Allstate grabby front brakes
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Hooked
1960 Allstate VNA, 1962 VNB
Joined: 19 May 2014
Posts: 139
Location: Cambria, CA
Mon Oct 28, 2019 10:24 am quote
Hello all. Looking for some ideas on what to do to improve the brakes on the 1960 Allstate.

They are kind of weak when the lever is pulled. They do start to slow the scooter down but they just don't have a solid feel.

Then at a point near the end of the brake lever travel the front brake grabs real hard and/or locks up.

Is there anything that might cause this other than that they are old and that"s just how they work.

I'll try to get a picture posted this evening.
Hooked
1972 Vespa GTR, 1963 Lambretta LI 125
Joined: 05 Nov 2018
Posts: 126
Location: Halifax, England
Mon Oct 28, 2019 10:55 am quote
Make sure your cable is long enough. If it isn't as the suspension compresses it will itself pull on the cable and cause a severe brake. This happened to me.you need a good loop of cable outer at the end of the fork.
Hooked
P200E
Joined: 11 Apr 2010
Posts: 462
Location: The Town that dreaded Sundown.
Mon Oct 28, 2019 11:43 am quote
No first hand knowledge of this so hope someone will chim in who has.

https://www.vespatime.com/en/vespa-front-shock-absorbers-and-parts/560-crimaz-kit-anti-dive-shock-absorber-fork-smallframe-by-crimaz.html#


Edit: terrible spelling fixd

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Anti Dive bracket



Last edited by Ape on Mon Oct 28, 2019 4:35 pm; edited 1 time in total
Hooked
1952 Allstate 1955 Allstate 1958 lambretta 1965 Allstate 1968 sprint
Joined: 20 Jul 2017
Posts: 476
Location: Central california
Mon Oct 28, 2019 4:32 pm quote
Grabby brakes
Few things can cause a grabby brake....first one that comes to mind is a brake drum that is not perfectly round. Over time they become ďunroundĒ
Second thing that comes to mind is oil residue on the brake shoes. Any oil on the shoes will cause them to be grabby as they heat up.
Just so you know, the brakes are not very good on a good day. I have a 65 Allstate that did the same as your describing. I replaced the drum and shoes....made a big difference. Good thing the scooter is slow..LOL
Ossessionato
Joined: 22 Oct 2011
Posts: 4386
Location: Tega Cay, SC
Mon Oct 28, 2019 4:45 pm quote
if they are the original shoes, get rid of them. Get some Newfren shoes, clean up the drum and install. World of difference!
Hooked
1960 Allstate VNA, 1962 VNB
Joined: 19 May 2014
Posts: 139
Location: Cambria, CA
Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:57 pm quote
Sjanuary wrote:
Few things can cause a grabby brake....first one that comes to mind is a brake drum that is not perfectly round. Over time they become ďunroundĒ
Second thing that comes to mind is oil residue on the brake shoes. Any oil on the shoes will cause them to be grabby as they heat up.
Just so you know, the brakes are not very good on a good day. I have a 65 Allstate that did the same as your describing. I replaced the drum and shoes....made a big difference. Good thing the scooter is slow..LOL
Thanks for the info. New shoes are definitely in order. Iím interested in those Pinasco drums too.

Oh yeah it is slow but very fun to ride.
Hooked
1960 Allstate VNA, 1962 VNB
Joined: 19 May 2014
Posts: 139
Location: Cambria, CA
Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:00 pm quote
Tierney wrote:
if they are the original shoes, get rid of them. Get some Newfren shoes, clean up the drum and install. World of difference!
Thank you for your help.
I donít know if they are original but they certainly look crapy. Definitely getting new ones.
Hooked
1960 Allstate VNA, 1962 VNB
Joined: 19 May 2014
Posts: 139
Location: Cambria, CA
Sun Nov 03, 2019 5:50 pm quote
I spent some time working on the brakes today.
I replaced the brake pads, drum and cable and housing.

Brakes feel stronger but it feels like there is still something wrong.

I can feel the brakes pulsing.
The braking is smooth and then grabs in one spot in its rotation.

