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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Brake repair advice please!

1982 GL Wagon Brakes disc rotor calipers brake pads

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3 replies to this topic

#1 scoot_loops



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  • seattle, wa

Posted 03 September 2013 - 02:23 PM

Hey guys, i need some advice on how to handle this particular situation,


as some of you know, i've been around the forums here asking for advice on various things with my 82 wagon, affectionately named Ruth.


So, I'm at the point where i need to decide if it is worth taking Ruth to the mechanic to have the brakes worked on, or if working on the brakes is something that My friend and I can handle. My buddy is pretty mechanically inclined, and has done brake work on similar manual brake systems including a 1970 Camaro, and a few VW bugs. I personally have never done any sort of brake work.


So here is whats wrong as far as i have deduced.


Brake Pads - They are shot on front passenger side. One of them broke off completely when i was checking them out this morning. I looked and it has been pushed out of place from the last time i drove. So there is the brake pad problem.


Brake Rotor - The passenger side brake rotor has a pretty deep bore into the outer most part of the rotor. 99% sure from the busted/worn out pad. So the rotor on that side needs to be replaced, i don't think it can be refinished. 


Calipers - They look fine on both sides, but because of the busted pad i can't really tell. I feel that i should get the calipers replaced on both sides, or at the very least the passenger side.


Brake Pistons - I have not checked, but I think they are fine.


Master Brake Cylinder - Almost entirely positive that there is a busted seal in there. The brakes don't leak when parked, but when the car was driving I had to really keep my eye on the fluid tank. The brake has always been a little spongy, but has always been able to brake, fairly hard on a couple of occasions. Still, There is definitely been air in the system, and i don't know if it was me, or the master cylinder was already busted before I bought Ruth.


Side Note - there is wetness underneath the Master Cylinder, and i think it has dripped over to the brakes on the drivers side. I don't believe the rubber hoses are having an issue or are in need of replacement. I think the fluid is all from somewhere near or in the Master brake Cylinder.



Are these all things that my friend and I, and possibly one of you awesome Forum memebers, could work out? Or should i really take this to a mechanic and have them fix it. Some quick pricing puts me at 200-300 bucks to fix it at home, 500 upwards at a mechanic.


Thanks for the advice guys. I'm located in Mountlake Terrace in Washington if anyone is nearby and wants to join the fun if we make this a home project.



#2 ivantruckman


    4 inch lift

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  • caro, MI.

Posted 03 September 2013 - 03:00 PM

they hydraulic leaks are really going to be tough to diagnose on the forum . just replacing the pads and  rotors is simple . it should be no different than any other car except for the caliper piston screws in instead of  just compressing like most cars .  check your brake lines going to the master cylinder for leaks,  it dosnt make sense that a master cylinder would leak over to the wheel.  can you get pictures ?  and post them ?  it may help .

#3 scoot_loops



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Posted 03 September 2013 - 03:28 PM

ill get pics when i get a chance. My phone was dead when i was working on it this morning. The leak is proving troublesome to identify, the only wetness is in a few places under the Master cylinder, and in areas it looks like the fluid would flow down to from there. Nothing that really screams "There is a hole here!" anywhere else




Thanks, ill get pics up soon, most likely thursday morning, got work and school tomorrow

#4 hatchsub


    Currently Subaru-less :(

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 07:47 PM

It is something you can do yourself.  My advise to you is to start fresh with everything however as brakes are one area that you dont want to screw around with.  SInce your car is an 82 you have non-vented front disks.  SInce you said your rotors are not in the best shape i would take this as an opportunity to upgrade to vented front disks which involves getting parts from a 84+ EA81 car.  If you go into rockauto and type in that you have an 85 Brat it will get you the correct parts.  You will need two loaded calipers which will be fully rebuilt.   Your calipers will not be the same as the vented disk calipers.  If memory serves i think they were something like 37 dollars a side the last time i did mine.  Then you will need rotors.  This is where it gets tricky and you have to do some digging to find a decent rotor.  Ive had generic parts store rotors warp on me from just getting off the highway.  For my former subaru i was able to hunt down a set of Brembo rotors on ebay new in the box from 20 or more years ago.  That would be my suggestion but there are other manufactures of good rotors as well.  Might also want to inspect your flex lines too.  If they are original to the car id replace them for sure. 


As for the leak near the master...is it leaking down the brake booster?  If so the seals on the inside of your Master have taken a dump and its time for a new one.  

Edited by hatchsub, 03 September 2013 - 07:48 PM.

Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: 1982, GL, Wagon, Brakes, disc, rotor, calipers, brake pads

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