The parking brake is an integral part of a whole-that whole being a braking system we had to completely replace on "The Bat's Mobile." Our '78 Stingray's brakes were labeled as a worse-case scenario, so we spent a recent issue giving everything the ol' heave-ho. With the brakes installed and bled and the Vette stopping on all fours (as opposed to two), this month we take a look at what went into installing an important (and overlooked by the last owner) piece of safety equipment. With the parking brake in the same condition as the rest of the parts we removed (which didn't include anything to stop the car once the handle was engaged), we were left with little choice but to replace everything. To do so, we had ordered Muskegon's Stainless Parking Brake kit at the beginning of the project.
With Muskegon's pieces ready to go in, we were ready to roll until the last of the original pieces, the parking brake handle, broke as well. Hey, we did say it was bad! With our rear covered (figuratively) by Muskegon, we took a peek at Keen Parts' catalog and ordered up a few things to finish the install. When their parking brake handle, pulley, equalizer, and associated hardware arrived, what had originally started out as a simple caliper and rotor replacement had become a complete, 100-percent, total rehab. Not what we had hoped for, but something that had to happen considering how this Vette had been treated by the last few owners. As with the previous install, this was completed down at Garry's Corvette Haven in Fullerton, California. Garry knows his stuff, as shown by how fast this install went. And besides, with a garage full of customer Vettes, he's got to be doing something right. So, follow along as we get a "handle" on the situation.