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Adjusting my brakes

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  • Adjusting my brakes

    questions about my 62 lark's brakes.

    First things first, ive gotten the star adjusters on the front brakes (both sides) Maxed out (wheel locked in place) I then click them 1 or 2 times just so the drum isnt completely frozen. Then i click them both down 8 times to loosen them pads from the drums. Thats what my stude manual tells me. Now heres the tricky part.

    When driveing (testing brakes) it has a mean pull to the right. SO i go back to the garage and back off the right brake 2 clicks.

    Get her back on the road still a mean pull to the right.So i go back to the garage again and this time i tighten the left brake 2 clicks.

    Get her back on the road still a mean pull to the right. Goto garage loosen the right a click tighten the left a click. Still same mean pull.

    Ive did this now all the way with diffrent combinations of star wheel adjustments on each side, and well she still has a mean pull to the right, But when i jack her up, and spin both wheels the brakes stop them visibly both. Also i've already bled the brakes so i know there solid on that end.

    Could this be a bad hose (the one way valve thing) and its allowing the left brake to stop the tire when its up on jack stands but under any kind of brake force it dosnt give it enough fluid to the wheel cylinder and causes the right brake to do all the brakeing? Thats about all i can think of and the hoses are the only thing that hasnt been changed yet.

    Looking to build up my 62 lark daytona 289. any ideas?

  • #2
    The "magic" of hydraulic brakes is that they apply the brakes to all wheels evenly. Mechanical brakes would do what you describe if they were out of adjustment. Hydraulic brakes won't.

    It sounds to me like you have foreign matter (brake fluid or grease) on one set of shoes (probably the right side). I'd disassemble both sides and see what you have. If the brakes haven't been "done" in some time, now would be a good time to rebuild the wheel cylinders. If there is fluid or grease on one set of shoes, I'd replace all 4 shoes.

    It could also be the rear that has the grease, oil or fluid on the linings. Remove your rear drums and inspect. You'll need the proper rear brake drum puller to do this...

    The hoses don't have any sort of one way valve in them. They are just hoses. These should be replaced every 5 years or so. There are 3 of to each front wheel and one where the brake line ties to the rear axle. If you don't know how old they are, replace them. If one goes, you loose all 4 brakes.

    When a hose is old, it will often swell internally. In that case, you can force fluid through it by applying the brakes (lots of force there), but the fluid can't return since it is only being pushed by the wimpy brake shoe return springs. That brake will "hang up" after you release the pedal. Not the symptom you are describing...but replace those hoses anyway!

    Dick Steinkamp
    Bellingham, WA


    • #3
      i dont know im just thinking of reasons it whould be pulling to the right so hard. ive checked for greese and the like nothing like that there all clean and brand new....everything besides the hoses... the rear brakes seem to be working fine as well, it seems to be an issue witht he front. ill go ahead and check the rears out again later.

      Looking to build up my 62 lark daytona 289. any ideas?


      • #4
        You might also want to check that the brakes are assembled correctly. Primary shoe on the front. Anchor block pointing at the primary shoe. etc.

        Dick Steinkamp
        Bellingham, WA


        • #5
          To find which one is locking up find a gravel area and apply the breaks till one wheel slides. This is done at low speed. then get out and see which wheel was sliding in the gravel. It is posible that it isn't one wheel that is pulling so much as one wheel which isn't braking (left side). You should now know which axel to look at. Make sure that the brakes are actually working on the side that didn't slide. Besides the hose look for crushed brake lines. Since you think it is the front check the crossover line on the front frame rail under the engine. Did you rebuild them and were they working correctly before?


          • #6
            Well I've looked at the brakes more today, took it for a couple of test runs. Everything checked out as far as the brakes and there assembly. Seems to me that the car has a natural tendancy to pull to the right, I'm wondering if the brakes are working fine, and there just makeing the car pull to the right because of a steering misalignment, or something that needs to be adjusted in the suspension? Is this a possibility? Has brand new tires and wheels, all running the same pressure as well.

            Looking to build up my 62 lark daytona 289. any ideas?


            • #7
              My 58 pulls to the left and locks that wheel with all new hydraulics and hoses. I'll let you know what I find.


              63 GT R2
              63 Avanti R1
              63 Daytona convert
              63 Lark 2 door
              62 Lark 2 door
              60 Lark HT-60Hawk
              59 3E truck
              58 Starlight
              52 & 53 Starliner
              51 Commander

              JDP Maryland


              • #8
                Thanks man appreciate the input and feedback you guys are giveing me.

                I do know that all my suspension bushings up front are shot(dryrotted and cracked to hell, and that it needs new rear leaf spring bushings.

                Looking to build up my 62 lark daytona 289. any ideas?


                • #9
                  I just redone the brakes on my '62 Hawk and had the same problem. It ended up being in the adjustment on the rear end. After driving and adjusting it doesn't pull anymore.


                  • #10
                    hrmm. well im changeing the rear bushings tonight or tomorrow i hope so ill see about my adjustment in the rear while im at it.

                    Looking to build up my 62 lark daytona 289. any ideas?