problems bleeding new clutch circuit on '85

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Jul 11, 2011
San Francisco
problems bleeding new clutch circuit on '85. Please advise!

Hi all.

After far too long trying to figure out which master / slave combination is correct for my '85, with thanks to Joshua at MAF, i got it all in yesterday.

So, went to bleed it last night hoping for success, and didn't get it. I went through a quart of fluid using a Mity Vac on the slave, pumping with the pedal, etc., nothing. When the bleed valve is closed, there isn't the slightest bit of resistance in the clutch pedal.

Somewhere in my frustration last night, I remembered the concept of bench-bleeding new hydraulic components. :bang:

What I'm guessing is that I should have at least bench-bled the master, yes? Is it possible to bench-bleed it in the truck, and if so, what are some tricks on this?

Otherwise, are there any general tricks that you all would suggest to help me get this up and running?

Thanks in advance...

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So, I had a buddy that has done a lot of service work over last night to help me with this. Here’s what happened:

“bench-bled” the master while in the truck using a mity-vac – definitely got a lot of air out.

Reconnected system, checked for any signs of leakage – none. There is a brass coupler between the hard line and stainless line because that’s what I had to do to match up threads. Seems fine though.

Bled using mity-vac connected to the slave bleed. Still tons of air coming though, did not disperse throughout another quart of fluid.

Closed system up – no resistance in pedal at all.

Removed slave from mount, keeping stainless line on. Piston popped out, fluid sprayed all over me.

When slave piston is pushed in/ out manually, fluid rises and falls in master cyl reservoir. When done with bleeder open, fluid and air rises and falls in bleeder tube.

So, does any of this point to a suspect component? It seems like the master is not pushing any fluid through, since I have not seen any movement of slave from it.

If anyone can give me some advice on this, I would greatly appreciate it. I have to get this done (months ago) asap. And can’t keep banging my head against the wall trying to figure it out.

Can anyone help me out with this? Really need to get this done...

If you are in the San Francisco and can resolve this, I would be happy to pay you for your time...
Maybe try this...I have a 8-'85 60 and did this a few months ago w/no problems.

Just try gravity bleeding (I also have tried a Mity-Vac but gravity worked better). Open the bleeder valve just a bit, fluid should start dripping slowing. Keep the resv. topped off. Mine was done in 15 min. or so.

This was a new OEM slave & I rebuilt my master at the same time w/new OEM kit. Clutch slaves gravity bleed much better than brakes.

Thanks John, I'll give that a go.

Most of my experience with hydraulics is VWs with combined brake / clutch, using a power bleeder. Never have problems with that, but always something new to learn...


I have never bled using vacuum. Always using pressure. Either with a pressure bleeder attached to the master reservoir, or using speed bleeders or the old fashioned two person way. If your buddy is still around (or anyone else for that matter) I try the latter method. My guess is that you are sucking air in someplace.

I've had great success with speed bleeders for a one-man bleeding operation. $10/pair at summit racing. By three pair--for brakes and clutch. You will either have one left over (FJ60) or not (FJ62 w/ LSPV). Save the mighty vac for work that testing emissions components.

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