drum brakes too tight

I redid the drum brakes on my 97 Ford E150 van, including new shoes, wheel cylinders, springs, and drums. I adjusted the star wheel
adjusters to maximum looseness, but the shoes are still alittle too tight against the drum. I had to pound on the drums with a mallet to get them on. When I drove around the block once, the drums heated up alot, were smelling, and were dragging noticably. After a second and third time, they aren't heating up as much and are dragging less. I took it on a 14 mile trip to work and it seems better, although I think they're still binding at least a little. Is this a normal phenomenon or a dangerous situation, and why would the parts be designed so I can't make them looser?
Greg
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Take a look see at the Ebrake cable and check that the adjuster is backed all the way off. Will
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When you install new brakes, you are supposed to set up the emergency brake as well. Likely the e-brake got adjusted with thinner shoes or some time after the last brake job was done. You need to address that because the brake cables are now acting as one pivot point for the shoes and the cables usually won't last too long that way.... Something will give or stretch...
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Greg wrote:

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Greg wrote:

second the recommend to check the e-brake but also I have run into this same problem and I know it's not the e-brake as I currently have it on the front of my '55 Stude. I think some relined shoes are coming out with a little more material than the stock linings, assuming that the drums are going to be turned when the brake shoes are replaced. If you are frugal and your drums are in good shape and therefore you elect not to turn them you will have issues. I don't want to have my drums cut because 11" Stude drums are scarcer than hen's teeth these days in good shape. The correct solution would be to have the shoes "arced" (ground) to fit your drums, which a good brake shop will do for you for a small fee. However, the problem is that finding a shop that qualifies as "good" in this respect involves divining rods, incantations, and the sacrifice of small fuzzy woodland creatures (if anyone knows of one near Bowie or Annapolis, please let me know.)
Mine are loose enough I will probably let them wear in (but not as loose as I'd like,) but if you can actually smell them you probably should have it checked out.
good luck,
nate
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Thanks for both replies. The binding became less apparent, but I checked out the ebrake thing anyway. I loosened the cable about 5 turns or so, and that cured the problem. I was able to easily remove the drums and could adjust the star wheel adjuster things in either direction. After putting everything back together, I adjusted the star wheels until I couldn't turn the wheels by hand, and then backed off a few turns. Now everything works great. Thanks for the help. Greg
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Greg wrote:

glad to hear it worked out and it was an easy "fix."
just a note, might want to readjust after a couple hundred miles, the shoes tend to go out of adjustment pretty fast initially (unless they've been arced) after that the automatic adjusters can take up the slack easily.
nate
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Nate, If it's a real issue of to tight for your taste, Pull them off and "relieve" them on the ends where they sit in the adjuster and the cylinder a touch. Should give the clearance you want and you're not fooling with the drums. ( which ARE really hard to come by) Just a thought , Will
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