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      05-14-2016, 08:43 PM   #1
RandyJ
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brake setup comparison

my e90 is long over due for new front and back brakes and rotors. is there a comparison with definitive data oem vs aftermarket stock size rotors vs bbks?
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      05-14-2016, 11:32 PM   #2
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It's hard to find hard data.

What myself and others who have run BBKs and also stock brakes with a few mods (track pads, fluid, PFC DD rotors) will tell you the stock system is very effective and most people who go to the track do not need BBKs
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      05-15-2016, 12:06 AM   #3
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thanks for your quick reply. you would figure as popular as the m3 is and with raw data that's as easy to gather like 60 to 0 100 to 0 etc that there would be lots of data out there especially provided by the bbk companies or automotive publications.

I don't track at all but being supercharged it's something I wanted to research
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      05-15-2016, 11:55 AM   #4
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Comparison test of BBK for the E9x M3 - Surprising results!!! http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1061808
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      05-15-2016, 02:47 PM   #5
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good stuff, thanks
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      05-15-2016, 11:54 PM   #6
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Those BBK brakes are nice. I just wish we have great looking blue calipers like the current M's.
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      05-16-2016, 02:08 AM   #7
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stopping distance isn't going to change much if at all with a bbk. any brakes that have the ability to activate abs are going to be about the same in stopping the car. however, stopping or slowing the car over and over and over again consistently is where a bbk comes into play. bbk's are for improving endurance, not necessarily stopping distance.
better quality and wider tires are going to improve a 60-0 or 100-0 time more than brakes if you're just going to measure one stopping distance (not repeated efforts that fade the brakes).

i remember seeing a picture comparing the m3's stopping distance to various super cars and they were all within a few feet of each other.
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      05-16-2016, 02:23 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RandyJ View Post
my e90 is long over due for new front and back brakes and rotors. is there a comparison with definitive data oem vs aftermarket stock size rotors vs bbks?
As others mentioned, probably very hard (or even non-existent) to find hard data on comparison on your question.

For us to make recommendations to you, firstly you'll have to answer some basic questions.

- How do you drive/intend to drive your M3?
- What qualities in braking do you value most? (stopping power? initial bite? resistant to fading? dusting? etc etc...)
- is cost an issue?
- Do you have any personal preference (aesthetically speaking, or bias towards a brand etc).

Cheers!
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      05-16-2016, 02:26 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RandyJ View Post
my e90 is long over due for new front and back brakes and rotors. is there a comparison with definitive data oem vs aftermarket stock size rotors vs bbks?

Other than the one test linked below, there's not a whole lot else.

If you can get your ABS to engage on dry pavement (on the street), better brakes won't really do anything.
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      05-16-2016, 03:46 PM   #10
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OP what tires are you using right now?
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      05-16-2016, 08:50 PM   #11
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thanks for the replies.
running 285s potenza s04.
cost is a factor, I want strong initial bite, being SC I wanted to be able to stop faster period, however from what I read, the real benefit of the bbks are seen on the track, repeated hard braking.
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      05-16-2016, 10:42 PM   #12
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I've put about 150 miles on my supercharged M3 at the track with stock brakes - no real issues with fade over a 20 minute session and plenty of bite. I do think the feel is becoming slightly squishy but that's likely because of a need to bleed them. SRF or Motul 600 should help solve that for me.

Regardless, I do have a BBK enroute. My goal is to ensure confidence in the brakes for those repeated 130 to 45 mph transitions.
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      05-24-2016, 06:53 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4M View Post
Comparison test of BBK for the E9x M3 - Surprising results!!! http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1061808
so a brembo kit with street pads vs other kits with track pads?
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      05-25-2016, 08:42 AM   #14
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You will never find any definitive data on brake performance. Every manufacturer has their own data, and every customer has their favorite product (usually what they sunk their money into on their car). Every M3 owner has different driving abilities, on a car with a totally different setup, on a different track, running for different lengths of time. That means what works for owner X may have absolutely nothing to do with how that same setup will work for owner Y.

There are many options on the market from which you can choose. Those range from poor quality bling calipers with ridiculously oversized discs, to full-on 24 Hour capable racing systems from the elite manufacturers. People strap OEM calipers from other cars that have the completely wrong piston sizes, effectively destroying brake balance, and do all sorts of other crazy things as well. However, everyone who does so will frame themselves as an expert here on these forums and tell you that their cobbled-together brake system is the greatest thing since sliced bread. That's the unfortunate reality of what you have to sift through for good information.

