It was not until Scimjim and Robin (aka Martinclan) posted concerns about Copper brake and fuel lines, that I was made aware of the controversy surrounding pure copper brake lines.
I've started this new thread so as not to hijack Robert's Marlin Berlinetta's restoration thread.
Robin posted this comment....
Originally Posted by MartinClan
Just catching up with this thread :-)
Copper is generally frowned on for fuel lines (and brake lines) as it work hardens with vibration and then cracks. I believe thats the reason it is not accepted by the IVA testers. I used Kunifer for both brake and fuel lines. Its an alloy of copper and something and doesn't suffer so much from the work hardening issue.
So I've pulled out this issue in a separate thread to draw others attention to the issue.
It does seem to be a very controversial subject with some folks seriously falling out on some forums! Just try Googling "Copper brake lines illegal" and read some of the other forums debates on his subject. (I hope we will have a much more typical MAKC discussion
I used 'pure' Copper brake and fuel lines on my Marlin Sportster that was SVA'd in 2008 and passed with no comment about the use of Copper. Either the inspector didn't have an issue or maybe thought they looked like Kunifer due to the length of time it took to build the car
I have already discounted using Copper for the fuel lines due to the issues of Ethonal being added to petrol thanks to European legislation (but that's another can of worms...), but I was planning on using copper brake lines as copper is easier to flare than Kunifer. I have even recently bought a reel of the stuff from Halfords when I was in there the other week and saw it at a very reasonable price.
I remember that I bought the copper pipe for my Marlin from a company specialising in braking components called Automec, so I thought I'd take a look at their website and found that they sell both types of tubing...
...and seem to make the point that their copper pipe is " high quality thick walled copper tubing is manufactured in Great Britain and specifically designed for use with brake systems." (and it's over double the price of the Halfrauds stuff)
The Kunifer seems to be the preferred choice by the automotive industry.
But from my limited research it does seem that Copper pipe for brake systems is banned in some parts of Australia, New Zealand and possibly the USA?
I think for the price a reel of Kunifer I'll ditch the copper and use Kunifer, if nothing else but to avoid an unnecessary fail at the IVA test.
I hope this is of some interest to other forum users.....