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91 F150 Front calipers - phenolic vs steel piston?

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aribert
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Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2003 7:14 am
Location: Metro Detroit

91 F150 Front calipers - phenolic vs steel piston?

Post #1 by aribert » Fri Nov 20, 2015 8:06 am

Greetings all:

After a recent front brake pad change - the truck now pulls noticeably to the left (enough that I have to counter steer). I'm guessing that there might have been a bit of rust in the RH caliper bore that the piston is hanging up on. I went to my local auto parts store and asked for a replacement caliper. They wanted to know if my calipers had phenolic (composite plastic) or steel pistons. My current ones happen to be phenolic - but what difference does it make with replacement? Does one have a larger bore/piston dia? I kind of prefer the phenolic pistons as they will not rust but if I can get even more braking by switching over to the steel pistons then I am all over it.

The other possibility is that the RH brake hose is swelling internally and creating a constriction. I don't think that is the case. The brake hoses (and current calipers) are now 6 yrs old - I would expect that the brake hoses should be good for another 4 to 6 yrs. After all when I bought the truck, the original FoMoCo labeled 18 yr old hoses (brake, heater, rad, vac) were still functioning.
61 , Deluxe trim & original 54 yr old factory padded dash. Custom interior, stock color base/clear, 275K mi, My car for the last 47 years (OK, first decade "ownership" from the left rear seat). '78 200, 3.03 manual trans, '73 dist w/ points & TFI ign, Weber32/36, 15 wheels Image

91 F150 4.9 almost stock

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1bad6t
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Re: 91 F150 Front calipers - phenolic vs steel piston?

Post #2 by 1bad6t » Tue Nov 24, 2015 9:25 pm

Don't know about trucks...but the rear brakes on Crown Vic police cars have steel pistons and regular CV's got phenolic. It can take the heat better than plastic.

Factory parts last a lot longer than box store parts.
Jeff in Georgia
'74 Maverick 250/C4

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