Hints and Tips - Austin 7 Brakes 2

My 1928 chummy has had the Girling Braking system from the later ('37-on) Rubies fitted. The front axle is the late axle with the heavy radius arms to take the higher braking forces that are generated (it's all relative - it's not much to begin with and it isn't great now). The rear axle is a '31 centre (long nose with bolt-on torque tube) with modified outer tubes to take the Girling back-plates (I don't know who did this but I suspect it was Vince Leek).

One problem with these brakes is that the springs that pull the shoes off the drums are located on pegs on the shoes. The force of the springs is pulling off centre and has a tendancy to twist the brake shoes, particularly, as was the case on my car, if someone has leavered up the clips that hold the shoes down in order to be able to fit them. The result is that the shoes only bear a corner, wear quickly and considerably reduce braking eficiency.

The solution shown me by the Austineers is to remove the pegs and fit a set of springs that locate in the holes once occuped by the pegs. The force of the springs pulls much more on the centre-line and the twisting effect is reduced.

Guy Weatherall

Jan 1999

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