Old 07-19-06, 06:24 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: MD
Posts: 2,096

What is the difference between ceramic and semi metallic shoes? I'm looking for a moderately priced yet trouble free brake shoe but don't know the terms to use when buying.
Thank you.
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Old 07-19-06, 07:29 AM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Sterling Heights
Posts: 308
Originally Posted by peterr
What is the difference between ceramic and semi metallic shoes? I'm looking for a moderately priced yet trouble free brake shoe but don't know the terms to use when buying.
Thank you.
I don't know the technical differences between Ceramic and Semi-Metalic shoes but from my understanding, you should use what the manufacturer specifies.

Most brand name, high quality brake shoes come in both Ceramic and Semi-Metalic depending on what is specified for you vehicle.

I mostly do my own brake jobs if I have the time and have always used Raybestos "SuperStop" pads and shoes. They're not the cheapest but they're not the most expensive either.

The SuperStops are designed for severe duty applications like police cars and other "fleet' vehicles. They perform as well as OEM shoes/pads, don't create any dust and last a long time.
Good luck,
Old 07-19-06, 07:54 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 263
if your debating raybestos ceramic vs raybestos semi-metallic you ignore what the manufacturer says. and go semi.

Now if your looking for a ceramic that won't wreck your rotors or squeek like hell my first pick is akebono, then wagner.

Everyone like to be expensive on ceramics so I buy mine from tirerack.com they also stock oem brembo rotors for cheap.

If your driving is not heavy duty you can stay away from carbon pads. I live in a big city where most of my driving isn't above 20mph when the speed limit is 55mph. because of traffic jams constant stop go everyday. I usually get 12k miles per set of brake pads. I currently switched to hawk hps cabon pads which have lasted me 25k miles so far and still have some meat left on them. my vehicle came oem with ceramic, Which i have tried every brand on it. the raybestos ceramic destroyed my rotors and heat fractured them and squeeked. I found out why this was through later research and it is also the reason they have pretty much lost all the market share for their ceramic line. The akebono lasted the longest of all ceramic(but not nearly as long as carbon) and are very rotor friendly, they also resist fade the most of all cermaic pads. akebono just came out with a euro and street performance line so i will have to try those. The wagner worked great for about the first half of the pad. Then they started to show some fade after long endurance test in traffic.

The carbon pads don't fade at all and have lasted the longest. But they dust pretty bad(not as bad as semi-metallic). I see it as rather have brakes that work well and dust rather than fade.

I haven't used a semi-mettalic pad in such a long time I forgot how they feel, the ceramic is way better. The whole mumbo jumbo your vehicle came with so ceramic, so we need to put that back on is just a sales pitch. A cermic pad brand I won't name runs the same formulation on every pad that causes major problems. so the pad your putting will more than likely have the wrong formulation for your vehicle.

Reason why I say stick with akebono proact for american and akebono euro; for jap and euro cars is because if your watching market shares akebono pretty much has taken all the oem business with the exception of a few lines.

Go to the manufacturers websites and read about how they design pads. you will see that one company actually makes a formulation for each vehicle, and not have a couple different formulations that get ran on everything.

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