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    GT3 Brake Options?

    Having read mostly negative feedback from owners with PCCB
    in the past, I am uncertain if I should order them on the GT3.

    Correct me if I am wrong. but PCCB appears not to be the ideal setup for track due to heat & wear issues. The advantage of lower unsprung weight, best appreciated on the track, appears to be offset by problems with heat buildup.
    If it were better for track conditions as RC pointed out in the past, Porsche would put it on their GT3 Cup cars.

    For street conditions, the lower unsprung weight while still important is less critical. The promise of long service life may not hold up if driven hard and will be offset by the expense of servicing them.

    My question is, does anyone know if Porsche has made significant developments with PCCB since it's introduction to
    make it the superior brakes for street & track? It is not uncommon for Porsche to come out with a product with some teething problems that it fixes in 6 - 12 months. Or do the improvements to the new GT3 steel brakes clearly make it the
    better performance braking option?

    Thanks
    Peter

    Re: GT3 Brake Options?

    I have had just too many on track brake overheating problems and so I am going to be very conservative with respect to PCCB. Even if Porsche claims an improvement, I would not want to be the first customer to test the system. Let someone else be a beta tester. Then in a couple of years I will upgrade if it turns out to work well. To me the $3k extra cost of such a strategy ($8k factory option versus $11k aftermarket upgrade) is well worth the reduction in risk.

    Unsprung weight

    Hi Peter,

    I agree with your comments save for when you say that unsprung weight is less important on the street. I think that the opposite is probably true. Tracks tend to be relatively smooth and pot hole free. It is the street that provides testing conditions for suspensions.

    I do think that the average buyer can probably do pretty well on the street with PCCB's. So long as they are never overheated then they will be fine. But the above average buyer is going to have trouble even on the street.

    Another factor for track users is the cost of the parts. The standard stuff is all cheap throw away consumables. But you won't be very happy when it comes time to throw away a ceramic rotor.

    We'll test out your development theory shortly. My car is with Porsche AG in Stuttgart and one of the things they are expected to replace is the PCCB's.

    Stephen

    Re: Unsprung weight

    Stephen - Have you statyed with PCCB the whole time or did you ever switch to steel? Curious about the differences if you've tried 'em both. Does the new upgrade for your PCCB include better air-cooling?

    Good luck - hope it's an improvement. I find it curious that the new Ferrari Stradale has these same brakes standard if they're not good on the track...

    PCCB

    I had steel brakes for the first 21,000 km. Then they were upgraded to ceramic.

    The original steel brakes faded, overheated the standard pads and cracked the rotors. That was the reason I was the first to get the PCCB's on the Turbo in Belgium. It was either that or replace my steel system with another steel system and then replace that shortly after with the PCCB's. So my dealer convinced the importer to give them to me first. They're regretted it ever since.

    For me, the standard pads were a problem. I believe that a slightly better pad would have fixed both the overheating and fading problems. As for the rotors, they're cheap and new rotors would easily fix that problem. Otherwise I liked the steel system.

    I never liked the amount of peddle travel I got with the PCCB's. Also, the pads didn't seem to "bit" quite so nicely. I believe that's because of the compromises they made on the pads to get rid of the squeal noise problem. Certainly the P40's on the Turbo were worse than the P90's on the GT2 (though many GT2 drivers change to the P40 because of the noise).

    The bigger problem for me was heat. Heat destroys everything. Certainly they do not fade and that is absolutely wonderful. And the unsprung weight difference is also very noticeable. But heat them up and it destroys the rotors and fries the pads. Heat cycle the pads a few times and they will never come back. Also, when hot the wear rate is phenomenal. I honestly believe that a more aggressive driver than I could probably destroy a set of pads within just a few miles.

    The upgrade on the Turbo does not include the air scoops of the GT2. In my case, the dealer added them later as an attempt to solve the problem. I'm sure that they helped but they're not enough. One problem might be that the Turbo has a dust shield whereas the GT2 does not. The dust shield tends to block the airflow. I think it is a stupid idea as there is dust everywhere no matter what. Also, the GT2 scoops really hang down. Most people destroy them very quickly. The trend is to replace the scoops on the GT2 with smaller Turbo scoops because of this problem.

    The car I'm now driving has steel brakes. It also only had 2,100 km on it when I picked it up and the brakes obviously hadn't been used much. The improvement was so noticeable on the drive home. But that's comparing my shot PCCB system to a perfect steel system.

    I don't know what the future holds for my car. The warranty expires on 20 March (two years). But they've had my car in the shop for so long now that it just isn't funny. I may ask them to extend the warranty for a period. I had been thinking about taking my Turbo and extensively modifying it after the warranty (engine, cage, seats and most important, suspension). But with the PCCB's I just don't see the point. So probably at some point it will be sold. Likely in a few months the car will be shipped to the USA and used there for a year. I need to keep the car for three years in order to avoid having to pay the VAT on the sale. So after I may bring it back to Europe and sell it. There is no way that I can drive the car as hard in the USA as I do here. For that kind of driving the PCCB's should be fine - even desirable. So I'm hoping that they will now remain in good shape.

    As for Ferrari, I think it is all in the pad development and the ability of the ceramics to withstand heat. Get to a certain point in the development process and they will survive. It is just a matter of time before they become really good. It is the right direction even if Porsche was premature about it.

    Still haven't had my car back from Porsche AG and no idea yet what they've done to it. They've had it for 16 days now!

    Stephen

    Re: PCCB

    Thanks for the update - best of luck to you!

    PCCB update

    Rennteam has sofar been the place for discussion of the PCCB issue. However, a discussion has recently started on the Rennlist site on the same topic. I have posted a more recent update on my brakes to that thread. For reference, the link is:

    Topic: GT3 Ceramic Brakes

    Stephen

     
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