Rear Disk Brake Interchangeability/Differences - TCCoA Forums

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post #1 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-26-2012, 01:30 AM Thread Starter
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Rear Disk Brake Interchangeability/Differences

I recently ran into an expensive problem with a rear disk swap on my 1994 LX and wanted to post this info for anyone else doing the swap.

First, even if you pulled the brakes yourself run the part numbers to verify what you have. There is a difference between 89-92 and 93-97 rear disk brakes. If you use mixed parts your brakes will not work correctly and can cause damage or poorly working brakes. Check the calipers, brackets and rotors, you need them to all be from the same generation. The hubs are the same for all years so as long as you have everything else matching this will make your swap go smoother.

Visual caliper ID; Top grey caliper is from a 1990 SC, Bottom yellow caliper is from a 93+ Bird:




Specs from the Ford Service Manual:

1990 Front disk brakes:
Lining size inner and outer: 144mm x44.6mm x9.7mm (5.7 inches x1.7 inches x0.4 inches)
Lining wear limit: 3.175mm (0.125)
Front rotor nominal thickness: 26.0mm (1.024 inches)
Front rotor minimum thickness: 23.75mm (0.935 inches)
Front rotor diameter: 276mm (10.87 inches)
Caliper cylinder bore diameter: 66mm (2.598 inches)

1990 SC Rear disk brakes:
Lining size inner and outer: 28.5x12.0 (1.5x0.47)
Lining wear limit: 3.12 (0.123)
Rear rotor nominal thickness: 24 (.945)
Rear rotor minimum thickness: 22.75 (0.90)
Rear rotor diameter: inner- 175 (6.89) outer- 258 (10.16)
Caliper cylinder bore diameter: 45.44 (1.79)

1994 Front disk brakes:
Lining wear limit: 1.00mm (0.040 inch)
Front rotor nominal thickness: 26.0mm (1.024 inch)
Front rotor minimum thickness: 24.75mm (0.974 inch)
Front rotor diameter: 276mm (10.87 inch)
Caliper cylinder bore diameter: 66mm (2.598 inch)

1994 Rear disk brakes:
Lining size inner and outer: 99.3 x 38.5 x 12 (3.9 x 1.52 x 0.47)
Lining wear limit: 3.12 (0.123)
Rear rotor nominal thickness: 18 (0.709)
Rear rotor minimum thickness: 16.7 (0.657)
Rear rotor diameter: inner- 172 (6.77) outer- 258 (10.16)
Caliper cylinder bore diameter: 45.44 (1.79)

I included the front disk info in case someone was replacing front brakes and wanted to verify specs.

-Kelly
===================================
Fuelly
94 LX 3.8L NA : Daily Driver. 270k on chassis, 10k on motor.
90 35th Anniversary SC : Stored for the Winter.
Needs Harmonic Balancer, complete suspension overhaul.
WTB: 90 SC BHJ harmonic balancer

Last edited by BlueEyes; 02-02-2012 at 12:34 PM. Reason: Put all of the info in top post.
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post #2 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-26-2012, 12:09 PM
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Wow! That's a lot of confusion. I just swapped an entire rear sub-frame under my Bird that the guy told me came from a 1997 Mark VIII LSC. So when I bought parts (including the brake lines), I just bought for a 97 LSC and haven't had any problems.

My suggestion for you is to use Rockauto to your advantage. Look at the parts you question (whatever vehicle application you choose), click the part number and it will tell you all the vehicles that particular part fits (so you can check calipers/rotors/pads/whatever).

I hope that helps a bit.

~Rick
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post #3 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-26-2012, 12:24 PM Thread Starter
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Yea what messed me up badly was being told the axles and brakes were from a 90 SC because now I know they're not. So I purchased the wrong rotors, thinking I had the right rotors lead me to believe the calipers were bad so then I purchased the wrong calipers. As far as I know as long as I get the 1990 caliper brackets it should all bolt up.

