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Brakes

Panama

Forum Website User
VOC Member
Last week I opened up the front brakes on my '52 Rapide to see what could be done to improve on the poor brake performance. I was saddened to find many problems, such as grease slobbered all over the interior of the left brake.

I would like to do things right and hopefully get the front brakes to the point where I can get enough force to approach lockup, just in case I need to make a panic stop.

The drums seem to have a little bit of run out. It seems like the best way to eliminate run out would be to turn the drums while on the wheel. (It would be very hard to mount the drums without any run out because the drums are bolted onto the wheel rather than riding on bearings on the axle.)

It would take a very large lathe to turn something as large as a motorcycle wheel. Is there any practical way to turn the drums while mounted on the wheel?
 

Marcus Bowden

VOC Hon. Overseas Representative
VOC Member
Some thing that I've always been meaning to do as I have various sliders and compound slides from a selection of turning machines, an old RFM (so front wheels can be done in same rig) fixed to bench. Fabricate with an angle iron bracket (1/4" to 3/8") to mount onto axel shaft and rest on lower frame tube, secure compound slide to angle iron. Turn wheel forward about 25 to 75 RPM for this diameter,, slowly wind in a nicely radiused tool and remove high spots first , no coolant or cutting fluid should be used unless doing steel drums, I must admit that all drums I've seen there is always a few thou ovality as spinning wheel senses it's intermit ant sound.
bananaman
 

Panama

Forum Website User
VOC Member
Thanks John.

I have spoken to Mike Partee in the past, and since I live in Southern California, this will be a good excuse to see what treasure he has in his shop.
 

bmetcalf

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member

Vince Farrell

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Last week I opened up the front brakes on my '52 Rapide to see what could be done to improve on the poor brake performance. I was saddened to find many problems, such as grease slobbered all over the interior of the left brake.

I would like to do things right and hopefully get the front brakes to the point where I can get enough force to approach lockup, just in case I need to make a panic stop.

The drums seem to have a little bit of run out. It seems like the best way to eliminate run out would be to turn the drums while on the wheel. (It would be very hard to mount the drums without any run out because the drums are bolted onto the wheel rather than riding on bearings on the axle.)

It would take a very large lathe to turn something as large as a motorcycle wheel. Is there any practical way to turn the drums while mounted on the wheel?

Years ago York section founder member Frank Willerton made a gadget for skimming brake drums on the complete wheel with tyre fitted.
It consisted of a piece of channel iron with a slot, bolted at a right angle to the lathe bed. The wheel was mounted with it’s bearings on a spindle offset at the other end of the channel, adjusted so the tyre ran on the lathe chuck. A boring quill was mounted next to the wheel axle so the tool could be wound down the inside of the drum.

VOC members can see a picture of the setup in 1988 MPH 474.
 

Big Sid

Guest
On brake related things . Use only Disc Brake type Bearing Grease . it won't run when hot . Absolutely stays put .
On those still using Electron brake plates . These are magnesium metal and MUST be sealed with a good paint and not show any cracks , scratches , or bare areas . If they are neglected the atmosphere will enter the pores and they will turn to dust , literally . Keep them sealed or it's a real safety issue . Magnesium was referred to by the racing fraternity as " Electrified Dirt " . The old castor bean oil kept the pores sealed in race motor cases etc , but if deep cleaned and put on display they will literally turn to dust . Sid .
 

Big Sid

Guest
More on brakes . I have set up many with HD truck linings , had them bonded on , work super giving strong braking action , and also for clutch shoes this is excellent . Find an old brake relining shop . I brought in examples of nos brake lining segments and clutch lining segments and had them copied in all dimensions and curves from truck material . Never a problem . Sid .
 

Big Sid

Guest
More on brake and clutch linings . If these are still the original woven Ferodo material and greasy or oil soaked from the clutch they are ruined . Toss em . If of the later DURON denser material , a hard matrix , no pores , these can often be gently boiled in hot detergent suds water on the stove . Do it twice , first cleaning with contact spray cleaner , or lacquer thinner . This does better on brake shoes , pretty good in the clutch too . The problem with clutch shoes is that these rotate and if the oil remains in the pores it will be hurled out to the surface again when run a while . They respond well to the boiling as described above . Worth trying as I've known it to work . Sid .
 

vibrac

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
I am struggeling with this turn the whole wheel in a lathe bit
(I am talking Vincent alloy brake plates here)
I have my race linings bonded on by safetek UK I then turn them to fit the drum (with 2 pieces if hacksaw in the lever pivot)
I then check I have a small clearance twixt bearing tube and plate center(always have)
then simply assemble wheel pull brake hard on and do up axel bolt tight
if the excentricity of the drum brake surface on the alloy hub is within the confines of plate hole and bearing tube clearance (and if not you have big troubles) its got to be concentric at that point and since the brake plate does not rotate where is the problem?
 
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