PDA

View Full Version : Which brake fluid for 2006 Sprinter 3500?


outwestbound
06-01-2018, 08:39 PM
I know there is a long thread, but honestly, I get confused following the technical discussions.

On the high performance end, it appears the fluids are USE specific. So first, I don't care about cost for brake fluid or changing brake fluid.

Here's my use:
My vehicle will be loaded to it's GVWR of 10,200 pounds. Brutal mountain descending on a 12-14 month trip in South America. I'll encounter some 10-25 degrees F weather crossing over the Andes, for example, but cold weather will be rare. Mostly, temps will be comfortable for a human. My Sprinter is a dual rear wheel 3,500 Winnebago Itaska Navion 23J.

Issue is BIG, LONG, STEEP mountain descents down windy roads. Overheating of the brakes is a BIG issue.

FLUID: Castrol SRF seems to have the highest boiling points dry/wet at 590F/518F, and this meets FMVSS 116 and ISO 4925, but evidently, does not meet Mercedes's max viscosity spec of 1,500 mm2/s (I think). Should I use Castrol SRF anyway? Or, should I use a "super" DOT 4, like Pentosin Super DOT 4, Bremsflussigkeit TYP200, or MB OE stuff?

PADS: I've read that ceramic pads provide greatest braking on a hot disc (that's already hot), whereas semi-metallic fade more once already hot. But, the semi-metallic will throw off heat better until they are too hot (so they are a better conductor and thus pull heat off of the rotors better during the heat build up process). My biggest concern is heat build up over these long descents. If some brake fade is the worse case using semi-metallic, but there is less of a chance of boiling my brakes, I'm leaning towards semi-metallic.


Thoughts? (PS: sorry if this is repetitious)

NelsonSprinter
06-03-2018, 06:05 AM
I've descended mountains 3800ft in a Sprinter without using the brakes, and apparently without using any fuel, but maybe they don't have 7% grades in SA :idunno:

lindenengineering
06-03-2018, 11:59 AM
I know there is a long thread, but honestly, I get confused following the technical discussions.

On the high performance end, it appears the fluids are USE specific. So first, I don't care about cost for brake fluid or changing brake fluid.

Here's my use:
My vehicle will be loaded to it's GVWR of 10,200 pounds. Brutal mountain descending on a 12-14 month trip in South America. I'll encounter some 10-25 degrees F weather crossing over the Andes, for example, but cold weather will be rare. Mostly, temps will be comfortable for a human. My Sprinter is a dual rear wheel 3,500 Winnebago Itaska Navion 23J.

Issue is BIG, LONG, STEEP mountain descents down windy roads. Overheating of the brakes is a BIG issue.

FLUID: Castrol SRF seems to have the highest boiling points dry/wet at 590F/518F, and this meets FMVSS 116 and ISO 4925, but evidently, does not meet Mercedes's max viscosity spec of 1,500 mm2/s (I think). Should I use Castrol SRF anyway? Or, should I use a "super" DOT 4, like Pentosin Super DOT 4, Bremsflussigkeit TYP200, or MB OE stuff?

PADS: I've read that ceramic pads provide greatest braking on a hot disc (that's already hot), whereas semi-metallic fade more once already hot. But, the semi-metallic will throw off heat better until they are too hot (so they are a better conductor and thus pull heat off of the rotors better during the heat build up process). My biggest concern is heat build up over these long descents. If some brake fade is the worse case using semi-metallic, but there is less of a chance of boiling my brakes, I'm leaning towards semi-metallic.


Thoughts? (PS: sorry if this is repetitious)

Use MB DOT 4 plus 1--cheap and cheerful from any MB dealer.
Works well even on "lowly US" use grades in Colorado!:laughing:
(Some really can give you a pucker factor! )
Dennis
P.S I cant recall any highway in South America that has the combined traffic speed and brutal decent for any vehicle let alone a big rig loaded to "40,000 gross" on I/70, down from the Eisenhower tunnel at about 10,500 ft to Silverthorne in the valley below.
Dennis

outwestbound
06-03-2018, 12:21 PM
I've descended mountains 3800ft in a Sprinter without using the brakes, and apparently without using any fuel, but maybe they don't have 7% grades in SA :idunno:

The lower 48 USA isn't comparable. 10,000 foot descents are common. A buddy of mine in his 2006 Itasca Navion (Sprinter 3500) was in Guatemala and, even in 1st gear, he had to brake hard (to the point of boiling his fluid) to keep from blowing the engine.

