Register now to get rid of these ads!

Technical Balance Buick Drums

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Andy, Oct 24, 2021.

  1. Andy
    Joined: Nov 17, 2002
    Posts: 4,874

    Andy
    Member

    I am working on a Buick drum conversion. I decided I would try to balance them. Before I have just put them on the spindle and added weights to them until they did not seek a position. I wanted better. I had an old wheel bubble balancer. I could not adapt it. I made an insert that had a point and went inside the hub and registered on the lower bearing. A bulls eye went on top of the hub. I fooled with it until I could put the drum in any rotation and have the same weight/position to get a balance.
    The bulls eye cost $2.20 and the rest was scrap. The tube is pipe and the top and bottom parts were cut from plate.
    I still have to install the weights and adjust them.
    I hope it works!
    fullsizeoutput_2f6d.jpeg fullsizeoutput_2f6e.jpeg fullsizeoutput_2f6f.jpeg fullsizeoutput_2f70.jpeg 7t7tzN+cSi+lX%nx9xgFXg.jpg
     
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2021
  2. Cool idea.
    I just bought some Buick drums to put on my A.
    Do the drums typically need to be balanced? I read not to remove the factory weight.
     
    kidcampbell71 and Stogy like this.
  3. Andy
    Joined: Nov 17, 2002
    Posts: 4,874

    Andy
    Member

    They are very heavy and the centering register diameter must be machined to fit the hub. It does not take much to get them off center and out of balance.
     
    kidcampbell71 and Stogy like this.
  4. alchemy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2002
    Posts: 18,054

    alchemy
    Member

    So, the top hat supports the bottom of the hub, and is tippy on the stand? And the bullseye just sits on a washer on top of the hub? It sounds like a great solution, but I need more details.

    I currently have eight Buick drum conversions sitting on my shop floor that could use rebalancing.
     
    Stogy likes this.

  5. continentaljohn
    Joined: Jul 24, 2002
    Posts: 5,207

    continentaljohn
    Member

    Great idea ! going to use that one thanks
     
    Stogy likes this.
  6. Andy
    Joined: Nov 17, 2002
    Posts: 4,874

    Andy
    Member

    The adapter sits upright by itself. The sensitivity is adjustable by screwing the pointed bolt up or down. I did not know what would be the correct position so I made it adjustable.
    alchemy, what details would you like?
     
    Stogy likes this.
  7. Fortunateson
    Joined: Apr 30, 2012
    Posts: 4,607

    Fortunateson
    Member

    Very cool. I have four drums but a Weight is missing from one of them u fortunately.
     
    Stogy likes this.
  8. alchemy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2002
    Posts: 18,054

    alchemy
    Member

    Adjustable so the pivot point is in the middle of the hub?
     
    Stogy likes this.
  9. Stogy
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
    Posts: 23,174

    Stogy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I believe the bottom pic shows the pivot point beyond the inner bearing...a pointed bolt is visible...so if it is the pivot point it is within the hub.

    Does the hub just rest on the top of the bolted pivot or is the inner hub dia. a close tolerance fit to the bolted pivot on top of it supporting the hub?

    0_20211024_221142.jpg

    @Andy this is awesome tech...I'm curious as Alchemy and others are...

    I believe the Orange arrow is the pivot bolt...is the yellow pointer the inner bearing of the bottom of the bolted pivot?

    A crude drawing with dimensions via vernier would be very helpful...you're sharing this tech so giving the dimensions would minimize confusion...

    Another question, how do you increase or decrease the balance...stick on, glue on, weld on?
     
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2021
    Max Gearhead likes this.
  10. Andy
    Joined: Nov 17, 2002
    Posts: 4,874

    Andy
    Member

    I will take some pics and make a drawing tomorrow. Thanks to all for your interest.
     
    Stogy and pprather like this.
  11. Stogy
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
    Posts: 23,174

    Stogy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Thanks Andy...I have Buick drums up front and balance has always been a concern...

    Hence my interest...
     
  12. I have 2 to do, one is a NOS piece so following this. Great idea Andy.
     
    Stogy likes this.
  13. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 7,012

    jnaki

    Hello,

    The old days of balancing a wheel were those cool bubble balancers. It was fun to watch the bubble float and place the weights to make it centered. According to our master wheel/tire and alignment friend, the bubble balancer was used because there was nothing else at the time.

