Front caliper bolt fix.



You will all remember that some time ago I posted a request for suggestions
for keeping the front caliper bolts tight. Also the suitability of Milner's
generic caliper repair kit for all 80's. (Got no replies !).
To explain, its a recognised problem with all beam axle toys fitted with
front disc brakes. The calipers - and especially the LHS caliper - shake
their 12mm mounting bolts loose, and on the 80 in particular its usually
the lower bolt that comes loose first. Mine has been no exception over the
past 3 years or so. Checking at service intervals is not good enough, you
have to do it every 2 weeks or so if you are in rough country.
Last time it did it I was in rough country where the inside of the cabin is
dominated by the noise from the original 'budgie catch' on the rear troopie
doors. So I did not hear at first the 'tinggg' every time I used the brakes
which is a sign that a bolt is loose. Eventually it threw one bolt and
loosened the other. I noticed it as I approached home on a normal asphalt
road. On inspection I could see that the threads in the mounting lugs were
damaged as well as those on the remaining bolt.
It was either a new swivel casting - not rich enough, and not enough
patience to wait 3 weeks for one - a second hand casting from my supreme
local scrapyard (sorry this is not Ulster John B, your dreams are answered
by my local scrapyard that has all the UN's write-offs dismantled and ready
for sale) - or maybe re-tapping the threads with as near a suitable size as
possible, maybe even a half inch UNF?
So, as I can't get into heavy engineering in my garage, I went to my
one-man-toy-band (the guy who was workshop manager for the Red Cross toy
fleet for 10 years). Thankfully he immediately told me that International
Red Cross's workshop mafia had all agreed a long time ago on a standard fix
for the problem as it is so common. They approve drilling-out the mounting
lugs and tapping for a 14mm bolt. This is an unusual size, especially in
ISO fine, but obtainable if you look hard enough. And of course, my man has
a stock of them. One small problem is that - if you look - toy use smaller
bolt heads than is standard all around their cars. Like a 12mm bolt will
normally have a 19mm head, but toy uses 17mm. Thankfully there is generous
space on the back of the caliper to accommodate a larger bolt head without
any modification, though a thin walled socket is required to get it in firmly.
So problem fixed, but if any of you have to do it, don't cut corners, take
the casting off and drill it out in a pillar drill to get the hole
absolutely plumb. I also need an axle shaft seal on this side of the axle,
maybe one every 6 months. Again my man said that it goes with the brake
problem. He said that the general conclusion is that as the vehicles get
older, so the long shaft side (LHS) gets more play in it, so with more
vibration going-on, there is more wear on the seal and more rattling of the
caliper bolts. I do appreciate however, that the use my car gets is
exceptional to most of those on the list. They are 2 quid from Milner and I
keep a stock, along with swivel seal kits too.
Finally the brake seals. I decided that I would get and then overhaul a
spare caliper from the scrapyard (sorry again John B ;o) and that was 50
quid. I put in the new Milner seal kit without any problem. I was worried
that as mine was a single circuit caliper there would be some differences
with other European market models (mine's an Asian market LHD one) but no
need to worry.
'92 HZJ80 ex UN surplus in Bosnia (where yesterday I drove home for 4 and
half hours in a real tornado - low black cloud, lightning, high swirling
winds, dense blizzard, chains on the back axle - 6 separate spouts were
seen in Sarajevo, but nice and sunny this morning though)


U do seem to give your trucks a hard time :)
I have lost one of my brake caliper bolts on my LHS (as u sit in the drives
seat and look out or DS-US truck) on the front.
(approx 90-100K miles when it happened).
Also have lost one on the rear and that had to be retapped for a larger size
(can't remember what side). Not as concerned as its tht rear. My front one
(thankfully) did not have to be retapped.
However I do keep an eye on them and also the sterring arm knuckle bolts (as
other US guys have noticed some loose).
Lal in Colorado


Hi Toy80/Jon,
Out of interest, on the rare occasion that you come over here, are you
ever in the position to bring stuff over?
With such a shortage of scrap LCs in the UK, I would have thought you
could do a bit of trade bringing (light) stuff over.
Julian Voelcker
Mobile: 07971 540362
Cirencester, United Kingdom
1994 HDJ80, 2.5" OME Lift, ARB
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