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Old 06-19-2003, 09:27 PM   #1
wrxsvt
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Default Brake advice needed for road/track

Stock WRX brakes don't cut it for track use, so I'm going to change a few things. However, I only track the car 2-4 times per year, so it's not like I need to go nuts and get a Stoptech kit or anything (as much as I'd like to!). Anyway, I can get Subie 4-pots really cheap due to having several hundred in SubaruBucks saved up, so I'll probably start there. Pad wear with the stock 2-pots is tapered and uneven after tracking the car, so clearly they aren't stout enough. The rotors and pads are in question though.

I've determined that I need two sets of pads; something like Carbotech Panther Plus for the track and then Bobcats or maybe Ultimates for the street. BUT, apparently not all brake compounds get along with each other on the same rotor (I think Bobcats and Panther Plus do, not sure about P+ and Ultimates?). Anyone have experience switching pads back and forth? Which pads did you bed on the rotors, the race or street? Or did you try two sets of rotors?

For rotors, I've thought about just doing two sets of stockers since they're cheap, I'll have different pad compounds, and the P+ will chew them up. However, on track it might be nice to have a 2-piece rotor to keep temps on the bearings down; how much does that REALLY matter given my 2-4 events per year? DBA5000s are literally 5x more expensive than stock rotors, and the Ion 2-piece aren't far behind, and that's pretty hard to justify. If I got the 2-piece, I'd want that to be my only set of rotors, but now we're back to the pad issue again and which pads to bed on the rotors and if they'll get along. . .

So basically, thanks for taking the time to read this drivel, and if you have any experience or have been in my shoes, please get out of my shoes and tell me what you did and how it worked .
Thanks

Phil

One other thing, how necessary are the shims that come with the 'pad kit' that's used by the 4-pots? I know they are only there for noise, but has anyone run without and did it matter from a noise perspective?
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Old 06-20-2003, 08:18 AM   #2
sdecker
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Bump...I'm looking for the same info.



Scott
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Old 06-20-2003, 10:25 AM   #3
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I run Hawk HPS for daily street driving and swap out the pads for track use. For the track I run Hawk 9012 Blues in the front and Hawk HP Plus in the rear .... I do not change the rotors they work fine with both pad combos ..... this set up gives my car tremendous braking performance at the track and good manners on the street





brake search page

you will not find the track pads on our site ,,, you will need to call for that info


877-522-8473 ext. 362
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Old 06-20-2003, 10:42 AM   #4
MNbiker
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I run Carbotech Bobcats for autoX/street and Carbotech Panther XP's for track. I use the same rotors, simply doing a quick re-bedding when I swap pads, per Carbotech's directions. According to Carbotech, the two compounds are quite compatible with each other, and my presonal experience confirm this.

This combo works great! The Bobcats are an awesome pad for street & autox - excellent bite, firm pedal, very little dust and no squealing. FYI - I had Ultimates before the Bobcats. The feel was inferior to the Bobcats and they dusted a lot.

IMPORTANT NOTE: I only swap out the front pads. I leave the Bobcats in the back, and have NEVER overheated the rear brakes. This is pretty easy to verify, because the 500 degree paint on the rear pads still looks like new. (I HAVE smoked the paint on both sets of front pads! )

The Panther XP's work GREAT on the track. I've never had any issues with fade. Note - I also have stainless lines & Motul fluid. The stock WRX brakes work fine on the track - their main issue is heat dissipation, which the 4 pot calipers do NOTHING to correct. Only larger and/or different rotors or additional brake cooling will help. Heat management fixes, in increasing order of cost:

1. Take out your foglights for track days and run some ducting to provide better cooling for the brakes.

2. Get some DBA 5000-series 2 piece front rotors. The 2 piece design will do a better job of keeping heat away from the wheel bearings. I'm planning to get a set of these, once my front rotors are completely trashed.

3. Get a big brake kit, like Stoptech. This is the best solution, but pretty expensive.

For the 6-8 track days I do annually, I find the stock brakes with Panther XP pads and Motul fluid are just fine.

-Steve

Last edited by MNbiker; 06-20-2003 at 10:51 AM.
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Old 06-20-2003, 11:58 AM   #5
sdecker
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Steve:

Where do you do your track days, Brainard, Road America? Can you tell us what the typical braking zones are like?

My Axxis Ultimates, ss lines, & Motul give me lots of pad fade at Road Atlanta, where there are 4 main braking zones: 110-70 mph at turn one, 110-70 mph at turn 6 then a short 80-60 at 7, then (the biggie), 130-60 mph at turn 10A. After 10-15 minutes my pads are begging for mercy.

