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Discussion Starter #1
Whats the service life of the rear brake shoes? Just wondering as I'm pulling the rear wheel soon to service the shaft drive. The rear brakes will lock the wheel with enough force so their power seems ok. Just wondering the typical mileage you can get out of a set before replacing.
 

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I have 30K mils on my original rear shoes, checked them last fall and they were still good. I wonder what other owners will report.
 

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Most riders will NEVER wear out the rear brakes...
The service book doesn’t provide a minimum lining thickness.

Instead they have a ‘wear indicator’ just above the brake cam lever that the brake rod attaches to.

Go through a proper rear brake adjustment according to the manual at this link and observe the indicator. That will tell you the condition.

If you are like me and want a ‘minimum lining thickness’ that you can measure - industry standard would be approximately 1/16”

Also read and know WHEN to adjust your rear brake at the link below. That will save you lots of consternation in the future. It is also a big safety issue..


Page 16 here>>>>>. http://www.jaycepatterson.com/Jayce/PinkBook/periodica_16-38.pdf

Page 7 here>>>>>>. http://www.jaycepatterson.com/Jayce/PinkBook/chassis_parte_211-230.pdf

And this link for WHEN TO ADJUST.... https://www.volusiariders.com/58-motors-transmissions-drives/383602-when-check-adjust-rear-brake-vl800-volusia-c50-motorcycle.html
 

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Like Gene said, there is no published service interval for the rear brake shoes. Truth be told, most people never adjust their brake tension, so they really don't get much wear, if any. I have helped some riders in the past who NEVER used their rear brake to slow at all... If you keep it adjusted and you use your rear brake to modulate your speed (dirt bikers know the trick) then it is reasonable to assume you could need replacement shoes in as little as 20k miles. The lining is organic, so it is not very durable and it tends to fade if overheated (such as riding down the Blue Ridge Parkway 2 up). I think I swapped mine out for EBC sintered shoes around 30k miles.
 

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Traded the bike with original brakes with 43,000 kms on them
 

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How about the rear drum? Any info on the lifespan?
With the rear brake lining being the sacrificial material.... and the shielding of the drum assembly from road dirt- the drum will outlast the bike - unless the drum is damages by overheating.... there is a service limit on the drum diameter - that is unlikely to ever be reached under our riding and ownership conditions.

Now if the bike has over 100k miles that might be a service inspection consideration....

In comparison, Automotive drum brakes have a general life expectancy of 2 sets of brake shoes under the riding conditions that we experience. There is no reason to expect different for these bikes.

Seeing as we will be changing rear tires much more often than anything else on this bike - except for oil and filters.... it is easy to check the lining thickness and the drum edge for any lip development due to wear.

Brake wear has never been an issue -whereas brake fade can be a concern under aggressive riding conditions - and metallic pads and shoes will help with that.

The down side of metallic linings is accelerated rotor and drum wear - but you still will find they will outlive your ownership for the next owner to worry about ..

IF you are now the ‘NEXT OWNER’, THEN you will want to do an inspection so you can defer the worry about it to —- the next owner....
 

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With the rear brake lining being the sacrificial material.... and the shielding of the drum assembly from road dirt- the drum will outlast the bike - unless the drum is damages by overheating.... there is a service limit on the drum diameter - that is unlikely to ever be reached under our riding and ownership conditions.

Now if the bike has over 100k miles that might be a service inspection consideration....

In comparison, Automotive drum brakes have a general life expectancy of 2 sets of brake shoes under the riding conditions that we experience. There is no reason to expect different for these bikes.

Seeing as we will be changing rear tires much more often than anything else on this bike - except for oil and filters.... it is easy to check the lining thickness and the drum edge for any lip development due to wear.

Brake wear has never been an issue -whereas brake fade can be a concern under aggressive riding conditions - and metallic pads and shoes will help with that.

The down side of metallic linings is accelerated rotor and drum wear - but you still will find they will outlive your ownership for the next owner to worry about ..

IF you are now the ‘NEXT OWNER’, THEN you will want to do an inspection so you can defer the worry about it to —- the next owner....
Thank you for a thorough response! How does one detect overheating of the drum?
 

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It will turn colors. Usually a lovely shade of gold, flecked with some purple where it got really hot. It will also be severely out of round if overheated as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
So ive pulled the back tyre.
Unfortunately my jack didnt lift the rear up high enough to roll the tyre out, so I had to take the final drive off and get it out of the side instead. Not a big issue as the drive had to come out anyway for servicing.

The drive shaft splines were mainly dry, dirty and some orange 'rust water' present, with old dirty grease at the drive end, and bone dry at the trans end.
Removed the dust seal, removed the snapring, degreased everything, applied a lot of molypaste, new dust seal, reassembled. Glad I did it.

Drum brakes, absolutely filthy. Covered in dust, dirt and some light surface corrosion. Cleaned thoroughly with brake cleaner, toothbrush and rags. Used some wet and dry to rough up the brake pads a little. They looked to be about 4-5mm thick.
All done and ready for the new tyre. Glad I did this, it was in dire need of some servicing
 

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In the past couple of years I have begun to use my rear brake for slow speed maneuvers & stops. If you haven't been using the rear brake, I guess I wouldn't be concerned. If not used, it cannot be worn out!
 

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I have 85K on my C50T and have never had to change the front or rear pads. I have only had to hit the brakes hard twice in 5 years. The rest of the time I use the front brake and the engine to slow down and stop. I just got the bike back from the shop for some warranty service and checked the front pads. Still the same. Not even half worn.

I have three sets of new brake pads, purchased when on sale. 1-ceramic, 1-sintered, and 1-organic. Not sure which I'll put on when it's time to change.

I have a new set of rear shoes too. But never needed them, through 5 rear tire changes. I did notice the casting on the current brake shoes looked to be about to rub the hub, so I took them to the belt sander and cleaned it up. Had almost as much pad material as the new ones, so I've never change them. Always adjusted the brake when changing the tire.


 
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