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Pads and Brake Fluid

Old 11-02-06, 02:47 PM
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Pads and Brake Fluid

Any suggestions on brake pads and fluids for a 1st Gen race car? I run ICSCC Pro-7 class and the pads and fluids do not have restrictions.

THanks for your help!
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Old 11-02-06, 03:59 PM
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Everyone has their personal favorite for their own reasons. Many people use Hawk Blues, especially since Hawk's are what Mazdaspeed sells, so racers can get them at a discount. They're probably a good choice to start with.
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Old 11-02-06, 04:08 PM
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as for fluids I reccomend ap600 or gs610 if you really want the best which really isn't that much better and $ is no concern go for castrol srf.
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Old 11-02-06, 07:00 PM
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My personal choice for fluid is the Ford DOT3 fluid. They reformulated it a while ago to be 500 degrees (it had been 550). I can still find it in the stores in the 550 variety, and it's less than 20% of the cost of the cheapest 600 degree racing fluid for only a slightly lower boiling point. Many racers use it with no problems. I've used it on track several times now and have no complaints. Check at auto parts stores some will have it in their house brand, in which case it's probably still the 550 degree stuff, check the label to be sure.
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Old 11-02-06, 08:11 PM
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I've had good luck with Motul.
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Old 11-03-06, 07:00 AM
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The more improtant thing than which brake fluid is to change it regularly, esp. if you are running the Motorcraft/Ford DOT3. For a 1st gen, where you are fairly light and don't carry huge speed, I would say that you don't need to run the more exotic fluids (Motul RB600, the high-end Castol, etc.). Heck, if you flush frequently, I'd give something like Valvoline Synthetic a try - I know people who run it on track cars without a problem. I'm planning on running it in my ITS-wannabe FC, at least to see if it holds up.

Do a search, this has been discussed heavily. You will also find tables with the wet&dry boiling temps of the different fluids, which may be enlightening.

I'll ask my IT-7 buddies tonight. I'll be crewing for them in the 13-hour enduro this weekend at VIR.

Good luck,

-b

Last edited by wrankin; 11-03-06 at 07:03 AM.
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Old 11-03-06, 07:01 AM
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I like hawk blues, I've strayed before and always gone back. Valvoline dot-4 works pretty well for cheap fluid, but I have been using Motul recently and it works too.
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Old 11-03-06, 10:06 AM
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This is actually a very interesting thread. I converted from AP 600 brake fluid to Valvoline Synthetic Fluid about a year ago. I can buy it locally for about $5.00 a bottle, where the AP 600 runs about $45.00 a bottle.

I was always bleeding the brakes with the AP to keep the pedal firm, but since I swapped to the Valvoline, I have no issues at all. The pedal goes through a slight soft point usually about the first practice session, but firms up really well after that with no bleeding.

I have run 3 hour races at Mosport, 90 minute races at Shannonville and many races under 1 hour with no issues. Lest you think that I am a slow ****** (LOL), I run times that would put me mid-pack World Challenge Touring Class at Mosport. I also run various pad materials but am mostly satisfied with Hawk Blues. Now if I could stop my rotors from cracking, but that is another story.

I think it is a great inexpensive fluid and should work very well for a new racer as PIR is similar to Mosport in that you have very long straights followed by severe braking zones, especially Turn 1 when you are not using Festival. I found the greatest difficulties at both tracks is in keeping rotor and pad temps high enough.

Eric Nummelin
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Old 11-03-06, 11:32 AM
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Hawk pads

ATE Super Blue fluid
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Old 11-03-06, 04:44 PM
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I appreciate everyone's comments.

G-Force Engineering sells Carbotech Panther pads and indicate there is less wear/cracking problems with the rotors. Anyone have any experience with these?
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Old 11-03-06, 06:07 PM
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Originally Posted by 82rx7wtbracer
I appreciate everyone's comments.

G-Force Engineering sells Carbotech Panther pads and indicate there is less wear/cracking problems with the rotors. Anyone have any experience with these?
I tried these, they suck. sure they are easy on rotors, but the pads last less then half as long as the blues. When you can get a set of rotors for $60 or a set of carbotech pads for $140, I'll run blues and change my rotors out more often thanks.

If you have good ducts going to your brakes you shouldn't have cracking issues with either pad.

the XP9 sucks torque wise compared with the blue, if you must use carbotechs get the xp10.
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Old 11-04-06, 10:42 PM
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Motul is a great fluid. Although a little more expensive, you can rely on it.
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Old 11-06-06, 02:24 PM
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I use Hawk blue in the front and Hawk black in the rear and ATE super blue.

I did a 12 hour race and the fronts lasted the whole race. If it had been 12.5 hours we would have had to change them.
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Old 11-06-06, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by diabolical1
Hawk pads

ATE Super Blue fluid
+1

This has been a great combo for us. Using the ATE over the Valvoline improved the braking dramatically.
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Old 11-06-06, 06:54 PM
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Originally Posted by rotorette
This has been a great combo for us. Using the ATE over the Valvoline improved the braking dramatically.
How so? Were you boiling your fluid? Also, what car were you running (FB, FC, FD?) and what type of events were you running?

