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MG Midget and Sprite Technical - Copper Brake Pipes for Midget

There seem to be a number of copper brake pipe kits out there. Has anyone had good/bad experiences with particular suppliers? As you'll assume I'm about to fit new brakes onto a bare shell, any tips advice for fitment of the new copper. Thanks Si.
Simon Ricketts

Copper can get tired by vibration (not uncommon in a car) and will break sooner or later. Cunifer Copper Nickel Fer=Iron is stronger tougher than Iron or copper and there is no corrosion.

Flip Brühl 948 frog 59

Can recommend Automec.

don't get sidetracked into a circular argument about materials spec; I don't believe any supplier is selling potentially dangerous or short life brake pipes. I used Automec on the race car 6 years ago - no problems to date.
David Smith

Hi, Simon

For what its worth, the ones I used were also "Automec" from Moss. They've been on the car for about 8 years now and with no problems at all. I think that's pretty good recommendation.

Peter B

Automec kits fit very well - used them on B and midget.

They list copper and cunifer on the web site - I've only seen and fitted copper - with no problems to date.

Use cunifer on the boats diesel pipes as it is better for resisting salt.

If you are not racing, why not use silicon brake fluid as well - I've never had a problem with it - although some do not like it ! - but it lasts for ever, non flamable and does not eat paintwork - just my opinion.

richard boobier

I have used Automec on my Midget for about 10 years now, with no problems. They are correctly supported of course, to eliminate vibration damage.

Dave Barrow

You've confirmed my thoughts. I'm not racing and will go for Silicon fluid. Thanks all for your input.

Simon Ricketts

here's how I did mine:,1318708,page=1

I used cunifer pipe, as Flip and Richard mention using (better for vibration, burst strength and corrosion, and the cost difference was relatively small).

To do an entire shell (brakes, fuel, clutch), there was no kit offered in the US that would cover all of that, so I bought the material in bulk and made my own.

In the case of a US car, the vapor recovery lines also enter into it, adding to my reason to make them myself.

Once you have rented a good flaring tool, and have either bought or rented bending tool(s) (see my link), they are very easy to make yourself, and having that flaring tool in hand allows you a "do over" in case of a mistake.

In any case (kit, or bulk), you have to bend them all yourself, which is easy, if you kept the old pipes as a pattern for each one.

Hope this is helpful, please don't hesitate to ask if you've any additional questions,
Norm Kerr

I put Automec on my frogeye back in 1985 and in 12 years of use on the road no problems.
David Billington

Another vote for Automec and silicone fluid.

I've used both in my racecar for almost 10 years.

The Automec are easy to work with and all the right lengths. I don't know if the suppliers are different in the UK, but I found that when I bought the kit there was no opportunity for mistakes. I couldn't buy just one of the pipes. That's the only downside I found.
David Littlefield

I've used automec copper and on my MkIII Midget they have been fitted for 18 years without a problem. I also use silicon despite some not liking it. To be honest, having spent a great deal of time and money on restoring my cars, I didn't want minral brake fluid leaking from the master cylinder and spoling the paintwork. Fussy, I know. I would suggest that you buy your self one of the pipe benders sold for these size pipes as they allow you to make some really neat bends without fear of having kinks in the pipework. They aren't expensive.

I used cunifer (I think that it is only 10% copper but I am not sure). I really liked that stuff. You can bend it with your hands.


R Harvey

I've been supplied with a single brake pipe by Automec - and received excellent customer service from them. The pipe was for a Discovery and turned out to have the wrong union on one end - but I couldn't really blame them as the parts manuals are not ideally clear.

Anyway, they sent me another pipe FOC and without murmur even though I couldn't return the first one to them as I'd tried to fit it before realising. Who'd have thought Land Rover was still using Imperial-threaded brake unions in 1993??

Incidentally, my Midget has had silicone fluid in it for many years, but I'm in the process of changing it back to mineral, as I've never really got on with the 'wooden' feel of the brakes.

Tom Coulthard

When I got my Midget it had silicone. I changed it back to the ester based fluid (dot 4 right now).
R Harvey

Automec, silicone, stainless steel braided hoses and a decent servo and you're sorted!

Jeremy 3

if the brakes are in well-maintained order there is absolutely no need for a servo on a Spridget.
David Smith

Well that is of course in David's opinion.

My servo was a great improvement, now the feel of the brakes is far more sensitive and when I get into my everyday car I do not put the passengers through the front window!!

Regarding Brake pipes who else sells copper brake line kits apart from Automec? so they are my favourite LOL

Copper pipes that I have seen have never split due to vibration but equally the Kunifer pipes are very good. The only issue with Cunifer is that it is difficult to flare using a cheap tool. If you want to use Cunifer pipe the buy a decent tool to flare the ends.
Robert (Bob) Midget Turbo


after a total rebuild I ran without and then with a servo and much prefer the pedal feel with the servo. Each to their own.

Jeremy 3

Why on earth would anyone want to fit a servo onto a Midget...? You just loose the 'feel' of the brakes. A servo will NOT improve your brakes in any way, it just assists you leg.

Simon. Cunifer is excellent, Automec appears to be liked here... Personaly I would steer WELL clear of silicone brake fluid and stick to standard DOT3.

Make sure your brakes are in good working order and you use good quality pads and linings (and by good quality I DON'T mean green stuff). Try Mintex 1144, you'll never look back.


Oh... Good to see you on here again John, sorry about the news. :-(
M T Boldry

Mark how does not having a servo improve the feel of the brakes?

With a servo you have much more feel of the brake pedal and you can regulate the pressure applied much more easily thus improving the feel

Why are servos fitted to modern (every) cars if they are useless?
Robert (Bob) Midget Turbo

it's childishly simple Bob - lack of servo means less between foot and brake disc/drum, therefore more feel. Every connection, pivot, device, linkage etc etc will add some form of damping effect.
Why do modern cars have them? One obvious reason, they are marketed at the lowest common denominator, the diminutive female driver.
David Smith

I'm with Mark on this. I had an MGB without servo and the brakes were wonderful, with a firm pedal and a nice progressive action. Drive an MGB with a servo and it is a different matter. The pedal has more free play and the action feels spongy by comparison. A light car like a Midget certainly does not need a servo IMO, just as it doesn't need power steering.

Every modern car has a servo because (a) the cars are all so damned heavy being chock full of safety aids, and (b) drivers expect to have really light controls these days. As Mark said, the fitting of a servo does not make the brakes even one percent more effective, it just makes them lighter to use, and on the Midget they are perfectly weighted already.

But hey, if you like a servo, that's fine - its your car, but for me I like to reduce the number of things that can go wrong! Quite a few MGB owners have had brown trouser moments because the remote servo can fail internally with no sign except for sudden and total loss of brakes. The type commonly used in today's cars has no fluid in it and so failure is not so dramatic.
Mike Howlett

Robert (Bob) Midget Turbo

glad you are amused...
David Smith

Thanks for the comprehensive description Mike.

Bob, I like the 'feel' of the Spridget's brakes without a servo, and I know that in correct working condition, the brakes are very good...!

And I still stand by what I wrote above :-)

What pads are you using Bob...?

M T Boldry

Yep Mark I am using harri cakko pads admittedly but equally locking up the wheels is not a big deal. However with the servo fitted I have a lot of progression under hard braking and so a lot of control. Pre servo having to push hard I felt lost me this progression and so control was not as precise.
Under normal braking the servo gives very little benefit to feel.
Bob Turbo Midget England

This thread was discussed between 07/01/2011 and 10/01/2011

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