Team-BHP > Technical Stuff > DIY - Do it yourself

Search this Thread
Old 3rd December 2020, 08:23   #766
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Delhi
Posts: 6,605
Thanked: 32,200 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

My latest and cheapest tool is a simple eraser. An ink eraser though, not a pencil eraser. I found out that these are not that easy to come by these days. I had to shop around a bit, but finally found one at an office supply shop.

These ink eraser work very well to clean up used commutator of e-motors


Name:  PC0200012.jpg
Views: 489
Size:  304.4 KB


Name:  PC0200022.jpg
Views: 482
Size:  305.2 KB

Name:  PC0200032.jpg
Views: 477
Size:  276.3 KB

Cleaned up really well. After some more cleaning of all the other parts it was time to start putting everything back again. I decided to use white lithium grease. Because, well, that is the grease I happen to have. And when it comes to bearings it is pretty much universally used for all kinds of bearings.

Name:  PC0200042.jpg
Views: 472
Size:  317.8 KB

This was a bit of a tricky part. How to assemble everything without getting grease on the three carbon brushes. I made a little cilinder of paper to move the bushes out of the way, so I could insert the complete rotor. Pulled the paper away once it was properly inlace and the gearing properly meshed.

Name:  PC0200052.jpg
Views: 458
Size:  330.5 KB

However, I found out positioning it back into the casing was a problem. There are big magnets in there, so putting it back in made the rotor slip backwards. So I had to find a way to fix the rotor into the gear house in such a way I could slip the casing back on. A simple piece of string did the trick

Name:  PC0200062.jpg
Views: 463
Size:  324.5 KB

Everything could be put back together, cut the string and pull it out! Also had to make a new packing for the little gear box. I just used ordinary paper. The surfaces are very flat, there is only grease in it, should be ok.

Name:  PC0200072.jpg
Views: 460
Size:  248.5 KB

Beginning to look like a proper wiper motor assembly again!

Name:  PC0200082.jpg
Views: 447
Size:  280.5 KB

The casing is held in place with two bolts, each with one of these nuts.

Name:  PC0200092.jpg
Views: 447
Size:  247.3 KB

Fiddly job inserting them. If you drop them inside the casing you are done for. Because of the magnets inside the casing there is no way you can get them out, other than to take everything completely apart. So some diligence was required. Enter my selection of surgical tools. I bought these at some brocante market many years ago, much to the amusement of my wife and some friends who were with us.

But these pliers and clamps do come in handy from time to time. And they are beautifully made from stainless steel.

Name:  PC0200102.jpg
Views: 419
Size:  268.8 KB

Name:  PC0200112.jpg
Views: 424
Size:  284.6 KB

These holes with the nuts are simply covered over with some tape. The original tape was still sort of sticky, but I decided to wrap some more tape around it afterwards as well.

Name:  PC0200122.jpg
Views: 416
Size:  264.0 KB

The wires leading into the e-motor were just lead through a hole in the casing. I donít have a proper grommet or anything for it. When I took it apart, there was some sealant put on this. So I put some DIY sealant on it too. It will be all the way at the back, once installed, so I donít see an immediate problem

Name:  PC0200132.jpg
Views: 417
Size:  277.5 KB

Next is to clean the various electrical cable connectors and hook it back up to the power in the Spider and see what happens. According to some make shift wiper motor fix instruction I picked up on the Internet the position of the large gear wheel is critical and you should mark it before taking it apart. I did not do that, because I simply forgot. I am not so sure it is that critical, because I figure the design of this thing is such that it will rotate in the correct position once power is applied. So you should not attach the mechanical linkage, until you have power it up and it is come to its normal resting position.

We will see if my little theory holds true. If not, I do know how to take it apart and back again!


Last edited by Jeroen : 3rd December 2020 at 08:25.
Jeroen is offline   (4) Thanks
Old 4th December 2020, 11:33   #767
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Delhi
Posts: 6,605
Thanked: 32,200 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

Finished the wiper mechanism project last night!

Put the motor back in. You can also see the tape I wrapped around the top of the casing to prevent any dirt getting in via the holes for the nuts. Just wrapped it over the old small pieces of tape shown earlier.

Name:  PC030001.jpg
Views: 391
Size:  325.2 KB

Before putting it back in, I also cleaned the contacts of the plug very thoroughly. There was quite a bit corrosion as you might recall. Plugged the cable back in, turned the ignition on, moved the wiper stalk to on; NOTHING!

First thought: I was wrong about the position of the gearwheel not being relevant. I sort of hoped, maybe the fuse is blown. So I got out of the car and luckily I looked at the wiper motor. Remember I had not installed the actual blades or the linkage yet. Sure enough the little shaft was spinning around! But with virtually no sound at all. Testimony to an outstanding overhaul job!!!

Very relieved! Check the interval setting and also the stopping function. When you switch the wipers off, or the ignition, the motor will return to its normal stop position. So all appears te be good!!

