Rusted Out 1970 850 Spider Fix-Up

Discussion in 'Rear-Engine Fiats' started by Daniel Gibson, Apr 30, 2019.

  1. Daniel Gibson

    Daniel Gibson True Classic

    Location:
    Texas
    I had a little more time after dinner tonight, so I thought I would bolt back down the parking brake plate. Nothing is ever simple. I forgot that the parking brake release was stuck, so that took a while to work it loose. As another example of how everything is broken on this car, here is the parking brake light switch. Frozen solid. I tried everything to work it loose, but no dice. Just need to go get a push button switch that it push off.

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    Getting there!

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    Finally, I pulled on my choke cable tonight, and this happened. I kinda knew I needed one, but did not expect this. Go get a universal one for a lawn mower tomorrow.
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    khnitz likes this.
  2. khnitz

    khnitz Daily Driver

    On the parking brake switch, what about soaking it in Coca Cola or EvapoRust ? It would have to sit for some days, but maybe?
     
    Daniel Gibson likes this.
  3. Daniel Gibson

    Daniel Gibson True Classic

    Location:
    Texas
    It might, but I have my doubts. I lightly tapped on it with a hammer for some minutes, and no go. Also, I am sure there is/was a spring in there, and it must be destroyed after all this rain got on it. Fortunately, a new switch should be cheap and easy.
     
    khnitz likes this.
  4. Daniel Gibson

    Daniel Gibson True Classic

    Location:
    Texas
    Ok, so I got fed up with this stupid switch and drilled it out. Busted spring and rust. So, let us fix it! Here is what I started with.
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    And here is where I ended up. Cut down the q-tip to length, and jb welded the q tip to the inside of the old plastic cap. I already have a pile of springs lying around. Then cut it again and jb welded the connection end back on. It works!
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    Yes, I know I could have bought a switch, but that is not the point. Fix it up cheap is the point!
     
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  5. Daniel Gibson

    Daniel Gibson True Classic

    Location:
    Texas
    Time to fix the choke! Nobody nearby had a complete cable, so I stopped by the VW store and bought a inside cable that was long enough. In hindsight, I should have just bought some wire. Oh well!

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    Getting the old stuff out was pretty easy. Just flex the cable back and forth to bust up any rust. New one slipped right in! So far so good!
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    And here is the knob in place. I was able to re-use the old one, but I had to drill a new hole higher up the shaft due to rust.
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    And all installed and working! Took a while to get the cable rerouted.
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    While I was under there, I filled the transaxle and looked at the brakes. How are you supposed to adjust these?
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  6. gene cooley

    gene cooley Autocrosser

    Location:
    Henrico, Va
    Self adjusting.
     
    khnitz likes this.
  7. Daniel Gibson

    Daniel Gibson True Classic

    Location:
    Texas
    Cool! Thanks. But how did they do it without all the star wheels and the like? Just an assumption that the brake pedal would eventually cause the shoes to hit the drums?
     
  8. gene cooley

    gene cooley Autocrosser

    Location:
    Henrico, Va
    The shoes will move on the aluminum "cups" (the ones with the large spring and circlip that sit on the posts in the backing plate.)
    When you install the shoes you can push both of them toward the hub to let the drums go on. After that applying the brake will push the shoes out until they make contact with the drums. The shoes will slide on the spring loaded cup assemblies and a slight "spring back" will set the clearance.
    Edit: the long springs top and bottom pull the shoes back against the cups when the brake is released. That provides the pull back from the drums. Clear as mud?
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2019
  9. JimD

    JimD Waiting for Godot... Moderator

    Location:
    Missouri, USA
    I am in San Antonio right now, haven't seen a lime green 850 anywhere. :cool:Exactly how big is Texas? :p:rolleyes:
     
  10. Daniel Gibson

    Daniel Gibson True Classic

    Location:
    Texas
    It is. On other European cars I have owned, like the amphicar, those shafts rotate and move the brakes closer or further from the drums. Based on this design, I bet these were originally designed for that. After reading the manual again, it appears that the parking brake cable is tightened to apply the parking brake tighter/harder. This means that the parking brake cable is being used to bring the shoes closer to the drums, in essence adjusting the brakes. Time to go tighten the cable!

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  11. Daniel Gibson

    Daniel Gibson True Classic

    Location:
    Texas
    Really really big. Where are you from?
     
  12. JimD

    JimD Waiting for Godot... Moderator

    Location:
    Missouri, USA
    St Louis, Mo basically. I was teasing on the size of TX. My grandparents lived in Kerrville during my youth and I spent time there during summers swimming and fishing in the Guadalupe. Here for a wedding this weekend. I love TX.:)
     
  13. Daniel Gibson

    Daniel Gibson True Classic

    Location:
    Texas
    I have lived all over the country (from MA originally), but TX suits me just fine!
     
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  14. gene cooley

    gene cooley Autocrosser

    Location:
    Henrico, Va
    The adjustment is made when the cups relocate themselves on the brake shoes.
    Movement in and out of the shoes is controlled by the difference in diameter of the post and the cup.
    I could be wrong (again) but the brakes should work and adjust without the handbrake. Are you saying that the handbrake is used for the initial setting of the shoes or as permanent adjustment?
     
    NM850 likes this.
  15. Daniel Gibson

    Daniel Gibson True Classic

    Location:
    Texas
    There has to be a method to keep the shoes close to the drum, for both braking and the handbrake. Rule of thumb is pull up on the handbrake three clicks. The rear wheels should either be locked or close to it. On this car, you pull the shoes to the drum per the manual above. When the parking brake is released, I believe that there will still be some tension in the parking brake cables, pulling the shoes closer to the drum, but not engaging. Of course, this is just me talking. Either way, my parking brake is adjusted!
     
  16. gene cooley

    gene cooley Autocrosser

    Location:
    Henrico, Va
    If your brakes are adjusted correctly now and then you removed all of the handbrake parts from inside the drum your brakes will still be in adjustment and will keep on adjusting as the shoes wear.
     
  17. Daniel Gibson

    Daniel Gibson True Classic

    Location:
    Texas
    Odds and ends tonight!

    Repaired rear view mirror back on.
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    Steering wheel column cover put back on.
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    New fuel pump on!
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    I really need to get the interior done. But I am not sure a about the wiring harness. On a car with the factory floor board, where does the harness go on front to back?
     
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  18. NM850

    NM850 True Classic

    Location:
    Albuquerque NM
    Down the left side, from the fuse block straight down and then along outer sill
     
  19. Daniel Gibson

    Daniel Gibson True Classic

    Location:
    Texas
    Thanks. Hmmm...I may must have to wrap my wiring with plastic tubing and just make it as unobvious as possible. At least I will have easy access!
     
  20. khnitz

    khnitz Daily Driver

    There is also a Tesa cloth-wrap tape that could be used. I think the last roll I bought was from Amazon.
     
    Daniel Gibson likes this.

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