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Fireman049

Brake/Clutch Fluid?

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When I rebuilt my 3A in the late '70's I used all new cylinders & Kunifer brake lines with SBF. Haven't had any issues with it. I changed the fluid after about 22 years just because it seemed about time I did. At one stage, I think early '90's, I didn't use the car for about 6 years - clutch plate was stuck to flywheel but once freed off, with a bang, drove to the local garage & got an MoT - no problems.

So after 38+ years I'm sticking with it! If spilled around reservoir it comes up with a nice shine.

 

Phil.

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I see this thread is still going.

 

There have been a couple of comments about water possibly sinking to the low points in the brake system, and while it's true that most DOT5 brake fluids are slightly lighter than water, not all of them are. Regulations leave significant leeway in the actual composition of silicone based products.

 

So if someone is inclined to use DOT5, but is concerned about moisture in low spots, there are options. Links to a couple are below. They list the products' specific gravity, viscosity, and wet and dry boiling points.

 

I assume these or other products like them would be available internationally.

 

https://www.berkebileoil.com/brake-fluid---dot-5.html

http://www.smittysinc.net/userfiles/productLiterature/SuperS_Dot5_Brake_Fluid.pdf

 

Ed

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I've used SBF for the past 23 years in my 1955 TR3 (Lockheed braking system) and have experiences no problems whatsoever, not even so much as leaking wheel or master cylinder. During that time there's been some pretty quick driving and on occasions some pretty quick stopping!

 

In my opinion a lot of what's said against SBF is in the realms of myth and fantasy. In all that time I've never heard a convincing argument or seen a convincing demonstration against the stuff.

 

In comparison, over the same period my 1964 TR4, which uses DOT 4,has had its clutch and brake master cylinders rebuilt twice due to leaking rubbers and I've also changed two seized calipers and the rubbers in the rear cylinders. If that wasn't enough I've also had to respray the engine bay in the area of the master cylinders and on the inside drivers side of the car the front.bulkhead and floor due to brake fluid leaking from the master cylinders and down past the pedal box.

 

I have to say that both cars demonstrate similar stopping power - but I sure know which takes less maintenance!

 

Cheers,

 

JeffR

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I've used SBF for the past 23 years in my 1955 TR3 (Lockheed braking system) and have experiences no problems whatsoever, not even so much as leaking wheel or master cylinder. During that time there's been some pretty quick driving and on occasions some pretty quick stopping!

 

In my opinion a lot of what's said against SBF is in the realms of myth and fantasy. In all that time I've never heard a convincing argument or seen a convincing demonstration against the stuff.

 

In comparison, over the same period my 1964 TR4, which uses DOT 4,has had its clutch and brake master cylinders rebuilt twice due to leaking rubbers and I've also changed two seized calipers and the rubbers in the rear cylinders. If that wasn't enough I've also had to respray the engine bay in the area of the master cylinders and on the inside drivers side of the car the front.bulkhead and floor due to brake fluid leaking from the master cylinders and down past the pedal box.

 

I have to say that both cars demonstrate similar stopping power - but I sure know which takes less maintenance!

 

Cheers,

 

JeffR

 

Tend to agree Jeff. No real problems with SBF in my 4 or 4A. The 4A has had the stuff in the system for over 10 years.

Cheers.

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Thats a waste of time Im afraid as the water will accumulate at the bottom of the cylinders and the bleed nipples are at the top.

Stuart.

Hi Stuart

That is a very good point.

The reason I started doing this drain thing is some years ago I changed a wheel cylinder and when I bled the brakes there appeared to be water in the fluid. I suppose to clean out any water will require a strip down of the calipers and cylinders?

 

George

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Thanks Monty.

 

Forgot to mention in the jobs listed on my TR4 due to DOT 4 brake fluid, that whilst doing one of the rebuilds to the clutch slave cylinder a spot of fluid accidentally escaped from the unit (not that I noticed at the time) and landed neatly in the centre of my freshly painted bonnet. I had only just the week before collected the car from the spray shop after a full body respray.

 

You can imagine my feelings at the time (think of Basil Fawlty whipping his Austin 1100 with a sapling). The whole bonnet had to be resprayed at a cost of several hundred pounds. DOT 4 - I love it!

