What do the various brake compounds do?

The different racing brake compounds are prepared individually for the type of vehicle its setup, the type of track it’s being raced on and even the driver’s style. Each provides a different friction level, and different characteristics –so the driver or crew chief can “tune” with the pad compound to deliver the intended performance. A change in pad compound can help target the ideal bite, fade resistance, release and wear characteristics the racer is looking for at a given event… or sometimes… for a different approach between qualifying and raceday setups.

How do racing pads compare to street pads?

Racing pads are engineered to thrive in sustained high-heat operation, delivering a tremendous amount of friction and torque for improved stopping power. The Raybestos ST-range of race pads operate at 1,100-1,400°F, while typical street pads rarely see temperatures above 600°F. Competition friction material in racing pads is also 6 to 7 times more dense, and heavier, than a comparable street pad. They are aggressive, wear more rapidly, tend to make some noise and create a lot of dust. This is fine in a racing application, but definitely not the kind of attributes you want in a street pad.

What goes into making a brake pad?

Our team of friction formulators develops compounds from raw materials sourced around the globe. In development of each compound, they test extensively on our in-house racing brake dyno, where each Raybestos compound and competitive brake pad is benchmark tested – using dyno protocols built from race team partner telemetry from the toughest braking tracks. We have a range of dyno protocols from team data at tracks like Martinsville, Watkins Glen and Sebring. We start with steel backing plates equipped with mechanical hooks for better adhesion, keeping the friction material locked onto the backing plate – to avoid delamination failures. Then our proprietary friction compounds are carefully mixed in small batches, loaded into a positive molds, cycled in a press, flat ground to final thickness spec and then heat-cured for up to 12 hours.


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