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  #881  
Old 02-20-2018, 11:54 AM
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I finally got to install the Hellwig sway bar I bought 6 months ago. It required drilling some holes through the frame rails. The holes a reinforced with a through-sleeve. I did not think I could fit the drill on the inside of the rail, so I used an extra long bit and did my best to align it by eye.



Once the holes were drilled it was just a matter of lubing all the bushings and assembling the hardware. I had to drill the hole pretty low on the rail to provide clearance between the end link and the fuel line.





I would have liked to put the swaybar directly under the axle, but to get a good position for the end links I had to rotate it back a bit, so the brackets are on the tube at about 45 degrees instead of level. Hopefully that doesn't cause any problems.



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  #882  
Old 02-20-2018, 11:55 AM
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My next project is parking brake cables. I have seen a number of write-ups where people modified the "LS1" brake cables to work with these cars, but I haven't seen people modify the stock Nova cables. Why not? I picked up a couple of turnbuckles from the hardware store and dropped them in vinegar to remove the zinc plating.



Here's a video of my son helping me clean up the workbench and work on our little chemistry experiment. You can't see much - just little bubbles forming.



I had to leave them overnight because vinegar is a very weak acid, but it seemed to do the trick.



I found a 3/16" turbuckle fits perfectly over the parking brake lever and the screw hole is very close diameter to the stock parking cable. My plan is to remove the original swaged end from the cable and weld this on in it's place.



Once that was figured out, I whipped up a bracket from angle iron.









The bracket mounts to the u-bolts and angles the cable (5deg out, 10deg upward) to work inline with the lever. I just need to make the mirror image of it for the other side before I finish cut the cables and weld the ends on.
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  #883  
Old 02-20-2018, 11:58 AM
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Looks great to me. The angle of the brackets shouldnt mater at all. All that really matters is the bar is connected to the axle.
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  #884  
Old 02-20-2018, 12:05 PM
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And Im curious to see how the cable welds to that clevis. Id probably leave the cable long so it protrudes to the inside of the clevis, then expand the cable out and weld that side too. If its a pretty tight fit to begin with flaring it out and welding it should keep it from pulling through.

This is how Ive done throttle cables to brass ends. The solder doesnt really stick to the steel cable, but it keeps the strands spread out in the brass end so they cant pull through.

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  #885  
Old 02-20-2018, 12:13 PM
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I have also been thinking about trying a swaging tool on it without doing any welding at all. I do have that hydraulic hex crimper for doing battery cables ends. Hmm
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Last edited by TheBandit; 02-20-2018 at 12:20 PM.
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  #886  
Old 02-20-2018, 01:35 PM
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Thats a good idea. I wonder if you could just shove the cable through and crimp a new end on with it. Or maybe thats what you meant
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  #887  
Old 02-20-2018, 01:45 PM
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There's not enough room for a new cable end inside of the turnbuckle, at least not the larger OD aluminum ends they sell at the hardware store. Also I need most of the inside length of the turnbuckle for sufficient install clearance when putting it over the lever hook. I do like the idea though. I was thinking maybe I could just crimp down the body of the turnbuckle itself, but I'm kinda leaning toward welding still.
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  #888  
Old 02-20-2018, 04:43 PM
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Most cable is a steel alloy that hardens when heated to critical temp.
It gets brittle at the HAZ.
I have had zero long term success welding cable.

E
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  #889  
Old 02-20-2018, 04:45 PM
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Thanks for the input. What do you think about trying to crimp the turnbuckle end onto the cable using this? The threads on the ID could act is serrations to grip the cable. I think with the hydraulic assist it could crimp it down pretty solid.

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Last edited by TheBandit; 02-20-2018 at 04:51 PM.
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  #890  
Old 02-20-2018, 05:36 PM
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I think I would do a test with a piece of Hardware store cable and turnbuckle.
I would expect the cast T-buckle, to Crack, before you get a good crimp.
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  #891  
Old 02-20-2018, 05:46 PM
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Sounds like a plan. If it doesn't work out, I will probably weld or look for a crimpable wire cable end that has the right shape.
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Last edited by TheBandit; 02-20-2018 at 05:50 PM.
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  #892  
Old 02-20-2018, 10:32 PM
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Would silver solder or braze be strong enough and not affect the cable?
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  #893  
Old 02-21-2018, 12:36 AM
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Tonight I found I can get a crimp wire cable end in there just barely and still just barely get it over the lever hook. Meant to be! I'll post photos tomorrow. Thanks for making me rethink it.
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  #894  
Old 02-21-2018, 12:25 PM
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I picked up some 1/8" wire cable stops at the hardware store. They only had aluminum ones and prior to crimping they are way too big to fit into the turnbuckle. But I figured I'd give them a try anyway using a new length of cable for testing.



