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Old 07-02-2016, 06:55 AM   #1
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Workhorse P32 - 2001 - Bendix calipers and Master cylinder questions

Hello All,

My RV is a Challenger 329 - Workhorse 2001 - P32 chassis with a GM 7.4lt. Barely got it to stop in Vermont hills last weekend.

After reading a few post I still have some questions about the pedal bell crank, the MC and the bendix calipers. Seems like I just can't get this RV to brake like it should. Lats weekend I was riding my Challenger with a BRP Spyder RT on a trailer...not a big deal in terms of weight but after a few slopes the brakes were no longer usable. Pedal was at the floor and I nearly had about 5% of remaining brake. I took the dog house off - looked into the oil reservoir and found it full on each side. Of course it was barely touchable.

I am wondering if:

1- Is the ambiant temperature of the brake fluid reservoir affect the brake performance? There is a few inches between the manifold and the reservoir - and very low fresh air coming from the front...could it have an impact??

2- I checked the brakes liner front and rear and they are 75% good - how come I loose so much brake on small slopes??

3- I checked the bell crank and sincerely - I just can't figured out how to make a good lubrification of the moving parts and what to use? white grease? WD40? ....

Lastly - I sometime pull a TJ Jeep and I want this RV to ''brake'' when needed. I have a brake buddy in the jeep but its barely making it. What are you suggesting to solve this?? changing the MC for a bigger one? which model?

My brother has a 2002 workhorse with a 8.1 and he does have an effective brake system! works great and never had issues at all.

Thanks for your help!
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Old 07-02-2016, 08:44 AM   #2
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Have you ever changed the brake fluid? Brake fluid absorbs moisture and over time can accumulate enough to cause brake failure. Water gets hot, turns to steam and then...no brakes.
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Old 07-02-2016, 12:19 PM   #3
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Thanks Jeffery - No I never tried - will certainly do it if it can help. any other suggestion?
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Old 07-02-2016, 12:25 PM   #4
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I have the same chassis/motor as you and my brakes are good - after I replaced the calipers/rotors. My indications were just the opposite of yours - brakes were good cold but after driving awhile my brakes were too sensitive due to sticking calipers.
In troubleshooting I found that the brake fluid had never been changed. While changing it I noticed corrosion on both the back bleed screws. New fluid and brakes were sticking even more.
Then I noticed the brake pads were crystallized - due to being over heated at some time because of caliper sticking.
So I replaced calipers and rotors - all's well for a couple years now.

Workhorse brake issues include old brake fluid (water absorbed and expands when hot), flex (rubber) hose collapsing, brake lines run too close to exhaust pipe (add a heat sync), and the typical caliper/MC disc brake maintenance issues.

I would change brake fluid 1st while observing bleed screws for rust and old fluid for cleanliness (gook means something is disintegrating within the brake system).

Test drive and check the rotor temps (borrow an IR gun). Above 300F after a gentle stop is too hot = sticking calipers.

Go from there.

Some good info in this post that may help: http://www.irv2.com/forums/f22/02-p3...ot-173061.html
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Old 07-02-2016, 05:06 PM   #5
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Thank you - I will try as proposed and keep the group posted
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Old 07-03-2016, 08:24 AM   #6
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Remember the chassis was designed to tow the extra weight but it wasn't designed to stop it (Trailer Brakes). The pads and rotors could have glazed do to over heating.
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Old 07-03-2016, 08:41 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maroisp View Post
Thanks Jeffery - No I never tried - will certainly do it if it can help. any other suggestion?
If I understand your response you have not changed brake fluid and I would guess you probably don't know if it has ever been changed. It is something that should be done at least every two years in my estimation.

Take the opportunity to change out your brake bleeders at this time. See Oemy's Web Site - Speed Bleeders for the information you need on "Speed Bleeders".
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Old 07-03-2016, 08:53 AM   #8
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Another issue is that the brakes are "Sliding caliper" design. meaning the entire caliper must move so the pads push on both sides of the brake disc (rotor). If the caliper sliders are not lubricated, caliper movement could be restricted (or not moving at all) which can significantly reduce braking force. Sliding caliper brakes are a crappy cost reduced design, but are used in lots of automotive applications.
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