My '11 Caprice PPV

Chickenhawk

Well-Known Member
Well, you know how anal I am about brakes, so I will weigh in. In my opinion, Brembos will look cool and you can maybe stuff a few mm more diameter rotor under there, but at the end of the day you are spending a lot of money for looks and won't realize any difference in performance unless you are on the race track. I just looked up the test results from the MSP police vehicles test for 2011 and the Caprice beat every other other car in testing that year. Even by 2014, when Dodge vastly improved their braking performance, the Caprice was only a few fractions off the number one mark.

Tastes differ of course but if it was me, I would paint the calipers with aluminum-color caliper paint and get custom lettering in black that says Caprice PPV. Keep good pads on it and the stock brakes will outbrake nearly everything else in its class on the road.

Even though it doesn't make sense, brake feel is actually a function of the pad more than almost any other single factor. The best feel, initial cold bite, stopping power and minimal noise and dust is with the OEM pads. Everything else is a compromise. Pads with slightly better stopping, will dust like crazy. Pads with very long service life will not stop as fast. High-performance semi-mettllic pads made for the race track will often dust AND squeal.

My favorite pad next to OEM is Napa's Adaptive One brake pad. This is the one that uses the NRS backing plate technology, and having one set of aftermarket pads peel away from the backing plate, I love the idea of this backing plate technology.
 
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Mooseman

Mooseman

Moderator
And whatever happened with the insurance on it? Last I remember was you had to look into commercial vehicle insurance??
Got that sorted. Went with an independent broker and was able to get me a deal for insurance. However, because of the lack of book data, they will only refund the purchase amount rather than the "true" value in the case of a total loss. I drive like everybody is out to get me when I'm in it! :yikes:

For brakes, I definitely want to replace these pads. They're not noisy but now with these wheels, dust will be a major concern. These are aggresive semi-met police specific pads and they eat rotors like crazy. Definitely will look at Adaptive One however wonder if it's the same formulation since the original maker in Cornwall went out of business.
 
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Capote

Platinum Supporter
Got that sorted. Went with an independent broker and was able to get me a deal for insurance. However, because of the lack of book data, they will only refund the purchase amount rather than the "true" value in the case of a total loss. I drive like everybody is out to get me when I'm in it! :yikes:

For brakes, I definitely want to replace these pads. They're not noisy but now with these wheels, dust will be a major concern. These are aggresive semi-met police specific pads and they eat rotors like crazy. Definitely will look at Adaptive One however wonder if it's the same formulation since the original maker in Cornwall went out of business.
I still haven't found a brake setup I like yet, the ones I have now aren't good enough for the way I drive and they do tend to make a lot of dust. If I was to neglect cleaning my truck and wheels weekly, they'd be brown as hell right now.
 

Chickenhawk

Well-Known Member
For brakes, I definitely want to replace these pads. They're not noisy but now with these wheels, dust will be a major concern. These are aggresive semi-met police specific pads and they eat rotors like crazy. Definitely will look at Adaptive One however wonder if it's the same formulation since the original maker in Cornwall went out of business.
That is a very good question. NAPA tends to use a variety of suppliers who build to their standards and it is not always easy to figure out who they are. The Adaptive One pads used to be made by Raybestos, but even Raybestos doesn't make all their own pads anymore. They even changed the formulation for their police pads a few years after I got my Adaptive One pads.

The nice thing about the Caprice is that it uses the same pad as some of the Camaro models, so you have good choices such as the AC Delco Professional Ceramic and the Akebono ProACT pad. Both (they may even be the same pad) will give you the OEM feel.

I still haven't found a brake setup I like yet, the ones I have now aren't good enough for the way I drive and they do tend to make a lot of dust. If I was to neglect cleaning my truck and wheels weekly, they'd be brown as hell right now.
I am guessing you are using a semi-metallic instead of a ceramic pad? I would maybe try the AC Delco Professional Ceramic, Akebono ProACT or Napa Adaptive One pad. I just don't think common aftermarket "performance" pads like the Hawk or the pads that come with kits such as Brakemotive or Powerstop provide any gains on our platform, and have other compromises.
 

Capote

Platinum Supporter
That is a very good question. NAPA tends to use a variety of suppliers who build to their standards and it is not always easy to figure out who they are. The Adaptive One pads used to be made by Raybestos, but even Raybestos doesn't make all their own pads anymore. They even changed the formulation for their police pads a few years after I got my Adaptive One pads.

The nice thing about the Caprice is that it uses the same pad as some of the Camaro models, so you have good choices such as the AC Delco Professional Ceramic and the Akebono ProACT pad. Both (they may even be the same pad) will give you the OEM feel.


I am guessing you are using a semi-metallic instead of a ceramic pad? I would maybe try the AC Delco Professional Ceramic, Akebono ProACT or Napa Adaptive One pad. I just don't think common aftermarket "performance" pads like the Hawk or the pads that come with kits such as Brakemotive or Powerstop provide any gains on our platform, and have other compromises.
I haven't used a semi-metallic pads before. Always used Ceramic. These current ones are whatever Ceramic pads that came with these eBay slotted ones. I am for sure willing to try the brands you mentioned. I will probably switch my rotors and pads out soon enough, I am not liking the braking performance of my current setup at all.
 
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Mooseman

Mooseman

Moderator
Slotted and drilled are a myth. Lots of posts from me and @Chickenhawk on this so I won't repeat here.

