Getting the best from your hand brake

Chris

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We all know that the 90 hand brake can be a PITA so here's a little guide to getting it working well. Actually replacing the linings is a tricky little job and needs some patience and dexterity. But usually, the linings will last a long time. Milners do a replacement hand brake cable with fits beautifully and is much cheaper than OE. Always worth doing that too if you need an overhaul. A key part of the assembly is the bell crank lever. The hole in the middle and the pin can wear. This means that you have movement where you don't want it and you'll have the lever up around your neck before the brake works. You can weld it up and then re-drill it. Or you could speak to our resident part expert the Rt Hon Mr Rubinstein.



They are a drum in disc design. The outside is the main brake and the inner is the handbrake drum.
To start with slacken off the cable inside the cabin. You'll need a long reach 10mm socket and a spanner. I ground one down to make it thin enough.
The cable needs to be completely slack.

The with the wheels off, turn the hub until the hole that you can see though is at 6 O'clock. Use a torch to look through the hole. You will see a toothed cog wheel. With a flat screwdriver, flick this cog toward you and down until it stops. This will release the disc off the hub. You may need to whack it a bit as the disc can stick to the hub with time. Turn and hit, turn and hit. it will come off. Have a good look around inside and a bit of a clean if needed. Check the friction lining thickness on the shoe. Operate the bell crank lever on the back of the brake (attached to the cable) to make sure that the mechanism is free and moving. If it isn't then it's a strip down job. This is the Achilles' heel of the system. Likely as not, the off side one will be sticking.

OK if all is well, put the disc back on and tighten with two wheel nuts to centre the disc. Now wind the cog back the opposite way until it is tight. Try to move the hub back and forth to make sure that the shoes are centered. Just use a bar in the wheel studs. Right, now you need to look at how much movement there is in the bell crank lever on the back of the assembly. this is how much you'll need to take up before the shoes even move. There is a little flat faced bolt on the end of the bell crank with a lock nut. Adjust this until the movement has all but gone from the bell crank lever. Now back the cog off one click and the hub should be free to move again. Now, there is no slack in your system. All of the joints, swivels, guides etc in the cable must be free and moving - yes? No good if they are stiff. Now re tension the cable inside the cab until the wheels stop moving. Put a couple of clicks on the lever first if you like and tension it up - then when you drop the lever, everything will be slack. If you have one wheel that 'comes on' before the other, you can balance them with the little cog, but you shouldn't have to if everything is on the money. You need to be sure that there is no drag with the handbrake off or you'll be wearing your linings out and adding to your fuel load.

Make sense?

Chris
 

Chris

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Well, I have been messing with 90 hand brakes since my first P plater. Never got it quite right - well not for long. So this last time, I adjusted it differently. Hard against the stops and then took up the slack on the little pad headed bolt. What a difference. Even holds off road!

Go for it.

Chris
 

Chris

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Found a few pics to go with this.
A pair of angled needle nosed pliers is really useful for dealing with the shoe retaining springs. Don't take these to bits. Leave them in whole and flip them over the shoes when you put them back in.
IMGP3484.jpg


Here is the adjuster bottle screw.
IMGP3483.jpg


This is the bell crank. The hole in the middle can wear and will generally stick to the pin that it turns on.
IMGP3479.jpg

This is the adjuster that you need to move to take out the final slack in the mechanism
IMGP3480.jpg

And this bit's the part that gets really gunged up and solid,. It's alloy so be careful. Clean it well and get some grease in there. There is a rubber boot that fits over it. Clean that out and get some more grease in. The grease needs to keep the clart out and stop the pin from corroding again. If I could work in stainless, I would make replacement parts for these.
IMGP3478.jpg


But when it's all back together, cleaned and painted it should look like this.
Image061.jpg


Chris
 
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BlackWidow

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I did all the above and it worked a treat my hand brake was right on the money. Now the thing is after a day on the plains my hand brake travel got longer and longer but at least this time I did not loose the handbrake all together. I have not been back in there just yet but my thinking is that with all the water splashes the adjusters have wound themselves off a little.

I know alot of people say it is the cables stretching through articulation but, I think this is not so as when I did the winch training day Reinhards handbrake got to the point where it stopped working altogether and all his truck was doing was to have its hand brake put on and off a lot of times for the hand winch section.

My thinking is that due to severe temperature changes or lots of use that the adjuster un-winds itself, and to that end I am designing a little spring clip to prevent this from happening.

If you think that I am way off base with this one then let me know. We all know that the handbrake is a weak point on the 90 but as yet has stumped us all. I had a look at the 80s + 100s that attended the plain on Monday and it appears that they have the same set up as the 90s. Do you guys have the same problem with yours.

Chris your write up is excellent and doing it your way is the best way to go, it is the best my handbrake has been for a long time.

Steve
 

Chris

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Steve, I just don't know. Your synopsis of HB deterioration is spot on. I have a new cable , new shoes etc and it stays great until I go off road / articulate a lot, at any rate. Could it be unwinding? I dunno. Maybe we put it back in the other way around and see! How about a mark of tippex in there once it's set?

Did you get in touch with Scottish Pete about the bit of trim that you needed at the 4x4 show - was that Ecky that needed it. Pete is on here now.

