5250 High Performance Dyno Shop Blog

Colorado Drift Car Build | Understand Drifting Brakes - why this matters

[fa icon="calendar"] Aug 6, 2015 11:00:00 AM / by Mike Wiener

 drift_carEver see a car with a second set of rear brake calipers? Factory part or added later, Sometimes its just a separate parking brake, but sometimes it's much more fun than that. 

If you've ever driven a car with a hand operated parking brake, you've probably found at some point the easiest way to initiate a drift is to pull that lever and lock the rear brakes up. Instant glorious drifting bliss, unless you are headed into a curb. 

drift_brake_leverOnce you get onto a legitimate drifting course, you'll quickly find out that the factory parking brake just isn't up to the task of repeatedly holding / grabbing the rear wheels still while moving at 60mph. This is the fact that those parts weren’t meant for that level of use.  The parking brake cable stretches and the brake shoes quickly melt.

  • Adding Drifting Brakes | When you step up to the right parts, you are on your way to improved driving. You do want to become proficient at this, don’t you?

The solution is an independent hydraulic brake system for the rear wheels. On many dedicated racing cars this can be achieved by simply tying into the existing hydraulic brake system so that when you pull the lever, only the rear brakes are affected.  

This can be an issue on some newer cars and cars with certain types of Anti Lock Braking systems. The computer becomes confused and can lock up individual wheels unexpectedly. 

driftingthe Drift Car Build | The only way to get around such systems is to bypass them and add parts that are built for your drifting desire. 

The simplest way to do this is to add a second disc brake caliper to the rear wheels. This second caliper is connected only to the hand brake in the cabin. As far as the ABS system is concerned, all is well.

Our fabrication guys know how to build a custom system for effective operation, including how to get that large lever installed in the cockpit without tearing up the interior.

  • In the event of a primary brake failure, a standard cable operated parking brake is barely capable of bringing a car from 60 mph to a stop. Trying to use the cable operated brake more than a few times will result in smoke billowing out of the factory brakes.

rear_drifting_brakes-812485-editedThis secondary hydraulic system on the rear brakes is more than capable of bringing the vehicle to a stop several times and could be used to limp a race car across the finish line in the event of a primary brake failure.

Building Drift Car | We offer many fabrication services that bring your driving to the next level, so 'How do you want to drive?'

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On the drifting course, the secondary hydraulic system can handle the abuse of being applied while the throttle is open all the way. By removing the slack of the cable, the driver can better feel the edge of traction with the rear wheels. 

Make sure then when you add performance parts to your car you go beyond the simplified information from forum etc. Talk with the experts who actually build high performance. It's your money and your car. Do it right.

Topics: Drift Car Build

Mike Wiener

Written by Mike Wiener