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Old 03-09-2017, 04:55 PM   #1
J2Rad
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Default EBC 'YellowStuff' Brake Pad swap, quick question

Hello friends,

I recently procured some hybrid track / street brake pads in preparation for my first HPDE track day come April (will also be using rbf 600). These pads came with a piston insert cushion as opposed to shims. However, they only sent two total inserts, whereas the stock calipers (2017 WRX) are 2 pot, so i would need two more. My question is, are these things required? Would i just use one on each caliper, leaving the other piston alone? Judging from the description of the 'leaflet' (EBC is in the UK), these things are used more as a noise reduction device. Since this would be my first experience swapping brakes, I am just unsure. Any advice would be very helpful. Thanks!

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Old 03-10-2017, 12:13 PM   #2
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Not sure what you mean by " a piston insert cushion " but let me guess ...

This is a pad, black in color, shaped like the brake pad, and is sort of soft, as opposed to hard like a metal brake pad shim, and it's sticky on one side. Yes?

That pad goes between the backside of the brake pad and the caliper piston(s).

You should have one (1) of these cushions for each brake pad.
Do they do much of anything? Not really. You will find over time that the piston will push it's way right through that material where the piston will be in direct contact with the back of the brake pad.

So, use it or not, won't make much difference
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Old 03-10-2017, 02:54 PM   #3
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i've got a pic of that 'cushion', its basically a ring insert that snaps into the end of the caliper piston. I just wasn't sure if it was necessary.
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Old 03-10-2017, 04:17 PM   #4
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Depending on how hard you push you may find the the yellow stuff cannot keep up with the weight and power of your car.

If it's your first time and you're taking it relatively easy they should be ok
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Old 03-10-2017, 06:03 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uofime View Post
Depending on how hard you push you may find the the yellow stuff cannot keep up with the weight and power of your car.

If it's your first time and you're taking it relatively easy they should be ok

Regarding this. I have another thread that is a bit more specific for track day questions
perhaps you could take a look at the last post I made and provide some insight? I would very much appreciate it.

Btw, i've been following the 'Blue Pig' build and I am envious of your progress. Bravo
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Old 03-11-2017, 04:39 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J2Rad View Post
i've got a pic of that 'cushion', its basically a ring insert that snaps into the end of the caliper piston. I just wasn't sure if it was necessary.
I've never seen that type of cushion before. Not like what EBC used to send.
You would want that on both pistons, not just one.
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Old 03-11-2017, 04:40 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uofime View Post
Depending on how hard you push you may find the the yellow stuff cannot keep up with the weight and power of your car.

If it's your first time and you're taking it relatively easy they should be ok
Just remember these pads require more heat to get them going. A couple of taps on the brakes before you hit them hard will warm them up enough
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Old 03-12-2017, 12:44 PM   #8
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Just remember these pads require more heat to get them going. A couple of taps on the brakes before you hit them hard will warm them up enough
Agreed, that is part of what goes on during a "warmup lap", getting fluids, tires and brakes up to operating temp.

As to the ring/disc in the picture, I wonder if they are to limit heat transfer from the pad to the piston?
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Old 03-13-2017, 12:57 PM   #9
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Just remember these pads require more heat to get them going. A couple of taps on the brakes before you hit them hard will warm them up enough
Here's what I was looking at data wise for these pads because I don't have experience with them in particular and I'm thinking of them as being roughly comparable to HP+. Which is where my comment about being able to overheat them in a couple laps if you're really getting after it comes from.

You can look at the stopping distance plot there to see it the the yellows were similar to OE on the first then got hot and were better from there on out. Keep in mind that test is with a Miata, a much lighter car. I would bet they'll be at full force pretty quickly within one lap of use. Basically it's not a big issue and yes the sportmaxx tires seem to appreciate a few turns worth of heat for them to be at their best too.
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Old 03-13-2017, 01:21 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by J2Rad View Post
Regarding this. I have another thread that is a bit more specific for track day questions
perhaps you could take a look at the last post I made and provide some insight? I would very much appreciate it.