Next job was to take the linkage out and clean it up. Comes out very easily, just requires undoing of the two nuts on the wiper arm pins:

Name:  PC030002.jpg
Views: 370
Size:  354.0 KB

All the various ball joints and bearings were a bit stiff:

Name:  PC030003.jpg
Views: 371
Size:  290.4 KB

Name:  PC030004.jpg
Views: 377
Size:  197.0 KB

Not much I can do about these ball joints. They appear to be pressed in, canít take them apart without damaging them. I will come back to them later

Name:  PC030005.jpg
Views: 372
Size:  282.5 KB

But the two actual wiper arm pins do come apart. So in the vice it goes:

Name:  PC030006.jpg
Views: 365
Size:  268.8 KB

Name:  PC030007.jpg
Views: 366
Size:  312.4 KB

It is held in place with one tiny spring washer, sort of a very rudimentary seegerring. Bit fiddly to get off, prying with various small screw drivers and various other little tool bits.

Interesting how the seegerring and the washer ended up in my magnetic tray!

Name:  PC030008.jpg
Views: 372
Size:  194.3 KB

With the seegerrring off, the wiper pin mechanism can be pulled apart. Lots of dried up grease here as well:

Name:  PC030009.jpg
Views: 373
Size:  293.0 KB

Very thorough cleaning:

Name:  PC030010.jpg
Views: 366
Size:  277.2 KB

Greased it all with my usual lithium grease.

Getting the seegerring back on is easy, but you need to make use of a makeshift tool to press it back on. I just used a socket that would fit over the little shaft.

Name:  PC030011.jpg
Views: 362
Size:  271.2 KB

Name:  PC030012.jpg
Views: 363
Size:  287.2 KB

Made a big difference, turns very smoothly, very little resistance.

As mentioned, I could not find a way to pop the various little ball joints of the linkage without damaging them. The rubber boots looked ok. I checked various of my Spider work shop manuals and part sites. You can still buy this complete linkage, completely assembled, for a staggering Euro 350! But I have not been able to find the individual parts. So this thing was not designed to be taken apart any further than I had already done with the wiper parts.

So I spend a bit of time on each ball joint. Carefully peeled back the rubber boot, so I could see the ball joint. blew some compressed air around it, to clean it up and packed it, to the best of my ability, with some fresh lithium grease. And then moved it around for a few minutes. All of them responded well to this treatment and they all move a bit more freely now.

So fitting it all back together again, into the Spider, connected the linkage to the little motor as well

Name:  PC030013.jpg
Views: 361
Size:  345.1 KB

Moment of truth:

On interval setting:

So it all appears to running very well! Dutch radio in the background!

Obviously, I still need to fit the wipers, but I am confident it will run fine with those attached. I am very happy I took on this little job. It was definitely needed after 36 years! Also, I am pretty confident I have solved the slow running of the wipers on the interval setting too.

I donít use the wipers much. But now and then you find yourself driving in the rain or even snow or sleek. It canít be helped. So wipers are important safety features. They are also a potential MOT failure item if they donít work at all or donít work properly.

Once I have got the new paravan and have it painted I hope not to have to open up this panel for a long time! I found out the wiper motor is still available as well. Around Euro 250. But in this case I am very happy to have succeeded with a proper overhaul of all these parts. In all, maybe 3-4 hours of work.

Jeroen is offline   (6) Thanks
Old 7th December 2020, 18:49   #768
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Delhi
Posts: 6,605
Thanked: 32,200 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

Look what the mailman just dropped off:

A new paravan and new rubbers for the Spider.

My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Spider-img_3744.jpg

My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Spider-img_3745.jpg

Now I need to get hold of Johan to pin him down for a data for the spraying of this paravan and to sort the rust on the Jaguar rear window sill.

I will have to check a bit more closely, but it looks like the old and the new one are identical, in terms of dimension, shape, holes etc.

I have most rubbers now to re-install the paravan and everything that goes on it. Except the very special little bolts/washer that attached the air inlet to the paravan. I have not been able to find those anywhere. So I will have to improvise. I will start by cleaning the old one, maybe I can glue the parts together again. They were all broken. More to come!


Last edited by Jeroen : 7th December 2020 at 18:50.
Jeroen is offline   (3) Thanks
Old 14th December 2020, 15:42   #769
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Delhi
Posts: 6,605
Thanked: 32,200 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

This Saturday I popped around to my favourite tool shop, again.

Got a few things I needed:

10 sets of gloves, WD40, floor cleaner, new honing bits, Hammerite paint.

A few other small bits and pieces

Name:  PC120010.jpg
Views: 313
Size:  418.4 KB

Actually, I also got some real new tools, but I had to hand them over to my wife as they will be my Christmas presents!

Motoring pal Berndt popped around too. I am working on one of his outdoor lights. Its one of these solar powered, motion detection lights. The glass of the sensor got damaged, and it was not working at all.

