Feedback from current and former TCE customers
Great story from a long ago customer.....
You put together a set of Brakes for my '95 Impala SS back in, I think, 1996-97. I'm pretty sure this was the first set you developed.
What I wanted to share with you was this - that original set of calipers is still on the car. What makes that remarkable is that they have lasted more than 15 years, but more importantly, the calipers have more than 300,000 miles on them. I went through a set of rotors only because I let the pad's rivets dig a groove in them; otherwise, they've been equally indestructible.
Anyway, I think the money I spent on this kit is the best money I ever spent on a car. I just wanted to let you know how pleased I am with the kit.
I have the TCE kit that uses the Wilwood calipers...It's amazing. I have driven the piss out of it and have never even come close to fading the brakes. Big brakes are one of the nicest mods to have for looks and performance. Just remember... just because you can stop faster now, doesn't mean the guy riding your ass can!
Impressive. In a nutshell the car stops HARD. Four days after the system was installed I had a 2 day race school where I put on 200 or so racing miles. I quickly found the brakes to be easy to modulate, the master cylinder/caliper bore size ratio is well chosen, no harder then stock to modulate but way more effective. You can lock them instantly but the slightest back off twitch of the calf will get you rolling again. Good stuff. On the track the brakes were nothing short of extremely impressive. I am pleased to report that despite my best effort, I could not even fade the 'E' compound pads. I did smell the brakes after blowing a braking zone once. After 200 racing miles the visible outside pads showed literally no appreciable wear. Amazing. I have no idea how long the pads will last but if that’s how they are going to wear I may never have to buy another set!
Driving impressions: I'm very pleased with the pedal. Very high, very firm. I like it! My fears about a long pedal, or caliper flex were completely unfounded. Todd showed his expertise in picking a great caliper bore! The brakes are very easy to modulate! I don't find them "touchy" at all. You can probably hit 80% braking force very easy, just ‘boom’, then start feeling for the upper limit. If you go too far and lock them up, it's really easy to let off. You just reduce pedal pressure, and they release and you can instantly find the 100% zone. This is because the pedal doesn't actually MOVE. Your foot is playing with PRESSURE, and not distance. This will greatly improve my lap times.
I've had the TCE Wilwood brake upgrade on my truck for a few months now, but due to a lingering and nagging brake problem, I haven't had the chance to really see what they're capable of. ...That left only one component - the RABS valve - which I replaced yesterday and voila! Brakes are back to normal! So, I took the truck out and really pounded on the brakes. The best word I have to describe them is "phenomenal!" Repeated 80-100 mph down to 20 mph stops showed no signs of fade or distortion. And they stop like arresting hooks! I don't think I could possibly be happier with this arrangement and with the performance of the truck. So, for those of you looking for a serious hardware upgrade, this one really fills the bill!!
If I was to start fresh on brakes, I probably would have gone with the TCE kit. Another nice thing about the TCE kit is that it contains great parts that are way cheaper to service than either Brembo or AP.
I put Todd’s setup on my truck approximately 1 month ago and everything fit perfectly. Todd took the time to mock up the brake setup with my 03 wheel and found out we did not need the spacer. I have not been to the track yet but I will soon. One other thing the brake system weighs in 10 lbs lighter per each wheel. Yes I weighed all the parts. Thanks Todd your attn. to detail and going the extra mile to help me out speaks volumes for your company’s customer service
My son and I both ran my truck at the same track event. The run sessions are 20 minutes long. He would run a session then the truck would sit for 20 minutes, then I would run a session. We did this for two days so the truck was run for 16 20 minute sessions in two days. I went through half a set of J pads and took over .100" off the rotors. We never experienced a bit of fade. You could smell the brakes and they were hot as hell but I was still running stock brake fluid and had absolutely no problems. I know there are tracks that are harder on brakes than Texas World and Motor Sport Ranch but at these two tracks the TCE kit has been flawless.
For those that got a chance to take a quick test run in my car this weekend as much as they all loved the power, they were equally impressed with the TCE brakes. 12.2" kit up front and the rear upgrades haul the car down from 80 mph in no time. With no passengers in the car it felt as if the rear end wanted to lift. Todd; thanks for a great setup and this was without the track pads being installed!
Q: They (BRAND X) apparently make the 328mm ones for the Ford Focus. So, since it's already a 4x108 pattern, one has to ask the question; would it bolt up to a Contour? It's $2499, I would get a custom AP 6 piston setup for that much, but still, curious to see what y'all thought. ….
A: I just got a 13" Wilwood 6 "POT" from Todd at TCE about a month ago...with the rear upgrade it only came in at $1,700. $2,400 seems rather pricey for a "modify to fit kit".
