SS front brakes for an 05 LT?

BINGA

Original poster
Member
Jun 8, 2012
238
Ok, so I got a good road trip test with my new 22" wheels this past week by driving a 700 mile trip. Ride quality was actually much better than I anticipated by switching to the larger wheels and tires. One disadvantage I noticed though was since I'm now riding with a larger (and heavier I assume) rolling stock, I can "feel" a little more resistance/wobble when braking and some tracking issues under heavier braking. I was already considering some brake upgrades and am asking for advice/info on whether I should go the stock SS rotors and brake component route for my stock 05 LT, or should I go aftermarket drilled/slotted rotors and heavier duty pads for the non-SS configuration? (also of note: I'm running 1.5" spacers too) :undecided:
 

jimmyjam

Member
Nov 18, 2011
1,634
drilled/slotted rotors don't really do much to improve your day-to-day braking.

ss or ext rotors/caliper brackets are the way to go IMO
 

ScarabEpic22

Member
Nov 20, 2011
728
:iagree:

If you want a brake upgrade on a budget, find a wrecked EXT or SS and take the calipers, mounting brackets, lines, and maybe the master cylinder.

Im saving for a Baer big brake kit for my SS, just not sure I want to buy different winter wheels as 17" dont fit with the Baer calipers and rotors.:frown:
 

BINGA

Original poster
Member
Jun 8, 2012
238
ScarabEpic22 said:
:iagree:

If you want a brake upgrade on a budget, find a wrecked EXT or SS and take the calipers, mounting brackets, lines, and maybe the master cylinder.

Im saving for a Baer big brake kit for my SS, just not sure I want to buy different winter wheels as 17" dont fit with the Baer calipers and rotors.:frown:

Thought I had read somewhere that the EXT and SS brake components are the same...is that correct? Also, can someone confirm whether or not I would need the new master cylinder as well? Side note, Scarab, if you do go the Big Brake kit route, you may be able to recoup some of the cost by selling me your old components on the cheap...:wink:
 

ItsOnVoy

Member
Nov 21, 2011
2,401
I always thought the drilled roaters will make a difference in braking because if it cooling the brakes faster and all
 

jimmyjam

Member
Nov 18, 2011
1,634
BINGA said:
Thought I had read somewhere that the EXT and SS brake components are the same...is that correct? Also, can someone confirm whether or not I would need the new master cylinder as well? Side note, Scarab, if you do go the Big Brake kit route, you may be able to recoup some of the cost by selling me your old components on the cheap...:wink:
i read somewhere that the ext brackets fit the regular calipers. and that the ss brackets do not fit the regular calipers. haven't tried personally, i had just gotten copmlete ext caliper/bracket assemblies when i swapped. i think the ext brackets and rotors are the best bang per buck. if you want to dig deeper and swap the cylinder booster etc i guess you could, just depends how deep your pockets are.

ItsOnVoy said:
I always thought the drilled roaters will make a difference in braking because if it cooling the brakes faster and all
maybe if you are autocrossing and your rotors are glowing. like i said, for daily driving, its negligible. you're just losing braking surface by drilling it out. bigger rotors are increasing your braking surface as well as moving out the point of contact from the pivot point for increased braking torque

drilled and slotted rotors look cool though i can't deny that
 

ScarabEpic22

Member
Nov 20, 2011
728
BINGA said:
Thought I had read somewhere that the EXT and SS brake components are the same...is that correct? Also, can someone confirm whether or not I would need the new master cylinder as well? Side note, Scarab, if you do go the Big Brake kit route, you may be able to recoup some of the cost by selling me your old components on the cheap...:wink:

Ha, by then Ill probably just swap them onto my 02, pretty sure my right rear caliper is sticking and Ive just been too lazy to deal with it. It just squeaks a little when lightly applying the brakes, I have tried pulling the rotor and pads and using sandpaper on the rotors to scuff them a little, worked great for about a week then the squeak came back. Im the only one who notices it, so its gonna stay as-is ha! :bonk:

