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How are stock nsx brakes?

Joined
30 March 2005
Messages
30
New owner, and just wondering how good the nsx brakes are stock? We will be tracking the car a lot and driving it pretty hard, and upgrades recommended? thanks for the info
 
There are much better drivers on here than me, but I think for a novice to intermediate level, the stock brakes with aftermarket pads work very well. Others may disagree. If you go FI, it is often recommended on nsxprime to go to a BBK.
 
Depends on how you drive. I am all throttle and brakes at the last minute(second) driver. My rotors would heat up and warp continually. I replaced quite a few sets before I got smart and went to drilled/slotted rotors, Porterfield race pads, stainless steel lines, Dali brake duct scoops, and the brake fluid Dali sell. This solved almost all my problems and created some new ones, ie. lots of brake dust.
I think had I tracked the car I would have defiantly went with a big brake package for sure.
If you are not a hard driver the brakes may be fine for you. If you do a search on Prime you will find many other people who are less than happy with the stock brake set-up.
 
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You should do a search. There should be a plethora of topics that discuss every point you should consider.

For me, the stock brakes just weren't cutting it after I became a better driver. Davie brings up a good point, they should be fine for beginning and intermediate drivers (not saying I'm advanced, just beyond the performance of the stock brakes). The Stoptech Aerorotors and the two piece rotors that Dali offers should be good enough for 85% of HPDE drivers. Just make sure to get good pads and hi-temp fluid.
 
I sell Rotora, Brembo, Wilwood, Greddy/Alcon, Stoptech, BBK's for the NSX.

Unless you use +500 degree fluid, aftermarket pads, slotted rotors, s.s lines, and some serious ducting, they will fade big time. And even after that, BBK's offer more pistons to clamp, larger rotors to add surface area for clamping and cooling, 2-pc rotors that will offer some "give" to help reduce cracking, and they look killer behind your wheel too!

All of the above offer 4-piston calipers, and Wilwood even has a 6 piston. Rotors are 2-piece, in smooth, slotted, drilled, or slotted and drilled choices. Some offer rear kits and e-brake kits as well. I am one of the anti-oem brake guys on prime. My motto is how can you learn anything about getting smoother and faster, if brake worries are in your head at every corner? Don't worry about bhp, get the safety equip, brakes, tires, and suspension done first, before the first performance part is purchased for the motor.

I am glad to see another NSX'r taking it to the track! :wink:
 
i too think the stock brakes are garbage. Im putting on aftermarket pads and rotors on thursday...
 
Not sure what year NSX you have, but the stock brakes on my '05 are very good. I spoke with CompTech (Shad) about upgrading the brakes and he suggested for trackday events, changing to better pads, SS brake-lines and higher temp brake fluid would make a big improvement for my car. But if I'm very serious about tracking the car, then a BBK would be the way to go.
 
I think the NSX brake is awesome. With good pads, I think NSX can brake on per or out brake pretty much any car out there. The balance is phenomenal. The only thing is that it does get quite hot esp on the NA1 setup due to small rotor so you need good cooling and replacing often. I think the big brake kit will help in that aspect.

I would say try tracking with stock setup + good track pads and see how you like it. If you feel that it is insufficient, then get big brakes. I would agree that expert drivers will benefit from BBK+track tires. One thing that I am afraid of with BBK is that it may screw with the balance of front/rear.

Personally, with NA2 brakes, cobalt pads and street tires, it suits my needs as an intermediate driver.

-ak
 
The stock brakes are quite good, actually. The only problem is when they have to stop over and over and over and . . . over. And then when the next session comes around and you start the process all over again to find out your rotors are warped (see Stoptech definition).

I put on Stoptechs b/c I realized I'd either have to stop pushing the car or buy another track car. And since I enjoy the NSX so much, the balanced performance of the Stoptechs were welcome. Now if only I can the car handling right!
 
RP-Motorsports said:
I sell Rotora, Brembo, Wilwood, Greddy/Alcon, Stoptech, BBK's for the NSX.

Unless you use +500 degree fluid, aftermarket pads, slotted rotors, s.s lines, and some serious ducting, they will fade big time. And even after that, BBK's offer more pistons to clamp, larger rotors to add surface area for clamping and cooling, 2-pc rotors that will offer some "give" to help reduce cracking, and they look killer behind your wheel too!

All of the above offer 4-piston calipers, and Wilwood even has a 6 piston. Rotors are 2-piece, in smooth, slotted, drilled, or slotted and drilled choices. Some offer rear kits and e-brake kits as well. I am one of the anti-oem brake guys on prime. My motto is how can you learn anything about getting smoother and faster, if brake worries are in your head at every corner? Don't worry about bhp, get the safety equip, brakes, tires, and suspension done first, before the first performance part is purchased for the motor.

I am glad to see another NSX'r taking it to the track! :wink:

this guy sounds like he knows what he is talking about! Track use - suspension, brakes, and tires BEST BET! Safety is also should be a concern if tracking.
 
