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1963 C20 brakes - some questions
#1365955 Mon Jun 22 2020 04:09 PM
Joined: Apr 2020
Posts: 104
G
Shop Shark
Finally got the truck running good. Now I need to check on the brakes.

Thinking about keeping the manual brakes,with the single cylinder. Has anyone done this? Brakes work ok?

Can I just add a power booster to the existing single master cylinder (RockAuto)? Is this driven by manifold vacuuM Can I just tee off the PCV valve hose?

Also, are there many differences in brake shoe sizes on these trucks? Rockauto lists a few different options - do I need to disassemble everything and measure the drums first?

Last edited by GeorgeCz; Mon Jun 22 2020 04:15 PM.

1963 C20, 292 (4.8L). 4-speed.
Re: 1963 C20 brakes - some questions
GeorgeCz #1366074 Tue Jun 23 2020 02:16 PM
Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 228
W
Shop Shark
Thinking about keeping the manual brakes,with the single cylinder. Has anyone done this? Brakes work ok?
Yes, I did it, and yes it works okay. I could lock up all four wheels with my original master cylinder and drums; however, the drums require periodic adjustment to keep that good stopping power. Also, my drums faded pretty bad when they got wet. Pretty much the only advantage discs will have over drums is the lack of adjustment, and much less brake fade.

Can I just add a power booster to the existing single master cylinder (RockAuto)? Is this driven by manifold vacuuM Can I just tee off the PCV valve hose?
Captain Fab over at 67-72chevytrucks makes a bolt on bracket for power boosters. Personally, I like the simplicity of manual brakes.

Also, are there many differences in brake shoe sizes on these trucks? Rockauto lists a few different options - do I need to disassemble everything and measure the drums first?
Someone else should chime in on this one. I would say the 2.75" wide shoes are what you want, but to be sure you should check out what you have first. Or just order them off of amazon with free returns in case they are the wrong size, haha


'66 c10 rust bucket, 350 nv4500 stock bellhousing, '85 c30 front suspension, h072 rear axle with 3/4 ton rear coil springs
'67 cj5 225 oddfire motor, time for disc brake conversion, offset rear dana 44, intermediate pedals and steering upgrade
'48 3804 frame and bed + '52 6400 cab and front clip + 4bt, need to put them together
Re: 1963 C20 brakes - some questions
whateverpratt #1366998 Mon Jun 29 2020 04:24 PM
Joined: Apr 2020
Posts: 104
G
Shop Shark
Originally Posted by whateverpratt
Thinking about keeping the manual brakes,with the single cylinder. Has anyone done this? Brakes work ok?
Yes, I did it, and yes it works okay. I could lock up all four wheels with my original master cylinder and drums; however, the drums require periodic adjustment to keep that good stopping power. Also, my drums faded pretty bad when they got wet. Pretty much the only advantage discs will have over drums is the lack of adjustment, and much less brake fade.

Can I just add a power booster to the existing single master cylinder (RockAuto)? Is this driven by manifold vacuuM Can I just tee off the PCV valve hose?
Captain Fab over at 67-72chevytrucks makes a bolt on bracket for power boosters. Personally, I like the simplicity of manual brakes.

Also, are there many differences in brake shoe sizes on these trucks? Rockauto lists a few different options - do I need to disassemble everything and measure the drums first?
Someone else should chime in on this one. I would say the 2.75" wide shoes are what you want, but to be sure you should check out what you have first. Or just order them off of amazon with free returns in case they are the wrong size, haha

Thanks for the info.
Yeah, I figure I can just get one set of brakes and return them if they do not fit.

Fortunately, I live in SoCal, so not a lot of wet weather. I'll stick with the manual brakes for now.

Does anyone know of an upgrade for auto adjust brakes?

Last edited by GeorgeCz; Mon Jun 29 2020 04:24 PM.

1963 C20, 292 (4.8L). 4-speed.

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