Monday, April 27, 2015

Who needs brakes?

On my first real ride of the bike I noticed rather quickly, while also traveling rather quickly, that the rear drum brake did not work. Taking a quick look at it after returning safely to the garage revealed it was stuck in the disengaged position. Since I knew I'd have the wheel off shortly, while ditching the rear fender, I figured I'd worry about it then. 

I did note the "inventive" spacer one of the POs used due to the stretched, or more likely wrong, brake cable.

I finally tore it down a few weeks ago but didn't find anything specific other than it being really rusty and crusty.

So I cleaned the mating surfaces of the pivot points really well and went to put it back together. Holy crap, you must have superhuman strength to be able to get those springs in place! The factory service manual says "Attach second spring in place with pliers." I must not have the right kind of pliers.

I put the parts on the shelf since I didn't need it just yet, hoping to find a better solution in the meantime. Well it was finally time to put the rear wheel together so I needed to come up with something.

With nothing better in mind, I resorted to brute force. Grabbing a couple of scrap 2x4s and a willing assistant/victim (my buddy Mike) we went to work. I connected the shoes with the springs, minus the pivot pin and shaft. We then inserted two of the 2x4s, with a third in between as a pivot.

While Mike pulled the two boards apart, I was able to slip the pivot and shaft in place.

That sounded dirty but, whatever, I was finally able to get the brake reassembled. It seems to engage and disengage just fine now. That sounds dirty too, think I'll just quit now.

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