We had no trouble installing the brake parts and it's something you can do easily in your driveway in a day.
Once they were installed, we performed the proper bed-in procedure for the pads (we'll cover this in Part II) before we drove home in traffic. Our first impression was the new, great response from the brakes. They really bite now and made a large improvement at the autocross. There was no noticeable fade, even after repeated heavy stops around the track. The ABS system was kept in check and worked well at controlling the more powerful brakes.
Though easy to install, it took nearly 40 photos and captions to show the parts, the install, and the testing, so this story will be presented in two parts. We'll get into the descriptions and the install of the front brakes in Part I and finish up in Part II with the rear brakes and the testing.
The Long Debate: Slotted Vs. Drilled RotorsAll over the internet and at every track, we're sure you've heard the debate about which is better: slotted or drilled. We were sure to bring this topic up with Mark Joseph and John Poulakis at DBA. When our brakes were suggested to us for our application, we weren't the least-bit surprised that they were slotted only.
According to John, slotted is best suited for heavy-duty conditions with high thermal loads. The slots clean the pad face while helping with the outgassing of the pads, and provide more even pad wear with reduced glazing. Drilled or drilled-and-slotted are best suited for improved braking performance under normal driving conditions. "They're not recommended for extreme conditions where there are high thermal loads," he says.
In high-heat conditions, drilled rotors tend to crack or "spider" around the holes. They also reduce the amount of surface area for the heat to dissipate, diminishing their cooling ability. Since our GTO will see heavy autocross and open-track time, it's safe to say that this is a heavy-duty role that will generate a lot of heat. We won't have to worry about any cracks forming and our pad surface will continually be cleaned.