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Mustang has been sitting in a field up on blocks. Put the car on the ground and the front tires are locked up, presuming it is the drums rusted to the brake shoes. How to a free the brakes up. Took the tires off in an attempt to pull the drums off but the drums don't budge. Any help appreciated.
 

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You might try removing the outer wheel bearing also. If the shoes are stuck to the drum, pulling the hub with the drum might work. It'll probably take a lot of pounding on the drum while prying it away from the backing plate. With luck they'll come loose.
 

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HEAT to the center hub area and around the studs. All the while tapping around the circumference of the drum. In my experience, the drum hub being a tight tolerance relative to the bearing hub, is the culprit. Over time, bits of rust settle there and fill in what ever space, thus, not allowing drum hub to release. Perhaps a good over-night soaking with a CRC, Kroil, ATF mixed with a little Acetone, these are all good.
It's unlikely the shoes are stuck to the drum, unless, someone in the past jambed the brakes and they stuck?But then, anything is possible.
 

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Loosen the shoes from the back with the adjuster and then give the drum a whack, should free them up.
 

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Sometimes the metal tabs on the brake shoes rust to the contact surfaces on the baking plates. Try tapping the rear of the backing plates with a rubber mallet.
 

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Soak the hell out of everything with a good penetrating oil for starters. PB blaster and WD-40 are trash. I use CRC Ultra-Screwloose and it worked on a guys rusted iron-aluminum drums & spacers. It's opened 50 year old bolts with ease. Keep whacking it with hammers, spray more and apply heat if all else fails. Only cut stuff off as a last resort. But you'll prob end up needing all new brake hardware, repack bearings and maybe even backing plates. Don't forget to clean and lube the heck out of the backing plates when going back together.
 

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Loosen the shoes from the back with the adjuster and then give the drum a whack, should free them up.
Also, there's a rubber grommet for the adjusters. Poke or pull that rotted thing out if it even remains. spray penetrating oil into the drums and hardware. Then as from the outside, hammer away.
 

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Very interesting. I had this happen on my '66 quite a few years ago, after it had been sitting in my garage for a few years without having been driven, and then, just a week ago on my '59 Retractable which had been sitting in storage for over 20 years, and had to be moved for the storage units to be renovated.
On the Mustang, it turned out that a wheel cylinder had leaked, and the brake shoe linings absorbed the fluid and expanded, "freezing" the drum. On the '59, it was just age from sitting so long, and the drums had rusted, and kept them from turning on the linings.In both cases, the first thing to do is to crank the brake adjuster down as low as it will go (opposite to what you would do to adjust the shoes for wear). On earlier cars like my '59, this is pretty easy to do. However, on the Mustangs, they have self adjusters, which by design are made to go only one way ; to tighten the shoes (see attached picture from Shop Manual). It will be necessary to insert a small screwdriver blade or punch, through the adjusting hole on the backing plate, and push the adjuster away from the adjusting wheel while you also have the adjusting tool through the hole, and turn the adjusting wheel to loosen the shoes (there are videos on line showing this).
Once you have the adjuster as loose as it will go, see if the drum will now turn. If not, then remove the axle nut and bearing, and remove the drum. To remove the drum, you'll need a slide hammer. There is an accessory made for slide hammers that fits over the wheel hu
Brakes.JPG
b and is then bolted with the lug nuts to the drum. As I didn't have this, but did have the Axle puller accessory, I used it. Being rather flat, I could only attach it to the drum with one lug nut, so I had to move it around several times after wacking with the slide hammer so that I'd get a somewhat even pull on the drum.

A rear drum presents other problems. It is very common for the inside of the drum to have become rusted to the axle flange. So, if after turning the adjusting screw as loose as it will go, the drum still doesn't turn (be sure that the emergency brake is released and the transmission is in neutral), then soak around each wheel stud and the center hub with penetrating oil. Then tap all around the drum and around the studs with a hammer to try to loosen the drum. If it still won't turn or come off, then try the heat with a propane torch, again tapping around the drum. If this still hasn't loosened the drum, then the only other option (other than destroying the drum), is to use a drum puller. A 3 jaw puller may work, but only if the lugs on the arms are small enough to get behind the drum. The old drum pullers had 5 arms, each being thin enough to get in between the backing plate and the drum, but the newer ones only have a single bar with two arms on them, and are not inexpensive to buy. If you get to the point where you need a drum puller, hopefully you can find a place that will loan or rent one to you.

Hope this helps. Let us know your results.

Bob
 

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In the front, you could pull the bearing cap off and remove the nut. Now only rust holds the hub/drum on. You can easily grind hold down pins flange from the rear of the backing plate. Wheels cylinders are 2 bolts. I put wrong, larger adjusters in the front once and they were jammed very tightly.
 

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I try to let the weight of the car help. With the wheel still on, jack the car up some and take the outer wheel bearing out. Replace just the washer and nut and let the car down. Repeat for the other side. This is assuming you have a chain and a truck to pull the car around a bit. Do so and see if something doesn't come loose.
This just to get the car out of the field and on a trailer. All the stuff inside the front brakes is widely available very likely all needs replacing anyway.
Another approach is like has been said already, cut the brake pad pins and remove the drum somehow. The drag with a truck method may not work but considering the weather around here lately, I'd rather minimize the time out in a field myself. I had one where the brake shoe material stuck to the drums so bad the material peeled off the shoe backing plates. Later on I tried to knock the brake material off the drums with a hammer and chisel. Didn't take too long to give up on that and be thankful new drums were available. I picked up a Honda once that had sat about a year with the parking brake on. Dragged it screaming halfway down the driveway before both wheels went pop-pop and the shoes released. That one worked fine later, tires flat spotted a little though. And I've fought with a bunch of drums in between. A big hammer would be what all those had in common.
Good luck with it!
 

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HEAT to the center hub area and around the studs. All the while tapping around the circumference of the drum. In my experience, the drum hub being a tight tolerance relative to the bearing hub, is the culprit. Over time, bits of rust settle there and fill in what ever space, thus, not allowing drum hub to release. Perhaps a good over-night soaking with a CRC, Kroil, ATF mixed with a little Acetone, these are all good.
It's unlikely the shoes are stuck to the drum, unless, someone in the past jambed the brakes and they stuck?But then, anything is possible.
That is a good strategy for rear drums, which are supposed to slide off the axle flanges. For front drums, however, not gonna happen. The front drums are held in place by the studs, which are pressed in on a hydraulic press. The front drum and hub assembly must be removed as a piece. Removing the outer bearing and grinding the heads off the two retaining "nails" is the only way. Sometimes they are so rusty that prying the drum will pop the spring end of the "nail" will release them.
 

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I had this happen to my 69 Coupe, one of the rear brakes was rusted to the rear drum from sitting for a couple years. I raised the car up on jack stands & removed the wheel & using a small 5 lb sledge hammer I kept beating on the drum & using a pry bar little by little it started to free up. It took a while but I eventually got the stuck drum off.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks for all the help, I took the bearing out and then took a piece of wood and started hammering away on the back side of the drum and eventually both of them came off. I adjusted the brakes and now the car rolls around so I can start the restoration process.

Thanks
 
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