Yes it was my fault for not checking the part numbers on everything before we put them in but I have learned a lot about the brakes on these cars. I did use Rock Auto to figure the info on the brakes plus I have a 1990 and a 1994 service manual that gave me a lot of the specs for the brakes. I have read and had people tell me the brakes were all the same but they're not. It's broken down into 2 different sets for the MN12's; 89-92 and 93-97 for the rear brakes anyways. But since the knuckles are the same 89-97 as long as I have 90 rotors, calipers and brackets it should work.

What a friggin nightmare. I'll never make that mistake again.

-Kelly
===================================
Fuelly
94 LX 3.8L NA : Daily Driver. 270k on chassis, 10k on motor.
90 35th Anniversary SC : Stored for the Winter.
Needs Harmonic Balancer, complete suspension overhaul.
WTB: 90 SC BHJ harmonic balancer
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post #4 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-26-2012, 01:12 PM
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It seems like you only need the newer style rotors if you have the brackets and calipers already - if you swap to the Early style brakes you may need different brake lines which tend to cost the same or more than the late model rotors.
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post #5 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-26-2012, 03:03 PM Thread Starter
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If I would have known about the mix up in parts I would have just bought the newer style rotors and been done with it but it's too late for that. I already have the old style rotors and calipers so I ordered the brackets to match them. I think on the brake line the end that connects to the caliper is the same, it's the hard line end that is different.

EDIT: Just to add; According to Rock Auto the banjo bolt is the same part number for a 1990 SC and a 97 LX rear disk caliper.

-Kelly
===================================
Fuelly
94 LX 3.8L NA : Daily Driver. 270k on chassis, 10k on motor.
90 35th Anniversary SC : Stored for the Winter.
Needs Harmonic Balancer, complete suspension overhaul.
WTB: 90 SC BHJ harmonic balancer

Last edited by BlueEyes; 01-26-2012 at 03:23 PM.
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post #6 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-26-2012, 04:17 PM
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Good point, yeah I think the difference is the size of the fitting that goes into the hardline to the rubber line - so you would want to keep the ones that bolt up to your car.
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post #7 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-26-2012, 06:12 PM Thread Starter
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Well I just hope all this info will be helpful to someone else down the road. the most important lesson I learned was;

Don't take anything for granted, check the part numbers.

-Kelly
===================================
Fuelly
94 LX 3.8L NA : Daily Driver. 270k on chassis, 10k on motor.
90 35th Anniversary SC : Stored for the Winter.
Needs Harmonic Balancer, complete suspension overhaul.
WTB: 90 SC BHJ harmonic balancer
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post #8 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-28-2012, 10:41 PM
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Good info. I think I might have an early caliper with late rotors. Got to check part numbers. Opps.

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post #9 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-29-2012, 09:27 AM
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To reiterate, if you are swapping any rear disc stuff on MN12s, then you need to match all of the pieces ... rotor, caliper, caliper bracket and sliders, and pads.

If you are doing the upgrade to the Cobra 11.65" rear rotors, it is best to use the 93-97 style calipers/brackets/pads, as they more closely match the thickness of the Cobra rotors.


cheers
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post #10 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-29-2012, 09:38 AM Thread Starter
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I finally have all matching parts; rotors/calipers/brackets/pads and were giving it another try today. Should all go together fine now. Ed is right, even the pads are different. I know a few people have told me in the past that it's all the same 89-97 except the rotors but it's not. Today after we swap everything I'll look up the old part numbers and see what was on there. I know I have the newer style caliper brackets because they are identical and not RH/LH.

-Kelly
===================================
Fuelly
94 LX 3.8L NA : Daily Driver. 270k on chassis, 10k on motor.
90 35th Anniversary SC : Stored for the Winter.
Needs Harmonic Balancer, complete suspension overhaul.
WTB: 90 SC BHJ harmonic balancer
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post #11 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-29-2012, 07:52 PM
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Ill second that the early style calipers are not the same as the later style. You can most easily tell with the opening on the top of the caliper. The older style has a bigger opening where an anti rattle clip sometimes get stuck into. But on the later style that top opening smaller, the added metal is toward the outside edge if attached to car you can see its not the same. They arent even the same shape either so its actually hard to mix them up once you get a good look at the 2 side by side. Im so sorry you had to play this game Kelly. I call it WTF avenue.