 

Cheers,

 

JEFF

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Tend to agree Jeff. No real problems with SBF in my 4 or 4A. The 4A has had the stuff in the system for over 10 years.

Cheers.

Hi Monty I've sent you a PM.

Chris

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Hi Stuart

That is a very good point.

The reason I started doing this drain thing is some years ago I changed a wheel cylinder and when I bled the brakes there appeared to be water in the fluid. I suppose to clean out any water will require a strip down of the calipers and cylinders?

 

George

 

Unbolt calliper, invert, bleed.

Or find some of that fancy high density SG. > 1 SBF. I've looked (thanks for the tip, Ed_H) and can't find any in the UK. Mind you, many don't even specify that parameter.

 

Cheers, Richard

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I have used SBF in my two TRs for over 20 years. I have no bubbling paint under the reservoir area and I have had no problems with sticky pistons after long layups. One of the cars was used for hillclimbing and sprinting with no problems. If I was racing I would consider changing to a racing spec fluid.

I think SBF is a great fluid for the classic car enthusiast for use in cars where this product is non injurious to paint and where it will be in the system for a long time without attention. Of course the car manufacturers want a product that needs to be changed every 2 years - it is one of the few things that demands a service these days where mostly cars are just 'inspected'.

Keith

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That wont help you as water sits below the silicone and you bleed from the top

I have used SBF in my TR6 for the about 20 years with absolutely no problem, the only thing I do differently is every couple of years I drain some of the fluid from each bleed valve to hopefully remove any water that has got into the system.
When going abroad with the car I do take a bottle of SBF as I could see problems getting it in say rural France if there is troubles with the hydraulics.

George

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Hi Folks,

this thread is, in my opinion, a complete waste of time. Just like GB/OD oil (what is right, what is wrong) and oil/grease for the trunnions.

 

People do what they want to whether it is right or wrong.

Each material has a benefit. if you wish to exploit one benefit over another that is your choice.

 

I know what and why I use.

 

Roger

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Well said that man

 

Bob.

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I agree roger,

 

however when one looks in the engine bay and can see all the damaged paint work

you tend to look for an answer, I did,

the fluid tends to get under the paint and soften it,lifts it, then you start to see bare metal

and you feel sick, pissed of, wondering if I did the nuts up on the master cylinder,clutch cylinder etc

some people don't care others do,

I looked for an answer, and changed to SBF I did change all the flexibles, cylinders, washed all the pipes out,

I believe that removing every trace of dot 4 is the secret, never had a problem with it, never had a leak, no soft peddle

I think it is great,

 

roger you mentioned skydrol I was working on a dc 9 in Norway and a large hydrolic pipe split showering my head with

the fluid, I wad put naked in a decontamination shower, washed down then taken to hospital to have my eyes washed out,

it was a terrifying experience it burns your skin, and I thought I was going to go blind, however I was ok

 

pink x

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Hi Pinky,

anybody that has worked with 'Skydrol' has a certain routine to their hygiene habits. Wash hands BEFORE going to the loo etc.

Nasty stuff, bt an excellent paint stripper.

 

Regarding your paint work; you chose one benefit over the other. And that is your choice

 

Roger

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I'm not sure what the other benefit Is?

 

Maybe we should have a rule - never drive in front of a car using SBF?!

 

Cheers,

 

JEFF

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I was rather hoping this pointless debate would have fizzled out by now, but I am to be disappointed, it seems.

 

John

 

No offence to Mr Pink and Roger, btw, I found their comments on Skydrol very interesting.

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No offence taken

 

however if a person wants to carry on posting about it,

 

what is the problem , if your fed up with don't read it,

 

pink

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You can please some of the people some of the time but you cannot please all of the people all of the time!

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In spite of what the number suggests, DOT 5.1 is not a variant of DOT 5. It is much closer to DOT 3/4 than to DOT5.

 

Ed

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Hi Jochem,

I thought it was developed for the ABS on modern cars.

The control valve system in ABS can cause frothing (aeration) and DOT 5.1 resists this frothing.

 

Roger

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Hello Roger,

DOT 5.1 has a lower viscosity at low temperatures, thereby improving vehicle dynamics control systems needing active pressure build-up.

Therore, It finds more use in vehicles with ABS and TC.

Jochem

Edited by JochemsTR

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