Sunday, August 31, 2008

Mustang Beer Theory

We put the hypothesis to the test, and the results appear to support our idea: the amount of beer required to wrench on the Mustang is a constant, regardless of the actual number of mechanics present.

That being said, we had quite a productive day yesterday. Earlier the week, a laboring UPS man brought our 40 pound package of back ordered brake rotors and pads to our door. We were surprised to get them as early as we did. Not wanting to waste an opportunity, we made replacing the rotors and bleeding the brakes the main focus of our day.

Jacks were jacked, wheels were removed, and scary looking rotors viewed with incredulity. We actually drove around on this? No wonder we couldn't stop. New rotors were compared to old, and much "hell yes!" was exclaimed. Removing the bolts holding the calipers on proved too much for Ben's hex head, and it snapped itself in half. A quick trip to Sears later, we had a replacement which worked fantastically.

There was grease everywhere, and the new rotor was soon being put on. However, it had an odd wobble to it. No matter how many times we took out the bearing and put it back in, the rotor just didn't feel like it was seating right. "Compare it to the old one" I suggested. Aha. Perhaps that other bearing and oil seal are important. Really, we know what we're doing. They're only brakes, right?

Now to get the old oil seal off. The best tool is certainly a motorcycle tire iron. It was built to withstand brute force attacks. With enough leverage, anything will shoot off and hit the ceiling. The next tire had us all getting as far away from the rotor as possible while still being within reach to leverage the seal off. After a few halfhearted attempts, Jay just cut it off to get the wheel bearing out.

The rotor seated right up with all the appropriate mounting hardware in place. The new brakepads installed easily. Repeat with the other front brake. This time it went much faster, due to either more experience or more beer, or both.

Now it was time to bleed the brakes. We started with the farthest from the master cylinder. I have never seen more disgusting brake fluid in my life. The bleeding went easily though and soon we had both rear brakes completed. We used way more dot4 than I thought we would, and we'll still need more for the fronts. Definitely going to need to bleed it again though before the race.

We tested the brake pedal, and it no longer goes completely to the floor! It feels so good now. It was getting late by this point and we were out of brake fluid, so we decided to save the fronts for another day. The car is coming along nicely though, and when we drive it again we'll be able to both go fast AND stop. Looking forward to that.

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