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Brake upgrades......Options/Opinions

Discussion in 'A4/S4 forum(B5 Chassis)' started by phoenixv6quattro, Nov 25, 2009.

  1. phoenixv6quattro
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    phoenixv6quattro staylowmovefast

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    [Nov 25, 2009]
    I am looking to improve the brakes on my 2.8 quattro. I have read some threads on it and wanted to ask the forums (yours) opinion on some of the options. I have a bit of money to spend, but am not going down the route of big brake conversions because its only a 2.8 and not a heavily modded s4....

    Yesterday I bled the rears but couldn't do the fronts due to completely seized bleeding nipples on the calipers. Nightmare!!! I am going to have to replace these, so reference calipers am I better off getting replacements or upgrading to some b6 items(what ones) or some b5 s4 items? If I upgrade to either s4 b5 or b6 items what will I need to make them bolt on?

    Moving onto discs, what is my best bet? B5 performance items or oe b6?

    Ref pads what do you guys recommend?

    The car already has goodridge braided lines.

    Any comments/suggestions would be appreciated......


    P.S ..... Fixed my suspension. Replaced the top arm bushes, problem solved!
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2009
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  3. Matt82
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    Matt82 Active Member

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    [Nov 25, 2009]
    from my experience of modding cars in the past, if youre staying close to sensible power levels, well maintained oe (or close to oe) stuff is fine.

    get a set of oe or plain brembo discs and whilst youre down GSF get some pagid pads. if you do want more and you do explicitly drive your car hard, get some ebcyellow or ferrodo ds2500 (the usual suspects) and youre done

    absolutely make sure you have a decent brake fluid in there too
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  4. aragorn
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    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    [Nov 25, 2009]
    Your biggest problem is that none of the B6 or S4 parts fit the B5 upright due to different bolt spacing.

    That means you either stay OE for everything, Do the common 312mm upgrade using TT carriers and B6 disks (which retains the original calipers), or change the uprights.

    Our car has 312mm disks on the front. The only reason i fitted them is the carriers were 50quid off ebay, disks were the same price and needed changed anyway and same with the pads.

    If i was doing it again, for a standard power car, i'd seriously consider just leaving the 288's on there and fitting some decent pads like DS2500's or M1144.

    Something a lot of people overlook when upgrading the brakes is this: The brakes arent the limiting factor under NORMAL braking conditions. Your standard disks are capable of locking the wheels (well the ABS would kick in on an A4) even at motorway speeds if they're in good condition, so upgrading the brakes is not going to make the car stop quicker, only providing more grip can do that (ie changing the tyres)

    Where a big brake conversion or some shiney brake pads will come into their own, is fast driving with a lot of braking, where the standard brakes would overheat. That is about the only advantage your getting over the 288's. I should point out though, that old crappy pads and knackered disks can cause the standard brakes to overheat much quicker than they would if in good condition.

    I suspect that fitting some new standard disks front and back, and some decent pads like DS2500's will provide plenty braking for most people in an A4.
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  5. aragorn
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    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    [Nov 25, 2009]
    Oh and on your stuck bleed nipples, the best way to free them off i've found is instead of using a spanner to get a 10/11mm (depending on what size they are) 6 sided deep socket and use that to free them off, before using the spanner to do the actual bleeding.

    Trying to free off stuck nipples with the spanner usually results in a rounded off nipple!

    Worst you'll do is shear the nipple off, but then your still in the same place of needing new calipers anyway!
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  6. Matt82
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    Matt82 Active Member

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    [Nov 25, 2009]
    soak the nipple with gt85 or equivalent, but when it comes to undoing make sure youre using a deep 6 sided socket (like aragon said, usually 11mm) but youre best off shocking it off! definately go down the shock route
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  7. jcb
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    jcb Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Nov 25, 2009]
    I upgraded the whole shebang at vast expense and I am very happy with them.
    However.....
    Unsprung weight is an issue with any big brake kit.
    I definitely notice the difference in handling as a result. you learn to live with it.

    My car with stock brakes and 8" wheels and 235/40 Michelin PS2 was so much more trackable and direct than it is now with 8.5" rims 245/40 GSD3's and 360mm 8pot brakes.

    only problem was that after a spirited B road attack the stock brakes would NOT lock the wheels or even slow them down with any degree of urgency.
    Bloody nearly ran out of road on several occasions in the past.

    not a problem now.
    haven't had to fully push the brake pedal for 12 months.


    bleed nipples can be removed relatively easily when sheared as they have a nice whole in the middle to start with
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  8. Matt82
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    Matt82 Active Member

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    [Nov 25, 2009]
    jcb, what engine do you have in your car?
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  9. jcb
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    jcb Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Nov 25, 2009]
    now - 180brake 1.8t
    brakes are on for the one I have being built at the moment. 2.0l 20v with 2871
    #8
  10. Nitro
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    Nitro Member

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    [Nov 25, 2009]
    I am wanting to upgrade my breaks too, look on demon-tweeks for pad prices, 82 quid for ebc pads. That seams a lot just for front break pads. How much do Audi charge for OE pads?
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  11. Matt82
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    Matt82 Active Member

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    [Nov 25, 2009]
    demon tweeks is always dear. just look on the ebcdirect site

    pagid 288 pads from GSF were less than £40 lass time i bought some
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  12. aragorn
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    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    [Nov 25, 2009]
    Performance parts cost money!

