• Hello Guest, welcome to the initial stages of our new platform!
    You can find some additional information about where we are in the process of migrating the board and setting up our new software here

    Thank you for being a part of our community!

Budget track car brake fade issues

Nickagriffin

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2017
Location
Va
Hey all, I recently took my turbobrick out for my first track session a few weekends back. Before the event, I put new EBC Yellowstuff pads in the front and Bosch metallic pads in the rear. I also did a full flush with DOT4 fluid.

The brick did really well other than some scary brake fade moments. It seemed like the hotter it got, the squishyer the pedal got. I talked to some brake guys and they all had different ideas. Another factor to keep in mind is that the brake bleeder nipples broke off of BOTH front calipers. I figure I can go at this two ways:

Option 1 (expensive)
- R calipers in the front (potentially also in the rear down the line)
- Race compound pads all around
- Stainless brake lines
- RBF 600 fluid

Option 2 (cheap)
- Replace front calipers with set I have on a parts car
- Race compound pads all around
- Stainless brake lines
- RBF 600 fluid
- Air ducting for cooling ?

I really don't want to go back on the track with a good chance of experiencing fade, especially as I start going faster. Is the OEM stuff really good enough?

More car specs:
- 1992 sedan (factory ABS)
- b230+t around 200hp
- 255s on 17x9s
- Brand new master cylinder
- Around 2700lbs without driver
- Top speed on the straight was around 110mph
 
Last edited:

Nickagriffin

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2017
Location
Va
If there is still old fluid in the calipers, start there. Ducting can?t hurt.
As for the pads, i have no experience with ebc.

I forgot to mention, I talked to a tech at the track and he told me to take the caliper off and bleed it through the line connection. The way I did it was by flipping the caliper over so the line was at the top and I had a friend pump and hold the brakes the normal way. Seems like that should have gotten -most- of the air and old fluid out of the fronts... right?
 

culberro

Ronald Culberbone III
Joined
Feb 10, 2010
Location
Redmond, OR
Stock calipers offer plenty of power for track use, they just can’t handle the heat as you found.
I’ve melted the boots off a set of front calipers on the turbo 242 while at a track day.

Ducting and race pads are your cheapest option, or a well balanced brake kit with appropriate sized aluminum calipers and rotors.

STS offers two wilwood brake kits, BNE has a brembo kit. Both options would be a big step up in brakes. The R kits work, but they require a MC change and result in an unbalanced brake setup.
 

rb92673

racecar
Joined
Jan 17, 2017
Location
San Clemente
Try pads and fluid first.

I run stock Girlings on my 740 endurance racecar. Stock calipers are more than enough to stop the car and out break many other cars. I suspect it is similar for 240s, but others can chime in.

I run custom ordered Raybestos ST-43 race pads. They last 6 or more endurance races, never fade, and don't eat rotors too bad. They are super noisy and squeal a lot. $260 a set for fronts/$160 for rears. There are probably better options for street/track use, but for endurance racing the ST-43 is king IMHO.

Motul 600/660 is great stuff, ATE TYP 200 is also great and less expensive. I have been running it for years and have never had it boil.

I use cheap blank vented rotors. No drilled holes to crack. Slotted are probably fine, but never felt the need to spend more $$. I have seen people with exploded drilled rotors from track use.

I run rubber lines, others feel stainless help.

I had inconsistent braking until I got a Motive power bleeder.

I hear ducting helps, but I have not ducted yet.

At some point I want to move to Wilwood calipers in front, but it is mostly to be able to get off the shelf ST-43 pads at about $100 less and be able to change the pads without disassembling the caliper.

Are you endurance racing?
 

dkrause

New member
Joined
Sep 2, 2012
One problem we encountered when converting a street car to track use was there was contamination baked on to the inside of 30 year the old callipers, which when subjected to the heat of track braking dislodged and contaminated the break fluid, resulting in boiling fluid and brakes going away. A simple solution was to buy a remanufactured caliber (nice and clean) and using a high temp brake fluid such as Red Line RL - 600 ( don't settle for any non racing fluid).
 

Nickagriffin

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2017
Location
Va
All good advice. I think I'll try keeping the stock calipers w/ ducting for now until I have the funds for the nice Willwood/Brembo stuff.

Say for the sake of the argument, I only could afford one set of race pads at a time. Would it be dumb to run race pads in the rear and keep the EBC yellowstuff (street/track) in the front? Or would that cause a dangerous imbalance in braking force?

Are you endurance racing?

No, I'm currently doing HPDE sessions which are typically 35 minutes.

One problem we encountered when converting a street car to track use was there was contamination baked on to the inside of 30 year the old callipers, which when subjected to the heat of track braking dislodged and contaminated the break fluid, resulting in boiling fluid and brakes going away.

That's an interesting point. Would it be worth trying to clean the calipers I have before trying ordering new ones or is it a lost cause?
 

Nickagriffin

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2017
Location
Va
For fronts R calipers only, there is no requirement or need for a MC change. Usually just larger wheels.
Dave B

Dave, I'm sure you've tried every brake setup under the sun. If only doing fronts, would you recommend R brakes or Willwood/brembo? I'd like to stick with 17" wheels
 

rb92673

racecar
Joined
Jan 17, 2017
Location
San Clemente
Say for the sake of the argument, I only could afford one set of race pads at a time. Would it be dumb to run race pads in the rear and keep the EBC yellowstuff (street/track) in the front? Or would that cause a dangerous imbalance in braking force?

