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Brakes for my first hpde help!!!!


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I have an 03 Audi a4 b6 1.8t I will be using for my first hpde at road Atlanta in aug. my question

is should I be using stock autozone street pads or ebc yellow stuff?

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German OE pads are pretty good. I would think you will still push them towards the end of the weekend, even during your first event. However, my personal experience with ebc is that; if that is the alternative...save your money. Someone like Andrew will recommend a good Hawk compound or Adam at Carbotech; http://www.ctbrakes.com/; if Hawk isn't your brand. Carbotech is also non-corrosive, which could be a plus to you as you are driving a street car. Pagid and Cobalt are other brands worth noting, although a bit more $$. The short answer is that you most-likely don't HAVE to upgrade your pads as if anything you may experience a little fade on your first outing. However, this first event will leave you with information running out your ears and sensory overload as it is, so anything you can do before the event that will prevent you from having to worry about that particular thing during the event is a BIG plus. You'll want to spend your time learning and having fun vs dinking with your car or worrying if some component is going to be sufficient.

 

Flush with a good fluid and get a decent pad so it's not a concern and go have a blast.

 

By-the-way....welcome to the addiction!

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I would always recommend getting a better/more track tolerant pad and fluid. its worth the dollars to know that you will push the brake pedal and the car will slow, instead of possibly pushing the brake pedal an it going to the floor and or just nothing happening.

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EBC yellows worked well for me when I first started. Once I got the hang of it and really started cutting my lap times even the EBC blues did not cut it. If you are going to use EBC start with the Blues. They work well on the street also and should be good through HPDE groups 1 and 2. After that you'll have to abandon EBC.

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If the pads that are on your car now are ceramic then you need to change them. With that being said whatever pad you decide on you want to use a carbon-metallic compound. I've never run Hawk pads so I can not talk about them I do use Carbotec pads like many others do. You will need to bed your new pads into the rotors before you get on track, since your car is still street legal you will not have a problem with that. If you plan on switching pads back and forth from street to track you may want to get another set of rotors to go with the track pads.

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My first HPDE1 I used the stock Brembo setup on my SRT8....cooked the fluid the first session.

 

If your convinced you'll never track the car again maybe you try to get by on the stock brake setup.......but nobody does this just once!!! Change the fluid to a GOOD track use fluid and simply leave it in the car (I bought a track car a year ago and don't track the SRT8 anymore but still run Wilwood EXP in the car.) Get good advice from Andrew or Carbotech (what I run) and use what they tell you for pads.

 

That's all you'll need for the first few weekends and maybe through HPDE 1 and 2.

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Happy to have you on board with NASA-SE and welcome to NASA as a whole.

Brakes are one of those few things you probably shouldn't skimp on if possible. Plus since you're already questioning the current setup, it'll bother you all weekend and take away from some of the enjoyment. Rest your mind and have the confidence you need when you stab on the middle pedal by finding the best upgrade within your budget.

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My first DE in a 3400# street car, I replaced all brake fluid with ATE200 (blue can, amber fluid, great track fluid for not too much $$) and installed Hawk HP+ pads (these are a street/track pad, with emphasis on street, but much better than Autozone I suspect), which worked fine, until I went down the rabbit hole and installed a 13" StopTech BBK, but I digress.

 

At the very least, change the fluid to ATE200 or equivalent, and make sure that whatever pad you have, you have more than 50% to start.

 

Mike

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My first DE in a 3400# street car, I replaced all brake fluid with ATE200 (blue can, amber fluid, great track fluid for not too much $$) and installed Hawk HP+ pads (these are a street/track pad, with emphasis on street, but much better than Autozone I suspect), which worked fine, until I went down the rabbit hole and installed a 13" StopTech BBK, but I digress.

 

At the very least, change the fluid to ATE200 or equivalent, and make sure that whatever pad you have, you have more than 50% to start.

 

Mike

 

Mike and I have similar cars and the same level of addiction. I used Hawk HPS pad on my first weekend at RA. The pads were completely gone by the end of day Sunday. I then used Hawk HP+ pads for a while. They can be noisy on the street. I now use Carbotech XP10/XP8 pads with an Akebono BBK. I now have spare rotors that I use when I put the street pads back on. Don't skimp on the safety items. You will want to continue this addiction as often as possible.

