Original Rockies

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2015: Original Rockies
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Larry Smith on Friday, January 16, 2015 - 11:35 am:

Don Skille had his car up on a hoist at a recent gathering, and a comment was made that the Rocky Mountain Brakes were a lot simpler than what is made today. I agree, and have originals on all three of my T's. What happened is this: Jack Sunderlin, who made the first Rocky Mountain Brake reproductions was not mechanical, nor did he know how to do proper research, so he wound up adapting an equalizer setup from Bennett Brakes that works just the opposite of Rockies. That is why there is so much linkage today, plus, he had the back part of the brakes redesigned to resemble a 1926 brake that was made by AC I think.
Had he had done a little more research, and scoured swap meets, I sure he would have found the original parts. There are no special parts or tools needed to install them, and use a 3/16" cable and equalizer to operate them.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Friday, January 16, 2015 - 11:52 am:

Sounds great, how about posting some pictures? :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mike Spaziano, Bellflower, CA. on Friday, January 16, 2015 - 12:08 pm:

Larry,

I have, what appears to be, original AC large drum brakes on my '26 Touring. The castings have AC and the city that they were manufactured in (can't remember right now) in raised lettering. The brakes have been on the car, as far as I know, since the car was restored in '77. I do not know if these brakes were ever reproduced.
I know that small drum AC's are currently being reproduced by Larry Sidmore, but these are definitely big drum.

The band construction appears to be exactly like those supplied with the currently manufactured "Rocky Mountain Brake" set-up.

What confuses me is that they are actuated by rods rather than cables. Photos I have seen of AC brakes in original ads, here on the Forum, show cables. So, who knows?

I'll have it at the Orange County T Club's Inspection Day at Hoist Service tomorrow. If you like, you can give it a look there.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John Semprez-Templeton, CA on Friday, January 16, 2015 - 02:45 pm:

I had an original set of Rockies on my TT. I acquired the truck in 1963 from the first owner who bought the truck with an underdrive and brakes installed by the local dealer.

As stated, The brakes were very simple in design, unlike the the current design being sold, with a lever that actuated the bands via a single toggle. The brakes themselves were actuated by a cable and pulley affair terminating at a clamp/guide on the drive shaft tube, with a single rod and turnbuckle running to the RM pedal.

The brake mechanism was worn badly by the side load caused by the cable pull angle but was repaired by my Dad and by welding up the linkage, re drilling the holes and replacing the pins. When properly adjusted, the brakes were superb, locking the rear wheels when the brakes were fully applied (with some effort I should add).

I do not recall a problem with the brakes stopping the truck when backing. I wish I had pictures, but do not.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Larry Smith on Saturday, January 17, 2015 - 11:42 am:

John: I know nothing about the TT Rockies, but assume the brake pedal linkage would be the same as the car, which uses a clamp and rod to the equalizer.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John Semprez-Templeton, CA on Saturday, January 17, 2015 - 12:14 pm:

Larry, that looks like the same linkage. Mine had a RM pedal with the tab incorporated into the pedal arm. The pedal head was shaped like an older style teardrop pedal with "Rocky Mountain Brake" embossed on the face and a small "foot catching" tab protruding from the right side of the face.

Don't it always seem to go, you don't know what you got till it's gone.. I sold that truck in 1976 for $2000.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Norman T. Kling on Saturday, January 17, 2015 - 12:47 pm:

I can remember in the 1950's when I looked under a Model T and saw all those rods hanging there. It looked very much like the rods used for the Rockies sold today. I personally think the rods for applying the brakes to be safer and surer way to apply them than cables. I have known several who had the cables who could not seem to get them adjusted right.

I have a 26 roadster on which I installed Rocky mountain brakes back in 1989. The part which bolts to the rear axle has the letters AC on it. I have another 26 which I installed Rocky Mountain brakes in 2003. Those are exactly the same as the ones which say AC, but they have the name Rocky Mountain on them. I also have a set of Rockies on a small drum car. These have the large drums and the small drums. The large drums are for Rocky Mountain brakes and the small ones for the parking brake. I don't know when these were made or installed, because they were on the car when I purchased it. All these brakes work very well when adjusted correctly.
Norm


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