A new master cylinder would probably be better, but Im sure you could get away without doing it (at least initially). EXT rotors + pads + brackets would be a cheap upgrade for SWB I6 guys, remember the 5.3L V8 SWB trucks already have the bigger EXT brakes. Its only the SWB I6 models that have the smaller brakes, just like they're the only ones with the 8" rear diff. Dang it GM!:hissyfit:
 

ChevyCTFD

Member
Nov 3, 2012
3
So, if im reading this right. Stock ls lt and ext and SS all use the same spindle or knuckle just different caliper and caliper bracket and rotor size?! :eek: Edit your master cylinder is the same part number for Ls as it is for SS well that what i found for new ones online.
 

cjceg1985

Member
Dec 8, 2011
73
ChevyCTFD said:
So, if im reading this right. Stock ls lt and ext and SS all use the same spindle or knuckle just different caliper and caliper bracket and rotor size?! :eek: Edit your master cylinder is the same part number for Ls as it is for SS well that what i found for new ones online.

Yeah same stuff I just recently did the ext/5.3 rotor upgrade on my lt just used the 5.3 rotors and caliper brackets. Calipers and hub/spindle the same.
 

tblazerdude

Member
Dec 4, 2011
321
I didn't see anyone mention this, but the ext brake upgrade will not work with 16'' OEM rims. 17'' or better only.
 

cjceg1985

Member
Dec 8, 2011
73
tblazerdude said:
I didn't see anyone mention this, but the ext brake upgrade will not work with 16'' OEM rims. 17'' or better only.

Totally correct I barely have 1/4-1/2 inch between the caliper and the wheel, I have 17" wheels.
 

v7guy

Member
Dec 4, 2011
298
All you need is a caliper bracket and rotor from an EXT. It's about $25 extra per side. Someone had mentioned before that the SS caliper is iron while the SWB and EXT is aluminum. You need a 17" wheel as well.
Just pull the old stuff off, bolt the new stuff on.
 

Jkust

Member
Dec 4, 2011
946
Anything with the 5.3 and above will have the upgrades or a lwb. The 5.3 and up brakes perform substantially better in the side by side tests in the 360's. So any Rainier since they got they as a SWB only got the 5.3 first, any 9-7x since they all got tons of upgrades no matter the engine, the newer Envoys and TB's that got the upgrades later on, plus of course anything with a 6.0 got the 9-7's multiple upgrades.
 

Pittdawg

Member
Dec 5, 2011
538
Jkust said:
the newer Envoys and TB's that got the upgrades later on, plus of course anything with a 6.0 got the 9-7's multiple upgrades.

You mean the newer (i.e. 08-09) I6 SWB's received the upgraded brake package?
 

Jkust

Member
Dec 4, 2011
946
Pittdawg said:
You mean the newer (i.e. 08-09) I6 SWB's received the upgraded brake package?

I'm not certain that the newer Envoys and the Trailblazers got the 9-7x's treatment of all-in regardless of engine. I suspect they got some upgrades such as the more responsive steering but not the upgraded brakes without the 5.3. Somebody with a newer I6 would have to respond. I presume the 5.3 SWB's got it simply because of the assumption that if you spent the extra on a 5.3, you must be towing something heavy. The SAAB seemed to have a different view of what belongs on an suv vs the towing/no towing philosphy hence the many upgraded parts that all went into the later designed SS. The easy solution is to call a parts store and cross check the part numbers.
 

