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I am thinking about replacing the rear brakes on my 2004 Mercury Sable. They do not look very complicated. The problem I am having is the drums will not come off. I know that there is an access hole for the rear adjusters. I have the tool for the rear adjuster (spoon tool) but cannot seem to find the adjuster through the access hole. Is it better to use the access hole or hammer the drum? I understand that drums form a lip which is why the drum won't come off easily. Any advice is greatly appreciated.
 

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QUOTE (Sable 04 @ Jun 8 2010, 05:02 PM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=810465
I am thinking about replacing the rear brakes on my 2004 Mercury Sable. They do not look very complicated. The problem I am having is the drums will not come off. I know that there is an access hole for the rear adjusters. I have the tool for the rear adjuster (spoon tool) but cannot seem to find the adjuster through the access hole. Is it better to use the access hole or hammer the drum? I understand that drums form a lip which is why the drum won't come off easily. Any advice is greatly appreciated.[/b]
Look and see if there are two threaded holes in the drum. These holes are so you can screw in two long threaded bolts that forse the drum off as the bolts go in. They are placed so the bolts make contact with the back plate. Not all drums have these holes. Make sure yhe emergency drake is off.
 

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The adjuster is in there. Idon't know why you can't find it. Just pop off the rubber cover ( which may not be there if someone else has already been in ) and stick the adjuster in. The end the bends at around 90 degrees is the end you'll use. You'll be trying to turn the wheel down, iirc, to bring the shoes in. the drum should be able to move on the hub, if not, whack it real good with a bfh, don't hit the studs. You may still have to whack it outward and pry it off too even if the shoes are adjusted all the way.
 

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You gotta release the adjusting lever before spinning the adjuster...which can be done with a screwdriver or something similar. I took a pic last time I had my drums off that may help you..its in this thread... http://www.taurusclub.com/forum/index.php?...c=71611&hl= it shows me putting a screwdriver thru the inspection hole in backing plate and where it travels in conjunction to the adjusting wheel and lever.
 

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Rusty ridge on drums - can make difficult to remove.

Thanks,

good advice and pictures here on the drums, getting them off if they are "stuck", and trying to back off the adjusters if necessary.

Working as an assistant with an old mechanic way back in the mid / late 1980's, the old cars (ex GM's) were a lot easier. A plastic plug comes off the axle backing plate revealing a wide slot where you gain easy access, and view of the lever and the adjuster. A brake tool usually made easy work of backing off the adjuster. (and sometimes, the adjuster itself - the threaded part is seized up and rusted - so it did not adjust, and you could NOT back it off - then out came the mallet to try and give the drum a good shot to get it off)

And on the old cars - if I remember correctly, when you drive the car in reverse, and hit the brakes, that is what moved the adjuster lever to spin the adjuster, and adjust the rear breaks each time (in theory) you braked while moving backwards.

(and the Taurus does this adjustment when the Emergency Brake cable is used? That is not as great a method. Some people never use the E-brake. And when they never use it - it can rust and seize.)

What I found with my Taurus - the drums form a rusty ridge on the outside edge of the machined friction surface of the drum, which the brake shoes grab when you try to remove the drum.

So backing off the adjusters, and retracting the shoes in that case would really help.

So when you get off the drums, scrape off that ridge good.

Or go get them machined - a light cut if possible. Will help all around.
(although some places don't wanna machine anything anymore - they say "we only replace with new drums ... sorry bud")

Thanks.
 
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