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Discussion Starter #1
The parking brake handle has not worked correctly since I got the car. Previous owner used a block of wood to hold the handle up high enough to engaged the brake. In other words, the brake handle does engage the parking brake, and will hold the car if the brake handle is all the way up, but won't hold it stay up on its own, it drops to about halfway down unless held by hand or with the block of wood. This is a little annoying, so I'd like to fix it if possible and if not too expensive.

Looking at the IAP workshop manual, it appears this operates in sort of a ratcheting motion. I haven't taken anything apart yet, but wondering if this is a common problem. Is it likely to be stripped gear teeth off the mechanism? Or is there some sort of adjustment that might be made to a linkage?

Any insight would be helpful.
 

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Your best bet may be to replace the handle with a good used one. I doubt that a worn ratchet can be cost effectively repaired.
 

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But Mad North-Northwest
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There are two pieces to this: the arched ratchet, and the pawl (tooth) in the arm that locks into the arched ratchet. Both of them are usually worn.

The arched ratchet can be bought here:

https://www.centerlinealfa.com/store/453

For the arm/button piece, Alfa Parts in Berkeley used to sell rebuilt ones, but they were pretty expensive. An easier way is to just pull the arm with the pawl out of the handle and sharpen the tooth with a narrow file.

It won't have proper surface hardening after you file it, but so long as you push the button in as you raise the handle to reduce wear then it should last quite a while until you need to resharpen it.

The whole job can be done pretty easily from the top of the car.
 

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There are two pieces to this: the arched ratchet, and the pawl (tooth) in the arm that locks into the arched ratchet.
I can think of a third part: the spring that forces the pawl into the ratchet. It's possible that dotcentral's spring has rusted/broken and is no longer forcing the two other parts to lock together.

Either way, disassembly, inspection, repair, reassembly are his next steps. If the spring is indeed the culprit, either something from the hardware store, or alfaparticle's suggestion of a good, used lever assembly are the solutions.
 

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This is picture of either a spider (81) Eurospec or a 105 series coupe (74) I don't know which, but the mechanism should be about the same (or at least work the same). You can see the teeth and where the pawl and spring are housed. Once this is out of the car it is really easy to strip and repair. There are only 2 bolts holding the whole mechanism together.

At least it'll give you an idea of how it looks out of the car.
 

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But Mad North-Northwest
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Actually you don't even need to take the whole assembly out of the car. If you remove the handle cover and then remove the toothed arc piece (one bolt) then the button/pawl assembly will just slide out of the front.
 

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Similar but different issue

I don't want to appear a hijacker but I am having an e-brake issue as well and I wonder if you who have experience could comment as well.

Whenever I disengage the e-brake (on my '89) the lever wants to pop back up automatically. This happens until the vehicle starts steady forward movement, during which time there is a bumping or clicking sound coming from the lever. That is the point I can put it down and it will stay down.

Anyone have any ideas as to what causes this, and how to fix it?

Thanks and apologies in advance if this seems to be hijacking-M5
 

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If your pulling the e brake handle up and it feels like its catching then pops back down. The teeth on both parts have rounded off. YOu need to replace both pieces.

Classic alfa has the pawl and the ratchet for about 12.00 bucks each.

BR095 HANDBRAKE PAWL END PIECE - Classic Alfa
 
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