HI new to the forum, just become the proud owner of 1963 P5 Mk11 with 57000 miles genuine miles, car has a fully documented history including every mile driven in original ownership which was 40+ years! MOT's corroborate the mileage.
Sadly after a lovely 50 mile jaunt through the North Lincs countryside a problem occurred, I pulled up at some traffic lights and was concerned to see smoke from the front of the car, I pulled over opened the bonnet and saw no smoke. Head scratching I noticed the brake fluid reservoir had overflowed
Thus then looked in the front wheel arches and saw smoke omitting from there, both front road wheels very hot to the touch, so hot in fact that it then proceeded to eject all its wheel bearing grease through the small central hole in the road wheel. Wheel trims full of grease and hot! Frying pans!
Fluid reservoir overflowed, very spongy brakes once cooled down, had it recovered due to safety concerns and a 150 mile trip home. Discs blued, calipers / hoses look good with what look like newish pads
Any idea what might cause this, as it was both sides simultaneously I feel is unlikely to be a caliper or hose, possible master cylinder or pipe issue. I believe there is a servo but can'd find it! Wrong pads?
Can you use DOT4 in these cars? Has anyone else had a similar issue?
Any help advice appreciated, very pleased to have bought such a lovely car but a little disappointed with what will hopefully be a smallish issue to resolve
Congratulations on your 'new' acquisition Jim. Like all classics of a certain age expect some misbehave if they're not given regular TLC. Keep in mind, although your Rover is low mileage the components are old and some components are perishable. If the car isn't used regularly then things will occur that will need rectification.
The problem of the front brakes locking on could be due to a number of factors but there's a high probability due to the age of specific brake components....that the front brake hoses have collapsed internally. The hoses degrade inside and act like one way valves due to degradation. Fluid will pass through due to the extreme pressure induced by the master cyl and or power booster but it won't return.
If the hoses are original...this would most likely contribute to the issue.
I had exactly this problem with a Volvo 360! Apparently when the brake fluid gets hot it recirculates back to the master cylinder and the reservoir. If there is fault with the master cylinder or the servo, the piston in the master cylinder does not return fully between braking, thus blocking the path of the hot brake fluid -> boiling fluid and burning brake pads. It might have helped to pull the brake pedal back between braking with your foot. That way you can feel if it sticking. Not sure if the P5 system is the same, still if your car really has original 1963 brake parts (same age as me) I would err on the side of servicing all the components.
Welcome to the club and the forum. Your car sounds like a really nice one, but with problems due to lack of use. Hopefully you can save the wheel bearings by re-packing them with grease - see workshop manual !
As far as the brakes are concerned, the rubbers deteriorate with age and being attacked by brake fluid, rather than use. If there are no receipts for work on them I would suggest that you replace all the rubbers and hoses. I have found with my car that the rubbers in the rear wheel cylinders will start to stick after about 7 years, so every 7 years I replace all the rubbers, including the servo. It is a job that I enjoy doing and quite straight forward
If both front brakes were binding, then a common factor is likely the culprit rather than single factors like flexible brake hoses. Common factors are essentially a non-recuperating MC and a sticking / malfunctioning servo.
If your car has the original Girling Mk2b servo, there is a high chance that it is the source of your problems. However, I strongly recommend rebuilding the entire braking system from reservoir and MC to the slave cylinders / brake pistons, replacing the Girling with a Lockheed, replacing all the solid brake pipes (even if they do not look corroded, they are likely to be brittle and in danger of cracking), without question all the flexible brake hoses.
There are places that will rebuild the servo and reline it with SS, and this might be your option if you want to keep the car original rather than safe.
It is going to cost you a couple of grand, but then brake or wheel bearing failure might cost you a lot more. IMHO, this is not a "if its not broke then don't fix it" this is more like "do you feel lucky today" each time you drive.
BTW I also have a 1963 MkII coupe. What a car! Mine however has 180,000 miles on it.
Post by Phil Nottingham on Sept 24, 2019 8:28:26 GMT
Given both fronts locked and possibly the rears (?) I would say its a servo or a master cylinder issue through lack of use. As others said the rubbers including the flexis deterorate even through just standing so ALL ought to be replaced.
If they are OK and the rears are not locking (assuming the cylinders have not both seized) it could well be rust on the the rim of the caliper bores which expands when the disk/caliper warms up through use and grips the pistons.
Whatever, the system is simple and easy to repair and maintain to give good reliablity and clearly a full overall is required for peace of mind
Phil - 1964 P5-Coupe PMB***B & P5B-saloon LHO***L & other classic Rovers & Land-Rovers
Thanks to all for the excellent responses, I also have a 1971 Triumph Herald Convertible so am used to the nuisances of classic motoring! Front only it seemed rears unaffected. The car did not want to roll at first but after cooling off it would again
I've been advised by JR Wadhams its probably the servo which it would appear is a known issue and we plan to replace the hoses and possibly the master cylinder as well as a precaution. The calipers look to be in good condition but will tackle those if needed. I am looking at buying the Lockheed servo they do this week and get going, where is the servo on the car as I cannot see it as it would help to know!
I've always wanted a P5 and am very pleased to be part of the family! A lovely car with good patina, a few bits and pieces but very presentable
I would plan to join some of the events next year, the car is not concours but I want it to be used as intended. I'll keep you posted as to progress on this and thank you all for taking time to respond
The registration is 269 LPX some of you might have seen it at shows under previous owners, its Dove Grey with a maroon roof. It has an interesting history
I can post a picture if you can tell me how to get round the size limit!
I have receipts for a lot of work, in fact all work going back to 1963 quite literally!
