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Thread: How do I tighten the handbrake?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    London
    Posts
    68

    How do I tighten the handbrake?

    Hi everyone,

    Can someone tell me how I adjust the handbrake?

    At the moment the handbrake lever movement is a bit excessive.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    BANCHORY
    Posts
    3,160
    There is no adjustment. Hand brake is supposed to adjust itself automatically.
    Drives a Smart Cdi - 65 to 85 MPG

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    uk
    Posts
    780
    Maybe a good service of the rear drums will help matters ..
    You're so money supermarket and you don't even know it!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    BANCHORY
    Posts
    3,160
    The brake shoes are too often incorrectly fitted when serviced by garages and incompetent mechanics. Not entirely their fault since most brake shoe manufactures depict their brake shoe assemblies for the Smart 450 & 451 incorrectly.

    To start fault finding kindly confirm if brake pedal is normal with minimal travel.
    Drives a Smart Cdi - 65 to 85 MPG

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    BANCHORY
    Posts
    3,160


    Above photo shows the springs-rod-rack mechanism on a 450 located just below hand brake lever. Mechanism on a 451 is nearly identical. The mechanism connects hand brake cables to hand brake lever. A long small diameter spring hidden from view in above photo preloads the mechanism in vertical up direction.

    How does the mechanism work?
    The long small diameter spring tensions the handbrake cables. It will not apply the brakes as rather weak. The ratchet is disengaged when handbrake lever is down. This allows the above spring to push rod upwards. Ratchet engages when you pull handbrake lever and cables are tensioned and brakes applied. The mechanism adjusts itself each time you lower handbrake lever to its rest position.

    To confirm above mechanism is fully operational you have to get under the car. Hand brake must be fully lowered in off position. Pull and push on rod to confirm small spring is intact and that mechanism can move freely. Coat the whole and all of above mechanism in wicking grease to lubricate and protect from corrosion.

    I have a better photo somewhere and will post if I can find it.
    Drives a Smart Cdi - 65 to 85 MPG

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    BANCHORY
    Posts
    3,160
    Photos of handbrake auto adjusting mechanism:





    Drives a Smart Cdi - 65 to 85 MPG

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