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Old 07-04-2004, 07:18 AM   #1
runnjump
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88 Rear Disc Calliper/Emergency Brake Problems

I continue to have probelms keeping rear brake (cast iron) calipers in my 88 GTA working correctly.

The rear caliper pistons contain an internal ratchet mechanism that must work correctly to keep the brakes adjusted. It adjusts the brakes each time the emergency brake is applied (we always set the emergency brake at every time we get out of the vehicle).

For some reason, after a year or so this ratchet stops working. Results...no adjustment...no rear brakes...no emergency brake.

Does anyone have a suggestion on how I can achieve better results or does someone make a better caliper?

Thanks.

LJP
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Old 07-04-2004, 10:25 PM   #2
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I have a '79 with the same type of rear calipers. Although I live in the North, I don't drive it from the first snow until the spring when the rain washes any salt off the road (and only in the rain once in five years - got hit with a fast moving storm). I had to replace both rear calipers five years ago when I bought it because the emergency brake did not work. Since then, I always pump the emergency brake pedal five or six times (holding the release lever in the release position) every time it is brought out of the garage. And I try to use it every time I park it. So far so good. Good luck!
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Old 07-04-2004, 11:39 PM   #3
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Re: 88 Rear Disc Calliper/Emergency Brake Problems

Where do you live - If your in the rust belt that would be a start.

Replace or clean all the parts is about it- GM rear calipers have Aways been a problem- go ask a Grand Prix owner.

Lots of people make an aftermarker Disc brake set up but they are $$$ and you need to remove axels to install most if not all to use a different mounting bracket- Can't you just take off the wheels and ratch it manualy?
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Old 07-05-2004, 12:51 PM   #4
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Re: Re: 88 Rear Disc Calliper/Emergency Brake Problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomminajar
Where do you live - If your in the rust belt that would be a start.

Replace or clean all the parts is about it- GM rear calipers have Aways been a problem- go ask a Grand Prix owner.

Lots of people make an aftermarker Disc brake set up but they are $$$ and you need to remove axels to install most if not all to use a different mounting bracket- Can't you just take off the wheels and ratch it manualy?

The problem is that the mechanism that stops working (from rust and non-use) is internal to the caliper. The levers and cables are external, but the mechanisms they move are the part that locks up. The regular brakes work OK even if the emergency brake is not working.
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Old 07-06-2004, 02:28 AM   #5
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Re: Re: Re: 88 Rear Disc Calliper/Emergency Brake Problems

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Originally Posted by Philo
The problem is that the mechanism that stops working (from rust and non-use) is internal to the caliper. The levers and cables are external, but the mechanisms they move are the part that locks up. The regular brakes work OK even if the emergency brake is not working.
They will work ok but soon they will be out of adjustment - You can only try all new parts or clean them real good or adjust them manually.
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Old 07-10-2004, 08:27 AM   #6
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Thanks for the feedback. I do live in the south, so rust is never a problem here. Also, I did disconnect the emergency brake cable and actuated the emergency brake lever probably fifty times with a pair of adjustable pliers. The ratchet in the caliper was just not working (by the way the other side worked when I did this).

I finally replace the caliper with another rebuilt unit from Oreilly Automotive this week and everything works fine now. They have a lifetime guarantee on their parts, but changing the caliper and bleeding out the system is still a pain.

My wife drives the GTA weekly. I think from now on I'll use Philo's advise and have her pump the emergency brake several times when stops.

LJP
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