Jump to content

1950 Plymouth Full Brake Kit...


Recommended Posts

Hey all, so I got my first serious disappointment with my new 50 Plymouth...  Hopefully but doubtfully my last.  I am researching full brake kits now since most if not all of the parts on the car are shot.  I was sold the car being told all it needed was new drums and shoes and that the master cylinder was installed new a couple years ago.  It turns out that the drums are more than likely not usable and the master cylinder may not be either.  To top it all off the place I got the car from forgot to ship the brake parts with the car when it got trailered up here.  Well guess it serves me right for buying the car with no brakes.  So now I am on the lookout for a full brake rebuild kit, any suggestions?  I have found several on Ebay and a few other websites, but not sure exactly what route to take until the parts get dellivered in the next few days up here to my mechanic from the place of purchase...  Yay.  I do have a 4 door Special Deluxe 50 sitting here that has been sitting for 15 years, do any of you think that the parts off that car will still be in good enough shape to use on the new one so I don't have to buy all new stuff?  If I was to buy new parts what parts take priority over others?  Thanks  in advance.  Any and all options/opinions are appreciated.

Ed

Link to post
Share on other sites

I would seriously consider a disk conversion for the front if the drums need replacement.  Not a whole lot of cost difference if you need drums, cylinders, shoes and maybe even bearings.

 

Some original type parts are available from Rock Auto.  That's a great place to start as they have the best lookup software on the net and you can find part numbers to further your search.

Edited by kencombs
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, edrendek7777 said:

Hey all, so I got my first serious disappointment with my new 50 Plymouth...  Hopefully but doubtfully my last.  I am researching full brake kits now since most if not all of the parts on the car are shot.  I was sold the car being told all it needed was new drums and shoes and that the master cylinder was installed new a couple years ago.  It turns out that the drums are more than likely not usable and the master cylinder may not be either.  To top it all off the place I got the car from forgot to ship the brake parts with the car when it got trailered up here.  Well guess it serves me right for buying the car with no brakes.  So now I am on the lookout for a full brake rebuild kit, any suggestions?  I have found several on Ebay and a few other websites, but not sure exactly what route to take until the parts get dellivered in the next few days up here to my mechanic from the place of purchase...  Yay.  I do have a 4 door Special Deluxe 50 sitting here that has been sitting for 15 years, do any of you think that the parts off that car will still be in good enough shape to use on the new one so I don't have to buy all new stuff?  If I was to buy new parts what parts take priority over others?  Thanks  in advance.  Any and all options/opinions are appreciated.

Ed

 

I feel your pain. 🤔

 

My P15 had extensive brake work done five years before I purchased it but it needed a complete brake rebuild. After also replacing the complete fuel system and much of the electrics I have come to the conclusion that an old car shouldn't be purchased unless prepared to repair/replace nearly all the systems.....regardless of claims by the seller. I'm also convinced complete system overhaul is better than piecemeal repairs on old components.

 

There are no shortcuts when it comes to brakes. I suggest you replace ALL the brake lines when you redo the brakes. If you keep the single chamber master cylinder you are only one small leak away from being a passenger in a brakeless missile......

 

Hang in there...after the financial pain you will have a car that is fun to drive and own!

Edited by Sam Buchanan
Link to post
Share on other sites

It boils down to the goals you have in mind for this vehicle. Do you want a perfect restoration, or just a fun and reliable driver, or something else all together?

 

I'll echo the comments above - disc brakes up front, dual chamber master cylinder, maybe even go ahead and do an axle swap out back to get better gearing, better brakes (newer drums with readily available parts, or disc brakes).

Link to post
Share on other sites

OK, so this seems like a lot more work then I was hoping for.  I was honestly just trying to get the regular OEM brakes working and in order, even if I had to buy a new brake kit.  But if disc are the way to go up front then I will atleast consider that.  Fairly simple conversion for the front from drum/shoe to disc?  I am assuming not.  I would think that I am not going to be driving this a ton, but more for fun.  So stopping is important but not sure at this point I want to get into all this.  Unless now is the time to do it since I am possible redoing all the brakes anyways...

