Sparky's winter/spring/summer/autumn work


Staff member
Very nice! Any idea about the sag then bump in the torque plot?
Not sure, he was a bit hesitant with the throttle on the power run, so it could be that?

Well that ties up with the figures I got from the old blue meanie. I can tell you, you wont be disappointed with that, and are going to have a lot of fun :thumb:
He was always quick, but I did feel there was a little something missing. Now I know what it was :cool:

Fantastic results!
I must admit I didn't expect quite that much, very pleased.

Ah the difference did seem unusual but thought you’d maybe found an unusually good combination of parts!
Great numbers nonetheless :cool:
I really must proof read :)


Staff member
Sparky was in the way last week so I pushed him backwards a few feet. He usually pushes around smoothly but this time there was a terrible graunching noise from the back of the car, and was difficult to push. Quick check underneath, and nothing in the way but then I realised the handbrake was on :rolleyes:

So, how could I push him backwards with the handbrake on? :hmm:

Jacked the back end up today and had a look around, couldn't see much so held my mobile up where the handbrake calipers are and took this picture (Jag diff for anyone not aware)

Pad out.jpg

One of the pads was sitting on top of the caliper!

On closer inspection I found the friction material had sheared away from the backing plate on the inner one and had come out of the caliper. The backing plate had gone o_O

Also, the friction material had sheared away from the outer backing plate and had dropped down into the caliper.

pad out 2.jpg

When I rebuilt the rear brakes, I fitted new handbrake pads but the first ones I got, from a kit on ebay :oops: really didn't look very good. The glue was splashed all over the backing pad, and they just looked poor quality. I dropped one from the Black & Decker workbench I was using, not a particularly high device but the backing plate and friction material just popped apart.


I got some better ones from a local motor factor and fitted them instead. They are the ones that have failed. I have found the original pads, and strangely, they also failed, but I think i put that down to age.


Left hand ones were supplied with the rebuild kit, middle ones from the factor and right hand from the diff when I got it.

I could get to the outer nuts that hold the pads in, but not the inners so the handbrake mechanism had to come off. First one came off reasonably easily,

NS off.jpg

but the second one was too close to fuel outlet.

OS close to fuel.jpg

I managed to get a mobile up above it to get a picture,

OS top.jpg

After what seemed like ten rounds with Mick McManus, I finally got the pins undone but the outer one wasn't going anywhere, it hit the fuel outlet and therefore wouldn't release the handbrake mechanism.


After some head scratching, I worked out that I had three choices. 1/. Drop the diff (Needs two people or a lot of faffing), 2/. Removed the fuel outlet but that would mean draining the tank :confused: or 3/. Removing the O/S main caliper and dropping it slightly hoping the brake pipes would give a bit. They really are a nightmare to remove, even on the bench but it was the lesser of three evils, so I managed after around an hour and a half, to get it free.

I have managed to find some Ferodo pads fairly close by along with some new return springs and locking tabs, I reused the old ones last time as I couldn't find any. I don't fancy doing this job again, so am going to use a well known brand, and everything new.

I did assume that brake pads would need to be of a certain standard but maybe I did something wrong, who knows?


Well-Known Member
"I did assume..." There's what you did wrong! I've often assumed branded and consequently more expensive parts would be up to snuff, only to be let down in short order. Hope these pads last you a bit longer! Could you have perhaps lifted the petrol tank a little to provide enough room? Just a thought.


Staff member
Well that was more difficult than I hoped it would be :oops:

I got this lot from a very nice gentleman in Worksop who seemed to know everything there was to know about classic Jags, right down to the fact that the handbrake system was awful, badly designed and unreliable.

Ferodo stuff.jpg

I thought getting them out was difficult, but putting it back came up with a whole new bags of problems. I started with the nearside as looked easier and just slid the swinging arms into place and dropped the pins in to hold them.

Pads wrong.jpg

I thought that if I got it all lined up to start with, then I could just lift the pins out one by one and fit the brass return spring and locking tab. Luckily I took a pic and realised that I would have to remove it again to put the pads in the right was round :mad:. It came out a lot easier than the first time and weirdly went back in almost as easily. The first big problem now appeared, I could not get the springs to fit. I could get them onto the pins but the ends would not fit into the holes in the arms, or I could get them into the holes, but then the pins would not fit.

After watching a few 'how to' videos on yewtoob I found that they were fitted onto the caliper with the pins, tightened up and then the ends were tapped into place with a hammer and drift, or pliers. I can't do this as I cannot even see them when they are in situ, so no way can swing a hammer. After trying to get them to fit for far too many hours, I gave up and went home.

Fresh approach the following day, and I went through my 'bits of steel tube box and found a couple of bits of box section which made up the correct thickness and a couple of bits of plywood

Bits for jig.jpg

After glueing them together and drilling a few holes, I had a jig to hold everything in the correct place when adjusting the brass springs


This enabled me to bend them and tap them into place. The one on the left has been bent into shape, and the one on the right is as supplied.


Back together, pads in correctly, pins in and tight, brass return spring lined up and tightened, adjusted up correctly. I was told that you do up the adjusting screw until tight, then back off until you can get a 4 thou between the pads and disc. Now you can only turn the screw half as turn at a time and with the coarse thread that backs it off by 30 thou, so not quite sure how that works.

Pads not right.jpg

Everything appeared to be in the right place, but a quick picture showed a different situation. The inner pad, left one in picture, touched at the front but left a gap at the back :confused:. The only way this could happen is if the pin wasn't through the hole in swinging arm. So out it all came again.

If I ever have to do these again, the diff is coming out :)

The other side was even more difficult, but it's all back together now and working.

Sparky covered 220 miles over the weekend with all brakes working perfectly.


Staff member
Just a bit of maintenance today. At a show last week, the field was very rough and there was a bit of a clanging noise in the steering. It's been there for a while, but very quiet and just now again when I hit a bump or pothole on a corner.

The road to my work is a bit bumpy and what with the slight creak/clang becoming worse, it did show up a bit on this road.

I opened the O/S glove box and wiggled the steering to check the spline, bolt and UJ, all ok.

Wiggled the steering with the wheels on the ground, with and without the engine running, no noises and pretty much no play anywhere,

Then pushed the corners of the car up and down on the suspension, no noise and everything as it should be so open bonnet and check the nuts and bolts on the steering box and idler. Two of the idler bolts could be tightened slightly, but I didn't think it would be enough to make the noises, so quick test drive and noise still there.

Next, I jacked up the front end with the wheels off the ground and catching hold of the wheels, slowly moved them from lock to lock while looking at as many joints as I could. Everything seemed smooth and quiet so I got a crow bar and levered the wheels up and down, grabbed hold of the shocks and tried to move them, checked the split pins were in the inner holes etc - nothing.

Then I noticed this; -


The tell tale signs of red dust showing metal to metal rubbing. The front of the two bolts was a half turn or so loose, nothing much but enough, so a quick tighten and off for a test drive.

Noise gone, all back to normal.


Staff member
I did consider that, thinking there is a lot more strain on those bolts with the uprated anti roll bar, so maybe a little threadlock would help. I also considered using some bearing fit on the bar itself, but that meant removing the bar and cleaning it up, so I just tightened it.

It has been on there for 11 years it should be ok for another 11 :), and if not, out with glue.