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Brake Trouble - Rancher

  #1  
Old 12-13-2018, 10:13 PM
Trailblazer
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 52
Default Brake Trouble - Rancher

I recently purchased a 2006 Rancher 350 that was definitely neglected by its previous owners. I am slowly going through and fixing it's biggest problems. I am now on the brakes . Neither the front nor rear brakes work and there is no pressure when you squeeze either lever. I checked the master cylinder and it was empty. I filled it up and attempted to bleed the front brakes. Unfortunately there was no pressure generated by squeezing the brake handle. When I unscrewed the bleeder nipple on the front left no brake fluid came out while trying to bleed it. I then tried the right front and managed to break off the front right bleeder nipple/nut. I am hoping I can replace this rather than buying a new assembly.

The rear is the same, when you squeeze it there is no resistance and the foot brake on the right will not move, like it's siezed in the nuetral position. Not sure if it is from sitting so I hit it with some PB Blaster.

​​​​​​​I would appreciate any advice on where I should start to get these brakes going as cost effective as possible.
 
  #2  
Old 12-14-2018, 04:32 AM
Extreme Pro Rider
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Lancaster England
Posts: 3,522
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The faulty rear brake is fairly standard on Hondas. First sort out the footbrake, does the footbrake lever pivot smoothly on its pivot? If not, remove and de-rust. If that is OK, next the brake cam, this is almost always stuck, or stiff. Remove RH rear wheel. Remove hub, remove the tin shroud over brake drum. The screws can be difficult to get out, tapping the backplate round the threads can help. The tin shroud gets stuck too, so be careful not to break the backplate. When refitting smear grease round the O ring and into the screw holes, makes future removal so much easier. Disconnect the cables. Knock the pivot lever back and forwards and find the mid point, you should then be able to remove the drum. Remove the shoes. Remove the pivot lever and the tin pointer, this only fits on one spline. Knock the pivot shaft through the backplate with a drift, only hitting in the middle or you will burr the splines. Remove rust and corrosion, grease and re-fit. Re-fit shoes and drum, after "roughing" both with coarse emery, soak the felt washer in oil and refit that. Fit the pointer, check brake cables move freely. Refit the lever, with a minimum of 10 threads sticking through for the handbrake adjuster when the brakes are on, if there is way too much, or not enough thread, move the lever onto the next spline, adjust the footbrake and check it works. If the lever is moving freely with the footbrake, try the handbrake, if it is still binding, fit a new cable. Oil the lever/cable mechanism. A slow job, I spent the whole of Wednesday afternoon doing just the above to a 350. Footbrake lever took red heat to get it to come off.

Front brakes. Adjusters are almost always stuck, I remove hubs and drums together, makes life easier. If the adjusters are stuck, remove shoes, and adjusters one at a time, and free them off, greasing the threads. When bleeding, I pinch the pipe just below the master cylinder with vice grips, lever down, pinch, lever up, remove grips, lever down again, pinch, and repeat. Only use the normal bleeding techniques for final bleeding of slave cyls.
 
  #3  
Old 12-15-2018, 01:11 AM
Trailblazer
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 52
Default

Thank you for the thorough instructions! I started trying to remove the front right drum tonight with no luck. The rubber piece was missing on the outside of the drum that I believe keeps out dirt. It looked like the adjusters we're badly rusted. I had no luck trying to pry the drum off after I removed the castle nut. Any ideas on how to pull off a stubborn drum? I know your instructions said to remove the hub and drum together but I wasn't sure how to do that. Thanks.
 
  #4  
Old 12-15-2018, 03:53 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Lancaster England
Posts: 3,522
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Hub and drum usually come off with no problems, but on the odd occasion they don't, remove the two drum screws and tap round the outside of the drum with a soft hammer. Once the drum is off, you can put a puller behind the hub flange. Or you could leave the drum in place and put two opposite wheel nuts on backwards, then the two legged puller behind them.
 
  #5  
Old 12-17-2018, 05:27 PM
Trailblazer
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 52
Default

I was able to get both front drums off. Unfortunately they were both in bad condition and extremely rusty. The right side didn't even have the brake shoes in there anymore. I ordered two brake assemblies that were used in good condition from Ebay which included the assembly which had what looked like usable brake shoes and wheel cylinders. I ordered new brake shoes and a master cylinder rebuild kit. Hopefully when that all arrives in the mail it will solve my front brake problems.

I started trying to tackle the rear brakes and the drum cover (tin shroud) is stuck to the drum even with all of the bolts removed. I have hit it with heat and tried to pry it off but I can only pry a very small area at a time and it bends the cover before it wants to break it free from the drum. I just purchased a used drum cover today online for $15 dollars in anticipation that I will be destroying this one while I try and take it off. Is there any secrets to getting it off? Its almost like its fused on there.
 
  #6  
Old 12-18-2018, 04:00 AM
Extreme Pro Rider
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Lancaster England
Posts: 3,522
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Like I wrote earlier, the secret is using grease on assembly. Unfortunately Honda don't, so it is usual for the flange to bend as you pry it off. Just be careful you don't break the backplate as you do so. The flange of the tin shroud can be tapped gently back down when you re-fit it. The longer parts are left alone the worse they stick together, if owners would get brakes fixed when they start giving trouble, taking them apart would not be difficult, but they don't.
 
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