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Old 05-29-2002, 12:39 AM   #1
Concillian
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Default Call for *technical* discussion of the new Wilwood 4 pot kit being sold

There are now two vendors in the Vendor classifieds selling a 4 pot Wilwood front kit, which I first saw a week or so ago. The kit uses a stock size rotor.

After questioning several parties I've finally come to determine it's using the Dynalite caliper with all equal bores at 1.75"

A measurement of the stock bores shows about 1.5" for each pot(~3.13 sq. in total area), which, from what I've gathered is very similar to the bores for the Subaru 4 pot caliper (though I haven't measured them).

The Wilwood 6 pot kit uses 1.62/1.12/1.12 bores (~4.04 sq. inches)

This Dynalite kit at 1.75" bores would be a total of ~4.8 sq. inches, 20% MORE than the 6 pot kit and on a significantly less beefy caliper.

Also the pad is pretty thin, at only 0.5" INCLUDING backing plate.

Won't the bias be thrown significantly off by providing so much more torque than stock? Even taking into account that the 6 pot kit uses larger calipers, the Dynalite kit is STILL providing more torque, and was that caliper really designed for a 3200 pound car?

The 6 pot providing more than stock seems 1) like a more normal amount and 2) it's designed to be used with the rear upgrade at the same time, which I would assume has a similar boost in torque over stock to preserve bias.

After feeling what the H6 did for my car on stock brakes (it felt more stable on high speed braking, no real difference at low speed) I'm not convinced it's a good thing to then add 50% more torque to the front brakes (probably plus more if you get higher mu pads)

My feeling is that the superlite 4 would be a much better caliper for a front caliper only (stock rotor) upgrade. With differential bores (1.75" and 1.38") giving a total of ~3.9 sq. in., a seemingly more favorable number when used with a modification like the H6 rear to preserve bias. Also a significantly beefier caliper and a full quarter inch of additional pad thickness (not to mention the increased pad area).

One vendor claims that this Dynalite upgrade kit will reduce fade, yet I'm not sure I see how...insights?

I guess what I'm fishing for is a solid reason why the Dynalite is a good caliper for the front brakes. Obviously it was chosen over the superlite 4 becuase of cost, but at what expense? I WANT to like the kit (it's cheap after all) but I'm not convinced it's a better solution than the Subaru 4 pots, or even the stock brakes.

Hence a call here for a more technical analysis of the kit than I am at all qualified to give for myself.

Any thoughts?

Edit: Hmm vendor response says bore size is 35.1mm (1.38") PM from an owner suggests 1.75, neither seem totally confident. I still think neither is ideal, as 1.38 would be significantly SMALLER than stock. Since the same vendor claims a greater than 40% increase in brake torque I will have to assume that 1.75" is correct.
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Last edited by Concillian; 05-29-2002 at 01:25 AM.
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Old 05-29-2002, 03:28 AM   #2
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Concillian we recently had this big brake debate and you can look at what has been said by searching for the thread "Looking for objective data on Subaru 4-pot" or something close to that or search for TerrenceT who started the thread. Personally I would not think that bias would be changed tremendously but adding a proportioning valve is cheap and fairly easy and might be a way to ease some of your fears. I personally believe in the 4-pot since it is race proven on david higgins AVsport prepared car that has won the last three pro rally events. I know one person that has this setup on his car and absolutely hates it for three reasons, brake dust, noise, and no noticeable improvement (according to him). I feel that whenever possible to use OEM parts I do if there is not significant evidence that an after market manufacturers product is better. I live in SO cal and would be happy to arrange a test where we can end the debate since I know several places where we can conduct accurate tests of braking distances. AP and Brembo make a superior product and if I was going to go with anything besides the 4-pot I would buy either of those systems (add alcon to that list) over willwood since those companies (Brembo and AP have merged ) posess superior technology gained through motorsports involvement. SO here is the challenge calling on all 4-pot, Willwood, AP, Alcon/Prodrive, and Brembo owners in SO cal to email me tifosi77@hotmail.com to set up a conclusive test we can set parameters like using the same tires so that we limit the variables.
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Old 05-29-2002, 05:10 AM   #3
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Realistically you shouldn't have to measure every single combo out there for stopping distances. You should be able to simply determine the effects of brake torque and bias, and that data could be extrapolated to any caliper/rotor combo when referenced to the stock design.

