Lancia Motor Club

Model Technical and Interest => Flaminia => Topic started by: pchflyer on 01 September, 2016, 06:47:00 PM



Title: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: pchflyer on 01 September, 2016, 06:47:00 PM
New owner of a Flaminia Touring and new to the forums. My car is in overall very good condition, but it has the well-known issue of vacuum brakes locking after a firm application. Receipts from the previous owner indicate the original brake system, including the servo, had been serviced about 10 years ago with unknown mileage since. I can drive it if I let the pressure slowly bleed off or just force the car to move from a stop until the system releases. I read that it could be a restriction in the master cylinder or the servo unit. Is there one component that is more likely to be at fault than the other? Any on-road fixes for driveability before I have the whole thing taken apart again?



Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: Charles Frodsham on 01 September, 2016, 09:08:42 PM
Hi and congratulations on buying your new Flaminia. I am sure there are a lot of us that would like to see some pictures here!

There is a lot of experience on this forum on Flaminia brakes, so hopefully you should get some useful advice.

In my own limited experience ( I have a Flaminia PF coupe), I would suggest it may be a servo problem. However, all the brake components must be in good condition for the system to work properly, so you may need to revise the master cylinder and wheel cylinders.

I have been plagued by brake problems over the last few years, and have only now achieved trouble free operation. I used a well known UK specialist to rebuild master cylinder and servo, but continued to get problems. The servos are particularly prone to problems. In the end I purchased a ' new' servo from LanciaClassic in the Netherlands. These have corrosion free internals built around an original unit, and are imported from the USA. It was quite expensive, but I must say it does actually work...and nicely...which is unusual for Flaminia servos!!

I also used BG developments, who manufacture Dunlop aluminium wheel cylinder units, that do not corrode and subsequently damage the internal seals.

There is a Dunlop brake manual which is excellent if you can get a copy......maybe the club has a copy?

I hope this may be of some help

Charles


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: Charles Frodsham on 01 September, 2016, 09:11:27 PM
Hello again

Just a thought, if you disconnect the vacuum hose from the servo does the problem disappear?

Be careful thoughts the brakes will be very weak...just for diagnosis.

Charles


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: Dave Gee on 01 September, 2016, 09:28:46 PM
Charles is right. I would go for the servo and a good test is to remove the vacuum pipe to see if the brake releases. If you look on the Italian ebay site a company there is selling reconditioned servos for Fulvia, Flavia and Flaminia for around 400 euros.

On my Flavia I have fitted a new dual in-line servo which is meant for a kit car but looks period.  This was developed by the Flavia Consortium. Several friends have also fitted this servo successfully to their Flaminias. For them, the only modification needed was to fit a T piece to the brake line to take the pressure switch for the brake lights.

While at Silverstone this year, I was talking to a company which has developed a 4-pot brake calliper for the front brakes on a Flaminia. The cost is around £500 for a pair of callipers and they bolt on without any modification. This is something that I am going to look into over the winter, for my Flaminia.

Dave Gee


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: mgmalatt on 01 September, 2016, 10:07:45 PM
Hi, there are three likely reasons for this.
It could be:
- The handbrake stuck - It works on the rear discs, and you'll need to get under the car to check it
- A sticky or frozen caliper piston, or
- The master cylinder holding pressure.

First thing I would do is check whether the brake pedal is somehow holding on and maintaining pressure - just pull the pedal upward and see if that fixes it
Failing that, get the car on some axle stands and try to rotate each wheel. Make sure the handbrake is off, and never work on a car that's only supported by a jack.
If one or both rears are stuck, it might be the park brake. Get under and see if the mechanism is jammed.
If it's not that, and only one wheel is stuck, it's a caliper, and you might get away with just a caliper rebuild. If you're doing one though, you may as well do all four.
If more than one wheel is stuck, it's probably the master cylinder or the servo.
Crack the bleed screws on the stuck calipers. If fluid comes out fast, there is residual pressure in the system. In this case, call a Lancia expert! The booster and master system is complex and needs someone who knows them well. At least if you've gone through the steps above, you've got some idea what you're in for.
Good luck and I hope we see her on the road soon.
Matt


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: fay66 on 01 September, 2016, 11:49:41 PM
Hi and congratulations on buying your new Flaminia. I am sure there are a lot of us that would like to see some pictures here!

