Gunners Garage

Check Those Brakes

Holy cow! It hit 60 degrees in Iola, Wisconsin today. That made it warm enough to drive my MG TD with the top down. 

Everytime mid-April rolls around and I take a car out for the first time, I think of an incident that happened some years ago when I rented an old, unheated garage to store my cars in. 

It was a warm day like this one, so I took a battery out to the garage and lifted the floorboards in my ’36 Pontiac.  Before long, I had the battery installed and a few cranks later the engine was spinning.  Excited about how easily the car started, I eased it out of the tight garage without touching the brake pedal.  Then I closed the garage door and took off down the road.  When I got to the stop sign at the next corner, I hit the brake pedal . . . and sailed right through the intersection!

The car had no brakes at all.  In fact, if another vehicle had been crossing the intersection, I doubt I’d be writing this blog today.  So by all means, get that old car of yours started and take it for a good springtime shakedown cruise.  But before you go out on the road, be sure to check the brakes!

(What’s the worst experience you had starting your old cars up in spring? I’d love to hear about it.  All you have to do is click “comments” below and send your story.)

Off To The Races

“Gunner”

2 thoughts on “Check Those Brakes

  1. Michael Fowler

    John,
    That can be a startling experience.
    My number one rule on ANY car without a double master cylinder is that I stand on the brake pedal BEFORE moving it. I have heard the hissss from a tiny hole in a metal line. Its a sound I do not like, but much better in my garage than while sailing thru a stop sign.
    Please check those brakes, and keep writing/ communicating with the hobbyists out here.

  2. Michael Fowler

    John,
    That can be a startling experience.
    My number one rule on ANY car without a double master cylinder is that I stand on the brake pedal BEFORE moving it. I have heard the hissss from a tiny hole in a metal line. Its a sound I do not like, but much better in my garage than while sailing thru a stop sign.
    Please check those brakes, and keep writing/ communicating with the hobbyists out here.

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