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FFCobra Craftsman
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Just thought I'd post on this...I've made a few brake lines before, but for some reason all the rants on the various Forums about bending, flaring, and leaking problems had me a bit apprehensive about doing them on #3440. In addition, every brake part on my car is unique (dual master cylinders, Wilwood calipers, dual pressure retaining valves, rear hydraulic line lock, brake pressure switch), so I couldn't just buy premade lines without spending almost as much effort modifying them as it would take to make them from scratch. And to top it off, I wanted to use stainless line.

Wish I could post some pics - they came out great! The front brake line (between calipers) has 8 bends (4 are compound curves) and looks better than "factory" - this one piece has given me more satisfaction than anything else I've done so far.

Here's some hints for others about to do their own:

1. Buy a very good quality flaring tool and make some practice flares. Rigid, KD, Snap-on, and Eastman tools (what I bought) are great.

2. Buy a good bender - I used a $10 Harbor Freight tool and regretted it, the radius of the bends is too large. Eastman makes a really good one ($60) that will make a clean 1" diameter bend, which makes it much easier to route lines tightly around the footboxes and frame corners. Always clean and oil the flaring bit for each flare!

Most important, practice bending a few lines and 'learn' your bender - it's important to know how much line length is needed for a 90 degree bend and where your refrence marks should be placed to get consistent bends (i.e. middle of the bend should be at 45 degree line, etc.)

3. Mock up all of your lines using heavy solid wire (I used 10 gauge solid copper from the hardware store), and use them as templetes to bend and place your lines. VERY helpful!

4. Leave the ends about 1" longer than needed and only trim/flare after you have the lines final fitted and placed (trust me on this - you'll thank me later). Try to place a coil, "S", or "U" bend on or near the ends to allow for final adjustment (again, very helpful). I found U bends to be the best looking and most useful.

5. Drill and tap the frame for 10-32 stainless cap head or button head screws for the line clamps - they look far better than the buttugly FFR supplied screws, and are (IMHO) easier to install.

Lastly, weld your rear brake line tabs in place. I forgot and had to rivet some on. On an IRS car, place them in the "inside" of the triangle formed by the short diagonal 3/4" frame tube just above the wheel opening. 14" long soft lines worked fine all around, but 15" might be better up front (would allow a "coil" in the line).

Looks scha-weet :cool: and was actually fun in the end!
 

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Originally posted by Barry Mattingly:


1. Buy a very good quality flaring tool and make some practice flares. Rigid, KD, Snap-on, and Eastman tools (what I bought) are great.

3. Mock up all of your lines using heavy solid wire (I used 10 gauge solid copper from the hardware store), and use them as templetes to bend and place your lines. VERY helpful!

!
I tried using a used ADvance auto set that belonged to a friend. WORTHLESS. I bought a BRAND NEW advance auto setThey were worthless also. BUY a good set like one of the ones he mentions.

number 3 is a very good NEW TO ME idea.

earl

earl
 
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