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Thread: What pads/mods will give the brakes a sharper initial bite?

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    Regular Member FazerMonkey's Avatar
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    Default What pads/mods will give the brakes a sharper initial bite?

    I've got a 1.9 Cdti SRI hatch which has been serving me very well for the last two years. The only issue I have (apart from the pretty poor headlights) is the lack of initial 'bite' when the brake pedal is pressed at normal roads speeds. The brakes will do a pretty good job of stopping the car if needed but this requires the peddle to be pressed pretty hard. Even for small braking actions the peddle needs to be pressed harder than I'd like or have had too in other cars. This is an issue the car has always had and isn't something that's just started happening. I've also driven an identical Vectra recently and those brakes were just the same. I've had the brakes bled and fitted a new set of standard pads earlier this year but no improvement so they're still not what I want.

    My wife has a Touran and the initial bite from the brakes is much sharper (but not too sharp) than the Vectra and gives great confidence. The brakes also feel stronger throughout the range. I also drove a Passat estate recently and that also had a nice sharp bite and consistantly strong brakes. In fact every recent car I've owned had sharper and stronger brakes and I'd like the same for the Vectra if it's do-able.

    So any advice on better pads and/or discs or braided lines etc which would give me what I want would be very much appreciated? Btw, I don't drive like a loon, just normal and occasionally spirited driving.

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    VIP-Member Das's Avatar
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    Vehicle : Lada

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    Year : 1954

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    Default

    Some people have noted the Vec suffers from brake pedal creep which makes it feel like the brakes dont work very well. Maybe try Braided hoses but I dont think they give that much difference, had them on 2 cars before and never found they were worth the effort. If you do do them change up to 5.1 fully synthetic brake fluid too and see if that helps too. Think Spoons runs racing fluid in his VXR maybe he could report back if that made a difference too. Trouble with High performance pads is that they generally need some heat in them to work like your looking for. Used to run Mintex M171's years ago, terrible when cold but once hot they were brilliant, instant grip. Im sure someone upgraded to EBC Ultimax Brake pads and they noticed a big difference in stopping power.

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    Regular Member bigdave1701's Avatar
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    Ive just fitted some MTEC drilled and grooved discs and EBC Ultimax pads. So far Ive only fitted the fronts but its made an incredible difference! Since fitting Ive done about 200 miles so the pads are nicely bedded in and its like a completely different car! The bite is instant!

    MTEC DISCS ON EBAY

    ULTIMAX PADS ON EBAY

    hth

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    Regular Member FazerMonkey's Avatar
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    Great, thanks fellas. I'm interested in the MTEC discs and EBC pads but am concerend that as DasArab mentions that uprated pads often need heating up before they'll work well. I don't drive crazy anymore (I've got the kids in the car most of the time now) so need something which will work from cold. How did you find them?

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    Regular Member Danwells72's Avatar
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    Vehicle : Vectra

    Trim : Sri

    Engine : 1.9 cdti 150

    Year : 2004

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    braided brake hoses, drilled and grooved discs and kevlar/metallic pads will help

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    Regular Member bigdave1701's Avatar
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    So far Ive not noticed any difference between them cold or hot, just excellent braking all the time. The Ultimax pads are advertised as 'heavy duty' but not sport or track pads so should work well at normal operational temps.

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    Regular Member FazerMonkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigdave1701 View Post
    So far Ive not noticed any difference between them cold or hot, just excellent braking all the time. The Ultimax pads are advertised as 'heavy duty' but not sport or track pads so should work well at normal operational temps.
    Right, that's it then, I'll get them ordered today together with the discs. Sounds like they're just what I need.

    Two last questions; I guess the standard ABS setup deals fine with the extra bite and power from the brakes? How are they in the snow/ice? Also, do the discs rust like billy-o overnight or do they last a little longer before the brown stuff appears?.......apologies, that was three Q's.....

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    Hi, I fitted ebc turbo groove and ebc green stuff pads, bite is great hot and cold. Yes the discs rust like Billy oh. Paint the hub part first then fit. Hth

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    Regular Member FazerMonkey's Avatar
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    Been looking around the site and noticed mention of the 314mm disc upgrade. Anyone have any knowledge of whether the 314mm conversion or the EBC Ultimax pads/new grooved discs option works best? The EBC pads/discs option coes in at £150-ish but and disc upgrade is £520. That's a big difference in price but is the upgrade that much better?

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    Regular Member Jezzy's Avatar
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    When comparing the Vec's brakes to your wife's Touran, bare in mind that VAG cars are well known for feeling "over-servoed", i.e. a lot of initial bite - too much for some in fact.

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