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  • Flathead Ted's Brake Floaters

    What's everyone's opinion on this setup? Anyone using this?

  • #2
    I am using them and yes they do work quite well they are not a band-aid however they work if all of the brake system is in good working order, drums if they are the original steel most likely they are not good. Brake crossshaft is it worn can you get movement. I would first of all get the Les Andrews red book and read it it is one of the best tools out there to really help familiarize yourself with the mechanics of the model a. Check everything out maybe take some pictures, in our tech section Purdy has some great advice on brake set up I have followed his advice to the letter and my car stops like it had hydraulics and the mechanical system is fine no need to spend extra money. Hope this helps to get you started this could be a good winter project also make a checklist of the things to check and do on your car and you will be ready to go next spring.

    Comment


    • #3
      What Chief said X2
      Your system needs to be up to snuff for these to work as they are not a quick fix for other issues
      3 ~ Tudor's
      Henry Ford said
      "It's all nuts and bolts"


      Mitch's Auto Service ctr

      Comment


      • #4
        And I might add take your time and be meticulous, it will pay dividends in the end, also when pulling the rear hubs use a good tool, make sure that the brake arm levers in the backing plates are snug,free and no slop all of these must be right in order for the system to do it's job equally or one wheel will grab more than the others and make you think you have steering issues as well. Let us know how this works out for you plenty of smart people to help you here.

        Comment


        • #5
          A little play in the brake cross shaft is not a big problem because it gets adjusted out. Your real problems are in the backing plates. Having shoes fitted to the drums and properly centered are key to getting good brakes. You also need to have known good parts. Used wedges are a crap shoot since the advice over the years has been to file the worn areas. So you have a brake system that 4 different wedge shapes so you get 4 different application rates, how is that supposed to work?

          There is nothing wrong the with the original brakes system. All the problems are in how they are rebuilt.

          FWIW Brent Terry does not use Teds anymore. It really does nothing to actually improve the system. They can make marginal brakes seem much better, but there you are just improving poorly installed brakes.

          My take anymore.. If you do not have the tooling and skills then you are better off spending the bucks to have a quality shop make up drums and backing plates ready to bolt on and go. If you want to do it yourself then go and find a Barrett Brake Doktor and buy it. They only cost around $400 when you find one.

          Comment


          • #6
            Kevin your points are good you are right a little play is ok but not much I still will use the floaters, they do make the brakes self-energizing. What is a barret brake doktor? Thanks i like to hear of new things and now I am curious.FWIW I like Brents ideas and post great guy for sure. http://dtectinc.use.com/message-show...028edba03b9603
            Last edited by BNCHIEF; 10-08-2017, 06:31 AM.

            Comment


            • #7
              I do run the stock brake system and have good brakes...


              I remember some talk about removing the top spring in Ted's setup and many were having brake drag. They then reinstalled that spring to correct it, I think the install instructions said to leave it out.
              3 ~ Tudor's
              Henry Ford said
              "It's all nuts and bolts"


              Mitch's Auto Service ctr

              Comment


              • BNCHIEF
                BNCHIEF commented
                Editing a comment
                If you use the spring then you limit the self energizing effect on the front brakes, I had this dragging issue on mine I got the tape on installing teds floaters from the diablo A's they explained why this happened and how to correct it by a little grinding on a teds part that was hanging up on the shoe a little their tip worked i do not have the springs in and my brakes do not drag with purdy's tips my brakes work well and release with no dragging.

              • Mitch
                Mitch commented
                Editing a comment
                Chief
                Can you post the info on what part needs to be ground and how

              • BNCHIEF
                BNCHIEF commented
                Editing a comment
                Mitch i will try to get a blow-up should have taken pictures when I did mine and I will see what I can do and something I did that they did not mention.

            • #8
              The barrett brake doktor is a sanding disk that you set to the drum diameter and then sand the shoes using the axle as the center point. This makes the shoes the correct diameter and centered.

              https://www.garagejournal.com/forum/...ictureid=30988
              The H.A.M.B. is dedicated to spreading the gospel of traditional hot rods and customs to hoodlums worldwide.

              Comment


              • BNCHIEF
                BNCHIEF commented
                Editing a comment
                Thanks again Kevin I looked it up, a little video of it being used would be cool and thanks for the education.

