With big purchases, I often take too long researching and trying to decide. I have been stewing over the front brakes for a while, but I finally pulled the trigger (or hit the button, as it is). I went with the suggested Wilwood disc system, and now I am in for the penny, with the rest of the pound ahead.
So, as you may recall, I don’t have the original spindles. Given that, my option was to go with the single piston original brake system from 68, or go with something all together new as an after market kit. I didn’t like the idea of a single piston, even though its larger than the 4 piston setup that 67 originally came with. Taking Zach’s recommendation on the aftermarket system seems sound, though, like the suspension, I suspect that it’s heavily overkill.
The kit was the same from several vendors. I started with CJ, but it was out of stock. They have free shipping, but when I decide to do it, I don’t like to keep waiting for parts. Getting it in less than a week was going to cost more than I wanted to spend. But it was out of stock anyhow. I have heard good things about Summit Racing and the price was the same with the parts in stock. Nothing but good things to say. I ordered on Wednesday and it arrived on Friday. Same free shipping as CJ offered too.
That’s about the time things started heading south. Reading their directions, the kit supports either the original 67 spindles, or the ones I have. But, the ones I have need to be drilled and tapped where the 3 bolts for the dust shield are so they can fit the hardware included. I hadn’t seen this anywhere before, so I had some work to do figuring out what needed doing.
I didn’t have the right drill bit or tap, so I headed to the hardware store. At home, getting more use out of the drill I had to buy for the Arning drop was good. Tool pile is getting bigger. Then everything stopped when the tap broke in the spindle. Nothing I try will get this thing out. I’m screwed.
Now that I’m good and frustrated, I decided to just find a set of the original 67 spindles and be done with these. The 67 spindles has a square bolt pattern which all 4 are smooth, not threaded. This means the Wilwood caliper mount for 67 spindles is a nut and bolt attachment rather than bolt threaded into the spindle. Easy.
I found a set of spindles online and waited the week for them to arrive. While waiting, I took off the passenger side spindle. Hating the spring compression, I plan on leaving it like that until I can put it back on without uncompromising it. Nice idea, but no dice. No avoided work for me.
A little bit of work, and the new old spindles are on. My least favorite job (so far) and my spring is back, with the shock guard back in place. The shock tower cap is setting back in place, holding the shock, which is not yet connected.
Back to where I started, putting the new brake kit on. The caliper mount is surprisingly light. Mystery metals of the future. Unlike everything else associated with this project. As expected, they bolt right on. Following the directions, I got some Lock-Tite. Man, that stuff is spendy.
There is a left and a right, and it’s hard to tell from the included documentation pictures, but the bracket goes to the front of the wheel. A quick assembly clears it all up since that’s the only way it will actually function.
Unlike when I did my brakes on my ’05, there is no clean way to replace rotors. The bearings are inserted in the rotor assembly. That means they need to be greased before they go in. There are 2 bearings which need packing as part of the assembly. On my ’05 it was more like changing a tire. Just get the caliper out of the way and take it off. The lugs are on the car. In this case, the lugs are part of the caliper so the messy parts are exposed. Pro tip: get gloves. The kind you see people at the hospital use.
The caliper went on pretty easily. There are a few washers included that you can use as spacers to make sure its mounted in the center of the rotor. You just bolt it on the bracket on the back side of the spindle and drop in the brake pads.
I still need to redo all of the hard lines. For now, I have found the bracket the previous line was attached to for the demarcation of hard line to flexible hose. I blasted and painted it and am doing some research to figure out how to attach it. From there, it’s on to running lines.
To continue the brake system I expect to pick up a Wilwood master cylinder and rear disc just so it all goes together simpler. I still don’t have the rear end back, and something has to be mounted on it; might as well be discs.
I wish I could get this on the ground and test these out. It’s going to be a long time before I figure out if I did anything wrong here.
Update: A couple things. First, after doing research, I went with the stock rear end for brakes. Most of the work is on the front brakes, and these Wilwood brakes work really well. The rear disc is more than I need for this car and I am happy with the final setup with the original drums in the back.
Second, the spring compressor. By now I have used 3 different kinds. The one I used for this project is the worst. That is the one with the hooks that connect to the spring. Usually found at auto parts stores for rent. Those scare me. Another I have used is the kind that works like the shock, and attaches to the spring perch. Pretty good if your perch is easy to remove, aka not 50 years old. The last one was the OTC spring compressor. The most expensive but maybe one of the best. Do your research and figure out how much you want to spend on a spring compressor tool. Try to avoid the local auto parts store loaner for your own quality of life and health.