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Old 04-10-2012, 04:05 AM   #151
ragtoplvr
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when the pads touch is the petal firm or mushy. If it is firm, it takes a while for drum brake shoes to bed. The self adjusters work when you stop in reverse. If things are firm, but long travel as long as you make at least one good complete stop in reverse every day, in about 1000 miles the petal will come up a lot. If mushy petal, then you have air.

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Old 04-10-2012, 05:44 AM   #152
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Originally Posted by mmitchell57 View Post
As of last night I had all the brakes installed and functional. E-brake works great. However, I am going to read up on the best way to do final adjustments on the drums since I don't have a ton of experience with it.

On the front brakes I had to install new wheel cylinders and brake hoses. They were both shot to hell. I all installed new pads all the way around. I bled out from the farthest away cylinder to the closest cylinder. The pedal goes about 3/4 of the way to the floor till pads touch, and if I pump they tighten up pretty nicely. That tells me I have air in the lines or I didn't do the best bleed job. Eitherway, I'll be back on it tonight after doing some reading.
It sounds like you're making good progress.

I've always bled by the opposite method- closest wheel first and farthest last. Of course that may vary from manufacturer to manufacturer as to what's recommended.

As far as adjusting drum brakes, I always tighten them 'til they just barely drag; check by rotating the wheel with it in the air. The self-adjusters will take care of "fine tuning" and will hopefully keep them in adjustment as they wear.
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Old 04-10-2012, 07:41 AM   #153
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Does it have drums all the way round? If so, remove the wheel and use a drum brake adjuster on the star adjuster to adjust the shoes till they JUST scrub the drum so there is JUST a little resistance when you turn it by hand, repeat this with each drum till you are done. Slap the wheels back on and re-bleed the system and that pedal should come up to full firm. OR take the car ro a brake place and pay them to adjust and bleed which only cost about 25~40 dollars and it'll be JUST right.
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Old 04-10-2012, 07:58 AM   #154
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When you adjust the brakes, run them up until there's a fairly heavy drag. This centers the shoes. Then back off until you can just hear the shoes tickle the drums as the wheel is turned. On self-adjusters, you might have to use a thin screwdriver in the slot to push the adjuster pawl away from the star wheel so it can be turned with the brake spoon.
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Old 04-10-2012, 09:02 AM   #155
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Good info here. That's the main thing I was wondering, how close should I adjust the turn screw for the pads to insure they are proper. The unanimous response: The final result should be a light scrub on the drum and bleed the lines at that point.

I'll re-work the brakes tonights with the hope of them being done completely for a while. :)
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mmitchell57 screwed with this post 04-10-2012 at 09:21 AM Reason: Correcting final statement....
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Old 04-10-2012, 03:56 PM   #156
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Originally Posted by mmitchell57 View Post
Good info here. That's the main thing I was wondering, how close should I adjust the turn screw for the pads to insure they are proper. The unanimous response: The final result should be a light scrub on the drum and bleed the lines at that point.

I'll re-work the brakes tonights with the hope of them being done completely for a while. :)
That will do it. I have installed and adjusted hundreds of drums and this method works.
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Old 04-11-2012, 04:25 AM   #157
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Went through the entire procedure last night and the brakes are feeling quite a bit better. I can get solid contact on the first push of the pedal. the issue I have now is that it appears I have air in the lines. I have a mushy pedal. If I have the emergency brake on, things are great, if I don't, they are mushy as all will get out. I'm guessing that based on that I have air in the lines to the rear. So, I'll be figuring out how to get the air out of the lines.... damnit..... lol Outside of that, i'm going to start looking for tires!
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Old 04-11-2012, 02:52 PM   #158
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>"So, I'll be figuring out how to get the air out of the lines.... damnit"

Piece of cake. Usually at auto stores... or you can get a fancier one.
Or make one yourself. (bottle with brake fluid and a hose).
Really saves on having 2 people to bleed brakes.

Hook it up to the wheel cylinder brake bleeder valve with the hose. Pump away and make
sure the master cyliner is full of fluid. Close the bleeder valve when done.

http://www.amazon.com/OEM-25036-Bleed-O-Matic-One-Man-Bleeder/dp/B000CMDP44/ref=sr_1_12?s=automotive&ie=UTF8&qid=1334180847&sr=1-12

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Old 04-11-2012, 03:04 PM   #159
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Or use a similar setup, but run a longer vacuum line to a full-time vacuum port on the engine and use that as your source. Just make sure you don't overfill the catch can and suck brake fluid into the engine. I s'pose you could suck air in past the seals in either the master or slave cylinder doing it that way, though. You could also mod a replacement master cylinder lid with a pressure port and pressure bleed the system. One-man manual brake bleeding is a pain.
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Old 04-11-2012, 03:47 PM   #160
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The fact that you've got a good pedal with the emergency brake on suggests to me that the rears aren't adjusted properly. When the emergency is on, the rear shoes are jammed tight against the drums, and once the wheel cylinder pistons contact the shoes, you have a good pedal. When it's released, the shoes retract, and the pedal feels mushy. Try re-adjusting the rears.
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Old 04-11-2012, 05:41 PM   #161
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The fact that you've got a good pedal with the emergency brake on suggests to me that the rears aren't adjusted properly. When the emergency is on, the rear shoes are jammed tight against the drums, and once the wheel cylinder pistons contact the shoes, you have a good pedal. When it's released, the shoes retract, and the pedal feels mushy. Try re-adjusting the rears.
Ok, I'll give the rears another go to see if I can get them feeling better.
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Old 04-11-2012, 05:48 PM   #162
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Below is the tool I've been using to bleed. I will admit I may be using it improperly. I hook up only one line to the bleed screw. I open the brake fluid reservoir lid up. Then on the brake i'm bleeding I have one person in the car that pushes the pedal while I have the bleed valve open. Once they push to the floor I close the valve and have them release the pedal. I repeat this process until the fluid from the bleed screw is nice and clean and has no bubbles in it. Then I leave the bleed screw closed and pump the pedal slowly a couple more times with the brake fluid reservoir still open.

This has typically worked on motorcycles and resulted in excellent brake response. I'm not sure if I can use the same method on the drum brakes for bleed. After reading the comments in relation to the tool, I don't need to open/close the bleeder valve when doing this work. I can leave it open and pump a bit, check on it, pump more. Or I could go as far as putting a vacum on the line to "suck" the fluid through.

I have the day off tomorrow so after visiting a vintage car shop up the road I'll be working on this more. I hoping whoever works there can offer some sage advice.. :)

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Old 04-11-2012, 05:49 PM   #163
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Ok, I'll give the rears another to see if I can get them feeling better.
It's harder to gauge how tight the rear brakes are when adjusting because there's much more drag since you're turning the axle and driveshaft when you spin a wheel. You won't wreck anything by getting them a little too tight; they'll quickly wear in anyway.
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Old 04-11-2012, 06:24 PM   #164
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Set parking brake, bleed as usual. It may be the shoes not being arced to the drums and flexing and feeling like it needs bleeding. I had alot of trouble with my Willys brakes and it ended up being the rebuilt master cylinder. Ordered a new one, no problem now.
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Old 04-11-2012, 07:12 PM   #165
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It's harder to gauge how tight the rear brakes are when adjusting because there's much more drag since you're turning the axle and driveshaft when you spin a wheel. You won't wreck anything by getting them a little too tight; they'll quickly wear in anyway.
Roger that, will do.
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