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From: Daven Anderson
Date: March 21, 2002
I had a problem with the front pass. side brake locking up on my 1960 Plymouth wagon back when it had front drums. What happened is that the bottom wheel cylinder had leaked fluid onto the bottom shoe very slowly. If you drove the car frequently, the amount of fluid leaked was not enough to cause the brake to lock on the first touch of the pedal from rest. However,if I let the car sit for weeks between drives,the right front brake would lock up at the first touch of the pedal from rest. (occuring when the car was moving forward) This was because of the fluid getting on the shoe,enough would build up over longer rest periods to cause this. My temporary cure was to pull out the car 200 ft. or so at a crawl before touching the pedal (which would lock up the right front brake). Then I would back up the car and apply the brakes several times while backing up. The lockup never occured applying the brakes while going in reverse. Doing that 3 or 4 times and then going forward solved the front lockup problem,at least until the NEXT time it sat,when I would have to do this again. I replaced the wheel cylinders and hot-tanked the brake shoes,BUT enough fluid had soaked into the lining by this time to where the lockup was still occuring at every first pedal application from rest (car moving forward),and removing the drum at that point you could see fluid even if the lining had seemed bone-dry before the car moved from rest. So I finally had to replace the shoes outright to solve the problem,the lining had too much fluid soaked in by then. Before the shoe replacement I was parking the car so the first movement out was in reverse,so I would back out and apply the brakes hard several times while reversing so it would not lock up when it went forward. Fun,huh?!