For instance is 50% more torque up front helpful or harmful? Because I can think of situations where it would degrade stopping distances.

Would a proportioning valve fix the problem and yield better results.

Things like that should be a larger help to the community as a whole. You'll never get enough variables constant between different brake kits to give everyone enough knowledge for their particular situation. For instance, you can't put the same pad on every caliper, there's no brand that makes pads for ALL of the available calipers, ore even the popular ones, is there?

But if results are more generalized, in terms of torque (by using different different piston sized calipers on stock rotors, or different coefficient of friction pads, and/or larger rotors) we could build a database to tell us if xyz brake upgrade is really worth it in terms of stopping distances. Obviously fade resistance is a primary concern to many as well, so 20 or so stops in a row would probably be a significant benefit.

Most any brake upgrade will provide better feel, but objective data on stopping distances for different levels of torque and F/R bias would be REALLY interesting (to me anyway). My feeling is that many of the brake upgrades are not improving, or potentially degrading, stopping distances over stock (before fade would set in), even though that is not the perception because of the change in pedal feel.

Any brake upgrade can be broken down in terms of torque applied compared to stock setup within reasonable error, which is why I suggest looking at things that way. It shouldn't matter what caliper is providing that torque, 10% more torque than stock is 10% more torque than stock.

Any sort of significant data gathering like that I'd definitely chip in for. I'd easily offer $20-50 depending on the amount of planning and real effort to get useful data for the community. There seems such a lack of useful information in this area of performance that is so critical.

We all want to decrease stopping distances, but we rarely know if the mods we're making really do or not. Short of upgraded pads and rubber all around, I have no idea if anything actually drops stopping distance.
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Old 05-29-2002, 08:29 AM   #4
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Brake torque= (force applied*coefficient of friction between pad and rotor) * effective radius

Since force applied is dictated by your foot, booster and master cylinder you can conclude this is constant as long as you keep the former the same.

The formula below is a decent way to estimate what, if any, increase you have in brake torque after an upgrade:


Brake Torque Increase %=

[(caliper piston area new/old) * (effective radius new/old)* (brake pad friction coefficient new/old)]

*effective radius is the distance from the center of the hub to the center of the brake pad

*For sliding calipers multiply the areas by 2

Any answer equal to 1 means no increase. Any answer less than 1 means you've gone backwards. Any answer greater than 1 means a torque increase.



Now things like steel lines, stiffer calipers effect feel not performance. Only force applied, torque arm and friction do that. You can change things like lines, calipers, pedals and boosters to change the characteristics. Such as, initial bite point and initial deceleration level, pedal travel and effort, pedal force mulitiplication. However, these do not actually produce more brake torque.

Lower or higher pedal ratio, stiffer calipers, larger or smaller master cylinder, SS lines and such change the shape of your brake torque vs. pedal travel curve but do not change the area below that curve. They may also, along with fluid, change the amount of brake torque loss (fade).



As far as "brake balance" this is a really misnomer on cars with long wheelbases (over 80"). At this point the front and rear become basically separate, you set the rears and fronts so that each works best for it's axle not with each other. The nice thing about that is that you can upgrade either end to produce the best braking. OEMs setup the rears so they don't lock-up under most circumstances. The OEMs biggest fear is rear brake lock up.

Now more aggressive braking will change the cars dive dynamics possibly cause the rears to lose contact, so it may be a bad thing to increase rear brake torque. But in the end it's a full dynamic system and each one must be evaluated individually. USE YOUR COMMON SENSE.




