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Old 05-06-2011, 06:03 AM   #1
mcmlxix
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D60 Front Brake Upgrade

I'm going to document my attempt at "upgrading" the front brakes on my GM Dana 60 front axle. It all started with the rear axle of the 72 Blazer needing help. It needs a new carrier as the stock one it trashed... rather than just rebuild I decided to GO BIG.... So I found a late model 14BFF from a 2004 GMC 2500HD Duramax... It’s actually an AAM 14 bolt with an 11.5" ring gear and factory disc brakes with drum in hat e-brake. It uses a dual piston caliper which brings me to my upgrade....

I picked up a Dana 60 to match the 14BFF rear. The BOM on the D60 reads a SRW built in 1982 with 4.10 gears and open diff. The plan is to use the front dual piston calipers that would have come on the 2004 GMC and capitalize on the GM engineering. The factory rotor diameter was 12.87" w/ 1.54 thicknesses. The 04 GMC rotor diameter is 12.79" w/ 1.5" thickness.... And I chose to go with a 2009 Dodge 3500 rotor that’s diameter measures 14.18" w/ 1.54" thickness. (Go Big or Go Home, right?) I hope the 4 hundredths doesn’t kill the fitment of the GMC caliper over the Dodge rotor....

I had the factory D60 hubs outer edge machined down about a 1\16" so it fits inside the rotor. It now slips over the hub, rather then being held on the back with the pressed in wheel studs. I will need to figure out new studs. I picked up a used caliper off eBay and it should be here 5/11/11. I will need to make a bracket to mount the caliper. I hope to accomplish this without needing bends or offsets. I won't know till I get the caliper. If all this fails the only permanent mod was machining the hub which will not cause any issues if I need to return to the stock configuration...

I plan to upgrade to Hydroboost and use the Hydro/MC combo from the 2004 GMC. This again capitalizes on the GM engineering, matching the calipers to the master cylinder (MC.)

I'll post pics shortly.... edit: added pics

So here is the rotor on the hub. No wheels studs, just some bolts holding it in place.



Here is a side shot. Shows the space left for the caliper bracket...

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Last edited by mcmlxix; 05-07-2011 at 01:54 AM. Reason: added pics
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Old 05-06-2011, 06:21 AM   #2
70chevyolbetty
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

How much did u get the Dana 60 for?
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Old 05-06-2011, 08:19 AM   #3
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

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How much did u get the Dana 60 for?
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$900 - upgraded to 35 slpine stub axles, rebuilt outters with new Warn hubs (for the stubs)
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Old 05-06-2011, 08:33 AM   #4
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

Cool!
Smokin deal on the 60 with thoes upgrades.
Keep us posted
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Old 05-07-2011, 01:46 AM   #5
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

Here are some comparison pics of the two rotors.
Factory D60 and 09 Dodge 3500....







Here is a pic of the caliper from eBay... I think its bigger then it looks in the pic...
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Old 05-08-2011, 10:12 AM   #6
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

I am subscribed, love to see how this one comes out. I have done the 73-87 3/4 ton caliper conversion to run 15" rims and it turned out great.
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Old 05-11-2011, 10:05 PM   #7
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

I'd like to subscibe to this thread also, but I'm not sure how to do that. Anyway, this is a great thread, please keep up updated as to the parts, and progress or the project.
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Old 05-12-2011, 12:18 AM   #8
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

OK. So here are a few more pics to show the size of the new caliper vs. the old single piston caliper. I also did a quick test fit and I'm not sure it will work with the larger Dodge rotor. I need more offset so I'm going to try a late model Chevy rotor. I need some one with a waterjet who can cut out a bracket... anyone???







I may be able to modify the factory bracket, but I dont want to trash my originals becasue IF this whole idea fails, I need to go back to stock brakes....
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Old 05-25-2011, 10:23 PM   #9
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

Any updates?
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Old 05-26-2011, 12:17 AM   #10
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

Not really.... I got a spare factory bracket two days ago and started to cut and modify. It looks like there are some interference issues. I had exchanged the Dodge rotor for a Chevy rotor because the offset was too deep to use with the factory bracket. I have since picked up another Dodge rotor so I have both to check fitment. I have also ordered a 2009 Dodge 2500/3500 caliper. The Chevy caliper does not fit the Dodge rotor because of overall diameter.... Right now I need some one to waterjet or CNC cut a 3/8" straight bracket...

Here is the factory bracket with one of the ears cut off...



Here is the Chevy rotor and caliper bracket ....





I did pick up a Astro/Safari Hydroboost unit as well as one from a 2005 GMC 3500 truck. I am glad to report that they are interchangable between the two as far as mounting goes. One difference is the Astro has a single keyway where the newer unit has dual keyways. The Astro also has a smaller diameter hole for the master cylinder compared to the GMC 3500. The Astro HB shold support the late 70's Corvette MC for disc/disc brakes. I am using the 05 hydroboost w/ MC and have the Astro/Safari unit in the For Sale section. My goal was to establish if CaptainFab's brackets will work on the newer hydra boost and it does....

