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are rear disc that much better?

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by amm888, Sep 1, 2002.

  1. amm888

    amm888 1/2 ton status

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    title of the post pretty much says it all...i'm thinking of putting in some rear discs, but is it worth the hassle/money, are rear discs that much better than the stock drums?
     
  2. Rolled

    Rolled 1/2 ton status

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    I never did the conversion on a truck before (but I plan to.) I have done it with Camaros and Firebirds though.

    For stopping power they are better but you won't ever notice it unless you drag race or just speed alot /forums/images/icons/grin.gif

    I always looked for late 70's early 80's Trans Ams with 4 wheel disc brakes to do the conversion. There are plenty of them out there for parts and they are fairly cheap. I think you can also get them off caddies too, like ElDorados.

    Be sure to get the master cylinder and proportioning valve too. They are different from rear drums.

    BTW I always did the conversion just to increase the value of my Camaros. I don't think it will make my truck worth more but I might do it anyways (some day)

    Good Luck
     
  3. BorregoK5

    BorregoK5 1/2 ton status

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    My rear disk conversion has done a great deal for my braking and keeping a straight descent down steep slippery hills. I did not change the proportioning valve but did up the front to a dana60. I run hydrabooster so perhaps that helps too.
     
  4. DieselDan

    DieselDan 1/2 ton status

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    On a 14 bolt you've got plenty of brakes with drums. More than any "little" K5 could over work. But what you get with discs are: lighter (them drums are HEAVY), don't pack with mud, are easier to service, modulate better (no servo effect), and are way cooler /forums/images/icons/grin.gif
     
  5. 83PJW

    83PJW 1/2 ton status

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    yes well said DD. a real conversation piece they are in deed !!!!! /forums/images/icons/grin.gif
     
  6. Skigirl

    Skigirl 1/2 ton status

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    Well Alex, we're in L.A. Need all the help we can get stopping wise. Of course without the disks you could rid us of a lot mor ricers... you know the ones...cut ya off then 20 feet in front at 70 they slam on their brakes.

    I decided to get rear disks after coming down the cajon pass - people think the 6000# of American steel stops on a dime I guess. The rear disks gave me a little more moron insurance. /forums/images/icons/tongue.gif
     
  7. 79Beast

    79Beast 1/2 ton status

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    Here's how I see it. Discs are better in all aspects but one. Drums have better static holding power. My 79 K10 weighs 7060lbs and stops fine with D60 discs in the front and D70 drums in the rear. I have to keep the rears adjusted and reasonably clean. Discs are self adjusting and self cleaning. They cool off better. The list goes on. Bottom line: If you run lots of mud/water or have the money, they are the way to go. If you are poor like me or keep your drums dry, they will do fine.
     
  8. amm888

    amm888 1/2 ton status

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    hey Pam! you've got a good point. i think you had told me i should get it done soon when i first got my truck and so i've been thinkin' about it for my first big 'project'. just seems like such a big to do... /forums/images/icons/blush.gif
     
  9. Skigirl

    Skigirl 1/2 ton status

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    Yea, I think it's a pretty big project, at least for me. So I chickened out and had it done. Expensive way to go tho. There are some good writeups on how to do it and I think you would do just fine. Mine are Stainless Steel Brakes. TSM has good ones too. And for some reason SSB told the techs who put it on NOT to add a proportioning valve, after i'd read some posts about that and went down there and asked the mechanic about it.

    The brake kit didn't come with extended e-brake cable and I had to get those made. Went down to Control Cable in Santa Ana. They did a great job and 24 hour turnaround. $35 each.

    I guess it depends on what you're gonna do with the truck, but for me, I felt it was worth the extra peace of mind. I figure if I have great brakes and good steering, I may be able to make it down to 7-11 without incident. /forums/images/icons/crazy.gif
     
  10. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    I doubt on our trucks over the 14bolt, that in one time stopping tests, the disk vs drums differences are that great.

    Disks don't fade like drums, and do behave a little better when both are working properly.

    Problem I have with the drums is when it gets real sloppy, wet, and or cold. The drums like to lock up if they get wet then freeze, or simply get wet and get cold. Makes downhill in snow or mud in foul weather a little scary. At best I'd say they are "unpredictable" but of course, my drum setup is about 13 years old, and could use some new parts.

    I'd rather just figure out how to make disks work, but if you've got a 14bolt, the guesswork has pretty much already been taken out of the swap by people on this board.
     
  11. 8_YOUR_H2

    8_YOUR_H2 1/2 ton status

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    I spent less on my disc setup than what it was going to cost to replace the drums. The brackets were $65, calipers $14 each, and I had a pair of rotors off of an old D44 I had turned down for $15. The only replacement drums I could find were $80 each. And that didnt include hard parts and pads.
     
  12. Sandman

    Sandman 3/4 ton status Author

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    The discs are the way to go. It was an easy conversion and was well worth the effort.
     

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