I would do the fronts first. You don't want better braking in the rear. Rears last a lot longer than fronts. Are you locking up the rears?

For HPDE there might be more affordable pad options, but I don't have the experience to advise.

Dave, I'm sure you've tried every brake setup under the sun. If only doing fronts, would you recommend R brakes or Willwood/brembo? I'd like to stick with 17" wheels

Aren't R brakes actually Brembos?
 

culberro

Ronald Culberbone III
Joined
Feb 10, 2010
Location
Redmond, OR
For fronts R calipers only, there is no requirement or need for a MC change. Usually just larger wheels.
Dave B

The R calipers shift the bias drastically to the front when using a stock MC, and you get a squishy pedal. They work, but it is not what I would want for a track day car.
 

Nickagriffin

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2017
Location
Va
The R calipers shift the bias drastically to the front when using a stock MC, and you get a squishy pedal. They work, but it is not what I would want for a track day car.

Squishy pedal is the exact opposite of what I'm after. I want a super firm pedal 100% of the time. Easier said than done on a 240...

I would do the fronts first. You don't want better braking in the rear. Rears last a lot longer than fronts. Are you locking up the rears?

Yeah, figured. And no, I haven't really been close to locking up the brakes even on the track.

Wheel fans.

Now THAT would be badass.
 

142 guy

Member
Joined
May 31, 2014
Location
Saskatchewan, Canada
Say for the sake of the argument, I only could afford one set of race pads at a time. Would it be dumb to run race pads in the rear and keep the EBC yellowstuff (street/track) in the front? Or would that cause a dangerous imbalance in braking force?

Full disclosure - I owned a pre ABS 242; but, no experience with the 242 on the track.

First observation, race pads are more about heat tolerance than increasing the coefficient of friction at the disk surface. The limited number of race pads that I have experienced do not work well until they get hot. Because of weight transfer your front brakes do more of the work so they generate more heat and would benefit from the full race pads. However, my recommendation would be do not mix the race with non race pads.

Is this a track car or a track / street car? If this is a track only car then full race pads would be the ticket if you are currently generating enough heat to get pad fade. If it is a track / street car then two sets of pads (one for track use and one for street use) is a better way to go. The cold grip of street / track pads is not as good as straight street pads for stop and go driving and if you are really fast they don't have the hot grip of race pads. Plus, perfectly serviceable street pads are available from RockAuto for really cheap allowing you to fork over extra for the racing pads. If you have not experienced full race pads on the front be sure to test drive and warm them up. If you go into the first corner full metal with cold brake pads you may be exiting the first corner as twisted metal.

Make sure the calipers are completely flushed and rid of all old fluid. Whether you remove and bench clean or use a pressure bleeder is up to you. If you track regularly you are going to be flushing the brake system regularly so getting a pressure bleeder may be a good idea if you don't already have one. Follow recommendations for a high temperature brake fluid.

Brake ducts on the front would be a low cost addition that can't hurt. You said you are running 255 on 17x9 rims. Compared to OEM I am thinking that rim must shield the brake disk more from air flow which would make ducting even more of potential benefit. Are you running any kind of an aftermarket front air dam - those can reduce air flow to the front brakes making dedicated ducts more of a requirement.

If your rubber flex lines are relatively new they are probably not contributing to your brake fade. If you get serious about track use you will probably want to migrate to braided steel because the heat from the rotors will contribute to rubber deterioration.

So flush the hydraulics, add cooling ducts and try race only pads (for the track). If you are still getting brake fade then get out your wallet and start spending.
 
Last edited:

culberro

Ronald Culberbone III
Joined
Feb 10, 2010
Location
Redmond, OR
I'd recommend this kit, in the 310mm/ 12.19in rotor size: https://www.stsmachininginc.com/collections/test-240/products/wilwood-front-240-brake-kits

It has offers slightly more front brake bias (~5% vs the 53(!)% of the R calipers) and a whole lot more tolerance to heat, and it's lighter. The caliper piston area is smaller than stock, so the brake pedal will be more firm than stock. The added braking force comes from the increase in rotor diameter.
You can get pads compounds from DD to GT/Prototype levels of pads, prices range from $85-280 for pads.

If you want a significantly lighter brake setup with stock bias, the "rally" or 300mm/11.75in kit is what you want.

Or just stock calipers with some endurance pads and ducting.
 

shoestring

Active member
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Location
Swampscott, 01907
Given how nasty 240 brake systems are to bleed, I think you need to start with getting calipers with bleed nipples that work. My guess is that you have a bit of air/old fluid/Cookie Monster furr in them and that's your problem. It doesn't take much of that to make them feel crappy. We (successfully) raced a 245 in LeMons for years on a completely stock brake system (except for pads) and we NEVER EVER EVER NEVER had a brake problem or worried about it or pussy-footed it. We did remove the backing plates, but did not run ducting. If you're having a problem, it can be fixed without thinking you have to re-engineer the whole thing.

If the oil fill cap was seized on the valve cover and you couldn't put oil in it, would you swap the motor or just put a valve cover on it? Goofy analogy, but you see where I'm coming from.
 

142 guy

Member
Joined
May 31, 2014
Location
Saskatchewan, Canada
If the oil fill cap was seized on the valve cover and you couldn't put oil in it, would you swap the motor or just put a valve cover on it? Goofy analogy, but you see where I'm coming from.

Post that as a suggestion some time. You might be surprised at how many takers you get looking for an excuse to 'go big'.
 
Top