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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

I have a '67 El Camino and I just got done rebuilding my front end (ball joints, coil springs, bushings, shocks, etc.) but now I am ready to tackle a disc brake conversion on my car. Can I use my Drum brake spindles or do I have to buy disc brake spindles? I really don't want to seperate my ball joints again because I don't want to ruin the rubber. If I have no choice wheather to replace the spindles where do I get those poly boots for my ball joints?

Well anyways...let me get back to my questions:

1. Can I use my drum brake spindles for a disc brake conversion.

2. What "exactly do I need" from a 64-72 GM A Body for a disc brake conversion? Can I go any higher years than '72? i.e. 1974>

3. Can you give me a list of cars that would be good besides chevelles, and elkys?

Thanks in advance...

JEFF RIDGE
 

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Will your budget allow you to purchase a conversion kit? If so, that's the way to go. You cannot use drum spindles. The best way to separate the ball joint from the spindle is to take a good size ball peen hammer, turn the spindle as far it will go one way or the other (depends on if you're left or right handed), and give it a few good whacks on the side of the boss where the tapered hole is drilled for the ball joint stud. Make sure the nut is loose first. I only use the pickle fork as a last resort.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I would have to save up for a little to get a new conversion kit. I was just planning on finding a "donor car" and doing it this week. I don't have a show car or anything and disc brakes are pretty plentiful and simple......

Do any of you guys know where to get a disc conversion kit for under $500? I don't really need power assist if that helps.......
 

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You can get your spindles machined, then you still need caliper brackets, dust shields ,calipers, then lines, master and booster.

Now, I do have a set of disc spindles, brackets, dust shields (one has a crease where it was bent), and a booster with the master still attached.

Email if you intreseted and want pictures.
[email protected] .


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DG
Springfield, Ohio
70 Chevelle Malibu

www.genxspeed.com/dg/chevy.htm
[email protected]
TEAM Chevelle Member #0086
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eBay username: dg98adams

[This message has been edited by DG (edited 01-23-2000).]
 

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JR67,

To answer some of your questions.

#1. Any auto parts store should be able to get the boots for you or call PST 1-800-247-2288 or [http:\\www.p-s-t.com]
#2. I personaly would not use drum spindles. Like DG said, It would involve machine work.
Cheaper to buy new conversion kit or junk yard it.
#3 Spindle, rotors, cailpers, preportioning
valve, Masters cylinder, brake booster, (provide your car isn't power assisted drums) and all the small stuff like caliper hoses, brearing and seals,
#2 I would try to stick to same model years as your El Camino. But try looking in other GM cars, Buick, Pontiac, ect...

www.p-s-t.com
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JR
70 396SS El Camino #'s Matching.
69 396SS Chevelle, project "Street Bruiser"
H-D Ultra Classic E-Glide
72 Chevy C20 Flatbed, $500 DRMO sale. Thanks Uncle Sam
I live to own toyz...

[This message has been edited by SS396ELKY (edited 01-23-2000).]
 

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When I did the conversion on my 65 Chevelle I used a 72 el camino donor car's spindles backing plate and caliper brackets. I bought new wheel bearings, seals, rotors, rebuilt calipers, brake hoses, master cylinder and power booster from my local parts store. I could have used the ones from the donor car, but I wanted new parts for safety purposes. The only other part you will need is the brake proportioning valve, which I got from my local chevy dealer. In all the new parts instances I asked for part for a 72 chevelle. I think that in 67 and 68, GM had a disc brake option that had dual piston calipers. I know that the rotors and calipers were different and are available through year one, but they are very expensive. If you have any other questions, e mail me.
 

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I have noticed several ads lately where brake manufacturers have come out with conversion kits using the existing drum spindles. From the ads it looks to be a simple bolt on deal.

[This message has been edited by BillsSS (edited 01-24-2000).]
 

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I've seen several ads about Wilwood brake kits which claim to work with existing drum spindles. I've yet to speak with anyone who has done this conversion. You'd definitely have to go with the heavy duty kit for heavier cars. I think I'd feel safer finding a donor car with the proper disc setup complete with spindles.
 

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Keep in mind the Disc conversion will set your overall tire to tire distance approx. 1/2" to 3/4" total outboard.

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Lowered '67 Elcamino
ZZ430HP / 4L60
"Canyon Carver"
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Really? What mags should I look in to research these brake manufacturers?

I would really want to look into this because I do not feel like seperating my ball joints again and replacing my spindles. So Wilwood is a company?

THANKS
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Really? What mags should I look in to research these brake manufacturers?

I would really want to look into this because I do not feel like seperating my ball joints again and replacing my spindles. So Wilwood is a company?