Name:  PC080001.jpg
Views: 311
Size:  419.6 KB

Name:  PC080002.jpg
Views: 310
Size:  370.7 KB

Surprising amount of electronics in this simple device:

Name:  PC080003.jpg
Views: 314
Size:  353.5 KB

There is not much I can fix on these PCBs with all these tiny components. Would not know where to begin. So checked visually for loose component, bulging capacitors and corrosion on the various contacts. Nothing though.

I did check the battery too. Although it does charge, it appears to loose most of it charge within 24 hours. So I think this thing is done for.

Jeroen is offline   (3) Thanks
Old 15th December 2020, 18:01   #770
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Delhi
Posts: 6,605
Thanked: 32,200 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

A bit of early Christmas. All for my Spider, a set of rear calibers, rear discs, pads and brake hose. And some brake fluid. It is a 5L canister, but it only holds a bit. 5L of brake fluid is way too much for your average hobby mechanic. As soon as you open the package you better use it, or throw it out after 2 years. It is hydroscopic so an opened package attracts moisture.

So that is the main reason brake fluid to the average consumer gets sold in 400-500ml containers. (At least here in Europe)

My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Spider-img_3751.jpg

Remarkably the Alfa Spider does not have the usual set up in its brakes where typical left front /right rear and right front / left rear are connected to the same brake circuit. On the Spider the two front brake and the two rear brakes make for two separate circuits. So in case of a brake failure, you tend to loose all front or all rear braking. Never quite understood what the design philosophy behind this set up was?

I have agreed a date with Johan for the re-spray work on the Jaguar and the Spider Paravan. First week of January. Fingers crossed.


Last edited by Jeroen : 15th December 2020 at 18:03.
Jeroen is offline   (4) Thanks
Old 21st December 2020, 22:46   #771
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Delhi
Posts: 6,605
Thanked: 32,200 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

Several months ago I swapped all my lightning for LED tubes as you recall. I was very pleased with the result. And I still am.

Today I noticed I have mounted one of the LED tubes upside down!

Name:  PC200029.jpg
Views: 284
Size:  261.4 KB

Never noticed before!! I also forgot the light fitting above my workbench still has conventional tubes, so I see a little lightning job coming on in the next few weeks.

Jeroen is offline   (2) Thanks
Old 24th December 2020, 21:08   #772
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Delhi
Posts: 6,605
Thanked: 32,200 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

Due to the second lock down restriction our big annual family Christmas celebration needs to be very different. We can only entertain three adults per day. So Christmas celebration is spread over three shifts and as many days.

Every day a different set of Christmas present under the tree. Quite the logistical challenge, let me tell you!

My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Spider-img_3758.jpg

We started this afternoon with my daughter, son and law and our gorgeous granddaughter.

I bought some cool tools so my wife could give me some appropriate Christmas presents. If I donít I will get socks and single malt whisky. Not bad, but I prefer tools!

I got a air hammer. Which I think might come in very handy on my next job on the Spider

My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Spider-img_3767.jpg

Also, I managed after years of trawling the internet, to finally get my hands on an original tool kit for my Jaguar!! These kits are still available for new, but they will cost upwards of Euro 150 and second hand ones typically retail on Ebay for at lest Euro 75 - 100

Those who follow this thread will know I am not shy of spending some money on my cars. But Euro 100 - 150 for what is a very simple toolkit is just ridiculous. I found this on a Dutch market website for Euro 20, which I thought was fine..

The toolkit lives in its special compartment under the hood.

My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Spider-img_3769.jpg

Next time when the Jaguar is due for is regular three year insurance appraisal it will be added to the appraisal report. Because it does add to the completeness and originality of the car.

I had a good look at this tool set and the tools are of the usual mediocre quality as most car tool kits are. But it looks very smart I think.

I also got this nice Christmas present from the Dutch Jaguar Daimler club. Of course, this year just about all rallyís and events got cancelled. So they had a special Rally Shield made.

Nice gesture.

My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Spider-img_3770.jpg

Jeroen is offline   (4) Thanks
Old 30th December 2020, 22:40   #773
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Delhi
Posts: 6,605
Thanked: 32,200 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

Today I set to work on the Spider rebound straps.

These days you rarely comes across rebound straps. But the Spider has a live rear axle and there they do have their use. Essentially a rebound strap ensure that the axle does not drop to far down. This can happen when you put the car on a lift, or jack it up. Or when you go to fast across a hump and the car starts flying. In both cases the rebound straps ensure the axle stays well positions underneath the car. It also comes with rubber bumper stops, in case you max out on your suspension, the bumper stops sitting in the middle of the rebound straps are you last resort!

I moved the Spider yesterday so its rear is now sticking out, easier to work on

Name:  PC300001.jpg
Views: 225
Size:  389.1 KB

First things first. Safety first as always. Chokes on the front wheels

Name:  PC300002.jpg
Views: 220
Size:  255.0 KB

Many people will tell you, you can jack up a Spider under the differential. I never do. I have never seen it mentioned in any official Alfa manuals. So I consider it an Internet Myth. It probably works, but I am not going to risk it. On my W123 the workshop manual actually mentions it is ok to lift the complete back, by placing a jack under the differential.

