Forged Billet 4-piston Superlite Caliper Highlights:

The Superlite caliper series has set the standard for many years in short track, late model, modified and open wheel competition. It has also enjoyed prominence in a variety of road-race, off-road, rally and sport driving applications. The Forged Billet Superlite (FSL) is the newest innovation to this series from Wilwood. New and adaptive technologies have been applied providing substantial improvements in strength, fluid volume displacement, and overall performance.

Forged Billet Superlite calipers use the 7420 type bridge bolt brake pad. The full range of PolyMatrix pad compounds is available to match brake response and heat range to any application. The FSL body design is a highly efficient product of computer generated solid modeling and stress analysis technology. Each caliper features closed end bridges with a radial transition to the piston body housings. The elimination of machined steps and sharp shoulders in this critical area provides a measurable increase in overall body strength and resistance to deflection under load. Center bridge bolts replace cotter pins to provide additional support and allow quick access with positive brake pad retention. Clamping force, structural deflection, and volume displacement tests have proven the superior strength and efficiency of the FSL. On-track testing has proven driver satisfaction. The bottom line is better stopping power with less pedal travel.

The superior strength of this innovative new caliper is combined with proven performance features from other Wilwood designs. Each caliper is equipped with Wilwood's replaceable SRS stainless steel bridge plates. SRS plates eliminate the bridge wear caused by pad gouging and extend the service life of the caliper body. The spring-loading action of the SRS plates also eliminates pad rattle and dampens the vibration harmonics that contribute to squeal under braking. Other standard Wilwood features include high-temperature, square faced o-ring seals for positive sealing, controlled piston retraction, and long service life in high heat conditions. Stainless steel pistons are used to resist corrosion and retard heat transfer from the pads. Fluid tubes are vibration dampened to resist stress fractures and reduce damage caused by track debris. Two-piece bleed screw assemblies provide long, reliable service life and are easily replace if necessary.

The most noteworthy feature of this new caliper design is the forging. Each body is stress-flow forged from premium grade aluminum alloy billets. Stress-flow forging re-aligns the metal's internal grain structure to flow within the contour of the caliper body. This process eliminates the stresses and interruptions to the internal grain structure that occur when machining a straight block billet. Simply stated, there is no better way to build a stronger aluminum caliper body. Caliper Dust Boots - why some brakes use them, and some do not.

This is a rubber concertina style boot which snaps into the caliper around the piston or pistons and onto the piston protrusion itself. This bellows configuration allows the piston to move in and out of the caliper without contamination from the environment. Road grime, dirt and especially moisture can corrode production type caliper pistons leading to premature failure of the piston seals rendering the caliper inoperable.

Vehicle manufacturers typically design their products around a minimum criteria list which almost never includes special materials for components such as caliper pistons. Many production style caliper pistons are therefore aluminum or other easily corrodible metals for obvious reasons, not least of which is cost. It is less expensive by far to make aluminum pistons and rubber boots than to make stainless steel pistons for example. A huge percentage of production car calipers HAVE to have dust boots or they will not last to the end of the warranty.

Aside from some of the obvious weight and capacity drawbacks of production calipers, dust boots can be a hazard to high performance drivers. Brake components are designed to convert kinetic energy (inertia of the moving vehicle) to heat energy and then dissipate that heat. The heating and cooling cycle occurs with higher frequency under spirited, or race driving conditions where it is not unusual to develop enough heat to make rotors glow red hot. Radiant and conducted heat developed under hard driving conditions can easily heat the calipers to the point where the brake fluid boils and the boots burn. Dust boots are not installed on true racing calipers.

The best solution for safe and reliable high performance calipers is to eliminate the rubber boots and build pistons from good quality, non-corroding stainless steel. Such calipers are built by Wilwood Engineering and other quality companies. Precision Brakes Company has been supplying Wilwood calipers for high performance street and race use for nearly 19 years without complaint. Our experience has been that companies who do build aftermarket calipers with dust boots make an issue of this fact to justify the exorbitant cost of their products.
Build details of the Superlite 4-piston calipers

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