XR4Ti Archived Tech Articles

    Brake Pad Performance - My limited experience with various high performance street and racing brake pads.

Post Date:    Fri, 04 Jul 2000
Subject:      Re: Big Brake Kit
List:         xr4-hardcore@egroups.com

Terry and others,

> I had a couple of questions about your setups.

Just to cover my setup, I am running stock calipers and rotors, stainless 
steel brake lines.  I'm running Repco Metal Masters now.  More on compound 

> What are the Hawk Blue pads?

That is one of Hawk's road racing compounds.  I think Racer Wholesale sells 
them.  Hawk also sells HPS (High Performance Street?), and Black.  I think 
the Black pads are the most serious of their roadracing compounds.

> Supposedly carbon fiber is better, and Kevlar 
> works well, but eats rotors.

Kevlar eats rotors, eh?  I'm about to try out some Kevlar pads, specifically 
"Red Stuff" racing pads from www.OPMD.com (a sponsor of mc˛racing).  I'll 
keep an eye my rotors and note what happens.

> Any info or advice on pads?  After a couple of
> events, my rotors are certainly looking worked.

I put on Repco Metal Masters in 96.  The rotors were about 6 months old at 
the time.  The pad compound is excellent for the street.  There is a 
noticable change when the temp drops below freezing, but the car never gets 
driven then any more.  I like the pads a lot, and they have enough power to 
scare passengers with my late braking.  I'm currently using this pad on my 
autocrosser.  Still running the same rotors now as then.

Repco Metal Master (on a 1 to 10 scale, 10 being the best)
Initial Bite: 6, better than parts store pads by far
Modulation: 6, good control - until you lock them
Temp Range: 8, okay really cold, great hot
Fade: 9, never faded them, even when braking from 115 to 60
Bang for the Buck: 7, at ~$90, they cost as much as the 1144's but will last 
a long time

I tried out a set of Mintex 1144's from BAT about a year ago.  This is more 
of a racing pad than the Metal Master.  The dust on the wheels proves that 
for sure.  I ran these for a short time on my wife's 88.  Only time I faded 
them was when I was bedding them in.  There was so much smoke coming from the 
wheels I had my hand on the fire extinguisher as I brought the car to a stop. 
 These are probably better as a road racing pad than an autocross pad.  The 
initial bite might be too big for autocross speeds.  I know Roland has used 
these for autox with great success.  I haven't raced on them yet (other than 
a disappointing Carlisle 99 autocross in Connie's 88 XR).

Mintex 1144
Initial Bite: 9, incredible initial bite
Modulation: 7, good range of control 
Temp Range: 7, they function well hot
Fade: 8, they like to hang on to heat, but still work well
Bang for the Buck: 7, at $90, they good work, but wear out too fast

--- added text ---

The first performance brake pad I tried was Rapido's Heavy Duty pads.  Their
stopping ability was on par with the Metal Master pads I moved to next.
However, they were gone in a matter of months.  This could have been a caliper
issue, but it seemed to go away with the Metal Master pads.  Like I said, the
performance was good, they just dusted away quickly.

Rapido HD
Initial Bite: 6, average to good
Modulation: 7, never had too much trouble with lock-up
Temp Range: 8, they liked taking heat
Fade: 7, only faded them once
Bang for the Buck: 4, there are many better brake pads for the money

--- end added text ---

> What did you use for duct scoops?

My plan is to use the driving light holes.  The problem is, my class rules 
(DSP autox) doesn't allow removal of stock lighting for plumbing cooling 
lines.  It's all about class rules.

> There are a couple of holes in the bumper 
> there that I thought I might be able to enlarge 
> and then pick up the ducting on the inside 
> of the bumper.

I know the holes you speak of.  My concern there would be flow into the duct. 
I'd think the hole would have to be enlarged enough to allow the ducting to 
be aimed straight foraward to get flow in.  But what do I know about this.  
It's all uneducated theory about this stuff for me.

> Duct routing:  ... Again, I am thinking that going 
> high and down may avoid ground clearance 
> problems.

I'm thinking the duct is going to have to come in along the control arm just 
to clear the tire.  I don't think you'll have enough room to bring it in 
where the tire needs to be when you turn the steering wheel.  I'll take a 
look myself this weekend.  Maybe I'll mock something up.


Update:	      Thur, 23 Nov 2000

I spent the second half of the 2000 autocross season using EBC "Red Stuff"
brake pads.  These pads are the middle grade pad of the three offered in the
"Stuff" series, Green being the street pad, Red being the weekend warrior pad
with road racing capabilities, and Blue being the hardcore, race-only pad.

I must say that I was impressed with the streetability of the Red pad.  It is
far more sensitive to the cold then you'd like from a street pad.  The first
time you apply the brakes when the temp is in the 40° or colder range, you'll
know that these pads are pretty serious.

Because of the design of the pads to be directed toward road racing, I
expected the initial bite to be somewhat less than typical.  I was surprised
to discover that the initial bite was not perceptibly different from the Metal
Masters I had been using.

One concern I had about the pad was how quickly they'd kill my rotors.  While
I have only put about 350 miles on the pads, there is no noticeable change in
the condition of the rotors.  Take note that 350 miles is about 1/3 the total
distance my racer travels in the year.

Here is my recommendation.  Don't use these pads if you plan on driving with
them year round.  The first stop in winter, when the temp is near zero seems
like it is going to be way too exciting.  If you ever plan on combining
autocross and track schools, and you don't feel like a pad change, then this is
your pad.  They did fine for me throughout the season.

EBC "Red Stuff" available through www.OPMD.com
Initial Bite: 6
Modulation: 7
Temp Range: 8, great for heat, bad for cold
Fade: 9, it would take some work to fade them
Bang for the Buck: 7, great pad

Back to the Tech Articles main page

Published by Chris Anglin.