Spinning pies like wheels.

DD driving my 20 year old project

Now with new ball joints...again
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post #12 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-29-2012, 08:33 PM Thread Starter
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Everything went together this time no problem. Turns out the 90 SC axles and brakes I bought had the 89-92 style brackets and 93+ calipers and rotors. So either someone did a swap that didn't know what they were mixing or the parts got mixed up when everything was disassembled.

It was obvious taking everything apart that the brakes were barely working and weren't lining up right so I was thinking that maybe other people who have had issues where after a rear disk swap they felt the brakes weren't working well and tried changing the proportioning valve which didn't help. Maybe you should check your part numbers and make sure you have the right combination.

-Kelly
===================================
Fuelly
94 LX 3.8L NA : Daily Driver. 270k on chassis, 10k on motor.
90 35th Anniversary SC : Stored for the Winter.
Needs Harmonic Balancer, complete suspension overhaul.
WTB: 90 SC BHJ harmonic balancer
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post #13 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-30-2012, 11:24 AM Thread Starter
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May be a good idea to make this a sticky or at least take the good info out of it and make a sticky that tells what the differences are and urge people to check part numbers. I have the service manuals for the 1990 and the 1994 that has the exact specs for the brakes and shows the difference. I'll post the specs from the manuals when I have a little time. I know I've had people tell me they're all the same 89-97 and read it in posts here and it just isn't correct. I'm willing to bet that the people who have done the rear disk swap and have poorly working brakes afterwards have the same problem I did.

-Kelly
===================================
Fuelly
94 LX 3.8L NA : Daily Driver. 270k on chassis, 10k on motor.
90 35th Anniversary SC : Stored for the Winter.
Needs Harmonic Balancer, complete suspension overhaul.
WTB: 90 SC BHJ harmonic balancer
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post #14 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 10:01 PM
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I checked my calipers tonight and one had a part number on the top of the caliper and the other one didn't, so I'm assuming one of my calipers might be the old style. Ive had them both on the car for a few years now and never had any problems. Does any one have the part numbers for each caliper?

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post #15 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 10:28 PM Thread Starter
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On the rear OEM calipers the part number is on the underside unfortunately. Right under where the piston is. I have some pics I can post tomorrow that shows the difference, you can tell from looking at the top. The early style has a larger opening in the top of the caliper than the later style does. Other than that they look identical. But if you had 2 different styles on the car at the same time I think you would notice the difference.

I drove mine for about 6000 miles with the mixed parts and I didn't have any issues either. But when we took it apart to put the new rotors on it was obvious the brakes weren't working properly. Usually where the pad hits the rotor you'll have a high gloss shine on the rotor. On mine the pads were making contact and leaving a noticeable wear mark but they just never got shiny like the fronts did.

-Kelly
===================================
Fuelly
94 LX 3.8L NA : Daily Driver. 270k on chassis, 10k on motor.
90 35th Anniversary SC : Stored for the Winter.
Needs Harmonic Balancer, complete suspension overhaul.
WTB: 90 SC BHJ harmonic balancer
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post #16 of 38 (permalink) Old 01-31-2012, 10:49 PM Thread Starter
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The grey one is the early style, the yellow one is the later style. You can tell by the opening in the top of the caliper. There are other subtle differences too like around the wording the early style is indented.




-Kelly
===================================
Fuelly
94 LX 3.8L NA : Daily Driver. 270k on chassis, 10k on motor.
90 35th Anniversary SC : Stored for the Winter.
Needs Harmonic Balancer, complete suspension overhaul.
WTB: 90 SC BHJ harmonic balancer
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post #17 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-01-2012, 12:27 AM
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Nice to see others can finally see the difference between the 2 generations without some mysterious blurry pics from service manuals.