For sure have lots of choices with Camaro pad compatibility. In Canada, Adaptive One are stupid expensive ($123CAD) but looking at Napa USA, the price is much more reasonable ($56USD= $73CAD). I think I'll order them online and pick them up at the Ogdensburg store. Only thing though is that they only have Adaptive One for the front so I'll have to go with ACDelco Pro for the rear.
 

northcreek

Well-Known Member
From what I've read, drilled rotors improve braking. Slotted rotors only improve brake pad wear. If I need more braking than stock rotors, I'll get a drogue chute. :undecided:
 

Chickenhawk

Well-Known Member
What you have read is usually from the people selling rotors, or from people who replace worn-out rotors with new ones.
From what I've read, drilled rotors improve braking. Slotted rotors only improve brake pad wear. If I need more braking than stock rotors, I'll get a drogue chute. :undecided:
Slotted rotors can get rust underneath for anyone living in winter driving conditions. It is one of those ideas that seemed like a good idea but actually contribute nothing except separate us from our money, and can sometimes even lead to early failure and undue pad wear if the rust gets underneath the braking surface of the rotor.

Drilled rotors are simply for looks. There is nothing to gain from drilled or from slotted and drilled rotors because the science simply does not support the claims.

I certainly have nothing against doing something just for the looks. Lord knows, we do a LOT of stuff just for that.

Technically, drilled rotors will always perform worse than solid rotors, all other factors being equal, but well-made drilled rotors are not really enough of a compromise to worry about. Plus, new pads and rotors will always be better than worn ones, no matter how they are made. But airflow cannot suddenly turn a 90-degree corner, and air does not flow across what is called the boundary-layer anyway. (Take off in an airplane with dust on its wings and you will land the same airplane with dust still on its wings.) Given that there cannot be any air flowing through these holes, you are now dealing with less mass, and less mass absorbs less heat, simple as that. Nobody with serious brakes use drilled rotors. (Police cars, race cars, airplanes, etc.)

The other problem with the Chinese-designed, eBay-style, drilled and slotted rotor-and-pad packages s that people often report the rotors are okay but the cheap pads that come in these packages are often noisy, wear prematurely or dust like crazy.

This is why most of us select rotors and pads separately. There are not that many manufacturers of parts anymore anyway, and most of the plants make two lines: an economy line and a premium line. When it comes to brakes - heck, anything on my beloved Trailblazer - I go premium almost every time. For example, if NAPA, I go Ultra Premium. If AC Delco, I go AC Delco Professional instead of AC Delco Advantage every time.

But tastes vary. I don't use drilled rotors because the science doesn't support the claims and it is not a look I am hoping to achieve. I don't fill my tires with nitrogen because it is the biggest consumer scam in decades. But I do have a light bar on the front (which is pretty much strictly for looks) even though I know in a collision, it will probably increase damage to my front end. But when I spend $400 on the world's best fog lights (because I do a lot of driving in snowy conditions) I want them mounted in a way that looks cool and helps me keep my factory fogs as well.

Don't tell anyone, but I am ashamed to admit that, for two years, I used to paint my calipers red every spring. It actually reduced braking distance by 12%, increased fuel mileage by 8% and lowered my 0-60 time by almost a full second.

Actually, it didn't do anything except in my mind but then I began to realize I am old enough to watch man first walk on the moon and I knew where I was when Kennedy was shot, so now they are a tasteful and more professional aluminum-color caliper paint.
 

Blckshdw

Moderator
Any updates for this thread? It's been a minute. :tiphat:

...going through the safety and it failed for the rear doors for not opening from inside (police option). Said they'll take the panels off and check for linkages. Called back later and was able to reconnect the linkages that were there (whew!). Probably will get charged for the labour.
I was looking at one of these online today (I need to stop doing that) that's local, and noticed they put sheet metal plates where the rear interior door handles go. Guess they didn't want to risk someone breaking them from yanking on them or something?

90501
 

Reprise

Lifetime VIP Supporter
I think removing access to unauthorized escape is the reason for the plates in place of the interior latches. Same for lack of a window switch on the door.

Of course, if you were just joking, and just neglected to make it obvious, my apologies.
 

Blckshdw

Moderator
Yeah, I knew why they did it, but I just assume they could detach the linkages inside the door, like they did with Moose's, all the same. Not that it would be very hard to put in new handles for folks like us who like modding (assuming they aren't hard to come by), but it seems like more work than necessary.
 
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Mooseman

Mooseman

Moderator
Mine came with the linkages detached as well as the window switches deactivated. Probably they added that plate as an extra security measure because it could be possible to pull hard enough to break the handle.

Update: Insurance has been a bitch. My previous company changed their rules and decided to not insure me anymore because I had a "non-standard VIN" since it's not in the Insurance Bureau of Canada's database. Lots of emails, calls and arguments and I was screwed. I wound up getting insurance through what's called "Facility Association", which is basically the last chance for high risk insurance, for like drunk drivers and multiple crashes. So now I'm paying $1000 more just because GM never registered these VINs. Funny thing I discovered was that the SS, which is a direct descendant of the Caprice, is in the database but was never sold in Canada. :mad:

Other than that, I still have all my exhaust parts in their boxes, from headers to tailpipes, as well as a complete G8 interior but I just haven't had the time to get to it or the weather wasn't cooperating. I want to do the exhaust first and may just rent a bay with a lift to do it. This damned thing is just too quiet!

I've had to swap back to the original wheels and tires because the set of run-flats had vibration issues and two were worn (guess which ones :biggrin: ). Just can't afford another set of tires right now.

Edit: Also picked up a set of low mileage Brembo calipers but again, a lack of time to clean them up and install them.
 

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