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Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 9:47 am
by 3X00-Modified
Use this information at your own risk... I take no responsibility for any failures when doing this modification to your vehicle. You are fitting a part to the car that was not intended for it so the chance of some issue is always present.
Well, its officially in the works now. I just got off the phone with Mutual Auto Parts in MI and they are shipping me full setups for the 1996 Neon Sport Rear disc setup.

This is a Brake upgrade that I've seen done and heard about on the J-body forums for the LONGEST time... Actually to be more specific, here is their sticky thread title...
Neon disc swap how to
Thursday, July 21, 2005 3:12 PM ... 68&t=92768

Now I have access to a machine shop to get my parts machined so this is easy for me, but may be a little more difficult for others.

Now I'm moving to this over my old rear Vette setup due to the fact that this has a Drum/rotor setup, so the parking brake is still a drum. Also all the wear parts are over the counter replacement parts, and the bolt pattern is the same as factory.

When my parts come in I'll post more info about it and I'll try to do a write up specific to our cars, BUT in the end the J-body write up is dead nuts on, since we share the same rear bearing and beam setup.


I will edit and fix this thread more and add the specific info as the project goes on, and I look through the write up I have. For now you can reply to this sticky, but in the end the write up will be locked, I'll keep this thread alive though.


Brakes are installed... HOLY simple bolt on when you get the brackets done.

Lines and Adapters used
63011626ERL X2 3an to 7/16" Banjo 26" Hose
977522ERL x2 7/16 x24 Single Banjo Bolt (For Line to Caliper, I didn't have good ones)
989534ERL x2 Brake Adapter 3an to 10mm x 1.0 Female NOT Inverted Flare.
Double check all of your factory lines because you may not have the 10mm x 1.0 bubble flare like mine, my lines were all stock, but I do not know if they used that same line for all years. I know it applies to at least 94-96 since those all have the same rear lines.

The two modifications you need to make.

Grind down the top of the mounting bracket so the Neon bracket will sit low enough for the holes to line up.


And I also cut the hook off the end of my e-brake cable so it fit in there better. I'm not sure if I had new pads if it would have been tighter, but after I did this I did end up having to adjust the cable in a good amount before it started to grab, so I really probably could have left it.... But I reused what e-brake pads came with the setup.


I will also try to copy over the write up from the J-body board and start a new pinned topic to replace this one.


Brake fittings used 3AN to 10mm x 1.0 NON inverted flare... Uses factory GM bubble flared lines to a -3an line to attach my 26" -3an to 7/16 banjo. I also used these adapters up front do do my 20" lines for the big brake setup.
Fed line through rear subframe assy, nice clean install.




I used 5 7/16 stainless washers to space the rotor out a tiny bit so it wouldn't touch the dust backing plate. Our bearings are slightly shorter than what the neon had there so you need to space it out about .080" This has also pushed my wheels out a good amounts, so I'll have to look at rolling my fenders some how and I'll have to be careful not to crack the paint on the inside edge... since once that happens it can start to flake off and could work its way around to the outside where its visible.

More updates on the way, I have a busy week with getting the race car ready for thursday so I wont be touching this again till the weekend.

4 wheel disc FTMFW!

Finished product





Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 4:54 pm
by Red_Bra_Black_GTZ
why not wait to see my car, and look at the GM brakes that i have... the rear swap went rather well. the only issue was the proper lenght of the hand brake cable. it is a tim special(mantapart)

Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 4:56 pm
by 3X00-Modified
I've seen your brakes, and I don't want a mantapart style setup... The neon setup is a bolt in swap after minimal machining on the bracket and I can guarantee I'll have it done in under $300 including rebuilt calipers and new pads and rotors.

IIRC yours is also not a drum/disc combo, I want a drum parking brake period, I will not compromise.

Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 5:23 pm
by Red_Bra_Black_GTZ
my hand brake pulls a 'cam' that applies pressure on the disk. is that what you do not like?

Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Wed Apr 01, 2009 5:50 pm
by 3X00-Modified
Thats what I have on my red car, and it doesn't grab strong enough. Ever since I put the Vette rear calipers on my 95 My e-brake wouldn't hold if I went to warm up my tires... they would just roll and not grip enough. But yes I don't like the pinch style ebrake that tries to hold the caliper pinched on the rotor, Its not strong enough of a setup. Drums are far superior in that aspect.

Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Thu Apr 02, 2009 1:20 am
by Cliff8928
Agreed! The drum-in-hat parking brake is far superior. Not to mention less troublesome.

My future plan is a rear brake setup from either a C5 or F-Body.

Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Thu Apr 02, 2009 1:34 am
by weba
Neon swap is nice to have entry level rear disc conversion, i'd love to see more of them, i think they may match pretty good with the stock fronts.

I agree with 3x00-Modified about the not so powerful e-brake on Vette\F-body calipers, i converted to 2-cable ebrake for that reason and it still could be more grippy.

If someone goes for Big brakes, converting for hydraulic handbrake or separate handbrake caliper is usually only way to go since those big discs rarely have functionality for drum e-brake. This sort of stuff is Very popular on europe.