You need to first define what your goals are with the car, and then research available options that you believe will match those needs. Then you have to consult with experienced suppliers and owners and go with where your research leads you.

Here are some videos that we put together that may help you along the way:

Here's a video on planning for your future brake needs:


This one discusses two-piece discs vs. big brake kits, etc.:


This video talks about what a big brake kit actually is designed to do:


This one examines the differences between a brake system designed for the track vs. a brake system designed for the street (which includes most aftermarket brake systems)


This video gives a glimpse at how a properly designed big brake kit is approached:


Brakes appear very simple at first...a brick squeezes a ring, and voila, your car stops! It's not that simple though. There are a ton of factors involved, and there is a ridiculous amount of information circulating 'out there.'

In terms of a standard OEM discs vs. an aftermarket two-piece disc in the OEM size vs. a disc from a big brake kit, again there are a ton of factors involved. Properly designed two-piece discs are all about lowering temperatures. If you take a front OEM e90 disc, it's stats are as follows:
360x30mm
63mm radial depth
23 lbs.
Dual-cast /2-piece construction
Drill holes face pattern
32 directional vanes

That disc is a decent design, but here are some of it's weaknesses:
  • It's heavy- even though it's technically a 2-piece design, dual-cast is never as lightweight as a true-two-piece with a removable aluminum hat. The reason manufacturers use dual-cast is primarily for cost reduction, but also for corrosion resistance/foul weather performance in bad climates. OEM disc shapes also tend to be heavier because they rely on a tall radial depth to transfer heat into the air via radiation, and do not depend as heavily on an efficient vane design. This is a common trait of carbon ceramic (CCM) discs for example. They usually don't have an efficient vane design due to manufacturing constraints, and therefore the disc is very tall from the ID to OD, as is the pad that is required to run on them.
  • Low vane count- Even though the vanes are directional (a good thing), there aren't that many of them. You'll see the same thing on most aftermarket BBK's and discs...32-48 vanes. A higher vane count provides greater airflow and cooling, while also increasing the stability of the disc face under high heat conditions (which helps even out pad contact and reduces uneven pad deposits and judder)
  • Prone to cracking- Drilled holes are prone to cracking, regardless of whether the holes were drilled into the disc or cast into it. Drill holes create stress-risers on the disc face, and always crack near those drill holes. They're fine on the street, but they will crack prematurely at track temps. Various types of slot designs are superior for heavy track use.
Due to the limitations above, the disc has to be fairly large to provide an adequate heat sink for heavy use. It is a rather inefficient piece of equipment, designed for low cost production. You can think of the above as "the brute force" method of brake design. When you need more heat capacity, you make everything larger and more massive.

A proper aftermarket solution is all about efficiency. The goal is to squeeze the most heat capacity and cooling capability into the smallest, lightest package possible. I'll use one of discs out of our smaller front brake kit as an example to contrast against the above. Our CP5060/355mm front brake kit has proven to be a great solution for a lot of e90 M3 owners (see feedback in this thread). Yost Autosport ran this kit in the 25 Hours of Thunderhill, and the discs were still in great shape after the race. How is that possible? Efficiency.

Even though our disc is 355x32mm, it is far more efficient and effective than the OEM 370x30mm:
355x32mm
54 mm radial depth
17.6 lbs.
2-piece construction aluminum hat
J Hook Slot face pattern
72 directional vanes
  • Ultra-lightweight- Several pounds lighter than the OEM disc means a nice unsprung weight reduction. The disc is easier to both accelerate and decelerate. Our 355mm front kit overall saves 21 lbs. of unsprung weight off the nose of the e92, which is pretty much impossible to get in any other manner. The shorter radial depth (54mm vs. 63mm) shaves mass from the disc, since ours doesn't rely on radiation as heavily to cool properly...it doesn't need to because it has far more vanes with higher airflow...
  • High vane count- Over twice as many vanes as the OEM discs means far more airflow and disc face stability. They run cooler, benefit more from brake ducts, and the disc face is more stable at track temps...less distortion, fewer uneven pad deposits, less cracking due to cold spots
  • J Hook slot pattern- Effectively spreads heat around the disc face in an even manner. Less prone to cracking at track temps, less noise/chatter. Less chance of uneven pad deposits and cold spots.

If you move up to our larger front 372mm brake kits, you get all of the efficiency benefits as described above, but now you also have even more thermal mass in the incredibly efficient 372x34mm, 84 vane disc.

