59 pan frt brake spring hard to stretch

I'm having trouble mounting the front brake shoes on my 1959 FLH

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neilw
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59 pan frt brake spring hard to stretch

#1

Post by neilw » Fri Oct 12, 2018 4:09 am

I,m attempting to replace the front brake shoes on my 59 pan. I have both Clymers 1948-1965 manual, and Harleys 1959 - 1969 Service manual.

Neither one explains just how to mount the front brake shoes , they casually mention installing the top spring then placing the shoes in the
backing plate with the brake cam assembly all ready in place in the backing plate.

if I lay the shoes in the backing plate as described I cant stretch the lower spring anywhere near to the spring mounting pins in the shoes.

I had another idea, I hooked up the top and bottom spring before trying to put them in the backing plate, I had the top mounting stud in place at the top of the shoes.
It was a real struggle to stretch the lower spring ,even without the cam being between the bottom of the shoes.

Now the shoes are joined with the 2 springs ,and top stud in place , but I cant budge the bottom of the shoes apart to fit the cam in between them. Not even a fraction pulling with both hands .

I hope some one can tell me what I'm doing wrong .
I have new shoes ,and they are identical to the old ones .same springs and everything else .


Thanks , Neil



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Re: 59 pan frt brake spring hard to stretch

#2

Post by Gotnoclass » Fri Oct 12, 2018 6:59 am

Use the cam stud as leverage to stretch the spring and snap the top spring in place.
Takes a couple of times

neilw
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Re: 59 pan frt brake spring hard to stretch

#3

Post by neilw » Fri Oct 12, 2018 7:37 am

Thanks , I'll give it a try .
That aint what the book says .

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Re: 59 pan frt brake spring hard to stretch

#4

Post by Excalibur » Fri Oct 12, 2018 9:04 am

If you are still struggling, I'm 90% sure I gripped the spring hook with a small 4" pair of vise grips and snapped it into place that way. It's been a couple of years since I did it and the memory isn't what it once was... Good luck.

neilw
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Re: 59 pan frt brake spring hard to stretch

#5

Post by neilw » Fri Oct 12, 2018 10:37 pm

I have 2 springs holding the brakeshoes in place. both springs are identical.
It is impossible to stretch the 2nd spring into place.

What I finally did was got a 5 inch threaded 3/8 inch bolt with nut turned half way up the threaded part , then put a 1/2 inch deep socket over the threaded end of the bolt , and wedged the assembled spreader invention between the shoes . By turning the nut out toward the socket, pressure was put on the shoes ,and I got the can in place ,and looking good . ( prisoner used this method to spread bars on prisons).

BUT , I don't remember having this kind of problem when I took the brakes apart a decade or so ago.

Both springs are identical, however I have discovered a smaller diameter spring which I'm wondering if maybe I have the wrong spring installed .

I'm building a 59 out of 2 basket cases , one is a 1961,the other 1959, so I have lots of duplicate parts .

I should mention that I first experimented by installing the top spring with the shoes on the top stud , and installed the lower spring ( after a half hour fight with a screwdriver getting the spring in place ) leaving the cam out.

I thought maybe I could somehow force the shoes apart enough to get the cam in place.
I grabbed a shoe in each hand and strained to separate them, The best I could do was get a little clicking sound as the shoes snapped back together after I separated them 1/00 of an inch or less ( about the thickness of a cigarette paper) .

I'm thinking I did something wrong or have the wrong springs, anytime something as hard as this arises Harley has a specialty tool to use , but since none is mentioned I'm seriously questioning this.

The brake lever is easy to pull to apply the brakes , that seems normal, but I still have my doubts .
I think I'll look up the part number of the springs ,and see if they are the same.

Neil

neilw
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Re: 59 pan frt brake spring hard to stretch

#6

Post by neilw » Fri Oct 12, 2018 10:42 pm

Please disregard the above whining about my not getting the shoes mounted easily .
I just looked up the parts and the lower spring is the small one I discovered after installing the 2 spring that were meant only to be on the top ..
That's from having parts all mixed up .

neilw
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Re: 59 pan frt brake spring hard to stretch

#7

Post by neilw » Fri Oct 12, 2018 11:22 pm

Correction … I mistakenly looked at the exploded view of a side car brake system, the 2 springs are not the same .
So after installing the lighter spring I looked at another parts book and this time it was for a non side car model, both springs on my front brake are the same ..part number 41835-57 ..
I think I need a break before dismantling them again and starting over … At least I have my bar spreader to make things easier .

I still don't see how these 2 springs can be installed without a special tool .
I just had a thought .. What if the smaller spring has a mate ,and I need to locate it .
Maybe I have been using side stand springs ..
I don't have the side stand on yet , I better go have a look .. ( and a long break)

Just looked in my book , I think they may be jiffy stand springs I have used …

I have my 91 springer in the garage ,I'll have a look at what it has .

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