Here is a link to the CaptainFab bracket... CLICK HERE


here is a pic of the Astro/Safari hydroboost

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Old 05-27-2011, 02:16 AM   #11
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

Here is the mock up of the caliper bracket. This is about 12" diameter and I decided to start with a 9" diameter.... You can also see where I had the hubs turned to fit inside the rotors.






Here are the two rotors next to each other. 2009 GMC on the left and 2009 Dodge on the right....




and finally here is my 2005 GMC Hydroboost and MC....





.
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Old 05-27-2011, 09:42 AM   #12
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

Keep up the good work
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Old 05-28-2011, 01:57 AM   #13
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

Well I was planning on running H2 wheels... but I'm not 100% sure they'll fit ... may have to upgrade to 18's ...

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Old 05-28-2011, 12:40 PM   #14
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

In regards to wheel studs, I've had great luck going to Dorman's website and downloading their pdf catalogs and comparing all of their studs. You can look at length, shoulder length, knurl diameter, etc. It takes a little time but....

Good luck!
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Old 05-28-2011, 09:27 PM   #15
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

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Originally Posted by mcmlxix View Post
Well I was planning on running H2 wheels... but I'm not 100% sure they'll fit ... may have to upgrade to 18's ...

That is plenty of room! When I was running 3/4 ton brakes on my 60 with 15" rims, you couldn't even slide a key flat between the rim and caliper. This was after the calipers had been attacked by my grinder.
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Old 06-04-2011, 01:19 AM   #16
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

OK... Got my CaptainFab booster bracket to mount my HydroBoost... Vaccum packed for freshness....





I did get my Dodge caliper form the junk yard but I didnt take a pic... It does fit the H2 rim when placed inside so I feel pretty good about that. I'm just waiting on the waterjet guy to cut my bracket....
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Old 06-04-2011, 01:24 AM   #17
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

interested to see how this all works out.
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Old 06-14-2011, 05:30 AM   #18
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

OK.. so I made some progress... I had my bracket turned down to clear the interference with the rotor. I then trimmed the bracket to clear the caliper abutment.... now all I need is a piece (actually one top and one bottom) to connect my bracket to the caliper... I'm soooooooo close.... slip on 14" rotors and twin piston caliper that should fit inside a 17" Hummer H2 wheel.....

Bracket in place, front view ....



Back view...



Trimmed the bracket and shaved the spindle. Mounted rotor to check clearance....



Slid caliper in place on the rotor, back view....




Top view ....



Front view .....

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Old 06-14-2011, 05:32 PM   #19
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

Love it!
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Old 06-16-2011, 10:30 PM   #20
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

good work!! i may be coming back to this when i do my brakes!!
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Old 06-19-2011, 05:46 PM   #21
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

OK. Left my cardboard templates and the parts with the waterjet guy... I made some design changes, and hope to be able to reproduce these brackets if needed... If all works well, they should be for left or right until assembled/welded. No pics... could have some of the templates, but forgot... tune in next weekend for the results....
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Old 06-20-2011, 11:27 PM   #22
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

So, you are using the Dodge caliper and rotor?
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Old 06-21-2011, 12:19 AM   #23
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

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So, you are using the Dodge caliper and rotor?
Yes, both are from the Dodge. The Chevy rotor was about the same diameter as the original D60 rotor but the shape of the caliper abutment combined with the smaller diameter rotor caused interference with the knuckle. Besides, bigger is better; right?
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Old 06-26-2011, 01:56 PM   #24
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

So you were able to use the Dodge rotor with a deeper offset once you had a 3/8"thick flat (or straight) caliper bracket machined, correct? And as you answered an earlier question, the dodge caliper was used also. I'm not too familiar with newer truck braking systems, but what about a proportioning valve? I'm really interested in this brake upgrade, it's exactly what I'm looking to do, but my truck is more of a street driver/tow rig.
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Old 06-26-2011, 06:07 PM   #25
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Re: D60 Front Brake Upgrade

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So you were able to use the Dodge rotor with a deeper offset once you had a 3/8"thick flat (or straight) caliper bracket machined, correct? And as you answered an earlier question, the dodge caliper was used also. I'm not too familiar with newer truck braking systems, but what about a proportioning valve? I'm really interested in this brake upgrade, it's exactly what I'm looking to do, but my truck is more of a street driver/tow rig.
The 3/8 bracket with the Dodge rotor only has a few thousandths of interference.....

I havent figured out the rest of the braking system yet. I will probably need an adjustable proportioning valve to tune rear bias. The MC only has two ports so I will need a distribution block or a T block for the front. I'm not sure what would have been used in the 2005 GMC from the facotry. Fisrst step, and the reason for this thread, was to see if I can get the parts mounted to the D60. I hope to see the brackets on Monday and have it machined this week coming up....
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