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Old 08-12-2004, 05:49 PM   #1
2001REDCOBRA
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Brake Upgrage Questions For 2001 Cobra

I'm thinking of upgrading my brakes on my 2001 Cobra. It has the stock ones now. I've been told that Ford does not use the "best" material for their brakes and that they will warp easily. I was looking at Power Slot rotors that are sloted not cross drilled. I've been told that cross drilled rotors will crack over time. I was planning on using Hawk HPS brake pads and using the stock calipers. Is this an worthwhile change or should I go another route? Thanks!
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Old 08-13-2004, 09:41 AM   #2
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I just put new brakes and rotors all round on my cobra this week. Like you, I decided to go with the Pro-Stop slotted rotors instead of the cross drilled because I heard they crack over time if your hard on them. I also had the shop install the Hawks racing carbon fiber (?) pads on all four. I'm still in the break in phase for the rotors, but they look incredible through the rims.
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Old 08-13-2004, 10:00 AM   #3
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The warping is mainly on the GT's rotors not Cobra's (unless you are real careless).

The Cobra brakes are really a nice setup. Their weakest point being brake fade(this means repeated heavy use which heats em up too much and they lose performance until they cool again) during auto-x/open tracking, which is common with a stock setup.

Things that would help.

  1. Better brake pads that resist fade (there is a wide variety out there, be careful, some put out alot of brake dust, some are noisy, some chew up rotors real quick) (also, careful, some pads that are high performance require to be "heated" before they perform as intended. This is not good on the street, because the first few times you hit the brakes, they are horrible and that can get you into an accident if a slam the brakes situation comes up)
  2. Better rotors (slotted)
  3. Stainless Steel brake lines (only available for the front and they keep the pedal from feeling "squishy")
  4. ~ Yearly brake fluid flush with a good grade brake fluid.
  5. brake ducts (you can make homemade ones, or buy a nice expensive carbon fiber setup)

You can always go with different calipers, but its wise to do a matched set made for the car. Otherwise, your brakes will not be proportionate. Your stock calipers are just fine unless you are a seasoned racer who wants heavy braking and has maxed out the potential of the stock setup. Good calipers are not cheap and its money better spent elsewhere.
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Old 08-16-2004, 04:56 PM   #4
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Glad you didn't fall prey to the marketing hype surrounding crossdrilled rotors. They are pure bling-bling for street only cars. Run them hard and they will eventually crack. Run them on a road course and they will crack quickly unless you are a *very* slow novice. I've seen folks split them open bigtime on the first track day.

The slotted rotors will generally wear the pads down somewhat quicker and are not recommended anymore by most pad suppliers with newer compounds. Best bet, find a pad that works well, then ask the manufacturer if slots are recommended. They can help some with reducing the effects of green pad fade or fade due to running pads that aren't intended for the temps you are subjecting them to. They won't keep the pad from losing coefficient of friction at extreme temps, but they do provide a path for gasses to escape. That should reduce the "solid pedal, no brakes" effect from outgassing, most commonly experienced with pads that haven't been bedded properly before hard use.

I'll second what Firme said, get proper pads for the application, keep fresh high-temp fluid in the system, then add cooling ducts if necessary. The Brembo rotors are fine, if you must try to improve on them then a directionally vaned heavy duty two-piece rotor with aluminum hat from Coleman or the like is the way to go.
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Old 08-18-2004, 10:15 AM   #5
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New to the Cobra, but not brakes. I worked hard on getting better braking out of my Lightning staying with stock calipers and rotor. Did the SS brake lines front, middle, and rear. Used the ATC Super Blue Brake fluid, fresh before each event. Carbotec Panter Plus pads (1108s) and new rotors and calipers. Also did some brake ducting for better cooling. By the end for the weekend the pads and rotors were trash. That is why I bought the Cobra. I will up grade the pads and fluid for the March event and see how that works. I will miss running my Lightning, but not the brake problems.


Hey Frank are you going to come and run the Dragon with us in Oct?
You would like the AX that we do at the 411 race track also.
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Old 08-18-2004, 06:53 PM   #6
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Baer Eradispeed rotors are hands down the best (IMHO) rotor for the stock PBR setup, period.

I've run all my track events for the past 3 years on them, have run Hawk HP+, Blues, and Carbotech XP9, and I drive the car to and from the track. Never once an issue with brake fade, never warped a rotor. I do run cooling to it via the 00R kit, and stainless lines. Expensive for the 2 piece, but is offered in a single piece rotor now. However, it is the last rotor you will buy, if you occasionally track the car, or simple do spirited driving a lot. I turned the rotor once, first of this summer to bed the Carbotech pads in properly. Barely took any material off, just enough to get a good flat surface.

I could go on and on, simply put, if you plan on staying with the stock PBR setup, the Eradispeed is the best rotor for it. (Brembo 4-pots will not clear the hat)

{edit} I was please with the HP+ pads, a lot of dust. I'm super pleased with the carbotechs, for the street I'd use the Panthers.



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Old 08-19-2004, 12:50 PM   #7
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The Eradispeed rotor in the photo looks just like the 2-piece upgrade rotor I ordered with my Baer kit. The rotor itself is a Coleman part, the hat might be as well. All Coleman hats and rotors are "custom", there are different rotor blanks to choose from depending on number and type of vanes, wall and overall thickness, diameter, number of holes and pattern, etc.
Kim, right now my plans for October are 2 FATTs, a Seat Time and a NASA weekend at Summit Point. Do you mean Dragon's Ridge? I didn't think that was going to be open for a couple years. I drove my last autox in 1986, I no longer have any desire to spend all day at a parking lot for 6 minutes of low speed driving.

1500+ miles a year on road courses pretty much stisfies my need for speed. Not to mention the 3000+ miles a year spent ontrack in the right seat.

