Brakes - Chevy 30 van chassis

Hi folks, New to this group, but have participated in other NGs over the years.
I have inherited a 1992 Shasta Class C motorhome that sits on a Chevy 30
1-ton van dual rear chassis, about 50K miles on it and it was used a few times each year. Almost everything is original, even the tires. My question to you folks here is about the front disc brakes (Bendix).
Looking at the pads they were a bit crumbly and it pulled to the left. Rotors in good shape. Initial diagnosis was to put new pads on and give it a bleeding. No problem there until I tried to put on the left side caliper back on. The final step is to tap the support key and the M-shaped spring back into their slot between the knuckle and the bottom of the caliper. My trouble is that there is not enough room to even get them started in there. I had to pound it pretty hard to get them both to move out in disassembly. *** Question #1: is there any trick to this? I am thinking that there might be some kind of positioning trick perhaps.
So at that point I move to the other side. I find that the piston will not be pushed all the way down into the caliper (remember - pulled left so this side was not braking as much). I could take it apart or just replace both calipers for not a lot of $$. So I am just replacing these calipers on both sides. Dunno if this will help my fit problem above or not. Might.
The thing is that these calipers are pretty rusty on the outside, and so it the knuckle. Where they slide against each other at the top of the caliper is not a nice smooth surface anymore. The new caliper will take care of half of this situation. I am thinking that I ought to file the pitted knuckle sliding face smooth again. [The key/spring on the bottom is fine so the bottom is not at issue with a new caliper and brake lubricant.] *** Question #2: Good idea or bad idea and why?
Thanks, Tomes
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Take the calipers right off and clean them up good. You may be able to purchase a re-build kit for them and that might be quite advisable. Clean up the sliding surfaces and make sure the piston will move freely, all the way in and out. Throw 'em back on and take that baby out for a test drive.
--

-Mike-
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