[V8Vairs] rear disc brake setups

Sethracer at aol.com Sethracer at aol.com
Sun Dec 21 19:16:01 EST 2008

In a message dated 12/21/2008 2:50:09 PM Pacific Standard Time,  
The13Bats at aol.com writes:

I am  sure this is a novice question 101 but what is the best  way to add 
discs to the vair?
Many thanks

"Best" is quite relative. (Just ask my relatives!) First you should  
determine the usage for the car. If you will be really racing the car, then  the rear 
brakes should be converted as a part of the complete braking  system. In that 
case the rear design will depend on the  front disks you will be using and the 
tire/wheel combination. If the car is  almost entirely a street car - then 
you have to determine why you want to switch  to discs on the rear at all. But 
if you will be doing some high speed driving -  on the track or on the street 
(!) than a conversion is workable. If you want to  retain a parking brake, then 
the easiest way is to go with a caliper that also  provides a mechanically 
actuated clamping force. The Cadillac/Old/Buick H-body  will do this - but has a 
reputation for finicky adjustment and operation. (And a  bi*ch to bleed!)  
Both Clarks and Corvair underground sell a rear disk  brake conversion kit 
using, I believe, the GM Cadillac caliper. SSBC  makes an aftermarket replacement 
that is a bolt in replacement, at  least it bolts right onto to the Cadillac 
bracket after you have modified  the bracket's hole pattern to match the 
trailing arm bolt pattern. A reasonable  easy job. The 93-97 Camaro (Z28 and Y87 
option) uses a smaller combo rear  caliper. According to a reliable source, they 
are too small for the rear of the  Corvair. The Camaro has a lot less weight on 
the rear brakes - especially when  hard braking! If you want to try it, I 
have a complete, never-used,  setup. The Cad caliper and the SSBC replacement 
both match the 1" thick  10.5" diameter rotor which is the easiest to match to 
the Corvair. The most  common one supplied is the S10 truck 4WD front. I use 
these all around on  my car. A couple of mods must be done to use these rotors. 
Both the front and  rear Corvair wheel hubs flanges are slightly too large to 
fit into the  rotor. The front is fairly easy, but the rear hub carriers have 
to be  disassembled to cut the OD down. In addition the small shoulder that 
centers the  drum has to be removed, front and rear. The SSBC front "GM Metric" 
replacement  caliper will also fit into the Cadillac Caliper bracket. Of 
course, those  do not have a parking brake. That is what I am running on my race 
car. Fronts  and rear are the same, lefts are rights are mirror images. I am 
working on a  secondary method for a parking brake. SSBC sells a small spot brake 
for  mechanical application. I am working on adding that to the Cadillac 
caliper  bracket. It should work with the stock parking brake lever. Note - It will 
not  be an "Emergency" brake! Just for parking. Any specific questions, just  
Seth  Emerson

C's the Day! - Corvair, Camaro, Corvette,  Calipers

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