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Old 04-10-2018, 11:53 PM   #1
60apache
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power vs manual brakes

so far on my truck I have had 2 different power brake setups and now I'm running hydroboost which I hate the look of. I want a cleaner setup and was considering a wilwood manual master. Just asking for you that have went from power to manual how you like it? how different is the pedal feel? what route should I take?
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Old 04-11-2018, 12:28 AM   #2
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Re: power vs manual brakes

I rebuilt the brake system on my 66 c10 awhile ago with a new master cyl, lines, and wheel cyl's ect. Stopped great and not to much effort. That was with a single cup as well. I never had issues and stopping was no problem. Could lock all 4 tires whenever I wanted.
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Old 04-11-2018, 12:31 AM   #3
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Re: power vs manual brakes

I too did not want a booster with my disc/drum set up so I went manual brakes with a '72 c-10 m.c. It works just fine. The pedal feel is similar to a factory drum/drum set up but with the added stopping power of the discs up front.
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Old 04-11-2018, 10:11 AM   #4
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Re: power vs manual brakes

I've never had a problem with manual brakes. I went with a Wilwood MC (no booster), also running their 6-piston calipers on the front.
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Old 04-11-2018, 01:05 PM   #5
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Re: power vs manual brakes

Once you start getting away from the stock brake systems you have to pay attention to master cylinder bore size and caliper piston size. These will determine your braking pressures.

On the master, the smaller bore size will give you more "leverage" and pressure for a given pedal force, but you don't get something for nothing. The smaller bore requires you to push the pedal further.

My 63 is still all manual drums and it is easy to apply enough pressure to lock the brakes. I'm not a proponent that disks make a truck stop faster. Drums will stop the truck just as fast. More important for braking distance will be the grip of your tires.

Disk brakes shine because they can cool better under extreme conditions (towing and racing). They are also lighter, and simpler in operation.
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Old 04-11-2018, 01:40 PM   #6
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Re: power vs manual brakes

I unhooked vac line to booster, I hated the soft peddle, the factory peddle firm is what I like. Course I been in this truck since '98. Manual 3:1 rack as well!
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Old 04-11-2018, 01:54 PM   #7
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Re: power vs manual brakes

I have no issues stopping my truck with 4 wheel drums and manual brakes. I think it helps it's a standard. Stopping and holding the truck against a converter might get your leg tired but that's personal preference. I am swapping in power brakes when I do my engine swap but have considered staying manual just putting disks on the front.
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Old 04-11-2018, 09:58 PM   #8
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Re: power vs manual brakes

I had a 64 C20 LWB and I swapped the stock single master for a stock dual non power 4 wheel drum master from a 67 or 68. Bolted right in and bore size was the same since both were 4 wheel drum C20s. Youll have to do a little research but I believe 67 or 68 was the last year you could get front drums and the first year for the dual master cylinder. The 64 stopped great and didnt require super human strength on the pedal.
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Old 04-12-2018, 12:41 AM   #9
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Re: power vs manual brakes

Swapped out the stock drums in my old 66 C10 for manual disks from a late 70's C20 and it stopped great. This was a truck that worked very hard for a living, and had no trouble stopping when fully loaded. I personally like the simplicity and reliability of manual brakes and have never had a problem.
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Old 04-12-2018, 10:57 PM   #10
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Re: power vs manual brakes

my truck is 4 wheel disc, so I'm really wanting to hear from people that have 4 wheel disc that have swapped from power to manual what they think?
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Old 04-13-2018, 10:51 AM   #11
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Re: power vs manual brakes

Unplug the vacuum line... that's manual.4 wheel disk Brakes don't mater its the peddle power. If you did not modify peddle swing then the peddle will give same affect if line is disconnected.
The truck is going to stop the same pwr no pwr. Its the effort you apply to brake peddle...
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Old 04-20-2018, 10:27 PM   #12
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Re: power vs manual brakes

Quote:
Originally Posted by LVPhotos View Post
Unplug the vacuum line... that's manual.4 wheel disk Brakes don't mater its the peddle power. If you did not modify peddle swing then the peddle will give same affect if line is disconnected.
The truck is going to stop the same pwr no pwr. Its the effort you apply to brake peddle...
I actually have hydroboost at the moment so I cant do that.
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Old 04-21-2018, 10:32 AM   #13
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Re: power vs manual brakes

