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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
The RS rotor would fit pretty well, the reality of that though is you have the caliper fitting which needs a bracket if that's possible at all, the pistons are too small for a 350 rotor on the Volvo so you are probably throwing out the rotor anyways for a larger one, which the caliper won't fit (would need a 380 or so to balance out) and no performance rotor is going to be made to a 25mm width, the caliper is essentially too thin. The lightest of our cars are 3700# maybe and up from there on the SPA chassis. The RS rotor is 24lb which should be heavier than the 322 Volvo rotor though that rotor is 28mm wide and may outperform the RS rotor in cooling. The 345x30, the most common Volvo SPA front rotor, is 26.5lbs so you already start ahead of the RS in heat capacity, appropriate for a 4000+# car. I have evaluated all the possibilities, and this was one of them.

Golf R has got good brakes for modest sliding calipers. Consider again it's quite a bit lighter than the Volvos! 3400-3500#? Tires are always the limiting factor...for stopping distance. The reason you might upgrade brakes is better brake feel of fixed caliper and the superior thermal performance, i.e. not to stop once, but to do that 2,3,4 times more, like on a fun road, or descending grades, without cooking the pads, seals, and fluid. Also because shiny ;-)

With the 322 rotors you do have to swap the calipers to go to the 345. So that's calipers and brackets plus core charge if new, or the labor to rebuild used calipers and you might want to clean/paint them the cast iron looks ratty pretty quickly! While I am focused on the complete package, I have designed an alternate bracket to fit my caliper to the 366x30 (XC60/90 T8) rotor so I could offer a caliper kit to do that swap with the inexpensive OEM Volvo rotor. All said and done I could probably deliver that for not much more than buying 345 calipers and brackets from Volvo. Would require 19" wheels, and a small wheel spacer. Would be lighter in total while adding a ton of heat capacity over the cast iron boat anchor OEM calipers, the weight would all be in the rotor where it counts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
That Neuspeed wheel looks pretty good. I'm not looking for wheels now, but there seem to be a few out there in 19x8.5 that fit. I would probably want a 19x9 for some more serious tire to get me to swap wheels, that seems hard to find though. I am the same, hub rings and wheel spacers always seem like a kludge if you want to preserve the OEM design, they generally work fine but not optimal. That's why I set out to fit a brake package into the stock packaging, no compromises.
 

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For me, the deal breaker on this kit would be the need for 19" wheels. I think 19's on this car are crazy, and my first mod is going to be to go to 18's.

-to go to the stock 345's, I assume I'd need calipers/brackets/dust shields, correct?

-regarding the Neuspeed wheels, in my experience they run a bit wide. I've run 235's on the 8" with no stretch, and their are plenty of guys running 255's on the 8.5". So, you should be able to run a 255/35 19 on the RSE's and have a good profile to the tire. Personally, I'd recommend going much wider than 8.5" ET45, or you're going to start increasing scrub radius closer to zero. Any benefit you get from the wider rim and increasing track will be offset by that, imo
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
I got you on the 19s. To give a bit of insight, what I had not realized early and have learned along the way, is all of the little decisions that need to be made. Truly as engineers say "everything is a compromise". I know there are a lot of people that prefer the 18's so that was a though. 18's limit the rotor size, maybe up to 355 but no bigger. To make that an upgrade we need to go wider rotor, which then is going to need a wider series of caliper and kills the dream of fitting any OEM wheels, and might need quite large spacers, 15 or 20mm. I reasoned that the intersection of those that want a brake upgrade and insist on 18" wheels, that might be quite small. Too much is made of big wheels, enthusiasts like to be "smart" and contrarian. Damper technology allows OEMs to control the larger wheels pretty well, shorter sidewalls do for the most part improve the handling. Brakes just need space to mount and the larger is wheel is a fact of life. I do consider in 2021 a 19" is rather standard such as 17s used to be, then 18s. I designed to fit all the SPAs and many of those are coming with 20/21/22s!

I try to hedge my bets, I did initially design and test a bracket to fit my caliper to the OEM 345mm rotor. There are a couple of challenges to overcome to complete that. I just have to be careful not to try to make too many parts, I don't even know if I can justify a single product in the market yet, much less a bunch of variations. We shall find out on that!

Yeah I am not serious about wheels for now, but would probably only do a 9" if the offset could be done to maintain the scrub radius or close to it. The availability on 8.5 so much better though so would probably end up with that. But that makes it a bit less of a reason to change, I can just spend the money on sticky tires and get more grip for now and I have been pretty happy with that!
 

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Very impressive and thorough engineering! I'm not sure how I missed this before! I've only owned my 2018 V90 for a month but the biggest area it is lacking in is the brakes - at least in my opinion. The OEM pads just feel weird and I really miss the fixed-caliper feel from other cars. Not to mention the aesthetics as my Volvo iron calipers age...

The full-tilt custom rotor option sounds cool but I'd probably be more into the version that could run the 366mm Volvo rotor for cheap and available replacements. Where I live rotors are throw-away parts even with the best coatings. I've scrapped many rotors that didn't even outlast one set of pads just for corrosion. Plus for my use the fixed-caliper rigidity is way higher priority than significantly increasing heat capacity.

I think I have a guess as to which caliper (or at least caliper family) you have in mind, too. In fact, if it is what I think it is, I actually have an abandoned project to retrofit it to another vehicle platform complete with scrap suspension upright sitting on a shelf in the garage from many years ago.

Very interested in hearing more and would love to help in any way I can. I don't have any professional experience in automotive brakes but I am a mechanical engineer working in product development and have a decent amount of car-hobby experience.

Edit: Now I see the picture. It didn't show up earlier for some reason. That's not quite the caliper that I had guessed.

Either way. I'm very interested!
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
Hey thanks for checking in! I've been quiet while work continues... I do like to share, there are just so many little challenges to get over, it happens painfully slow for anyone following along. It's hard for anyone to envision the end product before I am done. I got really high standards for doing things proper so it can be painful at times lol.

To your points I can say that I did change direction. Ultimately I was not totally happy with the full rotor kit, I met the goals of fitting with no spacers, but among some other issues I didn't like, I was thinking who is the product for? Not big enough for a full on "road and track" brakes, with the expense of the rotors. This is the same problem the "street" brake kits have, all the looks and expense for no actual improvement. I went back to putting the caliper on the OEM 345mm rotor. It turned out well, I've been running it for a while now and getting closer to production ready. I hated to put spacers on but it's just how it has to be and any other brake kit needs them too. Once I got over that I've been thrilled. It's exactly what I envisioned, awesome pedal feel and modulation, with great street manners. I just love driving the car, like it was the missing piece to my sport chassis ha. No noises, no grunts, no rumbles of slotted rotors. Inexpensive rotors, all easily available off the shelf service parts. Although some might think I am some sort of track junkie by my threads, that has never been my goal! I may revisit the 366 rotor it's not hard to adapt, would almost totally be for looks though and not sure if that or fitting 18" wheels will be more important to others.

As I inch closer I'm producing a few finished kits and find some folks who want to test them. PM me if you might be interested. As these brakes will fit all the SPA and CMA cars there is a wide range, the kicker to that is there are a number of different brake hoses and bracket mounting so I have that to figure out to expand it beyond the S/V60. I'd love to exchange a little info for the V90 to see what I need to do to cover that for the hose. I'm working with hose suppliers so it's a good time to do that. By far one of the hardest things, and most unexpected, is finding a stainless hose supplier that can meet all the IMO critical functionality of the OEM hose. Now I know why so many kits come with a bare hose and some home depot hardware for a bracket, It takes hard work to do it right!
 
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