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Old 06-25-2005, 03:52 PM   #1
1972VegaGt
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Thumbs down Warning: Do not buy kit H416 from BATInc.net

Hey guys,
I just want to give you a heads up about BATInc.net's H416 kit for the Focus.

It does NOT fit behind my stock 16" wheels. I contacted Eric at BAT atleast three times regarding this kit, asking about fitment questions behind my stock wheels. He assured me every time I called that the kit had been tested with every stock 16" Focus wheel he had found.

So I ordered the kit. The 253mm to 300mm upgrade kit with the two-piston PBR calipers and stainless-steel braided brake lines.

Out of the box, the kit looked pretty nice. I was surprised that the parts were wrapped in UPS bags, but appreciated that the parts were packaged with the heaviest weight parts at the bottom: rotors with calipers on-top, adapters and miscellaneous hardware on top of those.

So with glee, I waited for last weekend to come. On Saturday (June 18, 2005), I started on the kit. I put my car on jackstands and removed the wheels. The first things to remove were the calipers. Since I wasn't intending to reuse the calipers or hoses I just let them hang out of the way.

After removing the calipers and rotors I spent a lot of time looking at the steering knuckles. The pictures that come with the kit are somewhat grainy but luckily I had my trusty FocusFanatics issue handy. Using a 4 1/2" grinder (I don't have a sawz-all) I cut away the top caliper mount. ( I did end up having to cut more material away later for the PBR caliper's bracket to mount onto the new caliper bracket).

Once the upper mount was cut away I removed the other 'horn' on the bottom of the steering knuckle. The material cut quickly, probably 10 minutes per side for that portion.

After measuring the distance between the strut bolt and the new caliper's mount, I drilled the knuckle with a 31/64" bit. The kit recommends at 15/32" bit, but no one in my area seemed to sell one so I settled for a bit that was 1/64" oversize (as specified in the kit, if the bolt hole was tight I could slightly enlargen it). No problems there.

Once everything was test-fitted together loosely without blue loc-tite I decided I couldn't wait to put the wheels on. I put the driverside wheel on but it didn't want to seat on the hub. I pushed and heard scratching sounds. At this point, I figured that maybe the caliper wasn't tightened down so I removed the wheel and found that I had in fact tightened everything enough.

Trying the wheel again, I made an effort to try to seat the wheel on the hub. I was able to, with some effort but found that the wheel wouldn't want to lay flat on the hub face. I figured that to be normal so I pushed and held the wheel against the hub and turned the wheel. I heard more scratching sounds and at this point I started on a tirade of expletives that would have made my grandmother do a somersault in her grave.

So I decided that if it's going to rub that I should atleast find out where. I gritted my teeth and turned the wheel, knowing that the inside of my wheel would get all scratched to hell. Then I removed it, and found that the caliper was not rubbing in just one place but more than one.

To accurately describe where it's rubbing I need to explain how the inside of the wheel looks. There is an angled flange that goes around the inside of the wheel. It is probably at a 45 degree angle or so. The caliper cooling fins are grinding on the flat part of that flat (probably 1/4" in on the flat) and the top of the front of the caliper (the front angled edge) is scraping on the wheel as well.

Another round of expletives made my grandmother do a few more somersaults.

I called BAT twice this week, trying to resolve the issue. The first time I called at 4:48PM EST and was told that the techs were gone. The second time, I spoke to I believe Eric. I explained that this kit does NOT fit my car. I also explained that I was extremely upset because I do not want to plus-size the wheels on my Focus and want to retain the stock 16s. His reply was that the kit has been "tested with all Focus 16" wheel he had found" and that the kit had worked with all of them. Their website does state this fact, requiring "16 inch wheels or larger".

Then he asked me what wheels I have, and I told him the '04 model with the slightly indented line down the center. He said, "well, we have this kit on our '01 and it works fine." Now, to be honest I could really care less if this kit fits on a 1963 MG. It doesn't fit behind MY wheels, so don't give me BS about how it fits 'your' car.