When I just had my NSX the brakes where about the only thing I did not really like.
Because I tend to drive faster with the NSX than with my other car the need for good brakes is definitely there.
During my first few track-days I also experienced a lot of fading after only a few laps. I really was a bit dissappointed then.
However, a few friends with a lot more experience sat beside me giving me instructions, teaching me how to take corners, how to step on the brakes as hard and late as possible and therefore, also, for a shorter time.
This alone seemed to do wonders for my fading problems. But I still thought I needed to step on the pedal very hard and deep to get any decent deccelaration. The initial 'bite' of the brakes just did not seem firm enough.
I then upgraded my brakepads to the Dali Axxis pads. I am not suggesting these are the best but there was big difference in bite and my confidence in the brakes improved. I also fitted the bigger Dali air-deflectors. I enjoyed driving fast and braking late.
I did some braking tests on a reasonably good road, using a acceleration meter, to measure my braking distances. And to be honest, what I came up with did no really impress me. From 100kph, distances always seemed to be around 130-135 feet. The results from the G-meter (AP-22) suggested that it took a while for the brakes to reach their maximum decceleration during which time, of course, you still travel quite fast and cover a lot of distance.
The maximum G-force was, however, above 1G. At that time, I posted some results here:
http://www.nsxprime.com/forums/showthread.php?t=20981

After that, I have upgraded the front rotors to the Stoptech Aerorotors and changed my fluid to Motul. The one time I used the Stoptech rotors on the track (Spa) I did not experience any fading at all, even when driving to my limit.
However, I am still thinking about upgrading my brakes to the 97+ brakes (or bigger) using the standard calipers on larger brackets to get more leverage and better initial bite. Just because I think those first few seconds of braking are the most important and I would like to get my maximum force available as quickly as possible.
 
The Type-R NSX in a Best Motoring test with the Porsche 997, Ferrari 360, Datsun Fairlady 350Z and Lamborghini Galardo (sp?)...

The NSX although being the lightest car had the worst braking performance by a considerable margin! I think the 350Z even beat it by some 5 meters in the 100km/h-0 braking test.

The Porsche was the best, I will watch the test again and get the figures for you all, but it was obvious how outclassed the NSX Type-R was in the braking department.

Now my Q. is... How can brakes which are require ABS because they are good enough to be easily "Locked up" be so outclassed by another companies braking system like Porsche?
 
I think we need to decide what we mean by brakes and what we mean by good. (And no, I am not a Bill Clinton wannabee:D )

If we are discussing stopping power or distance, then the NSX is limited due to front tire size, which also limits its cornering ability at the limit.

If we are discussing resistance to fade and the dreaded shivers, then as others have mentioned, a change of pads and rotors will make a huge improvement on the track, but not really necessary for the street except for the wildest of canyon runners.

Track pads are designed to handle higher rotor temps without glazing or chunking. Consequently they do not always handle normal street temps as the rotors are too cool and the pads are not at optimal temperature. Rotor temps "only" matter if you are getting fade or a spongy pedal (two topics down). There are times in the winter months when rotor temps may not get high enough if you are using aftermarket rotors and pads. Carbotech and Cobalt are probably the most popular track pads for the NSX. Stock pads are great for street use and beginning track use. They are very quiet and dust very little, but will fade if used aggressively, repeatedly. Track pads typically dust and may squeal. Different people have different levels of "acceptance" for these traits.

For rotors, the best are two piece, especially if the hat is floating. The combination of an open,lightweight,aluminum hat and typically directional vanes in the iron disc allow a tremendous amount of air to flow from the center of the rotor to the periphery cooling the discs 2-3 times better than a solid rotor. If the hat floats, then the rotor disc can flex slightly due to heating and cooling but maintain an equalized position between the pads to help reduce the dreaded shudders. The next best would be solid rotors with directional vanes. These would be close to the two piece if ducting was provided. Otherwise in warm or hot weather, they will lead to fade or soft pedal, even with great fluid.

Then there is fluid. If you have solid rotors, use the best fluid you can get or afford due to higher rotor temps (see above). Look at both wet and dry boiling points, but many think wet is more important. If you can easily bleed, then dry is probably the figure to watch, as hopefully the fluid gets changed often enough to not worry about boiling. The big boys now are Castrol SRF and a couple of formulations by Project Mu and Prospeed. Many use Motul or ATE. I use Ford Super Duty. Between the two piece rotors and speed bleeders, it works beautifully for me. Many will scoff because it only costs a little over $3 a pint. A lot will also depend if you are doing endurance events versus sprints.

BBK - Are they worth it????
This comes down to personal preference and type of driving (enduro vs. sprint) If you have ever read any of my post, you know I am a huge fan of stock brakes. I should say right now I have never driven an NSX (or any car for that matter) on the track with big brakes. But in three years of tracking my two NSXes I have never wanted more brake. My combo of Panther Plus pads, Project Mu two piece rotors at all four corners, and Ford Super Duty fluid. I bleed before each event, and will occasionally bleed at the track if the sessions are crowded and I am having to use my brakes more than just the braking zones. I run with the smallest wheels that will fit over my calipers to reduce unsprung weight (and tire cost) and will one day get very lightweight wheels to run 15" slicks once I work out fitment issues at the front. Andrie Hartanto says he can modulate the billet calipers better than the stock sliding calipers, and I take that as a valid argument. Rob Morrison says my pads (CTPP) do not allow him to modulate his Grand Am Cup car well. Point taken. It all comes back to personal needs and desires.

