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 Post subject: Antone upgraded brakes?
PostPosted: August 18th, 2017, 2:50 pm 
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Joined: August 3rd, 2014, 3:05 pm
Posts: 39
Just wondering if anyone has upgraded their brakes?

Even though mine are always in good shape they are much less powerful than I would like. e.g. this week they overheated coming into and through LA.

Seems to me a fully laden Chinook is right at the top of the E350 weight limit. An added tow car increases the load even with supplementary brake system (e.g. Blue Ox Patriot system, which is what I have).

Wondering if there is a popular upgrade. e.g. Different rotors (slotted/cryogenic)? Upgraded aftermarket pads?

If you've done an upgrade how much difference has it made?

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PostPosted: August 18th, 2017, 9:43 pm 
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Joined: July 31st, 2014, 1:01 am
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Location: 1999 Concourse
I researched and then made an upgrade in the late fall of 2014. Many years and miles since then and I wouldn't change it. Very, very pleased.

Like you, I felt the stock Chinook was "under-braked." I'd been driving an E-250 camper van before the Chinook, so it's not like I had sports car expectations. I felt the E-250 was fine, but the Chinook.... no. I lived in fear of the stale green light. And my brakes were in great condition.

At the time, I thought maybe it was because my year has rear drums. Well, as part of my research I contacted a friend who not only has a Ford van (E-350 dually), but also manages a fleet at work. He knows a lot about the ins and outs, parts, etc. I explained what I didn't like, and then asked what would be involved in changing the rear drums to discs. Surprisingly, he said he didn't think that would make all that much difference, and that what he would do (indeed had done) in my position would be to go to the 2008-newer front brakes. They are much beefier (which I can attest to, having seen my old ones side by side with the new ones). He suggested that I look into having an entire take-off front end put on. This gives the brakes, but also the newer front end suspension components, which are somewhat improved (2008-newer). I contacted Quadvan in Portland, OR (whom he recommended) because they were taking off brand new E-350 front ends (suspension/axle/brakes) in order to convert the vans to 4WD.

Upshot was, I was able to drive up there (bonus for gorgeous drive up 395 with fall colors), he put on the new front end in his tidy shop in less than a day, and I drove out with noticeably more powerful front brakes that felt like they were matched to the vehicle. Zero complaints. Now when a light turns yellow, I don't worry about stopping (instead I think about what's going to shift in the back :D).

I don't think that ALL of the newer front end has to be put on in order to get the newer brakes. In my case it was a no-brainer, because he had a brand new 2014 take-off ready to put on my Chinook, and since I had 50,000 miles on, I didn't mind that it also included all new tie rods, ball joints, etc. But my main focus was the brakes - the rest was just a bonus.

I think some other folks have done just the brakes by ordering only those parts and putting (or having them put) on.

Likely there are other things (frozen rotors, etc.), but seeing the heft of the 2008+ parts I'm glad I went that way. I would do it again without a second thought.

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PostPosted: August 20th, 2017, 12:28 pm 
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Joined: June 8th, 2017, 6:20 am
Posts: 8
I found this very informative thread.

http://www.sportsmobileforum.com/forums ... 11255.html

Full parts list , pictures, driving impressions.


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