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factory manual 4 wheel drums on a Challenger

1973dust

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I haven't driven a car with manual drums for over 20 years and I'm wondering if they really suck as bad as what I remember. Are they livable for cruising around if fully rebuilt if the car is never driven in more than light traffic? My brother and I both drove the car thru high school in the early 90's without ever hitting anyone but I know that brakes on modern cars have only gotten better. My son and I are trying to decide if going thru the stock drums is worth the effort or if we should just bite the bullet and convert to discs before driving the car. Either way, we intend to replace all hard and soft lines as the car is not currently drivable. Thanks for any opinions.
 

DetMatt1

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I don’t think I ever drove a car with manual drum brakes but my big block ‘71 has power drum and they stop the car just fine. You have to stay constantly aware that every car around you can stop in much shorter distances.
 

moparleo

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I remember drum brakes well. If you stay with them ( I wouldn't unless this is a #'s matching car of some worth) Here are things to do / not do.
*Do*, make sure brake fluid is clean and changed regularly as it absorbs water. This can boil causing air pockets in the brake lines. The pedal can drop to the floor.
*Don't* ride the brake pedal or do a lot of stop /go or down the mountain driving. Or make long high speed stops as these are what generate a lot of heat in the brake system. When front drum brakes get too hot they can cause pulling from side to side, brake fade.
*Don't* get the brakes wet and try to stop quickly as they must get hot enough to burn off the water to regain friction. If they do get wet you can gently pump the brakes to heat them back up to dry the lining.

As DetMatt1 says, drive accordingly and allow more stopping distance. Personally I want my car to always stop quickly and predictably.
Disc brakes save lives.
 

BSG

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Just did them on my 71 #s matching BB chally they stop but I wouldn’t go road racing with them it’s just a different feeling and not a good one 😂
 

Chryco Psycho

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I would absolutely do front disc , you don't say what you have for engine but with a powerful big block with drums is insane , match your braking power to engine power !
My Chall was factory manual drums , I now have the Cordoba 11.75 " front disc .
 

cuda joe

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go with front disk power or manual you dont want to rear end someone
 
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