There is a lot of experience on this forum on Flaminia brakes, so hopefully you should get some useful advice.

In my own limited experience ( I have a Flaminia PF coupe), I would suggest it may be a servo problem. However, all the brake components must be in good condition for the system to work properly, so you may need to revise the master cylinder and wheel cylinders.

I have been plagued by brake problems over the last few years, and have only now achieved trouble free operation. I used a well known UK specialist to rebuild master cylinder and servo, but continued to get problems. The servos are particularly prone to problems. In the end I purchased a ' new' servo from LanciaClassic in the Netherlands. These have corrosion free internals built around an original unit, and are imported from the USA. It was quite expensive, but I must say it does actually work...and nicely...which is unusual for Flaminia servos!!

I also used BG developments, who manufacture Dunlop aluminium wheel cylinder units, that do not corrode and subsequently damage the internal seals.

There is a Dunlop brake manual which is excellent if you can get a copy......maybe the club has a copy?

I hope this may be of some help

Charles

If Pchflyer would care to pm me his address I'll burn a copy of the Dunlop/Girling brake manual.

Brian
8227 8)


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: pchflyer on 01 September, 2016, 11:53:51 PM
Thanks all for the advice. I have the car temporarily at another location, so it will be some weeks before I can troubleshoot again. The problem cropped up all of a sudden after I had already put some 1300 relatively trouble-free miles on it. It appears more that the system is not releasing pressure, rather than just (a) crusty brakes. Either the master cylinder is not releasing, or the servo is not releasing. If it is the servo, I'd like to explore the retrofit of a new dual circuit servo, especially if it's reversible, should I want to reinstall the original equipment. If anyone has a diagram of the installation that would help.



Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: Jay on 02 September, 2016, 10:57:39 AM
Nice to see another contributor,

My car developed this problem, about 200miles after purchasing I got the impression that this was a known fault on the car but a quick Servo strip down gave it a bit more life. But the brakes started to bind quite a lot and I started to fall out of love with the car, so a quick phone call to Norfolk suggested that next time they seized just loosen the pipes on the servo to each of the circuits to free the brakes and ascertain which ones were binding.  It turn out the backs were sticking more than the fronts, and as the all the pistons had been previously lined 15 years prior, I sent the servo to them for a complete rebuild. Since then the brakes have been really strong and absolutely 100%, although you do need to drive these car regularly.

I believe that the back brakes binding were part of the cause for my stub axle to sheer a couple of years ago, another thread on this forum. As when I check the clutch it wasnít in great condition with so much burning and cracking, where I think someone (before me) had just tried to fight the brakes. Luckily I had an old spare, and if the brakes were jammed all this torque would have been taken up through these shafts.


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: pchflyer on 02 September, 2016, 02:54:13 PM
Thanks for the warning about stressing the clutch and stub axels. Fighting locked brakes with the drivetrain is not fun, but I had to do something with a line of cars behind me honking their horns. I haven't driven the car since the problem cropped up. I'm wondering how complicated a removal and reinstallation of the servo is? Is it fully described in the Dunlop manual? I've done many conventional brake jobs, but I have very limited space to work on this one and if it's a two-person job or requires special tools I need to make other arrangements.


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: Jay on 02 September, 2016, 03:49:11 PM
I also did it (fight the brakes) once and you can really feel the heat generated by those inboard rear discs.  