    It still created a shaky front end due to the lack of correct placement and even balancing of the rim and tire. So, until the on the car spinning balancing came into play, there was just the bubble to look for its centering location.

    When the on the car spinning balancer came out, it balanced the wheel as well as checking out the drums plus the wheel for a complete balance. But, the problem was once this was done, no one could rotate the tires due to the spinning balance was done for each side and wheel/tire combo. If rotating the tire was necessary, then the spinning balancing had to be done again.


    So, in the timeline of tire balancing and alignment of the whole front end, the technology advanced to the point of the off car tire balancing machines. Most of the time, a bubble balancer was not necessary and the off car balancing took care of all tire situations. But, these days, tire companies have their own spinning balancers and also add in the wheel alignment to keep everything in line with the whole car.

    Jnaki

    If more balancing or alignment was necessary, then the tire/alignment guy would direct you to the tire shaving business for a finer tune up. Balancing using the bubble has difficulties that are usually not solved by the machine. It is 50s technology and as much fun it was to use those back then, it is not what the tire pros use today to keep our daily drivers from feeling shaky on our local and long distance drives.


    If you do all of that balancing, don’t forget to get it done professionally on some new technology. Just the bubble balancing will not solve the problems. YRMV

     
    Stogy likes this.
  14. Andy
    Joined: Nov 17, 2002
    Posts: 4,874

    Andy
    Member

    This is the only way I could think of to balance them.
    I have one of the old on the car wheel balancers with the adapters to clamp on the wheel. I can't emagine getting it centered or spinning the Buick drums.
    I have balanced the whole thing on the car but then you have to make sure the wheel is put back in the same place. I paint the rim and the drum.
    It would be interesting to design something that would spin the drum mounted on the spindle. A 1/2" drill and a plate with holes for the studs might work. It also may be dangerous. Maybe the plate would have a bolt welded in the center and the drill just was spinning a socket. The plate could be bolted solid.

     
    jnaki likes this.
  15. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 7,012

    jnaki





    Hello,

    "Old front tire spinning the car balancers" is a simple Google Search these days. Read as much as you can, as some have units, but don't use them correctly or don't have all of the parts. Their units have different parts. Yes, you are correct. Once anyone spins a tire on the wheel and drum, it has to stay on that specific side and spot. Or if you move the tire/wheel combo to one other spot, then you have to spin balance the new position again. That was one reason the demise of the "spin on the car" balancers happened.

    These days, it is probably best to go to a specialty tire place that has a off car spin balancer and start from there. Modern technology has its advantages and a million cars that run straight and true after visiting those specialty shops are happy campers.
    upload_2021-10-25_8-28-43.png
    When we bought the 327 powered 1940 Ford Sedan Delivery, it looked great, had what we wanted in a new project and drove like a tank on oil slicks. The handling was not the best and until the specialty shop that deals with tires, balancing, alignment took over, it was a terrible way to drive.

    The specialty shop took steps like bubble balancing, then spin balancing the tire on the car. But, until he took off the tire, fixed the alignment, balanced the tires on a new tech off the car spin machine, did it start to get better. He finally sent me to a tire truing shop to get round tires. After truing, it did it handle and stop like it should without any vibrations.
    upload_2021-10-25_8-24-0.png
    It took months of trial and error, but new suspension parts, new brake stuff, turning the wheel drum surfaces, align the braking system, true the tires for roundness and finally a machine rack alignment procedure made the 40 Ford Sedan Delivery drive in a straight line at any speed, including 70 -80 mph freeway speeds on our long road trips. A new car can usually get away with spin balancing off of the car, then get a wheel/front end alignment that fixes 95% of any bad driving/handling problems.

    But, it is the old cars with old worn parts and those that need attention. If you have a wheel balancer and a spinning tire balancer on the car, that should balance that whole side of the car/tire. Then the same procedure on the other side will match the balancing and hopefully make it straight non shaky driving. If not, then new stuff and following the repair and replacing parts is necessary. YRMV

    Jnaki

    Remember, it usually is not just one thing on old cars, but a bunch that affects a single thing. Driving in a straight line without any bumps or handling problems is a reachable goal. Don't be in a hurry, just get it right with some professional specialty shop's information and physical ideas/action.
     
