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MG TD TF 1500 - Brake Drum Removal Front TF

My TF has been sitting on blocks for approx. 30 years. The front wheels will not turn no matter how much leverage is applied. Since I will not be able to loosen the brakes should I just rent a puller and force them off? Maybe with a little heat?

Thank you

Dan - newbie
DHN Nordstrom

Hi Dan, you will probably be inundated with replies soon, but what I would try first is to undo the brake pipes and the two nuts from the wheel cylinders and with a suitable drift try to loosen the shoes with a big whack from the back, you will need new cylinders anyway.
Don TF 4887
D J Walker

I assume you have turned the adjusting screw (Operation Manual page 34) to try and slacken the brakes? Some "encouragement" with a wooden mallet is also good.

Matthew.
M Magilton

Dan, I wouldn't just pull them off if they are that tight, you could break something! As Matthew says, back off the adjusters as far as you can. Tapping the drum with a leather or wood mallet might break the shoes loose. In that length of time setting, the shoes are probably rusted fast to the drum. PJ
Paul S Jennings

Dan,

The ideal solution is to slacken off the adjusters, however to access the adjusting screws you first need to align them with the access hole, to do so you need to rotate the drum. There are several methods to do this:

1/ Put the wheels back on and tow the car, may not be possible if the car is not easily accessible.

2/ with the wheels off put one wheelnut on a stud and use a socket and pry bar on this nut to turn the drum to the the nearer hole, then you can slacken the adjuster. It might be an idea to get a helper to hammmer the drum at the same time.

3/ If the above fail you can soak the inside of the drum (through the adjuster hole) with WD40 and leave it for some time. Then try method 2/ again.
WD40 will ruin your linings but they are most likely U/S anyway.

John

52 TD


J Scragg

Thank you all for your advice and wisdom. Since the car is stripped down to just a tub and frame whatever I attempt will have to be on jack stands. I did try breaking them loose by towing the car, but that didn't do it. I will try the WD-40 idea and try a very long lever. This will take a few days. I will let you all know if it worked. The pipe removal will also accompany my attempt.

Thanks again.
DHN Nordstrom

If all else fails, pull the drums off. The shoes are ruined, but cheap enough to replace. Wire wheels or disc wheels?

I have a good pullers I can lend you, either for wires or disc wheels.

Tom Lange
Bar Harbor, ME
t lange

Tom,

Not knowing how the shoes are attached (my first British car project) I am afraid to just force them off fearing I might destroy some very valuable pieces.


I have disc wheels. I checked with the local rental shop and for $20/day I can rent a three-fingered puller. Thought I would do the WD-40 soak for a few days and then give it a try.

Thanks, Dan






DHN Nordstrom

" I will try the WD-40 idea and try a very long lever."
I would use Kroil rather than WD-40. Kroil is a penetrate, where as WD-40 is a water displacement product to protect sheet metal.

"Not knowing how the shoes are attached (my first British car project) I am afraid to just force them off fearing I might destroy some very valuable pieces."
The shoes are held in place by the anti-rattle spring and the wheel cylinders. Start by removing the brake lines from the two (yes, two) wheel cylinders and the nuts from the studs that hold the cylinders in place. You may wind up breaking the studs when trying to remove them (play a torch on the nuts to loosen them), but the cylinders are replaceable and you are probably going to need new ones anyway. Get a wheel puller and pull away - you will remove the drum, brake shoes and brake cylinders all together. Cheers - Dave
D W DuBois

Dan, however you break the bond between the drums and shoes, I wouldn't even try to pull the drums off! You have to get them so the drum will move. As Tom said, those shoes will need replacing, so don't worry about the shoes, but the drums now, that's another story. be careful not to damage the drums if possible! I would mix up a batch of 50/50 mixture of transmission fluid and acetone. spray it in there any way you can until it runs out the bottom in a catch pan. Let it set for a couple days. Hopefully it'll break the bond. PJ
Paul S Jennings

As a last resort I do put on my full-width puller, and force the drum off. It sounds - and feels - brutal, but it works. The brake lining often is removed from the shoe, and sometimes the shoe is distorted, but there is usually no core charge for the shoes, so they simply get thrown away. I've never had any damage to the drum, and I've done this a dozen times or more.

A few other tips: Rent a puller where the fingers bolt under the wheel studs, and not simply a long 3-fingered puller that goes on the outside edge of the drum. The latter is useless, and WILL damage the drum. I can lend you a puller for the postage.

Also, use sandpaper and a scothbrite pad to clean up the drum; do not have it turned by a brake shop. There is precious little material to waste on these old drums, and replacements are not available. I don't think I have turned 2 drums in the last 10 brake jobs. I just clean them up well, measure them, and re-use.

