Brake troubleshooting

Joined
Mar 23, 2016
Messages
118
Location
Greeley, Colorado
First Name
Chris
Willys Model
Wagon
Willys Year:
1955
#1
I have a 55' wagon that has the original drum brake setup. After adjusting the front brakes, the front drivers side wheel started to lock up after braking. I re-adjusted the brakes on this wheel, removing most of the drag on the wheel from the adjusters. Everything seemed fine, but on my way home from doing some errands, the front drivers side wheel started locking up again when the breaks were applied.

I'm thinking the possible culprit could be a bad wheel cylinder, or maybe some crud in the break line. Has anyone else experienced this problem before. I will be pulling the drum off this weekend to re-inspect the brakes and wheel cylinder. (I inspected everything, and checked the shoe lining the day I adjusted the break shoes, about three weeks ago. Everything looked fine, with no leaks, ect.)
 
Joined
Jun 13, 2010
Messages
546
Location
Saginaw, Michigan
First Name
Ted
Willys Model
Pickup
Willys Year:
1954
#3
I had this problem also. My fix was to shorten the push rod from the pedal to the master cylinder about 1/4". It is adjustable. When cool everything was fine, but after warming up the problem would show up.
 
Joined
Mar 23, 2016
Messages
118
Location
Greeley, Colorado
First Name
Chris
Willys Model
Wagon
Willys Year:
1955
#4
I had this problem also. My fix was to shorten the push rod from the pedal to the master cylinder about 1/4". It is adjustable. When cool everything was fine, but after warming up the problem would show up.
I thought about that. I fiddled with the adjusters again today, drove it, and it seemed ok. A few hours later, I went to go get my son from school, and I didn’t get 50 feet from my house before it locked up. Would it do it after sitting for that long.
 

jfcroni

Precision Fit
Joined
Mar 3, 2013
Messages
899
Location
Midwest
First Name
Jim
Willys Model
Wagon
Willys Year:
#5
If all adjustments seem good.... if you have old flexible rubber brake lines from the block to the cylinder, they could be swollen internally and not be allowing the fluid to return into the lines under the spring tension between the two shoes. Could be the cylinder too.
 
Joined
Mar 23, 2016
Messages
118
Location
Greeley, Colorado
First Name
Chris
Willys Model
Wagon
Willys Year:
1955
#6
If all adjustments seem good.... if you have old flexible rubber brake lines from the block to the cylinder, they could be swollen internally and not be allowing the fluid to return into the lines under the spring tension between the two shoes. Could be the cylinder too.
Ahh, the rubber linesp never crossed my mind. They haven’t been replaced since December 1997, so it’s probably time. Lol. I guess we’ll see when I get the wheel and drum off.
 
Joined
Feb 12, 2016
Messages
1,080
Location
North Lawrence,Ohio
First Name
Frank
Willys Model
Pickup
Willys Year:
1959
#7
It could also be weak return springs or improperly installed springs. I have seen them installed with the hooks in the wrong places and they will not apply enough return pressure to return the brake cylinder. Good luck and let us know what you find.
 
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