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110 brake problems

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1990 110 CSW 2.5TD (yes I know)

so on the back of changing the rear pads, I bled the system and went round the block....the brakes had been spongy before and a blocked rear axle breather had seen a leak into the rear offside drum seeing to the last set of pads so I was expecting an improvement but as I stepped on the brakes, the pedal went 3/4 down and the brake light came on on the dash, the landy stopped well enough but I needed more force than with one oily rear drum! I am guessing the PDWA switch activated and showed an imbalance, this is the first time this has shown in the two years or so I have had the truck

I tapped the pedal, light went out and I rolled off again, I stopped more gently and pressed the pedal, it still went 3/4 down but no light and the landy stopped. I did this again and pumped the pedal twice as I slowed, more pressure in the pedal and firmer feeling but as soon as I tried to stop again, no pressure and back to pedal 3/4 down. I have bled the system a second time, no obvious leaking signs in the drums or front pads, what am I doing wrong? If I brake gently/normally the brakes are acceptable but with more travel than I would like and if I brake then pump the pedal again during braking, I get a firmer brake and it feels like it should.

The oil in the master cylinder reservoir is dark and black looking, despite two litres of fresh fluid going through, I have exhausted the vacuum with the ignition off and the pedal depresses when the ignition turns on so I assume the vacuum is good but with the ignition off, when I press smartly on the brakes, I hear a wheeze (2-3 seconds)as if air is being expelled.

with the GUNSON pressure bleed kit attached and the engine running, I had more pressure on the pedal and no light if I stamped on the brake, remove the kit and put the regular cap on and little pedal pressure and warning lights, could this be master cylinder????

Any advice is gratefully received, I have scratched my head on this one, I have ordered a new master cylinder and seal kit but hope that it is simply something foolish I haven't done. All the wheels seem sound on their bearings and I haven't touched the front discs, only the rear shoes, and I haven't changed anything other than bleeding the brakes and then stamping on the pedal!

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Yep, rear drums and shoes and front discs and pads. I will have the drums off and check the cylinders at the weekend to see if I am losing fluid and I will check the snail adjusters again but I am scratching my head with this. It is a big change to the brake feel if all I did was change the shoes t the back and then just stamp on the brakes. I saw another thread which suggested that the rear cylinders might have to travel too far if poorly adjusted, do you think this might be the case? When I put the drums back on, I tightened the snails till the drum stopped then backed them off slightly, so I thought this was okay.....

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Nige, thank you for your common sense....it must be a right of passage when owning a land rover to feel a bit foolish from time to time.

I had adjusted the brakes but the wrong way and NOT CHECKED them, I was racing along and trying to get the job done quick time. Snails now adjusted THE CORRECT WAY and the pedal feels like it did before I got all "overalls and mug of tea". That said, the pedal still feels a bit mushy so I suspect a weep from the cylinders and will check them this weekend. Still, I can stamp on the brakes and no warning light and the 110 stops like it should. Best bit of advice I can give is be systematic and use hose clamps to isolate the fault.

Now, any advice on six year old daughters who insist I should paint the 110 pink?

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