Two log books in the car list every mile driven destination etc from new well into the 1990's including petrol stops! Subsequent owners have added to it with mainly repairs and servicing detail and we plan to continue this of course. It's very nice to see and something very valuable tostay with the car for hopefully its continued long life. It is what attracted us to it as we really wanted a 3.5 but none available came close to having all this history which makes the car to us.
Rear brakes were done in recent times but fronts not documented, I plan to have the calipers off and see whether they are sticky and the pads look newish but will probably replace them now they've been cooked. I have old pads in the boot so they have been changed at some point
Thanks again to all, if anyone knows the car be interested in any info you may have
Jim the original power brake unit is best rebuilt by a reputable brake business that will provide a guarantee with the rebuilt item. Other wise it can be a nightmare given its location and multiple excursions there to sort constant issues!
PS. The original symptoms outlined don't explain why the rear wheels also didn't lock-up. Given that it's a single circuit system with pressure applied via the booster front and rear! (If the power brake unit failed to release pressure after application then why weren't the rear brakes also locked up?)
I agree, I'm presuming its a clearance issue, ie pads on discs vs shoes on drums. Pads look newish and so do discs, shoes not viewed and were changed 5-6 years ago very minimal mileage since but no binding noted
The roadwheels at the front were red hot as were the hub caps, the rears were stone cold As I said this boiled the hub grease at the front particularly on the drivers side so a lot of heat build up there but both wheels were hot to the touch
Post by Phil Nottingham on Sept 25, 2019 17:30:22 GMT
Both flexis collapsed (not usual but poss) or binding caliper pistons. Its just not worth the effort rebuilding the old complicated Girling servo either. It will not last. The manifold studs and location dowels can sieze in the alloy manifold. Give it a good soaking in Plusgas for a week or (not WD40). Rocking it will shift it eventually.
Look at the calipers/hoses first being the easiest but utimately in the near future a new Lockheed servo is the most reliable option and ensure the car is used and not left standin!
Phil - 1964 P5-Coupe PMB***B & P5B-saloon LHO***L & other classic Rovers & Land-Rovers
Phil & Jim...I'm currently undertaking a similar brake rebuild on my Z Magnette coupe project car. Both front brake hoses although perfect externally have constricted to the point where both front wheels are locking but not yet locked-up. Rather than replace the faulty hoses with new ones, I decided to have a couple of teflon linered stainless steel braided hoses made up. It cost about $20 AUD extra per hose over the cost of rubber hoses. Similarly my MK3 P5 coupe has all braided hoses fitted.
Below is a picture of a braided hose for my P5 Rover beside an original rubber hose. The braided hoses are legal and incorporate an outer clear plastic protective sheath.
I've ordered new flexis and plan to look at calipers / pistons / seals first as part of this and change the brake fluid as it looks rather nasty, I will repack the wheel bearings as well after it boiled out. Any recommendations on grease type? I want to use DOT 4 is this ok?
The servo seems to be working again now when tested with the engine running so I am working from the end of the process backwards, if the calipers are proved to be good and the flexis and fluid are new and we still have an issue then we will look to replace the master cylinder and servo as a matter of course. Simple things first
Well Jim I don't believe you have to throw the baby out with the bath water! I'm currently doing a brake resto on one of my other classics an MG Magnette. A long period of storage and lack of use has caused several issues that need remediating.
Your issue with the locking brakes. All 4 wheels should have locked on a single circuit system if the 'compensating' port within the master cyl was either blocked or covered when the brake pedal was released. If the port was blocked due to maladjustment of the pedal pushrod, swollen cup seals or even dirt/debris within the cyl, pressure will build up increasingly with every application of the brake pedal.
If it were mine I'd check individual components one at a time, then after careful investigation remove each one from the list of probable causes. There may be the no need to rebuild the Queen Mary.
If the brake fluid that came out of the system was looking filthy, then all the components of the braking system will be degraded to some extent, and you will save yourself work and danger in the long run by renovating them now.
If the booster is working again, that is good news, but if you do not take it apart and clean out all the crud, it will not work for very long as the crud will score the bores and degrade the rubber seals. And if you are taking it apart, it makes sense to replace the diaphragm and seals while you have it apart.
The same goes for the brake calipers. There is likely to be rusty sediment in the chambers behind each piston, just waiting to score the bores and scuff up the seals. When I took mine apart, there was about a half teaspoonful in each, and that was after flushing the brake fluid first.
You are replacing the rubber hoses for sure. So a simple test: when you unlink each from the section of solid brake pipe, just test the solid pipe for flexibility. If it is in good condition, you will easily be able to reshape it, and refitting the flexible pipe is easy. If however the solid pipe is stiff, then it has work hardened and will be prone to failure.
Me? I am risk averse (despite being an ex-motorcyclist, ex-London) and do not wish to ever be heading towards a tree and have no brakes. That has happened to me twice in childhood, with someone else driving.
Hey David...all I am trying to do is diagnose the issue behind the locked up brakes. If interested look up the function of compensating ports in brake master cyls. I'm not advocating the preservation of faulty brake systems.
Based on Jim's comments about the car's overall condition it seems to have been very well cared for and preserved. I have nothing against a full brake rebuild if required...but these things can be done methodically.
PS. I've had a motorcycle licence since I was 19 and currently own a 1968 Vespa Sprint, 1942 WLA Harley Davidson, 2004 VRod Harley, a 1997 Yamaha Virago 250 and a hybrid Harley motor I built combining a side valve crankcase and overhead sportster top end to go into a custom built frame. I fitted disc brakes (front & rear) to my 42 WLA because the original drums wouldn't stop the bike fast enough in modern traffic.