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Brake Pads

Roger Reid

Old but effective
Jul 27, 2009
91
5
Caldwell Idaho
The only issue I had my first time replacing the rear pads was I couldn't get the new pads to separate far enough to go over the rotor. Then after researching it, the caliper piston (under the inside pad) has a screwdriver slot that can be screwed in to widen the pucks.
 

wiztecy

Active Member
Apr 29, 2012
2,905
564
Santa Cruz, California, United States
Just a quick update, had to stomp on the brakes on highway 17. A little fawn/deer was partially in the slow lane that I was in... had to really hammer down to ensure he didn't jump in front of me and WOW do those brakes bite now! The fawn didn't move, I honked my horn to scare it but it was in a daze. Was 6pm on Friday with medium traffic. I hope it was alright... one of those things you don't like to see. Any ideas on what works scaring these guys back into the woods?

All I can say is that I'm so happy I can stop now :)

I still don't have any squeals coming from the Carbotech AX6 pads and the brake dust is just the same or even less than the stocks.
 
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strider

Active Member
Oct 20, 2010
3,527
772
NE Oklahoma
So I made the switch today and bled the brakes. It took about 4 hours and 2 beers. But I also had the help of my 20-month old son. So without my helper it would have taken about 2 hours and 4 beers :)

The Elise link wiztecy posted above was a huge help. The only issue I ran into was getting the front pads out. In the Elise procedure they leave the caliper installed and just spread the old pads apart and lift them out. I fought with this for 10 minutes or so before I just pulled the caliper. Turns out there was anti-squeal on the back of the pads that had glued them to the piston. There is no way they're coming out without pulling the caliper so I would edit that part of the procedure. Otherwise all went well. Just got back from bedding them in and they seem great. Although the stock pads felt great after bedding them in since they were nice and warm and shiny. Real test will be in a few days of commuting if they'll bite hard on a sudden stop.
 

strider

Active Member
Oct 20, 2010
3,527
772
NE Oklahoma
@strider I take it you didn't turn your rotors?
No. I've only ever had rotors turned if they were warped. Years of racing motorcycles (and driving cars on the street) have taught me that as long as you bed the new pads in they will transfer pad material to the rotors (that's what bedding does) and will work just fine. That being said this is the first time I've used carbon/ceramic pads so we'll see.

I just pulled the stock pads out, hosed everything down w/ brake cleaner, sprayed anti-squeal on the backs of the new pads, installed them, and bled the caliper. Did that for each wheel starting w/ the RR, then LR, RF, LF (furthest from the brake fluid reservoir to the closest - always been the way I've bled brakes).
 

Doug_G

Lead Moderator
Apr 2, 2010
17,881
3,351
Ottawa, Canada
I think the line about having to clean your rotors if you're changing brake pad compound is bogus. The new pads will remove the old material on their own.
 

wiztecy

Active Member
Apr 29, 2012
2,905
564
Santa Cruz, California, United States
If you loose the bite after a month with the Carbo-Tech's I'd really resurface the rotors. Honestly I never did before either but after having poor braking on the roadster, seeing that the rotor builds up a glaze on it, and also confirming from my trusted speedshop who are in it for the passion not the money tell me that I should always turn the rotors with new pads makes sense to achieve optimum performance of braking. When they re-did my rotors it was called a "cold-cut" which is turned very slow and shallow. This is a minimal shave on the rotors that roughen's them up. If I loose my bite over time I'll most likely do another cold-cut pass on the rotors to get it back.

I've read where a guy lost his bite on the Carbo-techs after a month. I don't know if he resurfaced the rotors or not. But people recommended he resurface to get back the bite due to the glazing.

@strider - are you able to get the front wheels to consistently squeal on hard breaking? That's a key test. If they are your stopping as fast as the braking components are allowing you and they're working at their best.

We can compare braking results after some time and see if there are any deviation in performance. I had 9400 miles on the clock when I put them on.

Sorry I missed that part about the sticky brake quiet that's sprayed on the back of the OE pads. Its like a superglue rubber cement. I was able to get them to 1st break their contact so they'd wiggle and eventually they popped out.

Update:
To support strider it's interesting reading what EBC has to say on whether you should resurface or not your rotors before every brake pad installation. I like their tip on the end if you do resurface them, this tip is the same information/tip my speedshop tech told me and relates to cold-cutting:

Should a Rotor Be Resurfaced? Article | EBC Brakes
 
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Doug_G

Lead Moderator
Apr 2, 2010
17,881
3,351
Ottawa, Canada
Glazing is caused by overheating, which you are not likely to do on the street. Some say also improper bedding procedure can be a factor.

