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Discussion Starter #1
I am considering purchasing the Stainless Steel Brake’s two-piston calipers. Based on some of the write ups (and the price of a larger rotor set-up), it's starting to sound like a cost effective upgrade. Before I fork over the cash, I was wondering if anyone has any experience with this product.

 

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I have a set of those calipers/pads. The braking improvements are good- they provide a more even clamping force. It also reduces unsprung weight. The improvements are not drastic- atleast for normal street duty. I thought they were a good buy- I would recommend them more for the overall performance such as quietness, low dust, good braking, and the pads have lasted me about 2000 miles and look like new. Install was a cinch too! I run them with 11" TRW rotors.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
I appreciate the response. I live in one of the fastest growing areas in the US. In fact, the population is increasing faster than the growth of the infrastructure. In other words, the roads are getting really crowded. And, sadly, a lot of the people on these crowded roads make poor decisions. I have had a few near misses in my pride and joy due to the negligence or inattentiveness of others. When you are forced to lock the brakes and see all that hard work come within inches of being destroyed, it gets your attention.

My car has the factory power disc/drum configuration. This may have been an outstanding set-up in 1970 but it pales in comparison to modern cars I have driven. The car requires noticeably more pedal effort and stopping distance than say a much newer Crown Vic, Mustang, Camaro, or etc. In a panic stop, the rear brakes will lock before the front brakes (which I interpret as meaning I need more braking in the front). Several magazine articles are claiming that the SSB dual piston calipers reduced stopping distance by a full car length in 60-0 test. Scoggins-Dickey has these calipers on sale for $355.xx right now. Most of the larger rotor upgrades are in the $1000.00 range. I am a 'form follows function' guy. I have no desire to invest in brake parts because they are "purdy". I want to see a noticeable improvement in braking. I want to invest in something that can make the difference in the safety of my passengers, myself, and my investment. If these calipers will not make a "drastic" difference, maybe I should hold out for the big brake upgrade.
 

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tpinovaII said:
I appreciate the response. I live in one of the fastest growing areas in the US. In fact, the population is increasing faster than the growth of the infrastructure. In other words, the roads are getting really crowded. And, sadly, a lot of the people on these crowded roads make poor decisions. I have had a few near misses in my pride and joy due to the negligence or inattentiveness of others. When you are forced to lock the brakes and see all that hard work come within inches of being destroyed, it gets your attention.

My car has the factory power disc/drum configuration. This may have been an outstanding set-up in 1970 but it pales in comparison to modern cars I have driven. The car requires noticeably more pedal effort and stopping distance than say a much newer Crown Vic, Mustang, Camaro, or etc. In a panic stop, the rear brakes will lock before the front brakes (which I interpret as meaning I need more braking in the front). Several magazine articles are claiming that the SSB dual piston calipers reduced stopping distance by a full car length in 60-0 test. Scoggins-Dickey has these calipers on sale for $355.xx right now. Most of the larger rotor upgrades are in the $1000.00 range. I am a 'form follows function' guy. I have no desire to invest in brake parts because they are "purdy". I want to see a noticeable improvement in braking. I want to invest in something that can make the difference in the safety of my passengers, myself, and my investment. If these calipers will not make a "drastic" difference, maybe I should hold out for the big brake upgrade.
1. The rear brakes locking before the front indicates poor proportioning force between the front and rear brakes. This would be my #1 fix- in panic braking if the rear locks up you may find yourself anywhere but going straight.

2. You say your car requires a noticable increase in pedal effort over modern cars- are you running a power brake booster? If not, I would highly recommend one because of your complaint. If you have one already, look into purchasing a master cylinder with smaller primary/secondary piston diameters- this will also decrease pedal effort.

3. To me, 1 car length from 60-0 can save you in an emergency siituation, but its not a drastic difference. I would say the magazine articles are accurate as far as the increase in braking performance.

4. Bolting on a set of large racing style brakes may not give you the results you are looking for. You must "tune" your mismatched setup using the correct m/c, and proportioning and/or combo valve. It sounds like your current setup isnt "tuned" properly, so I would hold off on any changes until your current setup is performing to its best capability, and go from there.

Just my $.02
 

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Discussion Starter #5
OK. Let's break this down to specifics. The car has an OE replacement power disc brake booster, 1 1/8" OE replacement master cylinder, factory original proportioning valve, OE 11" rotors, 2 15/16" OE replacement calipers, OE 9 1/2" x 2" drums, & 7/8" OE replacement wheel cylinders.

I have purchased Classic Performance Products' Master Cylinder Depth Gauge and have already made plans to do an end to end check of the brakes before adding anything new. I had considered an adjustable brake proportion valve but wanted to see if the extra braking up front might be enough to balance out the system.

look into purchasing a master cylinder with smaller primary/secondary piston diameters- this will also decrease pedal effort.
I had been hesitant to change to a different front master cylinder after reading the following.

- IF YOU INCREASE THE MASTER CYLINDER BORE THIS WILL PUSH MORE FLUID INTO THE SYSTEM FOR ANY GIVEN MOVEMENT BUT WILL REDUCE THE PRESSURE - SO THE PEDAL PRESSURE YOU HAVE TO APPLY IS INCREASED, BUT MOVEMENT REDUCED.
- IF YOU REDUCE THE MASTER CYLINDER BORE THIS WILL REDUCE THE AMOUNT OF FLUID PUSHED INTO THE SYSTEM FOR ANY GIVEN MOVEMENT BUT WILL INCREASE THE PRESSURE, SO THE PEDAL PRESSURE YOU HAVE TO APPLY IS REDUCED, BUT MOVEMENT INCREASED.
You have given me some food for thought and I will do some more testing before making any changes. Your input is appreciated. It is hard to look at something objectively when you are working on your own vehicle.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
What a day. It was time to get serious. Here is a rundown of what was done to the car. The calipers, wheel cylinders, and master cylinder were checked for leaks. Condition of the pads, shoes, rotors, and drums was verified to be good. The pushrod depth in the master cylinder was verified to be within specs.
Installed Russell's Speed Bleeders front and rear. Bleed the brakes at all four corners. (I also had someone depress the button on the metering valve while the front brakes were being bleed as per the factory service manual.) All the old brake fluid was flushed out of the system. There is no doubt in my mind that all air was purged from the system.
Finally, the icing on the cake. I spoke with several friends who are automotive technicians. I explained that I wanted a firmer pedal and better braking than I had with everything adjusted correctly and asked opinions on the SSB Brake Caliper Upgrade. One noted that the combined area of the two pistons was less than the area of the one piston. (Interesting.) regardless, everyone unanimous voted to do the upgrade. Summit agreed to price match the Scoggins-Dickey sales price of $355.49 so I couldn't hold out anymore. I purchased and installed the new dual piston calipers tonight. I would give you my first impression but I don't do impressions.:D
Seriously though, the car has a better brake pedal that it has ever had. So far, it seem to stop with less effort. As bad as I want to try some hard braking, I am going to do my best impersonation of a knowledgeable technician and allow the new brake pads to have a proper break-in period before hammering them. What I have seen so far does have me feeling very optimistic about how these are going to fair. I will be sure to post a follow-up. Stay tuned.
 
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