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Charles Q Treichel 09-04-2002 11:30 AM

Brakes replacement tip
I am fixing up an old 77 that I recently bought. I went to new brake pads and was please to fing out that I could buy the entire brake including backing plate, actuators and new friction pads for only $45 per wheel! At that price, why fool around with just the worn out parts.
The backing plates were most difficult to remove. About 25% of the bolts had to be cut. I did this with a Dremel tool with 1" dia diamond inpregnated blade. This beat 100 plus blows with a cold chisel! Another tip: Pay special attention to R and L, they are not well marked.
For more info contact me.

joel 09-11-2002 11:34 AM

Where did you get your parts from . I am thinking about doing the same thing . Did you replace your magnets to?:)

Charles Q Treichel 09-11-2002 07:28 PM

The company is Pioneer rim and Wheel, phone 608 222 4545. I can't believe how good their prices are. The price included new magnets. They also had good prices on new bearings and seals. If you replace the brakes be sure you get a new set of staked bolts.

john hd 09-12-2002 12:02 AM


i've always had good luck with pioneer. i see your from madison too.

welcome to the board


Dave-O 09-13-2002 11:24 AM

I am very interested in changing the brakes on my new 72 Ambassador. Replacing the whole assembly seems to be the way to go, but I am not in Wisconsin, or anywhere near there. How do I go about finding a local supplier? Is there a part number or other identifying characteristic to help me describe to local shops what I am looking for? Or is the backing plate assembly a generic item that can be had from any number of vendors? $45 a wheel seems to be a very fair price....
Thanks for any help.

Action 09-13-2002 11:49 AM

Local Parts
Look in the yellow pages for trailer equipment & parts. Or go on line and search for same. I bought some brake parts from a Dexter dealer. There are Dexter dealers all over.


Dave-O 09-13-2002 03:23 PM

Ok, I found a place about 45 minutes away that stocks that stuff, but the first question he asks, I can't answer. "What kind of magnets are on them?" After a brief pause, in which he concluded I was clueless, he added "Specifically what shape are they?" I admitted that I didn't know and he said "(pained grimace sound) I'm afraid we are gonna have to know that".
I didn't even think to ask what the second question would have been.
You made it sound so easy Action ;)
I thought just mentioning old Airstream, Kelsey Hayes, backing plates would allow me to bluff my way through the deal. I wasn't sure, but if he asked I was gonna say 12". But I was thwarted before I could find my groove.

davidz71 09-13-2002 05:05 PM

Don't you just hate that! There have been a number of times I have gone to autoparts stores to buy a simple electrical bulb or what have you and when they ask me "for what?" I answer, "For an Airstream" with a rather sheepish grin. I had one guy ask me what year then asked what kind of vehicle it was. I have learned to fend for myself by asking the knowledgeable folks on this forum, Andy at Inland RV, and to read with interest my service manual. I'm starting to get the big picture but will never have all the knowledge to tear my 31' down and put it back together again.

Action 09-13-2002 05:33 PM


I didn't mean to imply it was simple. Easy maybe, however it has been my experience with a unit built in 1966 that getting parts has been anything but simple.

Suggestion..... Take off the old backing plate and brake drum. Bring it with you when you go to get the parts. Cause here is reality.... if you give him the data over the phone there still is a chance that errors occur. (I believe Murphy's law actualy has some corollary that expands with the age of the unit)

Magnets ... don't be surprised if they look different that what you have. I had round ones and oval ones are what is replaced now.

Yes there can be improvements in 30 years too.

Rule 1 - Always ask questions. (After all you are the customer and are footing the bill - they are working for you)
Rule 2 - If you don't understand the answers, see rule 1


john hd 09-13-2002 06:58 PM

hey guys,


Dave-O 09-13-2002 07:37 PM

Thanks Action,
I may have to use the suggestion of physically taking the BP up there to get a match. My hope was to go ahead and get the parts together for when the right combination of friends and tools come together in close proximity to my space capsule. That usually happens after 5 or on the weekends. And when I get it up and the wheels off I am gonna try and get some Por-15 on the frame and axles.
Other words I'll need to be making hay while the sun is shining and the more correct parts I have....well, you know.

Thanks John for the website. You think that guy will ask me what shape my magnets are? :D
Seriously, I bet shipping would kill me, what do you think they weigh?

Action 09-13-2002 07:38 PM

Thanks John,

However that location is not local to Dave O. And you could add your link to the links thread in this forum that can help.


Action 09-13-2002 08:32 PM

Wanted Dead or Alive

Shipping won't kill you. It's the bill collector that does that job. He was over here on the West Coast so I'll keep him pinned down for awhile.

So ya gotta tell us when you rip off that brake drum ...... What shape are your magnets?

And the next logical question, what shape will you be in after the job?


joel 09-13-2002 11:55 PM

Charles thanks for the info you made 2 people happy . I have a neighbor who deals in used airstreams and he can't get the parts that cheap. Thanks

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