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Discussion Starter #1
I installed new wheel front wheel bearings and brake shoes (EBC) on the '89 TW today. All going well, everything spinning nice and smooth and then I tried to re-install the brake cable .... it went to crap at that point. I've tried every which way to tighten the cable and it just seems like it is too long now, I can't get any brake action/friction at the shoes at all. I know all is installed correctly, I can get the brakes to lock by manually pulling up the lever at the wheel housing. The brake cable worked before disassembly.

I have no clue if the bike has the OEM cable or some hodgepodge cable. Is it time to throw the towel and buy a new OEM cable or has anyone else been down this road and can offer a fix/suggestion?

Thank you much
Doug B
 

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Discussion Starter #5
********Are you sure your brake cam and lever aren't exactly 180 degrees off? **********

Ken,.......Could very well be, now that you mention it,

I'll explain.......when looking at the brake cam lever on the wheel housing, the "ball" on the end of the cable is at about an 8' o clock position. I can spin the wheel and fully lockup the wheel by manually pulling up on the cam lever with my hand. Inside the housing, the cam itself is in a vertical position under no brake and will rotate counterclockwise when looking from inside the wheel to outside. I think that is correct.
At the brake lever on the handlebar, the adjuster is screwed completely out. To test/adjust ............ should I zip tie the brake lever all the way back (as in full brake) and zip tie the brake cam lever in a full brake position and screw the adjustor back in the brake lever until taught (assuming it will)?

Since the cable worked before, I feel I am missing a simple step somewhere along the adjustment trail. It just has me stumped.

Thanks
Doug b
 

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If it is 180 degrees off you would have to undo your shoes, flip the lever completely over facing the other direction. The brakes will seem to work either way. The brake drum should be locked into the fork notch. The brake lever should be toward the front of the bike. There should be no brake applied at this point. Mount the brake with no tension on it. Connect the cable then adjust it. There is the adjustment at the bottom near the drum and another at the top near the lever. I don't remember the exact adjustment process since I only replaced the brakes once and they hardly ever need much of an adjustment.
 

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The gear can be moved however many splines needed until the brake action feels good to you. Before you move the splines, move the adjuster at the brake lever to allow you maximum adjustment capability in the future. It is a PIA but worth the effort.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
After casting a fresh sets of eyes on this from a night's sleep, I am convinced the brake lever on the handlebar is not correct, it is scavenged from some other bike. It is not allowing enough travel before it collides with the handlebar housing. I enjoy this bike, but man-o-man the previous owner hodge podged some stuff up. Gives it character, I guess? I'll play with it some more after the grandkiddo's B-Day party. Wahoo!

Thank you all for your help/suggestions. This is a GREAT forum and a WEALTH of resource. Doug B
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Yep, mine is just like your pic above. On the inside of the hub, all is in order.... the cam rotates and the new shoes move outward. My grief has to be along the trail from the point of the "yoke" on the cam lever back to the yoke on the handlebar lever. I'm going to start back at square one with a new OEM cable and handlebar lever to insure I am dealing with OEM parts and not something off a tractor or ???

Thanks Doug B
 

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For the longest time I thought the drum brake on my 99 is useless as I could squeeze the lever right to the bar. Then one day I decided to really figure out what was going on and realized my lever was bent lol. It should be about 3" from the bar.
 

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One of my TW's has the lower brake adjustment nearly maxed out
P2040065.JPG

and the other one it is maxed out.
P2040064.JPG

I figured it was because the cables were old and stretched and probably should be replaced. They are both '87's.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
FedEx says they are dropping off a new cable and handlebar brake lever today. I'll try to verify the fit tonight. I would not doubt the fact my cable on the bike is stretched to a degree, but after wrestling it for an afternoon it finally dawned on me the current lever is a misfit from some other bike altogether. I think that is the bigger issue. Anyhow, after this is sorted out, then its on to replacing rear wheel bearings, rear brakes, chain and sprockets. I'm thinking I best save some of these projects for winter when the snow is flying......but in a quirky way I enjoy wrenching this bike.
 

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FedEx says they are dropping off a new cable and handlebar brake lever today. I'll try to verify the fit tonight. I would not doubt the fact my cable on the bike is stretched to a degree, but after wrestling it for an afternoon it finally dawned on me the current lever is a misfit from some other bike altogether. I think that is the bigger issue. Anyhow, after this is sorted out, then its on to replacing rear wheel bearings, rear brakes, chain and sprockets. I'm thinking I best save some of these projects for winter when the snow is flying......but in a quirky way I enjoy wrenching this bike.
I would be interested in seeing pictures of the parts side by side.
 

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Did the brake work prior to disassembly? If so there is your answer. Shoes installed incorrectly or the cam/lever is assembled incorrect. Always good to take before Picts afore disassembly if your unsure. Highly advise reading the shop manual, available at this site. Always pays to read directions before undertaking a task new to yourself. It’s the step that separates idiots from technicians. And one that will ensure proper safe work, not hacks
tonto
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Yes, they did work before disassembly. Not great, but they did work. That's what so frustrating, I did take my time, watched all the videos, read my manual, and paid close attention to everything being installed correctly, in working order, etc. I'll have time to troubleshoot some more on Saturday. The new shoes are EBC and EBC says their installed OD is 130 mm or 5.12". I have the spec for the wheel hub dia, (not off the top of my head, from the shop manual), I suppose I could open the hub again and inspect/confirm those dimensions.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I now have brakes. My front drum measured 5.125" to 5.130", the manual specs a 5.16" dia as max. I installed new OEM shoes and now have friction with good braking action. I did not measure, but my eyeball noticed the OEM pads as having a little thicker brake lining material and it seemed the springs on the OEM pads are not as quite robust as the EBC set.......maybe allowing the pads to move further with an equal lever "press"? Regardless, I have brakes now and am a happy camper. Thank you all for your help and suggestions.
 
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