BoldAdventure

Member
Jun 28, 2012
1,634
Are the read calipers any larger on the SS or EXT than the SWB? I've been pondering this upgrade for a few months now after my road trip.
 

jimmyjam

Member
Nov 18, 2011
1,634
mikekey said:
Are the read calipers any larger on the SS or EXT than the SWB? I've been pondering this upgrade for a few months now after my road trip.

the rears are the same
 

BoldAdventure

Member
Jun 28, 2012
1,634
Well, there is a guy parting out an EXT and if it's 12.8 vs my 12 I might consider it, but SSBC offers a 14inch kit that is fairly priced for both front and rear. Downside is larger tire required, which may prove problematic for anyone who is offloading depending on how much larger a tire.
 

jimmyjam

Member
Nov 18, 2011
1,634
mikekey said:
Well, there is a guy parting out an EXT and if it's 12.8 vs my 12 I might consider it, but SSBC offers a 14inch kit that is fairly priced for both front and rear. Downside is larger tire required, which may prove problematic for anyone who is offloading depending on how much larger a tire.
is the ext local :undecided: i need a trans crossmember...

the ssbc front brake kit is like $1400 isn't it? you must do pretty well for yourself! :eek:

I'd think if your game is offroading you'll run out of traction before you run out of braking capacity :confused:

all you really need to convert over are the caliper brackets and a set of rotors that you'd probably want to buy new anyway.
 

BoldAdventure

Member
Jun 28, 2012
1,634
jimmyjam said:
is the ext local :undecided: i need a trans crossmember...

the ssbc front brake kit is like $1400 isn't it? you must do pretty well for yourself! :eek:

I'd think if your game is offroading you'll run out of traction before you run out of braking capacity :confused:

all you really need to convert over are the caliper brackets and a set of rotors that you'd probably want to buy new anyway.

It's an hour away from us in Sarasota. Search the parts section on CL Tampa and it will pop up at the bottom of the list.

We drove something like 5000 miles during our trip and I saw some decreased breaking performance during the trip with brand new freaking pads and rotors on the front. So I'm looking for a larger option. 14 inch rotors might be a tad bit over kill, but a few of the SS guys seem to love them. We do more on-pavement driving than off the road driving and I'd maybe the G8 and Corvette have me expecting a little more, I dunno.

:confused: Is $1400 a lot of money these days?
 

Blckshdw

Moderator
Nov 20, 2011
10,697
Tampa Bay Area, FL
mikekey said:
...

:confused: Is $1400 a lot of money these days?

:biggrin: If you don't think so, feel free to hand it to me. I'll even come pick it up from you. :tongue:
 

HARDTRAILZ

Moderator
Nov 18, 2011
49,665
Jkust said:
Anything with the 5.3 and above will have the upgrades or a lwb. The 5.3 and up brakes perform substantially better in the side by side tests in the 360's. So any Rainier since they got they as a SWB only got the 5.3 first, any 9-7x since they all got tons of upgrades no matter the engine, the newer Envoys and TB's that got the upgrades later on, plus of course anything with a 6.0 got the 9-7's multiple upgrades.

The Newer 4.2L of all models did not get the bigger front rotors. The Rainier 4.2 did not have the bigger front rotors. At least with the research I have gone through for the swap.



Can anyone fully confirm the SS and EXT front rotors are the same? Have seen slight variations in hub diamater of parts i looked up and read something about thickness is different, but trying to confirm. I know the caliper material is different.

I have new pads, 03 EXT caliper brackets, and a need for front brakes. Therefore I have been looking at rotors and for some reason I have found SS rotors cheaper than EXT.
 

Playsinsnow

Member
Nov 17, 2012
9,727

HARDTRAILZ

Moderator
Nov 18, 2011
49,665
Playsinsnow said:
I believe the EXT and SS rotors are the same size, different material? The lines and calipers(larger pistons?) are different. SS can use the 17" wheel so it can't be bigger?


Brake Conversion from LT to SS [Archive] - Chevy TrailBlazer, TrailBlazer SS and GMC Envoy Forum


SS brakes on a I6, why has no one done it? [Archive] - Chevy TrailBlazer, TrailBlazer SS and GMC Envoy Forum

Lines are the same.

Calipers are Iron on SS and Aluminum on the others. Possibly a different piston size, but can't find confirmation and not part of my question.

They should be same size, but looking for confirmation since I am seeing them as different part numbers on various sellers and stores sites.
 

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