I used my hydraulic hex crimper to attach the end. Due to the narrow width of the dies, I had to make a series of crimps along the length of the cable stop until the whole thing was crimped down. There was significant elongation and diameter reduction, so I am confident the aluminum flowed between the wires as it's supposed to, but I had to reduce the size so much to fit into the turnbuckle - I'm not sure if it will cause any problems with the performance. These ends are rated to 340lb. Hopefully that is enough for what I'm doing. If not, I can probably take the cables to a rigging house and get steel ends put on later.





I went ahead and did a test pull with my spring gauge. No issues at 55 lb. I might try to put more weight on it to test capacity later.



The cable stop took up about half the length I had inside the turnbuckle and I was really worried about getting it on and off the lever hook for the parking brake. I eventually figured out that if I fed the cable out a little, I could bend it out of the way and get it over the hook.







So it looks like that will work and if it fails I have a backup plan to get steel ends put on. I think this is a better, more conventional solution than welding and it cost less than $3 per cable for the hardware. Fingers crossed it will work on the actual cables!
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Last edited by TheBandit; 02-21-2018 at 12:30 PM.
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  #895  
Old 02-21-2018, 03:35 PM
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On a well funtioning park brake system I bet it works great, if it was old rusty junk with allot of friction then it may not survive.
Even in a failure the it shouldn't be to difficult to get it done "right".
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  #896  
Old Yesterday, 02:09 PM
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Last night I knocked out a second, mirror image bracket for the parking brake. I made these out of 1-1/4" angle iron and incorporated a few angles to put the cable in line with the parking brake lever and maintain wheel clearance. Here you can see the 9/16" hole I drilled to accept the factory brake cable PRIOR to cutting it with a bandsaw so I would have something to hold onto while I drilled. This tab is cut at a 5 degree angle so when viewed from above, the cable is routed inward toward the center of the car and away from the wheel.





Here are a couple more shots of one of the brackets. They are 5" long measured at the top edge with a 10deg angle cut at the front. When looking from the side of the car, the 10deg points the cable downward at the front which matches the angle of the parking brake lever. If you are doing an LS1 brake swap on an unmodified rear end, the angle needed here will be less; I intentionally rotated my brakes a bit to add clearance with the leaf spring. The holes for the u-bolts are 5/8" diameter and 3-1/2" apart. The parking brake tab is welded on with the hole about at the center of the top of the bracket. This position was based on holding a ruler against the parking brake lever and drawing a line into the angle iron to ensure the cable would pull in line with the lever.





I was finally ready to cut the ends off the original cables. I used a pair of bolt cutters which made easy work of the 1/8" cable.



Next (not shown), I put tension on the cable system and used vice grips to hold the cables while I marked where the ends would need to go. I did this with the factory cable adjustment all the way out so I would have adjustment to add more tension once installed. I did not worry about marking each side at equal length; instead I measured the difference side to side under tension so I could compensate when attaching the ends. I found one side was about 1/2" shorter than the other, so when I attached the ends I moved each side by 1/4" from my mark so the cable lengths would be the same left to right when finished.

As described previously, the cable ends are 3/16" zinc turnbuckles with 1/8" aluminum cable stops from the hardware store. I crimped to the cable stops using a hydraulic hex crimper. The parking brake cables are the original cables from my Nova and other than the ends they are not modified.



Lastly (not shown), I grabbed a couple of 3/4" diameter x 6" compression springs from the hardware store. I cut 1" off the end using bolt cutters, thereby reducing the length to 5". I started by attaching the cable end onto the parking brake lever, then put the bracket into place (compressing the spring), and finally I connected the other end of the cable at the frame end. It was not easy to get the turnbuckle over the lever hook, but with slack in the system it could be done. Here is what the finished assembly looks like.







Cost of the hardware was as follows: $5 for a length of angle iron. $1.50ea for the turnbuckles. $0.50 each for the cable stops. $6 for the pair of compression springs. $1 ea for nylock nuts to attach to the u-bolts (you could put the brackets under the main u-bolt nuts but I wanted to be able to R&R without messing with the leaf springs). Total for the cable and bracketry comes out to about $16.

After adjusting the cable I was able to get good feedback from the parking brake pedal and pop release. Here is a video of it in action.



I am very happy with how it turned out and I hope it works as well as an OEM drum-in-hat parking brake should. I have a sloped driveway and I do not like relying on just the internal pawl on the transmission.
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