Dragging Brakes

Dragging Brakes

I thought that some Dodge Class C Maintenance would keep me busy for the spring of 2009.  When we brought Buttercup home, it was raining to beat hell.  Other people might say that it was raining cats and dogs.  A phrase that came from merry old England when they had thatched roofs.  It was warm up there so the cats and dogs would go there to sleep.  Whenever there was a hard rain.  They would get out of the roofs, hence; Raining Cats and Dogs.  Well anyway that's how it was raining that day in March when we brought the Beautiful Buttercup home.  I called her Buttercup because that's what the license plate on the front said,"Buttercup".

The front is removed here for the new radiator and transmission cooler I had to install. But you can see the license plate with the name Buttercup.  You can't make these things up.
This page is about the dragging brakes.  When we started Buttercup up in Elkhart, Indiana.  She was a popping and a snapping.  I put her in gear and she did not want to move.  But when put her into reverse, she moved.  We backed her out of the shop and she moved on her own.  The brakes seemed as though they were always on.  My Brother-in-Law was with me.  He came to follow me in my truck for the exciting ride back.  He said, "Are we going to make it?"  I told him, "This is a Dodge, They might groan and grumble, but for the most part, they usually make it."
We gassed her up and set out for the forty mile drive in the rain.  It spit and sputtered and backfired on every acceleration, but the more we drove her more the better she ran.  She smoothed out and sounded okay.  We stopped in Middlebury, Indiana for a check.  You could smell the brakes and the lights were going dim, but she was still going.  We had twenty-five miles to go. I told my brother-in-law that we should be thankful for the rain because it was keeping the brakes cool.  That kept the odds of them catching on fire to a minimum.  The rain was slowing down and we were running on the battery, so I switched off the lights and told my brother-in-law.  "If she dies now, the tow bill will be small."  The odds of the battery going dead was great, but if the rain stopped, we could get another battery for the rest of the trip home.  She made it.  I never had to put my foot on the brakes.   She always stopped on her own.

When I started the brake work, the first thing I checked for was a rusted up emergency brake cable.  I found that the person before me had thought the same thing.  The emergency brake cables were cut.  Then I jacked her up to spin the wheels.  The drivers side rear was locked up.  The first thing I tried to do was loosen the adjuster.  Someone beat me to that too.  The serrations were worn flat.  They did the smart thing then.  They got rid of Buttercup and traded her for another motorhome.  My good deal was now looking like a lot of work.  I had to get the hub off.  I unbolted the wheel cylinder and broke the hold down pins.  a procedure that usually works, but the wheel would not even wiggle.  I was at a loss as to what to do.  I finally decided that I would drill on the adjuster until I could break it. 

It Worked
It Worked.

There were a few more problems.  It looked like the wheel had come loose and rubbed the inside of the Wheel Well.

Bad Lugs  Removed Studs
The Studs were shot and when I removed them The hub seperated.

Too Hard
I tried to install them with a 3/4 in ratchet, but I guess I was too old and weak.  I took it to the Napa Machine shop jobber and they used a one inch power socket to get them in.

Brakes are Done
Brakes are installed.  This is the other side.  I didn't get a picture of the completed difficult side.


The Job is done, but the engine still runs like crap.