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Grand Am Brake Conversion by GTPatrick
Started on: 01-27-2014 03:41 PM
Replies: 15 (2474 views)
Last post by: HarryG on 05-31-2014 11:42 PM
GTPatrick
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Report this Post01-27-2014 03:41 PM Click Here to See the Profile for GTPatrickSend a Private Message to GTPatrickEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
In my last posting about the 12" Corvette brake conversion , I received several answers and suggestions and replies . To those individuals I say thanks for your input . The GrandAm brake conversion was suggested as the most likely candidate for my Fiero GT o to stay within the 15" Lace wheel and I hope it will work on an SE original 14" wheel . This looks like the best way to within the needs to kmeep it looking original .

My question is now , I originally thought the GrandAm conversion for the front wheels was almost a plug and play conversion with the rear brakes needing to have a brake rotor machined down to where only the hat with the correct bolt hole spacing was left to be used under a GrandAm rotor assembly . Yes one would loose the parking brake capability unless one used a Caddy Seville caliper assembly as was suggested by a contributor in my last posting . But in reviewing the various GrandAm brake postings ( using the search capability) I somehow got the feeling that a modified rotor down to the hat par with bolt holes was also needed on the front brakes .

Which is it for the front brakes on a GrandAm '87 conversion . Use a GA brake rotor with no modification or use a GA brake rotor with a modified hat assembly under an GA unmodified brake rotor ? I just want to get this right the first time before I start the modifications .

Cheers .
GTPatrick
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Silicoan86
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Report this Post01-27-2014 05:07 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Silicoan86Click Here to Email Silicoan86Send a Private Message to Silicoan86Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
You have it backwards.

The rears are essentially a bolt-on affair, but you will lose your e-brake.

The fronts require the stock Fiero rotor/hub to be machined down so that the Grand Am rotor can fit over the top of it. You'll also need to press in longer wheel studs to accomodate the extra thickness of the Grand Am rotor. On top of that, there is a little bit of grinding required on the caliper bracket to prevent the rotor from rubbing on it.

Here's an old, but good, how-to.
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Arns85GT
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Report this Post01-27-2014 06:52 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Arns85GTClick Here to Email Arns85GTSend a Private Message to Arns85GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
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GTPatrick
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Report this Post01-27-2014 07:23 PM Click Here to See the Profile for GTPatrickSend a Private Message to GTPatrickEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Thanks for the replies . I knew that I had somehow misinterpreted the GA brake articles somehow . I guess that I had it bass ackwards concerning the rotor assembly for fore/aft brakes . Now all I have to figure if it is less inexpensive to do it myself with the help of a machine shop or go the Fiero Store route where it concerns the front brakes . Has anyone here in the Memphis Tn. area done a GA brake conversion themselves ? Maybe I can see your GA brake conversion ?

Cheers .
GTPatrick
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James Bond 007
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Report this Post01-28-2014 11:09 AM Click Here to See the Profile for James Bond 007Send a Private Message to James Bond 007Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
some where there is an aftermarket brake cable that works with the Grand am brake upgrade. I currently have it on my car, but can't locate the part number right now.
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Arns85GT
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Report this Post01-28-2014 11:54 AM Click Here to See the Profile for Arns85GTClick Here to Email Arns85GTSend a Private Message to Arns85GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I used stock cables except the driver side cable which is a Pontiac 6000 cable. The stock one was a little snug

Arn
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Arns85GT
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Report this Post01-28-2014 12:01 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Arns85GTClick Here to Email Arns85GTSend a Private Message to Arns85GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Oops double post

Arn

[This message has been edited by Arns85GT (edited 01-28-2014).]

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a_bartle
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Report this Post01-28-2014 01:52 PM Click Here to See the Profile for a_bartleClick Here to Email a_bartleSend a Private Message to a_bartleEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I did the Grand Am brake upgrade on the rear of my '86 GT. Was pretty easy, and yes I lost the emergency brake, but I never used it anyway. I really like how it turned out, gives me a little better (firmer) braking (I also have an '87 that is still stock, so I can tell the difference). Someday I'll more than likely do the fronts as well, might even consider adding the bigger booster (someone on the forum is selling them), but anyway, the GA is a great upgrade.
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uhlanstan
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Report this Post01-28-2014 07:57 PM Click Here to See the Profile for uhlanstanClick Here to Email uhlanstanSend a Private Message to uhlanstanEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
The Grand Am brakes on the rear is the best way to go , they work great a definite improvement
use low qualty cheap brake pads ,, this will give you proper brake bias the prop /combination valve works better with this swap than stock.. I was surprised by the improved braking, I did a lot of testing with the stock front brakes & the
grand Am on the rear, even manage to spin the car around twice on a wet empty 6 lane road with median
if you install wagner thermo quiets on the front & your rotors are good ,with the grand Am upgrade on the rear , There is a major difference in stopping distance & the car tracks perfectly,,even with the bad suppension I had at the time of my test .. I am running medium quality pads ,med price pads on the front at this time & they do not stop as good as the thermo quiets but the brake bias is still excellent,, tis equates the average Fiero brakes
when upgrading to the grand Am calipers on the front,, the average Fiero forum toaster head should go with the Fiero store kit ,, the price is excellent, & you get parts you did not think about ,its complete .
if you know a machine shop that will do the 2 hub/rotor cut cheap & cut down the 2 brackets cheap then you can purchase the rotors ,calipers, pads individually at lowest price ,if you are not a real experience gear head,, go with the Fiero store kit .it is a bargain..

