Brake advice, what direction to go for a somewhat experienced noob.

Hi guys, somewhat experienced noob here. I dropped off the car on Monday for certification but won't be looked at until next Monday. In the meantime i've been perusing around the internet and here and noticed a hyper urgency on brake systems. Now i don't remember a brake issue when i had my first GN back in the 90's. Mind you i was only 20, resources were scarce. Now that i have this new one i realized this brake system looks different from my last one long ago. I currently have a "power master". And, Powermasters are a death trap/suicide mission brake system.

To make a long story short. I'm nervous as hell when i get my car back. Hearing about sudden brake failure at any time. So basically i'm reaching out for advice as to what direction to go in.

I see Kirban has the brake booster kit. I like it in terms of the $$$. It's brand new. But, i was also looking at disc brakes, be it Wilwood, Baer, and OEM Brembo's. These don't come without some hacking and slashing. I've seen good and bad reviews on these systems and even a video with a LAF Baer brake system on Youtube.

I dunno, i may be taking up space with this post. I may have made my decision already. I like the Kirban idea until such time i would consider a disc brake upgrade. But, i like opinions.

thanks in advance
 

Turbo6inKY

Short Guy
The only must-do, in my not so humble opinion, is to get rid of the Powermaster. Pull it off, set it on the shelf, sell it with the car if you move on later.

Then replace it with either a vacuum system or manual. I'm not a fan of hydroboost because it's added complexity and weight. It also is insanely overboosted typically and can make the brakes really touchy and unpleasant to drive. But many on here like theirs. I also had problems with boost from the engine getting past the check valve and into the vacuum booster which left me with no brakes after a blast, so I've settled on manual.

After that, the question is "What are you going to do with the car?" If you're just cruising, the stock hardware is completely adequate. Make sure it's all in good condition and change out the parts store pads for a better quality street performance pad like an EBC Yellowstuff or a Hawk HPS and you'll be quite happy. Some stainless braided flexible lines will improve the pedal feel a bit, but it won't improve stopping distances. That's all in the pads and the tires.

Stepping up to the aftermarket rotor/caliper kits gets very expensive quickly, and almost all of them require cutting something off the car. So make sure you know why you want to do it. Do you like the looks? Do you plan to race it and want to cut weight or increase the heat capacity? Can you afford new wheels and tires, too? Do you want to step up to 17 or 18 inch wheels to make room for blang blang brakes? That's up to you and your wallet.
 
The only must-do, in my not so humble opinion, is to get rid of the Powermaster. Pull it off, set it on the shelf, sell it with the car if you move on later.

Then replace it with either a vacuum system or manual. I'm not a fan of hydroboost because it's added complexity and weight. It also is insanely overboosted typically and can make the brakes really touchy and unpleasant to drive. But many on here like theirs. I also had problems with boost from the engine getting past the check valve and into the vacuum booster which left me with no brakes after a blast, so I've settled on manual.

After that, the question is "What are you going to do with the car?" If you're just cruising, the stock hardware is completely adequate. Make sure it's all in good condition and change out the parts store pads for a better quality street performance pad like an EBC Yellowstuff or a Hawk HPS and you'll be quite happy. Some stainless braided flexible lines will improve the pedal feel a bit, but it won't improve stopping distances. That's all in the pads and the tires.

Stepping up to the aftermarket rotor/caliper kits gets very expensive quickly, and almost all of them require cutting something off the car. So make sure you know why you want to do it. Do you like the looks? Do you plan to race it and want to cut weight or increase the heat capacity? Can you afford new wheels and tires, too? Do you want to step up to 17 or 18 inch wheels to make room for blang blang brakes? That's up to you and your wallet.
Hey thanks for the reply. I appreciate the info and ideology.

I remember having the vacuum booster brake set up on my first car. Car stopped well enough for me, even at the track after an 11.6 pass. Taking in to account what you mentioned and what i foresee the car will be in the future, the vacuum booster setup will fit best for me for a very long time. I will upgrade to larger wheels, but not to fit larger disc brakes yet. This leaves me with the remainder of the brake budget going towards coil overs.

So my original 2nd priority has changed to my 3rd. 1st, get it running right (which i'll find out next week). 2nd, brake system, 3rd, floor pans.
 

dynoman

Well-Known Member
This leaves me with the remainder of the brake budget going towards coil overs.
Are the coil overs for looks or just to lower the car ? Because you can drop it down without coil overs using lowering springs all around and drop spindles in front . That is what I have on mine and wouldn't go any lower up front . The back sits a little higher do to the 28" tall drag radials .

DSCN0511.JPG
 

SCOOBY DOO

I'M NOT A MONSTER, I'M JUST AHEAD OF THE CURVE!!!
Vacuum brakes and replace the 3 flex hoses with SS brake lines to firm up the brake pedal.
 
