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Front left brake grabs.
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60 Imp
Posted 2014-01-21 7:51 AM (#423172)
Subject: Front left brake grabs.


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Location: North Australia
60 Imperial with 3 platform brakes. I replaced all cylinders, hoses, shoes and used silicone fluid (plus cleaned, painted backing plates e.t.c.). Bog stock American parts. Brakes adjusted up fine when I bled them. Car drove and braked great for 3-4 hundred miles, now the left front grabs when I first get in the car. The first slow stops in the driveway pull the car up sharply with the L.F., and the brake stays on even after my foot is off the pedal for a second or so. After the next braking effort at 10 MPH or so, the brakes feel normal, car stops straight with no funny noises. I have pulled the drum and checked the assembly, all looks good. Tolerances right, bevelled shoe ends. Have adjusted the brakes twice in 700 miles, and they adjusted up good both times. Good pedal and brakes this old car! I have read everything I could find, and now need help on here. Only symptom is less than full contact wear pattern on the new shoes, which I would expect with new shoes?

Any ideas/similar situations with you Fellers?



Steve.
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plymouth
Posted 2014-01-21 8:38 AM (#423178 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



Expert

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Location: McComb, Mississippi
what is the condition of the front wheel bearings?
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wizard
Posted 2014-01-21 9:21 AM (#423182 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



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Post a picture of the brake with problems, perhaps the return springs are mounted wrong/and/or weak.
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StillOutThere
Posted 2014-01-21 9:21 AM (#423183 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



20001000
Location: Under the X in Texas
Are your new hoses American made or did they come from a supplier like Kanter who buys outside the US and sells to you? It sounds to me like a new hose has failed internally thus holding pressure and then after a second the pressure is allowed to return to the line to the master.
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GregCon
Posted 2014-01-21 9:29 AM (#423186 - in reply to #423183)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



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Location: Houston
Sometimes when the left brake grabs it means the right brake is doing nothing.
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Shep
Posted 2014-01-21 10:46 AM (#423195 - in reply to #423186)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



Expert

Posts: 3130
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Location: Chestertown, NY ( near Lake George)
Last time I ran into this with a 59Dodge, the linings done at truck shop were no good and grabbed like crazy, if you cannot pin anything down, switch the shoes lt to rt, see what happens. You could try sanding the linings some, may be some unseen contamination."
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flyinbuttress
Posted 2014-01-22 8:22 PM (#423500 - in reply to #423195)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



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Location: Piedmont, Oklahoma
Since you say it's dragging then that left side cylinder may be sticking. Jack it up, press the brake hard, get out and check the front wheels to see if either spin. If not, open the bleeder. If fluid shoots out and the wheel releases then you know you have a bad hose. If it's still locked up then it's in the drum somewhere, like cylinder or springs. Hope that helps.
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60 Imp
Posted 2014-01-23 6:26 AM (#423555 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: RE: Front left brake grabs.


2000100010010025
Location: North Australia
Thanks for the feedback. I will get into it when this monsoon is gone and post a photo or 2. We have had over half a meter of rain in the last 2 weeks.

Steve.

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JT Vincent
Posted 2014-01-23 12:59 PM (#423625 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



Expert

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Location: Jamaica Plain, MA
My car does this too. I use the ebrake to pull out of the driveway, get the car to 25 MPH and gently apply the foot brake. It dries condensation off the shoes and rectifies the problem. Not an ideal solution, but it works. I think in my car's case, the shoes get wet-- effective contaminated, and then dry under gradual gentle braking. Maybe it's a bad hose. I don't know. It's a classic plague for many FLs.
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grunau
Posted 2014-01-24 10:01 AM (#423759 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.


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Location: North of the 49th
Hi
I've had the same problem a few times , what I do now with a full or partial brake overhaul is heat the brake drums in order to get them to "sweat" out the residual contamination from previous brake fluid leakage/wheel cylinder failures. I've noticed over time that if this is not done any contamination that was in the drum and cleaned off either with a light machining or with solvent rises to the surface on braking causing this very thing... I just use a hand held heat gun to evenly heat the inside surface of the drum...you'll be surprised as to what shows up! Don't cook the daylights out of the drum just evenly heat! Wipe the surface down after heating, before the drum fully cools using a clean rag. Once you figure you got it all allow the drum to cool and wash with dish detergent (Dawn seems to really work) you can wet sand lightly with 180 grit wet or dry paper do a final wash and rinse..let dry and reinstall drum.
Oh and you'll have to clean the contact surface of the shoes as well , just a simple sanding usually does the trick. Take all required dust precautions when sanding the shoes.

Edited by grunau 2014-01-24 10:09 AM
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ttotired
Posted 2014-01-24 5:13 PM (#423815 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



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I wonder how much it has to do with the front left being the one with the shortest fluid leanth?

Just thought that if the distribution block was moved to the centre front to make the lines to each side about the same leanth, it might solve this issue, that seems to come up quite often.

My customer dodge also pulls quite hard on the l/f on initial application, then settles down, but it still scares me a bit when I have to drive it.

