Monday, April 30, 2018

Old School Mechanical Engineering

Working on the rear brakes of my MGB yesterday, I ran into an interesting problem. I needed to remove four nuts from the right rear drum so I could remove the drum and get at the brake shoes. The car has wire wheels, so the wheel obscures the nuts. Removing the wheel allowed the hub to spin freely as the emergency brake wasn't working on that wheel and engaging the transmission didn't make a difference, making me wonder about that whole thing*.

In any case, with the hub spinning freely, I couldn't remove the nuts. I needed a way to lock the hub in place. I took some rope and tied it to the body up around the front. I took the other end of the rope and looped it around one of the nuts, like so.

It worked conceptually, but the execution left a bit to be desired. I ended up breaking two ropes doing this. I then went to Lowe's and bought some chain. I haven't tried again, but I'm going to give it a try tonight.

* - With the visual acuity that comes of hindsight, the transmission mustn't have been fully engage, otherwise the rear wheels wouldn't have moved. I think. Another thing to try tonight.


Mostly Nothing said...

A breaker bar between two studs and held by the ground.

But really an air compreesor and impact driver is the way to go. Maybe some heat from a torch first.

Can't really tell but looks like the other rear wheel is off the ground too. So that's why it will spin. There's nothing holding 2 of 3 ends of the differential.

Almost drove my MG today. But rain came in the morning.

ligneus said...

Difficult to say from the pic but couldn't you just put a bar under one nut and above the next and push down on it while pulling up on the wrench? Also heating the nuts with acetylene does the trick! Heating to red hot I mean, don't think it hurts the steel from which they're made.

K T Cat said...

A breaker bar braced on the ground is a brilliant idea. I kept thinking about how to keep the wheels from turning by keeping the nuts from going up or sideways, I never thought about keeping them from going down. I have some scrap lumber that can be cut to the proper length and will do a splendid job.

MN reveals how many spots of ignorance I have about cars. Thanks for that tip. Of course that makes sense now.

As for an acetylene torch, I don't have one. Clearly this is the reason to go buy one. More tools! Yay! :-)