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brake drum shoes, which side?

2862 Views 12 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  Jim_Williamson
Just want to double check my work here not that my brake job is finished. When installing the shoes there is 2 sizes to each set. One has a bigger pad than the other. Correct me if I am wrong but the larger shoe goes in front and small shoe on back for both front and rear right (all drum brakes)? I took digital pics before I started, but can't tell from the pics. I was focusing more on the hardware. Thanks..
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IIRC You are correct.
 

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The smaller shoe is the primary and goes toward the front of the car, on both sides. This acts a wedge against the drum when you stop, forcing the longer secondary shoe into the anchor pin. The way you installed them is backwards.
 

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I agree, yours are assembled backwards! The short shoe goes on the forward side and the large shoe goes on the aft side. Note: my shop manual pictures don't help much because they show the right side of the car, and don't say which direction is forward.
 
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In the past the primary and secondary shoe used a different friction composition. The darker colored shoe always went toward the rear
 

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The shoe with the least surface area goes towords the front, the shoe with the most goes towords the rear.
 
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Another thing to keep in mind and to assure you are placing the correct shoes is to watch the one which mounts to the parking brake cable. It will be the shoe with the lever attached with the "c" clip. This will be the rear shoe for both sides.
 

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SHORT SHOE FRONT!
If you don't, just wait till you try & stop.
 
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