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Post Info TOPIC: convertible top pump fluid...


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convertible top pump fluid...


The last time I had my convertible hydraulic pump apart was about 20 years ago.  It now appears to be in need of topping up the fluid.  I believe that I understand how to do this but I do have a question...  At the time I think I had used brake fluid.  I've now been told that I should use transmission fluid.  Any thoughts?  Can the two be mixed? 
Feedback is appreciated.
Thanks in advance...
gw

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Answer

Thanks for the info. My top doesn't always go down, but of course today when I took it to the dealership it worked. Where do I find the conv. motor? (I've only had the car a couple of months.) 98' Mustang

 

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Not sure if your motor is the same as mine ('71 Cutlass), but mine says the same thing: fill with Type A transmission fluid. Mine has a rubber plug on one end of the motor. All I have to do is pull that out (carefully so as not to tear it) and funnel in the fluid. After you fill it (until it runs out the hole) I would recommend running the top up and down a few times, then refill it. This should bleed out any air in the hydraulic lines. It's that easy for me...hopefully yours is the same. Oh, and I believe that Type A transmission fluid is equivalent to today's Dexron III or MERCON. Good luck!

 

 

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Filling the reservoir until fluid runs out is a disaster waiting to happen. The reservoir should be filled with the convertible top in the lowered position and the final level should be approximately 1/4 inch below the bottom of the fill hole. Here's why: The reservoir is a buffer. There is always fluid in the upper and lower portions of the lift cylinders. When the cylinder rod is fully retracted, the reservoir is at it's highest level. This is due to the cylinder rod displacing some of the fluid in the cylinder. When the rod is extended (top raised) the entire bottom of the cylinder fills and reservoir level wiil be at it's lowest point. Imagine what happens if you fill the reservoir while in this position, and especially if you fill it until fluid leaks out. Hmmm, lower the top, level rises until there is no more room in the reservoir (or air volume is compressed until pressure blows the oring seals out). At this point, pressure in the reservoir will be greater than 300psi. (these pumps dead head at about 300-350psi) This means the main oring seal will blow out and the fluid in the reservoir



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 When I did my Rag back in '95, I was told to use hydraulic fluid since it works by hydraulics, which I did. Although I am sure ATF should work as well

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Any thoughts re mixing trans fluid and brake fluid? Once I start if it looks like brake fluid, I'm thinking I should continue with brake fluid? (I just hate using that stuff around paint...)
thx

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Never heard of brake fluid in a conv top confuseconfuse but if it's been working for you all this time stay with it. Or drain the system and then put in ATF.

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Hi guys, some what new here had to re register, great to see a thread on convertible tops, any info on the tops as far as adjustment and motors ect, would be great, I have a 66 beaumont rag top, as a matter of fact its near identical to 03cts sport's car, colour and everything will post some pics.

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Welcome aboard! Pictures are always welcome, the more the better! If you haven't already, make sure you register your vehicle at:
http://canadianponcho.activeboard.com/forum.spark?aBID=118110&p=3&topicID=27761937


Re roof info, the book that I'm missing is the Body by Fischer manual which might have the info re adjustments. The other manuals show the parts I believe.

You'll like it here, as there is a wealth of knowledge...

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I wouldn't mix the brake fluid and transmission fluid.   I've only heard of using transmission fluid in the convertible top system.

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seventy2plus2 wrote:

I wouldn't mix the brake fluid and transmission fluid.   I've only heard of using transmission fluid in the convertible top system.



This this original post a while back, I removed some of the existing fluid that has been in there for eternity (and is still clean).  It was colorless, and not much thicker than water.  My belief is that it is indeed brake fluid.  As a result I added some more.  So far it is working like a charm.  (Whenever it is that I do the flush, I will likely use trans fluid.
thx for the feedback...

 



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I seriously doubt that fluid was brake fluid, should be hydraulic fluid, atf will work or power steering fluid, those will mix OK. Don't ever,ever mix brake fluid with anything else they are different bases.

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You've got me worried. Would hydraulic fluid be clear and thin?...

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I just bought a convertible top cylinder for my wife's Sebring. The instructions call for ATF (they void the warranty if anything else used) Some early cars (50's) may have used brake fluid.


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If it was me I would flush the brake fluid out asap.The glycerine in the brake fluid will turn the seals to mush.Even 10w oil is probably ok, but atf dextron is best. just my thoughts also here.

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I do remeber reading in my fisher body manual for 65, that it is indeed brake fluid used in the top hydraulic system, strange as it my seem.

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DANO65 wrote:

I do remeber reading in my fisher body manual for 65, that it is indeed brake fluid used in the top hydraulic system, strange as it my seem.



