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Old 09-18-2021, 03:09 AM   #21
Mart
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

The original question was which is better. Disk brakes are better.
Is a dual master better than a single? Yes if it is a factory designed unit with all the built in extra travel available at the pedal to make the remaining circuit still work if one should fail. You probably wouldn't have that in a conversion of an existing application, especially one with pedals that go down to the floor.
What is your intended usage? That is probably the most relevant question. Just pootling around the local area? Or high speed runs on busy highways in rush hour.
If just pootling, then it may be ok to just stick with drums.
If multiple stops from high speed are envisaged then go with a power disk conversion.
Do you have a lot of experience driving this truck? Has it actually scared you? Are the brakes in good condition? Or are you worrying about a scenario that hasn't happened and may never happen if the working envelope of the vehicle is taken into account?

If it were an open wheel hot rod and looks were paramount, then sticking with drums is normally the obvious choice. But in a fully fendered pickup then a sympathetic conversion to disks would be unnoticeable and would probably be ok if done correctly. The main thing to consider is increasing the track width. A conversion that has minimal track width increase would be better.

You have the answers to the questions and should be able to make an informed decision.

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Old 09-18-2021, 03:24 AM   #22
51 MERC-CT
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

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Originally Posted by aussie merc View Post
not denying that discs have taken over for several reasons cost being one reliability being another since they self adjust
The rear Bendix drum brakes also self adjust, so in that factor they are equal.
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Old 09-18-2021, 07:22 AM   #23
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

I put disc brakes on my merc and there is a noticeable difference. My reasoning is simple. Do I value my car and do i want to destroy it by slamming into a Honda that has twice the braking ability than my car has? Cars and driving habits have changed in the past 70 years.
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Old 09-18-2021, 07:23 AM   #24
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

The brake debate! Somewhat akin to the oil debate. Dino vs synthetic vs a blend. Drums vs vs 4 wheel discs vs disc drum combination. The drum brakes on my Ď39 work fine and I wonít consider changing them. Yes it takes a heavier foot as they are not vacuum boosted. Yes I have to think ahead and prepare to stop earlier and descend hills with their limitations in mind but itís one of the reasons I like driving it. Back to a a more involved driving experience. I like the Armstrong steering, 100 hp, three speed on the floor etc.
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Old 09-18-2021, 08:41 AM   #25
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

I read all the comments on the "greatness" of drum brakes and my conclusion
is that drum brakes have their place on museum-pieces not driven in the real world. I like nostalgia too but there's really no feeling worse than when something won't stop. I've been in that situation and I prefer to never be along for that ride.
The issue is mainly friction material-related and the fact that the main players
in that business haven't really updated their offerings in friction materials used in brake shoes since the removal of asbestos from their toolbox.
Sure, there is Porterfield. I had them on my F1 for awhile. They're ok shoes. In a loaded vehicle application, they don't provide a huge improvement in repetitive stopping that you might want to see in heavy traffic or for elevation changes.
After 25 years of being involved in the automotive aftermarket working for ACDelco, Akebono Brake Corporation and Global West, I decided to design my own setup. This, after taking a close look at Wilwood and some of the other sellers of front disc brake kits.
I didn't want ridiculously huge front discs/calipers, bearing adapters and some strange mis-mash of parts. I did want to use my original 15" rims and not affect track width.
Having already switched to a dual reservoir drum master from a '68 Mustang, I merely removed the residual valve on the rear port and bolted on my front disc, using the original drum hubs. (master cylinder reservoir capacity is enough to handle the caliper piston's displacement)

No bearing adapters, uses original wheels, track width 1/4" less than factory and great stopping.
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Old 09-18-2021, 09:20 AM   #26
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

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I think application of the vehicle is the issue. Having an old car with stock engine and local driving, the orginal brakes in good working order is more then adequate. However, up grading the power and speed, interstate driving, converting to a better braking system is a must.
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Old 09-18-2021, 10:53 AM   #27
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

The stock brakes in my '51 are just fine, thank you, I can lock 'em up any time I want to. Since there are no mountains (an few large hills) in Minnesota, I don't see any time I would have the need to it more than once in a row. I have to believe that it now comes down to tires.
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Old 09-18-2021, 11:15 AM   #28
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

Leave the orig. brakes alone, I have a 53 Ford F100, I restored 30 yrs ago with all NOS orig. Ford brakes and brake parts, i drive it all the time, it stops fine, I do not know why a lot of people want to change to disc or power brakes, they must have old worn out systems, I recently saw a poster someone made, It tells the true story, Henry Ford says I did not build these cars to put Chevrolet engines in.
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Old 09-18-2021, 11:33 AM   #29
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

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I recently saw a poster someone made, It tells the true story, Henry Ford says I did not build these cars to put Chevrolet engines in.
Maybe Henry said it but at one point in time Henry did use GM parts.
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Old 09-18-2021, 11:35 AM   #30
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

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The rear Bendix drum brakes also self adjust, so in that factor they are equal.
No self-adjusters until the early '60's, I believe those are F-100 brakes.

I have totally stock type brakes on my F-1. I've driven it cross-county on interstates much of the way, in heavy traffic at times, and in the mountains where 6 - 8% downgrades are common. Several panic stops. I've never had brake fade, and as Tubman says I can lock them up if I wanted to (with 235/75 tires too). The same brakes were factory well into the 60's on F-100's that were heavier.

In my lifetime, I've had 4 M/C's fail -- every one of them was a dual. Always seems to be the front circuit that fails, and having only rear brakes may be better than none, but not much.
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Old 09-18-2021, 11:47 AM   #31
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

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No self-adjusters until the early '60's, I believe those are F-100 brakes.
My self adjusters are installed on a '51 Merc on which the brakes are virtually identical to F100 brakes.
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Old 09-18-2021, 12:13 PM   #32
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

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Maybe Henry said it but at one point in time Henry did use GM parts.
If you work on a lot of different cars and I mean actually fix stuff, not merely doing R&R "mechanical work," you rapidly find out that there's quite a bit of sharing between manufacturers.
This goes on to this day but it isn't quite as prevalent as it once was.
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Old 09-18-2021, 03:40 PM   #33
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

[QUOTE=Mart;2057726]The original question was which is better. Disk brakes are better.
Is a dual master better than a single? Yes if it is a factory designed unit with all the built in extra travel available at the pedal to make the remaining circuit still work if one should fail. You probably wouldn't have that in a conversion of an existing application, especially one with pedals that go down to the floor.
What is your intended usage? That is probably the most relevant question. Just pootling around the local area? Or high speed runs on busy highways in rush hour.

Great reply Mart.
Which braking system performs best is in relation to long down hill braking and urban "slam the brake on" driving. Going up hill is more controllable than going down hill. So are drum brakes reliable enough for more modern hilly road surfaces where the down hill speeds are higher than first gear gravel roads as in the early day's?
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Old 09-18-2021, 03:42 PM   #34
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

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Originally Posted by 51 MERC-CT View Post
My self adjusters are installed on a '51 Merc on which the brakes are virtually identical to F100 brakes.
I should have said no Ford Trucks used self-adjusters until the early 60's. With modern shoes and hardware they can be added to the original brakes.
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Old 09-18-2021, 04:28 PM   #35
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Default Re: Disc Brakes V Bendix Brakes-Which performs best??

One thing I have noticed where disk brakes excel over drums is after driving through deep water but we don't do that anymore. If your truck is stock and well maintained and driven as intended you shouldn't have much fade problem. If you do switch make sure you know what every component is exactly for replacements.
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