A Spider differential looks very different from a Mercedes W123. The latter being a solid, BIG, block of steel. The Spider differential, by comparison looks tiny and has all sorts of protrusions and cooling fins. So I am not risking it

So two jacks, one of each side and axle stands (two) under the rear axle

Name:  PC300003.jpg
Views: 221
Size:  329.9 KB

Name:  PC300004.jpg
Views: 225
Size:  355.1 KB

I always leave the jacks in place, but the axle stands are taking 95% of the load.

When your rebound straps look like this, you might consider replacing them:

Name:  PC300005.jpg
Views: 224
Size:  354.2 KB

I used my fancy pneumatic tool to undo the little bolts. I bought one of these about 2-3 years ago. I saw Raymond, the owner of G&G Jaguar specialist, use one as he tore apart a Jaguar auto box. Never used mine, but it is very convenient and quick.

Name:  PC300006.jpg
Views: 225
Size:  261.7 KB

The straps are looped around the axle and then bolted together using two metal plates and four bolts/nuts. They came apart very easily.

The straps are mounted across the rubber bumper stop against the chassis with two bolts. I was dreading this. It was one of the reason I got myself my Christmas air hammer, just in case.

I tried undoing the bolts with an impact screwdriver (they have a philips head). Problem is, with the axle on axle stands, there is not enough room to swing a hammer properly.

So I decided something differently. I positioned the impact screwdriver with a hydraulic jack underneath to keep it all tight together and the screw bit in the bolt head.. Then I used a wrench on the screwdriver bit. Sure enough, it came apart quite easily!!!

Name:  PC300007.jpg
Views: 225
Size:  402.6 KB

This is what is all looks like off the car:

Name:  PC300009.jpg
Views: 222
Size:  330.6 KB

Name:  PC300011.jpg
Views: 220
Size:  346.4 KB

I had bought the straps earlier, but the rubber stops were in a bad shape too.

Name:  PC300010.jpg
Views: 222
Size:  283.8 KB

Name:  PC300012.jpg
Views: 218
Size:  357.6 KB

Luckily, Goos was open for business today and had two of them in stock, so I drove over quickly and got two new ones.

The right bumper stop was ok-ish, the left one was broken. But it was not until I got the new ones, I realised how poorly the right one looked and felt too. These new ones are very stiff. I canít compress them with my hands/fingers. How ever the old ones I could.

Name:  PC300027.jpg
Views: 227
Size:  276.6 KB

I cleaned all metal parts with my pneumatic steel brush. very easy, very rewarding, very messy

Name:  PC300013.jpg
Views: 220
Size:  288.7 KB

Name:  PC300015.jpg
Views: 224
Size:  418.0 KB

Made a quick make-shift spray paint set up in the garden. I had bought some new Hammerite paint the other day. So that came in handy

Name:  PC300016.jpg
Views: 225
Size:  430.0 KB

Name:  PC300017.jpg
Views: 237
Size:  498.8 KB

For good measure, also resprayed underneath the car where the straps and stops are mounted. Nobody will ever see, but that is not a good reason not to fix things properly.

Name:  PC300018.jpg
Views: 221
Size:  315.8 KB

When doing these sort of jobs, everything gets very dusty. These parts tend to be covered in muck and sand and rust. So go figure. I keep cleaning in between as otherwise it gets everywhere.

Name:  PC300019.jpg
Views: 219
Size:  321.6 KB

I always do three layers of the Hammerite 15 minutes apart. So between spraying these three layers some time to do a bit of tidying up and cleaning.

Name:  PC300021.jpg
Views: 217
Size:  396.7 KB

Also brushed all the bots and nuts. Next put them to soak in rust remover for a bit.

Name:  PC300022.jpg
Views: 220
Size:  284.8 KB

After the third layer of spraying, I moved all the parts inside the garage to harden and cure overnight:

Name:  PC300026.jpg
Views: 220
Size:  355.1 KB

Itís still about 8oC inside my garage and reasonably dry so that should be fine with Hammerite. (You are not supposed to use it below 5oC.)

As I mentioned I was very pleased with my little pneumatic tool. Other than it leaked on the regulator valve. So I took it apart. Watch the little ball bearing and spring!

Name:  PC300025.jpg
Views: 220
Size:  222.8 KB

Name:  PC300023.jpg
Views: 219
Size:  255.5 KB

The regulator has one simple O-ring. Luckily I stock any size O-ring and then some!

Name:  PC300024.jpg
Views: 220
Size:  337.2 KB

Assembled everything with a bit of white grease. All is well, no more leak.

I also took the opportunity to clean the back of the two rear wheels as they were off too!.