DO NOT INSTALL TOP QUALITY BRAKE PADS WITH THE GRAND AM INSTALL ON THE REAR !!
I know there are those here that used the higher price,top quality pads ,, the grand Am/Berreta upgrade works best with low quality, low price pads ,, you want the proportioning /combination valve to function as close to stock as possible, in
a panic stop, do not take the chance you may swap car ends & be facing the rear as the car continues with the
rear end going first ..OR WORST.. when you do the rear install make certain! be sure ! that both rear wheels spin with the same resistence
there are some quality hubs available on this forum in the mall , top quality & pretty
If you use top quality brake pads like the thermo quiets on all 4 wheels ,you will have good brakes ,m, to many people buy the cheapest brake pads & the Fiero is a car that does not like cheap pads ,, the main reason for Fiero poor braking reputation is cheap pads

[This message has been edited by uhlanstan (edited 01-28-2014).]

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Arns85GT
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Report this Post01-28-2014 08:02 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Arns85GTClick Here to Email Arns85GTSend a Private Message to Arns85GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I used thermo quiets on my front Grand Am rotors and standard metal style pads on my Seville rear rotors. nice balance

Arn

[This message has been edited by Arns85GT (edited 01-28-2014).]

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82-T/A [At Work]
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Report this Post01-28-2014 08:08 PM Click Here to See the Profile for 82-T/A [At Work]Send a Private Message to 82-T/A [At Work]Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
For the record, there is nothing you really need to "do" for the front Grand Am brakes to work, short of opening up your wallet and ordering the kit.

The Fiero store sells the entire set-up with everything you need, it LITERALLY becomes a bolt-on affair. The cost of parts is maybe $20 bucks more than if you were to just replace everything with OEM.

So just to be clear, the Fiero Store includes in the kit, new hubs that have already been machined to accept the new rotors.

Conversion Kit $319.95:
http://www.fierostore.com/P.../Detail.aspx?s=56004


If you want them cross drilled, it's an extra $75 bucks:
http://www.fierostore.com/P.../Detail.aspx?s=56005


And an obligatory picture of my Fiero's suspension / brakes:

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Report this Post01-28-2014 08:24 PM Click Here to See the Profile for MulletproofMonkClick Here to visit MulletproofMonk's HomePageSend a Private Message to MulletproofMonkEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
First, let's clear up the front brakes on an 84-87. Depending on the terminology people use, you either need lathed rotors or machined hubs on an 84-87.

Why?: The Fiero has a stock solid rotor attached to the hub. New cars have the hub and the rotor slips over that allowing you to replace just the rotor. The 88 front is like this and so is the 84-88 rear. You basically need front hub for ANY 84-87 upgrade.

Options?: You have limited options. You can do it yourself or buy it from a vendor.

DIY?: The concept is simple... Cut the meat of the rotor off so you just have the hub remaining. Then install longer studs to all for the fact you are putting a rotor over top of the original hub from the original rotor.

Vendors?: While West Coast Fiero sells the hubs for $165 plus shipping, I prefer to get them from fieroguru here at $175 shipped: http://www.fiero.nl/forum/Forum4/HTML/065345.html .

MY OPINION ON VENDORS:
Use Paul (fieroguru). I have met him many times and he is awesome to deal. You will see he post plenty of free advice here in the community, he has helped many people out and his build threads are clean and precise. He spends months to make sure that a part is right before he puts it out for sale, puts his own money out there on his products and doesn't ask for people to front money (that proves there is a market for quality(. He is a straight shooter and he ships when he says he will.

While WCF has been in business a long time and Chris is knowledgeable and his products good, I have never had anything ship in a timely manner. I suggest you do your own research.

Special Note: On the front you want to make sure that you install the brakes with the bleeders up. This basically requires you to flip where the caliper was normally installed. R GA caliper to the left side and L GA caliper to the right side. I believe this was because of the caliper in front of the rotor versus behind the rotor. I had mine down and it wouldn't bleed. Don't make this mistake...

The rear Grand Am brakes are bolt on with the exception that you lose the parking brake.

------------------
-Brian

My 87 GT Poly Suspension Upgrade (all pics) thread
Removing the roof panel
My HUD install thread
Modified stock air canister and base to 3.5 inch for 3800na

Isn't it strange that after a bombing, everyone blames the bomber, his upbringing, his environment, his culture, his mental state but … after a shooting, the problem is the gun?

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Arns85GT
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Report this Post01-28-2014 09:58 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Arns85GTClick Here to Email Arns85GTSend a Private Message to Arns85GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I also reversed the Seville calipers so the nipple was up

Arn
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Report this Post01-29-2014 05:43 PM Click Here to See the Profile for thesameguyClick Here to Email thesameguySend a Private Message to thesameguyEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
FWIW, I bought Raybestos 5009R rotors from Amazon.com for $26ea (they are $35ea right now) and had a local machine shop turn them down ("remove the meat") for $20ea. My cost to "make" hubs was $90, current cost of doing the same thing would be $110. I bought 10 wheel studs from for $15 total from rockauto and installed them using a $25 tool from Lisle. The total cost to prep for new brakes was $130, now it would be $150. It could be done for cheaper if you use cheaper rotors as your basis (rockauto has Fiero rotors down into the teens) and if you don't buy a $25 tool to install the studs and do it the old fashioned way. If you're pinching pennies, you can do this in your home town for $80 or so. Otherwise, $165 to the WCF for turnkey hubs ain't so bad.
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Report this Post05-31-2014 11:26 PM Click Here to See the Profile for thomaszrClick Here to Email thomaszrSend a Private Message to thomaszrEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Does anyone have a part # for the longer studs needed for the front upgrade? The counter monkeys at O'really's here are beyond useless...
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HarryG
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Report this Post05-31-2014 11:42 PM Click Here to See the Profile for HarryGClick Here to Email HarryGSend a Private Message to HarryGEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Look for Dorman 610-323.

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