You should come up to Watkins Glen in late September with NASA-NE. It's a Mon-Tues event so the car count is low, plus there are only 4 HPDE classes and no races so you get LOTS of track time. I changed rear pads twice last year!
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Old 08-19-2004, 02:31 PM   #8
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I went with the Powerslot rotors, MM SS brake lines, and Hawk HP+ pads in my recent brake upgrade. I am happy with everything, and the stopping power of the Hawk pads. Sn8kbit is right, LOTS of dust with the HP+ pads. I also get a lot of noise from the pads when finally coming to a stop, or under light braking in parking lots and the like. This is very annoying to me, and I may change them out to the HPS pads soon. Do you get a lot of noise with the HP+ pads Sn8kbit? I coated the heck out of the back of the pads with Disc Brake Quiet stuff (CRC product? little bottle of red goo...) so i dont know what the deal is...
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Old 08-20-2004, 08:33 PM   #9
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Thanks for ALL your input! I just had the rotors turned and they were BOTH were warped! After they were turned they seem fine so far. I may go with the Powerslot rotors with Hawk HPS pads and stainless steel brake lines. This is my first summer with the car;so for now I'm just enjoying it going to cruise nites,etc. Will be going to the Mustang Show in Manchester CT. Sept 12th at Mustang's Unlimited. See you there! Thanx!
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Old 08-21-2004, 04:36 AM   #10
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Frank,

While I'm sure Coleman can do replacement rotors for the eradispeed, they are not manufactured for Baer by Coleman. They were designed in conjunction with Disk Brakes Australia:

http://www.eradispeed.com/index.shtml

This is in no way to detract from Coleman rotors whatsoever. Awesome products from them. The Coleman hat design for SN mustangs allows the use of Brembo calipers, whereas the Baer does not. Coleman replacements would be cheaper than the Baer replacements though. The rotor design is the same between the single piece rotor, and the two piece rotor (vanes and thickness).
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Old 08-21-2004, 09:16 AM   #11
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Hey Frank I knew that you logged a lot of track time, but did not realize how much.

The Tail of the Dragon is a section of hiway 129 between NC and TN. It is 11 miles long and as 318 curves in it. People from across the nation come and drive it.

The AX that will be run on Friday is done on a oval track that can also be used for figure 8 racing. They have come up with a nice AX course that is fun to drive with the banked turns. Not as fast as a road course but faster than a AX in a parking lot. There is more information on SCMC home page.

As for Watkins Glen I hope to drive it some day. This year, however, I will be on my boat doing a 10 cruise from MB to Washington, NC.

I think that my next HPDE is going be in March with this club. I still have to get the roll bar and such together.
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Old 08-23-2004, 06:14 PM   #12
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Sn8kbit, haven't eyeballed a Cobra Eradispeed in person but the Baer 2-pc rotors I got with my kit have the Coleman P/N's on them. I was happy to see Baer used the exact rotor blanks I was planning to use when these were done. I have no idea where Coleman gets their blanks, could be Australia. For those of us who consider rotors to be consumables, it's nice to know that quality replacements are available at volume (circle track) racer prices. I mentioned the Coleman source for those who would rather not pay for the convenience of having someone spec the parts and bolt them together.

Kim, the Dragon sounds similar to the monthly trip I used to make through the mountains on Rt 250 between Stuanton, VA and Grafton, WV. Years later Car and Driver picked it as one of the 10 best driver's roads in America. Except it's a whole lot longer than 11 miles.

BTW, I added more track miles this weekend by becoming an instructor for SVTOA, plus an invite to instruct at 2 more WG events starting next year with another group. I need more vacation!

I've never seen so many Mustangs or so many supercharged vehicles at one track event as I did this weekend. Oh yeah, a Ford employee drove the yellow GT (aka GT40) development mule down for the event and spent both days on track in every single session. It'll probably be a long while before someone other than a Ford employee can say they've been passed by a GT more total times than me!

You mean you're going to skip all 3 NASA events at Summit Point this fall? You'd have a blast in the Cobra. I instructed a novice in a Lightning for one session this weekend, that transmission has got to make it mighty difficult to learn to drive fast on a road course. Roll in the gas exiting the turn, no boost in 3rd gear then !WHAM! instantaneous downshift and full boost. It was twice as bad before I had him lock out the OD, but 2nd topped out too early to leave it there, you can't lock it in 3rd and the column shifter seemed like a distraction. I was amazed that he hadn't spun out in the rain on Saturday. I assume you manually shifted yours?
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Old 08-23-2004, 06:31 PM   #13
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Frank,

That's good to know then, that being the case. 140 each for replacements from Baer is *kinda* steep. This is the only shot I have of them head on, vs the brembo stock rotor:



Is that the same rotor you ended up with? If so, I'd like to have that Coleman part number you have.

Thanks,
Steve
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Old 08-24-2004, 12:07 PM   #14
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Certainly looks the same. I won't be home to look at my rotors until next weekend but the number starts with DV32 I believe. With Coleman you order the blank P/N then spec diameter, thickness, # of mounting holes and diameter of mounting hole pattern. I think the Baers I have are 12 bolt mounting, which seems like a bit of overkill. First thing I noticed is that Baer doesn't safety-wire the bolts.

Baer quoted me $168 for replacements. Mine are 12" diameter.
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Old 08-25-2004, 08:43 AM   #15
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Oh, yeah. Kim, this should bring back memories for you - the Lightning I rode in was completely out of rear brakes by the end of Saturday. It rained all but the 1st and last session (smoke was rolling off the backs by mid-session) and the JC isn't hard on brakes at all. I ran the semi-metallic street pads that came with my Baer kit and they were fine. The PF's go in before my next event.
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