I am no expert...but I have been talking to willwood about it a little. I am dumb and just don't like the booster hanging off the firewall. Anyway, the big thing is the master cylinder diameter. So power brakes have larger diameters. Something to do with volume and pressure lol. So more volume less pressure. More pressure less volume . Let's see...for me after I sent them all the volumes of cylinders in the system and I said I wanted a medium feel peddle, they recommended a size master. So a power master with no booster isn't going to feel or work like a Manuel master at all. The smaller the master the harder the peddle feel and so on and so forth until you get so big that it isn't going to be practical. I don't want a brake system that you have to stand on to stop and told them I wanted my 106lb wife to be able to stop it with ease. They assured me with the right size master rated to the volume of the system that it would not be noticeable. That is of course with a completely functioning system. Willwood was very helpful and did all the math and it is what they do so I trust them..? So the good news is a manual master will bolt right up and the stock rod will operate it and if you don't like it you haven't altered anything and can change back. Some work but better than not liking a transmission or cam or the color you painted your truck lol. So this is just a reference point for you. 7/8 manual master may have a very hard feel..1 1/8 inch soft..i bought a 15/16 th and will keep my other stuff just in case lol. I would call them with the brake caliper cylinder size info and the peddle ratio and they will give you all the options for manual and power and refrence the peddle feel/stopping power. Hope this helps
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Old 04-21-2018, 01:04 PM   #14
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Re: power vs manual brakes

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Originally Posted by Pinchecharlie View Post
... 7/8 manual master may have a very hard feel..1 1/8 inch soft..i bought a 15/16 th a...
Not the other way around?
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Old 04-21-2018, 04:36 PM   #15
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Re: power vs manual brakes

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Originally Posted by The Rocknrod View Post
Not the other way around?
Oh jeez , now I am scared I didn't pay attention! Those sizes and feel where for manual masters. So a small manual master will get hard fast and feel like more effort and as you get bigger get softer/go down farther. A 7/8 master with booster will be dangerously touchy and as you go up in size will get softer and require less effort. Right? So my power boosted master from cpp was an inch and 1/8 with a 10 inch booster. My manual booster is 15/16 and will according to willwood have the same effort as the power but at 1/2 peddle travel. Now i remeber that's how they design them! amount of force applied at peddle=x amount of line pressure in x amount of leg force and peddle throw!
That's the worst attempt at a math problem ever ha ha ha!!! So according to them you can with caliper cylinder size/master size/peddle ratio, match any combination of effort and pressure manually or boosted but you will reach it at different peddle travel and or peddle effort. They base them off 100lbs of foot effort after the mechanicle leverage designed by peddle ratio (I assume there is some multiplication of force due to ratio?). So I guess they engineer the peddle ratio around that (or you could)..I think that's what he said lol!!!!! O crap its in wilwoods faqs ! Only problem with any and all of this is that the calipers are designed around Iine pressure to brake x amount of weight in x amount of time with x amount of peddle force. So now as this equation evolves I am assuming the choices become limited. If I am having a drug induced flash back and have this ALL WRONG please correct me!
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Old 04-21-2018, 06:40 PM   #16
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Re: power vs manual brakes

My truck is still single line, non-boosted master cylinder. Carbureted. Points ignition. Drum brakes. Manual transmission. 6 cylinder.
With changes to the GM engineers specifications come problems. No way around it.
Part of the game.
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Old 04-21-2018, 09:44 PM   #17
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Re: power vs manual brakes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pinchecharlie View Post
Oh jeez , now I am scared I didn't pay attention!
A smaller master will have a softer pedal, but greater pressure at the wheels.

A larger wheel cylinder/caliper will have a softer pedal, but greater pressure at the wheels.

Guaranteed. No foolin'.
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Last edited by SkinnyG; 04-23-2018 at 08:13 PM. Reason: I might have been drunk?
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Old 04-23-2018, 12:56 PM   #18
60apache
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Re: power vs manual brakes

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Originally Posted by vin63 View Post
I've never had a problem with manual brakes. I went with a Wilwood MC (no booster), also running their 6-piston calipers on the front.
I'm thinking this is the route I'm going to take. Did you do anything special to mount it? like a bracket, or just bolt it up to firewall?
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Old 04-23-2018, 08:14 PM   #19
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Re: power vs manual brakes

Oh crap. I screwed up my post, guaranteed, no fooling. I corrected it.

It should have said (and now does say) a SMALLER master produces a smaller pedal, but greater pressure at the wheels.

I suck.
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