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Old 12-25-2018, 12:31 PM   #1
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Track Pads Questions

I've been researching pads for my '02 base Boxster, and have some questions for those of you who track your cars. I do three or four track days per year, usually at SCCA Track Night in America events, because they are cheap (but you never know what the other drivers will be like; it's the wild, wild west at those events). That means 60 minutes of track time per event.

I currently run EBC Yellows, which I've come to find are unsuitable pads, as once they get hot, you get a terrible shuddering at all the wheels. It's my experience that they don't fade, because you can't brake hard enough to really test them without the car shaking so badly that it's very worrisome.

I would consider myself an advanced driver, since I have lots of years of racing experience. In a normal track day, the only cars that pass me in the advanced group are much faster cars (Mustang Cobra GT350s, turbo'ed Miata's, later model 911s, those damned WRX's) that usually are using R-compound tires. For the upcoming year I've acquired another set of wheels that I'll be running Hankook RS4's on. My aim is to just have a good time and be able to give myself and the car a decent workout.

My car has a ROW M030 springs and shocks, with as aggressive an alignment as you can get with stock suspension components. I want the car to remain a pleasant street driver, with track duty not being it's primary mission.

From my research, I've narrowed my choices down to Pagid (Orange, Yellow, or Blacks), or Raybestos ST 43 or 41s. I'd like to use the PFC 08 pads, but they aren't available for base Boxster brakes. Since I'll probably also run the pads for street use, I want something that works okay at regular temps and isn't terribly noisy or dusty, but I know that with track pads, it's a real compromise.

From what I've read, the Hawk track compounds are very hard on rotors for street use, so that is why I'm not looking at those.

What say the 986Forum mind-hive? Which color Pagids do you find the best? Which Raybestos compound is favored? The Raybestos are less expensive, but there isn't a huge difference in price. If you have any other reasonable suggestions, I'd like to hear them!
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Old 12-25-2018, 01:28 PM   #2
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I'm subscribing here, because I'll be looking at the same thing shortly.

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Old 12-25-2018, 03:39 PM   #3
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I have used Pagid Orange. Never have had a problem at the track. A litte noisy sometimes, not too bad.
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Old 12-25-2018, 07:38 PM   #4
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In my experience, Pagid are pretty much the default pad for Spec Boxster, and there are few if any complaints. Most SPB racers I know have gravitated to some combination of Yellow and/or Black (or even Red) depending on preference of feel and effective bias.

Given that you are talking about a few track days/hours per year, Orange will work. I ran them on my car when it was a street + track car for years (eventually switched to Yellow/Black for racing). They'll be noisier on the street than stock pads, but you'll get used to it. For HPDE, Orange is a reasonable choice. For a car that is driven on the street, Orange may be preferable to Yellow and Black due to less rotor wear and working better at lower temperatures.
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Old 12-26-2018, 06:40 AM   #5
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My thoughts...

If you want a street pad that will also work for the track, then I'd recommend EBC Yellow. They won't make any noise on the street but may not hold up if you are truly running front of the pack Spec Boxster lap times. They are more affordable than Pagid. They might work well if you're only doing four track days per year and the rest of the driving is on the street.

If you want a track pad that will also work for the street, then as Trygve suggests, I'd also recommend Pagid Orange. That is what I currently run on my Spec Boxster that is driven on the street. The pads make some noise but they don't squeal like an 18-wheeler at every stop sign. These pads will provide great track performance but are more expensive.

To sum up:
Street friendly, affordable, good on the track: EBC Yellow
Great track performance, some noise on the street, but more expensive: Pagid Orange
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Old 12-26-2018, 07:23 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by thstone View Post
My thoughts...