Also, we should definitely point out that good ducting can go a long way towards reducing brake temps. During the 13-hour enduro at VIR this weekend, our IT-7 (first gen RX-7) had brake fluid issues. But this was late in the day (about 8 hours in) and only when we pitted. The car would be sitting in the pits for 4-5 minutes and calipers would heat soak. The first couple laps back out the peddle would be spongy for a couple laps until everything cooled back down. After that we were fine. We were running hawk blues, but I'm not sure what type of fluid.
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Old 11-06-06, 10:40 PM
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I run ATE in auto-x with EBC pads. I also use stainless lines. Good bite, firmer than stock feeling pedal (probably the lines), not an assload of dust, and the fluid comes out looking like new everytime I bleed it. I keep going longer intervals between bleeding, and it keeps coming out looking fresh everytime.
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Old 11-07-06, 07:17 PM
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Originally Posted by wrankin
How so? Were you boiling your fluid? Also, what car were you running (FB, FC, FD?) and what type of events were you running?

Also, we should definitely point out that good ducting can go a long way towards reducing brake temps. During the 13-hour enduro at VIR this weekend, our IT-7 (first gen RX-7) had brake fluid issues. But this was late in the day (about 8 hours in) and only when we pitted. The car would be sitting in the pits for 4-5 minutes and calipers would heat soak. The first couple laps back out the peddle would be spongy for a couple laps until everything cooled back down. After that we were fine. We were running hawk blues, but I'm not sure what type of fluid.

We generally autocross and they felt okay then, but not great. When we really noticed was when running the FB on a lapping day. The pedal was getting really spongy and it wasn't getting any better. Just couldn't stop as fast as the first laps. We don't really have any ducting (that's a winter project). The BMW 540 was outbraking it easily and it weighs 1500 lbs more with stock rotors, axiss ultimates and ATE. We had the Hawk HP+ Pads, Stainless lines and the Valvoline fluid. Once we switched to the ATE and flushed everything out we didn't have the sponginess issues, the pedal had much better feel and was much more responsive which we especially notice on our autocross days.

I'm definately sold on stainless lines and ATE and will put it in all my cars whether I race them or not.
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Old 11-09-06, 02:04 PM
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I had brake fade problems of one type or another until I put in ducting. In my opinion, that's a must have for a 1st gen track car.

With ducting, I have had zero trouble with using Castrol LMA or Valvoline Synpower fluid. Both are cheap and easy to find, although LMA seems to be harder to find in local stores these days. I haven't seen the value in spending more for racing fluid.

I run Hawk Blues up front, and have tried Blues and blacks in the rear. For my suspension setup - 350# springs up front, 175# rear, I get noticeably better braking with blues all around - because I am getting more braking from the rear of the car. This is very car/setup dependent, so I'd recommend starting with blues in back and only trying blacks if you get rear wheel lockup/instability with blues. Blues seem to last longer too.

I still seem to crack a rotor every 3 weekends or so. I just bring at least one spare ready to go with packed bearings and seals in place.

Neil G
IT7
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Old 11-25-06, 03:06 AM
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Hawk Blues change out fluid lots go cheap Dot 3
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Old 11-25-06, 09:23 AM
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Originally Posted by 23Racer
This is actually a very interesting thread. I converted from AP 600 brake fluid to Valvoline Synthetic Fluid about a year ago. I can buy it locally for about $5.00 a bottle, where the AP 600 runs about $45.00 a bottle.

I was always bleeding the brakes with the AP to keep the pedal firm, but since I swapped to the Valvoline, I have no issues at all. The pedal goes through a slight soft point usually about the first practice session, but firms up really well after that with no bleeding.

I have run 3 hour races at Mosport, 90 minute races at Shannonville and many races under 1 hour with no issues. Lest you think that I am a slow ****** (LOL), I run times that would put me mid-pack World Challenge Touring Class at Mosport. I also run various pad materials but am mostly satisfied with Hawk Blues. Now if I could stop my rotors from cracking, but that is another story.

I think it is a great inexpensive fluid and should work very well for a new racer as PIR is similar to Mosport in that you have very long straights followed by severe braking zones, especially Turn 1 when you are not using Festival. I found the greatest difficulties at both tracks is in keeping rotor and pad temps high enough.

Eric Nummelin
Yeah, I recently used the Valvoline at an HPDE at VIR and it held up great, I had no fade issues at all - granted an HPDE is a lot less strenuous than 3 hours at Mosport
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Old 11-25-06, 07:20 PM
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I put some Valvoline Synpower in my car today... I had to get my mom to pump the brakes for me :P (I'm still not totally sure if the rears are *totally* bled but the pedals are firm)

I'm sure it's at least better than the cheap store-brand stuff I had in it.

I ended up using the whole jug...
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