Drum brakes are a pain to service. I just thought I'd mention that--especially the way Jeep designed them.
Another stroke of luck: getting the brake line fittings unscrewed from the brake cylinders was pretty simple. I think I'm using up all my good luck for the year this week. Shit.
Yes, I said "cylinderS".
With the left side already half-disassembled, I started there. Tore it down to the backing plate, pulled off the old cylinder and put on the new one. Reassembled it, making a couple mistakes in the process but ending up without any extra parts; then I moved everything over to the passenger side and started disassembly there.
After I got the brake shoes off, I noticed that the coating on the plates was puffed up and flaking off, right where they contact the cylinder. I looked at the cylinder, and saw bright shiny brake fluid oozing from behind the dust boot.
"Well," I said to myself, "it looks as if I didn't misremember after all."
So I put everything away, and got on my motorcycle, and hied myself over to Advance Auto to buy a cylinder for the right side. There wasn't nearly as much fluid here as on the driver's side, but sure as shitting if I had decided to let it go, I'd be replacing the right-side cylinder next month--and having to do all this shit again. And it's a $10 part, and it's easiest to replace it while you've got the thing apart anyway to replace the brake shoes because the other side's shoes were ruined and you always replace all shoes on an axle at the same time.
Came home, dove back in. The last time I did this--in January of 2008--I remember the rear brakes on this thing being an amazingly aggravating pain in the ass. It was less difficult this time even though I barely remember doing the job before. I got the right side buttoned up, realized that I'd installed the adjuster assembly wrong way on the driver's side, and moved back over there. When it came time to put the drums back on, then I saw that the parking brake actuator wasn't installed right on the left side so I had to take the springs off a third time to fix that. But once I was done, everything was in its proper place and to order.
I finished by bleeding the rear brakes. I had had the lines open a minimum amount of time but they'd still leaked; I used my vacuum pump to get the air out and was satisfied that I'd done the best I could. I adjusted the brake shoes so they were just barely dragging against the drums, put in the adjuster plugs, put on the bleeder covers, threw the wheels on, and took her off the jack stands.
...and forgot to torque the lug nuts before pulling out of the driveway. I got most of the way down the street before I realized what was wrong; fortunately I had my tools in the back, so I was able to quickly tighten them up and torque them down.
I took the brake shoes back and got my core charge, then hit KFC for dinner. I had originally intended to have yakisoba tonight, but I'm too f-ing tired to cook.
The brakes work better. Big surprise, considering one side is no longer coated with brake fluid--but I'm less than enamored of using the vacuum pump to bleed brakes; it doesn't work very well. I was expecting them to be a bit soft, but they're fine. There might be a little air in them, but there certainly ain't much. I think it'll do.
Which is a good thing, because I am done. My arms hurt, I'm all sweaty, my jeans are stained with grease and crud. I hope I can get them clean again. Shit.
But I sure am eating out a lot this week. Too much: Culver's on Wed, Thu; Super Burrito! on Thu; McDonald's and KFC on Fri. Oh well.
I still have the oil to change, but I'm hoping to do that over at Og's on Sunday. I had thought I might do it today, but by the time I was finished with the rear brakes, I was out of power. (See above, re: "done".) Also, greasing the suspension would not be pushing it.
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Last night, I totally faded out after 9 PM. Well, yesterday was pretty busy, and I'd been up since before 6 AM.
It's been an awful long time since I had KFC, too, come to think of it. Their cole slaw is still awesome.
I only thought of going to KFC because I have a Culver's menu on my desk and was looking at it this morning. I noticed that they have cole slaw; and while driving away from Advance Auto I was thinking that I'd like to try it--but that I did not want to eat Culver's again so soon.
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I saw an article to the effect that a downstate Illinois legislator introduced a bill to repeal the Firearm Owner ID Act. This would mean that it was again legal in IL to possess a firearm without having to have a special card that says you're allowed to exercise your civil rights under the 2nd Amendment.
Of course it won't become law. Quinn will veto it. But it'd be nice if I could have my guns back....