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How can I remove the rear brake drums on a 1948 Commander that are stuck?

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  • Brakes: How can I remove the rear brake drums on a 1948 Commander that are stuck?

    I have a 1948 Commander four door. I removed the rear brake drums a month ago and now need to remove them again. But they won't budge now. I don't know if installed them wrong or what. The drums do turn, but just won't come off the axle. In addition to this problem I think I might have done something to threads on the passenger side axle. The nut won't go back on it. I was using a OTC hub puller and they won't budge.

  • #2
    loosen the Jesus nut on the axle shaft about 1/4 turn after you break it loose. Drive car around yard for a few minutes, or until you hear loud popping noise. Or, you could do it using the correct hub/drum puller, which pulls from the center of the hub.

    Bo
    Bo

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    • #3
      Too late now but always remove the washer and reverse the nut install till even with the axel end to prevent damage. I assume you know about using a hammer on the end of the puller to shock them off. I hope the drums were installed on clean dry axel shafts and the key was properly installed.

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      • #4
        When I installed the woodruff key I put some anti-seize compound on it. Would that have created the problem?

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        • #5
          Originally posted by yepitsme View Post
          When I installed the woodruff key I put some anti-seize compound on it. Would that have created the problem?
          Yup. Improper key installation sure could have caused the problem.

          You want the key as far outboard as possible and the angle/relief complimenting the relief of the key way.

          Jamming the key into the axle too far can stress crack the axle, damage the hub, and then the whole thing can snap off when you are driving. Exciting!

          The drum/hub goes on first, all the way on as far as you can push it with your hands. Then insert the key with the angle part complimenting the bevel in the key way (angle towards the center of the car and angle towards the key way). Do not push the key all the way in! Leave it just proud of the hub. Put on the washer and nut and tighten it to specs.

          Everything associated with the tapered axle must be DRY and clean.
          RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.

          17A-S2 - 50 Commander convertible
          10G-C1 - 51 Champion starlight coupe
          10G-Q4 - 51 Champion business coupe
          4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
          5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon
          56B-D4 - 56 Commander station wagon
          60V-L6 - 60 Lark convertible

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          • #6
            Well, looks like I really screwed it up. Great.
            But I do thank you for the advice.
            Dennis

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            • #7
              A dash of heat may help, leave the nut on or stand aside while tightening. The assembly can fly 2-3 feet when it lets go. There are die nut thread chasers available for those axles, most tool stores have them.

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              • #8
                Thanks. I will give heat a try.

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                • #9
                  Critical Question: What OTC Hub puller you using? is it an industry standard 3 Jaw type puller, or do you have to put lug nuts thru holes?

                  Reason I'm asking is that you NEVER pull from the edge of the drum. a 3 jaw puller is a good way to wreck the drum.

                  Use the one that pulls against the lug nuts.

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                  • #10
                    Just pulled the drums off the 63 Avanti and used the OTC puller with plate. (SKU: 6574) My wheel studs had been damaged by the previous owner so I liked the idea of getting a purchase on all of the studs rather than just three. It'is a 3/8" steel plate but it will bend so I welded plates to it to stiffen it (3 @ 11" x 1-1/2 "x 1/4"). It was able to take the full torque of my PorterCable electric impact gun without bending. Then let the MAP torch do the rest.
                    1963 Avanti R1

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                    • #11
                      Is there another piece to this puller? I cannot see how it works.

                      OK, I understand now. I wonder if they make a plate for 4 bolt hubs. I did not see one.

                      https://www.zoro.com/otc-universal-h...All%20Products

                      Last edited by RadioRoy; 01-21-2021, 12:50 PM.
                      RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.

                      17A-S2 - 50 Commander convertible
                      10G-C1 - 51 Champion starlight coupe
                      10G-Q4 - 51 Champion business coupe
                      4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
                      5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon
                      56B-D4 - 56 Commander station wagon
                      60V-L6 - 60 Lark convertible

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        You know, I totally missed that fact that we could be working with a 4 bolt hub here, I didn't find a plate for that either. That said I don't see why one couldn't drill that plate for a 4 bolt or just make another plate. With the way I boxed mine in I think someone could get away with using 1/4" plate to make it a little easier to manufacture. Somebody, not me, who's actually skilled with a plasma cutter could probably get it close enough without too much finishwork.

                        Now you have me thinking about sketching a plate up in CAD and seeing what having something waterjet cut would cost.
                        1963 Avanti R1

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                        • #13
                          I think I figured out what EnduroDriver (Lee) is doing. He puts the Plate on the Hub/Drum Assy. THEN the Hub Puller and if he bolted ALL 5 Studs to it (3 through the Puller) it could pull more evenly on all 5 IF the Plate is tough enough, it WOULD take a 1/4" Plate.

                          It's a bit of an indirect method.
                          StudeRich
                          Second Generation Stude Driver,
                          Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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                          • #14
                            Forty years ago, I had the in house machine shop make a four stud plate for my Ramblers out of half inch steel.

                            Too bad it will not fit the 50 and earlier Champions, as the bolt circle diameter is not the same.
                            RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.

                            17A-S2 - 50 Commander convertible
                            10G-C1 - 51 Champion starlight coupe
                            10G-Q4 - 51 Champion business coupe
                            4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
                            5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon
                            56B-D4 - 56 Commander station wagon
                            60V-L6 - 60 Lark convertible

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by yepitsme View Post
                              Well, looks like I really screwed it up. Great.
                              But I do thank you for the advice.
                              Dennis
                              No, not really. It's just stuck a little farther in than usual. If you're using the standard three-jaw drum puller, attached to three studs or lug bolts, all you need to do is put a "heavy strain" on the puller and walk away. Installing the axle nut a few turns loose is a good idea for safety, or, if you leave it off, the big clang as the drum and puller hit the garage wall will ring success. My experience with Ford T models and 1950 Chryslers is that simply allowing the tapers to touch is enough to call for the drum puller.

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