The only way this could get better if someone else can take a pic of the gen1 pads and gen2 pads so people dont buy the wrong ones.

Kelly you're now a rear disk expert.

Spinning pies like wheels.

DD driving my 20 year old project

Now with new ball joints...again
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post #18 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-01-2012, 09:30 AM Thread Starter
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Like you said, I didn't notice the difference until we had them side by side. I'm going to post specs later.

-Kelly
===================================
Fuelly
94 LX 3.8L NA : Daily Driver. 270k on chassis, 10k on motor.
90 35th Anniversary SC : Stored for the Winter.
Needs Harmonic Balancer, complete suspension overhaul.
WTB: 90 SC BHJ harmonic balancer
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post #19 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-01-2012, 08:09 PM
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Turns out both of mine are 93+. Thanks for the pics.

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post #20 of 38 (permalink) Old 08-19-2012, 10:58 AM
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so if i had wanted to swap my drum to disc in back ( 96 tbird) id have to use 95-98 brake parts?

Taking time to build it right...
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post #21 of 38 (permalink) Old 08-19-2012, 11:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 96Darkstar4.6 View Post
so if i had wanted to swap my drum to disc in back ( 96 tbird) id have to use 95-98 brake parts?
No, but you have to use all the same year series parts.

I'd recommend 95-98 parts so that you can tell the parts guy "Yah, a 1996 TBird with disc rear brakes", but you don't HAVE to.

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post #22 of 38 (permalink) Old 08-19-2012, 11:01 AM
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Quote:
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No, but you have to use all the same year series parts.

I'd recommend 95-98 parts so that you can tell the parts guy "Yah, a 1996 TBird with disc rear brakes", but you don't HAVE to.

RwP
thanks i was a lil worried about that.. so i get it straight if i use 97 brakes i can tell the guy 96?

Taking time to build it right...
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post #23 of 38 (permalink) Old 08-19-2012, 03:03 PM
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Yep.

Unless you do further upgrading

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post #24 of 38 (permalink) Old 11-07-2012, 01:51 PM
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So what are my options for rear brake upgrades? 89 SC. I will be doing the PBR swap and still considering doing a hub swap. I'm happened to notice the wheel options are greater and more readily available.

Phrum Steve

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post #25 of 38 (permalink) Old 12-03-2012, 08:05 PM
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I am thinking doing the front & rear hub swap to use other wheels. I am not looking to use 17 " wheels.my question is can I just swap the hubs & use the the stock mustang rotors with my stock calipers front & rear.
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post #26 of 38 (permalink) Old 12-03-2012, 09:33 PM
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You can on the front, as the base SN95 rotors are the same size as the base MN12 rotors, but the rear rotor size does not match up.


cheers
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post #27 of 38 (permalink) Old 12-03-2012, 09:34 PM
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For the front, yes, you can use the appropriate stock Mustang rotors. Specifically 99-04 GT/V6 rotors. I'd also put the PBR calipers on, to maximize the benefit, but eh, that's up to you.

For the rear, IIRC, you'll have to either redrill the MN12 rotors, or get relocation brackets to use stock Mustang rotors ... they don't have a standard rotor close enough to our (too small!) size. That's IIRC - someone else may pop in with the proper ones.

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post #28 of 38 (permalink) Old 12-03-2012, 11:57 PM
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But with the larger rotors do we have upgrade options for pads and calipers?

Phrum Steve

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post #29 of 38 (permalink) Old 12-04-2012, 09:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RalphP View Post
For the front, yes, you can use the appropriate stock Mustang rotors. Specifically 99-04 GT/V6 rotors. I'd also put the PBR calipers on, to maximize the benefit, but eh, that's up to you.
Calipers are different, but rotors are the same for 94-04 Mustang on the front.


cheers
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post #30 of 38 (permalink) Old 12-04-2012, 09:16 AM
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Calipers are different, but rotors are the same for 94-04 Mustang on the front.


cheers
Ed
For all of them? Good to note.

I knew the GT/V6 rotors were the same, but thought the Cobras got bigger rotors (13").

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