The dreaded handbrake

Chris

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TBH I just keep forgetting to have a look. I've been at this handbrake thing for best part of 20 years and I don't think I've ever actually got around to simply looking to see if it could be done. Pretty dumb.
 
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frank rabbets

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What is the purpose of those adjustable rubber stops behind the back plate? Are they to relax the cable? Mine have never seated from new.
 

Shayne

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In my view most rear brakes are so crap the disk is likely as old as the dog bone so part of that dog bone 5mm is to account for wear in the drum , a standard dogbone + new disk and your back to spec when the truck was new .

That principal applied to both my 90's and and i have never given the handbrakes on them a moments thought since .
 

Chris

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Oh those! If they've never touched Frank then clearly you've not been following the thread on how to adjust it correctly. They take up the slack in the mechanism inside the drum - not the cable to the lever.
 

Chris

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No Frank, that's not it at all. It doesn't have any bearing on the handbrake cable really. You're looking at it from the wrong direction. It controls the 'backlash' if we can call it that in the drum mechanism. Once that is all taken up, you only need the slightest movement in the cable from the lever to apply the brake. You can have slack or no slack at that point because the movement needed to apply the shoes to the inside of the drum is minimal. What you don't want is movement in the lever taking up slop in the drum. Adjusting the little rubber ended screws and the cog wheel leaves the lever and cable only needing to apply a small movement to apply the handbrake
 

frank rabbets

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I took my assy all to bits both sides. Luckily I had oxy acetylene. The clevis pins inside the drum had rusted solid. Hardly any wear on the shoes (original 165 K miles) and only witness marks on the dog bones.What a nightmare getting it back together. By the time I had to assemble the second side I had worked out how to do it.

Assembling handbrake components:-

1. Put the front shoe (with lever) on first. First attach and let the bottom spring hang down then secure the shoe to the backplate with spring and clip.
2. Put cable/lever clevis pin in and press the clip together.
3. Secure hanging down spring to rear shoe and position shoe in place with fully closed adjuster with wheel at front. Hold in position.
4. Put bungy cord around the shoes to retain them in a circle and in their working positions.
5. Secure rear shoe to backplate with spring and clip.
6. Prize open the tops of the shoes and fit the dog bone in with it's spring next to the first shoe.
7. Fit the top springs. The stronger one goes on first and just above the dog bone spring. Fit the weaker of the two springs to the other shoe. Remove bungy.
8. Fit the front shoe little spring.
9. Take up the play by pulling on the lever (attached later to the main cable) then undo the screw till it touches the backplate then loosen one turn. Do up lock nut
10. Attach the main cable. (This may be tight if the handbrake end is over adjusted, still proceed though).
11. Attach the two lever return springs to the backplate.
12. Adjust the nut on the cable/hand brake lever end until the adjusters just lift off the back plates then undo the nut one/two turns to let the main cables slacken slightly.
13. The shoes are still in their fully backed off position. Move the front of the adjuster wheel upwards on both sides ( drivers side left hand thread to achieve this) until the wheel stops and the brakes are locked on. Slacken off 6 notches.

P.S. Does not matter if the adjusters are the wrong way round they will just adjust in the opposite direction.

I think that's it but corrections welcome. May help someone who has never worked on drum brakes before.
 
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THL

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I took my assy all to bits both sides. Luckily I had oxy acetylene. The clevis pins inside the drum had rusted solid. Hardly any wear on the shoes (original 165 K miles) and only witness marks on the dog bones.What a nightmare getting it back together. By the time I had to assemble the second side I had worked out how to do it.

Assembling handbrake components:-

1. Put the front shoe (with lever) on first. First attach and let the bottom spring hang down then secure the shoe to the backplate with spring and clip.
2. Put cable/lever clevis pin in and press the clip together.
3. Secure hanging down spring to rear shoe and position shoe in place with fully closed adjuster. Hold in position.
4. Put bungy cord around the shoes to retain them in a circle and in their working positions.
5. Secure rear shoe to backplate with spring and clip.
6. Prize open the tops of the shoes and fit the dog bone in with it's spring next to the first shoe.
7. Fit the top springs. The stronger one goes on first and just above the dog bone spring. Fit the weaker of the two springs to the other shoe.
8. Fit the front shoe little spring.
9. Take up the play by pulling on the lever (attached later to the main cable) then undo the screw till it touches the backplate then loosen one turn. Do up lock nut
10. Attach the main cable. (This may be tight if the handbrake end is over adjusted, still proceed though).
11. Attach the two lever return springs to the backplate.
12. Adjust the nut on the cable/hand brake lever end until the adjusters just lift off the back plates then undo the nut one/two turns to let the main cables slacken slightly.
13. The shoes are still in their fully backed off position. Move the front of the adjuster wheel upwards on both sides ( drivers side left hand thread to achieve this) until the wheel stops and the brakes are locked on. Slacken off 6 notches.

I think that's it but corrections welcome. May help someone who has never worked on drum brakes before.

Thanks for this, dreading what's underneath mine as I'm not sure when the rear shoes where last changed or what state the whole systems in. I'm hoping WD40 and a few stud taps with a hammer will loosen anything :grin:

Sounds like you've got yours well sorted, did you replace the discs/rotors too or just the shoes?

Will post up a pic when I have time.
 

Chris

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Frank I wish I had been there with you. It's far easier than that I can assure you. Yes there's a knack, but bungees and so on? Just not necessary - when you know how.
 

frank rabbets

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I found securing the second shoe to the back plate impossible without the bungy. Only one Chris and if you "don't know what you are doing" it takes 2 seconds. Perhaps you could post your procedure.

THL I had replaced the drum/disc about 10k miles ago. Still nearly 4mm left on the lining. 1 mm is minimum. Perhaps you could mark Chris and me out of 10 after you have finished lol.
 

Chris

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Frank, it's one of those things I just do. Not something I could write up. One essential tool though is a pair of bent needle nose pliers. Other than that, I mostly assemble the shoes etc off the vehicle then put them on as one assembly. I don't do it part by part.
 

frank rabbets

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Bent needle nose pliers!! Don't need those:grinning:. Easy on the bench rather than on the car where you are trying to fit things on a vertical surface. lol.

Why did you bend your pliers?
 
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