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Need used l/r drum 55 president coupe

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  • Brakes: Need used l/r drum 55 president coupe

    Any sources for used drum? Studebaker Shop manual shows the drum to be 10" with lining size of shoe shown as 2".

    Brake and body rubber parts from Studebaker West arrived yesterday. Great and fast service.

    I find that someone, in a prior hub removal, 'FUDGEHAMMERED" the L/R hub/drum off. In doing so, the suspect chipped the rear side of the drum/hub unit in two places. Probably used one of those clamp from behind pullers (I know better from reading on this forum).

    I don't have the drum off yet as I am waiting for the (correct) puller I ordered to arrive. So I don't know the extent of the damage to the drum. In the event that I need a replacement drum, I would like to find a source for a used one if possible. (Yes I will have it turned). Also, any information on drum/hub units that will interchange with my year and model (55 President, Stock V8,Automatic) would sure be appreciated.

    PS: The Studebaker is still up on jack stands in the garage. My wife's Chrysler 300 Hemi is still parked outside. Good thing she likes the Studebaker (a lot).

  • #2
    When you do get it apart, take a good look at the slot for the key. Many times they will put the key in first, or put it in backwards and force it too far into the slot. I have had an axle crack and lost a rear wheel and all brakes because someone did that. You might want to magnaflux the axle before re-using it.
    RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.

    10G-C1 - 51 Champion starlight coupe
    4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
    5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon


    • #3
      55 President Brake Job + Parts

      Thanks for the good points in your response Roy.

      I think I know, but just to be certain: The axle key goes in after the hub is loosely re-installed (Yes?) Also, is the correct insertion of the key so that the beveled end is facing up and towards the outside (castle nut end) of the axle? I have the 55 Studebaker Shop Manual but don't find a clear illustration on the key orientation. It's probably me, not the manual!

      After the search for the 11" front shoes, and now the rear drum search, etc., it sure makes those conversion kits to disk brakes look tempting. However, in the interest of keeping this 55 President as stock as possible, I will continue to beat my head on the wall........

      I'm still interested in used 10" rear drums if anyone out there has a source?


      • #4
        Yes, the key goes in after the hub is inserted onto the axle and the hub is hand pushed as far in as a hand can push it.

        I put the key's bevel so that it matches/compliments the bevel on the axle slot - facing inwards and towards the axle. I think the bevel on the key is there so as to not force the key into the axle bevel. The manual does not show it clearly at all.

        I only push the key in flush with the outside of the hub and let the washer and nut drive the key to full depth. In other words, the key is as far out as possible and the bevel keeps the key as far away from the axle bevel as possible.

        Bob Peterson should have drums, and maybe Roy Valdez also. They are the same from 54-up with V-8 brakes. If you have finned drums, get a finned one. If you have non-finned drums, get a non-finned one. That is so your brake fade on hard use is balanced from side to side.
        Last edited by RadioRoy; 06-19-2012, 11:22 AM.
        RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.

        10G-C1 - 51 Champion starlight coupe
        4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
        5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon


        • #5
          Makes perfek sense now. Looks like I woulda put the key in upside down and backwards. I know not to lube the axle but I did see an interesting post (By Deaf Mute 10/28/2009) where the "Old School" recommended the following:

          `CLEAN BOTH THE AXLE AND DRUM SURFACES... then take a stick of blackboard chalk and do some scribbling on the axle tapers. This will lube them `enough to allow release... but not enough to allow them to be over-tightened and split! After following his advice I have noticed that my impact `wrench on the puller removes them like a dream.

          I thought that was a pretty crafty idea and may try it.

          WHEEL/HUB PULLER ..... FREEBIE ALERT!!! PAY IT FORWARD! I ordered one of those axle/hub pullers off E Bay (Universal Brake Drum/ Universal Hub Puller is MPP Brand. Adjustable sliding legs to pull wheel hubs, also removes press fit rear brake drums. - Striking handle and puller screw included. - The center pin is 9 1/2" long x 1 1/4" dia.)
          Picture of it is @

          It should be here in a few days. Once I am done with it, I will loan it out to any SDC Member for just the two - way postage (I think it's gonna fit in one of the U S Post Office Flat Rate Boxes for about $12 m/l.) So, it will be available for just the cost of shipping both ways.


