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Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking to generally improve my 08 Sport GT's braking performance and get rid of the mushy pedal feel. I've done a fair bit of trawling on this site and here's what I'm planning to do:

My stock pads will need replacing in the next few months so I'll be sourcing a set of FD's carbon/kevlar performance street pads. This should improve the braking performance in terms of bite and responsiveness.

To lose the mushy pedal I've already obtained a set of FD's SS brake lines and will definitely fit these.

My main area of doubt is around the front and rear rotors. My existing ones would most probably have a skim left in them, but I'm most likely to source a set of FD's performance replacement rotors. I'll also most likely source a set of OEM rears.

Question is, should I just skim all my rotors and not worry about new ones? Or should I just get new fronts - are the FD fronts going to make that much of a difference? Or should I get new fronts and skim the rears? Or should I go the whole hog? Also factored into the equation is the fact that the FD fronts are quite reasonably priced whereas the rears are more expensive.

I'm thinking that whatever I do it's going to last the life of the car in my ownership. I'm happy to spend up on new rotors, but is it really going to be worthwhile?

Finally, for those of you in-the-know, what's a reasonable time estimate for a shop to do all the work above? Trouble is over here, the shop thinks that they can charge you a fortune because you drive a Maserati - not to mention $150.00 ph rates!

I'm reasonably confident I can do the work myself if need be, having done brakes several times in the past, but I am concerned about special tools and techniques. Does anyone have an opinion as to whether a reasonably competent and methodical back-yarder such as myself could (or should) attempt this job myself?

Cheers

Jon

PS. I will of course be performing the bed in-procedures described elsewhere on this site once the job is done.
 

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You can do everything yourself. The braking system is just like every other higher end car I've seen (in a very general sense.) Just make sure you have brake line wrenches. They have more flat sides to ensure you don't round anything off.

That being said, are you chasing feel or do you have actual brake fade issues? If you do have fade, and are driving on the road, either you are a real racer putting the car through its paces or you need to to work on your technique. I find the brakes quite good and relatively fade free even under stress. On a race track that may not be true, but I'm done with my days of my street cars on track.

If you are really talking about mushy brakes, the only part of what you were talking about that matters is upgrading the brake lines. They may be stretchy. Otherwise maybe your brake booster is not working well?

Stock pads work well enough IMO, or you could source MB/BMW pads that supposedly fit perfectly at very low cost. C/K pads may have more bite, but generally that means they are also more aggressive. If so, check the runout on your rotors and verify the thickness. If either is out of or near out of spec, scrap it.

Honestly, I won't do anything on my car unless I fully understand the benefits of each item. Been around the block too many times at this point, and brakes are one of those places that huge benefits are touted, but rarely do you get much out of it without huge all encompassing changes.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hi Scot,

Thanks for the response. Good tip on the brake line wrenches.

I did actually consider modifying my OP to state that fade is not an issue. It's more of a confidence issue. The brakes do work well, but its the spongy feel is what gets me, especially after driving the wife's BMW, there's a lot of travel before anything really starts happening. I know the previous owner and he reckons the brakes have been spongy since new. They have been bled on a few occasions, but the number of posts on this forum referring to sponginess leads me to believe that it's inherent with the stock flexible lines.

My concern on resurfacing the existing rotors mainly stems from a post from Jeff at FD on the pros and cons of resurfacing (I can't find his post to link it), but in his opinion it's best to have the extra meat provided by unskimmed rotors and they are less likely to squeal.

I take your point on the booster, the car does feel underboosted compared to the BMW, but I actually quite like the better feel that provides.

So in a nutshell I guess it's the feel that I am chasing more than anything else.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
How many miles are on your car? I don't see it mentioned. If your under 50k I would just live with it until you cross into the 50k mark, then, If it was me, id replace all rotors, pads, and lines at the same time with a complete set that works together.

This looks like it would fit the bill

Qp Formula Dynamics / Brembo® Big Brake Kit for<br>**Maserati Quattroporte
Nearly 50,000 Km / 30,000 miles.

