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Discussion Starter #1
I installed the Formula Dynamics big brake kit along with stainless rear lines and the carbon/kevlar pads all around. Having upgraded suspension, tires, etc. I had realized that more stopping power was now needed. Put the kit in about 2 weeks ago, broke in pads, then went to Le Belle Machina for 2 days of track time. Both my son and I were sharing the car so between us we clocked eighteen (18) 20 minute sessions on the track. If you've never been to Pocono raceway, you may not appreciate the abuse the brakes take coming off a high speed banked turn at 130 only to slam on the brakes and get down to 30 as you enter Devil's Elbow.

So how did they do? Beautifully! Session after session without fade right up to the end. Still plenty of pad and no issues. It's hard to say if it added stopping power but the combo of R compound tires and upgraded brakes gave me MUCH more confidence of pushing the car to its limits. (I even got a nice compliment from the factory driver from Aston Martin about how well the car could keep up with their new V12 Vantage, at least in the twisties.)
 

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Thanks for the review and glad to hear that they are paying dividends.

Sounds like a no-brainer for our track enthusiasts on this forum.
 

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Brake Pads

Can we "mere mortals" just get the carbon/kevlar pads, or is it necessary to upgrade the total braking system?

Really an FD question.

I've always wanted - on all cars- the HD pads and low dust brakes - stopping fast is a good thing!! :))

Am I on the right track here ...Jeff ??

thanks

WW
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I can answer for Jeff. The pads are available separately on the site. Since these are the stock calipers, any pad that fits would work. Maybe I should restate that this was not the Brembo/Big Brake kit, but the Big brake kit which gives you larger rotors (355mm) and a remounting bracket for your stock caliper.

IMHO, this kit is really all that anyone but a true track nut would need.
 

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Sprocket - Thanks for the review, glad the system worked well at Bella. I'd wished that I was able to make it out there!

William,

Yes the new Carbon / Kevlar Pads are available from us seperately as well.

We'll likely organize the new brake products into the following:

Pads, SS Lines, Factory Rotors (Available Seperately)

Stage 1 Brake Upgrade:
Carbon / Kevlar Pads, SS Lines, Racing Brake Fluid

Stage 2 Brake Upgrade:
2pc 355mm Rotors, Carbon / Kevlar Pads, SS Lines Racing Brake Fluid

Stage 3 Brake Upgrade:
2pc 355mm Rotors, Carbon / Kevlar Pads, Brembo 6 Piston Calipers

Switching to the Carbon / Kevlar pads helps but will definitely fall short of the performance benefit you'll achieve with the Stage 2 Kit (Above). In other words, adding the SS Lines and performance rotors make a good bit of difference.

Best Regards,
-- Jeff
 

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Yes this is a project that is currently under way both for the Quattroporte and the GranTurismo.

Best Regards,
-- Jeff
 

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Thank you Jeff:

Recently I purchased the FD front Brake upgrade from Jeff for my GS.

As expected they look great especially when installed.

For daily road use they are very responsive, quiet plus the pedal sensitivity is perfect.

Went to the track yesterday and abused the shit out of them. Must say that they performed flawlessly.
 

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I completely agree with the other posts. This is a great upgrade especially since the FD rotors cost about the same as a set of the crappy OEM units.

Watch the pad wear though. I went through a set of pads in 2 track days plus about 1000K miles of aggressive road driving. I did not realize they had worn that fast and ended up with metal on metal!!
 

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Thanks guys for the reviews! I'd also like to mention that we have full race pads front and rear for the Maserati. If you're planning on doing track days, there is a huge difference when switching to these pads. These are being made of the very best material available today. (i.e. the same compounds that are used in Lemans racing!)

The Carbon Kevlar pads are awesome for the street, a great balance. They are easy on rotors and stop well. However, they may be a bit soft for high speed tracks. They will still work well, we've abused them without a problem. However, they will not last as long or brake quite as well as our all out race pads.

Best Regards,
-- Jeff
 

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Jeff-

How do your pads (street & kevlar) compare with the EBC Redstuff pads? (in terms of rotor friendliness, feel & fade resistance)


Also, how do your race pads compare to their yellow stuff pads?
 

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Brian,

I don't like to talk poorly about other brands, but I'm not an advocate of EBC pads for the Maserati. We've tried them, customers have tried them. I feel that they are more of a budget pad and their performance falls short in several ways compared to our pads. Mostly because they are the same compound that is used on many cars with very different characteristics. It's all about sales volume vs knowledge of the car / brand.

FD has been through several pad compounds on the Maserati over the years and I believe that we've got a very good result at this stage of the game. i.e. our pads have improved over time.

Our Carbon / Kevlar pads to me, are perfect for the street enthusiast. They are very rotor friendly, have good pedal feel, excellent stopping power, torque, resistance to fade and from what we've seen are still very, very quiet. Again, it's just the result of making small changes over the years to get them just right.

Our Quiet pads are low dust, long life and very quiet. They perform similar to the factory pad in many ways. This is a very safe choice, if performance isn't your top priority and you're more of a daily driver or cruiser.

Our Race Pads are exactly that: FULL RACE pads made from the best compounds available to Pro Lemans Race Teams. They are not for the street but they stop amazingly well on the track, have no fatigue / fade and wear very well even on tough, high speed tracks. I'm not aware of any product (fitting the Maserati) that will compare to the track performance of these pads.

Hope that helps a bit!

Best Regards,
-- Jeff
 

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Big Brembo kit failed me at Thunderbolt.