  16. Andy
    Joined: Nov 17, 2002
    Posts: 4,874

    Andy
    Member

    Here is some more detail.
    The top hat just goes in against the bottom of the inside bearing and is centered on the bore for the bearing.
    The pointed bolt comes down and hits a bar with a partially drilled hole in the end.
    Everything needs to be machined. The critical items are the fit in the bearing bore and the centering with the pointed bolt. The top of the bottom plate must center the bolt in the hub.
    The heigth of the assembly and the measurements of the tube are not critical.. They just need machined so they are without bumps and cleaned of zink.
    The outside of the tube was machined to cut off the excess weld and overhang of the top piece. I drilled and taped the 5/16 threads while the tube was in the lathe. The bottom plate was welded on and machined.
    The top and bottom plates were cut using the circle cutting thing I posted a little while back.
    The sketch is terrible. The top end is made from 1/2" plate to try to keep the bolt straight.
    The centering of the point on the bolt is also critical. I used a Drimmel tool with a small grinding wheel so it had no runout. It was spun in the lathe.
    fullsizeoutput_2f74.jpeg snVToVfPTU28AuLmq31IXA.jpg RzLaUA8sShSWkTFOnpj++g.jpg fullsizeoutput_2f73.jpeg fullsizeoutput_2f72.jpeg fullsizeoutput_2f71.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2021
    Elcohaulic, Stogy and Budget36 like this.
  17. alchemy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2002
    Posts: 18,054

    alchemy
    Member

    Just to confirm, the bullseye sits on the top of the hub, not touching the balancer tube or bolt at all?
     
    Stogy likes this.
  18. Andy
    Joined: Nov 17, 2002
    Posts: 4,874

    Andy
    Member

    That’s right. It just sits on the hub snout. That’s the easiest part of it.
    The end of the bolt is well below top.
     
    Stogy likes this.
  19. brigrat
    Joined: Nov 9, 2007
    Posts: 5,496

    brigrat
    Member
    from Wa.St.

    Now make one for finned Buick drums for the rear!
     
    Stogy likes this.
  20. Andy
    Joined: Nov 17, 2002
    Posts: 4,874

    Andy
    Member

    I might be able to design one but I don’t have a hub.
     
    Stogy likes this.
  21. brigrat
    Joined: Nov 9, 2007
    Posts: 5,496

    brigrat
    Member
    from Wa.St.

    Just need to make the spindle to hold up the bubble contraption..........................
    IMG_1237.JPG IMG_1238.JPG
     
    Stogy likes this.
  22. So.... how will you balance them? Grind, weld, stick-on weights, malory metal?
    How are they balanced when it’s discovered they are unbalanced?
     
    Elcohaulic and Stogy like this.
  23. [​IMG]
    On the Buick drums that I convert to '42 to '48 Ford hubs, the easiest way I know to balance them is to remove the weights and take them to my friendly local tire/brake/alignment guy with a spin balancer that knows what he is doing (this won't be a big franchise shop, a smaller local shop is best). He knows how to set the machine for the diameter and width of the hub/drum assembly and this is after they have been turned with the Ford hubs installed. He spins them and then we mark the drums with where and how much weight they need. I dip into my bag of Buick drum weights (I have about eight sets of drums), weigh them (with the mounting bolts, button head SS allens in my case) and find the correct weights (or you can make them) and then drill and tap the drums to mount them where needed. Respin and check the balance, and adjust if necessary. It comes out perfect and my front end is smooth as can be. Needless to say, make sure your wheels and tires are balanced as well. This is just another way to do it and not to say a bubble balancer won't work, but I think the technology of spin balancers is much more advanced.
    [​IMG]
    The backing plates are '53-'56 Ford F250/F350 (Lincoln) 12" Bendix Brakes
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2021
  24. Stogy
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
    Posts: 23,174

    Stogy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Great tech discussion...Thank you all...
     
    Max Gearhead likes this.

Share This Page

Register now to get rid of these ads!

Archive

Copyright © 1995-2021 The Jalopy Journal: Steal our stuff, we'll kick your teeth in. Terms of Service. Privacy Policy.

Atomic Industry
Forum software by XenForo™ ©2010-2014 XenForo Ltd.