By James D. Lane, Owner Model C, Ser. #1969


General Description:


The Earthmaster Tractor is equipped with mechanically operated disc brakes which in 1948 were not all that common. The system uses two splined discs per wheel that rotate with the axels and they are sandwiched between a milled surface on the axel hub and a milled surface on the transmission case.


The lined brake discs are held between a stationary actuator that expands outward in both directions when the brakes are applied which forces the rotating disc in against the milled surfaces. The actuating disc, and there are two per wheel, also have a milled surface that mates with the back side of the rotating disc. The rotating discs are lined on both sides.


Between the actuator discs are three ball bearings that set in tapered grooves and are held there by two very short but strong springs. When the brakes are applied the bearings move in the tapered groves, causing the actuators to expand outwards against the rotating disc whereby the brakes are applied.




When overhauling the Earthmaster brakes you can fabricate your own replacement lining but it is more trouble than its worth. The lining material is 1/8 thick and is difficult to find, and then you have to measure and cut out the pads with a hole saw. There are eight cuts or eight separate pads when the fabrication is complete. You can rivet the pads to your existing disc, but its difficult with 1/8 thick lining, or you can purchase a two part epoxy glue and cold bond the lining. I know one guy that uses liquid weld on his four wheeler brakes. If you do it yourself plan on spending about $40.00 plus a heck of a lot of time and effort.


Make absolutely sure the lining is no thicker than 1/8 thick, otherwise you wont be able to synch up the axle hub against the transmission housing. I found it necessary to shim up one of the axle hubs using gaskets fabricated from material purchased at Auto Zone. The shimming was needed because the lining mashed against the milled surfaces when the bolts were drawn causing the brakes to lock up. You may need to use two or three gaskets.


I replaced the four hub bolts with studs because it makes for easier lifting, plus studs tend to draw up with less stress on the threads and metal. Use fine thread and lock washers on the nut end of the studs.


Save yourself a lot of headaches and find a break relining company and have them reline the disc for you. I found several companies on the Internet and Im happy to say that I received excellent service from a company in Minneapolis, Minnesota called Brake Equipment Warehouse.


I removed the old lining from my disc and sent them to the brake company. If your old pads were bonded dont bother trying to remove the pads. The company can heat them in the oven and they will slide right off. The company oven bonded the lining to my old disc and charged me a grand total of $98.00 which included lining, labor and shipping.


Brake Equipment Warehouse is located at 455 Harrison Street, North East, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55413. Phone 1 (800) 233-4053 and ask for Rob. You can also e-mail him at


The brake actuator springs were broken on my Earthmaster Tractor but I was able to purchase them locally at Cross and Sons Farm Equipment. They are located at 10248 Chillicothe Pike, Jackson, Ohio 45640. Phone 1 (740) 286-1966. The cost was $5.00 for each of the four springs and I had to buy a set of four. You can also go to Lee Springs on the Internet and probably order the springs from them. Mac Master Carr is another spring company that comes to mind. You may need to send an old spring for identity purposes as I do not have a part number.


I hope this helps and believe me, I could have used this information when I restored my brakes. If you have any questions you can e-mail me, Jim Lane at