Btw, i've been following the 'Blue Pig' build and I am envious of your progress. Bravo
I read through the other link and it looks like you're well on your way!

Make sure your helmet fits well.
A torque wrench is nice to have to check lugs between runs.
tire pressure gauge is good to have too. 40psi is a good place to start, check between runs, they'll go up with all the heat the front more than the rear. I try to keep them around 40psi (you'll have to refill once everything cools down on your way home)
Its nice to have an AP or similar to monitor your coolant temps, your dash gauge is useless, it won't say anything until you're already overheating. pay attention at 220, give it a break if it goes over 225.
Watch the oil temp gauge, pay attention at 250 cool down if you reach 260.
Think about not running subaru GF5 oil it has a bad tendancy to shear down at higher temperatures, a euro 5-30 is plenty for you.

As mentioned watch the caliper bolts, seems silly to use a torque wrench for 20ft-lbs, but those bolts are pretty important and they see lots of vibration. I recommend not counting on gutten-tight as a torque spec...

Don't worry to much, you're gonna have a blast. The first day is as more about learning etiquette and getting to know your car than pushing it.

Pay attention to the class session. learn the flags, learn where the flaggers will be and pay attention to them when you're on track, if someone oils down the track ahead of you this is the only way you'll know before sliding through it at full bore. Listen to your instructor to help learn brake and turn in points. They're pretty much always further down track than you think! You can watch videos, but ultimately you've gotta get out and experience it before you can understand (at least I do).

Bring water and snacks, don't show up hungover (that's miserable). If you're prone to motion sickness bring non drowsy dramamine
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Old 03-13-2017, 11:09 PM   #11
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Default EBC 'YellowStuff' Brake Pad swap, quick question

I've read through this and your other thread as well. I've done about 10 HPDE weekends with my 2015 wrx, and you're going to have a blast. The car is going to impress you beyond what you can imagine. I went through a brand new set of stock pads my first time out, so good thing you bought the yellows. They are a good pad for your first few weekends. I started to run into issues with the more aggressive pads that I put on because the wrx has zero brake cooling. I bought the Boomba Racing brake cooling deflectors, and you may want to consider those if you decide this is something you want to continue to do. My calipers now need a full rebuild before this season, but you'll cross that bridge when you get there.

Also, I found that higher tire pressures help to greatly reduce chunking in the outside shoulder, something I had a big problem with, but I was also over driving the car by that point and my lap times started to drop when I backed off just a little bit.

If you take the time to learn how to drive it properly, the WRX will run with Boxters and E46 M3's all day, just be patient. You'll be surprised by the kinds of cars that are forced to give you a point by.
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Old 03-26-2017, 04:26 AM   #12
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Default Installed, and so far so good.

Hello all,


I finally had a dry day to work on the car and install the new pads. This was sorta my first 'modification' and really the first time doing more to a car than changing the oil. I feel like this is the first time that I was truly excited to take something apart, to do the work myself, to learn as much as I can about my car. It might sound cheesy, but this car has sparked that intangible something that any car enthusiast instantly recognizes. On some level, I feel like I get it now.

I'm providing a brief write up outlining the process i took to ensure everything was neat and tidy. Please note: I fully realize I went through more trouble and did more work was needed by disassembling the whole caliper, but that was a purposeful decision to get everything clean and to see how it all fit together.


First I jacked up the car so that right side of the car was raised raised and set the car on jacks. I then removed the right side wheels. I did one side at a time so that i could flush the whole system with new high performance brake fluid starting the with wheel furthest from the brake master slave cylinder.

Next, I removed the union bolt and caliper bolt in order to remove the caliper body assembly. Note that these bolts are only tightened to 20 ft-lb of torque (19.9 technically)





I removed the bottom bolt first in order to use the top one as leverage to rotate the assembly off the pads. These bolts do not take much force to loosen, so do not be disconcerted.




As many have noted before, be sure to support, or hang the caliper body assembly to keep the stress off the brake line connections. (I used zip ties).

Next, I removed the caliper support. The next two bolts are fairly tight, and space is limited getting at the top bolt, but it is doable. Note that these bolts are torqued to 59 ft-lbs when reattaching them.