Looking back I sent the master cylinder, the servo and reservoirs, although they used all 3 components on their jig, they only refurbished the servo, as the other parts were fine. Removing the servo is a very straightforward 1 person job, as its high in engine compartment, with easy access to the 5 pipes and 4 bolts holding it on. 

The master cylinder is much dirtier and painful job, as itís under the car, but still 1 person.  


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: frankxhv773t on 02 September, 2016, 04:41:38 PM
If the master cylinder is underneath the car then what is that sticking out of the front of the servo? I am confused and in need of educating.


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: Jay on 02 September, 2016, 04:53:35 PM
Itís a remote servo, the thing at the end is just a nut on the end of the remote master (booster) cylinder. Here's a better picture of the whole assembly.

It's very easy to get to, unlike the one on the Fulvia Sport S1 (RHD), which is well hidden in front of left hand wheel bedded deep in the arch and behind the light assembly.   


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: pchflyer on 02 September, 2016, 05:23:19 PM
I'm thinking of the bleeding process once it's all back together. Not being familiar with this setup yet, are there two separate resevoirs/ circuits, or is it one supply from the brake pedal on? I have a Flaminia Berlina shop manual-does that use the same setup?


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: Jay on 02 September, 2016, 06:05:44 PM
In theory itís very easy, single reservoir which feeds all circuits and this is the nice part, it has its own pressure bleeding pump built in to the reservoir, absolutely brilliant. So connect all the pipes, pour in the fluid, pump up the pressure a couple of times, then go to each corner and slacken until all the bubbles are gone, remembering to top up and keep up the pressure. So a 1 person job with no pressing/depressing the brake pedal, whilst arsing rounding with the bleed nipple.

BUT thatís the theory, in reality the rear calipers are near impossible to get to, especially the nipples, there is a hatch in the boot, but that doesnít help much. So if you have big hands, good luck, I think Charles made a stubby bent spanner to help.   

I think all Flaminias have the same arrangement but obviously some are disc whilst others are drum. 


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: frankxhv773t on 02 September, 2016, 09:40:28 PM
Jay, I actually dismantled a wreck of a Berlina and it never occurred to me that the actual master cylinder was somewhere else! I think it's back to school on Flaminia brakes for me.


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: fay66 on 03 September, 2016, 12:01:18 AM
Nice to see another contributor,

My car developed this problem, about 200miles after purchasing I got the impression that this was a known fault on the car but a quick Servo strip down gave it a bit more life. But the brakes started to bind quite a lot and I started to fall out of love with the car, so a quick phone call to Norfolk suggested that next time they seized just loosen the pipes on the servo to each of the circuits to free the brakes and ascertain which ones were binding.  It turn out the backs were sticking more than the fronts, and as the all the pistons had been previously lined 15 years prior, I sent the servo to them for a complete rebuild. Since then the brakes have been really strong and absolutely 100%, although you do need to drive these car regularly.

I believe that the back brakes binding were part of the cause for my stub axle to sheer a couple of years ago, another thread on this forum. As when I check the clutch it wasnít in great condition with so much burning and cracking, where I think someone (before me) had just tried to fight the brakes. Luckily I had an old spare, and if the brakes were jammed all this torque would have been taken up through these shafts.


Here you go
file:///C:/Users/Owner/Downloads/FFF_Dunlop_Duplex_S2_Eng.pdf.

Brian
8227 8)


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: Charles on 03 September, 2016, 02:05:49 PM
I keep my Flaminia brake servo (as freshly serviced by Omicron) on a shelf in my garage!  For the last three years I have been driving around with one of these - http://www.s-v-c.co.uk/product/dual-remote-servo/ - which was easy to fit and works a treat with no hint of problems.  I had to make a couple of simple brackets which mount to the original mounting cotton reels plus one small bracket fixed to the inner wing.  Also a hydraulic switch for the brake lights was required. The whole thing is easily reversible (i.e. put back to original) with about an hour's work but I like the reassurance of knowing that when I hit the pedal, the car will stop.


