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Big Brakes

4043 Views 7 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  NWDragRacer
I found a fairly easy and inexpensive way to get big brakes on early Xbody cars using modern GM parts. These calipers and rotors are from the '98-'02 Camaro and Firebirds and are the same PBR 2 piston units used on the Baer GT and GT+ kits. I was able to buy the complete rotor and caliper setup from a wrecked Camaro for under $200.

This will work on the following cars that have DRUM brakes. If you have the early disc brake spindles, you should sell them (big $$) and aquire ones from a drum brake car.

  • 67-69 Camaro/Firebird
  • 64-72 A-body - Chevelle, Cutlass, Skylark, Lemans
  • 68-74 Novas
  • 62-67 Novas with modifications (more below)
  1. The first step is to have the outside diameter of the hub machined downed so that it will fit inside the rotor hat. I also used extra long wheel studs on the hubs.
  2. Fabricate an adaptor plate that connects the caliper mounting bracket to the spindle. I used 1/4" steel plate.
  3. The plate dimensions depend on the rotor size that you are using. In this case, the stock Camaro 11.9" rotors require 16" wheels. Smaller rotors would allow 15" wheels to be used. The bolts sticking out are used to attach to the caliper bracket. These are metric.

  4. A small spacer is required on the lower mount on the steering arm bolt. Always use grade 8 or better hardware on steering and brake components. This includes the washers or spacers. In this case I used a flat ground washer from a head stud kit and a grade 8 washer to get the proper spacing.
Special considerations for '62-'67 Chevy IIs and Novas

  1. The spindles must be converted to later spindles.
  2. Must use 5 lug steering knuckle arms found on 64-67 Novas
Global West has the following kit to do the conversion.

Simple disc brake conversion

Nova disc brake conversions came be easy with our DB-1010 kit. All you need is spindles off a donor car and 5 lug steering knuckle arms found on 64-67 Nova's . The upper ball joints off the donor cars have the same taper as your current upper ball joint. The lower ball joints will be handled by our kit. The kit comes with 2 ball joints, 2 ball joint housings, and 2 retaining rings. A little welding will be in order but no cutting of your lower control arm. Simply weld our ball joint housings into your lower control arms, press the ball joints into the housings, and install the retaining rings. It is just that easy. The list of the donor cars are: 67-69 Camaro/Firebird, 64-72 Chevelle, Olds Cutlass, Buick Skylark, Pontiac Lemans , basically all A-bodies and 68-74 Nova's. Part # DB-1010 ----- Price $123.00 includes lower ball joints.


DB-1010 Nova Disc Brake conversion Kit
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1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Great pics and info. I'm sure plenty of members here will be interested in this conversion. Lots of aftermarket disc brake kits on the market these days, but the price can scare many away from going this route.
there's a company out there that sells adapter plates for a few muscle cars. that guy chose to go with s-10 brakes though, which i believe uses metric hardware.

if you can help me get an adaptor plate template (or the plate itself) that i can take to a machine shop for my nova, i'd greatly appreciate it!
I'm going to have to remember this for when the day finally comes to upgrade.

Lots of good info here!!
Here is what you want:

It is for first gen camaro, but is the same for x body 68-74

It also has templates for c4 calipers or LS1 (4gen camaro) calipers
i had C4 Corvette 12" front brakes on my Nova, and it did stop pretty sweet.
everything also fit inside a set of 15" early 70's Z/28 5 spoke wheels.
even without a power booster, the pedal feel was about the same as the power brakes in my 94 9C1 Caprice.
i think i had $500 into the whole swap- and that was with all new GM parts and Russell braided hoses.
i downloaded the bracket template off David Pozzi's site (he's over on and made them out of 5/16" steel, but 1/4" would have worked better.
Fast65 said:
Great pics and info. I'm sure plenty of members here will be interested in this conversion. Lots of aftermarket disc brake kits on the market these days, but the price can scare many away from going this route.
See for more pictures.

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