Long Brake Hoses for Your CJ
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By: Rick Boiros - 8/2000

Brake hose
The old hoses were stretched to the max. Notice how the frame rotates over the spring making the lines even shorter than it would at full equal droop.
Brake hose
The new hoses vs the old. The 79 Ford F150 hose, Raybestos BH36931, should fit 77-80 CJ's and it is about 20" long.
Brake hose
Rick ramps his '77 CJ-7 with the new brake hoses.
Brake hose
The new hose gives room to play. Also visible is in this picture is the reversal of stock frame brake line bracket and custom ubolt reversal.

When installing a suspension lift, among other things, proper front brake line rubber hose length and routing must be adressed. Lifts under 4" may not need changes, but the suspension should be fully cycled to check. A ramp is good for this. Lifting one corner exaggerates the problem since the frame tends to rotate over the axles.

There are different approaches to proper hose length. One approach is to use Stainless steel lines which are sold for $50+ per pair. They are still failure prone and some use odd threaded ends. A spare should be carried and care must be taken that a caliper is not dropped or supported by the line during maintenance.

Another approach is to reroute original equipment steel lines and brackets to get the most out of the rubber hoses. On CJ's it is common to flip the frame bracket end for end to move the hose closer to the caliper. New steel line or an extension line is necessary to make this modification

Yet another approach is to use rubber hoses from a different application. I have had success with Raybestos P/N BH36931 which is a 20" rubber hose on my CJ-7 with 1977-1980 style calipers.

Owners of later CJ's and YJ's should look into lines from a 1980 C-30 Chevrolet 4x4 pickup. I am told these lines are much longer than stock and bolt right up! I do not have this part number.

A final approach requires a bit more engineering, but offers good extension and protection of lines. The two front lines off the proportioning valve are combined into a brake tee to a rubber hose from a rear application. The hose goes to another tee mounted on the differential and steel line is then attached and run down each axle tube terminating with short rubber lines to the calipers.

While you are doing this, check the routing carefully for interference with shock absorbers, bump stops and particularly tire lugs. They will quickly wear through if they rub the tire sidewall.

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