THANKS
 

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Jeff, for your El Camino the Wilwood 'heavy duty' (any vehicle over 2,800lbs) front disc brake kit is part# 140-2285. It bolts right up to your exhisting spindle. Have never used em' yet, but Wilwood has one of the best reputations in high performance brake kits. Expect to spend some extra money (over a bone yard set-up) for their units. Give em' a call at (805) 388-1188.

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1970 Malibu - 383 'Fog Fed' Stroker. Houston, Texas...Gold Member #39
Keep America Beautiful - Drive A Brute Force Chevelle!
 

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In reply to Randy's response; I have found the most effective way of removing tapered ball joints is to use two large sledge-hammers (I never use a pickle fork). Rest one sledge up against one side of the spindle boss and use the other sledge to strike a blow against the opposite side of the spindle boss. I use a pair of 10 Lb. hammers and can usually free the ball-joint in one blow. *NOTE*make sure the castellated nut is loose but still threaded on!
 

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The best way to seperate the steering knuckle from the ball joints is to use a steering knuckle taper breaker. It looks like a big threaded rod with two nuts on the end. Stick one end in the upper balljoint and the other end in the lower ball joint. Turn the nut untill the taper is broken. Saves your balljoint boots too. Don't tell anyone about the tool though, it's an auto tech's inside secret
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Looks like a pretty interesting tool and makes a lot more sense than the pickle forks......

Thanks
 

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Modify drum brake spindles to fit disc brakes.
The top mounting boss is to long on drum brake spindles. If it is cut down or machined down 1/2 to 3/4 inch it turns drum brake spindles to disc brake spindles.
My question is does anyone know for sure the exact amount that has to be removed?
I have heard .610 and also .750
Is either one correct?
Thank You.
 

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The best way to seperate the steering knuckle from the ball joints is to use a steering knuckle taper breaker. It looks like a big threaded rod with two nuts on the end. Stick one end in the upper balljoint and the other end in the lower ball joint. Turn the nut untill the taper is broken. Saves your balljoint boots too. Don't tell anyone about the tool though, it's an auto tech's inside secret

Hey you all,
I have the best and cheapest way you will ever find to separate ball joints. What I use is a 1/2" diameter bolt and nut, a big flat washer, and a couple of spacers with a 1/2" hole and they are about 5/8" to 3/4" long. I think these were used for an A/C bracket, possibly off of a Pontiac, or Chevy big block, it's been so long since I've gotten them, I don't recall.
But anyway, What you do is to place the bold head against one of the ball joint studs, and have the nut on it with the washer on the outside of the nut, and then you use the spacers to fill the extra distance if needed, adjusting the nut to tighten up the slack. Oh, and the bolt is about 3 1/2" to 4" long. Once you have loosened the ball joint nut, you begin to turn the nut of the tool in the off direction, so that it puts pressure on both ball joints. The bolt and nut I use have 3/4" heads, and you will need 2 wrenches for this, one to hold the bolt still, the other to turn the nut. it may take a little while for the joint to pop loose, but it always does, every time, and it really saves your joint boot and your spindle. I used to use the old hammer trick and pickle forks, but niether way seemed very effective. Then one day I was looking at a bolt and nut and thought "Hey, why not?" . Been doing that now for over 20 years.
I hope this helps some of you so you don't damage your stuff. Good luck, Rick Cook, SV, AZ
 

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Hey you all,
I have the best and cheapest way you will ever find to separate ball joints. What I use is a 1/2" diameter bolt and nut, a big flat washer, and a couple of spacers with a 1/2" hole and they are about 5/8" to 3/4" long. I think these were used for an A/C bracket, possibly off of a Pontiac, or Chevy big block, it's been so long since I've gotten them, I don't recall.
But anyway, What you do is to place the bold head against one of the ball joint studs, and have the nut on it with the washer on the outside of the nut, and then you use the spacers to fill the extra distance if needed, adjusting the nut to tighten up the slack. Oh, and the bolt is about 3 1/2" to 4" long. Once you have loosened the ball joint nut, you begin to turn the nut of the tool in the off direction, so that it puts pressure on both ball joints. The bolt and nut I use have 3/4" heads, and you will need 2 wrenches for this, one to hold the bolt still, the other to turn the nut. it may take a little while for the joint to pop loose, but it always does, every time, and it really saves your joint boot and your spindle. I used to use the old hammer trick and pickle forks, but niether way seemed very effective. Then one day I was looking at a bolt and nut and thought "Hey, why not?" . Been doing that now for over 20 years.
I hope this helps some of you so you don't damage your stuff. Good luck, Rick Cook, SV, AZ
I went to HD and bought a 5/8" coupler and 2 bolts. Slide in between upper and lower BJ's and expand. The tool ran $5.

SC&C sells a much nicer tool for $20:

http://www.scandc.com/tools.htm
 
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