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jamyers 02-28-2019 06:12 PM

My Drum-2-Disc Kits Comparison
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So we're going to convert the power drum front brakes on our '69 C10 to disc, having recently replaced all the ball joints, tie rod ends, control arm bushings, etc on the front end.

I'm cross-posting this from my "Build Thread" here, as I'm thinking this would be a better place to discuss the different kits themselves. However, if anybody has any suggestions for our project, feel free to chime in over there.


Looking on the interwebs, I found front brake conversion kits from CPP, Early Classic, Suspension Superstore, Auto City Classics, Pirate Jack, and Scarebird.

A couple of things jump out:

* I think of everything but the Scarebird kit (actually a bracket, bearing spacers, nuts and bolts) as a "Complete Kit", and the Scarebird as a "Get-It-Myself Kit", since everything but the Scarebird route includes all major hardware (rotors, pads, calipers, hoses, etc). Going the Scarebird route means I have to source all that myself, which doesn't bother me since I can shop it around and then I'll be sure to have good part numbers to put in the glove box for years to come.

* Everybody but Scarebird wants to swap out the '69 (67'72?) spindles, which means different ball joints. Fine if you're going to replace them anyways, but we just put new ones in a month ago and I'm not wanting to go back in and pop them all loose again, possibly tearing rubber boots, etc.

* All the "Complete kits" say that they use OEM parts for everything but the spindle, EXCEPT the CPP kit, which makes you captive to their hub/rotor p/n CP4R-6. I poked around the interwebs and couldn't find any cross refs, and I do NOT want to be stuck having to order parts from ONE source in 5, 10, or 15 years from now. So CPP is out.

* Several kits include or have available power boosters, master cylinders, and prop valves of different designs (8" vs. 11" boosters, etc), but I've already got a good GM booster, and can get a GM master cylinder just about anywhere, so those kits don't hold much appeal for me.


the best "Complete Kit" deal looks like the Auto City Classics kit (spindle swap) at $500, then either +$200 for M/C+Booster+PropValve or shop a M/C and valve for $ $650-700 and everything comes in one box

We really didn't want to pop the ball joints loose again (possibly ruining the rubber boots) and swap spindles, so we went Scarebird, and got everything (except brake fluid and maybe dust caps) sitting in the garage for a total of $635.15.

jamyers 02-28-2019 06:16 PM

Re: My Drum-2-Disc Kits Comparison
1 Attachment(s)
Shopping for parts:

EDIT: Mark at Scarebird indicated that they may be changing this kit in the future, in order to accomodate the drum-brake wheels. He also asked me not to post their kit instrustions online, because they don't want to be getting questions in the future about an old kit that's been updated.

So... ANY PART NUMBERS or INSTRUCTIONS BELOW MAY WELL CHANGE, so PLEASE do NOT go emailing Scarebird a year from now asking questions based on the kit and part numbers I have here.

That said, I'm sure the nice folks at Scarebird would be glad to answer any other questions you might have


Scarebird was nice enough to email the kit instructions and part list before I ordered, so I shopped the individual parts at NAPA, O'Reilly, Summit, and RockAuto. Results are shown in the .jpg below.

Took some time to compare parts across vendors, plus compare things like Calipers that included Pads vs Calipers and Pads separately, but it was freezing outside and it kept me out of the pool halls and bingo parlors, lol.

Ended up ordering Calipers and Pads separately, saving about $20 and ensuring that I get Raybestos' premium EHT pads, which some compare to the EBC GreenStuff 6000 series. Who knows if that's a good comparison, I likely never will. Just having discs should be worlds ahead anyways.

Tweaking the orders between Summit and Rockauto to minimize RockAuto's shipping cost, plus I ordered some parts for another vehicle put me over Summit's "$100 gets you free shipping" threshhold, and we're getting all good quality parts (Raybestos, SKF, National, etc). No Cardone or Dura-crap parts anywhere.

The only thing I don't have ordered yet is the dust caps, there is some question if the old ones will fit. At worst they'll run me $4 each.

Exact cost so far is:
Scarebird kit = $209.95 shipped
RockAuto = $246.26 shipped
Summit = $178.94 shipped
Total = $635.15

Ain't bad, considering premium quality parts and we don't have to screw around with ball joints, tie rods, or another alignment.

jamyers 02-28-2019 06:27 PM

Re: My Drum-2-Disc Kits Comparison
I'd also like to highlight something from above:

Mark at Scarebird told me that their current design fit inside the original wheels on a '66 bread truck, but that "we have heard of issues of other rims not clearing." So...

Scarebird might be modifying their setup to be sure and fit the early 3-nub drum brake 6-lug wheels. I've told them that I think they'd have a real winner if they could do that, as I've seen quite a few posts here by folks wanting to keep their existing wheels.

If you're interested, you might drop them a note encouraging them in that direction.

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