So all is ready for assembly. Stay tuned


Last edited by Jeroen : 30th December 2020 at 22:43.
Jeroen is offline   (4) Thanks
Old 31st December 2020, 22:31   #774
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Delhi
Posts: 6,605
Thanked: 32,200 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

Last day of the year, so time to finish the rebound strap job on the Spider!

Inside/back of the wheels look really clean. No matter what, with wheels left on the car, you can never ever get the inside/back cleaned properly.

Name:  PC310015.jpg
Views: 207
Size:  279.7 KB

All re-sprayed parts looked clean and fresh:

Name:  PC310002.jpg
Views: 205
Size:  307.4 KB

I decided to fix the straps themselves first before bolting them with the bumper stops to the car. I thought this would make life a little easier as the connecting plates with the four little bolts sit very closely to the bumper stop. Making it more difficult to mount them afterwards.

Name:  PC310003.jpg
Views: 202
Size:  325.7 KB

Even with very simple parts you need to pay attention on how it all bolts together. These little plates/brackets that connect the ends of the straps have a little raised edge. They need to be mounted so they press into the strap!

Name:  PC310010.jpg
Views: 211
Size:  293.5 KB

I spread a liberal amount of mounting paste on all bolts. The changes of my having to do this job again on the Spider are less than remote. I am 61 and the last set of rebound straps lasted 34 years. All though I would like to think I will still be fiddling with cars at 95, it might not be that realistic. Still, any job doing, is worth doing it properly.

Put the bumper stopper, filler and plate up:

Name:  PC310004.jpg
Views: 208
Size:  355.6 KB

I had to use four separate pieces of tooling to come up with this ingenious device to torque the bolts in the bumper stopper. Worked a treat! Just shows you never ever can have too many tools.

Name:  PC310005.jpg
Views: 212
Size:  282.1 KB

Name:  PC310009.jpg
Views: 206
Size:  283.2 KB

One side done, this is with the car still sitting on the axle stands. So this is similar as standing on its wheels; rebound straps are all loose, as it should be.

Name:  PC310007.jpg
Views: 212
Size:  444.8 KB

Name:  PC310008.jpg
Views: 213
Size:  385.5 KB

Went pretty smoothly. Did the other side too.

I jacked up the car, lifted it off the axle stands. This too simulate the Spider flying through the air during a bit of too enthusiastic driving. (it happens! . And of course, when doing maintenance, on a lift, or just like this on a jack.

The straps take up the load as advertised:

Name:  PC310012.jpg
Views: 207
Size:  304.2 KB

Name:  PC310013.jpg
Views: 212
Size:  313.4 KB

Name:  PC310014.jpg
Views: 207
Size:  327.7 KB

All done! Next job is the rear calibers, discs, pad and brake hose.

I spend about 4,5 hours yesterday on taking everything apart, cleaning and respraying. Putting it all back on took less than an hour.

I am not a professional mechanic, but still it does show why restoring and maintaining old cars can be so expensive. The total cost of the parts was less than Euro 100. But here in Western Europe a professional car mechanic will charge you easily upwards of Euro 75 per hour.

On Monday I am taking the Jaguar and the Spider Paravan to Johan for their respective spray jobs. I want to have the brake job done by then, so I can turn around the Spider once again as that will be easier to mount the Paravan again.

Attached Images

Last edited by Jeroen : 31st December 2020 at 22:33.
Jeroen is offline   (5) Thanks
Old 31st December 2020, 23:56   #775
Distinguished - BHPian
Thad E Ginathom's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Chennai
Posts: 10,194
Thanked: 20,430 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

Very interesting task, Jeroen. Well done, as usual!

Happy New Year!
Thad E Ginathom is offline   (2) Thanks
Old 3rd January 2021, 22:00   #776
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Delhi
Posts: 6,605
Thanked: 32,200 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

Got going on the brakes of the Spider today. I had all the parts available: new discs, new calibers, new pads, new brake hose. All set, so let's go!!

Replacing the rear ones on the Spider should be a very straight forward job. But as you will see, it rarely is.

As always when replacing bits of the brakes, first order of business is to empty out the brake fluid reservoir as much as possible. Make sure to cover everything against possible splashes. Brake fluid is very corrosive, it will eat through your paint in no time!

Name:  P1030001.jpg
Views: 168
Size:  402.1 KB

Get yourself one of these huge syringes. Very handy for this kind of job.

Name:  P1030002.jpg
Views: 163
Size:  370.7 KB

So this is what it all looks like.

I am not quite sure how long ago I replaced and or overhauled some of this. I know I had all the brake calibers overhauled some twenty years ago. And the pads have been replaced at least once. I don’t think I have ever done the discs. But as you might recalled I did measure them last winter and decided the front ones definitely needed replacing and the rear ones would last another season.

So here we are, one season later. You can obtain overhaul sets and overhaul the calibers yourself. I have done that in the past. Early on in this thread you can see me helping my old neighbour Toon doing this on his Mercedes W123.