Links to Brake Knowledge Threads

Brake Performance Vs. Brake Feel
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Old 05-29-2002, 10:14 AM   #5
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Step 1: Decide if Wilwood quality meet your needs. If yes,
Step 2: Order (2) differential bore (1.75/1.38) Dynalites for $120 each and a set of pads for $48.
Step 3: Order Subaru specific caliper mounts from Lachute Subaru for C$150 (US$98).
Step 4: Bolt it all together with some budget SS teflon lines and you're good to go for <$400.

I'm not saying I recommend this setup, since it retains the stock front rotors but if you're looking for 4-pot feel (and a HUGE savings in unsprung weight) on a budget, you don't need to pay a vendor lots of $$$ for assembling a kit from off the shelf parts.

Edit: FYI, the AP Racing 4-pots have 3.84in^2 of piston area, and the AP 6-pots have 3.89in^2. Those specs wouldn't be a bad target to shoot for when choosing calipers.

Last edited by Jon Bogert; 05-29-2002 at 10:30 AM.
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Old 05-29-2002, 10:37 AM   #6
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Jon you jit the nail on the head, but I do think that there may be on pad manufacturer that makes pads for at least 3 of the four mentioned brands and that would be AP racing pads (just a thought) and we could use one set of rims so that all the cars had the same tires, we could also use one test driver so that there was less variation there, any thoughts you could share would be appreciated. WHile I see what you are going for I still think that Willwood is an inferior product when you are examining fit and finish but hey I am willing to be proven wrong. I know of two places that we could use for tests as well. Hey if somebody on the other coast wants to take the time to do it I would pitch some $$$ on it. Remeber we would also have to measure temp of rotors, and track temp as well since these are two other variables, we could do stopping distance, torque, stopping distance after X amount of passes to wee which kit provides the most fade resistance (assuming all fluid s equal Motul or AP 600 will do) I wnat to seee this get off the ground.
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Old 05-29-2002, 11:05 AM   #7
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I think this whole issue of reduced braking distances is moot. From any sane speed on street tires more braking power won't give any improvment over the already very decent stock calipers. If you really want to test braking power, put some R-compound tires on the cars and test braking from 140-0, not 70-0.

Much more important in the real world is feel, and that's not very measurable. My AP brakes with AP's basic pad, feel like they have less "power" than my stock calipers with Mintex 1155s. It's much harder to lock a wheel. But the braking has improved tremendously! I can control the lockup threshold so much better now. Would I stop shorter in a straight line braking test? Probably not much. Would I be able to brake later and deeper into a medium radius turn without locking or unsettling the car? Like you wouldn't believe!
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Old 05-29-2002, 12:33 PM   #8
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Does anyone have a picture of the bracket, and what material is it made of?

/David
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Old 05-29-2002, 01:06 PM   #9
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The bracket is the "intellectual property" of any brake kit. With a mill or drill press and all the other components, any shop can make their own with trial and error. Wilwood sells blank brackets machined on one end for their caliper and you machine the other to fit the stock mounts on your upright.

But no, I don't have a picture.
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Old 05-29-2002, 01:18 PM   #10
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I hope they didn't use the brackets from wilwood, they are about 3/8" thick in aluminum, ProECM has developed bracket exactly for this conversion. The first try we made an 1/2" thick aluminum bracket, IT BROKE under heavy braking after a period of time. It was also very loud (squeal). Brake squeal can be mitigated incredibly by making a more rigid bracket. So after 6 month of testing on real street cars, we have come up with a very rigid bracket made of steel that allows you to run plymatrix-D or Gator pads with no squeal, this was not possible with the aluminum ones. Suby sports (www.subysports.com) are going to sell these brackets for us. We are going to sell them cheap enough so that you can put your own kit together as described by Jon cheaper than what these other guys are selling it for.

/David
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Old 05-29-2002, 01:39 PM   #11
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BTW these will probably be available by the end of next week.

/David
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Old 05-29-2002, 02:12 PM   #12
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Can you clarify the point of this bracket?