Probably after a month the rotors don't have any of the original compound on them. I'd just pull the pads and sandpaper them, and leave the rotors alone. Just my two cents.
 

frequencydip

Sig 100 - #52
Dec 11, 2011
172
35
Los Angeles
I've had the AX6 pads on for 9 months now and did not resurface the rotors, I do notice the braking performance degrades over time but its mostly due to the rotor not getting cleaned and hot. I just perform the bed in procedure and its all good again. Just a few hard stops from 60 will do it. Just dont take any shortcuts like trying to clean the brakes by dragging them, e.g. pressing on the accelerator and brake at the same time.
 

Doug_G

Lead Moderator
Apr 2, 2010
17,881
3,351
Ottawa, Canada
I just switched to Carbotech AX6 pads. Also had the brake fluid replaced. The old stuff looked like Coca Cola; looks like beer now (the reservoir is translucent so you can see it).

I'm impressed with the results. The difference in braking performance was immediately obvious - night and day. Initial bite has improved immensely. I don't need as much pedal force and there is plenty of stopping power. It's very easy to engage the ABS.

I didn't clean off the rotors or anything; just went through the normal bedding procedure.
 

Doug_G

Lead Moderator
Apr 2, 2010
17,881
3,351
Ottawa, Canada
Update - the Carbotech pads continue to perform well. Definitely like!

I've found there is a tiny amount of noise from the pads, just as you're coming to a complete stop. It's a very tiny squeak and it doesn't bother me in the slightest, but I thought I should report on it. Personally I would put up with 10X that noise given how much better these pads work.

For comparison, I've used Hawk HP on another car, and it's noisier than the AX6. (I've also used Hawk HP+ and that's loud enough to turn heads!)
 

wiztecy

Active Member
Apr 29, 2012
2,905
564
Santa Cruz, California, United States
Awesome Doug.

My update on the Carbotech AX6 - Happy and still working well. I have the same bite as when I installed them. As for the noise, I only had slight squeak coming from them and this only occurred 3 times since I installed them. I also heard a slight scratching sound, nothing major. Since they're metalic,its as if part of the metalic bits on one of the pads were roughed up that caused the noise. I just tapped the brake while I was moving and the noise went away.
 

strider

Active Member
Oct 20, 2010
3,527
772
NE Oklahoma
I'll chime in w/ my thoughts as well - 5 weeks on. I have the Carbotech 1521/Bobcat pads and they are also excellent. No sound and a fraction of the dust as the OE pads. Initial bite after weeks of commuting is excellent - no pucker moments, even today with the beginning of rainy season. I highly recommend them for daily drivers.
 

Alan

Member
Sep 18, 2010
271
20
UK
Hi Guys,

Trying to decide between the Carbontech 1521 and AX6. Not worried about noise levels or track use, just performance on road.

The 1521 says its operating range is from ambient temperature
The AX6 starts from 50F / 10C

As I live in the UK not sunny CA I think it makes sense to go for the 1521. When I went to let the dogs outside this AM there was frost on the windscreen :mad:
Has anyone looked into the difference between the two compounds at lower temperatures?
 

wiztecy

Active Member
Apr 29, 2012
2,905
564
Santa Cruz, California, United States
Like Loyd had mentioned at the beginning of this thread and from my own personal experience is that CarboTech is very knowledgeable about technical details of their brakes and application. I'd contact them to get the best information in terms of your environment and the temps related to the compounds used in the pads and their maximum bite potential at certain temps. You can call or email them directly:

Carbotech Performance Brakes: Contact Us

Sounds like you wouldn't go wrong with either pad from the testimonies. I called and asked if the AX6's would work in low temps where I'm at, it gets down below 4 degrees C / 39 F here in santa cruz, and he said yes it will still work and hook up excellent. I wanted as much stopping performance I could put on and didn't care about dust nor noise, so with it working at lower temps I went with the AX6s.
 

Doug_G

Lead Moderator
Apr 2, 2010
17,881
3,351
Ottawa, Canada
It's not that the pads won't work in the cold, it's that they might not grip quite as much as they do when warm. They're already a lot better than the stock pads, and it doesn't take much to warm them up.
 

Doug_G

Lead Moderator
Apr 2, 2010
17,881
3,351
Ottawa, Canada
After running the Carbotech AX6's for a while, they're still working very well.

One minor nit has cropped up, though. They rattle a bit. They didn't do this at first, so I'm not sure why. Also they tend to rattle simply because the rotor is turning under them - at certain speeds they continuously rattle about 10X a second. Weird.
 

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