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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
L20068 and I are disagreeing on something important and I'd like to know what's the general opinion: Do you feel its necessary to change the brake lines in these old cars?

I say no, for two reasons: (1) they're made of mild, rolled steel and are designed to withstand long-term vibration and shock, and (2) if you install a dual brake cylinder, chances are you may only lose front or rear braking but not both simultaneously. Therefore the effects of a busted brake line isn't as severe as a single cylinder application.

L20068 says change 'em, because you can never be too safe with older brake lines. Think of it as preventative maintenance!

SO, what's your opinion?

BTW, the results will become part of L20068's and 2ndnatr's plan for rebuilding TrojanMike67's car, so please chime in with your thoughts!
 

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Crush the brake pedel as hard as you can. Visably inspect the system. If no problem is found then leave well enough alone.

Whenever you work on a car you also create uncertanty.
 

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Change 'em all. They're cheap and simple. The set in the car lasted 35 years,
and a new set will last another 35 years. Sooner or later, if you keep the car long
enough, you're going to have to change the lines. Why not do it now and enjoy
the peace of mind good brakes give.

My 0.02...
 

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I agree with Dees67, they are cheap and easy to replace. I keep tabs on the entire braking system of all of my classic's, its just good insurance.
 

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1965 2+2 Vintage Burgundy A-code C4
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My answer will be, as with ALL wise men, a definitive "it depends". If the car has had fluid in the lines, it is likely that they will last for years to come. If they DO develop a leak, it will most likely not be a catastrophic failure that will plunge you off of a cliff. This is where a dual MC becomes a big safety plus! On the other hand, the cost is not enormous and the work is not too difficult, so if you have any doubts, replace them.
 

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i say change them! buy the preflared crap, and just bend them to fit the stock locations, and its only $25 at that point, more or less.

I've heard of them going out on at least 2 people, one of them rearended another car screwing up the fresh resto.
 

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I'm glad I'm not just a mad man who tries to spend other people's money, lol! =) Good idea to post this, Natr.
 

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If you do decide to keep the original lines, at least change all the flex lines. I have had 3 blow out lately on later model vehicles that are driven almost daily. Cheaper to fix than a life. When you bleed the new flex lines, take a careful look at the fluid that comes out. If it looks like any rust or water, change all the lines. There might be rust on the inside where you would not know until it is too late.
 

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Yes, replace them. its cheap, easy and new lines are not all bent and dented. Preventive maintenance, yes it is. I recommend getting stainless steel lines for a few dollars more.
 

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1966 coupe and 1970 sportsroof
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my complete set of '68 brake lines, wheel cylinders, MC are waiting in garage for installation. I just did not trust them and the first time you need them is too late and all your time and money are gone for couple hundred bucks. just MHO.
 

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I learned the hard way about the steel brake lines on a 25/30 year old car. I had a steel rear axle line burst when the brakes were applied a little harder than normal. Apparently, the line rusted from the inside out (moisture in the brake fluid). From the outside, the line looked brand new!
 

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67 coupe, 69 Sportsroof, 86 hatchback
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That's the problem with brake lines, they rot from the inside out and are not readily inspectable. I've seen lines that appeared OK and snapped off when bumped into by an elbow (mine). Rubber lines are sort of inspectable, cracks are an obvious indicator of age and wear.
My life depends on my brakes. I value my life enough not to rely on a 35 year old braking system.
 

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Lets see , first brake line broke while preganat wife is driving to doctors office for pre-natal checkup, just after Highway Patrol stops her for some other dumb inspection ,she pulls out from the side of the road at top of really big ole hill,then attempts to slow down....rear brake line burst..10 or 11 year old lines ,most likley mild steel as has been mentioned.
2nd time was rubber flex hose on front driver side just as i was pulling into parking space, big ole bang as i hit the cement curb, another 10 year old car
3rd time in the back yard as i was moving 10 year old pickup, this one sat in the snow all winter before i crawed under it to repair.
4th one doesnt count,cause it was on old 56 f100 pickup with original master and lines...what else would you expect from it
im of a mind that if its 10 year old stuff, you better be a watchin what your doin.
i cant even imagine you guys thinkin 35 year old brake stuff isnt gonna fail...SOONER than later
Replace it like everyone has mentioned, before you take a chance with your wife or friend in the car with you.
I almost lost a wife and son on a 10 year old rear brake line that looked good.
what ? a hundred bucks maybe 2 hundred if you get fancy?
my 2 cents from an old fart
 
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