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PostPosted: Sun 23 May 2004, 5:29 pm 
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WARNING: Brakes are a very important device.... make sure you do this properly. If you aren't confident, get a mechanic to do the job. I am not a mechanic and this is purely a writeup of my own experience... use at your own risk :)

Update 5/5/2005: It has been suggested that you replace the cordia master cylinder with the magna one. Aparrently there is a valve in the cordia master which applies a small amount of constant pressure to the rear brakes. Also, the VR4 master cylinder bolts straight up and is quite a bit bigger (1" vs 15/16") so that might be worth considering. That being said, I didn't change the cylinder and it's all working fine.

Update 26/9/2005: I have been told that the TM magna wagon discs are 244mm however the TN/TP wagon setup is 276mm. I have the 244mm setup, but if you're doing this it might be worth looking for the larger ones. If you do so, the disc part numbers will be different. Note that I can't confirm this - but the DBA catalog does NOT list 276mm TN/TP magna discs.
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Shopping list

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All parts from a Magna TM/TN/TP sedan. From the left:
  • discs - DBA part number 222
  • new brake pads
  • all the related bolts and bits
  • hubs
  • calipers
  • dust shields
  • rubber lines
  • and handbrake cables at the bottom

I paid $100 for the above bits (minus new discs and pads) from a mate, expect maybe $200 from a wrecker. Just keep your eyes out though, magna's are common as buggery so something will come up.

NOTE: I recommend new discs - I bought RDA discs for $100/pair. The shop will be able to cross reference the DBA part number to any brand. At least get the old discs machined and checked to see if they're warped, and also check thickness (min thickness is 8.4mm).


Tools required

10, 12, 13 and 17mm spanners (and sockets in same sizes)
23mm socket for hub nut
angle grinder
usuals - pliers, side cutters, hammer, etc.


Step 1 - prepping the parts

I spent a good couple of hours in the sink with an assortment of wire brushes, screwdrivers and sandpaper to get 20 years of brake dust and crap off this gear. Using a solvent would help the process. It all came up so nice I'm not even going to bother painting them.

I completely dismantled ONE caliper and scrubbed it and all it's parts clean, then I left them to dry. Once that caliper had dried I pulled the other one apart one section at a time, and rebuilt the first one while I did it. I probably could've stripped em both and built em both but this way just made 100% sure I didn't screw up, and brakes are important after all ;)

The handbrake was really hard to get right... I put one of the new discs on the bench, put the pads in the caliper, and put that over the disc... this way I could get the adjustment perfect... worked fairly well but took a long time to think of it :P

I cleaned up all the other parts the other week, there's probably 3-4 hours work all up cleaning the whole lot but it was worth it.


Step 2 - removing the drum assemblies

Remove the centre console and unhook the handbrake cables. Jack the car and support on stands, remove the wheel. Remove split pin and hub nut cap, remove hub nut and big flat washer (don't lose it) then pull the outer drum off.

You take the shoes off by turning the two little caps in this pic, the pins slip through the slot. Then just yank and pull at the shoes until they come off... if you're going to use them for something take more care but I just ripped the bastards off.

Once the shoes are off, remove the metal brake line (watch leaking fluid) and take the rear section of the drum off by removing the 4 bolts holding it to the trailing arm. Rip the handbrake cables out of their clips and pull them through the floor.


Step 3 - fitting the magna hubs and discs

Grind a section of the trailing arm away, shown here. Note: do this BEFORE fitting the hub/shield, I discovered :P

Take your shiny clean hub and dust shield and fit them like this. Fit the wheel bearings to the discs and slide it on to the axle. Put the big flat washer back on and do up the hub nut, fit nut cap and new split pin.

Run the magna handbrake cables through the holes in the floor (remove rear seat first), and get the grommets in. The cables are too long so you will need to take up some slack somewhere, I ran them around a few things under the car to take up the room, they also turn a bit in the car.