Funny you say that.  When I first took the car on a test drive (28 years ago) one of the first things I did was lower the top.  When it came to raising it, no luck.  (Which helped when negotiating the buying price.) 
After investigation I found that there was a massive leak in the hydraulic hose that had a Red Green type of repair.  Believe it or not, someone had attempted to do the repair by wrapping the hole with fiberglass resulting in a patch of material that looked like the mould of the inside of a clentched fist!  Needless to say the repair did not work. 
My solution was to find a section of hose along with some hydraulic fitting so as to splice in the replacement hose.  At the time, I'm thinking that I added to the existing brake fluid as per instructions in my Body by Fisher manual that I cannot find.  (Does anyone know if these instructions are in that manual?)
The good news is that in the past 28 years, other than replacing the dash switch, the hydraulic roof system has not required any repairs at all (other than the recent addition of enough brake fluid to raise the level to a 1/4" of the plug while the top was down, which now has me a little nervous.)
If anyone has a '66 Body Fisher manual that might provide some guidance, it would be appreciated!
thx

 



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03cts sport wrote:

The last time I had my convertible hydraulic pump apart was about 20 years ago.  It now appears to be in need of topping up the fluid.  I believe that I understand how to do this but I do have a question...  At the time I think I had used brake fluid.  I've now been told that I should use transmission fluid.  Any thoughts?  Can the two be mixed? 
Feedback is appreciated.
Thanks in advance...
gw



 Brake fluid is what would be in your pump. You can't mix ATF with brake fluid as the two will not mix. Replacement cylinders with new seals can use either fluid but all components must be new. 

  
 

 



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Early power windows and power seats used brake fluid for the hydraulics. Later 50's cars were updated to electric windows and seats.


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Catch up on your sleep tonight Geoff ... sleep.gif

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'64 Parisienne CS "barn find" - last on the road in '86 ... Owner Protection Plan booklet, original paint, original near-mint aqua interior, original aqua GM floor mats, original 283, factory posi, and original rust.

NOS


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we have been a dealer for Hydro-e-Lectric for several years and hopefully have retained some info.. Brake fluid was used in the early cars 40's, 50's and into the early 60's. Most cars built from mid 60's used tranny fluid . It is not recommended to mix the 2 fluids as seal failure can be the result. If you have brake fluid it is usually  best to flush the system & switch to tannny fluid. Also from previous info only fill the pump about 2/3 full. to allow for the fluids aready in the lines to drain back.
We do have a instruction sheet that we provide when replacing the pump, lines or cylinders Anyone wishing a copy let me know
As a note old brake fluid I am told can have a  oder  somewhat like sulpher?
Dale @ NOS

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Pontiacanada wrote:

Catch up on your sleep tonight Geoff ... sleep.gif



Ahhhhh!  For some reason I always felt it was brake fluid, then when I removed some, it somewhat reiterated that feeling.  Thanks for confirming that brake fluid was a possibility back in the day.  If it is, it seems to be doing the job.  If/when the time comes though that a flush is required, trans fluid will like win out.
Thanks for chiming in all! 
(Oh, does anyone know if the Body By Fisher book outline the process?)

 PS  Good to know about the sulpher smell.  I had written that off to my being middle aged in closed quaters (in the trunk)...



-- Edited by 03cts sport on Monday 30th of August 2010 07:37:19 PM

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03cts sport wrote:

Pontiacanada wrote:

Catch up on your sleep tonight Geoff ... sleep.gif



 PS  Good to know about the sulpher smell.  I had written that off to my being middle aged in closed quaters (in the trunk)...




Beano works wonders ...

 



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Pontiacanada wrote:




 

03cts sport wrote:




 


Pontiacanada wrote:




Catch up on your sleep tonight Geoff ... sleep.gif






 PS  Good to know about the sulpher smell.  I had written that off to my being middle aged in closed quaters (in the trunk)...






Beano works wonders ...


 

 





Thanks for the tip Darryl (but at this point I don't want to take any chances with mixing anything else in there except brake fluid. LOL)

 



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can you tell me if roof cylinders are rebuildable, and also I got a power top motor it looks identical to mine, it is out of a lebaron, any thoughts on using that it also had a cpl of selonoids or resistors with it, be sweet to get my power top working

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Beyond my scope of knowledge, but I'm sure someone will chime in...
(I do know that after market components are available...)

-- Edited by 03cts sport on Thursday 2nd of September 2010 07:06:25 PM

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NOS


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convertible top cylinders are a sealed unit & cannot be rebuilt. As far as using a LeBaron pump on your Beaumont; I don't know.
Dale @ NOS

 

 



-- Edited by NOS on Sunday 12th of August 2018 12:01:53 PM

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