Like this:

Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Thu Apr 02, 2009 8:26 am
by 3X00-Modified
They wont match well with stock fronts since they are larger, they are 10.63 in dia, where the fronts are only 10.2, not a huge difference, but noticeable non the less...

When it comes down to it, most of your stopping power is up front, upgrading to a HUGE disc in the rear thats vented and all of that jazz is just WAY overkill if you ask me. Geoff has proved you can run a Vette front caliper with a 12" rotor and continue to use a stock master cylinder. I've proved you can swap to 95 Vette Rear calipers and maintain an even setup with stock fronts... SO I can only assume that a Vette 12" setup up front and a 10.6 rear setup will be ideal for what i want to do, as well as keep the rotating weight increase to a minimum.

When I fully complete my setup I think it will be FAR superior to the factory setup and mantain full function on the e-brake side with all factory parts... Everything I'll be using will be able to be replaced over the counter with no modifications necessary before install.

Entry level disc conversion is what i have now with a 10" beretta rotor... This will be far superior and a upgrade to what I have previously done.

Now if you want to go overboard then yes a setup similar to the Baer kit or what Weba has is possible, but I don't think that is necessary.

Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Thu Apr 02, 2009 9:26 am
by Red_Bra_Black_GTZ
when it comes to stopping, there is no such thing as over kill. (only if you can afford the $$$$$ to do the upgrade). as i have a 90 retta, this dam car never stopped. when i did my manta upgrade in 2000, i still had the oem (from the factory)pads/disks/rotars etc.. i had about 43 000 miles. i could not wear them out, the car just did not stop... i can honestly say that i was able to lock up the wheels less then 10 times...

i do totally understand that the front (stops)brakes 80% and the rear 20%, and also that your cars front is better then my had to do an improvement on the front..

Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Thu Apr 02, 2009 9:35 am
by 3X00-Modified
Yes, but with our cars, going from a tiny 10" rotor that has done its job well, up to a 12" rotor designed to stop a full size Impala and a Vette caliper, I think that's about as far as I NEED to go with what my car will be doing, and what 90% of others will be doing on this site... Very few build a car like Weba and may possibly use all that braking power... But for me with the setup I have planned it will cover all the bases by far. And there is such a thing as overkill with brakes when you get to the point of adding 30lbs of rotating weight due to such large rotors...

hell this is my change...

Stock - 9.7 lbs
N-body - 4.1 lbs

Stock - 5.4 lbs
N-body - 7.2 lbs

Stock - 11.6 lbs
F-body - 18.7 lbs

14lbs alone on the rotors... That's a big increase and will hurt acceleration some. People get excited about removing 1-2lbs of rotating weight... this will add 7 to each wheel, and who knows how much to the rear.

Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Thu Apr 02, 2009 10:47 am
by 3X00-Modified
If you really desire it, you can also look into the 11.2" Daytona Vented disc setup... No real write up on it but its very similar modification needed to make it fit.

Only downside is apearance, the caliper hangs off at either 4-5 oclock or 7-8 depending on which side you put it on... A caliper hanging below 3 and 9 looks rather funny... this was done to minimize the amount of clearance needed in the bracket.

Images of bracket, Notice orientation of the bearing holes, wide on top narrow on bottom for the bearing so how they are orientated you can get an idea of where the caliper would sit.



Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 9:31 pm
by IsaacHayes
I've never been able to lock up the fronts even with 185w tires unless it's ice/rain or something. Not even sure I could lock up the 225's in rain. The rear disc will look good on your car Jon.

Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Mon Apr 06, 2009 2:00 am
by weba
If you ask me, the stock undersized brakes are dangerous, i have been several times near accident with them even when driving in daily driving conditions, not going over the speed limit, they may work in relaxed American traffic but won't complete with European standards by any means, we use bigger rotors on small 1 litre cars from the factory...

Most trouble i had was with the heavy 3.1+auto combo since i could not do effective use engine braking with it, 5spd swap seriously helped that issue at least.

If GM would have done it right, stock fronts would been around 11" and for GTZ, Indy and other higher end models should have got 12", and no drums in the back...

Like 3400-Modified mentioned, yes lighter brakes will help your acceleration, but i still think power is Nothing without control. =@

Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Mon Apr 06, 2009 1:12 pm
by Red_Bra_Black_GTZ
the rear "axle" pic, is that of pinky?

Re: Neon Rear Disc Brake Upgrade.

Posted: Mon Apr 06, 2009 1:46 pm
by 3X00-Modified
No thats a pic from the J-body forums... However it is a L-body rear axle. I was tempted to look into the larger 11.2" vented discs thats pictured in that, but I hear they are not as easy to swap over... so I'll start with what I have purchased and work from there, If I'm warping neon rotors left and right then ok I'll change to the larger setup but till that happens I think I will be perfectly happy with what I put in there.

Right now I just finished putting the gas tank back into pinky with the Walbro fuel pump, and also pulled my front brakes off to just replace them for now till I get the F-body stuff, and I just swapped out the steering rack... a 2.25 lock to lock rack went in.