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Old 06-15-2014, 09:53 PM   #351
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Re: The Roach Motel

Quote:
Originally Posted by sdwarf36
Ouch! Are buying lines from the dealer-and having them install them? Thats crazy expensive. A 5 ft section of 3/16" line from the parts store is under $10 -a cheapo flairing tool maybe $35 + cutter $20. Just like all the new stuff you learn from building an interior, its just another skill to aquire.
If MI. is like Ct., they now squirt some form of brine on the roads before a snowstorm-rather than salt after it starts. And the amount of under vehicle rot has drastically increased.
I'd have been happy to tackle the repairs but time was against me. I did look up the finer points of building brake lines and it didn't look like any big deal, just had too many irons in the fire. Shelling out all that cash was NOT my favorite thing.

Interestingly enough, I used three different shops for the repairs and all three were charging about $200 per installed line. The cost of auto repairs is pretty insane.
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Old 06-16-2014, 03:20 PM   #352
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Re: The Roach Motel

Just a note on brake line flairs. The cheapo flaring tools can't do the DOT approved double flare where the end of the line is first bent in followed by being flared out--you'll see what I mean if you look at the end of a factory flared line. The reason for the double flare is that the outer edges of the double flare doesn't split at the pipe seam and leak.
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Old 06-16-2014, 03:59 PM   #353
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Re: The Roach Motel

Yeah, I took the "Internet Brake Line Flaring class" when the second line let go. Couldn't put the knowledge to good use but I'll know how next time. Of course, next time I have this problem I'll probably be 90 and won't be able to crawl around under the beast like I can now.

It would be interesting to make a list of the new skills I've learned while doing our conversion. If I'm really bored some winter's day I may just give it a go.
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Old 06-16-2014, 09:09 PM   #354
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Re: The Roach Motel

Quote:
Originally Posted by ol trunt
Just a note on brake line flairs. The cheapo flaring tools can't do the DOT approved double flare where the end of the line is first bent in followed by being flared out--you'll see what I mean if you look at the end of a factory flared line. The reason for the double flare is that the outer edges of the double flare doesn't split at the pipe seam and leak.
My father-in-law (sort of?) let me use his kit from Harbour Freight a couple months ago. It could double flare and it cost him all of $25... worked fine. It was a two part process. I'm not sure if the better ones do it in one step, but for a few brake lines it really wasn't a big deal.

Moral of the story: read the package. Make sure it's legit.
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Old 06-16-2014, 11:17 PM   #355
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Re: The Roach Motel

Thanks Jazty, thats a really good tip. I'll have to see if my local HF stocks them as it would be handy to have. As far as I know the double flare is always a two step process which makes the HF tool look all that much more interesting.
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Old 06-17-2014, 10:20 AM   #356
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Re: The Roach Motel

I guess the "good news" is that in spite of the expense...it worked out a whole lot cheaper than if any of the three had involved a crash. And given that the average bus can take out a medium sized motel...probably a LOT cheaper.

Monty Python --- "Always look on the bright side of life".
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Old 06-17-2014, 05:15 PM   #357
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Re: The Roach Motel

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tango
I guess the "good news" is that in spite of the expense...it worked out a whole lot cheaper than if any of the three had involved a crash. And given that the average bus can take out a medium sized motel...probably a LOT cheaper.

Monty Python --- "Always look on the bright side of life".
Roger that! If you think you've got it tough, just look around.

The Buick lost it's front brakes but I didn't try to drive it. The bus and my van both lost the rear brakes and I drove both of them home then to the shop. The front brakes alone did a pretty fair job of getting both vehicles stopped even though there was a LOT of pedal travel. I wouldn't want to drive in heavy traffic with half my brakes out, but it wasn't as traumatic as I imagined i would be.

Whoever thought up the split braking system did us all a huge favor.

The video I saw showed the double flare as a two-step process. The first step "bulged" the end of the tube and the second step folded the bulge back on itself to make the flare.
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Old 06-17-2014, 08:03 PM   #358
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Re: The Roach Motel

Yea--Its actually pretty easy. Every mechanic I know has the exact same kit-made by either KD or Lisle. It comes with a a clamp "vice" that holds the line- and piece that makes the flair-and a screw clamp with a point on it. You leave a bit of line out clamp vice (using that piece to set up the right height) the piece now gets put over the line-and you tighten it down till it bottoms out--thats flair #1. Now remove that piece + put the pointy end in the end of the line + tighten down-thats flair#2.

Edit: Oh lookie http://www.ebay.com/itm/10-Pc-Brake-Air ... ls&vxp=mtr

Other tool you need-a tubing cutter-i recommend the "Imp" style -its small + can get in tight places. http://www.ebay.com/itm/Mini-Tubing-Cut ... 35ce8b779e

And this is the get you out of trouble fix. Cut the line at the leak-clean up both sides with some sandpaper + install thhttp://www.ebay.com/itm/Allstar-Brake ... &vxp=mtris ferruled fitting.
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Old 06-26-2014, 10:05 PM   #359
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Re: The Roach Motel

We had a very weird adventure last weekend.

So there we were, heading home from the family camp on Sunday at about 4:30pm when I hear a "clunk" at the back of the bus and look back in time to see a small "something" bouncing down the expressway behind us. It could have been from another vehicle and the engine was running fine so we kept driving but a couple of miles down the road the windshield fogged up and I could smell antifreeze so we pulled into the breakdown lane for a quick look. The power steering and power brakes had lost their power so I knew I had a problem with the serpentine belt. Popping the hood revealed that the belt was fine but one of the idler pulleys on the tensioner had called it a day and bailed out. Fortunately we were near an exit with a gas station so we got off the road to decide what to do next.

I knew I could fix the thing with the tools I had with us but how to get that bloody part late on a Sunday afternoon? Just when we were about to call for a tow THIS GUY pulls up in a nasty, ratty old pickup truck, rolls down the window and says "I'm a mechanic. Can I give you a hand?" I said that he most certainly could so he had a look and said he could pick up the part and install it for $100 plus the part. It all sounded too good to be true so I went inside ostensibly to get us each a Mountain Dew and while in there slipped my carry pistol into my pocket. The guy called Autozone to reserve the part and asked if I could front him some cash to pay for it. I gave him $80 bucks for a $62 dollar part and off he went to pick it up. I'm generally a trusting person but the thought crossed my mind that he could just take the cash and head for the bar.

While he was gone I pulled off the engine cowling and about the time I had it off here he comes, part in hand. We proceeded to pop the thing in and check for collateral damage (apart from some nicked fan blades there was none). I gave the guy the hundred he'd asked for plus a nice tip and we talked about the bus and our conversion for a bit. Turns out that the guy would cruise up and down that stretch of the expressway looking for broken down vehicles. He would change tires, arrange for towing or fix stuff himself for (tax free) cash. Not a bad gig.

He was quite the jokester and yakked on and on but bottom line, from the time we broke down to the time we were repaired and on our way was about an hour.

Neither of us could believe our luck. Had we gotten towed we'd have probably spent the night in some repair shop's parking lot and paid twice as much for the fix. Instead, we got home just a bit later than we normally would have. The whole thing was surreal.
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Old 06-26-2014, 11:52 PM   #360
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Re: The Roach Motel

Sometimes...life is grand --- When it is, I just say "thank you".
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