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i recently bought a super clean 1989 LX hatchback for 1600 bucks. i almost didnt get it because it had rear drum brakes, which on a GM product is code for open differential. after a tuneup, it runs perfect, and after installing a new stereo system (and bypassing the D.O.A. factory "premium sound" amp), it makes for a cool daily driver.

i have noticed that one of the front brake pads is getting thin, and that rotor is gettin' a nice little groove goin'. i'm also getting a lot of feedback in the brake pedal.

i would like to go with something better than stock - even including a rear drum-to-disc conversion. probelem is, it's a four lug, and i just spent 200 bucks to powdercoat the factory wheels and another 600+ for new tires. who knew it was so hard to find tires for 15 inch wheels :frustrated:

so i would like to keep it a four lug, but am not finding any good options as far as upgrading to any sort of "performance brake system" that doesnt require a conversion to five lugs, which will require new wheels, and possibly new tires as well. it sucks. :frustrated:

anybody have any inside scoop on something that would suit my needs? one single kit would be optimal, like something from Baer or SSBC, but everything i've seen requires a 4 to 5 conversion. would a used, factory brake system from a '93 Cobra work? if so, know where i can get one?

also, where is the damn coolant temperature sending unit located? :headscratch:

thanks

Linson
 

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Stainless Steel Brakes www.SSBrakes.com makes a 4 lug conversion based on the 87-88 T-Bird brakes. It's not a bad unit, just basic stock parts. For the front get Steeda caliper bushings to stop the deflection from the stock rubber ones and replace the calipers w/ '90 Lincoln LSC calipers. They bolt right up and have a bigger swept area on the pads. I would also get Carbon metallic pads on all four wheels. One other thing, I would replace the power booster with a '93 Cobra unit and use the stock M/C if you plan on using the SSBC kit. My brakes are basically all this stuff and it stops on a dime. I've had it for 14 years now with no issues.
 
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you can also upgrade to the svo 73 mm calipers with the cobra booster...

that will put some woah in your pony......
 

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The Turbo Coupe Rear End would be a good choice to stay 4 Lug and it will have 3.55 or 3.73 Gears in it too so you will kill 2 birds with 1 stone. In addition to the Rear Brakes, you can also upgrade the Fronts as Reggie suggested by going with the 73mm Calipers as the 2 together will help.
 

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I have done the turbocoupe rear end swap, and the braking is good. Here's why i no longer recommend it.

1) Emergency brake is absolutely worthless. It makes me so insane that Im going to go to Caddy rear calipers

2) the rear is about 50lbs heavier. Probably some of this could be attributed to the 3.73's compared to the 2.73s from my stocker. The rest must be in the axle length gain of .75" on each side.

3) .75" wider on each side. I run 93 Cobra repro wheels with 275/40/17's and I had to roll the proverbial crap out of the rear fenders to avoid rubbing on even modest bumps.

4) Even though the bearings are in good shape throughout the rear, the rear has a lot of resistance, even without the brakes on it. With the brakes on, my car doesnt roll at all on slight slopes like in my driveway. this may be exclusive to my particular rear, but Im not convinced, because there has simply been no stone unturned.

73mm calipers in the front are a great idea. I would try an aftermarket kit, or the caddy caliper solution as i will be trying soon.

here is a great info site for brakes.

87-93 Mustang 5.0 Brake upgrade pages. Improve your 60-0 times!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
thanks for the info, guys. i really appreciate it. i think that for now, my solution will be to simply fix the existing factory set-up, and then go ahead and do the five lug conversion in the future so i can get everything in one kit - probably the SSBC kit.

wanna see some pics?

Linson's My Cars Photo Album - MySpace Photos
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Stainless Steel Brakes www.SSBrakes.com makes a 4 lug conversion based on the 87-88 T-Bird brakes. It's not a bad unit, just basic stock parts. For the front get Steeda caliper bushings to stop the deflection from the stock rubber ones and replace the calipers w/ '90 Lincoln LSC calipers. They bolt right up and have a bigger swept area on the pads. I would also get Carbon metallic pads on all four wheels. One other thing, I would replace the power booster with a '93 Cobra unit and use the stock M/C if you plan on using the SSBC kit. My brakes are basically all this stuff and it stops on a dime. I've had it for 14 years now with no issues.
what if, instead of the Lincoln LSC stuff, i just went with this: http://www.ssbrakes.com/commerce/images_products/A112-5.jpg

is this not superior to the Lincoln stuff, or is this just the exact same stuff thats already on my car repacaged and marked up?
 
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