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Technical Brakes adjusting 1949 Plymouth

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Jeff J, Jul 9, 2016.

  1. Jeff J
    Joined: Mar 15, 2007
    Posts: 958

    Jeff J
    Member

    Ok, put all the shoes on and wheel cylinders springs went on great ! Now can't get the drums back on !! There are dual wheel cylinders on, no brake fluid in yet ! There are two adjusting nuts with arrows and they move the shoes up and down and back and forth ! Moved them in all directions ! Can get one side of the shoes on but not the other side on the same side on, but not the other and even put the arrows back to wear there were ! The thickness of the shoes seems to be the same as the old ones !!! Lost on this one !! Any tricks ?????? plymouth 1949 136.jpg
    plymouth 1949 136.jpg
     
  2. Barn Find
    Joined: Feb 2, 2013
    Posts: 2,317

    Barn Find
    Member
    from Missouri

    Adjusting those kind of brakes is key to making them work properly. It't not hard, but there's more to it than adjusting self-centering shoes. You might want to check the manual for the proper procedure and exact clearances.

    You might want to take a shoe back off, so you can get a good look at how those adjusting cams work. If you can see how they operate, you should be able to see how they move the shoes in and out. Also, make sure you understand how the lock nuts keep the adjusting stud in place. If you are trying to adjust them by turning the lock nuts (instead of the studs), you will get some unpredictable results. I remember struggling with that the first time I started wrenching on old Mopar brakes without fully understanding them.

    Once you see which direction the cams move, wind them in all the way, and you should have no trouble getting the drums on. Winding them back out is how the brakes are adjusted. The ones I've done had a slot in the front of the brake drum (usually with a cover screwed over the slot). Use a feeler gauge in the slot as directed by the manual to set the clearance between the shoe and the drum. Rotating the drum may be required, and you have to set each adjusted individually.
     
  3. proartguy
    Joined: Apr 13, 2009
    Posts: 501

    proartguy
    Member
    from Sparks, NV

    Per the manual:

    The point of the arrow indicates the high side of the cam on anchor bolt. Turn the point of the arrow toward the drum to decrease clearance. Turn point of arrow away from drum to increase clearance. Assemble anchors with arrows pointing away from heel of the shoe.

    These brakes used a gauge which centered on the drum to measure the size and was then put on the hub to adjust the shoes to match, for the installation major adjustment.

    These brakes can be a hassle to get correct.
     
    Hnstray likes this.
  4. You can make a gauge like this and adjust them with the drum off.... File0130.jpg
     

    Attached Files:

    Hnstray likes this.

  5. Barn Find
    Joined: Feb 2, 2013
    Posts: 2,317

    Barn Find
    Member
    from Missouri

    Another pointer if it's your first time with these adjusting cams: If you rotate them more than one full revolution, you end up where you started. That will be clear if you watch them work with the shoe off. Again, recalling my early effort at cranking and cranking on one of those adjusters. I don't remember mine having arrows on them to indicate the position of the cam.
     
  6. Vimtage Iron
    Joined: Feb 28, 2010
    Posts: 552

    Vimtage Iron
    Member

    To get brakes to work properly the shoes need to fit the drums correctly, take the shoes and drums to a machine shop and have the drums turned to even them up and have the shoes arched to fit the drums correctly, this gives correct contact of lining to drum then install everything, if I remember correctly set the shoes as close to the cylinders as the anchors allow,slip the drum on tighten the axle nuts and then adjust the anchor on one shoe till the drum stops turning then back off slightly then adjust the other shoe,if those have the slots for the feeler gauge adjust accordingly, with the shoes and drums now turned to match the feeler gauge adjustment will work correctly,if the drums were slightly out of round the shoes would hit the high spots making the adjustment hard to do.
     
  7. James Curl
    Joined: Mar 28, 2006
    Posts: 370

    James Curl
    Member

    Beside the two large eccentric bolts that secure the wheel cylinders there are two smaller bolts that operate a cam that rides on the center of the brake shoe moving it in and out. You have to worry about heel and toe as well as center, making them very hard to get right with out the centering tool. You should take a sharpie and draw a cross hatch pattern on the shoes and drive for a while before pulling drums to see where the wear is taking place. Usually the first 4 inches of the heel or toe. I went to disc on front because I could never get them right, all of that shoe surface does not do you any good if you are not using it.
     
  8. AndersF
    Joined: Feb 16, 2013
    Posts: 777

    AndersF
    Member

    Yes you gonna need a tool like that.
    First make sure that the adjusters on the middle have the lowest spot against the shoes.
    Use the tool with the drums off to center the shoes in the up and down direction.
    Then put on the drums and use the adjusters to adjust the shoes against the drum.
    The key to get it right is to get the shoes centered. I repeat this couse its that importend.
    This type of brakes dos not have any self centering possibility.
     
  9. Jeff J
    Joined: Mar 15, 2007
    Posts: 958

    Jeff J
    Member

    Thank you, gona try this !
     
  10. Jeff J
    Joined: Mar 15, 2007
    Posts: 958

    Jeff J
    Member

    The shoes match up to the curve of the drum perfect ! What seems to be the problem I'm about total in the middle 1/8" shoes to big that would mean about 1/16" on each side ! The middle of the shoe seems to be where I'm off with the measure shoe gauge that I just bought ! Gona make that tool that was posted above Thanks !
     

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