It is for mounting any Wilwood caliper on the front of the 2002(pre 2002 also?) Impreza? Is it limited to the Dynalites or can it fit the Superlites too?
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Old 05-29-2002, 02:41 PM   #13
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These brackets are for mounting Wilwood Dynalite (billet @~$120 0r II@~$100) calipers on any subaru with WRX size rotors.

The reasons for going with the dynalite caliper are:

1, Best bang for the buck. The setups we have done are performing extremely well. I compared it to a WRX with the subaru 4-pots, EBC slotted rotors and EBC red pads. The wilwood system performed at least as well. As stated earlier the piston size is big enough to provide tremendous pressure (for incredible torque). Brake bias has not really been an issue, as stated by romanom the diving effect you get by improving the front brakes doesn't really allow for too much more friction in the rear. If you would stiffen up the car to retain most of the weight on the rears, you could probably increase the friction to achieve even better stopping.

2, Extremely light (~3 lbs with pads each). You shed ~6.5 lbs of the stock unsprung weight on a 2000 RS, even more on a WRX due to its larger rotors.

3, Size, these are very compact calipers that allows you to run even a 15" wheel if you choose the right one. The problem on the WRX is that the stock wheel is very shallow so another caliper would be hard to get under there.

4, Availability and price of pads. If you ask anyone with real racing (hobby or professional) experince. They will tell you that wilwood has been around forever, hence the increbile selection of pads for their calipers. Wilwood has 7 different pads, hawk has 3 i think, performance friction has 4 I think, the list goes on. Price range is $30 - $90. Extremely cheap for being true racing pads.


/David
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Old 05-29-2002, 02:47 PM   #14
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Zahnster, anything that fits the 2002 will also fit the earlier models, assuming you have the right rotors .

Brake mounting points/front hub assembly haven't changed in a long time...I THINK 1993, but I'm not sure. I feel very confident it would be the same bak to at least 1998, but probably 1993.

I look forward to such a product, and like Jon's idea. It seems like the 1.75/1.38 differential would be a better match for our brakes. I hadn't really thought about it that way, thanks Jon.

Romanom --
Perhaps the use of the word bias is incorrect but the premise is the same if you treat the axles independently.

Does changing the front braking so much without changing the rear affect the overall braking dynamics of the car negatively or positively.

Given what you said:
Quote:
OEMs setup the rears so they don't lock-up under most circumstances. The OEMs biggest fear is rear brake lock up.
It seems like (aside from feel, which I KNOW the calipers will provide) adding so much torque to the front will, in a panic stop/ABS activating situation, simply lock the fronts sooner and negatively impact braking distances, either by F/R imbalance or by causing excess dive and removing weight from the rear. Either way of looking at it results in a similar conclusion the way I'm envisioning it anyway.

What I want to know is 'am I envisioning it correctly?' Or am I way off base.

As I said, I'm less concerned about feel, as almost any 4 pot caliper will provide a better feel and pedal modulation than the 2 pots, that should be a given. I'm talking about stopping distances in an emergency situation while driving around in traffic. The last thing I want to do is "upgrade" to a setup that will be more dangerous in a situation like that.

Edit: Man sometimes I overlook the obvious...dive adds weight to the front which would also add to the threshold at which they would lock... okay I feel dumb about not seeing that, thanks proecm.
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Old 05-29-2002, 03:09 PM   #15
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>It seems like (aside from feel, which I KNOW the calipers will
>provide) adding so much torque to the front will, in a panic
>stop/ABS activating situation, simply lock the fronts sooner and
>negatively impact braking distances, either by F/R imbalance or
>by causing excess dive and removing weight from the rear.

Well, if you are using stock tires this might be an issue, if that is the case, I would encourage you to use your money on better tires before getting better brakes. That will improve braking as well. If you already have better tires, which I am sure you do, the dynalite setup will significantly shorten the braking distance. (I don't have the exact numbers yet.) Larry Ganz (I am sure you have heard of him) has been running around on this setup for the last three weeks or so. He seems to be very happy with them. You can ask him to see what he thinks about them.