There is a distinct lip on my existing rotors.... Probably around a millimetre at least

The big brake kit would be nice, but maybe a bit of overkill for my usage ;)
 

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Nearly 50,000 Km / 30,000 miles.

There is a distinct lip on my existing rotors.... Probably around a millimetre at least

The big brake kit would be nice, but maybe a bit of overkill for my usage ;)
Have you checked your front pads?, are you still on the originals? I would just wait until its time to replace the pads and then go for a more moderate upgrade. I certainly wouldn't skim those rotors and would go for all new components and maybe even a new booster, if you plan to keep this car through the next pad change.
 

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In this case I would do JUST the brake lines and nothing else. Keep in mind, all of the other changes mentioned have other drawbacks or very high costs and low overall tangible benefits to the street driver.

If you want to cut 10% off your braking distance, the only thing you can do is spend tons of cash and upgrade to a ferrari like braking system. Even then there are significant drawbacks. The regular big brake systems are great... on the track. On the street our setup is already big enough, heat and fade just don't affect the drive.

Spend the same 5k+ on driver training or heck, buy a racing kart and REALLY learn to race.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'm still on my original pads, but they will need replacing soon.

Thanks for the advice guys! So on the basis of what I've heard here, what I will do is replace the flexi lines with stainless steel and whack in a new set of FD carbon/kevlar pads.

The existing rotors will stay. What about machining them? If there's no problem with judder, just leave them as they are and bed the new pads in properly?
 

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Check the thickness. If they are under the limit in the service manual, replace. If not and you are not having issues, maybe scuff them a bit and throw in the new pads.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks Scot. Scuff them in place with wet and dry, or should I remove them to do this? I'm assuming you are referring to removing any glaze that exists on the rotors.
 

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If there is any haze, though honestly I've never really bothered and never had any issues on any of my vehicles. New pads are generally rough enough to scuff up the rotors really well especially combined with a liberal blast of brake cleaner (on the rotors only!) to make sure there is no grease or oil from your hands. If you still want to, wet and dry sanding isn't required, just a general roughing up. They don't need to be smooth, in fact they need to be the opposite, but only just so.

The biggest issue is just going to be the lip (make sure the pads clear the lip) and the rotor thickness . If either is over a useful limit, get new rotors.
 

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Typically stock rotors are going to be at the limit at 30K miles. If you have a mm of lip on each side of the rotor, you're already at or below the service life.

Honestly, the Maserati rotors are notorious for squealing after resurfacing but you can give it a shot. It's just a real hassle to tear apart everything again to replace. If you were at 15K miles (1/2 life on average), you would be in much better shape to attempt the resurface.

Our Quiet or Carbon Kevlar pads cost much less than the factory pads so these are going to be a great choice, they are proven to work very well with our rotors or the stock rotors!

SS lines will help a bit with the mushy pedal as well. You'll see a noticable difference with everything installed but obviously you can only improve the stock system so much before you'll need to go to the Big Brake Kit. However, I agree that, in your case, the Big Brake Kit sounds a bit like overkill. I think you'll find that this setup works nicely.

You should be able to do the work yourself if you're comfortable with brake work in general. There is nothing with the Maserati that will cause you any additional grief. Just be sure to find all the bleeders on the calipers and follow the bed in procedures included with the brake pads / rotors when you install them. The most difficult part of the job would be installing / bleeding the SS Lines, it just takes time to get all the air out of the system.

Most mechanics will be able to knock this work out pretty easily as well. They don't have to be Maserati certified techs or anything special to perform the work, just an good, honest workshop that knows brakes.

Best Regards,
 

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Unsolicited Testimonial

I can attest to the FD rotors and pads! I have used their "performance" pads and also have their front rotors. No squeal and I can say that they give excellent braking both on street and on the track! They were cheaper and for sure better than the OEM brakes. I only wish I could afford the big brake kit! (maybe this testemonial will get me a discount :) ) Easy to install as well, even for a novice like me.

