PowerShellMan

Parking Brake Cable change 2006 Fortwo 450

23 posts in this topic

Dare I ask... is this a "Nightmare job" and I should leave this to my local mechanic? 

 

The part is about $200 from MB (they can get it in 3 days and everywhere else is "unobtanium")

 

Trying to decide to have a go at it or just pay some $$$ into my local Mechanic's fund.   I don't mind paying out but if it's "stupid simple Sean" then why not?

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Posted (edited) · Report post

easy job

 

got mine cheaper from germanparts.ca 

 

unless its the center one...i dont remember them having centers

Edited by LooseLugNuts

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MB only had one so I presume it's all one piece :)

 

thanks on the website, I'll see what they're like for sourcing stuff.   Rockauto.com has been good for most of it but then there is the weird "unobtanium stuff" only MB seems to have or items which vanished and you have to source from the UK (Like the rear license plate markers, $20 a piece for LED versions)

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So how does one check... pop off that big ugly plastic that hides the bottom of the car? ;)

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6 hours ago, PowerShellMan said:

Dare I ask... is this a "Nightmare job" and I should leave this to my local mechanic? 

 

If you don't have a hoist its awkward. Centre of car and tight to work on.

You also have to take apart the rear brake shoes with all the assorted springs that I don't like.

If you have the time its all doable.

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1 minute ago, PowerShellMan said:

 

So how does one check... pop off that big ugly plastic that hides the bottom of the car? ;)

 

There are 8 x 8mm screws that hold up the rear belly pan. It's hinged and then you swing it down. Helps if its on a hoist or ramps.

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i changed a set,  the only part i found hard was getting the cables off the mounting brackets.  there ar 3 or 4 barbs on the ends of the cables that secure them in place.

i am sure there is a special tool to release them,   i eventually managed with a set of needle nose pliers to get them released.

they are part of the cables,  so if you are replacing the cables,  it doesn't matter if you ruin them.

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LOL @ "Unobtainium" .. Looks like 'someone' has seen the movie "The Core"

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Engineering origin

Since the late 1950s,[a][1] aerospace engineers have used the term "unobtainium" when referring to unusual or costly materials, or when theoretically considering a material perfect for their needs in all respects, except that it does not exist. By the 1990s, the term was in wide use, even in formal engineering papers such as "Towards unobtainium [new composite materials for space applications]."[2][3] The word unobtainium may well have been coined in the aerospace industry to refer to materials capable of withstanding the extreme temperatures expected in re-entry.[1]Aerospace engineers are frequently tempted to design aircraft which require parts with strength or resilience beyond that of currently available materials.

Later, unobtainium became an engineering term for practical materials that really exist, but are difficult to get.[4] For example, during the development of the SR-71 Blackbird spy plane, Lockheed engineers at the "Skunk Works" under

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Both cables are identical, no centre cable it's a rod with teeth on it, with a spring on the bottom .....it's an easy job start to finish if you can get at the rear of the brake drums. I didn't need to dismantle anything as I wouldn't expected to like Glenn is saying which is normally the way you do it. IF you clamp a small needle nose vise grips to the spring that holds the cable so you can get that nasty clip lose the cable easily unhooks and then falls out....surprised me. Went back in the same way. Nothing like doing it on other cars but it's all designed the same.....that is why I was so shocked I didn't need to dismantle the entire system. You will have some difficulty simply due to the tight spot getting it onto the centre pull system if memory serves me right. I did mine with the sub frame lowered so it was easy so to speak and everything was brand new or made like new and freshly painted. 
They also were not stupid money either or I would have used one of the cables as it was still good, one had a split or rub in the case and rusted solid!  The actual hand brake comes out of the car easily also to be able to get it cleaned up etc. Itr simply falls back over the toothed flat rod which holds the two cables under the floor.

Change it all I think the $90 price sounds right.....I bought mine last winter so don't remember exactly.  It could have come from MW-SMART also but I'm thinking maybe GermanAuto sounds right?  Don't quote me on that for sure...lol.

 

 

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might as well check the integrity of the shoe adjusters while youre in there...i remember buying some cheap at rockauto

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Posted (edited) · Report post

smartz thread mentions special tools and dropping subframe to access inboard ends....

 

 

i know 100% i did neither of those...its been a few years but i remember changing those cables in less than an hour and i work like a sloth..in the driveway with no hoist

 

just use needle nose for the retainers ..or a screwdriver...or a hoseclamp if you want to save them..or smash them thru with a punch..the old cables are buggered anyway just get them off and put new ones

Edited by LooseLugNuts
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It would take you longer to figure out how to make then make those tools than it would to change the cables maybe once in the time you own the car. Now if you were like Glenn, then maybe, but as you say, if you are going after those cables they aren't working right so best way is to replace them, so who cares how they come out, in one piece or 20...lol.