I did two days of track driving at NJ Thunderbolt raceway with the Ferrari Club of America at their anual meeting. The car I must say was a gem. It has pretty much all the FD upgrades and I was driving with the Blue Group which is the intermediate level of experience. I was driving the car at the limit (as per my instructor) and I was able to pass and keep up with 360 Challenge race cars and a Ferrari 458! The cherry on the top was passing an F40 and and Enzo (obviously their owners weren't pushing it) Nevertheless the car with the FD upgrades (suspension, DBW, ECM, de Cats, Brembos) does very well at that track and I highly recommend it for Gransport drivers in the area. Everything was looking great until the middle of my 9th 25 minute session in 2 days when I noticed brake fading and it it got to a point were I was overshooting my turn in point so I called it quits. I had to drive home (100 miles) and on the way I noticed that horrible vibration on braking and realized I cooked the brakes! I inspected the rotors and the front right is grooved significantly the left one less so. It was very dissapointing as I got this kit because the stock brakes were pathetic. Is it me or what? Is the car just too heavy for hard track use? I would like feedback as I am evaluating if I should go for a real track car or keep modifying the GS. I really love this car and it can be quite rewarding to push, but I can't just keep replacing rotors after every track event.
Anybody?
 

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That is surprising. Can you provide a bit more detail?

What kind of pads are you using (street or race) and how much milege/ track use prior to the Thunderbolt event? How much pad do you have left now (and if none) was the rotor grooved because the pad wore down to the backing plate?

This same thing happened to me a few months ago and it was because I was using street pads which ended up only lasting for two track days. I neglected to check them and the pads wore dwon to the plate which grooved the rotor.
 

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Flashgordon, The exact same thing that happened to you happened to me! It was my enthusiasm of driving at the track which led me to neglect my brake pads and pay the expensive price!
I was using the Brembo GT pads that came with the kit and I thought that I was good for 3 days of track as per my "Tech inspection" done at the dealer.
That said, the car is really something else!
Learn from your mistakes! If there is one thing you should keep in mind when tracking your cars is you brakes.
Till next time!
 

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Street vs track

...Our Race Pads are exactly that: FULL RACE pads made from the best compounds available to Pro Lemans Race Teams. They are not for the street but they stop amazingly well on the track, have no fatigue / fade and wear very well even on tough, high speed tracks. I'm not aware of any product (fitting the Maserati) that will compare to the track performance of these pads...
-- Jeff
Hi Jeff,

For the ignorant, can you explain why a race pad doesn't work well for street use? Is it just noise, or are there other issues? What is better for mainly street driving with say 2-6 track days a year to use? The kevlar or the race pads?
 

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It was very dissapointing as I got this kit because the stock brakes were pathetic. Is it me or what? Is the car just too heavy for hard track use? I would like feedback as I am evaluating if I should go for a real track car or keep modifying the GS. I really love this car and it can be quite rewarding to push, but I can't just keep replacing rotors after every track event.
Anybody?
OK so at least we got to the bottom of why it happened. I was disappointed too but apparently street pads will only give you a day or two on a car this heavy typically.

As far as your general question about tracking the car is concerned, I got the definitive answer last week when I drove up to the Allen Berg Racing School in Calgary for a Formula 1600 seat fitting. Allen (whom I know well and who knows a few things about race cars since he used to race F1) was a bit curious about the car and and I mentioned that I tracked it a few times.

He was genuinely astounded. His response was: "why would you ruin a beautiful car like that by taking it to a racetrack?". His point was simple - no matter what you do to it, it will always be a compromise because the car was not designed for the track. When I thought about that, I realized I could run open lapping days in a fully prepped and maintained Renault Formula 1600 car for the same price as running my own car when tires, track fees, gas and brake jobs are added up - let alone the odd clutch or major repair.
 

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People have different expectations for their cars - track use being one of the many - but, personally, I'd be interested in only one day at the track in my car, then all other days in one which I wouldn't have to drive home. Because they "can" perform on the track doesn't mean they're track cars.
 

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QP Sport, True Race Pads may squeak, go through rotors, take a period of time to warmup, rust, etc... In other words, comprimises have been made to get the most stopping power possible.

In regards to brake pad wear on the track, it's all a comprimise. The Carbon / Kevlar Street Compound Brake Pads that Flash used with his FD BBK for the 4200 are performance Street Pads that are meant to stop well, be street quiet and preserve the rotor. This means that you'll replace more pads more often then rotors and still get good performance with reasonable dust and low noise, this will work well for the Street.

We do have both Long Life Street Pads and Track Pads available for our FD BBK 14. Either of these would give you more laps at the race track, you only need to change the balance to either a Race Pad which will last longer but go through rotors quicker or go to a long life street pad that may not stop quite as well but will also last longer.

Remember, everythings is a balance. It's give here, take from there.

For CCD the problem was that he didn't have enough material on the pads and went metal to metal. In the same context, we have both Race Pads and Street Pads. When replacing your Street Pads, we've switched you to a new pad compound that will last a bit longer on the Street and then you'll have Race Pads for the track. I think you'll find that if the pads are bed in well... you'll be very happy with the results!

Lastly, track vehicles are best for the track but honestly most vehicles on the track are street vehicles or based on street vehicles. There certainly is nothing wrong with bringing a street vehicle to the track for a bit of fun.

Ultimately, if you become more serious, then you may choose to have a purpose built race car. They are expensive to operate and maintain. Having quite a bit of experience in this area as well... I guarantee that you will not be saving any money, but you may really enjoy the experience!

Best Regards,
-- Jeff
 
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