These days a complete refurbished set of calibers is not that expensive anymore. Messing around with stuck pistons, trying to install these blasted rubber boots and so, ain’t no picnic. Can take anywhere between a few minutes and several hours. So these days I just replace the calibers with refurbished ones.

Name:  P1030003.jpg
Views: 166
Size:  293.3 KB

First thing is to punch out the check pins and take out the cross spring.

Name:  P1030004.jpg
Views: 167
Size:  359.9 KB

In order to get the brake pads out, you usually need to push the piston inwards a bit. There are 2 billion YouTube video’s with tips and tricks, I just used an adjustable spanner. To date it has never failed me. Another reason to empty the brake fluid reservoir. When you push the pistons back, the level of the reservoir will rise!!

Name:  P1030005.jpg
Views: 175
Size:  353.2 KB

With the pistons sufficiently pushed back the brake pads can be taken out easily.

Name:  P1030006.jpg
Views: 168
Size:  374.3 KB

I am going to replace the common brake hose later on, but till I do I prefer to have as little brake fluid leakage as I can. I have this simple hose clamp:

Name:  P1030007.jpg
Views: 166
Size:  337.7 KB

Put it on the brake hose, squeezed it and secured it. Not a drop of brake fluid will be coming out now. Part of the problem is the reservoir, it has two compartments, you can only extract fluid from the front reservoir. The front reservoir spills over into the rear reservoir when it is almost full. It is a safety feature. If you ever suffer a broken hydraulic line, or a problem with a seal on your piston, half of the system will still retain its Brake fluid and will still operate. The Spider is pretty unique in the sense that it has front / rear separation and not diagonally as is most common on most cars.

All clamped down

Name:  P1030008.jpg
Views: 165
Size:  354.1 KB

Undo the nut of the hydraulic line on the caliber. Not a drop of fluid came out!!

Name:  P1030009.jpg
Views: 168
Size:  313.7 KB

The calibers itself is mounted with two M17 bolts.

Name:  P1030010.jpg
Views: 171
Size:  267.2 KB

Once you have loosened those the whole assembly falls into your hands easily!

Name:  P1030012.jpg
Views: 167
Size:  273.0 KB

I was pleased to see that the rubber seals were still in decent condition!

Name:  P1030014.jpg
Views: 167
Size:  240.8 KB

Next to take the disc off. It is held in place by just two simple screws. That is the theory. On the rear right the theory held though!

Name:  P1030015.jpg
Views: 170
Size:  321.1 KB

With the two screws removed, I could just pull the disc off, no drama at all!

Name:  P1030016.jpg
Views: 165
Size:  307.1 KB

Here you see me measuring the thickness of the brake disc with my special brake measuring calibers. The rim will have an edge on the outer circumference, so you can’t use a regular caliber. But look at the measurement, down to 7mm and that is below what is allowed!

Name:  P1030017.jpg
Views: 164
Size:  355.2 KB

I did a quick inspection of the handbrake mechanism. Blew some compressed air to clean it. Checked everything moved as intended. All is good to go, handbrake wise!

Name:  P1030019.jpg
Views: 167
Size:  276.0 KB

Time to break out the goodies, all the new parts!!

Name:  P1030020.jpg
Views: 167
Size:  366.6 KB

This is what a brand new disc looks like, thickness wise: a solid 9mm!!

Name:  P1030021.jpg
Views: 165
Size:  344.9 KB

As always check the old versus the new parts for sizes!!

Name:  P1030022.jpg
Views: 165
Size:  307.3 KB

These news discs always come with some sort of preservative on them. So you need to clean them thoroughly with brake cleaner. If you forget, you are likely to ruin your new brake pads the first time you use the brakes!!

Name:  P1030024.jpg
Views: 166
Size:  335.1 KB

I always put a very thin coat of white vaseline on the hub, just so it doesn’t bind.

Name:  P1030025.jpg
Views: 165
Size:  301.5 KB

New disc put back on, starting to look good!!!

Name:  P1030026.jpg
Views: 165
Size:  252.3 KB

Last edited by Jeroen : 3rd January 2021 at 22:02.
Jeroen is offline   (6) Thanks
Old 3rd January 2021, 22:15   #777
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Delhi
Posts: 6,605
Thanked: 32,200 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

Next to get the new caliber ready.

Name:  P1030027.jpg
Views: 173
Size:  214.7 KB

As you might recall, the brake piston on the Spider (and the W123) need to be mounted in a special orientation.

These new calibers came with special metal brackets securing the piston in the correct orientation!! Had not seen that before.

Name:  P1030029.jpg
Views: 169
Size:  285.1 KB

Name:  P1030030.jpg
Views: 170
Size:  332.3 KB

Obviously, I don’t just trust anything to come out of somebodies factory to be perfect, so I got my own little brake templates out:

Name:  P1030031.jpg
Views: 170
Size:  279.5 KB

Here you see the piston and it also becomes clear what is meant with orientation. incorrect orientation can lead to brake squeak at best, brake binding at worst.