          • #6
            That puller looks just like the Craftsman one I bought 35 years ago. Works great. Hopefully the Chinese metallurgy is up to the task.

            When Installing the puller I snug up the lug nuts hand tight, but only hand tight, after the puller is aligned. make sure the lug nuts are all the same depth on the studs. You want the pull to be centered.

            I take off the washer and put the castle nut on backwards and flush with the end of the axle. That will protect the axle threads.

            Hold one end of the striking arm with one hand, pre-loaded in the direction you want it to go and hit the other end with a heavy hammer. But don't hit your own arm. If you don't pre-load the striking arm, it tends to flop around and slide off the screw.

            If the hub is stubborn, and it might be if it was muscled on, or if the key is jammed, you can do some tapping directly on the end of the screw. Go easy on that, though, so you don't wreck an axle bearing.

            If it is stubborn, you can also leave the puller under pressure, while you go and do something else. You can even leave it overnight if you want to.

            If the hub has been damaged by putting the key in wrong, and the key has been jammed into the axle, be very wary of that axle. It's really exciting (read that "butt puckering") when the whole wheel and hub falls off when you are driving. Nobody needs that type of excitement.
            Last edited by RadioRoy; 06-20-2012, 10:15 AM.
            RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.

            10G-C1 - 51 Champion starlight coupe
            4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
            5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon


            • #7
              Good morning. Radio Roy is right,call Bob Peterson at 510 266 2522.

              Bob has drums already turned and ready to go, if you decide to get

              a drum from Bob, I will be in Rockland this Sunday. I will be taking

              Bob's grandson home, it will be after the potluck lunch at John Brayton's,

              Sequoia chapter member in Petaluma.

              nibbs53 Patrick.


              • #8
                Thanks Patrick for the info. Bob is on my "Things to Do" list, but I didn't have his phone number until your post. Looks like I won't be ready to order by the weekend but thanks for the offer. I am still finding issues and needed fixes. I am making a list, and checking it twice, of things I want to replace. I love this 55 but I am constantly trying to block out thoughts of the movie "THE MONEY PIT." LOL

                The hub removal tool is not here yet. But, I looked to see how the penetrating oil on both axle nuts was doing. I had already turned the castle nut around and loosened it on both sides. Left axle was still good and tight. But, to my surprise, the right rear hub/drum came off with just the pressure of my hand pulling on it. I had not applied any pressure to back it off. I noted a spill has been on the shoes but the rubber sleeves on the cylinders look to be new. The spill does not smell like brake fluid so I will be ordering axle seals while I'm in here. And doing an inspection and lube or replacement on wheel bearings all around.

                That "FUDGEHAMMER" mechanic/and or the prior owner I referred to in my initial post did what appears to be a partial brake job. Also, it seems he neglected to torque the axle nut to specs, but at least he put a cotter key in place and the axle key appears to be correctly installed! Initial inspection of the axle does not find damage. I will give it more inspection to see why it was lose (Keyway, taper, etc) after a better clean-up. ALL OF THIS PROVES OUT THE OLD SAYING: "GOOD ENOUGH" USUALLY ISN'T.

                Small World Department: I was raised (notice I didn't say "Grew Up") in San Lorenzo. A mere rock-throw from you in Hayward. Back in the day (late 50s & early 60s) I was a plaque displaying proud member of the East Bay Road Lords. Our plaque still hangs at Vic Hubbard's Speed Shop in Hayward. My car? 1955 Studebaker Commander Coupe, V8, 4bbl, Automatic, Alpena Blue. Held the DSX Class track record @ Fremont Drag Strip in 1960 with a whopping 83 MPH! I could usually take out the 55 Chevy, 265 Power-glides (and you know what getting beat by a Studebaker did to the GM Crowd back then.)

                Thanks again for the info.


                • #9
                  In you want to expand your search, the front brake drum for the 6 cylinder [16G6, 56G] is the same part number as your rear drum.
                  South Lompoc Studebaker