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Brake Parts Buyer's Guide

Posted in How To: Transmission Drivetrain on March 1, 1998
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Maybe you've added a lift kit and are now stretching the wee out of your stock brake lines, or you've tossed on bigger rubber and need better stoppability. It could be that things are just a little too iffy when you slam pedal to metal, or that you simply need replacement parts. No matter what your stopping needs, this month's buyer's guide offers kits and other related components for pulling out all the stops.

Mark's Replacement Drums
If your Land Cruiser's drum brakes won't adjust properly but you can't afford a disc brake swap, Mark's Off Road sells replacement drums. The flange thickness is almost twice that of stock units, so the drum won't warp when you bolt it down, according to the company. Information: Mark's Off Road, Dept. 4WOR, 437 N. Moss St., Burbank, CA 91502, 818/953-9230 (after 1:00 pm PST).

Baer Expedition System
Baer Racing's new Extreme series for the '97-'98 Ford Expedition includes the first six-piston Alcon caliper, making it the only upgrade system available for the Expedition with enough piston area and fluid volume to meet the OE master cylinder requirements, according to the company. The Extreme series is also available for 10 other applications, and a version for 3/4-ton GM trucks is in the works. Baer also offers an adjustable proportioning valve and Castrol brake fluid. Information: Baer Racing Inc., Dept. 4WOR, 3108 W. Thomas Rd., Ste. 1201, Phoenix, AZ 85017-5306, 602/233-1411.

Downey Caliper Mounting Brackets
All of Downey's brackets are 3/8-inch-thick gold-zinc plated steel. Each is precision CNC-machined for the ultimate in caliper-to-rotor positioning. Each set includes two brackets with laser-cut alignment shims or heavy-wall spacer tubes and the appropriate mounting bolts. The brackets are available for '64-and-newer Land Cruisers and '79-'95 four- and two-wheel-drive mini-pickups. Information: Downey Off Road Mfg., Dept. 4WOR, 10001 S. Pioneer Blvd., Santa Fe Springs, CA 90670, 562/949-9494.

Praise Dyno Brake Shoes And Pads
Praise Dyno Brake offers its Stage I Combo Disc Pads, Brake Shoes & Trick Spring Kit Set with a new-for-'98 part: DOT-approved stainless steel brake hoses. The Stage I kit is a balanced brake system with a semi-kevlar composite for 38 percent higher friction, according to the company. The kit is available for sport/utilities, light trucks, and other 4x4s. Information: Praise Dyno Brake, Dept. 4WOR, 1061 S. Munson Rd., Royse City, TX 75189, 972/636-2722.

Power Stop Upgrades
Power Stop, Autospecialty's line of high-performance rotors and pads, carries a full line of performance upgrades for four-wheel drives. Pictured are cross-drilled rotors for the Ford Explorer and Toyota T-100 and a slotted rotor for the Toyota Land Cruiser. Also shown are the 9-1-1 Extreme Performance and Axxis Metal Master brake pads. Power Stop has rotors and pads for virtually every Chevy, Dodge, Ford, GMC, and Hummer or any other application. Power Stop/Autospecialty, Dept. 4WOR, 800 E. 230th St., Carson, CA 90745, 310/513-2060, e-mail

LC Engineering/Brake Man Toyota Brake Parts
LC Engineering and The Brake Man have teamed up to offer brakes for Toyota 4x4s, 4Runners, and 4x2s. The special compound pads are said to increase stock brake torque by 50 percent, are fade resistant, and are great for use with big off-road tires. Braided steel lines, fittings, and high-performance brake fluid are also available. Information: LC Engineering Inc., Dept. 4WOR, 1880-B Commander Dr., Lake Havasu City, AZ 86403, 520/505-2501.

Stillen Expedition Brake Kit
Stillen's brake division has released its newest Brembo Brake Kit, designed for the '97-'98 Ford Expedition. It's designed as a bolt-in replacement for the OE rotors and calipers. ABS-compatible, it features DOT-spec'd Brembo fixed-mount ,four-piston calipers and two Brembo rotors measuring 328mm by 28mm. The company says braking distance will be reduced by 13 to 16 percent. The kit includes brake pads, stainless steel brake lines, mounting hardware, and instructions. Information: Steve Millen Sportparts Inc., Dept. 4WOR, 3176 Airway, Costa Mesa, CA 92626, 714/540-5566.

