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C6 Corvette brake caliper failure
4/4/2016 11:57:05 AM

This is the inside of the driver's side front wheel from my black C7 Corvette. During a session at Sebring in early March I noticed that the car seemed to be pulling to the left under hard braking. It felt like one side was gripping earlier than the other. We went over the car in the pits several times as the pulling got worse and was now accompanied by a vibration. The pads and rotors seemed fine. Eventually the problem got severe enough that in the braking zone of Turn 7, the hairpin or hotel turn, it pulled me left onto the grass and into a spin. Fortunately I spun in the runoff and didn't hit anything.

Back in the pits we pulled the wheel and found this. We also found the middle caliper bolt (of 3) had backed out of it's socket. This caused both the problems: the loose bolt deeply scored the inside of the rim and produced the vibration, while the loose caliper caused the uneven brake action that led to the spin.

A photo of the wheel is in the Wrecks and other Badness section.

Evo X is now ex
10/10/2012 8:39:20 AM
These crash photos are my Evo X. I was on my way to Sebring for a race weekend where I planned to use a rented race Miata, when I spun on a wet road. I was moving backward at perhaps 50-60 mph when I struck a Chevy Suburban on the driver's side with my rear end. As you can see everything from the rear window backward ws demolished. I smacked my head and wound up with a goose egg and a black eye but was otherwise fine. I am gratefull I had buckled into my 5-point  racing harness. The insurance company declared it a total, but they did credit me for the upgrades and the settlement was very reasonable.
Brakes and Tires
7/11/2012 7:46:53 AM
Going into Turn 2 at Sebring, I was rudely surprised to find that I had no brakes; I mean pedal to the floor with no resistance. I put both feet in, downshifted, aimed for the grass and let the clutch out again. I did a major spin on the track and wound up on the grass without hitting anything. I got the car back to the paddock under its own power at 2 mph and Jim Blaisdell, my instructor, got it up on jackstands and pulled the wheels off. By "we" I mean Jim worked and I followed instructions. We found the inner brake pad from the R front was compeletly missing, backing and all. Jim's driving partner George Munson figured out that rear rotors had been installed on the front wheels. The rear rotors are single layer and much thinner than the double layer front rotors and this allowed enough room for the pad to fall out. I had changed pads and rotors at the track on my previous track day and was feeling proud of myself. Now I am just very embarrassed.
Jim and I drove the two afternoon sessions and the tires felt a little flat spotted but behaved well and the last session was the best of the weekend. It turns out that the tires were a little more than flat spotted. Pictures of the tires are in the Track Cars photo gallery. Three of the tires were flatted but the right front was not only flat spotted, but worn down through the steel belts into the "carcass" of the tire, the yellow stuff. I didn't even find that out until I got home. I don't know why it didn't blow out. I emailed Jim about it and he replied that we were "two lucky bums".
3 items total

July, 2012
October, 2012
April, 2016
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