/David
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Old 05-29-2002, 03:56 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally posted by Concillian

Romanom --
Perhaps the use of the word bias is incorrect but the premise is the same if you treat the axles independently.

Does changing the front braking so much without changing the rear affect the overall braking dynamics of the car negatively or positively.

It seems like (aside from feel, which I KNOW the calipers will provide) adding so much torque to the front will, in a panic stop/ABS activating situation, simply lock the fronts sooner and negatively impact braking distances, either by F/R imbalance or by causing excess dive and removing weight from the rear. Either way of looking at it results in a similar conclusion the way I'm envisioning it anyway.

What I want to know is 'am I envisioning it correctly?' Or am I way off base.


As far as the fronts, well if you increase front torque then you will have more dynamic momentum push down on the front tires (from the body accelerating downwards) which increases front tire contact. This postpones lock-up. It becomes a tricky balance. All brake systems will cause lock up at a certain brake torque for a given suspension, tire and body dynamic.

Now here's the balancing act. If you increase brake torque, yes you get lock-up sooner but your still creating more brake torque. So you will have better braking distance. But in the real world if your getting lock-up very early then it becomes very hard to be smooth. So your constantly modulating the pedal and the braking becomes very jerky.

This can also happen if you have a lot of initial bite from a poorly tuned brake booster. Drive any '80's Audi and you'll understand.

As you can imagine, if you can't utilize the brake torque because of that then what use is it. In the real world there is a certain point where it is just too much. Where that point is depends on many factors, including the driver.


Me personally, the BMW 3 series (both E36 and E46) have always been perfect for me. Some of my friends who have driven my car or their own get sea sick from all the head bopping under braking. And end up actually increase braking distance because of all the on-off they have to do. But for me it's right on for my style and to be honest I doubt I could improve the distance of the stock system, some others might.


As far as bias, if you increase the fronts and have dynamic mass come off the rear then any increase in the rear's brake torque will just cause lock-up sooner and make the car more unstable. This is why Porsches are such great brakers, it's not the fancy components (though that helps) it's the great weight balance. I mean it's 40/60, so even under very hard braking the dynamic balance doesn't go very much past 60/40. Again though, increase from what? If the rears are so "underbraked" from the factory then there's some room for improvement.


Brakes are a precarious balance of power, feel and stability. Many times (most actually) these are in conflict. Lots of brake power tends to screw up stability and many times a brake system that gives you lots of brake power feels like crap. Brakes in many ways are like a computer OS, no matter how much it can do it's useless if the user interface is poor.


just never assume that more is better for YOU. Ever wonder why in many mag reviews cars with aggressive tires and big Brembos do no better than stock, because the guy pushing on the pedal can't do better than stock.
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Old 05-29-2002, 04:16 PM   #17
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That stuff above is commonly know in the industry as the

Short Pedal Travel v. Long Pedal Travel


in other words, do you produce high brake torque early in the pedal travel or have the driver push farther in to get the high brake torque.

The former is more "sporty" braking, but the later is easier for most people because it's easier to be smooth.

Most European companies tend to the short travel, most US tend to the long.
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Old 05-29-2002, 04:46 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by romanom

just never assume that more is better for YOU.
That's kind of what I was trying to understand with the post in the first place. It seems like in this case there may be too much, but you're right it depends on the entire system (including the driver). It seems like to really KNOW how much too much requires a lot of effort (and money)

I think for now I'll probably stick with the 2 pots (I've already upgraded them about as much as I can, and there has been significant improvement to feel) and see if anything else develops that will fit under wide 16" wheels that's not $2000 (like the Brembo/AP/308mm kit and the AP 4 pot/310mm kit)
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Old 05-29-2002, 04:57 PM   #19
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>I think for now I'll probably stick with the 2 pots (I've already
>upgraded them about as much as I can, and there has been
>significant improvement to feel) and see if anything else
>develops that will fit under wide 16" wheels that's not $2000
>(like the Brembo/AP/308mm kit and the AP 4 pot/310mm kit)

I don't know if I explained it wrong, but the brackets we (ProECM) have developed makes it possible to use the dynalite 4-pot calipers under any 16" stock rim. This for a total cost of less than 1/3 of the above.