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furvedere
Posted 2014-01-24 9:52 PM (#423848 - in reply to #423815)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



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Location: Rochester, NY
The front right on my 58 DeSoto Sweep does exactly what 60 Imp has described...I've installed new hoses..new wheel cylinders...new front wheel bearings/seals, had the front drums turned. I have NOT changed shoes but have sanded them and cleaned them more than once. Even heated them up with a propane torch to burn/boil the fluid out of them. Have NOT changed return springs. Still...the right front grabs hard when I first take it out of the garage...Front right locks up, tire skids in driveway...continues to skid even after I take my foot off brake. After three of four repeats of this it quickly settles down and braking is normal, straight and even. My observations over the years: I have to add brake fluid to the MC once/twice/summer...I have a sneaking suspicion the short brake line (under the front right drum) in between the two wheel cylinders has a slow leak (as it sits, it drips and fluid settles at the bottom of drum soaking the bottom of the shoes)...I have yet to confirm this though. I'll have to pull that wheel before I get it out of the garage this Spring. The car did this when I got it...and even after all the work it still does it. After a while,new fron wheel bearings you just learn to live with it.

Bob

Edited by furvedere 2014-01-24 10:24 PM
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Shep
Posted 2014-01-25 10:23 AM (#423926 - in reply to #423848)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



Expert

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Location: Chestertown, NY ( near Lake George)
Our cars did not do this new, either the shoes are contaminated, incorrect lining material, I have had both these situations occur, as well as slight fluid leak fom the line or w/c.
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JT Vincent
Posted 2014-01-25 12:38 PM (#423961 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



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Location: Jamaica Plain, MA
Yeah this should be better understood since most FL drivers have probably had this occur. I guess it's dirty shoes. I had a 61 wagon that did this for a few weeks, and then it went away forever.
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Richbo
Posted 2014-03-18 4:55 PM (#431859 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.


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Our front brakes are dual-primary shoes , which makes them more prone to grab and lock-up. Other cars have a primary and secondary shoe (one wheel cylinder).
Usual culprit is just a little brake fluid on them.
One might think the fluid would make the brakes slip, but it is just the opposite, like when you lick you fingers to count your money !!!
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ttotired
Posted 2014-03-18 5:44 PM (#431865 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



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Location: Perth Australia
Ahh, you have to lick your finger to count your money, you must have 2 much, best you send some to me to relieve you of the stress of having to worry about it

Dont thank me for offering to take that burdon on for you, it just the type of guy I am

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Richbo
Posted 2014-03-18 11:38 PM (#431931 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.


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Posts: 202
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I have a variety of quirks to my cars brakes -- from loud roaring like a t-rex , to pulling to one side or the other , to locking-up , so I make it a habit to ride the brakes for the first few hundred feet of driving to warm them up. Works wonders !!
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bad58mike
Posted 2014-03-18 11:49 PM (#431933 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: RE: Front left brake grabs.



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www.aajbrakes.com
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plymouth
Posted 2014-03-19 1:03 PM (#431986 - in reply to #431933)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



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Location: McComb, Mississippi
Try to sand the contact surface of the drum snd then clean it..
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JT Vincent
Posted 2014-03-19 3:17 PM (#432010 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



Expert

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Location: Jamaica Plain, MA
Some say boiling them does the trick. I've had at least 2 FL cars that did this with apparently clean shoes.
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d500neil
Posted 2014-03-19 3:57 PM (#432017 - in reply to #432010)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



Exner Expert 19,174 posts. Neil passed away 18 Sep 2015. You will be missed, Neil!

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And others say that the contaminated linings can be de-greased by lighting them on fire (outside, in lotsa air
so the fire burns well, and briefly).


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VAN HELSING
Posted 2014-03-19 11:02 PM (#432076 - in reply to #432017)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



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Location: Upper Hunter NSW Australia
.....

In the past with other cars I've had, if they were grease soaked from a bad grease seal then I'd soak them for a few days in a bucket of gasoline, the gas dissolves the grease in the lining and after drying in the sun I then just sand the lining down and it seems to work OK from then on.

If the lining is soaked in brake fluid I do the same with plain alcohol spirit, dry and sand.

Has always worked for me.

It's only a temporary measure as I then find these previous oil/brake fluid soaked linings usually wear a bit quicker , but it will get you out of a fix anyway til you get new brake linings.


.....

Edited by VAN HELSING 2014-03-20 6:44 AM
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1961plymouthfury
Posted 2019-10-03 1:20 AM (#588335 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



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Location: Minor Hill, TN
I am converting my front drum brakes to disc brakes on my '61 my previous '61 also had front disc brakes
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Phil_the_frenchie
Posted 2019-10-03 2:51 AM (#588338 - in reply to #423172)
Subject: Re: Front left brake grabs.



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Location: Pau, S-W France
I had also exactly the same problem with the left front wheel, the first brakings were terrific, I left a black mark on the ground and need to go R to unlock. I had to press very very gently the brakes and drive on 50-100m and then all was fine. After some times i replaced the shoes (which were news, with asbetos, from China, bought on Ebay) and the problem disapeared ...
Curiously i don't have the problem on the other front wheel which had the same shoes. I'll replace all the linings this winter on front shoes.
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