Are the coil overs for looks or just to lower the car ? Because you can drop it down without coil overs using lowering springs all around and drop spindles in front . That is what I have on mine and wouldn't go any lower up front . The back sits a little higher do to the 28" tall drag radials .

View attachment 352516
Are the coil overs for looks or just to lower the car ? Because you can drop it down without coil overs using lowering springs all around and drop spindles in front . That is what I have on mine and wouldn't go any lower up front . The back sits a little higher do to the 28" tall drag radials .

View attachment 352516
I like the look of a lowered buick but i like the idea of having a much nicer handling car as well. My vision is a lowered GN with larger wheels like 18"s, wide rear 275's?, front 245's. Good handling performance is what i'll be chasing. If that's even achievable. Those front wheels are nicely tucked. May i ask what's your suspension recipe?

BTW, i've always loved the 2-tone. she looks really nice.
 
Vacuum brakes and replace the 3 flex hoses with SS brake lines to firm up the brake pedal.
Hey Scoob, thanks for the reply. That seems to be the consensus. I actually have less anxiety now knowing that there is a kit available for the car. I don't have to go on a search and destroy mission. You'll have to excuse my ignorance, "replace the 3 flex hoses with SS brake lines"? I'm interested in replacing necessary components in the name of safety.

PS. I read the post about the corona test site crickets. Interesting.
 
I think he means braided stainless lines .
On my car 2" drop spindles and Hotchkiss 1" lowering springs in the front . 1" lowering springs in the back , all are 15" wheels . If you're looking for a great handling suspension , get a hold of GNS Performance
Aahh, I see.
Ya I’ll look into GNS. Thanks for all the info and ideas. never thought of a dropped spindle.
 

Rosey1968

Active Member
Here is pat of a post that was lost in the last server crash...

Here is a quick overview of my C5 Corvette front brake install. I just upgraded my wheels to GbodyParts GNX reproductions wheels. I did 18’s up front and 19’s out back. Part of the reason I did this was to go with bigger brakes up front. I already have hydro boost so that part was already done. You can switch to vacuum brakes and acomplish the same thng.

I went with the Classic Performance Products C5 Corvette 13” front brake package. What I like about this package is that it came with new stock height G- body spindles that take a C5 hub. All the part included were new. Package came with spindles, c5 hubs, rotors, calipers/pads and brake lines. It was also only $649 plus shipping. By far the best bang for your buck in my opinion. Installation this was easy and straightforward. Hardest part by far was getting the old spindles lose.

This pic says it all... guess which one is the stock setup :)
IMG_2082.jpg
 

blackazz

Not a Gn
Also look into a leeds brake bandit.
It's a stand alone electric Vacuum pump that's works the booster.like the above said if the check valve allows boost back into the booster it makes your pedal super hard.the bandit makes your pedal feel as good as the power master,No matter what boost level.

Sent from my SM-G930T using Tapatalk
 
Also look into a leeds brake bandit.
It's a stand alone electric Vacuum pump that's works the booster.like the above said if the check valve allows boost back into the booster it makes your pedal super hard.the bandit makes your pedal feel as good as the power master,No matter what boost level.

Sent from my SM-G930T using Tapatalk
Hmm interesting. I’ll have to look into it.
thanks.
 

KC87

Well-Known Member
Am I the only one that doesn't have problems stopping with stock brakes? If you plan on the Cannon Ball Run than sure but multi $1,000 for more braking? Forget the reason but the stainless braided lines are not recommended for the street if someone wants to research the reasons. If you can lockup the brakes now on the street what better will all the fancy stuff do but lower your bank account. Sure, the drilled and slotted rotors look nice but same thing, not recommended for the street.
 

Turbo6inKY

Short Guy
Am I the only one that doesn't have problems stopping with stock brakes? If you plan on the Cannon Ball Run than sure but multi $1,000 for more braking? Forget the reason but the stainless braided lines are not recommended for the street if someone wants to research the reasons. If you can lockup the brakes now on the street what better will all the fancy stuff do but lower your bank account. Sure, the drilled and slotted rotors look nice but same thing, not recommended for the street.

You aren’t.

the stock setup will stop the car from any attainable speed at least once. You do not need upgraded rotors and caliper unless you want the bling or you’re doing crazy stuff like I am.
 

Turbo6inKY

Short Guy
Initially the braided lines did not have DOT approval.

That's a bit of technicality. DOT required a certain crimped end that isn't possible with a stainless braided line. That's why they weren't DOT approved.

That isn't an excuse to buy cheap lines. But when you start modifying cars, you have to understand why things are the way they are and adjust accordingly.
 
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