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  • Flashback
    replied
    A lot of good advice . I"ll add my 2 cents worth. I have a 53 DRIVER. The first thing I ripped out was the old brake system. remember DRIVER. I have 4 wheel discs and a dual master cylinder. At the very least, upgrade the brakes to the 54 up drum, with a dual master cylinder. If you want to slow down by downshifting. Then pull the OD knob OUT.

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  • studegary
    replied
    For 1953s, I have replaced, at least the front, brakes with the assemblies from 1954 up V8 cars. I have found these systems, when in good shape, to be more than adequate.
    My father used to say; "Brakes are cheaper than engines/clutches/transmissions." In other words, do not downshift to slow down in normal driving.

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  • jackb
    replied
    ....... then again, there are some here, like me, who rarely downshift at all except when making a tight turn. Brake surface area is >> than clutch surface area. And I'd rather be pulling brake drums than transmissions and clutch housings. One complaint back in the day with OD was the loss of engine braking below cut - in speed (27-32 mph).

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  • skyway
    replied
    RE “almost all it or nothing”

    Properly functioning single chamber master cylinder should not make the pedal “feel” any different than those with dual. In fact many old timers thought the single cylinder resulted in a better (until you broke a line/hose) pedal.

    One fairly “stock” way to improve braking performance on those early ‘50’s V-8 cars is to replace them at each wheel with the better (larger and dual servo) brakes used from 1954 or 55? until the end of production. You’d need everything from backing plate to brake drum, off a later V-8.

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  • 53 commander 574
    replied
    Lol...I have brakes just not well balanced brakes. I hear these are almost all or nothing with the single stage master cylinder ?

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  • RadioRoy
    replied
    Brake work should really be the first/highest/top priority.

    Safety is the most important thing.

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  • studegary
    replied
    Originally posted by 53 commander 574 View Post
    So around the block test drives should be done with the OD lever pulled out and one hand ready to pull the emergency brake? I know, not optimal. Brake work is on the agenda :-)
    Brake work should be number one. It is more important to be able to stop than to be able to go.

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  • StudeRich
    replied
    When you get the Brakes working as they should, you will be able to go over 32 MPH In O.D. and you WILL have some Engine Braking especially in Second.

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  • 53 commander 574
    replied
    So around the block test drives should be done with the OD lever pulled out and one hand ready to pull the emergency brake? I know, not optimal. Brake work is on the agenda :-)

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  • gordr
    replied
    No, you do get engine braking when overdrive is engaged and working, just not very much. Engine braking in 3rd over is present, but weak, just as it is in 5th gear with a regular 5-speed manual. Engine braking in 2nd over is about equal to that in 3rd direct. When you are below governor cut-in speed, and the solenoid is not energized, then you are in free-wheeling mode, and there is truly ZERO engine braking.

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  • rockne10
    replied
    If you are descending any hill serious enough to save your brakes by using engine compression you definitely want to have the overdrive locked out.
    Before cresting the hill press the accelerator to kick the transmission back to third gear; you can then safely pull the OD cable out.

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  • Greenstude
    replied
    You never will have engine braking when the car is in overdrive. With the overdrive engaged, the car always will free-wheel when road speed exceeds engine speed, no matter what gear the transmission is in.

    To get engine braking, overdrive must be locked out, by pulling the OD knob out from the dashboard.

    The safest and best way to do this is to have the car at a dead stop when the knob is pulled out. This also can be done IF you step hard on the accelerator while driving and get the car out of overdrive. DO NOT EVER pull out the OD knob while the car is in motion in overdrive as you WILL HAVE serious mechanical damage .

    When driving with overdrive locked out, you always can push in the OD knob to engage overdrive. Then, it will engage at any speed over about 32 mph.

    Bill

    Last edited by Greenstude; 09-23-2021, 05:52 PM.

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  • gordr
    replied
    Well, I think you are right in that overdrive is not engaging, hence no engine braking because you are still in free-wheeling mode. Could be an electrical problem with governor, relay, or solenoid. Or perhaps a mechanical problem. It is very easy for the lockout cable to become misadjusted, such that theb T-handle hits the dash escutcheon before the lockout lever hits its stop. If the lockout lever is even just a little bit off its stop. the OD shift rail can inhibit the action of the solenoid.

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  • 53 commander 574
    started a topic Transmission / Overdrive: Downshifting

    Downshifting

    When downshifting a 3speed OD -53 C/K I dont feel the tranny "pulling back" nor do rpms increase. I expected some assistance in slowing this heap down because brakes arent 100%. But nothing like what I'm use to in other manual cars. OD is pushed IN but I'm not exceeding 30-40 mph and I dont THINKim engaging OD ???
    Does this sound right ??
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