/David
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Old 05-29-2002, 05:02 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by Concillian


It seems like to really KNOW how much too much requires a lot of effort (and money)

Yeah, even companies like Ford and Bosch take a few years to get it right and even then it's not completely successful. If they where all the aftermarket companies would be out of business.


I just always try and discourage people from going from stock to $5000 Brembos when they neither have the skills nor car to use them.


And find out what others are doing (that actually drive their cars in racing or aggressively) as most racers aren't prone to falling for hype or spending money without a purpose.


Here's my take on my Wagon:

I think a 330mm front rotor with a slight increase in caliper piston area and a .46 mu pad. With the H6 rear rotors and the stock pads or a .46 mu rear pad will do quite nicely. As far as caliper, I would get fixed ones if I could afford it for the great benefit in feel.

Now I have SSR Comps in 17x7.5 shod with 225/45ZR17 S-03s and Tein springs which lower the CG about 25mm and the front springs are 18% stiffer while the rears are 6% stiffer. I also have a rear 20mm sway bar, but this won't effect braking.
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Old 05-29-2002, 05:35 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally posted by proecm
>I think for now I'll probably stick with the 2 pots (I've already
>upgraded them about as much as I can, and there has been
>significant improvement to feel) and see if anything else
>develops that will fit under wide 16" wheels that's not $2000
>(like the Brembo/AP/308mm kit and the AP 4 pot/310mm kit)

I don't know if I explained it wrong, but the brackets we (ProECM) have developed makes it possible to use the dynalite 4-pot calipers under any 16" stock rim. This for a total cost of less than 1/3 of the above.

/David
So David when are you going to introduce your brake kit?
is the Price range around 5-600(US)?

I am interested let me know. I may be in the market for a set of 4 pots (I am looking at Subaru 4 pots now)


Cheers

Nick
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Old 05-29-2002, 05:55 PM   #22
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He said earlier:

Quote:
BTW these will probably be available by the end of next week
He also said that it was just the bracket and you source your own calipers and pads, summit sells the billet dynalite for $123 a piece and Polymatrix D (a typical preformance street type pad) for $42

Then you'd need Wilwood lines to mate up with the caliper, which I'm not sure where to get them specifically for Subaru with a proper strut mount and correct threads on the chassis end. But they should be around $50

This would put it around $350 - 375 plus whatever the bracket and hardware cost.

I've worked with www.precisionbrakescompany.com in the past and they were very helpful, they are a long time Wilwood retailer and also have reasonable knowledge of the Subaru (though it may not show on their site, when I spoke with them, they at least knew what they were talking about when it came to Subarus, more than can be said of MANY generic Wilwood retailers.)
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Old 05-29-2002, 06:21 PM   #23
proecm
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The plan is to sell both brackets and Stainless steel brake lines as a package, so that you will have everything necessary to do the install.

/David
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Old 05-29-2002, 08:04 PM   #24
Ru fan
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Hey guys, great topic! A nice change from the usual "Will this offset work?", and the "How do these rims look?" topics which seem to take over this forum from time to time. I have nothing real to add...sorry. Keep this one alive!

Later,
Seth E.
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Old 05-29-2002, 08:16 PM   #25
Patrick Olsen
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David - Sounds very promising. I've been resisting upgrading my brakes because, well, I don't really need to, but it would certainly help on the track to have something a bit more competent. The Dynalites with WRX rotors sounds like a nice, relatively inexpensive combo, and significantly lighter than the STi 4 pots to boot. Hmmmm....

Pat Olsen
'97 Legacy 2.5GT sedan
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