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82 S3 Turbo Handbrake Siezed - Suspension/Brakes/Wheels/Hubs/Steering/Geo - The Lotus Forums Jump to content
robington

82 S3 Turbo Handbrake Siezed

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Hi

MOT due next week - I always thought the handbrake was a bit rubbish and left it in gear whenever it was left on a slope, but I did not think that would pass muster with the MOT tester and have now had a look at it. It seems the handbrake lever on the RH caliper is siezed up. I have loosened it a bit and will have another wiggling session with WD40 later to see if I can free it up even more, but I can't see that it is going to reach the stage where the lever will return under it's own spring (so to speak)!

Is this repairable or will I need to buy a replacement caliper?

Just checked the prices - Gulp!

Thank's

Rob.

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Two things can cause this. One is the handbrake cable seizing, which inhibits the self adjust mechanism as the lever never returns properly...and the other is the lever itself seizing where it pivots on the caliper. I have found the best approach to fixing it in situ is to obtain the assistance of a lever puller to sit in the car, grovel underneath it yourself....then get them to heave on the handbrake whilst you use a screwdriver or similar to lever it back again once the handbrake has been released. A judicious squirting of WD 40 or similar onto the pivot and persistence in the heaving and levering does, in the end, free up the pivot to the point where it works properly once more. You can end up with the self adjusting mechanism adjusted too tightly, so be careful you don't overdo it. I have had to do this on several occasions....I end up by using copper grease around the pivot, which helps to keep the road filth out and prevent the pivot seizing. Other than this, you will have to remove the caliper from the car and then undo and remove the mechanical bit that bolts on to the hydraulic cylinder...then you can manipulate the lever and pivot for all you're worth until it is properly free once more. If you do this, be sure it's scrupulously clean to start with and that you get no contamination inside the caliper. If you're not happy doing it, get and exchange caliper!! It's all fun, really.....

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Thanks John.

The cable is fine - I am able to wiggle that in and out with very little resistance apart from what you would expect from the outer sheath. The pivot/lever itself has siezed. I have given it a good old go with WD40 and about 1/2 hour of continuous back and forth on the pivot/lever with a screwdriver, but it is not really getting any looser. I also think the self adjusting mech is siezed as that does not appear to be doing anything. On top of that I noticed that one of the rubber boots over the piston is holed/perished? anyway, it's a definate caliper off job now, and I need to decide whether to go the repair kit route or get a refurbed caliper from SJ. I am erring towards the replacement caliper.

Regarding taking the old caliper off it looks straight forward, and I am sure it is not. Please can you confirm.

Remove 2 big bolts at rear that hold the caliper on to - er I forget what it was held on to now!

Then remove brake pipe bracket, undo brake pipe, unclip handbrake cable, lever pads in and off it comes! - correct?

Maybee some of the above in a different order.....

Edited by robington

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Calliper removal even easier

Remove 2 x 13 mm bolts

Slide calliper off pads

Very tight to chassis but should come out

Remove handbrake cable

Remove flexi hose

Job done

Don't remove the big 22 mm bolts holding onto gearbox you don't need to

John

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Just wondering John, do you put copper grease on your toasts?

...Seriously, great stuff to have around.

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may be incorrect piston adjustments as well get it of and investigate

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I agree with the concensus. Get the thing off and on the bench...then you can strip it down in relative comfort. It's worth noting that the w*nking back and forth is easier if you remove the return spring....then the pivot is more accessible to your PlusGas, WD40 or whatever...and it also enables it to move on it's axis, as well as rotating, which helps to get the splosh where it's needed! The 2 13mm AF bolts referred to go into pins which slide in and out of the mounting...these will need holding with a suitable spanner whilst you undo the bolts. Once you have wiggled the caliper off ( and it DOES come off!) then you can remove the pins and examine them too. One of them is solid and one has a rubber outer layer....I can't remember which is top and which is the bottom pin, but make sure you note it when dismantling! The pins tend to wear and this lets the calipers move so that the pads wear at an angle....something else to look out for! Again, copper grease for reassembly. Not for toast.......toast is, of course, best enjoyed with Frank Cooper's Vintage Oxford Marmalade, as eny fule kno....(!)

Edited by molemot

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Kind of hard to find in my vicinity!

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Malheuresement, Luc, t'as raison!!

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Well, because I had an impending MOT I decided to get an exchange caliper, really for expediency and it is now fitted, all shiny and new. Just need to get an asisstant so I can bleed the brakes. Whilst doing the job though, I decided that I am going to do it again in the coming weeks and replace some of the copper lineage and the fittings. They looked well past their best. The other thing that concerned me was the slider pins that the caliper screws on to. The seals were useless, so that's a no brainer to replace but the pins did not seem too clever as well. Some dry powdery rust came out of the bottom one, although the top one seemed better and was a bit sticky presumably with copper grease. Upon refitting the caliper jiggles around a bit on the pins. Does that sound like a clean up and re-fit, or a need for new pins. I have seen other posts saying there can be a bit of play there, but I don't know if mine's gone beyond that?

Rob.

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That play is what makes the pads wear at an angle, rather than staying parallel to the disc face. I think new pins are available as a kit, with new seals and caliper bolts. Also you have to fit them in the right holes...I think the solid ones go in the top, with the rubber coated ones in the bottom...but I'm sure you checked when you dismantled.... If there is still too much play, then you could get some new pins turned up by someone competent or have the holes machined out, lined and honed to size after.

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they are floating calipers,and dont forget heat and expansion allowances :smoke:

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The rubber coated pin was in the top on my caliper. I had a look and SJ do a pin and seal kit for a reasonable cost, so I am going to get that and fit it along with a couple of replacement pipe fittings and pipe.

The handbrake is superb now! I am always on the lookout for a hill to park it on, just because I can now!!!! Oh Joy....

When I put the new pins in, should I copper grease them, or do they go in dry?

If you were wondering why I have not done both calipers, it's because the other side was replaced about 18 months ago by the previous owner.

Thanks,

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As ever, I use copper grease on the pins...and slide them in and out a few times to ensure the holes are greased to the bottom, too...and having some in the rubber seal does no harm. Make sure that the lever and pivot stays lubricated and doesn't seize up again....(!)

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Passed the MOT so I am chuffed with that, with an advisory to replace the tyres soon.

I had a look at my service notes for the caliper pins and it says that the wider (rubber coated) slider pin should be in the bottom, as you said John, and not the top as mine were, so I will have to swap that around. I put them in as they came out, so the previous owner/mechanic got them mixed up!

Copper grease at the ready!

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