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A reverse death wobble?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Dchaz, May 11, 2012.

  1. Dchaz
    Joined: Sep 6, 2009
    Posts: 481


    Just got a 27 touring car and I have a issue I need some help with.
    The details: boxed model a frame, spring on top 4" drop super bell axel, stock model a cross member, side steering, 40 ford drum brakes, 35 ford wire wheels with firestone deluxe tires.

    Driving it's fine, no wobble around town except when you hit the brakes. Then it shimmys bad. The drums where a little warped, turned them today. It got better but you can still feel it pulse and see a shimmy in the left front wheel. The weather has been crappy all week so I haven't been able to get it out on the freeway yet. I search death wobble and all I could find was a wobble at speed.

    Any ideas?
  2. 53chevyroc
    Joined: Sep 19, 2011
    Posts: 13

    from Nebraska

    Turn the drums/rotors and install new shoes/pads
  3. Keep chasing the brakes.
    There may be other issues too but your brakes should not pulse.
  4. Dchaz
    Joined: Sep 6, 2009
    Posts: 481


    I turned the drums and new shoes this afternoon. It feels like the front, and I can see the left front wheel shimmy when I hit the brakes. My wife went for a ride with me and said the right front was not shimmying. Could the shimmy be the in kingpin? I'm going to pull the rear drums off Sunday and check them but I think it's in the front.
    Oh I didnt feel the pulse till after the drums where turned.

  5. Do you have the spacer to run the '35 wires on the hydraulic drums? May or may not be part of the problem but you need them anyways.

    Charlie Stephens
  6. TexasSpeed
    Joined: Nov 2, 2009
    Posts: 4,618


  7. Dchaz
    Joined: Sep 6, 2009
    Posts: 481


    It has some crude looking home made ones on it. I am planing on ordering the ones from speedway when we get paid Tuesday. I forgot to add that I jacked one side up at a time and shook, pulled and pushed on everything and nothing was noticeably loose.
  8. Dchaz
    Joined: Sep 6, 2009
    Posts: 481


    I just looked at the link matt put up. The ones on it are not like those, the ones on it are around the wheel studs. They look like some home made spacers. It sucks doing this from my phone. I'm supposed to get the computer back from the shop hopefully Sunday so I can post some pictures
  9. 53chevyroc
    Joined: Sep 19, 2011
    Posts: 13

    from Nebraska

    make sure all rotating parts are balanced
  10. AJofHollywood
    Joined: Oct 3, 2008
    Posts: 640


    Get the wheels & tires balanced if you haven't already. ^^^^This guy know what I'm talking about.
  11. If the only time it acts up is when you apply the brakes ,,,,,,,

    Then there is an issue with the drum, shoes, or run-out. That really should be dead smooth. AND NO PULSATING.
    There could OR COULD NOT be some slop or other issues, they can be amplified because the brakes are having problems. Worn parts would give you problems and shimmys all the time.

    Swap the entire assembly left to right a.d see if the problem follows.
    Last edited: May 11, 2012
  12. Kerrynzl
    Joined: Jun 20, 2010
    Posts: 2,284


    Too much toe-out makes the car unstable under braking especially with negative camber [ crossplys are worse ] The tires could be bicycling on the inside shoulders which could be out of round

    Also check that the axle isn't going into negative caster under brake torque [get somebody to hold their foot on the brakes while you rock the car forward ]

    Now assuming you have checked the front end out [ everything is true, including drums and wheel / tire runout ]
    Go to the back of the vehicle and check for wheel run out [ out-of-round in particular ],if one wheel is out-of-round it will transfer the wobble through the chassis under braking.

    The height oscillations from out of round wheels get corrected by the caster of the front end [ similar to the steering pulling to one side if one rear tire is low on pressure ]
    I have experienced bad steering wobbles caused by faulty rear tires before, it is common on 4x4's
  13. manyolcars
    Joined: Mar 30, 2001
    Posts: 8,400


    and measure the wheelbase on both sides of the car
  14. CutawayAl
    Joined: Aug 3, 2009
    Posts: 2,144

    from MI

    If the brakes are ok and nothing(suspension, steering, hubs, wheels) is loose or bent, I suspect an improperly made or failing tire.
  15. BISHOP
    Joined: Jul 16, 2006
    Posts: 2,571


    Steering box.

    I had a pickup that would do exactly as you describe. I went through hell trying to solve it.

    Snug up the adjustment screw and see, just a half a turn at a time.
    Last edited: May 12, 2012
  16. Brad54
    Joined: Apr 15, 2004
    Posts: 6,015

    from Atl Ga

    Also might want to pull the shocks and see if they're worn out.

  17. spooler41
    Joined: Feb 25, 2007
    Posts: 1,099


    Did you have the brake shoes arc'ed after the drums were turned. It may be that the brake shoes are still out of round and not fully contacting the drum. It would be worth checking.