BTW, I have read many times that Forced Induction requires or needs a BBK. I say bunk. I know very fast NSXes that are FI and use stock brakes and out brake P cars on hot tracks in the south. So if you want to spend 10 grand or a lot more and then spend 4-5 grand on a BBK and new wheels and tires to fit, be my guest. I am now stepping off my soap box. Bye-Bye:D
 
I've got 10,000 actual track miles in my '91 NSX. (The exact number is 9,896, including 246 track miles this past weekend.) I have experienced most of the alleged problems with the NSX brakes, and I think most of them are being misdiagnosed when anyone claims that the stock brakes are inadequate. And some people get items like big calipers and stainless steel lines just because they like the looks; hey, if that's your thing, go for it. I'm still using my original calipers and lines, and they work just fine.

My suggestion: Start with the stock brakes. If and when you feel that you need more, then upgrade on an incremental basis. There is no sense in going out and spend $5-10K on a big brake kit (along with wheels/tires to fit) if you don't really need it. And you won't know if you really need it or not unless you try a few other things first - and those other things are not only much less expensive, but also are things that you will need to be replacing periodically anyway. So it costs you almost nothing to find out.

The stock brakes - calipers, pads, rotors - are actually excellent, in my experience. Fade? Baloney. I would bet that 90 percent of the claims of stock brakes fading are due to "green pad syndrome" - the fact that brake pads need to be heated up and outgassed for a couple of hard track sessions before they will be fade-free. This is true of any brake pad, not just the stock pads. Take them out a couple of times, and they won't fade for the rest of their life.

However, pads are "consumables", meaning, they are an item that you will use up and need to replace over and over again. This gives you the opportunity to try different pads, if you don't like the ones you are using. As mentioned above, the stock pads are an excellent pad for street use as well as beginner/intermediate track use. There are aftermarket street/track pads that are also very good for this purpose. (For example, right now I really like the GT Sport brake pads from Cobalt Friction.)

If you want a track-only pad, there are many good track pads on the market, including Cobalt's Spec VR pad, among others. The downsides of track-only pads are that they usually squeal (a LOT), they dust (a LOT), and they require warming up before they are effective. If you are willing to live with these downsides on the street (or if yours is a track-only car), you can use them all the time; otherwise, you can change your pads before and after each track event.

Rotors, too, are consumables; with a lot of track usage, they will eventually crack. Two-piece rotors usually last longer before cracking. In my experience, I haven't noticed any difference in longevity between different one-piece rotors - stock, aftermarket, solid face, cross drilled, slotted, etc. I also have found that NSX rotors don't warp; however, you can experience shudder in the brakes if you don't bed them properly. You can read more about bedding brakes on Stoptech's website here and here.

Fluid? Sure, use a good high-temperature fluid like Motul RBF 600. Do a search and you will find topics here that give the boiling temperatures for various fluids, such as this one.

So do all of that. If you find that you are still encountering braking problems, you might consider installing cooling ducts like mine, shown in this topic.

That's as far as I've gotten, using the same incremental approach that I'm recommending here. I'm very happy with my car's braking. If I wanted more braking power, I would get track pads, but I'm willing to sacrifice a little bit of braking power for the convenience of not changing pads before and after events and not having gross squealing on the street. If I wanted still more braking power, I suppose the next step would be a big brake kit; however, I find that it's totally unnecessary for my needs, since I am not experiencing any braking problems whatsoever with my current setup.

ncdogdoc said:
I think we need to decide what we mean by brakes and what we mean by good. (And no, I am not a Bill Clinton wannabee )
Who? Oh, you must mean a George Bush wannabe. :D

ncdogdoc said:
Then there is fluid. If you have solid rotors, use the best fluid you can get or afford due to higher rotor temps (see above). Look at both wet and dry boiling points, but many think wet is more important.
I can't imagine why anyone would think wet boiling temperature is important for track use. Most people who track their cars flush their brake fluid pretty often - at least once a year, and usually more often than that. Because the fluid doesn't sit in the car for extended periods of time, it doesn't have much chance to absorb moisture that would lower its boiling temperature.

ncdogdoc said:
The big boys now are Castrol SRF and a couple of formulations by Project Mu and Prospeed. Many use Motul or ATE. I use Ford Super Duty. Between the two piece rotors and speed bleeders, it works beautifully for me. Many will scoff because it only costs a little over $3 a pint.
No, I wouldn't use Ford because its dry boiling point is 550 F and its wet boiling point is 284 F. I use Motul, which has a dry boiling point of 593 F and a wet boiling point of 420 F. And it costs less than $20 for enough fluid to completely flush the NSX brake system. For me, $20 spent once a year on a higher temperature fluid is worth every penny.
 
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