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[T3] Brakes Pulling to one side -- A REVELATION


You all need to know this to ensure that it doesn't happen to you.  Some
may recall that I noticed my car jerked to the right when I applied the
brakes.  This happened AFTER replacing the entire front brake system with
either new or NOS components (wheel cylinders, metal brake lines and rubber
brake hoses.  The only things that I didn't replace were the drums, springs
and brake shoes since the drums and springs were in good condition and
because I replaced the shoes two years ago with a set from Bill and Steve's.

After much head scratching and levying false blame on a weak spring, here
is what I found:  One of the brake shoes that came in the set (of 4) was
slightly different from the others.  The mounting hole for the smaller
spring (furthes/>ylinder) was about 1 cm farther from where it should
have been.  After close inspection, I discovered that there were several
slight cosmetic differences (metal corners shaped differently) between that
shoe, the other three Bill and Steve's shoes and the four stock shoes that
I removed from my car two years ago.  This location of the spring hole 1 cm
further from where it was supposed to be caused that spring to be under
more tension than its counterpart.  THIS caused the other shoe to dig into
the drum first, thus causing the car to jerk to that side when I applied
the brakes.  

The remedy?  I drilled a new brake spring mounting hole in the correct
location.  Now, the brakes work (almost?) as good as the day it rolled out
of Wolfsburg.  

Why didn't I notice this when I originally installed the new shoes?
Probably because the old wheel cylinders worked so poorly that their
inefficiency masked this problem.  It only surfaced once I replaced all the
other parts in the front brake system.

The moral?  Check ALL parts -- especially rebuilt ones such as brake shoes
and even wheel cylinders -- that you buy from suppliers.  That will add
another quality control step to ensure that you are putting proper and
matching parts on your dear T3.

Take care and Happy Independence Day to you fellow Americans.

Zagreb, Croatia

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