I also think I used a set of right angle long needle nose pliers to manipulate those locks. Now that you mention it. But again mine was also lowered.  IF you really need to you can release the backing plate and allow it to move slightly while it's all still attached to the brake lines etc just so you can get at the cable "U" slot it rides in to help...

 

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The problem is you cannot get long nose pliers access to the inboard end unless subframe is lowered. 

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i definitely did not lower my subframe

 

maybe something is different in cabrio ?

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The only reason I lowered it was to do my engine rebuild not to do the brakes, the brake cables were done because they were there and I have changed all wear items to new.

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M'm I see the same group here likes putting their 2 cents worth, I would like to give it a try since this is too easy to answer instead of my airbag question.

Here's what I would do... get a good pair of bolt cutters and snip the cables to be replaced close to the brake hub and pull lever. you will save a lot of time removing them and you can easily fish it through once yo see how everything is connected.

 

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M'm I see the same group here likes putting their 2 cents worth, I would like to give it a try since this is too easy to answer instead of my airbag question.

 

 

OK,...I say just plug them in and go....and wait for the BANG...!

I can't comment on something I don't have experience with, or you'll get the wrong result that you may be searching for?   Just saying.   Sorry.   

I would say go over to Evilution.co.uk and ask Kane personally there. He may answer if you ask nicely. He is a nice guy really. He's old school and likes the please and thank you route, you know common curtacy etc...be even better if I could spell...lol.  Not saying you don't use this method but some I hear do not and that gets under his skin. and rightly so, imho.   He has many years of experience and they do know plenty over there. It would be similar on a gasoline model so wouldn't matter seeing as most of their stuff relates to gasoline driven smarts where as we are the opposite, the dirty boys...lol

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Posted (edited) · Report post

47 minutes ago, Willys said:

 

 

M'm I see the same group here likes putting their 2 cents worth, I would like to give it a try since this is too easy to answer instead of my airbag question.

 

 

OK,...I say just plug them in and go....and wait for the BANG...!

I can't comment on something I don't have experience with, or you'll get the wrong result that you may be searching for?   Just saying.   Sorry.   

I would say go over to Evilution.co.uk and ask Kane personally there. He may answer if you ask nicely. He is a nice guy really. He's old school and likes the please and thank you route, you know common curtacy etc...be even better if I could spell...lol.  Not saying you don't use this method but some I hear do not and that gets under his skin. and rightly so, imho.   He has many years of experience and they do know plenty over there. It would be similar on a gasoline model so wouldn't matter seeing as most of their stuff relates to gasoline driven smarts where as we are the opposite, the dirty boys...lol

Thanks Willy for the suggestion both " the big bang idea" and tweeting Kane. I was a member there years ago and your right most of his content was for the 451 and what he had for the 450 was not always complete. I find fq101.co.uk to be a lot more helpful..so far I'm figuring it out on my own.  I've see a lot of content has been deleted here by the administrators or secretly placed in another closed area of this site. This site https://fq101.co.uk/data-and-reference/59-sensors has been very helpful. 

Edited by Specter

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On 7/29/2020 at 0:02 AM, Leadwing said:

LOL @ "Unobtainium" .. Looks like 'someone' has seen the movie "The Core"

@Leadwing as mentioned earlier it's a VERY old term in most industries.  I work in IT (and have been a hobbyist since the early '80s) so "Unobtanium" is a very common term I'm used to especially on old computers and old cars.   My best friend out there is a car Mechanic that once owned a small fleet of Ladas where most of their parts are truly "Unobtanium" or "VeryExpensium" if you swap over from Fiats.

 

Glad for all the tips.   I've got 75% of the stuff here already from RockAuto and the last shipment from Mercedes and Rock Auto on Wednesday.

 

Can't wait to have the 2nd one on the road and then task two, Paint it Emerald Green :)

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3 hours ago, PowerShellMan said:

@Leadwing as mentioned earlier it's a VERY old term in most industries. 

 

Thanks to everyone for bringing it to my attention that I don't keep up with the terminology commonly used in the mechanical world. LOL .... The first time I hear the term was in the movie "The Core" with Hilary Swank and Bruce Greenwood.

 

I guess I have been "told" and educated .:thumbsup_anim:

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