We recently installed a brake kit from TCE. WOW! What a difference. My daughter and I pounded the crap out of that SRT-4 all day at Firebird east track and could not get those brakes to yield! I have 20 years of experience on road courses with cars from showroom stock to five years in GT-1 so I know how. These brakes define the difference between road iron and race craft. Todd is great to work with and shows a lot of interest in the success of the project. I shopped around and found other systems with the same type of equipment but at almost twice the price. There were six race prepped Mini Coopers with Stoptech kits and none of them could out brake the srt-4! We also have another SRT-4 we are prepping with a full AGP kit, complete roll cage and all the carbon fiber we can stand and this car will have TCE brake kit also
I broke these things in for a few hundred miles and then went testing them. I have never had 4 piston brakes so coming from stock warped rotors and almost no brake pads. This is a huge difference. The pedal feels very direct and no mushy braking at all. I’ve never driven a car that has the brake feel like these do. I went with the 12.2 Rotors so for any reason I ever put my 16" wheels back on. These brakes were $1260.00. So compared to any other brake kit out there for the money this is definitely ‘it’. Aside of braking power they really compliment a set of rims and look good rolling you can read the Wilwood across them. I thought after reading up on brakes for 6 months that i knew it all but Todd educated me further about some things. These brakes are worth every penny.
Q: What’s the best bang for your buck in terms of a 4 piston kit and one that upgrades the back as well? My rotors are shot as well as my pads... so I might as well do all 4 at once. My car is 80% track and 20% joyrides on the street...
A: TCE. Hands down. For the price of front + rear, you can only get a front kit from Stoptech. That's a hard deal to beat. The only thing I'm not sure about are the Wilwood calipers. They don't have dust seals and may require a little maintenance. I've heard both arguments for and against dust seals. Oh yeah... I think Todd's rotors cost less than Stoptech or Baer and are probably just as good if not better. Another good thing to consider; because further down the road, you don't want to get ding'ed too bad when it comes time to replace the rotors for your big brake kit. (ed. Note: all TCE rotors are cast in the USA, not Mexico as some are)
I've had the TCE Performance Wilwood 13.1" x 1.1" rotor / 6-piston caliper "Street Sport" kit on for about 2 weeks / 600 miles now. In my mind, this brake upgrade has to be a top performance enhancement. Pics don’t do them justice. The look just kills people. With the OEM setup, the couple of times I had to stand on the brakes in an emergency stop left me feeling like I couldn't judge where the MM would wind up at. The pedal is now much firmer. Once I got used to the feel, I've learned I have plenty of control. These bad boys add a ton of stopping power and the anti-lock system kicks in right when I think they should. Upgrading the front brakes has been the best money spent so far...
In short, WOW! My Marauder stops like a Indy car. Todd custom fit me a set of 14" rotors and Wilwood 6 piston calipers and I couldn't be happier with the results. I love the polished Baer's, but am really sold on the 6 piston Wilwoods...
Q: What are your impressions of them?
A: I have TCE race kit (serious 4-piston forged calipers, 12.2" dia. rotors) on the front. My evaluation in one word: fantastic. I test-fitted the TCE street kit and everything was just as well built. The kit comes with front stainless hoses. I did look into Baer's kit, but did not want their C-4 Corvette caliper with its two pistons on the same side of the rotor (just like the stock GVR4 caliper.)
You can't ask for a faster access to change brake pads; 4 minutes per side of car!!! I have never had higher level of customer support on ANY purchase. Lots lighter. The FSL is considerably lighter in weight than stock.
I went with the TCE (Wilwood) 6 piston kit. All I can say is WOW!!! Very good pedal feel (VERY firm) and you will stop in a hurry. You won't be disappointed.
Seriously you should call Todd at TCE he will take very good care of you, believe me. And the big old Wilwoods look sicccck. People on this site saw my car last weekend they can back me on what they look like. Oh yea they stop ya too! Baer doesn’t even make a rear kit for our cars. Can’t say anything bad about TCE.
TCE Wilwood 4-piston kit: best bang-for-the-buck if you want both better brakes AND improved pedal feel.
I have the front and rear kit from Todd on my 96ss I love them
I've been very happy with my TCE Wilwood kit. The Baer GT kit is also good, with some disadvantages and advantages compared to the TCE kit. Both of those kits use upgraded calipers and will require 17" wheels- stock SS wheels fit great.
Excellent choice. I've had mine for quite a few months now and they perform great on the street and at the track.
I have the Wilwoods and love them. I do all day track events every couple months and these brakes handle the heat great. Brembo is the king of brakes but I can’t afford them and Wilwood has been making racing brakes for years. I don’t know squat about Rotora. As far as booted pistons the Wilwoods don’t have them but it hasn’t been a problem for me.
LANCIA SCORPION BIG BRAKE CONVERSION
Hey Todd; It is complete and I have to say it is totally awesome!!
I have driven the Lancia a few times now and am starting to really get the feel for the fantastic way it stops. The pedal travel is just a tiny bit shorter than stock which was pretty much what you had said after doing the calcs. Awesome!! As a side benefit, it puts the brake pedal in the perfect location for heel and tow down shifting. I will take it!
The bias feels much better with a little more real stopping effort on the rear. I will still lock the fronts first which I am happy with but the still overall stopping is awesome. The part that makes all of so much better is I now have the ability to modulate the brakes that was so difficult with the 9" rotors. That gives a much more confident feeling as I near the threshold. That alone has made the effort worth it. I ended up not needing any of the shims as everything lined up perfectly during the install.
Thanks for your efforts and taking the time to get the right parts that performed the way I hoped and in a few ways even better. I truly appreciate your efforts!!