So I thought I would update the curious on the current state of the Merc's brakes. Given the condition that the front brakes were in, it should have came as no suprise that the rear were equally as bad. Although I really wanted to do a disc brake conversion on the front, it just wasn't in the budget, especially after discovering that all the brakes needed replacement.
I have also learned that I should stop looking at stuff, because everything that I touch on the Merc either needs repaired or replaced. Knowing that I am the third owner I have concluded that the first owner really took good care of the Merc and apparently owned it for quite awhile. The second owner did not own it for very long, used and abused it, and repairs were done either without common sense or with just plain stupidity. So now, not only do I have to repair items that are wore out, but I also have to repair (and find) mistakes. So far the list includes a leaking freeze plug, wore out radiator, bad spark plug wires, missing carburetor base gasket, leaking power steering ram, pump, and hoses, door locks not working, no keys, bad battery cables, missing battery hold down, missing thermostat, missing trunk lock, and that's just what I've found so far. What have I gotten myself into?
After removing all the wore out parts, I throughly cleaned the backing plates which seemed to be caked with 49 years of crud.
Here it is all cleaned, painted and ready for new parts.
Finally, new brakes! The original drums were pressed onto the hubs but the replacements are slip fit.
Of course that meant that I had to press in new wheel studs, but that gave me the opportunity to completely clean and detail the hubs.
I'll spare you the before shot of the rear brakes. Suffice to say it was polar opposite of what you're viewing here.
Why is it so much easier to remove stuff then it is to replace it? Notice the radiator missing? It was junk...
Work is progressing at a slow but steady rate. I am hoping to drive the big Merc to a major car show in a couple of weeks, but the jury is still out on weather or not it will be done in time. I guess "done" is a vague word, because is any project car ever really done? I'll leave you with those words of wisdom and a recent photo of the Merc wearing it's new shoes. Stay tuned, there's more to come! Now I need a break...