Performance Friction Parts
Performance Friction, manufacturer of carbon-metallic racing and high-performance Z-Rated disc brake pads, also produces many other brake components. Among the offerings in the company's '98 Motorsports/ Powersports catalog are calipers, heat shields, and brake fluid. Information: Performance Friction Corp., Dept. 4WOR, 83 Carbon Metallic Hwy., P.O. Box 819, Clover, SC, 29710-0819, 803/222-2141, Website

Jeff's Bronco Brake Parts
Jeff's Bronco Graveyard offers a huge inventory of brake parts for '66-'96 Broncos, including drums, calipers, wheel cylinders, master cylinders, hoses, spring kits, and proportioning valves. Stainless steel hard line kits recently joined the brake-parts lineup. Also available are power brake kits, disc brake kits, and braided stainless steel chassis hoses. Information: Jeff's Bronco Graveyard, Dept. 4WOR, P.O. Box 227, South Lyon, MI 48178, 248/437-5060, Website

Man-A-Fre Brake Pads
For controlled, fade-free braking performance, Man-A-Fre offers a full line of carbon-metallic brake pads for all Land Cruiser models as well as the Lexus SUV. The pads are designed to off-road-racing standards and are a direct replacement for stock pads. Man-A-Fre says you'll notice improved braking feel and control, and shorter stopping distances in on- and off-road driving. The company also carries DOT-approved stainless steel braided brake lines. Information: Man-A-Fre, Dept. 4WOR, 1775 N. Surveyer Ln., Simi Valley, CA 93063, 805/578-8712.

Tom's Bronco Parts Disc Kit
Tom's Bronco Parts offers a complete disc brake conversion kit for '66-'75 Ford Broncos with either the Dana 30 or 44. The easy-to-install parts allow you to retain the factory linkage. Tom's also carries a power brake kit, custom lines, and factory replacement and extended hose kits for long-travel axles. Information: Tom's Bronco Parts, Dept. 4WOR, 2294 Sage Rd., Medford, OR 97501, 541/779-1339, e-mail

Brake Conversion Kits
Off Road Unlimited GM Disc Kit
Off Road Unlimited now offers a complete bolt-on rear disc brake kit for '73-and-later Chevy/GMC 3/4-ton and 1-ton trucks with the Corporate 14-bolt full-floating axle. Off Road Unlimited's kit comes complete with calipers, pads, hardware, a proportioning valve, and braided stainless steel hoses. Optional chromed backing plates are available. The Chevy Disc Kit is designed for the average mechanic-a hydraulic press is the only specialized equipment necessary for installation. Information: Off Road Unlimited, Dept. 4WOR, 8150 E. Raintree Dr., Scottsdale, AZ 85260, 800/947-7007.

Foothill Disc Brake Kits
Foothill 4 Wheel Drive offers front disc brake conversion kits for Jeeps equipped with a Dana 25, 27, 30, or 44 axle. The kit includes bearings, disc rotor assemblies, seals, calipers, supports, and brake hoses. Information: Foothill 4 Wheel Drive Inc., Dept. 4WOR, 1472 Grass Valley Hwy., Auburn, CA 95603, 916/889-2021, Website

Duff Disc Conversion Kit
Now available from James Duff is a front disc brake conversion kit for the Dana 44 in Ford Broncos and F-150s. The kit includes everything you need to convert from drums to discs, including knuckles, caliper mounting brackets, rebuilt calipers, brake pads, hoses, hubs, rotors, brake hose bolts, spindles, and studs. The Duff setup is designed for use only on the early-style tie rod, which goes from wheel to wheel on '66-'75 Broncos and '71-'78 F-150s. The company also offers a power brake conversion for '66-'77 Broncos. Information: James Duff Ent., Dept. 4WOR, 261340 Hwy. 101, Sequim, WA 98382, 360/683-2160.

TSM Brake Conversion Kit
TSM offers rear disc brake conversion kits for most rear-wheel-drive domestic trucks. The conversion components bolt on without welding, and you can use calipers with or without a parking brake. TSM Inc., Dept. 4WOR, 4321 E. Willow Creek Rd., Ste. 1, Castle Rock, CO 80104-9766, 303/688-6882, Website

Rubicon Express Jeep Discs
Rubicon Express has just released rear disc brake conversion kits for most Jeeps. The kits include all the necessary hardware for replacing the stock drum brakes, and you have the option of using a caliper with a cable-controlled parking brake. Optional master cylinders are also available for greater performance improvement. Information: Rubicon Express, Dept. 4WOR, 3315 Monier Cir., Rancho Cordova, CA 95742, 916/858-8575, Website