If you want a street pad that will also work for the track, then I'd recommend EBC Yellow. They won't make any noise on the street but may not hold up if you are truly running front of the pack Spec Boxster lap times. They are more affordable than Pagid. They might work well if you're only doing four track days per year and the rest of the driving is on the street.
As I mentioned in my original post, I've been using EBC Yellows, but found them to be terrible on the track. When they get hot, they cause a terrible juddering at each corner. Reading of other's experiences on this forum, I know that I'm not alone in experiencing that. They seem to work okay up to 7/10ths driving, but if you go past that, no thanks.
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Old 12-26-2018, 07:46 AM   #7
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As I mentioned in my original post, I've been using EBC Yellows, but found them to be terrible on the track. When they get hot, they cause a terrible juddering at each corner. Reading of other's experiences on this forum, I know that I'm not alone in experiencing that. They seem to work okay up to 7/10ths driving, but if you go past that, no thanks.
Sorry to hear that. I have gone through at least 10 sets of EBC Yellow and never had that experience (including racing 3 full season's on them). But I completely understand why you wouldn't want to use them again.

But for others reading this thread at a later date, they might want to give the EBC Yellows a try before jumping to a full race pad like the Pagid's.
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Last edited by thstone; 12-26-2018 at 07:51 AM.
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Old 12-26-2018, 08:06 AM   #8
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That's interesting. I wonder what the differences are in why they worked for you, but not me? I tried new rotors, and that made no difference. I also bedded them in according to EBC's directions.

In fact, I've tried green, red, and yellow EBCs; green faded easily (no surprise), and both reds and yellow gave me the shuddering. That's why I'm going to try something else.


Anyone here had experience with the Porterfield RS4s?
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Old 12-26-2018, 08:35 AM   #9
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Sorry to hear that. I have gone through at least 10 sets of EBC Yellow and never had that experience (including racing 3 full season's on them). But I completely understand why you wouldn't want to use them again.

But for others reading this thread at a later date, they might want to give the EBC Yellows a try before jumping to a full race pad like the Pagid's.
I would agree.

I have been running EBC Yellows for a couple of seasons of tracking and not had any shuddering issues
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Old 12-26-2018, 08:57 AM   #10
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I used EBC yellow last season for HPDE's. I had some mild shuddering when they'd start to get hot, but of more concern to me was the fade. Around lap 5 of each session the brakes would start to feel like wood. Very low initial bite and even less as I'd get into them deeper. I was always forced to take an "easy lap" to cool them off so they'd work again.

I'm running gt3 cooling "ducts" and motul rbf600 fluid. (Still rubber hoses, though)

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Old 12-26-2018, 03:35 PM   #11
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Get pads with complimentary compounds and swap out the fronts when you put on the other set of wheels. So get some Pagid Orange for the front and rear and swap out to Yellow for the track on the fronts only. If you don't do a lot of track days - this works well.
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Old 12-26-2018, 04:21 PM   #12
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I have an 02 S and I'm looking for track pads as well. My EBC yellows wear out very quickly, especially the front. I'm going to get a set of PFC 08s after a lot of deliberation. I now run in the DE4 groups and push the car a decent amount. How about the EBC oranges? I don't know about the others.
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Old 12-27-2018, 03:05 AM   #13
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Deleted, sorry posted in the wrong thread.

Last edited by driver8; 12-27-2018 at 01:22 PM.
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Old 12-27-2018, 07:08 AM   #14
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The seat and harness set up will not pass a PCA tech inspection. I would encourage you to talk with the organizations you plan on running with regarding their minimum standards/rules. This is a way to ensure your build is in compliance and you do not have any issues once you get to the track.
What seat and harness setup are you talking about?
I've read and re-read the thread... I don't see ANYTHING about a seat and harness.... this thread is about brake pads.

What the.... ???? SUNNUVA>.....
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Old 12-29-2018, 09:20 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Racer Boy View Post
That's interesting. I wonder what the differences are in why they worked for you, but not me? I tried new rotors, and that made no difference. I also bedded them in according to EBC's directions.

