The converting, maintenance, and operation of a Suzuki Samurai conversion to Electric power.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

E Brake installation

The Ebrake on the Suzuki left a lot to be desired especially since there is no engine compression to keep it from rolling.

Using a rock was advised as a chock when parked on an incline especially if you were trying to keep her from rolling backwards.

Since the Suzuki is so popular among rock-crawlers and off-roaders there is lots of after market stuff available. Spidertrax created a kit to replace the Ebrake. One reason is many off-roaders replace the rear drum brakes with disks and lose the Ebrake. A quick search showed that Lowrange Off Road had the best price for the Spidertrax kit. I also purchased a set of interior panels from them at the same time.

The Spidertrax kit is an aluminum disk and caliper that mounts on the rear output of the transfer case. They also supply heavy duty mounts for the transfer case. The bonded rubber mounts are replaced with thru bolts and polyurethane bushings. The installation is simple.

Remove the forward end of the driveshaft from the transfer case output.Attach the mounting plate for the caliper to the back end of the transfer case. (Why are there 4 convenient tapped holes in the transfer case?) Install the aluminum disk between the transfer case and the driveshaft using the new longer bolts provided. Hook the existing Ebrake cable to the caliper. All done!

The installation is simple, but didn't prove to be easy.

The hassles. The nuts on the transfer case mounts really didn't want to be separated after 20 years. The convenient holes on the back of the transfer case really didn't want bolts threaded into them. Tip. If you can figure out how to get the output flange off thetransfer case life would be much easier. Run a tap through the holes. Tighten the bolts with a socket. I couldn't get the nut that holds the flange on loose even after I unpeened the locknut. Neither an impact wrench on 130# pressure nor a 2 foot breaker bar would turn it.

I filed a notch in a short bolt to use as a sort of tap to clean the threads. I ended up having to cut a 1/4 inch off two of the mounting bolts and putting a nut on the third as a spacer and tightening each of them with an open end wrench. :-(

Now to hook up the cable. You are to drill two holes in the frame and bolt the cable tab to the outside of the frame. Unfortunately, two battery boxes prevented me from doing that. One is outside the frame completely blocking the frame and the other is inside the frame in the way of the cable route. Serendiptiously, there was a leftover mount on the crossmember that I could attach the tab to. I reinforced the attachment with a piece of steel hooked around a body mount and bolted to the tab.

Of course, now the tab was closer to the caliper than designed so the cable was too long. I shortened it by looping the cable and fastening it with a couple small cable clamps.

Looking at the picture, the tab that ends the cable sheath is at the bottom. The loop to shorten the cable is near the middle and the connection to the caliper is near the top. The clip at the end of the cable is what was on it originally. The bolt with locknut is the adjuster for the caliper/rotor clearance. Somehow the photo got rotated in uploading. The "wall" on the left is a battery box running across the vehicle perpendicular to the frame.

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