Other Brake-Related Parts
Dynatrac Axles With Disc Brakes
Dynatrac now offers Jeep, GM, Ford, and Dodge owners an alternative to Corporate rearends: custom-built Dana 60 assemblies that can be equipped with factory drum or disc brakes and will accept all standard five- and six-lug wheels. With drum brakes, the axles are fully compatible with rear ABS. The Dynatrac Dana 60 includes a limited-slip differential, your choice of gear ratio, 35-spline alloy-steel shafts, and heavy-duty axle bearings and retainers. Information: Dynatrac Products Co. Inc., Dept. 4WOR, 7236 Garden Grove Blvd., Westminster, CA 92683, 714/898-5228.

Hydraulic Interlock Anti-Theft System
Hydraulic Interlock Systems now offers the Anti-Theft Vehicle Security System, a mechanical device that allows you to lock your braking system with the turn of a key. The Brakelock System can be installed almost anywhere in your vehicle and is activated by turning the key and depressing the brake pedal. If a thief enters your vehicle and starts the engine, the vehicle won't move when put in gear. Information: Hydraulic Interlock Systems Inc., Dept. 4WOR, P.O. Box 1757, Cape Coral, FL 33910, 941/772-4490, Website

Stewart Lock-Resistant System
Stewart Brake Development has introduced a Lock-Resistant Brake System, or LBS, which helps prevent the rear wheels from locking up in a panic stop by acting as a shock absorber for the rear brakes. LBS installs in the rear brake line and senses and dampens the sharp spike in brake pressure when the brakes are applied suddenly. LBS will not interfere with the factory proportioning valve or ABS. Information: Stewart Brake Development, Dept. 4WOR, P.O. Box 5523, High Point, NC 27262, 800/275-1436, Website

Inline Tube Stainless Steel Cables
Inline Tube manufactures stainless steel brake cables for '41-'92 trucks and most other production vehicles. For corroded or damaged cables, Inline Tube offers replacements made to factory specs in the correct length, with the correct ends, and with the spring wrap identical to the original, according to the company. Bolt-in replacements are available for lifted trucks and custom applications. Information: Inline Tube, Dept. 4WOR, 17540 14 Mile Rd., Fraser, MI 48026, 810/294-4093.

Classic Tube Lines
Classic Tube offers custom and prebent brake, fuel, and transmission lines, and manufactures stainless steel and regular steel lines for all domestic and import vehicles. Lines are available for original or custom vehicles and for restoration or undercarriage detail. Aluminum tubing is also stocked for custom fuel applications. All lines are manufactured on a state-of-the-art computerized tube bender for accuracy and safety. Information: Classic Tube, Dept. 4WOR, 80 Rotech Dr., Lancaster, NY 14086, 800/TUBES-11 or 716/759-1800.

Skyjacker Brake Lines
Whether you've lifted your truck and need longer lines, or want snazzier-looking or more durable ones, Skyjacker has the brake lines for the job. The company says its braided stainless steel lines provide protection from salt, rust, and other elements, and because they have a smaller inner diameter, brake response will increase. Each is Teflon-lined for dependability, and Skyjacker offers them in assorted lengths; in most cases the kit includes tie straps to prevent the lines from getting caught in the suspension's travel. Information: Skyjacker Suspension, Dept. 4WOR, P.O. Box 1678, West Monroe, LA 71294, 318/388-0816.

Earl's Brake Hoses
Earl's Hyperfirm Brake Lines are said to provide firmer pedal feel, reduce or eliminate the pulsation common to ABS, and improve efficiency of the hydraulic brake system by reducing or eliminating expansion when rubber hoses are under pressure. The Hyperfirm kits feature Earl's patented whip dampener on assemblies required to pass the DOT whip test. Information: Earl's Performance Products, Dept. 4WOR, 189 W. Victoria St., Long Beach, CA 90805, 310/609-1602.

Stainless Steel Lines From Explorer Pro Comp
Explorer Pro Comp's stainless steel brake lines are designed to replace stock rubber brake hoses on trucks lifted 4 to 6 inches. The company says the braided lines will not swell under the increased braking pressure demanded by larger tires, thereby delivering quicker, more positive response. Complete front and rear kits are available. Information: Explorer Pro Comp, Dept. 4WOR, 2758 Via Orange Way, Spring Valley, CA 91978, 619/670-5222.

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