Ed

Link to post
Share on other sites

Factory Parts look here: https://www.oldmoparts.com/parts-service-brakes.aspx

 

If you want to go discs up front: http://rustyhope.com/site/

 

There are several different dual chamber master cylinders that have been adapted. I don't know if anyone has a "perfect" choice for that. There are of course other vendors for parts than those I gave you links to. I have the Rusty Hope setup on the front of my P15 with no issues - but I bought it that way, so I can't speak directly to specifics of the install (seems VERY straight forward, but I am pretty handy, so.... it depends on the skill level of the individual doing the work).

Link to post
Share on other sites

The issue is cost and safety.

The older mopars are really not that popular, if it was a chevy or ford, you could buy any part at a reasonable cost .... just finding drums, you are limited to used parts sent ups to your location, hope you can make them work. Then you have to deal with brake shoes, hope you have good cores and can find a old school shop to re-line them.

For the era, many claim mopar had the best brakes available .... they are not easy to setup and adjust, they require special tools no longer made or used today.

Then with a single master cylinder, as stated above, one leak in the system and you got nothing.

 

For the money you spend on the above brake system, you can buy a disk brake conversion kit, bolt it on.

I bought the rusty hope kit, it is a simple kit with the bracket to mount the rotors on .... requires you to use a drill and enlarge 2 holes for bigger bolts.

Then it supplies you with a detailed list of parts and napa part numbers for the off the shelf parts you can buy to put it all together.

Also there is scarebird kits, I hear you do not need to drill the holes larger and people are satisfied.

 

Just buying the tool to pull the rear drums, you could buy a bone yard explorer rear with modern drums and 3:73 gears for the freeway.

You will need to grind off the spring perch mounts, tractor supply sells new perches for $20, weld them on where they are needed.

 

Lots of options for the master cylinder ...

 

There are options to rebuild factory brakes, unless going concourse resto, now is a good time to upgrade them. And the upgrade will likely be cheaper and safer if you can do the work.

 

Certainly worth looking at the brakes on your parts car, might be enough to get you going, then upgrade later.

Edited by Los_Control
Link to post
Share on other sites

The person who sold you the car should ship those brake parts to you, maybe if you offer to split the cost of the shipping they will do it.

 

Question the repair shop as to the extent of their knowledge on your cars brake system. They will need to know what the maximum diameter the drums can be turned to. You can get new wheel and master cylinders as well as brake lines, hoses, springs and shoe retainers.

 

If you pay someone to customize your car you will most likely incur some custom prices, that's why most people do it themselves. I know you stated in an earlier post that you really don't have the time or inclination to learn and do this work yourself so it's likely to become quite expensive.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Lots of suggestions about how to swap out brakes, rear ends, etc, but the owner stated up front he is not disposed to work on this car himself. This has created an awkward situation. If the car had been close to driveable as advertised, this may have been a good ride for him.....until the next mechanical issue popped up. But to have a shop replace brakes, rear end and the fabrication involved is going to double the cost of the car (I saw the sales ad). He will then have a driver but be upside-down financially. Being upside down is one thing if you enjoy working on the car (cheap therapy!!), but quite a different animal if writing big checks to someone else.......

 

Tough spot to be in and I feel for him. My suggestion would be to fix the stock brakes, get it as safe as it would have been in 1950, then drive the car and decide if it is going to be a long-time endeavor. If the car endears itself to him then future upgrade/repair expenses will be easier to justify.

 

Best wishes, friend!

Edited by Sam Buchanan
Link to post
Share on other sites

unfortunately, in this hobby, if ones does not do a goodly bit of their own work being upside down in the car is almost guaranteed from the get go...none of the above  mentioned is in anyway hard.  The brake kits today can be a simple bolt on, brake master the same.  As for the rear axle...there will be a bit of welding in relocating the perches.  Hopefully the owner has a few friends in the old car circle that if not able to assist, know who can and can be trusted to do quality work for affordable costs.

Edited by Plymouthy Adams
Link to post
Share on other sites

Working on my neighbors car last month, 1954 ford, all original except it has a modern 5.0 EFI with AOD trans. Very quick, but has factory drum brakes and a single master cylinder.

My job was to fix the cooling system, it all needed to be replaced ... Owner bought the car as is and was never able to drive it because it overheated.

I charged him $200 to get it running ... but he lets me drive the car anytime I want  ;)

 

Soon as we get it running and put a few miles on it, the brakes absolutely suck.

Step on them and it pulls to the left, seems to have good pedal but then they start to fade ... slam on them, and besides a handful keeping it in your lane, they squeak.

Would be a bit skeery driving it in rush hour traffic on the freeway, sure will smoke the tires though  :P

 

But this is a ford, they are easy to get parts, and simple to work on .... mopar is not easy for either one.

This ford is going to get a disk brake conversion next. Drum brakes always need to be adjusted or maintenance.

Just about the 3rd time you finally get them right, and ready for new shoes again and start over.

 

Most people do not have the tools or the knowledge to setup mopar brakes properly, but you can get the help here if you ask. My rear brakes have 2 slave cylinders, and you adjust the toe and heel of the brake shoes to fit your drums, you need the correct tool to shave the shoes to the right arch to fit the drums first.

 

Done properly, they almost would match performance of small disk brakes .... very few people know anything about the process anymore.

 

Look at the brake parts on your parts car, you can put your worn out drums back on the parts car to keep it moveable.

Maybe you can hire a mechanic to come over and pull the parts off and do the work ... then take the parts to the shop.

Your existing mechanic can then inspect, and possibly make them work for you. Good enough you can drive around town. If a spring is bad, at least he has one to look at, and can match it up with a new one that would work?

As PA said above, do it once, bypass future headaches.

Me, I do my own work, still have plans to make the original brakes work ... even though I have the rusty hope kit on the shelf, update later as I feel the need.

 

Welcome to the ugly duckling club, price we pay to be different from the rest.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I’ll pitch in my 2 bits. I own a ‘53 with stock brakes. I can tell you that for my needs they are adequate. I have rebuilt them as needed myself. I installed new wheel cylinders. New rear steel brake lines. All new flex hoses.  Rebuilt master cylinder. Shoes and drums were re-used. I built my own brake adjustment tool.  The brakes are set up well now and provide decent braking. I’m not ripping down the interstate mind you. 

 

If I had to pay someone to do all this work I would likely not own an old car.  I do all my own labor where possible. I work too hard to earn, and keep as much as I can for myself.  You indeed can end up very upside down, very quickly if you are paying for mechanical repairs and maintenance.  Many of us know, we’ve likely spent more than our cars would likely sell for today. Just adding together new parts and the car original purchase price probably.

 

A modern rear axle sounds really good. Front discs too. Paying someone to do it? Not part of my finance plan. Repairs in smaller chunks as I go along, allows me to enjoy my car, and the fruits of my labor each weekend while out cruising.  

 

Again, stock brakes, set up right, are fine. Keep your eye on the single reservoir master fluid level often. Stay on top of it and stay alive. If you want to set it, and forget it...Get your wallet out and pay the man to give you easy, reliable, convenient, brakes. 

 

 

Edited by keithb7
Link to post
Share on other sites

Honestly I am going to try to keep it stock with all the brake parts between the 2 cars. The guy is shipping me the brake parts so I'll see what I have in the next couple days. If I don't have what I need to make the car drivable then I will try to figure out what is best. I appreciate all the feedback. If things dont working will definitely try to do disc on the front. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Even if the parts car has been sitting for 15 yrs if you only want drum brakes then I'd remove the drums from it and get them checked for roundness and have them machined, brake wheel and master cylinders are available also...personally I'd be putting disc brakes on the front but as I'm a hotrodder thats my choice........and I would strongly suggest getting a Workshop Manual and Parts Book and read them cover to cover, even if you do only small jobs yourself you will be much better informed as to exactly what your car has and has not...........makes you in a better position to order work and confirm its done...........andyd

Edited by Andydodge
Link to post
Share on other sites

the parts to rebuild these are found daily and regardless of Bendix or Wagoneer...it is all China made....I put these on the rear new on my car 8 years ago.  I rebuilt the fronts and of course I have the correct tool for adjusting the brakes.  It is not that costly if done at home.  And done right, with the proper tool, good brakes that wear evenly and last a long time.  You can get good pedal with hit and miss adjustment but no peace of mind that they will wear evenly.   The rear axle upgrade is two fold, brakes that are easier to access and full floating self adjusting and get a better ratio that is friendly to today's improved highways.  This is your win win and while staying stock is good...why beat yourself up and pay dearly for higher fuel costs and face it...most here do not like to run the car at highway speed due to the 'sounding busy' of the engine with the lower gears in the rear.  

Link to post
Share on other sites
24 minutes ago, edrendek7777 said:

Honestly I am going to try to keep it stock with all the brake parts between the 2 cars. The guy is shipping me the brake parts so I'll see what I have in the next couple days. If I don't have what I need to make the car drivable then I will try to figure out what is best. I appreciate all the feedback. If things dont working will definitely try to do disc on the front. 

 

I totally understand and respect that decision.

 

For the record - I've put roughly 1500 miles on my P15, and much of that has been at highway speeds and in and around rush hour traffic. Disc brakes up front, Dodge Charger axle out back with drums and 3.55 gears, T5 5 speed transmission (for overdrive), 251ci engine out of a Desoto with dual carbs and dual exhaust. It starts up, it runs, drives, and performs well for daily driving activities. Runs straight down the interstate at 80mph if I want. I bought it to drive and enjoy and travel with. Since I have owned it less than a year and have been ironing out kinks in it (needed rewired, fuel pump issues, been sitting in a garage for some time), I think I'm doing pretty good so far.

 

All anyone on this forum will want to do is help you make the best decisions for you. Those decisions might be different than someone else might make. All we can do is provide advice and explanations as to how we ourselves decided based on what we are doing.

 

Good luck! I hope this brake job is quick and painless and you are enjoying your ride in short order!

Link to post
Share on other sites

I bought a '50 Plymouth that the flipper owner had just put all new parts in the brakes and a new master cylinder. It would sometimes grab the left really hard. I found the right side front brake was not put together correctly, both new wheel cylinders were leaking and the linings while brand new were no good. I ripped all of that out and put in a Scarebird conversion. Some Mazda parts, some Chevy parts and a few hours time, and it stopped better than it needed to. The kit wasn't cheap, but I bought OEM NOS Ford/ Mazda rotors for cheap and the S10 brake calipers and pads were really inexpensive

Link to post
Share on other sites

Ed,

 

I also feel your pain. I bought my 1939 Plymouth on-line. The mechanic who I hired to inspect it said the brakes worked great (his exact words). When the car was delivered 7 of the 8 brake shoes were rusted solid to the backing plates. I went all-original in working on the brake system and the results work well for me. I live in the hills of Vermont and using the car for touring and other long drives. If I didn't trust the brakes I would consider going to discs.

 

Pete

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Here’s my two cents for what it’s worth. When I bought my car about five years ago, it somehow passed the safety certification, but the first time I took it for a drive, it pulled so hard to the right, it popped the hood open!  I immediately took it to my mechanic, who repaired the brake system including relined brake shoes, re-surfaced drums and new wheel cylinders all round, some of which were leaking badly.  Everything else was checked thoroughly, including brake lines and the master cylinder, and the system was flushed and refilled with Dot5 fluid.  With new tires and the relatively few miles I put on the car each year (approximately 1500 city and highway driving) the original brakes work fine for me.

Edited by Rosco
Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.

Terms of Use