1981 CJ7 Restoration - 2019.12.26

With the 1-piece axles assembled and installed into the housing, it was time to move on to building up the rear drum brakes. I'll note at this time the axles are extremely hard to turn and there may be too much preload on the bearings. Once I have the axle mounted to the frame I will be able to test the ability to spin the axles with a tire on it. I'm supposed to be able to get one rotation with just one wheel/tire attached and no brake drum. If that doesn't happen, I'll shim the flange ends to reduce some of the preload. This is non-ideal, but I believe it will do the trick and offer more flexibility with tuning bearing preload as things break in.

Axles installed and differential cover attached.

Assembling the rear drum brakes seems a little complicated at first, but once you see how everything goes together, it's pretty intuitive. The following are record photos to remind myself how everything goes together.

During part of the assembly I confused myself by turning the axle upside down to work on installing the adjusters. At the same time, I installed the parking brake cables and got them mixed up! Looks like I'll be taking everything apart and reassembling once I have the axle attached to the frame.

Record photos for the drum brake builds.

Rear axle finished - well, enough to attach to the frame at least.

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