  18. Dchaz
    Joined: Sep 6, 2009
    Posts: 481


    Ok, drove it to yellowbelly for the drags today. We ran 60-75 mph on the freeway to there, and it has no shimmy,shake or anything at speed. Smooth and straight as a arrow. I talked to a couple people there with all most identical set ups and I think I'm going to put a panhard bar and a stabilizer on it and see what happen. Oh and the right spacers on the front. Thanks for the help. If that doesn't work I have a list to go down.

    That's what I was thinking too. As soon as I get the money together I am going to buy new drums and shoes and see if antique auto supply in Arlington can or knows someone that can match the shoes to the drums.
  19. That tells you quite a few things.
    1 balance issues are fine
    2 tire run-out is not a problem
    3. there's no significant wear on the suspension components and they are working fine - SUCH AS WORN TIE ROD ENDS.
    One would assume that your tie rod or drag link would transfer the shimmy to the other side also, Hummmmm?

    Yet your problem appears only when you apply the brakes. your pedal pulsates and you get a front wheel shimmy.

    Think about the action of the brakes, the force they apply, the direction of the tire.
    Now think back to 8th grade science class. EVERY ACTION HAS AN EQUAL AND OPPOSITE REACTION.

    Your pulsating pedal is the brake shoes loading and unloading someplace. That's pretty much a given. The someplace is most likely the visual clue you get, shimmying front wheel.
    A valuable clue is that its not transfering to the other wheel.

    Something is up with the drum, the hub or the spindle.

    A panhard bar isn't going to help because the other wheel/ axle assembly isn't moving. A steering stabilizer isn't going to help because the tie rod isn't shaking the other wheel.

    Hope you get it sorted out.
  20. Perrorojo
    Joined: Feb 25, 2011
    Posts: 357


    I had the same issue with an O/T truck. The brake was dragging slightly on one of the front wheels. As the heat built up the drum would warp and cause the wheel to hop and shake. The more you got on the brakes the worse the shimmy got.
  21. rustang
    Joined: Sep 10, 2009
    Posts: 710


    +1 my OT '69 Mustang was giving me fits last fall/this spring...all new brakes, springs, cylinders, master, lines, drums turned...everything new and it developed the same braking shimmy from the front left...

    I determined it was dragging slightly, and heating up the drum (only did it after after driving)....adjusted the brke a little loose, and it is much betterr...
    Last edited: May 13, 2012
  22. firingorder1
    Joined: Dec 15, 2006
    Posts: 2,147


    Shouldn't a "reverse death wobble" be called a "birth wobble"?
  23. That's opposite,
    Reverse death would be ressurection no ?

    And actually I thought this was going to be about a bad wobble while backing up when I opened it.
  24. gnichols
    Joined: Mar 6, 2008
    Posts: 10,930

    from Tampa, FL

    Yeah! A life wobble - an undetectable wobble that fixes everything! Gary
  25. BOBBYA312
    Joined: Feb 12, 2006
    Posts: 140

    from Ala

    Do you feel it most thru the steering wheel or the brake pedal?
  26. Believe it or not, I had this same problem on my O/T 08 Suburban! Finally found the inside right brake pad was dragging on the rotor, ever so slightly. new pads, hardware, turned rotors, fixed.
    I had the same shimmy, pulse in the pedal, everything. It would stop fine, but felt just like warped drums.
  27. fenderless
    Joined: Mar 31, 2006
    Posts: 1,286

    from Norway

    When you say side steering, I asume you meen draglink steering.
    I have seen cars wobble if the tube size is to small/weak. Also if the link on the left drum are homemade not stoud enough.

    Hope you get it sorted out:)

  28. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 6,498

    from Oregon

    Have you tried comparing the shoes to the drums to see how they fit? If the arc of the shoe is greater than the curve on the drum your shoes will make contact on the ends, and not in the middle, or equally. Shoes that make most their contact on each end of the material will cause a vibration when braking. Shoes with most contact in the center will not brake as well as well fitted equal contact throughout, but they wont normally cause vibration.
  29. Don's Hot Rods
    Joined: Oct 7, 2005
    Posts: 8,319

    Don's Hot Rods
    from florida

    Just one more suggestion, do you have the shoes on the right way ? The shortest shoe should be on the front on both sides, and the longest shoe goes on the back. If you reverse them goofy stuff can happen.

  30. Dchaz
    Joined: Sep 6, 2009
    Posts: 481


    Had a friend ride with me today, it's not just one side it's both front wheels are doing it. He has a set of steel wheels he is gonna bring over tomorrow so I can put them on the front and see what happens. And we noticed the steering joint on the colum has some slack in it last night.

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