussion Starter #1
I just dropped the 16V motor in my 'Sud berlina and am now struggling with that **** parking brake system for the inboard front brakes. I thought we had the cable installed correctly, but the parking brake handle now only pulls back half as far as before and one of the calipers is not pushing the pads into the disc at all (the calipers, discs, pads and brake cable are all brand new).

I've looked all over for drawings, schematics, instructions for this but can't find anything. Even in that useless Haynes manual (this parking brake thing is easily the worst job on the entire Alfasud, so I have no idea why I can't find any tutorials on how to service it correctly).

Does anyone have any pics or drawings or instructions on the correct way to install the parking brake cable? I'm really getting tired of pulling the engine over and over again just to sort out this ridiculous design. Help!!!!!
 

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its a long time since I did one - but I believe they are simliar to the alfetta/75 rear brakes. This way always worked for me :

If the handbrake is not pulling it may be just too tight and so you are not getting the leverage. Slacken off the handbrake and check that you can lock the caliper manually with the lever. If you can't then reset the pads by adjusting the caliper pistons one at a time. If the brake still won't lock you may have a dud caliper. Otherwise re-attach the cable and adjust slowly adjust until you eliminate the free travel. I'll have alookat home if I avethe real workshop manual but it will be the weekend.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I have the caliper located at the end of the cable (the right, or passenger side of my car - it's left hand drive from Germany) working properly. The problem is the second caliper, on the left hand side, does not seem to be pulling evenly with the first caliper.

Therefore, what I have is one caliper locked when the handbrake is pulled, but the other caliper still seems to be loose. I have double-checked my clearances on the brake pads in the caliper and they are both set at the factory spec of 1 mm gap.

How do I get that second caliper synchronized with the first one so they both grab evenly when I pull on the handbrake lever?

By the way, both calipers are brand new and have been tested before being installed on the transmission.
 

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I'm not sure if it's normal, but my sud does the same thing. It still holds the car on hills, that's what's important right?

Remember you can adjust the cable tension from inside the car.
 

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It was the same when I had the inboards on my sud, it takes ALOT of adjusting and levering and cursing and levering and more adjusting, to get the handbrake to work properly. I got it working once, then the caliper started leaking from the adjuster, so I gave up after that.

I generally just get 1 side working really good so that it will hold the car. If you are concerned about a RWC, just tell the mechanic it's normal for an alfa...

I have rear drums now though. A **** load easier then the mechanism on the inboards...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I've heard that it's possible to move the parking brake to the rear axle by using Alfetta calipers. Does anyone have info on that? Like exactly what parts did they use for the handbrake lever, calipers, master cylinder and any modifications?
 

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I've heard that it's possible to move the parking brake to the rear axle by using Alfetta calipers. Does anyone have info on that? Like exactly what parts did they use for the handbrake lever, calipers, master cylinder and any modifications?
Several threads have covered this topic in the past go check em out!
 

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I'm sure it's just a typo in your post, but you should set the pad to disk clearance to 0.1mm, not 1mm. I generally don't bother to measure but instead wind the adjuster on each pad in to start binding the brake, then wind off just enough to allow free running. Once all 4 are set like that the brakes and handbrake work a treat.

Does the left inner pad lock the disk when you wind the adjuster in too far? And does the caliper lever move as it should when the handbrake is operated? If not, is the lever on the left caliper free to move? Your comment that the handbrake lever only moves half as far suggests that the left caliper lever is not moving.

Note that the handbrake will not be 'synchronised' on both calipers - one will always operate before the other (ie the cable will pull the easiest lever first, then the stiffer one) but this doesn't matter - it just applies one pad before the other.

The alfetta caliper conversion can be done but is less than ideal because the pistons are much bigger than in the sud rear caliper and so cause brake balance issues.
 

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I generally don't bother to measure but instead wind the adjuster on each pad in to start binding the brake, then wind off just enough to allow free running. Once all 4 are set like that the brakes and handbrake work a treat.
That's what I do too. Feeler gauges are lame, especially if you have big ridges on your disc.


lenus.
 

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I have struggled with this a few times and last time I did it I spent a bit of time trying to understand it. I think I know what is going on now and will try to explain it here. These directions relate to a right-hand drive car, i.e. when I refer to drivers side I mean the right hand caliper.

Before I get down to the actual steps involved, it is important to understand the relationship between (i) how far the cable-end is screwed up into the car (ii) the travel of the handrake lever in the car and (iii) the effectiveness of the handbrake.

The lever on the drivers side (right) calliper seems to move through the full arc of movement almost regardless of how far the handbrake cable is screwed into the car.

The passenger side (left) calliper is a lot more affected by how far the cable is screwed up into the car. The further the cable is screwed up into the car (i.e. the more thread that is showing) the further the lever on the calliper travels when the handbrake in the car is pulled on - i.e. the lever on the calliper travels through its full arc and therefore potentially offers more pressure on the brake pad. However with the cable screwed a long way up into the car the travel on the handbrake lever in the car can become excessive (i.e. the lever points to the roof before the pads stop the disks moving). As you screw the cable adjuster into the floor this acts on the passenger side calliper and puts its some way into its arc of movement, i.e. it starts to apply the handbrake. This reduces the distance you need to lift the lever in the car but also closes the gap between the pad and the disk. To keep the all important 0.1mm gap you have to back the piston off a bit. The net result being that handbrake lever is already part way through its arc of movement before you have actually applied any pressure to the pad and this inturn means that you now have a reduced arc of movement and it may no longer be enough to put sufficient pressure on the pad to stop the disk moving. In summary it looks like you have to find a compromise between how far you pull the handbrake lever and how effective you want the handbrake to be on the passenger side calliper.

Clear as mud?

Anyway. With that in mind. Here is what I do when adjusting the handbrake:

  1. Jack the front of the car up until both wheels are off the ground (it makes it easier to check if the handbrake is working on both wheels later in the procedure)
  2. Release the handbrake (if not already released)
  3. Make sure there is a 0.1 mm gap (or measure by feel as advised above) between all pads and the disks.
  4. Engage the handbrake.
  5. Did the handbrake act fully on both disks, i.e. are both front wheels unable to rotate?
    If yes, go to step 8.
    If no, remove the passenger seat (optional but makes adjustment much easier) then go to the next step.
  6. Check if the handbrake lever on the calliper has travelled through its full arc (i.e. is the lever hard up against the pin that limits its travel).
    If it isn’t, get back in the car and screw the cable further into the floor (this will increase the arc of movement by making the end point of travel for the lever further away from the start point)
    If it is, wind the cable out from the floor a bit (this will increase the arc of movement by moving the start point of the lever back a bit)
    Note: How much to screw the cable in/out is trial and error but be aware of the compromise discussed above - start small. Also, if the levers are passing through their full arc of movement already (i.e. it is hard up against the pin and the beginning and end out its travel I don't think there isn't any point making any adjustment. I could be wrong but I think the cable must have stretched and needs replacing - good luck with that!).
  7. Go back to step 3.
  8. Is the travel of the handbrake lever in the car excessive?
    If yes, wind more of the adjuster into the floor and go back to step 3 (you can get into and endless loop at this step and if this starts to happens you have to find a compromise between handbrake travel and brake effectiveness that you can live with)
    If no, you have won this battle (thank all that is holy to you)
  9. Lower the front of the car
  10. Refit the passenger seat.
It is complex and difficult to explain but this procedure works for me. It is still a pain in the arse but at least it takes a lot of the guess work out of it.
 
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