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Trouble with my car hauler

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  • Trouble with my car hauler

    Thought I'd run this by the group in case someone possibly had seen something like it before.

    Recently the truck (hauler) started to shake or chatter when I would have to brake hard at low speeds like coming to a stop sign. Once it started it would continue to do that until it the truck came to a stop. It would do it even if I put it in neutral so once it starts it continues no matter what I do until the truck stops. Wish I could explain better what it does you would probably have to have ridden in it to know. I guess one way to describe it is, like something is gabbing the drive shaft, lets loose, grabs it again, etc.

    It had the second leaf in both rear springs broken where it curls into the bushing at the front. I thought this might be it so bought two new springs and put in and didn't help. In fact it is worse but not sure the springs are the reason.

    Yesterday I loaded the '51 and started to to strip but as soon as I drove out the drive way I could tell it was a lot worse. It did it without even applying the brakes and was doing it on starting out. Seems to get better with a little speed but slowing down it is BAD!

    Turned around and came home, unloaded the car and when I drove it to the barn it was not as bad as it was with the car on it.

    I've taken both drums off and both inner and outer bearings on both sides are fine, drums not broken, with both axles out the pinion turns free as can be with no noise, with axles in can't hear any noise, etc. I jacked both sides up one at a time before taking it apart and ran it up to 30 mph in high gear, tried braking, no noise, let it spin in neutral, etc. Nothing I did would make any noise or chattering. Also no noise cruising down the road.

    I was going to take the rear center section out thinking it might be a carrier bearing or loose ring gear, etc. but hate to do that since it makes no noise at all going down the road or setting still spinning. Surely it would make some howling or some noise if it were any of these. It does seem to have a little extra back lash but not that excessive. Supposed to be .006" to .012". Only guessing but would guess about .050" by using the yoke.

    I've looked the frame over and can't find any cracks, looked at cross members, etc.

    The rear U joint at the pinion is loose enough you can feel it but not drastic and it will turn easily and smooth in both directions without any binding. Other than taking the pig out, I'm at a loss as to what to do next. I will put a new U joint in but really don't see how that could be the problem.

    All four wheel bearings look good as do the races, can't find any bad rollers, etc. Don't know that they would do this any way and again surely would make some noise.

    If anyone has heard of anything like this or have any ideas, let me know. Would like to get it fixed this week as want to go to the Indy Goodguys Hot Rod Nationals this week end and Michigan for a pure stock race next week end.


  • #2
    I assume tires are balanced, but have no cure other than a question about tire balance. I know of a fellow who had a Honda that shook. It was a new car. Honda replaced cv joints, and checked tire balance , no solution to his shaling. He finally had the car aligned and tires balanced, problem solved.


    • #3
      Well Ted - this is just a guess but I'd be changin' that U-joint first. It's the ONE thing that's got obvious wear and could be seeing a load even in neutral. That or a problem with a brake shoe dragging![}]
      Does this thing have a center carrier brg on the driveshaft?[B)]

      Miscreant at large.

      1957 Transtar 1/2ton
      1960 Larkvertible V8
      1958 Provincial wagon
      1953 Commander coupe
      1957 President 2-dr
      1955 President State
      1951 Champion Biz cpe
      1963 Daytona project FS
      No deceptive flags to prove I'm patriotic - no biblical BS to impress - just ME and Studebakers - as it should be.


      • #4
        Yes, it does have two center carrier bearings. They appear to be good and tight with the only looseness showing in the rear U joint at the pinion yoke and it is very little, just enough you can feel it. U joint works both ways and is smooth and free. Will definitely change it while I have it out.

        The brakes seem fine and with each tire off the ground, they spin freely. Plenty of play in the emergency brake too.



        • #5
          I've had something similar happen like that a few times Ted. I'd look very closely at the drums, (check them for roundness), at the shoes and hold down hardware, (especially the health of the return springs). It could even be the master cylinder holding just a tiny bit of residual pressure, causing the brakes to overheat, ever so slightly, until the cumulative effect of multiple stops causes it to act like that. In any event, I'd bet that it's in the brake system itself, and it's an overheating condition....

          First time it happened to me it was a hold down pin washer that failed, (wasn't put in right and the pin pulled through the washer, releasing the front shoe, which dragged, over heated everything, warped the drum). Second time was a riveted shoe that separated from the metal portion of the rear shoe on my one-ton dually Ford. Finally, just recently, a rear grease seal had been leaking just the tiniest bit, causing the brake shoes to drag, very slightly, overheating them. It only did what you've described, (almost exactly), when I'd used the brakes hard, (like in multiple traffic lights), then after a number of those stops, it acted up. Let it cool down, or drive it without stopping for a long distance and you'd never know that I had a problem.

          Hope this helps....




          • #6
            I had something similar happen to my boat trailer with a surge drum brake system. It turned out a bolt had worked itself loose that fixed the lower end of the primary shoe. When the brakes were applied the shoe was rocking back and forth when engaging the inside of the drum. The result was a chattering sound and a violent shaking of the truck and trailer.