And here is my stock caliper support, covered in filth.



If you are new to working on cars, like me, take lots of pictures of how things were before you started tinkering with it so you know how it all goes back together.



Another reason to take off the whole caliper assembly was to give it a proper coat of paint, primarily for protection and also because it looks cool if done tastefully (ie not bright red). I bought a can of gloss black high temp Rust-oleum which resists temps up to 2000 degrees F.

I used a wire brush and a lot of brake cleaner to clean up the assembly and frog tape to mask off the rubber bits and pistons on the assembly, this made painting go so much easier.




I then reassembed the freshly painted caliper support with the newly cleaned retaining clips and brand new brake pads, resuing the titanium shims (so i didn't even need the 'piston clip' that started this whole thread). Note that the manual calls for spec grease to be applied to the retaining clips and other bits, however, based on other people who did similar work, I decided it wasn't worth it to make the trip to napa at that time, and that i would purchase and apply some if the brakes were too squeaky.



And after a bit of finagling everything is back together. You may have noticed the rotor came off as well, to inspect for runnout (which was fine since the rotor hasn't seen much wear).

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Old 03-26-2017, 04:27 AM   #13
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I then flushed and bled the brake system using some 3 dollar hose from home depot and an old soon-to-be-recycled water bottle.
I then reattached the wheels, tightening to ~90 ft-lb (manual calls out 88.5 ft-lbs).

Here is the final product:

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Old 03-27-2017, 08:47 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by J2Rad View Post
I then flushed and bled the brake system using some 3 dollar hose from home depot and an old soon-to-be-recycled water bottle.
I then reattached the wheels, tightening to ~90 ft-lb (manual calls out 88.5 ft-lbs).

Here is the final product:

Nice job!

Make sure you go and give those pads a good bedding in so you can really see how good they are! They'll probably feel weak and greasy until you do.
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Old 04-08-2017, 02:08 AM   #15
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Greetings internet. I thought I would provide a brief write up on how these pads performed on my first HPDE track day at one of the most technical race tracks in the US, Oregon Raceway Park.

First, let me say that I had the absolute time of my life, and it is an experience I will never forget. Secondly, I've learned some valuable lessons that I will share on my other track day thread. This post, however, will focus on the brake system post track day and hopefully I provide useful advice for any enthusiasts who follow a similar path.

Allow me to start by saying these pads, for the majority of the event, held up nicely. Our Rookie class headed out on track for ~20 min sessions, for four sessions. During each session, the brakes felt very strong. The pads maintained good initial bite, and I did not experience any fading, even though this particular track is extremely technical, with 16 turns each lap. There are 3 straights that allow a good amount of speed that needs to be shed in a hurry to make the following turns, so the track is very brake intensive by it's very nature. However, my inexperience showed itself by the end of an intense open track run. After pulling into the pits after 45 mins of hard driving, I realized I may have damaged my brakes by overheating them. This is my story.

This is what my brake system sounded like after pitting from the open track, and all the way home:


They sounded terrible. And felt terrible, like trying to stop with sand paper. It didn't take me long to see i wasn't too far off the mark.

I am dog tired at this point, but tomorrow is a busy day, and my car needs to be able to drive safely, so...
Time to take it apart and inspect the damage. Good thing i have some decent lights:


Ok, front wheels off. EBC brake pads removed. How do the pistons look? Seals appear to be intact, nothing singed, so that's good.



Now for the damaged bits. I think my EBC pads are shot. Notice how they are no longer yellow either. This is not due to brake dust. The paint has burned away.



Enhance *types furiously


Enhance *types some more


Enhance (ooof, this is not looking good)

Leading edge of the pad:


Yes boys and girls, I effectively managed to burn my hybrid track pads and turn them into ash. At this point, I am literally able to use my thumb and carve away pad material, hence the sandpaper feeling:


Now lets see how all this loose material has fared on the rotors:
Nope, not looking good. It looks like the rings of Saturn on my poor rotors. I can feel the deep trenches and scoring that I'm sure were cause by small bits of padding burning, falling away but caught between the pad and the rotor under heavy braking. You can see how deep these score marks are:


For reference, here is the ruined EBC pad next to the stock pad. The damage is apparent.


