Aging Front Caliper - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-05-2018, 05:08 AM Thread Starter
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Aging Front Caliper

My car felt like one of the front brakes was rubbing now and then while I was driving.

A friend told me to test which wheel was hotter. The driver front wheel was definitely hotter than the other side after driving.

I took off the caliper and had a look. In the pictures you can see that there is what looks like a strip of tape glued to each side of the caliper. One side had a tear and was bunching up. I cut off the defective area and the brakes don't seem to drag nearly as much. However I do sense that there is still a bit of drag from time to time. I also noticed that that wheel is still a bit hotter than the other side after driving, but nothing too shocking.

My question is, how important is that tape? Can I replace it with a new piece? If so where could I buy it?

Also, if I did decide to buy a new caliper at some point I noticed that the list price for a new one is more than $1000. Does anyone have an old one in good shape that they might wish to sell for a lot less than that?
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-05-2018, 05:56 AM
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they aren't that important, probably have more to do with noise reduction of the pad backing plates hitting the caliper than anything else. You could get this though....

https://www.eliseparts.com/products/...rbishment-kit/
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-05-2018, 06:14 AM
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None of my calipers have that tape or ever had since I owned them. And they didnt make any noise with normal street brakes.

You can buy calipers on the forums regularly for $200-300 each.

2007 Exige S with almost every track mod...
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-05-2018, 06:15 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks!

Actually that kit does not look too expensive. I'm surprised to see pistons in the kit. I didn't know those could be replaced separately.

How hard would it be to replace the pistons? Do you need special tools or knowledge?
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-05-2018, 06:17 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by kfennell View Post
None of my calipers have that tape or ever had since I owned them. And they didnt make any noise with normal street brakes.

You can buy calipers on the forums regularly for $200-300 each.
I might keep my eyes open for one of those sales, thanks. I've already picked up used shocks and rotors on the forum. Love this forum!

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-05-2018, 06:29 AM
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Thanks!

Actually that kit does not look too expensive. I'm surprised to see pistons in the kit. I didn't know those could be replaced separately.

How hard would it be to replace the pistons? Do you need special tools or knowledge?
Front calipers are SUPER easy to rebuild.

2007 Exige S with almost every track mod...
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-05-2018, 06:36 AM
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Thanks!

Actually that kit does not look too expensive. I'm surprised to see pistons in the kit. I didn't know those could be replaced separately.

How hard would it be to replace the pistons? Do you need special tools or knowledge?
I'd recommend just a re-build kit as well. The pistons come out very easy, actually be careful they don't fly out and hit something. The method I used was to remove the caliper from the car, place a piece of wood between the two pistons and put pressure into the brake line fitting (I used an air compressor but maybe you could rig up something hydraulic instead).
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-05-2018, 06:53 AM
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rebuilds are not difficult. the hardest part would be getting out the pistons but that is easily done with some preparation.

You could do as LostPawn suggested, when I did mine I just pumped the brakes while there was nothing in the caliper to get the pistons to come out a bit. Be careful doing that though, if you pump too much you'll pop the piston out completely and get brake fluid everywhere.

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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-05-2018, 07:05 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the responses! Rebuild sounds interesting for a project down the road.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-05-2018, 09:58 AM
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Maybe switch to BOE's stainless steel pistons.

Richard 2006 Elise
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-06-2018, 04:27 AM
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Agree with the others, the calipers are easy to rebuild and should fix your problem. As far as the tape you mentioned, they're anti-rattle buffers and are available here: https://www.eliseparts.com/products/...brake-buffers/
I'm new to Elises but I'm sure they're available elsewhere too.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-30-2019, 12:18 PM Thread Starter
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Recently I felt like there was some dragging on the front brakes. I tried to clean up the front calipers the best I could but that didn't help. After a while I let the dealer give it a shot.

They cleaned up the front brakes nicely and there is no rubbing any more. I've removed most if not all of those pads ("Anti Rattle Brake Pad buffers").

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