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Thread: Replacing rear brakes on 1983 GMC 1-ton dually

  1. #1
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    Replacing rear brakes on 1983 GMC 1-ton dually

    How difficult is it to replace the rear brakes on a 1983 GMC one-ton dually? Do I need to pull the axles? Can anyone point me to a diagram? Thanks.
    Last edited by TomPiantanida; 07-06-2009 at 09:17 AM. Reason: Incorrect year

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    yea just did mine yesterday, dang i shoulda made photos of step by step!

    Yes you have to remove axles, then remove a a retainer ring that holds a key (that keeps the nut from loosening) the nut shouldn`t be really tight (in fact it should loosen easily) once the nut is removed you can pull the drum/hub assy off (it will be quite heavy on your application!) if it doesn`t come off easily you may have to back off the adjuster. with the drum off you can remove the small clip that holds the park brake arm on the shoe, push it out of the shoe. Then remove the shoe springs from the top anchor (best done with a proper tool) then you can remove the spring retainers that hold the shoes to the backing plate, the shoes with most of the hardware should come off at this point (they will be held together with the spring at the bottom) then on a bench you can swap over the harware to the new shoes. clean of the backing plates and lube the points were the shoes contact, plus anti-sieze the adjuster. then its pretty much re-install as it was taken appart, make sure the the pins in the brake cylinder end up on the shoes once installed and everything. it may help to take a photo of the shoes piror to removal as somethings can easily be installed incorrectly. also when installing the drum/hub assy be careful not to wreck the seal, for setting up the nut tighten it all the way (if you don`t have the proper socket you could use a pin...or anything that works.) when the nut is tight spin the hub/drum, see if it spins freely, then try to tighten nut again. at this point you will loosen the nut back untill the next opening is available to put the key in, install the retainer, at this point it is easiest to set up the shoes (because the axle isnt in the drum rotates freely) then use some silicon on the axle and put her in, should be torqued to 110ft/lbs

    Are you replacing the drums? probly not cause the are $$$$! getting them turned would be much more affordable. but if so you will need to press out the studs seperate the drum from rotor clean and reassemble (re-press in studs)

    I highly recommend replacing the axle seals while you are in they are ususally cheap and then you can inspect/clean/lube the bearings before re-assembly.

    Any other questions let us know!
    Last edited by stumpuller454; 07-07-2009 at 07:07 AM. Reason: grammar correction...thanks crab! lol
    Gone.

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    Thank you, Stumpuller454. The job went just like you said it would. Heavy, but not difficult.

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    Good to here man!
    Gone.

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    Nice job ! To both you guys !

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    Hey Guys , new here, thanks for the help. I put in and offer on a used 83 1 ton dually, like you guys just discussed, the rear brake cylinder gave out, as the guy accepted a bid. My question , understanding the above work listed. and being mechanically minded. What kind of time are we talking about to do the above mentioned work. I am guessing that , taking all that apart, and replacing the brakes and cylinder, and reassembly, is probably about 4 to 5 hours, assuming nothing is frozen on the rear. This truck has been sitting for a couple of years, and I am trying to get it out of the yard, and back to my house, so I can take my time and go through the thing and check the rest of it out a bit more thoroughly. And one more question? , it has to have the two batteries in order to start correct, (due to increased starting amps?)
    thanks for any help. I want to barter with him on the price, since I can't drive it home w/o doing the brakes, and he has to get it out of there.
    Last edited by Maui GTS; 05-03-2010 at 08:11 PM.

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    Senior Member Oldmech's Avatar
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    dang.. im gonna have to whine right along with stump puller about not taking pics.. i just did an 85 a few weeks ago, and a 97 not long after that. i dont think it took me more than three hours to do either of them, including replacing both the rear brake lines/wheel cyl. on the 85 and bleeding them. I've done it before, and have all the tools, so some time can be added for breaks and drinking a beer to relax and calm down

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    Senior Member chengny's Avatar
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    Last edited by bradrhale; 05-06-2010 at 10:11 AM. Reason: removed link to related forum
    1986 Sierra Classic
    Lost it in a fire

    Replaced with 1986 Sierra K3500 single axle

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    That's a pretty nice write up, was there one for heavier brakes with axles being pulled ?

  10. #10
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    you don't have the pull the axles. you'll spend a while beating the drums off, but its actually a pretty easy brake job once they are off.
    Joe
    89 K2500 Chevy, Wee-Oh-five 294K miles
    1962 Scout 80 parts I guess
    1966 Scout 800 resto job
    2005 Chevy 2500HD Short cab long box DURAMAX
    1996 P30, 6.5 NA Mac Mobile
    whole lot of buicks

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