R400D: Routing braided rear brake hoses around the Watts links

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John Vine
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R400D: Routing braided rear brake hoses around the Watts links

Just a sanity check, really...

As part of my rear suspension refurb, I'm replacing the fixed brake lines with braided flexible hoses (CC supplied).

Can someone who has fitted these to a car with Watts links please advise on the best route?  This is how they look at the moment (not yet fixed to the de Dion tube)

Nearside:

Offside:


Are these correct?  The hoses seem to be very close to the front links, but I can't see a better route.  There seems to be no room to run the hoses under the front links.

Also, if I have chosen the best (only?) route, would it be a good idea to fit some sort of protection (spiral?) over the hoses where they come close to moving parts?

JV

martyn
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Hi John,   I had this exact problem when I fitted hoses last year.  It is a bit of a poor design on Caterham's part, or perhaps both me and you are unnecessarily paranoid about snagging the brake hose.

I wasn't happy with the routing at all, so I bought some goodridge 45 degree elbow pieces and fitted those coming out of the caliper, and slightly pointing down towards the de-dion tube.  The hose then fits neatly under the front watts link, and cleanly along the de-dion tube.  I did have to shorten the hoses slightly as they were then excessively long, but the connectors are designed for this kind of adjustment.

I'm sure lots of people have it set up as you do in the pictures and it is probably fine.  I just preferred my routing.

Photo to follow..

martyn
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Its still not perfect in my opinion, but it keeps the hose away from the moving part of the watts link and the spring.  Yes its close-ish to the base of the damper, but that should all move in unison with the caliper and de-dion anyway so no problem.  You can just about see the hose P-clipped onto the de-dion so there is very little room for it to move around.

I wrapped some strong tape around the hose - not for protection but to allow me to see if it is rubbing against anything without damaging the braiding.  So far there's been no sign of rubbing after 1500 miles.

John Vine
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Thanks, Martyn.  That elbow is a neat idea.  Do you know the part number for it?

How much did you have to cut off the hoses, and is it straightforward? 

Does your layout still allow the caliper to be removed and hoisted easily out of the way (one of the main benefits of the flexes)?

JV

ECR
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John

In the absence of the purpose made hose cutter, I have found the best way to cut the hose is to wrap a few layers of masking tape round the hose (to minimise unravelling) and cut it with a thin Dremel cutting disk. Blow through the hose after to remove any residue. There's a description of the hose/fitting jointing method on Think Auto's catalogue (downloadable)

John Vine
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Thanks, Roger.

JV

martyn
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Sorry I cant tell you a part number.  I actually went into Merlin Motorsport at castle combe circuit with the hose and asked for a 45 degree piece that would fit.  Pretty sure the ones supplied from caterham are imperial not metric.  You can figure it out if you know the hose size and connector thread.  See the merlin website, you should find it easily.

Its a bit tricky, but I managed it so cannot be that bad.  The 45 degree piece doesn't simply screw into the piece you already have.  You need to cut off the existing connector are refit the 45 degree one.  A dremel or similar will be required for a safe clean cut, and wrap in tape first so the braiding doesn't go everywhere.

A problem is that the 45 degree piece doesn't swivel in the orientation you need it to.  Once you've tightened up the end at the T piece, it could be pointing in any direction (obviously not good).  So, before fitting the elbow connector trial fit it on the car with the T piece end torqued up.  Then mark the hose and connector in the orientation you want it.  Then follow those markings when fitting the elbow connector.

Goodridge do make a double swivel connector that gets around this problem and will possibly be safer, but the price will make your eyes water!  HERE

John Vine
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Thanks for that, Martyn.  I think I'll run with it as per my photos for the time being.  I plan to attach a short length of rubber hose next to the Watts links, to act both as protection and as a rubbing witness.  If that suggests a problem, I think I'll do as you did.  

JV

martyn
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To answer your other question..  Yes it gives a bit of wiggle room when changing pads or bleeding the brakes, but obviously no where near as much as your routing.  Still miles better that the fixed copper hoses though.

John Vine
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OK, thanks.

JV

John Vine
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I plan to attach a short length of rubber hose next to the Watts links...

This is what I ended up doing:

Nearside:

 

Offside:

 

JV