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Thread: Handbrake Adjustment VZ Commodore

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    Default Handbrake Adjustment VZ Commodore

    Any one point me in the right direction on how to adjust the handbrake, it has got to the point where it no longer engages and requires attention. Is it adjusted near the handbrake or down near the shoes?
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    Quote Originally Posted by impulsive View Post
    Any one point me in the right direction on how to adjust the handbrake, it has got to the point where it no longer engages and requires attention. Is it adjusted near the handbrake or down near the shoes?
    Hi Impulsive
    I'm sure your VZ would be similar to my VY. I removed a rear wheel and disc recently to adjust the handbrake at the rear drum, only to find that the brake shoes are one piece with no adjustment. That meant that I adjusted the handbrake at the handbrake handle. Push the driver's seat right back and pull the bottom of the rubber cover back from the handbrake mechanism down beside the console. You will see a screw and nut adjustment there.

    Jack one rear wheel clear of the ground and make sure you can safely release the handbrake without the car rolling, then let it off and ensure the handle is full down. Adjust the nut down the thread until it only takes about three or four clicks on the handle ratchet before the rear wheel can't be spun by hand.

    Don't over-adjust the nut - you only want the tiniest amount of "drag" on the wheel when the brake is fully released. You might not be able to feel the drag but should be able to just hear the shoes barely rubbing on the drum as the wheel rotates.

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    so turns out i did what you mentioned.. handbrake 4 clicks etc, feels tighter... still doesnt hold the car going backwards...
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    Ok, you will need to check the condition of the brake linings and drums and see if there is excessive dust build up, which can reduce the brake efficiency. Remove both rear wheels, calipers and caliper brackets, then ease each disc off the hub.

    Thoroughly de-dust handbrake shoes and mechanisms and clean out inside the drums. Are the shoes and the inside of the drums in good condition? If the car has been driven with the handbrake left on sometime during its life, the drums can be grooved and the shoes worn out as they are only pretty small. Also check to see that the brake actuating arm and shoes are free to move when the brake is pulled on.

    Once you have cleaned and checked everything, and replaced anything that was worn out, re-assemble and check for cable stretch or tightness in the conduit between the rear brakes and the front cable. I'm not sure but there might also be an adjuster at the connection between the front cable and the rear.

    The important thing to do is avoid over-adjusting the brakes and having them binding. Because they are so small, it is very easy to "over-drive" them without even knowing they are binding.

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    thanks for your help mate, i gave the brakes a thorough clean with some brake cleaner, checked conidition as far as i know they are ok, maybe i imight just take it to the local mech and get him to do it for me, any idea on how much i would exoect to pay for the procedure?
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    No, I've always done my own work so I don't have a clue about garage charges. I had the same poor hand brake performance until a couple of weeks ago, but the simple cable adjustment I outlined fixed it, though I had already de-dusted and checked the rear linings.

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    so u think the old dust-a-roonie will fix it? I might re-do it later on tomorrow...
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    Because the parking brake is a very small drum brake assembly, it tends to retain any dust from the linings. This dust covers everything inside the drum and if it isn't completely removed, it can inhibit brake performance. Remember that the hand brake isn't brilliant on these models because it really is just a parking brake, but it should hold you on a hill without needing the foot brake.

    You mentioned that you had used brake-clean, but I believe that the linings should remain dry, so when you remove the disc, use compressed air and/or a small brush to dust out the brakes and the drum. You will find that quite a bit of dust accumulates inside the drum and you might need to sand down the lip that develops inside the outer edge of the drum to facilitate its replacement.

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    Hey impulsive. First, don't adjust the cable, readjust it back to the point it was at before. Secondly, here's what you need to do:

    1. Remove rear wheels.
    2. You'll now see 2 rubber grommets on the outside of the rotor, remove 1 of these.
    3. Make sure your handbrake is down
    4. Rotate the rotors until the hole without the grommet is at the bottom, now look through this hole with a light and rotate the rotors left or right a bit until you see a cog.
    5. Put a flat blade screw driver in the hole and rotate the cog up or down intil the rotor locks up.
    6. Now rotate the cog the opposite way 2-4 CLICKS, the rotor should move freely again.
    7. Repeat steps 4-6 for the other rotor, moving the cog in the opposite way to the other wheel (ie if on the right wheel you pushed the cog up, then on the left you push it down to tighten the hub).

    Now that you've done this, test the hand brake, does it feel good? If it is, then put the wheels back on, drop the car and test the handbrake out.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Veriton View Post
    Hey impulsive. First, don't adjust the cable, readjust it back to the point it was at before. Secondly, here's what you need to do:

    1. Remove rear wheels.
    2. You'll now see 2 rubber grommets on the outside of the rotor, remove 1 of these.
    3. Make sure your handbrake is down
    4. Rotate the rotors until the hole without the grommet is at the bottom, now look through this hole with a light and rotate the rotors left or right a bit until you see a cog.
    5. Put a flat blade screw driver in the hole and rotate the cog up or down intil the rotor locks up.
    6. Now rotate the cog the opposite way 2-4 CLICKS, the rotor should move freely again.
    7. Repeat steps 4-6 for the other rotor, moving the cog in the opposite way to the other wheel (ie if on the right wheel you pushed the cog up, then on the left you push it down to tighten the hub).

    Now that you've done this, test the hand brake, does it feel good? If it is, then put the wheels back on, drop the car and test the handbrake out.
    i will do this tommorrow.. thanks a lot! i seen this cog and wondered what it was for, makes life a lot easier
    Life starts at 200km/h

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