What you'll see with a lot of brake kits out there, is that they compensate for poor design through size. As with the OEM discs described above, they cram the largest discs they can fit inside the wheel. Rather than using elegant technology to solve problems, they use brute force. The penalty is inefficiency, heavy weight, lack of wheel and tire choices, poor life expectancy out of the consumables (pads and discs), etc. That is the antithesis of what we do.

Hopefully that all makes sense. There are many, many different grades of brake solutions available. Some of them are good, others are not so good...some are just plain worthless for anything other than filling up the wheels and adding unsprung weight. What you're going to find is that the best systems are a substantial investment, but they are worth it over the long-haul. You can do cheap and quick, but when you're done you'll have a pile of worthless scrap. It's more effective to take a hard look at what you plan to do with your car over the next few years, and invest in the proper solution to handle your intended usage.

You can see customer reviews and feedback on our blog that reinforces what I've written above. Many of our customers come to us a bit skeptical, but quickly become believers after they get out there, hammer on our brakes, and find out how much nicer of a day they can have at the track.

If you need any guidance on what is right for you and your car, you can always contact myself or one of our staff for assistance. Thanks, and good luck on your search.
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      05-28-2016, 08:37 AM   #15
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What roastbeef said (tried quite buck phone app as always on the fritz). BBK is about endurance of your brakes for track days. Pointless IMO if you are just street / canyon driving.

The other option if you track but don't have 5k+ to drop on BBK, do front BBK, with stock rear rotors, but use same pads all around and upgrade rear lines to SS. Only thing to make sure is that braking torque of the Front BBK matches or is close to stock so your balance and electronic nannies work properly.

Just another way to look at it.

Cheers,
e46e92
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      05-29-2016, 05:36 AM   #16
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I put hawk pads, I think motul 600, ss lines. It lasted me 2 track days at homestead raceway in Miami with my active auto weeks supercharged m3 . My stock rotors have a lip on them now and the front pads are dangerously low. I don't want to spend a lot of money. I'm thinking of getting the base stoptech bbk for around $2500. What do you think. My car is an e92 m3.
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      05-29-2016, 06:05 AM   #17
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I installed Brembo GT kit and immediately exhibited the symptoms described in the comparison article - long pedal travel and needing to double pump to get pedal pressure. The kit I got had used calipers but all other parts were brand new. So I thought the calipers had gone bad and needed to be rebuilt.

Turns out, the stock pads supplied by Brembo with the GT kit are utterly worthless. They are soft as a sponge and faded during their first track session (despite being properly bedded in twice). I've since changed the pads to Endless MX72 and the Brembos are working beautifully.

So, yeah I can believe the poor review of the Brembo GT kit if they were using the stock pads.
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      05-29-2016, 02:00 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisg123 View Post
I put hawk pads, I think motul 600, ss lines. It lasted me 2 track days at homestead raceway in Miami with my active auto weeks supercharged m3 . My stock rotors have a lip on them now and the front pads are dangerously low. I don't want to spend a lot of money. I'm thinking of getting the base stoptech bbk for around $2500. What do you think. My car is an e92 m3.

You'll be pleased with it. Just had my first track day with the ST40 kit (slotted) and ZERO fade even after 30-minute sessions. I also run Castrol SRF fluid. I could bring the car from 120 down to 40 repeatedly and never felt nervous. With the black calipers, it looks totally stealth.
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Last edited by dparm; 05-29-2016 at 02:07 PM.
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      05-29-2016, 04:12 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dparm View Post
You'll be pleased with it. Just had my first track day with the ST40 kit (slotted) and ZERO fade even after 30-minute sessions. I also run Castrol SRF fluid. I could bring the car from 120 down to 40 repeatedly and never felt nervous. With the black calipers, it looks totally stealth.
Thx! I appreciate the feedback!
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      05-31-2016, 09:30 AM   #20
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lets all be honest those (me included) that have bbk on street cars is for bling factor.. you never rally need them for the street but they look awesome.
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      06-05-2016, 01:09 PM   #21
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For the street...a BBK is simply for bling and cool looks. There really is no advantages. In fact...more of a PIA since you'll want to clean the calipers and then wheels and other stuff.
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      06-05-2016, 07:33 PM   #22
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Bling factor or otherwise, it's an absolute travesty that a car like the M3 still comes with single pot floating calipers when cars half its price already come with 4-pot Brembos.
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