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'55 Clipper with stripped bleed valve - replace brake wheel cylinder?
#1
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onyerleft
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Two years ago I had Ed Strain rebuild the Easa-Matic brake master cylinder on my '55 Clipper Custom. Brakes worked great for a while, but when braking was getting soft I decided it was time to bleed them. The nut on my right rear wheel bleed valve is stripped, however. It will not budge, even at the mercy of vice-grips.

A mechanic who once restored Packards at the Petersen Museum told me he had success removing stripped bleed valves with a Grip-Tite socket:

https://www.northerntool.com/shop/tools/product_200810184_200810184

Alternatively, I could buy 4 replacement wheel cylinders from Kanter and replace those - however, I'm a beginner and want to avoid getting in over my head. Any suggestions appreciated.

Posted on: 9/26 16:02
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Re: '55 Clipper with stripped bleed valve - replace brake wheel cylinder?
#2
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R H
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You can get those cylinders anywhere.

Just replace them.

Posted on: 9/26 17:08
Riki
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Re: '55 Clipper with stripped bleed valve - replace brake wheel cylinder?
#3
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PackardDon
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Yes, just replace them. I got the ones in my 1954 Patrician from Napa but just about any parts shop has or can get them.

One caveat, though. Of those I bought, one has a metric bleed valve hex! Had I thought that might happen, I would have checked before leaving the store but they were already installed before I noticed.

Posted on: 9/26 19:07
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Re: '55 Clipper with stripped bleed valve - replace brake wheel cylinder?
#4
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HH56
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Agree it might be better to replace at least the one cylinder but remember on a 55 you will still need to have a fairly hefty or large wheel puller to get the rear drums off.

If you are not familiar with pullers and use, the preferred type is shown in the rear axle section of the 55-6 SM and there are also several threads on the forum describing and showing use as well as some available at rental places today.

Posted on: 9/26 19:58
Howard
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Re: '55 Clipper with stripped bleed valve - replace brake wheel cylinder?
#5
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PackardDon
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As Howard said having the proper tool is important and a good puller will last. I bought mine as a teenager in the ‘60s and never had difficulties getting the drums off my Packards, Henney-Packards or 1964 Imperials and the tool is still going strong. It will certainly outlast me!

Posted on: 9/26 20:11
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Re: '55 Clipper with stripped bleed valve - replace brake wheel cylinder?
#6
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kevinpackard
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If I can replace wheel cylinders, anyone can. But you could just get the cylinders and take the car to a brake place. Provide them the parts and they should be able to take care of things pretty easily.

-Kevin

Posted on: 9/26 22:28
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Re: '55 Clipper with stripped bleed valve - replace brake wheel cylinder?
#7
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R H
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And most auto parts loan tools..

But somewhere I have one..

Gerry Psw might have one.

Posted on: 9/26 22:40
Riki
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Re: '55 Clipper with stripped bleed valve - replace brake wheel cylinder?
#8
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JWL
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My experience is that the pullers the parts stores lend are not the right ones for pulling our rear brake drums. You can buy a good one from Amazon, or if lucky borrow one.

Posted on: 9/27 11:54
We move toward
And make happen
What occupies our mind... (W. Scherer)
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Re:
#9
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onyerleft
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Thanks Don, I found equivalent wheel cylinders (Dorman) and shoes for all four corners at PartsGeek.com.

Because I don't have a wheel puller I decided to take Kevin's advice and pay a mechanic to install them. Finding one of those who will work on a classic car wasn't so easy, though, even for something as simple as brake cylinders and shoes.

Finally came across a family-owned shop - the owner sounded like someone who would enjoy working on a vintage car (and might charge me a little less). Now if he can just stop my twin ultramatic from leaking...

Posted on: 9/27 23:33
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