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: Charles Frodsham on 03 September, 2016, 05:53:34 PM
Lots of good information guys.

The servo obviously causes a lot of issues as can be seen from the replies.

If you want to keep the car standard, with standard/original pipe work, and have superb brakes, year in and year out, without having to do periodic rebuilds, to my mind the ClassicLancia item cannot be beaten, as it fundamentally removes the corrosion issue and also the internal component wear that components of this age will undoubtedly have. This isn't an advert, just the result of a lot of time and money! I wish I had just done it sooner.


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: pchflyer on 04 September, 2016, 04:56:14 AM
Lots of good information guys.

The servo obviously causes a lot of issues as can be seen from the replies.

If you want to keep the car standard, with standard/original pipe work, and have superb brakes, year in and year out, without having to do periodic rebuilds, to my mind the ClassicLancia item cannot be beaten, as it fundamentally removes the corrosion issue and also the internal component wear that components of this age will undoubtedly have. This isn't an advert, just the result of a lot of time and money! I wish I had just done it sooner.
Can someone explain again the functional differences between the ClassicLancia-type servo and the original unit? I do see the original has a separate fitting for the brake light sensor, and what else? Thanks for the great info.


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: Brian Long on 04 September, 2016, 11:42:29 AM
Have you checked your hoses to make sure they haven't swelled internally. The booster can force fluid into the calipers but the pressure can't relieve because it is trapped in the caliper(s).


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: Charles Frodsham on 04 September, 2016, 07:58:53 PM
Good point Brian about the flexible pipes.

The 'Classic Lancia' servo is basically an original servo with re-engineered internals.....stainless steel material for pin and both piston housings. Although sold as 'new' you have to provide a donor servo so that production can continue. So all fittings, sensors, operation exactly as the original. As far as I can see the only problem is the price...but you should only ever have to buy one.


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: AandSRuggeri on 05 September, 2016, 11:23:48 PM
Hi there, In my opinion, the Flaminia as delivered from the factory has pluperfect brakes, way better than anything of the period that I've driven and dare I say it, much better than a lot of considerably more modern cars as well. True, a wobbly servo will provide no end of entertainment - I remember that my GT had a particular wheeze for pulling violently to the left on the first couple of applications and would aferwards brake in a dead straight line from 110+ mph without a murmer. Once these systems are up and running as per factory spec they are gold standard and have no need for modification - a sentiment that funnily enough I find true for the rest of the car as well...
Regards,
Stef


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: pchflyer on 16 September, 2016, 04:38:37 PM
I keep my Flaminia brake servo (as freshly serviced by Omicron) on a shelf in my garage!  For the last three years I have been driving around with one of these - http://www.s-v-c.co.uk/product/dual-remote-servo/ - which was easy to fit and works a treat with no hint of problems.  I had to make a couple of simple brackets which mount to the original mounting cotton reels plus one small bracket fixed to the inner wing.  Also a hydraulic switch for the brake lights was required. The whole thing is easily reversible (i.e. put back to original) with about an hour's work but I like the reassurance of knowing that when I hit the pedal, the car will stop.
While attempting to troubleshoot problem #1, stuck brakes, the car developed problem #2, a strange short at the battery, which could have been disasterous, but luckily just killed the battery and nothing else. For expediency's sake, I'm leaning toward ordering a backup servo as recommended by Charles while the original servo is sent away, if needed. I see in your pic the air valve is missing, and some lines don't appear to be connected. Is this because the photo was taken mid-installation, or did you modify it in some way?


Title: Re: Flamina Touring Brake Lock Issue
Post by: pchflyer on 16 September, 2016, 04:51:08 PM
I found this excellent description of remote servo operation, complete with drawings and possible clues to servo failures: http://www.mgb-stuff.org.uk/servo.htm (http://www.mgb-stuff.org.uk/servo.htm)