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He "Cleaned Up" His Own Brake Rotors
“I recently cleaned up the rotors on the disc brakes on my 1978 Ford F-150 4-WD pickup. I used a 4 1/2-in. angle grinder and a belt sander without removing the rotors from the wheels,” says Ken Burtard, Theresa, Wis.
  Burtard uses the pickup for plowing snow and other odd jobs around his farm, and says he usually drives slowly. However, after time the brake rotors get very rusty.
  “Under slow driving conditions, drum brakes can go for several years without getting too rusty, but not disc brakes. The rust that forms is very abrasive and will eventually wear out the brake pads,” says Burtard.
  He jacks up the front end and then unlocks the hub on each wheel so the rotors are free to spin. He also removes the brake caliper and brake pads so he can get at both sides of each rotor.
  “Spinning the rotor fast makes it easier to grind or sand uniformly all the way around the rotor, without grinding too much metal off one spot,” says Burtard. “I’ve found that with some assistance, a belt sander or angle grinder usually has enough traction to get the rotors spinning. I use the angle grinder first to remove most of the rust and then finish up with the belt sander.”
  “As I work I turn the vehicle’s steering wheel as needed so I can access both sides of the rotor. Once the rotor begins to spin, I adjust the angle of the sander or grinder so that it’s always working against the grain of the metal. I always use safety glasses, and I wear a damp wash towel around my head in order to keep dust out of my nose and eyes.”
  Burtard says that after he’s done grinding and/or sanding the rotors, he puts some oil on them to help keep them from rusting as quickly.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Kenneth Burtard, W660 Co. Rd. DD, Theresa, Wis. 53091 (ph 920 251-2726; kenburtard@icloud.com).    

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2017 - Volume #41, Issue #4