            • #9
              I put a lighter top spring in my '30 Sport Coupe, with Ted's setup, as there was some extra drag without it. When I changed to '32 front brakes I switched it to use Ted's system. After finding a complete '35 front brake setup I will change that over to Ted's system also. Hardest part of the '35 setup was carrying all the parts from behind the stadium at Hershey to the orange field. Now if I can only find a place to use some LEDs in them.:rolling
              Last edited by bettlesr; 10-08-2017, 10:23 AM.
              1930 Sport Coupe, 1965 Lotus Elan

              Comment


              • #10
                Thanks guys, My brakes are supposed to be good to go, as the roadster is fully restored by a known good guy. Sat for a year before I purchased it. I am learning all I can about these beasts and will pull drums this winter and make sure all is good to go. I have a little pull to the left and some squeal now. But stops fine.

                Comment


                • Mitch
                  Mitch commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Maybe an Adjustment or something hanging.. Make sure your linings are chamfered top and bottom.

              • #11
                Squeal could mean some glazing pulling to one side could be adjustment, take it apart show us some pics and maybe we can help make them even better.

                Comment


                • dmdeaton
                  dmdeaton commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I will do that, but will be a couple months before I have time to get to it. Very busy with work this fall and winter.

                • BNCHIEF
                  BNCHIEF commented
                  Editing a comment
                  No rush you have all winter but this will be a good opportunity to learn about your car and for what it is worth I was where you are a year ago and I asked a lot of questions just ask Mitch he helped me immensely, so we will pass the know along to others and that is why this hobby is fun not just reliving history.

                • dmdeaton
                  dmdeaton commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I have worked on everything all my life, for some goofy reason. Have always taken time to research why and how things work before tearing into.

              • #12
                On another note, I haven't noticed a grease seal on the front hubs? I see the rear has them in the exploded views. I should probably have new ones around before pulling drums.

                Comment


                • Mitch
                  Mitch commented
                  Editing a comment
                  The front does not originally use seals
                  Just baffles that are on the spindles

                  It maybe worth your while to buy the rear seal driver. Yes it can be installed without it, but whats nice is it sets the proper depth and wont bend it.
                  Me being a tool guy i have one

                • BNCHIEF
                  BNCHIEF commented
                  Editing a comment
                  x2 also the right grease and change the oil in the differential since you do not know what the previous owner put in it unless he gave you some ditto for transmission as well.

                • dmdeaton
                  dmdeaton commented
                  Editing a comment
                  cannot have too many tools, original owner passed away and I have a large folder of receipts, no notes. But live close to the fellow who restored it. Owner did a lot of work also.

                • CarlG
                  CarlG commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Owning a Model A is really just an excuse to buy more tools

              • #13
                Randy Gross sells the soft bonded shoes, chamfered and arced. I read on here somewhere I think that some do not like the bonded shoes? Cracks?

                Comment


                • Mitch
                  Mitch commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I have always used woven riveted, but with that being said there has never been a negative report about Randy's bonded linings that i can recall. He seems to have a good formula going and certainly supplies many of those style linings to the hobby. He is top notch..I don't feel you could go wrong either way

                • BNCHIEF
                  BNCHIEF commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I might add that cracks in bonded shoes can be heat related, such as over using them slow down sooner let the engine braking work for you as well light touch on the pedal and things will be fine. Randy works for a company that is in this line of work so he has access to engineering that a small guy can't afford.