Step 4 - fitting the magna calipers

For the lines, you can either flare the steel cordia lines or have new rubber lines made. You could also replace the fitting on the end of the magna rubber line. The cheapest option is to reflare the lines, but since the local place decided they couldn't do it and we couldn't drive the car, I opted to have new braided lines made... they weren't much more expensive than new rubber lines. If you do decide to have new lines made, make sure they are ADR approved and the workshop is legit.

Bend the steel lines to somewhere that they will sit and hold the rubber lines, and not get in the way of anything. My lines look like this. Be careful - just make sure you don't kink them and you'll be right.

Hook the rubber line to the caliper with the banjo bolt, and put the new pads in. Fit the 2 bolts that hold it to the hub, not fully tight yet. Make sure the handbrake lever actually makes the pads grab the surface... turn it backwards to change it's position.... adjusting it is an art that I suggest you practice while you are cleaning the calipers in Step 1...

Hook the rubber/braided line and handbrake cable up, and tighten the 2 caliper bolts. Make sure the handbrake is adjusted correctly and you're done :)


Step 5 - finishing up

Once you've done both sides, bleed ALL 4 lines (not just the rears) and stick the wheels back on.. you're done. Before you go for a drive, make sure the pedal doesn't go to the floor... this indicates a leak or something . One of my banjo bolts wasn't done up quite tight enough and was PISSING fluid out, if I had gone for a drive like that I would've had no brakes :(

Take it for a very careful drive, do a few brake tests if you can... just to be sure nothing has been forgotten. If you survive the first few minutes then things are probably all good, but take it easy for a while just to be sure ;)


Conclusion

This was a relatively easy conversion, and I'd recommend it to anyone who feels confident doing it. Braking performance has increased significantly, as has the strength of the pedal. I left the front brakes as they were (didn't even fit new pads) because I wanted to see how much of a difference it made, and it is quite noticeable. The fronts still lock up before the rears, but the car feels MUCH more stable under brakes.

If anyone would like some help or has a question which is not answered in this FAQ, feel free to PM me. I think this FAQ is pretty thorough, but if I have missed something then by all means let me know :)

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Last edited by CowboyDan on Mon 26 Sep 2005, 1:19 pm, edited 17 times in total.

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PostPosted: Thu 10 Jun 2004, 1:00 pm 
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cause i'm at home sick, and bored out of my brain. i rang up ABS here in brisbane, and got new prices, and found out that lucas brake pads are better than the bendix ultimate ones.. bendix are good for 370degrees, while lucas are good for 650sumthin degrees.. that's heaps better.. anyways.. here's prices for new stuff, incase people didn't wanna bolt on a caliper that's almost 20years old.

discs:
DBA slotted $105 each
DBA x drilled and slotted $135 each
std type pov pack disc $55 each

pads:
Bendix advance $43 set
lucas $50 set

calipers:
PBR calipers (dude behind counter reckons they come with std pads) $140 each

i'm sure you could get it cheaper elsewhere.. the guy at ABS said if i found a cheaper price he'd do the same, so yeah.. seemed like an alright bloke.. just to give you's an idea of how much this shit is new. obviously a lot more expensive then buying from the wreckers! if you know how to talk to the blokes at the wreckers, add $50 for dust shields, lines, mounts, etc. you could probably get away with the whole excercise for $450 if ya lucky as opposed to $250-$300 if using 2nd hand calipers.

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PostPosted: Sun 13 Jun 2004, 10:01 pm 
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I just thought i would say the conversion is relatively easy, just keep in mind if you have standard rims you will run into porblems as i did -

but if your doing this conversion you proably have 17in rims so you'll be sweet.

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PostPosted: Mon 14 Jun 2004, 12:37 am 
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FAQ has been finished, but will be reviewed over the next couple of days... it's late.

Comments and suggestions welcome :)

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PostPosted: Tue 15 Jun 2004, 9:11 pm 
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Well done , very good FAQ


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