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Discussion Starter #1
Greetings All,

This will be my first foray digging into the brakes on my '68 and just wanted some basic advice before I go someplace that my experience with Harley brakes won't help me.

My brake pedal is significantly higher than my gas pedal - and I was wondering if that it was easily adjustable before I looked into getting the pedal arm cut and re-welded or otherwise modified in some significant way.

Thanks for any advice - Jon651
 

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The problem is that the pedal pivots are not adjustable. Your gas pedal has to be set so that it hits the floor at WOT. If you shorten the actuating rod for the brake pedal you can lower the pedal a bit, but you can only go so far before your brake lights activate.
 

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"My brake pedal is significantly higher than my gas pedal"


I'm guessing you have drum brakes up front and maybe no power booster. My '68 has the original power brakes with discs front and drums rear. The brake pedal is very close to the floor and close to the same height as the gas pedal. It actually looks odd because the brake pedal is so much lower than the clutch pedal.
 

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"My brake pedal is significantly higher than my gas pedal"


I'm guessing you have drum brakes up front and maybe no power booster. My '68 has the original power brakes with discs front and drums rear. The brake pedal is very close to the floor and close to the same height as the gas pedal. It actually looks odd because the brake pedal is so much lower than the clutch pedal.
Actually it has disc brakes up front and the OEM vacuum booster. I didn't consider the brake light switch but I haven't given up hope just yet. Maybe I could rotate the entire assembly forward to lower the pedal height or there is an aftermarket pedal arm that is available. I will admit that cutting and re-welding the current pedal arm is pretty low on my list of things I want to do...

Thanks for the input.
 

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Manual brake cars have a 6:1 pedal ratio, power brake cars have a 3:1 ratio. You could move the pedal closer to the floor by adding a booster and there fore being able to change the pedal ratio to 3:1.. Changing to the 3:1 ratio with manual brakes would make them impossible to operate and very dangerous..
 

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"Actually it has disc brakes up front and the OEM vacuum booster"


Does your EC have an auto or standard trans? You may not have the right pedal assembly. My EC has the original M21 Muncie 4spd. I just went and checked my brake pedal and it's higher than I remembered but it still much lower than the clutch pedal. I have removed the gas pedal so I couldn't compare the brake pedal height to the gas pedal but I don't remember there being much difference. People used to ask me why my brake pedal was so low. The only EC I've ever seen that had a noticeably high brake pedal had an auto trans, drum brakes and no power booster. It looked weird.
 

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"Actually it has disc brakes up front and the OEM vacuum booster"


Does your EC have an auto or standard trans? You may not have the right pedal assembly. My EC has the original M21 Muncie 4spd. I just went and checked my brake pedal and it's higher than I remembered but it still much lower than the clutch pedal. I have removed the gas pedal so I couldn't compare the brake pedal height to the gas pedal but I don't remember there being much difference. People used to ask me why my brake pedal was so low. The only EC I've ever seen that had a noticeably high brake pedal had an auto trans, drum brakes and no power booster. It looked weird.
Sorry but my el Camino does not have the original drive train. I now have an LT1 350 from a '95 Camaro donor with (I believe) a 700R4 tranny, but I don't know what the original power plant was. I do have OEM front disc and rear drum brakes and a vacuum booster. Unfortunately I have no way of knowing what parts are original and what have been transplanted.

I'm not saying that my elky is impossible to drive as this issue is more of a personal preference than anything else. I get used to the pedal height difference in about 5 minutes but I just wanted to bring it closer to the levels of my current Silverado daily driver so the initial transition is not so 'abrupt'.
 

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"I'm not saying that my elky is impossible to drive as this issue is more of a personal preference than anything else."


I wouldn't like it either. To me it's kind of a safety issue also. It reminds of my first hot rod which was a '56 Chevy that I converted from powerglide to standard transmission when I pulled the engine to modify it. It had horrible non power drum brakes and a real high brake pedal. It got kind of exciting sometimes getting slowed down at the end of the quarter mile. I checked out my daily driver which is a Dodge diesel with a 6 spd manual trans and the brake pedal is an in inch or two lower than the clutch pedal which isn't far from the gas pedal.
 

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"Make sure your master cylinder rod is connected to the lower hole of the brake pedal."


Thanks for this information! I need to get the assembly instruction manuals for my '68 EC. I have the GM overhaul manual and GM service manual. My service manual shows the master cylinder rod going into the top hole which is incorrect. The top hole is for the brake light switch bracket. The master cylinder push rod in my '68 EC is 5 1/2" long from the master cylinder firewall mounting bracket to the center of the clevis pin hole in the push rod. I think Jonathan's high pedal is probably caused by a push rod that's too long. Whoever installed the master cylinder probably didn't think to make sure the push rod was the correct length.
 

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Make sure your master cylinder rod is connected to the lower hole of the brake pedal. If so, your pedal is where it needs to be.
Thanks for the tip! That will be high on my list to check the next time I squeeze under the dash.
 

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The top hole is for manual brakes, bottom for power. This is what changes your pedal ratio and height.

The assembly manuals will default to a No Option basic vehicle. For power brakes you need to look at the UPC "J50" power brake page. The same info goes for all the options. So its not surprising to see different applications in the service manual. You just need to make sure you're looking at the right page.
 
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