Name:  P1030034.jpg
Views: 169
Size:  348.9 KB

But my own tools confirmed the pistons were installed up to specification!

Name:  P1030033.jpg
Views: 168
Size:  368.3 KB

All bolts brushed clean and some copper slip paste on them prior to re-installing them

Name:  P1030035.jpg
Views: 173
Size:  284.7 KB

It is important to observe the correct torquing of the caliber bolts, in this case 44-54 Nm.

Name:  P1030036.jpg
Views: 168
Size:  276.0 KB

I am using my smallest of my two torque wrenches. For two reasons. The first reason when using a torque wrench you want it to be at the higher end of the scale to be as precise as can be. So my larger torque wrench has a much bigger scale and 44-54Nm would be in the bottom 25% range. Also, in this particular case, it is a little easier working with a smaller wrench anyway.

Name:  P1030037.jpg
Views: 171
Size:  396.5 KB

With the calibers attached back to the car, time to mount the brand new brake pads. These brake pads need to be mounted in a particular position as well. The arrow has to point into the direction of (normal ) travel of the wheel.

Name:  P1030039.jpg
Views: 173
Size:  303.4 KB

I always apply, carefully, some copper paste to the sides of the pad as well. Might prevent some squealing.

Name:  P1030040.jpg
Views: 168
Size:  302.7 KB

Beginning to look pretty good:

Name:  P1030041.jpg
Views: 167
Size:  329.3 KB

Right rear side all done!!

Name:  P1030042.jpg
Views: 166
Size:  280.3 KB

I was very pleased with how this little job went. All done in about 45 minutes, which is really good. So I told my wife; Let me just do the left one too and be ready in an hour so we go for a little drive / walk.

Well, I spoke way to soon. The left rear was an utter b^&*h. It took me almost two hours to get the disc off!!

Name:  P1030043.jpg
Views: 168
Size:  321.5 KB

I used every trick in the book, a few tricks that have not been invented yet. In the end applying a torch to the disc and two tyre levers from the back managed to pop it off!

I checked and the new one won’t go on either. So some carefully grinding might be called for! More to come!!

Attached Images

Last edited by Jeroen : 3rd January 2021 at 22:17.
Jeroen is offline   (6) Thanks
Old 5th January 2021, 14:12   #778
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Delhi
Posts: 6,605
Thanked: 32,200 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

Continued, and finished I might add, the brake work on the Spider yesterday.

First order of business: Make the disc slide onto the hub. I could have just taken a hammer and whacked it on. After all, it came off, by using enough force. And I hate to say this, but it is very likely the last time I replaced discs on this car. They will easily last 75-100k kilometers, and I probably wonít.

But I am too much of a hard core engineer, and nerd, to do that. Every job worth doing, is worth doing properly.

So I carefully checked where the disc was getting stuck by wiggling it back and forth. Initially I tried my pneumatic grinder.

Name:  P1040001.jpg
Views: 153
Size:  314.0 KB

It was a little bit too bulky and I grinding into the studs!. So back to something smaller: out comes the Dremel.

Name:  P1040002.jpg
Views: 150
Size:  327.0 KB

I swear, every man should have a Dremel. This little tool tends to be advertised as the gift for ďdads who are difficult to buy gifts forĒ. Even if you have one, a second one will come in handy, just in case. Show you better half this post and make sure all your loved ones know, this is something you really crave for and desperately need!!

Took just a few minutes with the Dremel and presto: A perfect fit!

Name:  P1040003.jpg
Views: 152
Size:  326.6 KB

Next, I was going to replace the brake hose. Which meant getting underneath the car. Which meant I had to lift the rear up higher.

Name:  P1040005.jpg
Views: 150
Size:  382.0 KB

I will be honest, even with two very sturdy axle stands and two jacks in place I am never entirely comfortable crawling under a car. Especially when working alone. I could have asked my wife to come and watch. But I donít think that would work at all. She is convinced I will be killing myself, or at least maiming myself seriously one of these days working on my cars or my lathe. So asking her to watch the Spider not falling on top of me is probably not a good idea.

Name:  P1040006.jpg
Views: 152
Size:  414.9 KB

Here you see the original one. Those beat up looking hoses are the protective covers of the steel fuel lines, so no worries! I do need to replace some of the fuel hoses at some point in time. But these are ok.

Name:  P1040008.jpg
Views: 151
Size:  325.2 KB

When working on brake lines make sure you always use two wrenches. One to steady the part, the other to undo the nut. Itís easy to bend them and the inside diameter is very small, so you might cause a blocking of the tube.

Both ends came loose very easily. Which was a nice surprise as this part has been on the car for the better part of 25 years easily!

Old and new:

Name:  P1040009.jpg
Views: 153
Size:  243.6 KB

New brake hose installed.