Yes, even in Colorado, the lower 48 in the US are small compared to SA, especially Colombia, Ecuador and Peru.

outwestbound
06-03-2018, 12:33 PM
Use MB DOT 4 plus 1--cheap and cheerful from any MB dealer.
Works well even on "lowly US" use grades in Colorado!:laughing:
(Some really can give you a pucker factor! )
Dennis
P.S I cant recall any highway in South America that has the combined traffic speed and brutal decent for any vehicle let alone a big rig loaded to "40,000 gross" on I/70, down from the Eisenhower tunnel at about 10,500 ft to Silverthorne in the valley below.
Dennis


Dennis. Thanks so much! My info on the topo difficulties is anecdotal, but there are plenty of folks chiming in on the issue on the FB groups I'm following. It's brutal down there, and I prefer not to follow the coast as some recommend, because that route is ver hot, as apposed to staying up at elevation.

I'm researching parts to do a complete brake & bearing overhaul; sensors, bearings, seals, rotors, calipers, pads and the sensors and tone rings, hoses, etc.

As a general rule, I've found a high level of incompetence among mechanics on the T1N Sprinter - I've had some bad outcomes from some who claim competence, then screw it up. But mostly, I've had great outcomes from those who really know these older T1Ns. Is this brake work so specialized on the T1N that I should consider coming to Golden from Tampa, FL for your shop to do this work? The timing would be around mid September and I'd just get a hotel while it was in your shop. The drive is long, but actually, this trip could represent the only real test trail of this vehicle since I did all kinds of work/ mods to it, so it might make sense: just a thought. Or, I could go to a home in North Carolina to test it out in the mountains.

Also, and setting the cost issue aside for a moment, do these "groves, slotted or drilled" rotors improve heat dissipation materially, or is this just marketing BS? If yes, do you have a recommendation for the front end of my 2006 Dodge Sprinter 3500?

I have time and opportunity, so I figure I should make an effort to get this brake work done to accommodate my trip, especially in terms of product specs.

Thanks,

John

Midwestdrifter
06-03-2018, 07:50 PM
Sprinter brakes are basic standard disc systems.

Make sure your parking brake holds well btw, parking pawl failures do sometimes happen.

outwestbound
06-03-2018, 10:46 PM
Sprinter brakes are basic standard disc systems.

Make sure your parking brake holds well btw, parking pawl failures do sometimes happen.

Thanks. I've been reading your build and battery threads for hours. What an adventure! I think I'll do South America first, then Europe. But this Itaska Navion is really an ice cream truck or maybe a 10,000 pound marshmallow. It's a gross overload for the Sprinter, so I think I'll get something more durable for Australia and NZ, like a van.

PS: I'm replacing the parking break pads. Thanks

Midwestdrifter
06-03-2018, 11:28 PM
Thanks. I've been reading your build and battery threads for hours. What an adventure! I think I'll do South America first, then Europe. But this Itaska Navion is really an ice cream truck or maybe a 10,000 pound marshmallow. It's a gross overload for the Sprinter, so I think I'll get something more durable for Australia and NZ, like a van.

PS: I'm replacing the parking break pads. Thanks


No need to replace the parking brake pads unless they are worn (unusual) or they don't hold well enough for hills.

I don't honestly think your vehicle is overloaded. Fully loaded? Yes. But not excessive. You need to take some care as to not put too much stress on the TC, but the driveline and suspension is durable.

Is it big? Absolutely, but that's the price you pay for living space! The medium commercial truck platforms (fuso etc) are definitely more durable, but they are rough to drive, very thirsty, and have poor crash safety.

Drive slow, learn the vehicles limits, and pay attention to its performance. :thumbup: