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95.5-2004 Tacomas & 96-2002 4Runners 4th gen pickups and 3rd gen 4Runners

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Old 06-27-2007, 08:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Rear brake adjustment question

I recently did the drums on my 4Runner. I adjusted them according to the reverse and e-brake but was wondering this:

Is reversing and repeatedly pulling the handbrake neccessary? I noticed that while normally reversing and tapping the brakes I can hear a "clink" in the rear which I would assume to be the self-adjusters...um...self adjusting.

So correct me if I'm wrong but could you simply do the SAME thing (rolling in reverse <5mph) and just tap the brake pedal instead of pumping the e-brake handle?
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Old 06-27-2007, 09:38 PM   #2 (permalink)
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no

The brake pedal just pushes the shoes apart, the ebrake pulls the arm that actually moves the spider gear that adjust the shoes.

I'm having a helluva time with mine right now. When I rebuild my truck in August I'm going over the brakes again completely and I'll be replacing the adjusters completely.

The sieze up easily in which case the brakes NEVER adjust and wear unevenly (side to side). Just something to be aware of when you're servicing your drums. While you have the shoes off pull the the adjust apart and lube it up good.
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Old 06-27-2007, 09:39 PM   #3 (permalink)
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another option is disc brake conversion..

I'd like to smack every engineer who insists on putting drums on the rear of a light pickup truck. Can someone say STUPID?!
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Old 06-27-2007, 09:42 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 06-27-2007, 09:44 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Compare the photo above to this one, you'll see how the parking brake actuates the brakes differently than your "pedal" ..

In the above picture, the guys thumb is on what you call the "Brake Piston" that pushes the shoes outward (and onto the wall of the drum).

Below that cable is your 'parking brake cable' ..that pulls to the right and that arm its attached to levers the shoes apart which pulls the arm that holds the spider gear from moving to be free and adjust. And it adjust 'downward'. The arm keeps the gear from tightening.


Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 06-28-2007, 08:43 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Ah, I see.

There's always alot of debates, especially with older gearheads about how to adjust the rear drums. My dad just believes that pulling the hand brake everytime will do the trick, but other sources state that the vehicle has to be in motion.

I lubed my adjuster, but forgot to do the other side. It's a little tougher to spin but rust isn't too much of a problem here in Texas so I'm not too worried ATM.
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Old 06-28-2007, 10:48 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Next time you take yoru brakes apart try it out. All you have to do is apply the ebrake...
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Old 06-28-2007, 11:39 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Speaking of taking them apart. how the heck do you take the rear drums apart???

I was trying to check them before i left on a trip and i could not get either side to come apart no matter how hard a pulled, proded or begged. I could get them to brake lose so i know that rust was not the problem (i am in Texas as well, bet you never could have guessed...;-) but it would still not comw apart. I tried losening the tensiner but still no go. I did the screw in the drum trick and still no go.

So how do you get them to release the rotor?
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Old 06-28-2007, 01:09 PM   #9 (permalink)
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In most cases tapping (hammer) the face of the drum around the perimeter will loosen it up a but and allow the drum to slide/wiggle off... sometimes a bit of WD40 at the base of the studs and the center of the "hub" can make all the difference
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Old 06-28-2007, 01:19 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Yep did all of that and although the hammer did give me a little movment not more than 1/4 inch. I kept pulling and i saw that it looked liek the pads would not let go of the rotor. At least that is the best i could tell.

It was free everywhere except inside where i could not see or free.
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Old 06-28-2007, 02:46 PM   #11 (permalink)
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You need to loosen the star nut on the brake cylinder, to retract the pads and slide the drum off. And when putting them back together always apply liberal amounts of Anti-Seize on the hub to brake drum mating surfaces.
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Old 06-28-2007, 02:57 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Star nut on the brake cylinder? huh?
You mean the line going into it? Allow air into it?

Your pads shouldnt touch the drum if your parking brake AND brakes are NOT engaged... that is in the perfect world. Usually a good hammering and a few scuffed fingers and a lot of cursing get the drums off.

Also, the toyota brakes adjust JUST by actuating the parking brake. You dont 'have' to do the reverse trick. You can actually 'see' this when you have the drum off. just actuate the parking brake with your hand (just push the lever inward on the back of the brake backing plate) and you can see how it adjusts the screw. Simple.



"Shoe clearance should be 0.6mm (.024")."

~ http://www.4x4wire.com/toyota/maintenance/rearbrakes/



Also, sometimes when the pads wear unevenly. Usually caused by old drums, or the pads are just getting worn.. But more commonly that adjuster jams you can get a 'clicking' noise thats not associated with the adjuster or parking mechanism its one shoe catching more than another. The shoes will click where they hit the backing plate. (usually the at the base where the spring holds them together.. on the pivot end of the shoes). Also if the axles are warped or the runout is excessive the drum will hit the brake shoes unevenly and cause them to catch and skiff in a sense (makes the same clicking, kinda like the sound you could imagine from overextending a old creeky spring). The brake shoes are attached (losely, floating) to the backing plate while the drum is on the axle, like i said if runout is excessive the drum will cause the shoes to move around which causes other noises).FYI

I've experienced all of the above. I guess I've had my fair share of time working on these damn brakes.
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Old 06-28-2007, 03:16 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drew303 View Post
Star nut on the brake cylinder? huh?
You mean the line going into it? Allow air into it?

Your pads shouldnt touch the drum if your parking brake AND brakes are NOT engaged... that is in the perfect world. Usually a good hammering and a few scuffed fingers and a lot of cursing get the drums off.
No the star nut is there under the rubber cover on the backing plate of the drum, it's not exactly on the cylinder, it's bellow it, other drums have them on the arm that goes into the cylinder. You're thinking of the FLARE nut on the brake line.

The star nut is the adjuster, you have to (usually) back that off to get the pads over the lip that is worn in the drum after years of stopping.
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Old 06-28-2007, 05:09 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Speaking of taking them apart. how the heck do you take the rear drums apart???

So how do you get them to release the rotor?

There are two small threaded holes on the drum, in between the wheel studs. Simply screw in an M8 x 1.25 bolt and it will force the drums off as you screw them in.
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Old 06-28-2007, 06:40 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas_Ace View Post
Speaking of taking them apart. how the heck do you take the rear drums apart???

I was trying to check them before i left on a trip and i could not get either side to come apart no matter how hard a pulled, proded or begged. I could get them to brake lose so i know that rust was not the problem (i am in Texas as well, bet you never could have guessed...;-) but it would still not comw apart. I tried losening the tensiner but still no go. I did the screw in the drum trick and still no go.

So how do you get them to release the rotor?
Spray some WD-40 or PBlaster and loosen the star wheel. Facing the drum from the outside, I believe you turn it away from yourself and down. Then thread in the two bolts and alternate turning them. It will slowlu push the drum out.
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Old 06-28-2007, 07:04 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nismo Convert View Post
You need to loosen the star nut on the brake cylinder, to retract the pads and slide the drum off. And when putting them back together always apply liberal amounts of Anti-Seize on the hub to brake drum mating surfaces.
Good tip on the Anti-seize. I tryed the star nut in there a quite a few turns but nothing seemed to change. I could not even really tell if it was turning.

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There are two small threaded holes on the drum, in between the wheel studs. Simply screw in an M8 x 1.25 bolt and it will force the drums off as you screw them in.
Yep, tryed that as well, that is how i got the little i got. I didn't want to keep doing it because it was takeing a LOT of force to screw them in and it was still not getting them off. They would seem to come out a little but when i took the screws out the rotor would snap back to almost all the way back on.

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Spray some WD-40 or PBlaster and loosen the star wheel. Facing the drum from the outside, I believe you turn it away from yourself and down. Then thread in the two bolts and alternate turning them. It will slowlu push the drum out.
Tryed that except for the WD-40 but it was not seized where that would have done the trick.
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Old 06-28-2007, 08:25 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Good tip on the Anti-seize. I tryed the star nut in there a quite a few turns but nothing seemed to change. I could not even really tell if it was turning.
It's there with a spring, you will likely have better luck with an angled screw driver/prybar that fits in the hole there, this will take all the slack out of the spring, and allow you to rotate the start nut, to loosen, I believe you have to push down. This is how I did the rear brakes on my Corolla, and many cars I worked on when I worked for Ford. If you think you have loosened the star nut enough; push the drum back on, and try to pull it off straight.
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Old 06-29-2007, 05:11 AM   #18 (permalink)
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When screwing in the M8 bolts, try hitting the around the outside of the drum with a rubber mallet. The 'vibrations' from the blows will help loosen the shoe pressure on the drum. Hit the drum with good force, multiple times after every 1/2 turn of the bolts. This works every time for me and I find it easier than trying to loosen the adjuster mechanism.
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Old 06-29-2007, 06:09 AM   #19 (permalink)
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You have to release the little lever/spring/thingy to be able to adjust the brakes in a few turns to facilitate removal of the drum. Then you can either bang the drum or use the bolts to get it loose/off. You would benefit in using a brake adjuster tool and not a screwdirver if that is what you are using.
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Old 06-29-2007, 11:06 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
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It's there with a spring, you will likely have better luck with an angled screw driver/prybar that fits in the hole there, this will take all the slack out of the spring, and allow you to rotate the start nut, to loosen, I believe you have to push down. This is how I did the rear brakes on my Corolla, and many cars I worked on when I worked for Ford. If you think you have loosened the star nut enough; push the drum back on, and try to pull it off straight.
Yep i pulled the spring back (at least it felt like it). But no matter how many times I turned it nothing would losen up. I have done some rear brakes before but those rotors came right off with a little banging.

Quote:
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When screwing in the M8 bolts, try hitting the around the outside of the drum with a rubber mallet. The 'vibrations' from the blows will help loosen the shoe pressure on the drum. Hit the drum with good force, multiple times after every 1/2 turn of the bolts. This works every time for me and I find it easier than trying to loosen the adjuster mechanism.
Yep, this is how i got the little i got. I took one of them off again and i was able to get it about half way off but it was so hard and looked like it was bending something in there that i quit and put it back together.

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You have to release the little lever/spring/thingy to be able to adjust the brakes in a few turns to facilitate removal of the drum. Then you can either bang the drum or use the bolts to get it loose/off. You would benefit in using a brake adjuster tool and not a screwdirver if that is what you are using.
I do need to get a brake tool. So pretty much when it won't come get a bigger hammer? Sounds like a plan but i also don't want to brake something...
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