Tom Lange
MGT Repair
t lange

This all sounds like excellent advice. Come Monday, after a couple of days of soaking with penetrating oil I will pick up the three-fingered puller and give this a try.

Thank you all.
DHN Nordstrom

Dan,

Dave D. mentioned "The shoes are held in place by the anti-rattle spring and the wheel cylinders." The anti-rattle springs are hooked into a tab welded on the brake backplate. If you try to pull the whole assembly then these springs will prevent it comming apart. If you pull hard enough you will either break the springs or rip the tabs off the backplate. Your best course of action is using WD40 (or some other penetrating oil). I know because it worked for me.

Attached is a photo showing these anti-rattle springs.


John













J Scragg

I don't remember any springs on the front brakes of a late TD/TF; only the rear.

Tom Lange
MGT Repair
t lange

Tom,
I have the Beehive springs on both the front and rear brake linings on my 53 TD.
I would think it is an essential part of the brake system.
Dan,
The only time my brakes ever stuck on [never leave the car in storage with the hand brake on - ask me how I know] I was able to free them by attempting to move the car forward and backwards with the engine.
If your engine does not run - it will be tougher. You could try to pull the car forwards then backwards to see if that will snap them free. Otherwise Id say the penetrating fluid method is the best way to go.
Rod
Rod Jones

I must be mis-remembering.

Thanks.

Tom Lange
t lange

If there are Beehive springs on the front, they were added by someone, positiveily not factory. If a one piece hub/drum: remove the wheel cylinder nuts/brake lines like Dave D. says above, and the whole mess will come off of the stub axle with a puller. Same with wire/separate drum/hub, but you will have to pull the hub off with drum attached. Much easier that forcing the drum off of the shoes. George
George Butz

Thank you, George; I thought I was going senile. I may still be!

Tom Lange
M<GT Repair
t lange

I have checked the parts manual and see that the springs are indeed only on the rear brakes.
part number 7H7927 steady spring QTY 4

Must have been a common mod at the time, I have them on my car and seen pictures of others with them installed, interesting! Next time I pull my front drums I will take some pictures for posterity.

John
J Scragg

My 55 TF has them front and rear. They were on it when I got it. PJ
Paul S Jennings

Definitely none on my 53 build TF, just had the whole front suspension out replacing the rubber boots. How long is the lifetime of these for fellow owners, is the type of packing grease used having an influence? I am a great advocate for use of moly grease wondering if the rubber life will be compromised.
G Evans

OK Tom. No You are not "going senile" :)

I'll give you that in the Moss Catalog and in the WSM, it does not show beehive springs on the front two brake shoes. But I have to ask, why do the back plates have the location for them and the shoes the holes as well? Also it was pointed out some time ago that the pictures in the WSD may be from a very older publication - just duplicated later and not redone.

Given that the parts are universal and you might expect some duplication of usage. Why would you not want to put anti-rattle springs on the front as well as the rears?

OK - There are two cylinders on the front not one, but the spring is there to keep the brake shoes against the back plate right? Is this not a function required on the font as well as the rear?
Mine were on the car and included with parts when I got it and put it all together. In 40 years I have not found any degradation off the brake system, have never experienced a failure and it stops on a dime with no pull either way. I have never heard a rattle or squeak for that matter and would contend they do a very good job.
JMHO
Rod

Rod Jones

Gentlemen,

Finished! Just as D J Walker suggested, I removed the pipes and wheel cylinder bolts, gave a little tap with a plastic hammer and bingo. They are off and on the bench. No Beehive springs there. I haven't got things cleaned up enough to see if there are provisions for them, but I will soon.

Thank you all for your suggestions and support. What a great place this is.

I will "try" to attach a pic.


Dan

DHN Nordstrom

Gentlemen - I misspoke when I said that there were anti rattle springs on the front brakes. Further checking revealed that there are none on our 53 TD, nor on either of the spare backing plates that I have stashed away. The Service parts list do not list any anti rattle springs on the front brakes nor do any appear in the Abingdon Spares catalog. That leave us John's picture of his front brakes with the anti rattle springs in place. I suspect that either someone put them on the front brakes of John's car or the backing plates are off another car - remember MOWOG Morris- Wollsey-MG Many of the parts were shared between these cars and I would suspect that even though they are interchangeable there could be minor differences in them. Cheers - Dave
D W DuBois

I'm glad it worked for you Dan, I too am restoring a TF 1250 and there is always someone on this site that can help with any problem.
Good luck with the car.
Regards, Don TF 4887
D J Walker

Dan,
Were (are) the shoes "frozen" to the drums??

Steve
Steve Wincze

Steve,

Yes, they were frozen to the drums. Bonded shoes, no rivets. Even after getting the drums off the car it took considerable hammering and prying to break them lose.

Dan
DHN Nordstrom

This thread was discussed between 15/11/2014 and 18/11/2014

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