I should note I have a Sport GT, and as such the car came stock with the braided lines. As such I can't speak to the added benefits of those relative to the OEM lines other than to say that they should provide better performance over non braided lines for sure.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I should note I have a Sport GT, and as such the car came stock with the braided lines. As such I can't speak to the added benefits of those relative to the OEM lines other than to say that they should provide better performance over non braided lines for sure.
I have a sport GT as well, so it seems like I have braided hoses already! It's a bit hard to tell, but I snapped a pic behind the wheel and it seems like they are braided. So if I do have them fitting the FD SS lines (which I have already, but not installed) isn't going to help my spongy pedal at all? :(
 

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Loud Bad Brakes fixed with FD Complete System...

Hi, I had the worst brakes... squealing so horribly my wife refused to ride in it...soft pedal...and rust on the rotors that looked like hell...my recco is there is no short cut...when you got cancer cut it out...I wanted the security of quiet, strong brakes as the foundation to to my 2006 GT...so I bought FD's Rotors, Front/Rear, Stainless Braided Lines, Quiet Low Dust Pads, and while I was at it 15mm spacers to get a bit more stability...FD recco'ed an installer in Charlotte, GMP Performance...and Jeff actually spent time consulting with them on several issues, they did a great job...also they made sure they were burned in properly which is most important with new rotors according to Jeff...well best thing I ever did...absolutely whisper quiet, and super strong pedal pressure. I also bought new tires, so I can not tell the diff between the spacers effect or the tires...all I know is that it feels incredibly tight and stable in the turns, on Tuscany like landscaped roads here in Western North Carolina were we can drive a bit faster and harder, absent of traffic...and when dong so, I have the confidence that I now have strong footing thanks to FD and Jeff...Cheers, GW
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks for all the feedback guys.

After weighing it all up I've decided to go with new FD performance front rotors and their carbon/kevlar brake pads.

I can source OEM rear rotors over here reasonably cheaply so they will be going in too.

The only issue I am undecided about is the SS brake lines... I have a brand new set from FD. I actually bought them off a forum member, not realising that my 08 Sport GT already had them. Should I bother with fitting them since I have them or is that going to be a waste of time? I guess that changing the lines would be as much work again (and cost) as doing the pads and rotors only.
 

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jonty,first how many miles do you have on your vehical?I've found that these vehicals are very sensitive to showing more free play in the brake pedal as the pads wear than alot of other vehicals.I believe this to be do to the fact that it is a performance vehical and the weight is over 4000 pounds it takes more to stop the vehical.I found that if the pads have 50% or more gone on the pads it's just not going to stop as well and thus requiring alot more pressure to stop the vehical.Also have you had a brake flushed latly?I've also found that when I would flush the system and then gravity bleed each wheel the pedal will improve greatly.It doesn't matter what kind of bleeder you use I've seen it with pressure bleeders and vacula types.Also Maserati does not want you to machine the rotors at all!They want them replaced.I would recommend you stay with oem parts.No matter what kind you will use they just wear out there hard on brakes.The rule of thumb is 2 sets of rears for ever front set.If you have any questions feel free to contact me.Neil 847-924-3550
 

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Jonty,

Most QP's do not come with the SS Lines, it was a rare option for the QP but it was orderable by the dealer in a Sport Package and seems to vary a bit depending on where the car was purchased.

However, if you already have SS Brake Lines on your QP, there really is no need to replace them. Just be sure to have your tech thoroughly bleed the system with quality performance brake fluid.

You can bleed them at most perfomance shops and get pretty good results. Technically a shop with the factory SD3 Tool or Leonardo is capable of getting you the best results since they connect the computer and cycle the ABS pump during the bleeding process.

While I agree with Maserati Tech in general that you do go through rears faster than fronts, the QP seems to be biased more to the rear than you would think and many owners go through them pretty evenly. This is going to depend a bit on your driving style as well.

I also agree that I don't believe that any of the factory dealers are recommending to turn (or resurface) the rotors since it's difficult to avoid brake squeal after doing so.

Good luck and as always, let us know if we can help!

Best Regards
 
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