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chrisp 03-15-2004 05:11 AM

What size flare wrenches should I own?
I am going to replace my rear soft lines before engine/trans goes back in just in case I have a problem with the hard line that requires replacement/fixing.

I do not own flare wrenches. Crafstman sells a few different sets and I want to make sure I buy what I need to service the front and rear lines.

I suspect I will need two wrenches, one to hold the hard and one on the soft. Are they different sizes?

AFJuvat 03-15-2004 05:29 AM

yes, they are different sizes.

If you get teh craftsman set that covers between 8 and 19 mm you should be fine.


jazzbass 03-15-2004 05:33 AM

I don't remember the sizes of the top of my head, but 11mm seems to come to mind for the flare fitting on the hard line. Like AFJuvat said, just but the set and you'll be fine - I think its like $20. You don't need (and can't use, IIRC) a flare wrench on the rubber line - just a std open-end wrench is fine. The flare wrench is only needed for the hard lines.

911SCfanatic 03-15-2004 05:39 AM

Get them all like AFJuvat says. Once you buy two wrenches, you've spent as much as an entire set.

chrisp 03-15-2004 05:43 AM

The main reason I was asking is that I didn't want to buy a set with an 11/12 combo for example and need both sizes at the same time!

I appreciate the help. Also I don't have my car with me and was going to buy the wrenches and then visit the car to replace the lines.

Zeke 03-15-2004 06:40 AM

I've not needed the 10/11mm combo AND another 10 or 11mm at the same time on a 914 or a 911. The fitting that the nut goes into will have a 17mm hex on it. Like he says, an open end wrench is fine for somethng so large. Buy the set if you like, it can't hurtb , one is all you need, IMO.

Schrup 03-15-2004 07:08 AM

I bought a set of Husky flare wrenches & it didn't come with a 11mm, so I had to go to Sears. Seems to me 11mm is the only size you really need, I used a stubby 14mm as my back up.

sundaypunch 03-15-2004 08:47 AM

I just did this repair. You need an 11mm flare for the hard lines. Not necessary to use a flare for the soft lines. Your best bet is to cut the soft line in the middle. You can then spin it off the hard lines without turning the hard line fittings (which may very well be frozen). No biggie if you break the hardline between the soft line and caliper, these are only $11 or so each at Pelican. Make sure you don't mess up the hard line that goes into the body. This wouldn't be fun to replace.

vash 03-15-2004 09:05 AM

just buy the $49 dollar kit from sears. it will have you covered.

chrisp 03-15-2004 10:06 AM

I had seen this mentioned once before but I don't fully comprehend. Hoes does cutting the soft line allow you to twist it off without a wrench on the hard end? Maybe if I had the parts in front of me I would understand.

vash 03-15-2004 10:13 AM

chrisp, when you do it. you will understand. but basically, in a perfect non corrosive world, you would hold the rubber line steady, and turn the fitting that is designed to spin on the hardline. so when everything freezes tight. you cut the softrubber line ( the chances of both ends of the rubber line seizing is slim IMHO, so if one side is seized, try to disconnect the other end first) so you can spin the rubber line while the hard line is allowed to hold steady. i would still put a flare nut wrench on the hardline to make damn sure it doesnt spin.


chrisp 03-15-2004 10:29 AM

I get it now. You are cutting the soft line so the hose can spin while you are turning the nut on the soft line. Otherwise it would want to spin back closed once you take the wrench off.

So you still need all of the wrenches it's just that you are saving from having to turn the fitting on the hard line end....which requires less nut damaging torque then just holding it in place.

I thought you guys were suggesting that cutting the soft line saved you from needing one of the wrenches..possibly the flare wrench.


jazzbass 03-15-2004 12:12 PM

No - you will need the flare wrench. But just one on the hard line. When I replaced my soft lines, all 8 of the flares were frozen to the lines. I destroyed two hard brake lines (the ones connected to the calipers, thankfully) before I figured out the "cut the rubber line" method. (Yeah, slow learner, I know...).

So, the process is (if the flares are frozen to the hard lines):
1. Cut the rubber line in half
2. Put 11 mm flare nut wrench on hard line, hold still
3. Put (I think) 17mm open end wrench on rubber line, twist off.
4. Repeat for all 8 connections (for 4 brake lines)

Now, you'll need to un-freeze the flares to get the new hoses back on. Really, you only need to free up the flares on the small hard lines that connect to the calipers.

5. Remove small hard lines from calipers.
6. Clean lines
7. Use torch to loosen flare nuts
8. Replace hard lines on calipers
9. Screw soft lines onto hard lines on the car. Do this by holding the (frozen) 11mm flare nut on the car steady while spinning the rubber line on with the 17mm open end wrench.
10. Screw the flare from the small hard line into the rubber lines

Good luck. Its easy if you know the secret. If not, you get the buy new hard lines for all 4 calipers (ask me how I know...)

chrisp 03-15-2004 12:20 PM

Awesome tips. Thanks.

ChrisBennet 03-15-2004 12:42 PM

From memory (and we all know what my memory is like :rolleyes: ), these are the ones I tend to use on my '86 911:
10mm: for metric brake lines from the autoparts store
11mm: for factory brake lines
12mm: for cam oil lines
14mm: for cam oil lines

I have only have a 3 wrench set. You don't really need flare wrenches for the cam lines.

Joe Bob 03-15-2004 02:34 PM

Just looked at a set at tool store....the flare set had all BUT the 11mm. That's dumb....Sears had the complete set for less than the cost of two single wrenches....

Randy Webb 03-15-2004 03:07 PM

I swear I recall needing a 15 mm for some brake lines on my '73 911.

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