    DS2500's are over £100.

    As jcb says, the stock brakes wont last long on a B-Road blast, but even good pads will transform that.

    It depends where your starting from though. If your cars fitted with plastic tyres and the old brakes are gubbed, you'll see far bigger improvement spending £400 on some GOOD tyres and overhauling the stock brakes, than £400 on some huge rotors and calipers and keeping the ditchfinders.
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  13. jcb
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    jcb Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Nov 25, 2009]
    i run yellows up front which I got a deal on.
    very happy with them.

    Mintex and Pagid are pretty good too.
    wouldn't buy brakes from audi, they don't make them and you are paying for the name
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  14. Matt82
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    Matt82 Active Member

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    [Nov 25, 2009]
    id imagine the audi parts are textar.

    as for gsf pagid pads, there are nothing wrong with those. a good friend of mine regularly gives her 20vt a3 the beans on b road (and we have some great ones round here), her a3 is remapped to over 200bhp blah blah blah and the pagids are fine and the response from cold is fine, so unless you really do kill the car hard, uprated pads would be overkill
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  15. phoenixv6quattro
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    phoenixv6quattro staylowmovefast

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    [Nov 26, 2009]
    Sorry for the late reply to your answers, on nights and only woke up a few hours ago.....attacked the nipples again this morning. Gt85'd them a few days ago and have re-appplied/left to soak but still no joy. I really dont want to snap/shear the nipples off!!! Any reccomendations if I do (aside from new calipers!!)

    I am a bit of a B-road deviant so have decided to go with the following option you guys have recommended.....

    -Stock calipers(just a small case of nipples!!)
    -DS2500 pads (front only)/Standard rear pads
    -312mm conversion with tt carriers/standard rear discs

    Reference the tyres.....Noted. Spent £400 on some Dunlop Sport TT's few weeks back.
    Contradicting my above planned spec, if I choose not to upgrade the discs to 312mm, can anyone recommend some good standard size replacements? Is it worth going for drilled/grooved/both, or just a vented brembo.

    Thanks for the replies gents. You never fail to dissapoint me...
    -
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  16. phoenixv6quattro
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    phoenixv6quattro staylowmovefast

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    [Nov 26, 2009]
    Oh, P.S.....If I were going down the route of s4 b5 calipers/discs, what would I need for the installation?
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  17. aragorn
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    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    [Nov 26, 2009]
    I dont rate fancy disks at all, its just a lump of cast steel at the end of the day. Just go with whatever your factors or ECP/GSF sell.

    S4 brakes would require S4 uprights and driveshafts.

    As for the bleed nipples, how have you been trying to get them off? Have you tried using a 6 sided socket like i mentioned above?
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  18. Matt82
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    Matt82 Active Member

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    [Nov 26, 2009]
    one of my cars in the past came with drilled discs. the discs scored pretty badly, i dont think there was any benefit at all

    plain brembo discs are fine and really take the abuse

    currently my golf is on brembo max discs, i was hoping the grooves would stop the discs from scoring but it doesnt appear to have made a difference and the disc is already showing ridges

    so just stick with brembo plain discs. i think 312mm discs would be very overkill on a 200bhp a4 when you think the s4 gets away with 320mm discs absolutely fine
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  19. aragorn
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    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    [Nov 26, 2009]
    otoh all B7's come with 312's as standard, so clearly someone decided they needed more.

    I guess they might be a little heavier, but they're certainly going to be THAT much heavier...

    It all comes down to heat dissapation, fitting 312mm disks will simply mean you can kick the a**e out of the brakes for longer

    I've never had a branded disk on any car, and never had a problem. I just use QH or whatever the factors sell.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 26, 2009
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  20. phoenixv6quattro
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    phoenixv6quattro staylowmovefast

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    [Nov 27, 2009]
    Looks like the S4 route will be too much of a ballache. 312mm conversion with plain Brembo discs sounds like the route to go down. Ref the nips, I tried again this morning. Used the six sided socket method. Still won't budge. Feels like if I try any harder they will snap off/shear. Seems like a bloody waste replacing the calipers for the sake of two tiny nipples!
    I am trying to source a used PES supercharger (G1 or G2), thus the reason for the 312mm upgrade. I completley agree that 312mm is not neccassary for a 200bhp A4.
    However with the charger on, and combined with my sports cats, miltek system and panel filter the car should see just under 300bhp. I say source because I don't really fancy paying £2500 for a new G2.....

    Once again.......Thanks fellas.
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  21. aragorn
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    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    [Nov 27, 2009]
    Phoenix you've nothing to lose by giving the nipples some full bore, if they shear your in the same position you are now, requiring a pair of calipers. If they come loose, job done.

    I'd give the area a bit of a roasting with a blowtorch and try again, if that doesnt work let it cool and give it another go, if that doesnt work then give them hell.
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  22. Matt82
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    Matt82 Active Member

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    [Nov 27, 2009]
    those nipples, id be looking to get an impact gun on there. i wouldnt put money on just twisting it off being successful, i think its going to need a shock
    #21
  23. phoenixv6quattro
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    phoenixv6quattro staylowmovefast

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    [Nov 28, 2009]
    Keep you posted gents.......
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