Name:  P1040013.jpg
Views: 149
Size:  357.2 KB

Next bleeding the brakes. I have shown the use of my Easy bleed set earlier in this thread several times. As you might recall it gets pressurised by hooking it up to a tyre. As the max pressure is only 1.4 bar you need to partially deflate the tyre. It is a very reliable and good mechanism. Especially if you are on the road and need to do a roadside job. But in my garage I can do better, so I decided to make an adapter so I can hook up my EasyBleed to my compressor set.

If you followed my model engine making adventures earlier in this thread or the new separate thread, you will have seen me messing up various parts. I keep all messed up parts in a separate bin. Itís a pretty full bin let me tell you.

I knew I had one messed up part that could be modified: Believe it or not but this is the main bearing of a Wobbler Steam Engine! It will, once modified, into the tyre connector of the EasyBleed

Name:  P1040014.jpg
Views: 153
Size:  271.7 KB

Into the lathe for some minor adjustments:

Name:  P1040015.jpg
Views: 153
Size:  359.3 KB

Ready, similar dimension to a tyre valve!!

Name:  P1040016.jpg
Views: 153
Size:  266.2 KB

Name:  P1040017.jpg
Views: 147
Size:  291.1 KB

Now I just needed something to connect this part to my pneumatic hose. When I bought the air blow attachment (whatís the correct word), it came with two nozzles. A very long pointy one (that I always use) and a short stubby one. I decided to modify the stubby one.

Name:  P1040018.jpg
Views: 153
Size:  329.5 KB

I was going to cut thread on it and tap thread on the part I made earlier so the would fit together tightly.

Name:  P1040019.jpg
Views: 148
Size:  378.9 KB

However, the nozzle appeared to have a fairly large inside bore, so when I started cutting thread it broke off. But I still managed to salvage enough to make a good enough adaptor. It looks a bit odd and crude, but it did the job.

Name:  P1040020.jpg
Views: 148
Size:  281.0 KB

Here you see it in action:

Name:  P1040022.jpg
Views: 152
Size:  412.5 KB

Bleeding each brake using my nifty special hose with the bicycle valve. Works a treat.

Name:  P1040023.jpg
Views: 151
Size:  368.3 KB

I spend quite a bit of time bleeding the rear brakes, but the pedal never felt a hundred percent right. So I took the car of the axle stands / jacks and re positioned it. The Jaguar is out of the way, earlier I took it to Johan for its little re-spray.

Name:  P1040025.jpg
Views: 153
Size:  402.4 KB

I bled both front brakes as well, re-did the rear ones and it still wasnít right. So I also bled all the connections of the new brake hose. That did the trick. Pedal feels rock solid now!

I have not been able to test drive it yet. I am not supposed to take it out on the public road till 1st of March. But I am pretty sure it will do.

I also had to take the left rear wheel off again. I forgot to adjust the brake shoes of the hand brake. I wound them in, when I was having trouble getting that blasted disc off.

Final job; torqueing the wheel nuts:

Name:  P1040026.jpg
Views: 147
Size:  270.4 KB

With the Spider all done, I decided to cut open the old brake hose. Just to see how it looked inside. Old brake lines can cause a bit of spongy-pedal feeling. When the inside becomes old, it might start to crack.

This one was not to bad actually:

Name:  P1040027.jpg
Views: 153
Size:  261.6 KB

Note how small the inside diameter of these brake hoses are, similar to the steel brake lines. It only takes a small object to cause a serious blockage.

Name:  P1040028.jpg
Views: 156
Size:  217.7 KB

When working on brakes always make sure everything is very clean and tidy when you start assembling. I always blow air across every nut, seal etc. Just in case.

Next job is re-installing the new Paravan when I comes back from Johan with a new coat of paint. Hopefully later this week.


Last edited by Jeroen : 5th January 2021 at 14:15.
Jeroen is offline   (4) Thanks
Old 5th January 2021, 18:04   #779
Distinguished - BHPian
Thad E Ginathom's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Chennai
Posts: 10,194
Thanked: 20,430 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

Super job, Jeroen. Maybe your disc might have fitted after a couple of hours in the oven? I'd be scared to take a hammer to something like that, in case things ended up eccentric. But I'm sure that, even when you do take a hammer to things, it's an engineer's hammer!

Nice to see a bit of machining coming into the job too. How great to have those tools at your disposal.
Thad E Ginathom is offline  
Old 5th January 2021, 18:29   #780
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Bengaluru
Posts: 4,370
Thanked: 2,246 Times
Default Re: My Car Hobby: A lot of fiddling, and some driving too! Jaguar XJR, Mercedes W123 & Alfa Romeo Sp

Didn't know about the rebound straps ! Great dirty DIY jobs you are doing. You keep everything tidy and in order in your work flow. Seem to go through lot of gloves too
srishiva is offline  

Most Viewed
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Copyright ©2000 - 2022,
Proudly powered by E2E Networks