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Brake Pipe Replacement

Modification Details

It's a fairly common failure or advisory on an MOT.

Normally it's just the tester panicking and the corrosion can be sanded off and the pipes painted.
However, sometimes the pipes are just too far gone and the corrosion causes a hole.

You have 2 options. 

Expensive but easy = go to smart and buy the pre-formed pipes and fit them.
Cheap but extra work = make your own brake pipes.

Considering the pre-formed pipes are expensive and making your own is 1/3rd of the price, let's make them.

Remove The Old Pipe

Obviously we need the old one off, not just to make room though. We need it for a template.

Unbolt it from each end. I think you are old enough to work out what size spanners you need.

The pipes are clipped to the chassis along the route. Unclip the pipes.

On the rear, the pipes connect to hoses to allow for the suspension movement.

You just have to pull the clip out...

...then you can throw a spanner on each side and disconnect the 2.

You now have your template to copy.

Pre-formed pipes are expensive but a coil of unformed brake pipe is fairly cheap. This kit cost £15 on eBay.

It's 3/16" (4.75mm) copper nickel, also known as kunifer, cunifer or cupronickel.
It doesn't work harden like normal copper pipes but it is slightly harder to form.
Most importantly though, it's far more resistant to corrosion.

In the kit I bought, I got the 10mm male connections...

...and the 10mm female connections

The ends of the pipes are formed into a shape called a DIN flare. We need to make this flare on our pipes.

If you go on eBay and search for a brake pipe flaring tool, you'll probably see this kit below.
This is for creating an SAE flare. This is NOT the tool you want.

This is what the correct tool looks like. Again, an eBay purchase.

You'll also need a pipe cutter. You tighten it up, spin it round. Repeat until the pipe is cut.

Push the correct end onto the pipe. Forget this part and you are screwed.

Loosen the tool clamping bolts and push the pipe into the back.

Screw the flat end of the setting bolt into the tool.

This will push the pipe back to the perfect position. With the pipe being pushed in as far as it'll go,
tighten the 2 side clamping bolts up tight so that it grips the brake pipe.

Remove the setting bolt...

...turn the setting bolt around to the shaping side of the tool. Add some grease to the tool...

...and spin it in.

Grab a spanner and turn the shaping tool all the way in until it bottoms out.

Remove the shaping tool, remove the side clamp bolts, disassemble the tool and remove the shaped brake pipe.

A perfect DIN flare just like the original pipe.

Slide the connection up to the DIN flare to make sure it sits nicely.

Now you need to form the new pipe to match the old one.
I recommend straightening the coil out as best as you can and cutting off a section.

You can bend it by hand or you can use a brake pipe bending tool.

Copy the original pipe as best as you can. It won't be perfect but you can adjust it as you fit it.

Fit the new pipe, clip it in place and fettle the shape to suit.

It's a bit of a mess but it works perfectly. I bled the brakes and it held pressure with no leaks.

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