Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Safety Wiring the caliper bolts

Just a quick post to show the "really" final step on the front brake installation. The original brakes came with a set of caliper bolts that had holes drilled in the heads to support safety wire. The replacement kit didn't have these, just regular bolts. I decided to keep my old bolts, clean them up and reuse them. I like the look of them and it gives the brakes that final authentic look.

Safety wire is used to secure bolts in place and keep them from backing out. Essentially, the wire puts the bolt head under a little constant tension by pulling the bolt head in the tightening direction. It's sort of like a mechanical version of thread-locker. It's used a lot in aviation on fasteners that are exposed to a lot of shock and vibration - and a failure would be more spectacular - but this is the first time I'd seen it on a regular road car.


Here's the old brakes before they came off. The safety wire is visible holding the two caliper bolts together, but was improperly installed and had a lot of slack, rendering it essentially useless.


The new brake CSRP kit came with regular bolts. The old safety wire-compatible versions fit just fine, so I can reuse the old ones.


I picked up a set of safety wire pliers and some wire from Communist Freight.  The pliers clamp the wire and lock in place, then you pull the handle on the back to spin the pliers in place, twisting the wire as it goes. I had to practice a little bit with them to remember how to do this, as I haven't actually used these since my "government yachting" days. It comes back pretty easy, and there's decent instructions for those who are new to it.

Oh, yeah, use gloves and goggles - that wire will slice flesh at the first opportunity.


Drivers side - the wire is started at the top bolt and wound so puts it under clockwise-tension, then around the bottom of the lower bolt so the wire can pull it in the clockwise direction as well. The extra could get cut off or, like here, wound around the long run. 



Passenger side - same thing. 


Now all that's left for the brakes is the installation of the hard lines.

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