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FWIW I ran my stock brakes without issues in TTC at Pocono this past weekend in my 2006 Audi S4 which I think has the same front calipers as your A4 and weighs 500 pounds more. I did do two things to help them out though: flushed fluid with new ATE Typ 200 and removed the front dust shields behind the rotors. I also always pulled in after 10-15 minutes just to be safe since the OEM brake pads are not really made to operate at track temperatures.

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I also always pulled in after 10-15 minutes just to be safe since the OEM brake pads are not really made to operate at track temperatures.

 

^ This is exactly what you want to avoid.

 

Cut 8 sessions 5 minutes short and you've shorted yourself 2 full sessions over the weekend. Cut them 10 minutes short and you've shorted yourself a whole day! Not exactly getting your money's worth....and these events aren't cheap. Lots of different ways to say it but just go ahead and upgrade the pads and fluid.

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When you're starting out, every second of tracktime with that instructor in the right seat is very valuable. You can even learn stuff on the warmup and cooldown laps!

 

If you don't think it is, price out a driver coach for the weekend...

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I guess I try to be more conservative. If I were going to my first track day I wouldn't want to nearly double the cost by adding track brake pads when I didn't know if I'd ever use them again. (Just like I ran the S4 with street tires and brakes in TT because it might have just been too slow to even bother with making it an actual TT car - good news is it isn't )

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when I didn't know if I'd ever use them again.

 

Don't give him any illusions that he'll be anything but A) hooked and B) car parts poor after his first time on track.

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Great thread, will add my 2 cents.

 

You will never improve as much as you do that first weekend, and you will be hooked for sure. Even though HPDE1 can be relatively slow due to all the beginners out there, you very well could be will be pushing the limits of an unmaintained set of brakes. At this point in your education, I'd worry less about the type of compound you use and be more concerned that there is a lot of meat on the pads you have. A nice thick pad is a good heat sink, and heat is your enemy. A thin pad will readily transfer heat to your fluid and will wear rapidly. Replace your brake fluid beforehand with an ATE Gold, or something with a similar high dry boiling point. If you don't like changing brake fluid, you could splurge for a Castrol SRF, which offers high dry and wet boiling points and will last you all season.

 

Once you are hooked you can consider a track day upgrades in your compound and components. There are lots of very streetable upgrades. As you consider upgrades, make sure you consider your entire traction budget; you don't want great brakes and crappy tires. (When you are ready for track tires, drop me a line. I have a set of BBS wheels from my old B6 and my wife keeps reminding me how much space they are taking.)

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I guess I try to be more conservative. If I were going to my first track day I wouldn't want to nearly double the cost by adding track brake pads when I didn't know if I'd ever use them again. (Just like I ran the S4 with street tires and brakes in TT because it might have just been too slow to even bother with making it an actual TT car - good news is it isn't )

 

Valid point. I know the 1st time I went out I ran stock pads and tires. Once I was sure this was a sport I wanted to continue, then I began making the proper changes. Maybe going out the 1st time with stock pads and tires to see if this is a sport you want to continue or not is a good move, before taking the plunge and emptying the wallet.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I know this is my first post, but you should really upgrade the brake pads and flush the system with a quality fluid. This is NOT the area you want to skimp-on....even if it is your first event. The fact that you're even asking the question shows you're thinking about safety (this is a GOOD thing). I saw an EXPERIENCED driver and well prepared car lose his brakes at VIR during a HPDE in May...if it can happen to him, it can happen to anyone. His car was destroyed and the driver and passenger went to the hospital.

 

Also, since this is your first event, and probably the first event for a lot of other drivers in your class, you cannot predict how they will act on track and you may be forced to react to them...therefore anything you can do to increase the margin of safety between you and other cars should be done.

 

I like Hawk pads and I'm using Motul 600 fluid. This combo is working well for me at places like VIR (Full Course), Summit Point (Shenandoah) and NJMP.

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  • 1 month later...

Hopefully you had a blast. If you didn't change them before, I bet you upgraded them now. And if you're like me, you went the extra mile and upgraded the lines to stainless steel, and the fluid to ATE Super Blue (even though it's amber color now: excellent example of stupid legislation). Excessive heat will crack your rotors, ruin the remainder of your weekend, and cost you a lot more than top notch pads would have. If you are still smoking your pads when you come in, invest in a heat gun, so you can monitor things carefully...again, cheaper then replacing cracked rotors. And you can track your tire temps too to dial in your air pressures depending on the conditions. I think someone else on the thread mentioned the addictive nature of the sport.

 

Happy tracking!

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