In fact, I've tried green, red, and yellow EBCs; green faded easily (no surprise), and both reds and yellow gave me the shuddering. That's why I'm going to try something else.


Anyone here had experience with the Porterfield RS4s?
FWIW, rotor judder is generally from uneven hot pad transfer to the rotors. This is usually caused by failing to take a nice easy cool down lap or an easy drive down paddock row to cool the rotors down before stopping the car. I had this problem with Pagid Yellows and it got really bad but in hindsight, it was probably my cool down habits, not the pads fault. I cool down for at least 2 miles now and have never had another problem.

The best high heat pads I have used are Raybestos ST-43 custom cut from Porterfield. Excellent modulation, heat management, and they last 20+ track days. I have run these pads for about 7 years now and love them. Downside: They squeal like a school bus when cold.
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Old 12-29-2018, 10:43 AM   #16
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I have a Boxster non S 2004. I want to get new brake pads and new plain rotors. My car is mostly a street car and sometimes i use it as my daily driver. I'm planning next year to start to do two or three track days per year and have fun. Do some aggressive laps and cool laps but not anything like time attack or competition or unlike the OP 60 minutes of track time.

In my case will the EBC Yellows be fine or maybe get the Reds? I do not want a lot of squeal. I can tolerate a little bit of squeal but prefer no squeal. I will get the shim or damping plates my car do not have them, it has the stock pads. Was thinking of getting the Akebono pads for the street and maybe Yellows for the front but honestly i would prefer 1 set of pads.
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Old 12-31-2018, 08:10 PM   #17
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If you want primarily a road pad that can take some extra heat then look at the Ferodo DS2500 or DS1.11
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Old 01-01-2019, 05:52 AM   #18
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FWIW, rotor judder is generally from uneven hot pad transfer to the rotors. This is usually caused by failing to take a nice easy cool down lap or an easy drive down paddock row to cool the rotors down before stopping the car. I had this problem with Pagid Yellows and it got really bad but in hindsight, it was probably my cool down habits, not the pads fault. I cool down for at least 2 miles now and have never had another problem.

The best high heat pads I have used are Raybestos ST-43 custom cut from Porterfield. Excellent modulation, heat management, and they last 20+ track days. I have run these pads for about 7 years now and love them. Downside: They squeal like a school bus when cold.
Judder can also occur when you have two incompatible brake compounds on the same rotor. Ceramic and metallic compounds don't mix well and some metallics don't work well together either.
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Old 01-01-2019, 03:03 PM   #19
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I had been using EBC reds, got the shuddering, and then switched to the yellows. I was very careful to bed the pads according to EBCs instructions, but on the second lap of my first session the shudder returned. If I backed off for a lap to cool the brakes, they felt fine. Start using the brakes hard again, and the shudder started back up. It was so bad that I couldn't try to ignore it; it felt like I was going to break something if I persisted with it vibrating that badly.

I've got many years of racing experience, and have bedded new brakes many, many times, so I'm confident that I'm not doing it wrong. At one time I raced a first generation RX7 that was very fast in a straight line, but the car had really small brakes for it's performance, so I learned to manage the brakes. Our races were half an hour long, so if you managed things correctly, you'd have brakes for the whole race. If you tried to outbrake another car, then the brakes were done. The best brakes I found were the Porterfield RS4's - the fronts were good for one race, the rears were good for two races. So it's really frustrating for me that I have a car with relatively big brakes that is quite a bit slower than the old RX7, but I haven't been able to use those brakes.
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Old 01-01-2019, 04:19 PM   #20
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I use Pagid yellow RSL29 front and rear on my 04 Boxster S. Its a track only car but see no reason the pads wouldn't work on the street. They work well cold, better when hot. I did 5 PCA race weekends this year and one set lasted 4 weekends. Before racing, I got more than a full season per set driving in the advanced drivers ed group.

I know the pagids are expensive, but you've likely wasted more $$ testing/throwing away cheap pads up to this point.
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