              • #14
                I use the Randy Gross system and prefer the lined over the woven for one reason I do not have to buy a rivet tool to re-rivet these and the shoes are new . Randy arcs them to the drum and sends them to you that way together do not mix them up he is also very quick on turn around and i would buy from him again. On the other hand the woven is also fine as well if it gets wet I think your stopping power could be reduced more then the bonded shoe until they dry out. Mitch's woven lining is however period correct and he shows his cars as well, either would work it is mostly your choice. On another note and this is for Mitch's question. If you look at the plates in the picture that has the pointed tips like horns on a bull these are in the brake back and work as a track for the rollers the bottom side of that plate touches the back side of the metal brake shoe the radius where these two contact is slightly wrong and will wedge the brake shoe a little causing the shoe to drag reconfigure this radius so that it does not grab the shoe and the dragging will be gone. This is a tip i got from the video that the diablo a's put out on installing ted's floaters and it is a good video. The first thing to do of course is dismantle what you have, The previous owner of my car used white lithium grease in everything it was hard and dry and did nothing for lubrication. My parts were all good so I cleaned everything up I use mobil 1 synthetic grease. The rear end is a totally different story. Randy will tell you if your hubs are bad for starters he will also send you back a tub of fibrous grease to use on the rear hub and bearings it stays in place and does not liquify. There are some places where a high pressure grease if needed Mitch can elaborate on that. Sometime maybe a lube chart with recommended lubes suitable for your car but that is subject to opinions and a whole different can of worms. If your tracks are worn I would talk to randy about just replacing them for you now would be the time. Brakes are like a foundation for a house if the parts are worn your building on a bad foundation and fixing nothing do not skimp on brakes it is the most important component on your car not only for your safety but for those who travel with or around you. Ok I am done now.
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                This gallery has 1 photos.
                Last edited by BNCHIEF; 10-10-2017, 06:16 AM.

                Comment


                • Dennis
                  Dennis commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Do you use the square head pins on your rear shoes?

                • BNCHIEF
                  BNCHIEF commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Yes dennis i do been out of pocket with a new grandbaby

                • Dennis
                  Dennis commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Congratulations! I struggled with the square pins so I put them away and used the round head pins. Only use the Ted's adjusters on the rears. They lock up just fine on the rears.

                • Mitch
                  Mitch commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Congratulations Chief on the precious new addition and thanks for the explanation on the grabbing situation. I wonder why Ted does not correct his parts or even put some literature in the kit explaining this

                • dmdeaton
                  dmdeaton commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I bought diablo's video also. Haven't watched it yet. Thanks for the tips

                • BNCHIEF
                  BNCHIEF commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Do not let the picture intimidate you Dennis the fronts work very well and contribute a lot to the whole system, after seeing your work you would have no problem at all. And I would always be happy to help if needed. I am real good at staying out of the way but keeping my mouth shut is a goal.

                • CarlG
                  CarlG commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I am sending my "stuff" down to Randy next week. I have wondered about whether or not to add Flathead Ted's floaters to what Randy does or not. I have a new set of Ted's floaters that I've never installed, but don't know if I need to with a new "Randy" job.

                • dmdeaton
                  dmdeaton commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Are you talking Randy Gross? I have a full set of his brakes myself, waiting to get the time to install. I am on the bubble adding Flatheads stuff also.

              • #15
                I would say those plates are a stamped part and he would have to change the tooling it may be that he adds this to the instructions but you can tell when they fit the brake shoe without rubbing just make sure things are centered and you can see the problem i did not I installed them and they worked but had the sticking issue on the front. The diablo tape explained this very well. One other thing I had to do on the front with the bolt tightend up with the stamped plate my wedges were a little thick and did not move freely I just put them on a belt sander and thinned them up a little does not take much a light film of grease is good just make sure the wedges move up and down freely. With my new radial tires and good cast drums the car stops very well.

                That sticking issue made it hard to set the brakes up correctly.

                Comment


                • Mitch
                  Mitch commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I had a car come in with this sticking issue that had the Ted's floaters. It seemed to stick when going in reverse and applying the brake. Once the car went forward and the brake was applied again it freed up.

                • BNCHIEF
                  BNCHIEF commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Finally dawned on me who ted is in the pm DUH mine would do it with the wheel going forward, if you went backward it would break loose it could be the one you looked at maybe had a bent brake shoe a little out of round but after the issue was pointed out to me it all made sense if I remember I will bring a couple of those videos to branson to look at if you have time.

              • #16
                The hanging up problem I saw as a few isolated cases so maybe it needs looking at closer ,The black stamping was modelled using original Ford shoes ,I think when the shoes are repoped there is a tight spot there ,its between the back of the shoe and the roller .I can easily make changes its a question of how much material to remove .The free movement of the top of the shoe were the sliding wedge is important , pedal travel needs to be more than stock ,its still a good system. I had a ride in a freshly restored 35 Pick up on Sun with my kit fitted and the owner was very proud to jam the brakes on and demonstrate how well they worked he couldn't have been happier .Ted

                Comment


                • DaWizard
                  DaWizard commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Hey Ted, WELCOME to the VFF!!!

