Front Brake Hoses STUCK Tight On My 280SE: ANY HINTS, TIPS OR ADVICE?

1979-1991 280SE, 300SE, 300SEL, 380SE, 380SEL, 380SEC, 420SE, 420SEL, 420SEC, 500SE, 500SEL, 500SEC, 560SEL, 560SEC
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Astro-Benz777
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Front Brake Hoses STUCK Tight On My 280SE: ANY HINTS, TIPS OR ADVICE?

Post by Astro-Benz777 » Mon 13 Aug, 2018 7:19 am

Hi Everyone!
Having started to notice a steady decline in the effectiveness of the brakes on my 1984 280SE (W126) I came to the forum to find some answers; amongst others, I found a post that mentioned how the Flexible Rubber Brake Hoses (from ends of the permanent stiff metal Brake Lines to the Calipers) disintegrate from the inside & potentially wear beyond the point of being safe without displaying any visible signs of the need for replacement etc etc
So, I carefully inspected all four hoses on my vehicle: The back two look and feel firm, solid & appear reasonably new..... the front two however have numerous Soft Spots (areas on the hose that feel as though they have very little below the rubber exterior) and the front drivers side even has a sizeable bulge where the interior of the hose seems to have deteriorated entirely leaving just the final exterior rubber to withstand the pressure in the braking system!! :pale:
I immediately had a friend take me to my local Euro Parts specialist (Unique) where I purchased a pair of new front brake hoses for just under $20ea (inc GST).... all good so far....almost too good...
Having done my homework before attempting to replace them, I added a new set of metric "Flare Spanners" to my ever growing shed load of tools but despite my best efforts: using a 17mm Spanner to hold the brake hose and trying to turn the nut on the Flared end of the Brake line with my new 11mm Flare Spanner, I was unable to budge either front hose and (despite using the correct tool) even managed to start to "round off" the 11mm flare nut on one side....next step was to spray with plenty of penetrating lubricant/nut/rust breaker spray, left to sit overnight and have it another go....without success :cussing:

NET RESULT: Two new brake hoses ready to o on, slightly rounded flare nuts and a set of flare spanners added to my kit....my poor dear Benz however remains in a state where I'm not driving her much and the odd time I have, only very short trips in case that bulge should burst, compromising my ability to stop in a hairy situation.

SO I FIGURE IF ANYWHERE COULD HELP, THE COMBINED KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE OF THE FORUM MEMBERS MIGHT BE ABLE TO PROVIDE A HINT, TIP, TRICK, PIECE OF ADVICE OR STEP I AM MISSING OR THAT MIGHT MAKE IT POSSIBLE FOR ME TO FINISH THIS VITAL JOB

Many thanks in advance for any assistance rendered.
W126's truly were the last real Benz in my opinion! :occasion5:
FORMER FAMILY:
1989 300SE (W126) Midnight Blue, Blue/Grey Interior (Gearhardt)
1982 380SE (W126) Thistle Green, Tan Interior (Sherman)
CURRENT DAILY DRIVE & BELOVED FAMILY MEMBER
1984 280SE (W126) Thistle Green, Tan Interior (Hilda)

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Re: Front Brake Hoses STUCK Tight On My 280SE: ANY HINTS, TIPS OR ADVICE?

Post by Henry Schuman » Mon 13 Aug, 2018 9:58 am

Those can be Buggers even when no salt or corrosion exists.
Main thing is to make sure you are turning the nut the right direction .Sometimes looking at them upside down is confusing so make sure that you are looking at the thing right .
You need a lot of leverage that sometimes you just can not get with those short line wrenches and I have had to use a big pair of vice grips to bust them loose in the past. I use those as a LAST RESORT Though.
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Re: Front Brake Hoses STUCK Tight On My 280SE: ANY HINTS, TIPS OR ADVICE?

Post by John Green » Mon 13 Aug, 2018 12:55 pm

next step was to spray with plenty of penetrating lubricant/nut/rust breaker spray, left to sit overnight and have it another go....without success :cussing:
I feel your pain. If time is on your side, just keep spraying the joint for a week or so. Then if all else fails vise grips are your friend. You need to be very carfull with where the teeth ont he vise grips are interacting with the 6 points on the flare nut. It is possible to do it without that much damage.
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Bartman4800
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Re: Front Brake Hoses STUCK Tight On My 280SE: ANY HINTS, TIPS OR ADVICE?

Post by Bartman4800 » Mon 13 Aug, 2018 4:57 pm

And a bit of heat shock helps too.

Heat up the nut with your blowtorch (keep a bucket of water around) and when quite hot spray it with the freeze stuff (or the garden hose)

Bart
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Re: Front Brake Hoses STUCK Tight On My 280SE: ANY HINTS, TIPS OR ADVICE?

Post by carl888 » Wed 29 Aug, 2018 2:47 pm

This is a common issue I've found. What I do is cut the lines which allows a ring spanner to be used on all the line hexs. If it's really tough, heat applied to the line as Bart suggests helps.

Do be careful using any petroleum based penetrant on the lines. Ingress into the brake hydraulic system of this fluid is hostile to the seals. If your hoses are swolen I'd be having a good look at the caliper seals and master cylinder as well, it's a safety issue, and these grand old dames are just aged now!

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Re: Front Brake Hoses STUCK Tight On My 280SE: ANY HINTS, TIPS OR ADVICE?

Post by CraigB » Wed 29 Aug, 2018 9:55 pm

Agree with all above. Not sure what penetrants you are using but I have had good success with Inox and while i did have success with 'Freeze release' once, I've not had great success since. I always reckon it is good to have a range of these things on the shelf and try them all. Worst case scenario, the solid line can be cut close to the nipple and a new one put on and flared, but good to have a good go first. There are cheap flare nut spanners that don't seem to fit well. I have had better success sometimes with a good quality open ender - I think 11mm and 7/16 are very close but you could try both. I don't know what it is called but I have a small spring loaded 'wrench' with fine teeth that tightens the harder you press on it - like a v on one side and a cam on the other- if you watch where the teeth contact you can sometimes get things without damage - a bit like JG comment about vise grip but these things are good as the bite more as you apply pressure. You have self serve wreckers over there - can you grab another whole metal line? - presuming you can get the flex hoses off!
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