I know the Ultimates are not track pads and I plan to run XP's on the stock rotors, etc. just like you. I'd just like to hear what the brake zones are at your track so I can make an informed decision. Those puppies aren't cheap.

TIA,

Scott
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Old 06-20-2003, 01:39 PM   #6
wrxsvt
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Thanks for the info guys. I know 4-pots don't inherently help fade much, but I hear they do notably help initial pedal feel, and they give the car slightly more rear bias, so they can't hurt. Not to mention, as I said before I get some interesting tapered pad wear at the track with the stock calipers, which can't be helping anything. And I can basically get them for free, so why not?

At any rate, I think I'll try the Bobcat/XP route, as that's working for Steve and Larry at Carbotech also recommended it to me. As for rotors, I can't quite swallow $500 for DBA 5000s, but I can do $300 for DBA 4000s. I'll give those a try and see how they hold up. And I'll only be swapping front pads too. I have Ultimates on the rear, and by all accounts they should be fine back there. Going to hold off on Stainless lines until next year, if for no other reason than I'd like to see how much the caliper change helps pedal feel first, and then see how much stainless lines improve it from there. And I run ATE Superblue, so fluid isn't an issue.

Scott, I share your pain with Axxis Ultimates on track. Great pad for the street and autox, but even after a few moderate laps they start to go away. Leaps and bounds above the stock pads, but just aren't cut out for race track duty. You ought to give Larry or Matt at Carbotech a call. Great guys that'll talk to you all day about this stuff if you want to. Larry told me today that it's okay to run Ultimates and XPs on the same rotor, but that when you switch you're likley to get some shuddering for the first 10-20 stops while the pad you put on settles in with the other pad's material. Not a real issue though, per Larry, though with the Bobcat/XP combo I guess the transition is basically transparent. BTW, that must be a long straight at road Atlanta to be hitting 130mph! Or your car is modded, or you're a really good driver!
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Old 06-20-2003, 01:54 PM   #7
sdecker
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Quote:
Originally posted by wrxsvt
BTW, that must be a long straight at road Atlanta to be hitting 130mph! Or your car is modded, or you're a really good driver!
It is a long straight. I'm guessing roughly a mile long, maybe a little less. You could go faster if the first third of it wasn't uphill. I have touched 135 quite a few times but that's a perfect run and the brakes are pretty scary at that point.

As to how I can get it there, it's primarily mod related. My driving abilities are sufficient to now be called 'novice' as opposed to 'complete newbie'.

A TXS stage 2 and a good bit of suspension never hurts at the track. You should see the stunned looks on the faces of the BMW and Audi guys...it's like "what the hell was that blue thing that just blitzed by me? A what!?!?! Nooooooooo!!!!!!"



I get a kick out of it every time.
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Old 06-20-2003, 03:49 PM   #8
wrxsvt
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It's even better passing the Porsche guys in a wagon! It's fun to be the underdog .

But seriously, that is some healthy speed; 135 is as fast as I've EVER gone in my WRX, much less on track where 120 is about it for me. Of course I'm stock power-wise, and Heartland Park and Mid-America don't have straights that long. Hopefully this brake stuff works out for us and gives us the confidence to pick up another few mph before braking .
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Old 06-20-2003, 08:18 PM   #9
drees
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For about $30 in parts/shipping you can get the brake ducts that Subaru should have shipped on the WRX in the US.

http://www.scoobymods.com/forums/sho...?threadid=1664

Just got mine from Jamie and the gang at allsubaru.com.

No idea if they actually do much but I figure they can't hurt. They must make the ducts for some reason.

-Dave
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Old 06-20-2003, 09:31 PM   #10
sdecker
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Quote:
Originally posted by drees
For about $30 in parts/shipping you can get the brake ducts that Subaru should have shipped on the WRX in the US.

http://www.scoobymods.com/forums/sho...?threadid=1664

Just got mine from Jamie and the gang at allsubaru.com.

No idea if they actually do much but I figure they can't hurt. They must make the ducts for some reason.

-Dave
You're right, but FWIW, I have them and they don't do much on my early 2002 at least.

Scott
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Old 06-20-2003, 10:43 PM   #11
wrxsvt
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I've got an early 2002 and have the ducts 'factory'-installed as well. Agreed that they don't seem to do much though. Be nice if there was a truly good way to route air to the back of the rotor, but it doesn't seem possible without a LOT of fabrication; more than I'm willing to do anyway .
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Old 06-21-2003, 07:18 AM   #12
MNbiker
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Quote:
Originally posted by sdecker
Steve:

Where do you do your track days, Brainard, Road America? Can you tell us what the typical braking zones are like?

