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Old 06-07-2011, 09:27 AM   #1
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 24
Year: 1967
Coachwork: blue bird
Engine: ford 391
Rated Cap: 72
Brake trouble

so i got my first skoolie and its a 1967 blue bird with a ford 391 industrial and vacuum assist brakes. i know I've got some vacuum leaks in the carb area and my low vacuum light comes on but would this explian why my brakes have to be pumped like 4 times to have them go solid ? there is a remote vacuum booster and another master cyl mounted on that booster as well as a master cyl under the drivers seat when you remove the cap for the one under the seat it has a tendency to back flow and have oil go all over the place. the bus had sat for a number of years and the rear brakes need some force to have them brake free. could this just be a case of bleeding them or something else ? I do have a big fear that if i do just have to bleed them that the bleeding nipple will be imposable to remove due to the age and i'll be stuck looking everywhere for replacement brake cyl, is there a source of parts out there for old girls like mine ?
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Old 06-07-2011, 03:23 PM   #2
Bus Nut
frank-id's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Twin Falls, Idaho
Posts: 806
Not to worry

First get a test vacuum gage and check engine vacuum. If the valves are seating nicely, the gage should show about 21 inches. Brake fluid is supposed to be changed at least once in three years. Remove the m-cylinder cap and insert a finger to check for sludge or lumps or water. Water is a hydraulic brake system's worst enemy. Go the each cylinder and remove each bleeder valve. Use a bench motor wire wheel and clean each carefully. Put anti seize compound all over the bleeder and inside bleeder hole at wheel cylinder. If possible use a vacuum type bleeder to remove all the old fluid. If the fluid is clear, all is good. Fill the m-cylinder and allow fluid to slowly leak out at each location. After the is some evidence of fluid at each wheel, tighten the bleeders, and add fluid to to top of the m-cylinder. Now carefully bleed the cylinders using the foot pedal. The effort will be hard to push but the brake action will operate the same with engine running or not. Observe the fluid level constantly. After a good squirt of fluid is in evidence, time now to adjust all the brake shoes. Tighten the adjuster till the wheel drags a bit then reverse the adjuster to free the wheels. OK, now start the engine and notice brake operation..... Frank
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