I swapped my stock pads back into the assembly and buttoned everything up for the night.
The next day, I took the car to Les Schwab to have them resurface the rotors. It was about 20 bucks each (maybe it was more expensive than other places, but it was close to work and I paid for the convenience). Since i had been running the stock pads on borked rotors, they were looking a little uneven as well, so the tech used a belt sander to gently remove a few thousands of material to allow even wear again. One thing to watch out for as well. Apparently I had gotten the rotors hot enough that they were starting to show signs of hardening. Wow! Luckily those spots were very shallow and were thankfully able to be removed.

So, now the car is fully back to stock equipment. But i've learned an important lesson. If i decide to take my car back to that track, i'll need to be more prepared. I believe if I upgraded the rotors to lightweight slotted performance rotors, swapped in full-on racing pads (knowing that i would just have to put street pads back in at the track at the end of the day), and possibly added some front end ducting for additional cooling, I will be set to push the system without fear of overheating and the damage that ensues.

My hope is that this write up will give insight to the realities of HPDE days, and that those who follow this path will avoid damaging their cars.

Last edited by J2Rad; 04-08-2017 at 10:31 AM.
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Old 04-08-2017, 04:00 PM   #16
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Those pads don't look too terrible at all although they don't look like they will like quite that hard of use.

Crumbling on the edges, ash and paint burning - all pretty normal. Some rotor grooving is also not a problem and you didn't wear that much. How many sessions?

The only real abnormal thing is the shiny surface. They did overheat some and you have some glazing (oxides of metal most likely) on the surface of the pads and likely the rotors. I'm not super familiar w/ the EBC 'track' stuff but they were just overwhelmed some. You certainly have lots of material left and you should be able to clean the 2 surfaces and keep going.

Wear from track use will always look somewhat out of control.

When it's bad the pads wear instantly, crumble and crack and heavily groove the rotors with evidence of pad smear etc.

Clean the rotors, bleed the brakes and consider a better track pad.
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Old 04-08-2017, 06:15 PM   #17
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KNS, Thanks for the reply! I was honestly convinced that those pads were toast. But, if i can hit them with a belt sander and create a fresh even surface, then I think that would be a viable solution. It must have been the glazing then that was affecting my stopping power. I ran four 20 min sessions, with breaks in between, and the brakes felt the same throughout (strong) those session. It wasn't until my last session, which lasted a good 45 min since it was an open track, that i noticed something was off with the feel. And when i pulled into the pits, it sounded like a friggin steam locomotive pulling into the station. Just loud metal squealing that I captured in that short vid. I did bleed the brake lines, with zero air bubbles, so at least the Motul RBF 600 fluid did its job. I'll try to refurbish the pads sometime in the future and will update the thread with the results. Thanks again for the info!
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Old 04-09-2017, 11:39 AM   #18
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KNS, Thanks for the reply! I was honestly convinced that those pads were toast. But, if i can hit them with a belt sander and create a fresh even surface, then I think that would be a viable solution. It must have been the glazing then that was affecting my stopping power. I ran four 20 min sessions, with breaks in between, and the brakes felt the same throughout (strong) those session. It wasn't until my last session, which lasted a good 45 min since it was an open track, that i noticed something was off with the feel. And when i pulled into the pits, it sounded like a friggin steam locomotive pulling into the station. Just loud metal squealing that I captured in that short vid. I did bleed the brake lines, with zero air bubbles, so at least the Motul RBF 600 fluid did its job. I'll try to refurbish the pads sometime in the future and will update the thread with the results. Thanks again for the info!
Clean the pads and rotors and see what you get. Your next set of pads should be stronger.
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Old 04-10-2017, 08:43 AM   #19
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Congrats on your first track day, glad to hear you had a blast!

45min session, no wonder those things got toasty
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Old 04-10-2017, 02:56 PM   #20
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You can get a more aggressive pad and still drive on them to/from the track after without having to swap back to street pads at the track. It's not going to hurt anything.
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