                • dmdeaton
                  dmdeaton commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Ted, thanks for the input. I sent you the email last week and ordered a kit.

              • #17
                Hey Ted welcome to the VFF!
                It's always good to get the technical advice from the expert himself.
                Thanks for chiming in on this thread and looking forward to your future input.
                3 ~ Tudor's
                Henry Ford said
                "It's all nuts and bolts"


                Mitch's Auto Service ctr

                Comment


                • #18
                  Great to hear from you i had to do a little fitting on my shoes not much but it solved the sticking and my brakes work fantastic used your set up all around new drums shoes everything tight. And thanks for being here.

                  Comment


                  • #19
                    Thanks for the welcome ,very nice ,I will try and drop in every so often ,Yes Danny that was sent .Having the pedal set loose when on the rebound will help to spring the wedges back,also new adjuster rods part # A4042 can be tight in there housings so a little fileling / grinding underneath will help,Ted

                    Comment


                    • #20
                      I have the front axle out and am also upgrading the brakes before i put it back in. I put the brake floater on one side and have a couple issues.

                      Issue #1 is when i put the drum on with the wheel bearings, the drum is hard to turn. Further investigating revealed the bottom of the brake shoes are dragging on the drum while the top of the shoes are not touching the drum. So i tapped the centering plate up as high as it would go and tightened the bolt. Still hard to turn. After about 20 attempts at getting the bottom shoe drag adjusted I am concluding that I need to file out the opening in the centering plate to allow the rollers and shoes to be raised just a bit. FYI i have new drums, 1 new hub, relined shoes that were arced to the drums, new wedges, new 7-1/4" long pushrods, new rollers, new pins, and new king pins ( it was all wore out!). I did grind the centering plate and now it does clear the brake shoes.

                      Issue #2 is during the multiple attempts to get the brakes adjusted i wroue down the brake lever angle. I am in the 27 to 39 degree range when it seems like 15 degrees is optimal. And adding a pill only increases the angle. How important is this measurement? It seems that to reduce the angle the wedge needs to be lowered which increases the problem mentioned in issue #1.

                      Any thoughts would be appreciated.

                      Comment


                      • dmdeaton
                        dmdeaton commented
                        Editing a comment
                        I think others will chime in and I haven't gotten mine out of the box yet. If you read the posts above, they say you need to grind a little off the corner of the shoe edge on one or both shoes. I have been reading the posts trying to figure out if I am going to use mine or not.

                      • BNCHIEF
                        BNCHIEF commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Dmeaton you do not grind anything off of the shoe itself and a little fitting of the part that touches both shoes is minimal they work fine don't overthink this.

                      • dmdeaton
                        dmdeaton commented
                        Editing a comment
                        That is what I meant, sorry, need to be exact when trying to put in words. I thought about that after I wrote it. Thanks for pointing that out. I have all my parts but haven't dry fit anything yet.

                    • #21
                      Thanks for the reply.. I did grind the corners and am sure that is not the issue.

                      Comment


                      • #22
                        Hey Stage1gs, WELCOME to the VFF!!!

                        While I do not run the floaters, I do know that you must have the angle away from the brake cross over rod when installed, the 15º is optimal, it can be eyeballed as long as you have angle. It can not be angled toward the cross shaft to begin adjusting. So it depends on which side we are discussing. The left side should tilt toward the front of the car as well as the right side. If the backing plate you are holding facing it, and the brake arm angles to your left, place it on the drivers side axle. If it tilts to your right, place it on the passenger, right side axle. I hope this makes it clear as mud.
                        You wana look waaay far up da road and plan yer route because the brakes are far more of a suggestion than a command!

                        Comment


                        • #23
                          "BAD BRAKES" usually means "BAD BRAKE MECHANIC"!!
                          Like: There's no such thing as a "BAD DOG" just a "BAD OWNER"
                          Buster T.

                          Comment


                          • #24
                            Welcome Stage1gs
                            You can also contact Flat Head Ted directly through his site or by PM here.
                            3 ~ Tudor's
                            Henry Ford said
                            "It's all nuts and bolts"


                            Mitch's Auto Service ctr

                            Comment


                            • #25
                              Yeah, me and mud get along well. Both levers are in correctly and both are forward of the backing plate brake lever, and are at 27 degrees on the left and 39 degrees on the right. I think i will email ted.. Thanks again!

                              Comment

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