My Axxis Ultimates, ss lines, & Motul give me lots of pad fade at Road Atlanta, where there are 4 main braking zones: 110-70 mph at turn one, 110-70 mph at turn 6 then a short 80-60 at 7, then (the biggie), 130-60 mph at turn 10A. After 10-15 minutes my pads are begging for mercy.

I know the Ultimates are not track pads and I plan to run XP's on the stock rotors, etc. just like you. I'd just like to hear what the brake zones are at your track so I can make an informed decision. Those puppies aren't cheap.

TIA,

Scott
High Speed Tracks: Brainerd, Mid America, Blackhawk Farms
Lower Speed Tracks: Dakota County Tech. Center (~85mph max), Minnesota Hwy Safety Center (~105mph max)

Sounds like Brainerd is comparable to Road Atlanta for speeds, brake zones, etc. I only tried running Ultimates once at Brainerd - it wasn't pretty. After 10 minutes I had literally NO brakes. Note - I've also gotten brake fade with Bobcats, so don't try to use them as a track pad either. The XP's are definitely worth the $ - I've yet to see any fade with the XP's. FWIW - I'd much rather shell out the cash for top-shelf race pads than experience that sick feeling of cooked brakes heading into a high-speed corner! I autox pretty much every weekend, so for me, track days are an occasional way to get more seat time. If I tracked the car more often, I'd be worried about my wheel bearings, as I've gotten my brakes pretty hot at Brainerd.

-Steve

p.s. Don't underestimate the value of good brake fluid, well-bled brakes, and periodic fluid flushes. I use Motul 600, which works wonderfully. However, it needs to be changed out every 6-12 months, to ensure you don't have any water in the system.

Last edited by MNbiker; 06-21-2003 at 07:26 AM.
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Old 06-25-2003, 07:38 AM   #13
sdecker
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Quote:
Originally posted by MNbiker


High Speed Tracks: Brainerd, Mid America, Blackhawk Farms
Lower Speed Tracks: Dakota County Tech. Center (~85mph max), Minnesota Hwy Safety Center (~105mph max)

Sounds like Brainerd is comparable to Road Atlanta for speeds, brake zones, etc. I only tried running Ultimates once at Brainerd - it wasn't pretty. After 10 minutes I had literally NO brakes. Note - I've also gotten brake fade with Bobcats, so don't try to use them as a track pad either. The XP's are definitely worth the $ - I've yet to see any fade with the XP's. FWIW - I'd much rather shell out the cash for top-shelf race pads than experience that sick feeling of cooked brakes heading into a high-speed corner! I autox pretty much every weekend, so for me, track days are an occasional way to get more seat time. If I tracked the car more often, I'd be worried about my wheel bearings, as I've gotten my brakes pretty hot at Brainerd.

-Steve

p.s. Don't underestimate the value of good brake fluid, well-bled brakes, and periodic fluid flushes. I use Motul 600, which works wonderfully. However, it needs to be changed out every 6-12 months, to ensure you don't have any water in the system.
Thanks Steve, that's perfect. I'm going with a new set of Bobcats for the street, XP's for the track, and slotted 2 piece stock-sized rotors.

Anyone interested in some 'slightly used' Ultimates and 'specially dished' factory rotors?

Scott
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Old 06-25-2003, 11:20 AM   #14
wrxsvt
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Well, I've got a set of 4-pots coming, along with a set of Ultimates and a set of Panther Plus. I would have gotten Panther XPs, but they didn't have them in stock in the 4-pot size and I've got a track event in a couple weeks that I'd like to be prepared for. Per Carbotech, the Ultimates and Panther Plus will get along okay on the same rotor; might get some shudder for the first 10-20 stops after switching, but it'll go away after that as the new pad material settles in with the old(I hope!). I think for now I'm just going to get my factory rotors turned and see how they work. They're new as of a couple months ago, so I may as well get some use out of them before dropping big money on DBA 5000s or those TWR 2-piece. Fluid remains ATE Superblue, as I've yet to have any problems in that department.

Also have a set of Falken Azenis coming; hopefully they'll do better than my old RE730s which are now chunked beyond all hope.

Lastly, I'm thinking the H6 rear rotor upgrade might be a good way to go too. I've followed that thread a bit and it seems like there's no dowside to it and it'll help bias the brakes a bit more toward the rear. It'll have to wait for another credit card billing cycle though .

Anyway, I'll report back in a couple weeks.
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