It is almost like the drum isnít round
(brand new drum) or is it possible the axel is bent. Would a bent axel cause this?
Addicted
GL, PK, PE200 with hack, Sears Rust Badge
Joined: 24 Apr 2012
Posts: 841
Location: Deep in the heart of Texas
Sun Nov 03, 2019 6:05 pm quote
Did you take out the pivot pin to clean and grease everything that turns or have a part on it that turns?
Hooked
1952 Allstate 1955 Allstate 1958 lambretta 1965 Allstate 1968 sprint
Joined: 20 Jul 2017
Posts: 476
Location: Central california
Sun Nov 03, 2019 7:59 pm quote
Front brakes....
Yep my guess is the brand new drum is not round. Happens all the time. Friend of mine bought a Pinasco drum...it was round. Pretty nice piece. I bought a new drum for my 65 Allstate and it was not round. I put it in a lathe to verify that it was not round. I did give it a message on the lathe...it is better but not great...still a bit grabby. Good thing it is slow.
Hooked
1960 Allstate VNA, 1962 VNB
Joined: 19 May 2014
Posts: 139
Location: Cambria, CA
Mon Nov 04, 2019 7:48 pm quote
Sjanuary wrote:
Yep my guess is the brand new drum is not round. Happens all the time. Friend of mine bought a Pinasco drum...it was round. Pretty nice piece. I bought a new drum for my 65 Allstate and it was not round. I put it in a lathe to verify that it was not round. I did give it a message on the lathe...it is better but not great...still a bit grabby. Good thing it is slow.
I hate it when the new stuff I purchased doesnít work right.

Although it does give me an excuse to purchase the Pinasco drum. Itís what I wanted anyway.
Hooked
1960 Allstate VNA, 1962 VNB
Joined: 19 May 2014
Posts: 139
Location: Cambria, CA
Thu Dec 26, 2019 5:26 pm quote
I have a little time off work and the rain stopped. Out to the shed to install the brand new Pinasco front brake drum and Pinasco pads.

The installation was easy. Unfortunately the new parts didnít solve the grabby front brake.

What to do. Well I just screwed the barrel adjuster in as far as it would go and went for a ride. Almost no front brake to speak of but what the hell.
It sure was a nice day.

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Ossessionato
Joined: 22 Oct 2011
Posts: 4386
Location: Tega Cay, SC
Thu Dec 26, 2019 6:55 pm quote
I'm sure it does not help when the front end has only a spring and no shock to soften the blow. I also think it would be worth looking at the brake cam and relieving the front and rear edge of the brake shoe material. That's all I got.
Ossessionato
'09 250 GTSie '75 Rally 200 '79 P200 '09 Stella 221
Joined: 13 May 2012
Posts: 2554
Location: Midway, Kentucky
Thu Dec 26, 2019 7:34 pm quote
Here's something that should enhance your braking. Crimaz.it - Found it on their Facebook page

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Enthusiast
P200e
Joined: 29 Jul 2018
Posts: 50
Location: Orange , Ca
Thu Dec 26, 2019 7:50 pm quote
Boom thats the ticket right there . Great braking and easy maintenance.
Ossessionato
'09 250 GTSie '75 Rally 200 '79 P200 '09 Stella 221
Joined: 13 May 2012
Posts: 2554
Location: Midway, Kentucky
Thu Dec 26, 2019 8:05 pm quote
Drum brakes can be tricky at best. I have no experience with small frame bikes, but P series bikes will fly with the right engine and gearing set-up. Always super sketchy riding something like this with little to no brakes. Al Harpham (Hot Rod Al) made a cool front drum brake set-up that works very well for a drum brake. He modified the brake cam, making it more progressive, while lengthening the attached brake lever, which adds more leverage. Atop the lever, he made an aluminum pulley that increased pulling force of the hand lever. The brake cable end is mounted solid ahead of the pulley, which also creates more pulling force. The drum is slotted for more abrasion and reduces build up of shoe residue as does the vent holes in the drum and the backing plate. I have a set of these on a P200, and they work very well for drum brakes. They're not discs, but they're not the crummy brakes that the bike came with. One of my dear friends had an off on the bike by grabbing too much brake. I also have another put away for my next P purchase.

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Hooked
1960 Allstate VNA, 1962 VNB
Joined: 19 May 2014
Posts: 139
Location: Cambria, CA
Thu Dec 26, 2019 10:29 pm quote
Tierney wrote:
I'm sure it does not help when the front end has only a spring and no shock to soften the blow. I also think it would be worth looking at the brake cam and relieving the front and rear edge of the brake shoe material. That's all I got.
Thanks for the suggestions. Iíll check the brake cam next.


You are right. The front end would feel much better it it had the damper. I have most of the parts to do the upgrade. I just need to determine the location for the bracket and to find someone to weld it on.
Molto Verboso
Joined: 03 Nov 2011
Posts: 1043
Location: Racing Capital of the World
Fri Dec 27, 2019 2:32 am quote
Itís most likely your tire mounted on the rim. If itís out-of-round, then this situation you have occurs. Try remounting they tire again or try a different tire. The issue is so prevalent that i have a known good tire & rim combo that i reserve for cases just like the one you are having with a grabby brake; i simply swap it out and test.
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