Chris
 

BlackWidow

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Pete has already PM'd me about the bit, think it must of been Ecky but told him to try Tommo as he has a black 90 and was at the show. :oops:

When I get five mins I will strip the handbrake down again and mark it up as sugested. What I may do is, do it just before Lincomb and compare before and after, I should get loads of articulation and water splashes in that weekend. :D :D

Steve
 

Chris

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Hmmn. but which weekend IS this Steve? Not sure when it's going to happen. There are people working on it, but I am not seeing a date yet. We're still waiting for NFU at present. Better not hijack the thread though I guess as it's actually a helpful technical one. Will see if we are any closer tomorrow.

C
 

Rob

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BlackWidow said:
If you think that I am way off base with this one then let me know. We all know that the handbrake is a weak point on the 90 but as yet has stumped us all. I had a look at the 80s + 100s that attended the plain on Monday and it appears that they have the same set up as the 90s. Do you guys have the same problem with yours.
I have the same problem in my 80, seems every time i go off road it gets worse. I do find it odd that a car designed to go offroad has this kind of design flaw/fault. If this is a fault then it would be great to find a soloution before i go to Mongolia, where i will expect to do 3000-4000 miles offroad! It will need to be adjusted every day :shock:

Oh and i have a Manual
 

Andrew Prince

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Yes, I second what Rob says about the 80 - the handbrake is pretty poor. As mine is an auto, the handbrake doesn't get used other than at MOT time (or when the Missus decides to "warm up the drums" by leaving the handbrake on driving it back from Tesco :twisted: )
In fairness, I have not done anything to my handbrake (the 80, not the Mrs :roll: ) in 2 years and it got through MOT twice.

I know Ian basically has to completely redo the handbrake on his green 80 every time his MOT is due...

Come on, Steve - do a redesign that we can all fit to our LCs :mrgreen:
 

BobMurphy

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Just a quickie . .

If you find that the disk/drum won't come free with hammering (I was using a 2.5 club hammer and release oil to no avail) - Put two 8mm Set Screws (about 40mm long) into the two threaded holes in the drum and use them to extract the drum from the hub.

Worked for me (and its very satisfying to hear a loud 'clack' as the rust gives way :D )


This is what I mean:



DSCN5218.jpg




Help . . I've just posted my first 'techy' comment, I'm on a slippery slope now :shock:


Bob.
 

Chris

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Yeaaaaah! Bob's back with us. And a cracking first tip too. Remember that you must wind the shoes off fully first or they will catch in the inside of the drum and you will NEVER get them off.

Chris
 

BlackWidow

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Ok then today I went out and did the hand brake again. All I adjusted was the hidden screw in the drums, I wound them up so the shoes were hard on and then backed them off a touch so the disc could turn. Did this on both sides and when done I went and checked the hand brake travel, I found that the handbrake was back to where I had it set prior to going to the plain. :D :D

Conclusion is that the adjusters had un-wound themselves, it was not much but it makes a world of difference so it is off to the metal shop to make something up. If it goes according to plan it will only require 2 little holes drilled in the back-plate and two rivets to mount it.

Will keep you posted on my progress and testing.

Steve.

P.S. Welcome Bob...good tip there with the bolts.
 

adrianr

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Hi Bob

You could copy and paste all of your lovely tech write ups from the other forum to here if you wanted.

I reckon they would make a stunning addition to the tech write ups section.

Quite a project you took on with that one.

If you ever sell it I bet there would be a heck of a queue to your door, just from this forum.
 

BobMurphy

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adrianr said:
Hi Bob

You could copy and paste all of your lovely tech write ups from the other forum to here if you wanted.

I reckon they would make a stunning addition to the tech write ups section.

Well, maybe I'll re-write them sometime (I'll be able to miss out the wrong bits then :lol: ). Time is the enemy, though.

Bob.
 

BobMurphy

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In his write-up, 'Battered and Blue' was bemoaning the problems caused by having an alloy pivot block for the handbrake bell-crank levers.

He then showed a photo of one in perfect condition :lol:


I think this is what Chris was referring to :o



DSCN5339.jpg




DSCN5340.jpg




DSCN5344.jpg



Each of mine were held on with one bolt as the inner bolts had rotted away, leaving just a rusty stump in the alloy. I got them out with heat, but you will notice that one of the blocks is cracked as it is now so thin.

The pivot holes in the bell crank were oval as well.


Time to call on Ian Rubie again :(


Bob.
 

Chris

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Jeez Bob. Look have my truck. I'll get another. It's not fair that you should have to do this much. I'll go without for a bit.

That is shocking. I would order the pivot block, gaiter, bell crank, pin and all the clips.

Mine was 'factory' compared to that.

Chris
 

Rob

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that looks like its form medieval ages :lol: (well apart from the threaded bit)
 

BobMurphy

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Battered and Blue said:
Jeez Bob. Look have my truck. I'll get another. It's not fair that you should have to do this much. I'll go without for a bit. Chris

That'll be the one you are thinking of breaking / scrapping than :roll:

Thanks for the offer, but I already have five old(ish) cars to maintain (three of mine, plus two belonging to daughters that end up here for fixing).

We can have salt on our roads for six months of the year up here - cars need constant attention.


Bob.
 
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