FM full big brake kit

[6/28/2006] Reviewed by: shane -

Applicable to: '99-'05 1.8 liter

willwoods with slotted rotors(2piece) wil pads front porterfield rear

not impressed overall good for high heat/race app. yet dosent feel balanced.lots of nose dive /rear lacking bite. the wilwoods have one pin pad changes small redeming factor. next time I will go back to drilled rotors and ebc green-street or red-race pads similar performance.yet save $1000. I think the rotors were powerstop I could not crack/warp them. yet never hard braked at more than 140mph.(280 turbo). 80k miles when sold car. I would like to try 6piston stag.setup with 4rear and much larger rotors.FM was great they are the experts .and if you keep this wilwood pac real hot its great (tight race track,toe,heel-driving etc.)next will be suspension that should cure dive. Ebrake cable with bracket on was tight fit and hangs closer to ground(scary low until on ground.) I expect this to pop with time.angle to abrupt for oem.

Track-use,brake riding girlfriend, easy front pad swaps. OK better get'em real hot for solid braking (no drinks in cupholder-nail the brakes and your coke hits the cd player or windshield). hard street or midnight sports go drilled/slotted 2piece rotors and EBC pads. on fact.calipers flatter brakeing/faster responce and put 1000 dollars into gas--NOS $$$?.

Difficult to remove without leaving damage

FM big brakes conversion

[2/21/2001] Reviewed by: Harry Thompson -

Applicable to: '90 - '97 1.6 liter 1.8 liter

11 inch Brembo Rotors (slotted version), 4 piston Wilwood calipers , steel brake lines, and Motul Brake fluid.

Excellent! Now the car really feels fun ! Installed the FM big Brake kit last week. (pulled off the new BSP Rotors). Damn!, these brakes SLAM! I got a chance to drive an Audi TT Quattro Turbo this weekend (nice car). The AUDI's brakes are really sweet! Of course I was hoping my FM brakes would end up feeling the same as the Audi's. And I am happy to report that they do! Not quite as "silky" as the Audi's but I am very impressed just with the stopping power alone.

After reading the suggested GRASSROOTS article on brakes and "What stops a car?"... I don't know....., I just couldn't get behind the idea that bigger better brakes *wouldn't* feel *any* different. But I tried the OEM, then the BSP's & finally the FM's. I most definitely feel a huge difference with the FM's! Sorry but *Brakes* stop MY car! I mean c'mon, if I had Plastic rotors and Balsa-Wood pads would better tires make that combination perform better? Yknow what I mean? And on the car they are in-fact a dramatic improvement. Anyway I appreciate all the advice from power listers (I learned alot) But I am really diggin the FM's ....

Over 30 minutes to remove completely

Reviewed by: Jim Savoy -

As described in a previous post, the kit consists of 11 inch Brembo Rotors (I elected for the cross drilled and slotted version), dual piston (per side) Wilwood calipers (like the ones that NASCAR uses), replacement steel brake lines, and synthetic fluid. The brake fluid is Valvoline is semi-synthetic that will mix with any other type of fluid. The brake pads appear to be of considerably larger surface area than the stock pads. Bill tells me that replacement pads are available from either Wilwood or Porterfield (soon). The kit is for the front only. Total installation time (with bleeding) the brake lines) was about 25 minutes.

The kit will fit on 15 inch wheels. I have a set of Ronal 15x7 rims that I use on the track and a set of Ferrari Engineering, MOMO wheels for regular use and the calipers do fit (by about 1mm!). If you have any question as to whether they will fit, Bill will send you an old caliper and you can bolt it on your car to check the fit with your wheels.

My first experience with the kit was last week at Laguna Seca for Aaron Tachibana's track event. They were so unbelievable that I had to learn how to drive the car all over again. Previously, I had slotted rotors with the Porterfield pads on the front and stock pads/rotors on the rear. This setup allowed me to brake heavily at the #3 brake marker on most turns. With the kit, I found that I was braking MUCH deeper into the turns (between the #2 and #1 brake markers) and yet was almost stopped at the #1 marker. Most times, I over braked, even though I was starting MUCH later.

I started getting much more comfortable with the car on Sunday (after almost 200 miles on the track). The effect is magnified when there is a helmeted passenger in the car with you. When you hit the brakes at the entrance to Turn 2 (the Andretti Hairpin), dropping from close to 100 mph to about 35 mph in a few feet, from the corner of your eye, you catch their head snapping back and forth from the force of the braking. Like Bill's ad says, "It's like hitting a brick wall!".

At $995 US, it might seem a bit pricy but after a few panic stops from 95-100 mph to 20 mph, you will really appreciate their worth.  So many of us spend tons of time and money trying to make the car faster and more roadworthy but the last thing we think about is better stopping.  This is a really awesome addition to any Miata/MX5 and anyone who appreciates the value of really superior performance should consider it.

I can't wait to get back on the track!!!

Under 30 minutes to remove completely

Reviewed by: Helio de Oliveira -

Not happy with the OEM brakes performance, I ordered the FM big-brakes set-up !

They come with big Brembo rotors, I ordered slotted instead of drilled, Wilwood calipers, mounting brackets, SS oil lines and pads ! They also come with brake fluid, but I choose to left that item out !

Installation is a snap, bleeding the calipers is more time consuming...there's special technique for it, but I didn't have it handy at the time, so we went the traditional way !!

Performance is very, very good...still have to try those 115mph to 45mph, but so far so good ! Pedal effort has decreased, and it's easier to modulate the brakes...very easy to trigger the ABS, too !!! =:O Frank B. was here and tried the car !! It was the first time I saw someone smilling while braking ! When he went back to his car he felt a REAL difference... ;) I used to think that other cars feel underpowered, compared with the they don't brake so well either !!

I'm still learning to use them, since all my braking references are wrong, now...I find myself braking too early !! Another added bonus is the weight!! The set up is lighter than the OEM set up, so less unsprung weight !!

The downside is that you need bigger wheels...7X15 at least, says Bill !! Overall...a great system for the performance oriented driver !! (Sound nice, ehh !! )

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