I consider one of the first milestone for bring a bike back to life is to getting it rolling. And the brakes and axles are the first step. In my case my project came with a complete rear drum assembly.
The sprocket for an Indian Chief is riveted on the drum. When the rivets loosen up the holes tend to wear out of round and the simple solution is to drill a new sets of holes. The drums I received had been drilled twice. And a fresh sprocket had been installed.
Unfortunately the bike didn't come with a front drum. 1937 was the first year of interchangeable rims. There are lug nuts that secure the Hub to the brake drum. In 1936 the drum and hub were an integral part. In 1938 a set of pins were added to lock the hub to the drum to added shear strength. It is important to be ever so vigilant and tighten the lugs on a Indian frequently. It is common for riders to loose all six lugs on a wheel. In the case of a rear wheel you won't be going anywhere if this happens since the sprocket is attached to the brake drum and not the hub.. And in the the case of either wheel you will loose your brakes on the wheel. So I started hunting for a front brake drum in the spring of 2010. The best I found was a brake drum for a side car but the threads were reversed for the bearing locking threads and I wasn't sure this would be an issue. So I kept looking. I found an original 1937 drum and bought it but it turned out to be worn beyond serviceable limits. I then came by 1938 drum and bought it. The hub would cover up any 38isms.
Now after a year searching for used brake drums. Todd at Jerry Greer Engineering came out with New reproduction front and back brake drums which are spot on. I was in a hurry to hit my first mile stone, if I only would have been a little more patient I would have saved lots of time and money and had better brakes. So I've bought the reproduction front and back drums and I'll be selling the used ones I paid top dollar for. Which means I bought high and will be selling low. Next Posting: IronHorse Fenders and Tank.
San Francisco, CA