Then his advice (his great tech support) was to grind on the caliper fins until the wheel fit without rubbing. When I told him the other location of the grinding he said I should grind there too.

Now, I'm not being an [:)][:)][:)][:)][:)][:)][:)][:)][:)][:)][:)][:)]* but I truly believe that I should not have to pay $682.56 for a kit that requires "grinding to fit". Had I known that I would have to grind the piss out of my calipers I would have bought the SVT kit from a member here.

So, right now I'm in the middle of a chargeback situation with BAT Inc, as it appears I cannot use the kit with stock-sized wheels. I highly recommend to members of FocusFanatics.com that you look elsewhere for a brake upgrade kit. Customer service should go beyond telling your customers to "grind until it fits".

Ridiculous. I can provide pics upon request.
Colin


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Old 06-25-2005, 04:37 PM   #2
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provide pics cuz i wanted to do this kit plus the front kit aswell why dont you just go get some tight ass 17 bro they are the best sized rim for handling anyway plus stockers dont really look that good anyway shit
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Old 06-25-2005, 05:15 PM   #3
1972VegaGt
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Hey qweesy,
Here are the pictures you requested.

Pictures 1 and 2 show the condition of the box when it arrived. Pretty good. After first I laughed because I thought those were ricer stickers, but really it is just a well-packaged box with their logo.



Picture 3 shows the driverside caliper after grinding. It still doesn't fit so I am assuming that the fitment issue is worse than I originally suspected. I tried to take off material in a circular pattern to maintain strength. Remember the aforementioned 45 degree angle on the inside of the rim? I was trying to grind in a way to remove as little material as possible but still clear it.


Picture 4 shows one portion of the driverside rim. You can clearly see where I have been turning the wheel to determine exactly where the wheel is scraping. Keep in mind that I haven't just turned it for fun, but numerous times trying to isolate the exact location of interference.


Picture 5 shows a second portion of the wheel. In this section you can see that the wheel is also scraping closer to the front (the reverse of what the image shows). That is where the caliper is scraping on the front.


Picture 6 shows the interference just mentioned. The front face of the caliper. In fact, if you follow up my finger, the place it is worst is between my second knuckle and my third knuckle, right on the top corner.


Picture 7 shows the scraping area at the rear of the caliper. It looks nasty but if the problem had been resolved I would have ground it down very smooth with my dremel.


Picture 8 shows the passengerside setup. At this point is unmolested, until I find out what my solution will be.


Picture 9 shows the passengerside setup again. The rotors appear to have a very nice crosshatch pattern already on them. They should seat the pads nicely.


Picture 10 shows how the driverside wheel does not yet sit flush on the hub. I took this picture with my foot pushing on the bottom and my other hand pushing on the top.


Picture 11 shows what I originally wanted. A stock wheel with a massive brake behind.



Now, to answer your questions. I don't want to run larger wheels. I had a set of 18s and my car rode like a dump truck. I appreciate the increased handling from the Toyo Proxes4 tires and having just put the tires on about 10,000 miles ago I'm not itching to spend more money I don't really have in the first place. I will probably end up having to put on a set of 17s, but my 18s need to sell first.

Irregardless of the fitment issues, why should I have to put 17s on when the kit is advertised as being compatible with 16 inch wheels? Isn't that false advertisement? That's like buying a pair of shoes and then finding out that you need to buy your own glue to put the sole on.
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Old 06-25-2005, 08:02 PM   #4
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Man that really sucks.

I'm glad to hear though, I have on fleeting occasions contemplated this kit, and the 16s you have are my winter wheels, so it would be highly unfortunate to not have the brakes clear them properly!

I wish I could offer constructive help, but alas I can't...
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Old 06-25-2005, 08:26 PM   #5
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not ot be a ass... but I would think if your gonna convert to SVT brakes which that kit is.. you would need 17's. common sense on my part. even though it says wheel size 16's and up it also says check hub clearence.. its just common sense not to trust it would fit a 16 in. rim. there has to be a reason the SVTF comes stock with 17's so they could run bigger brakes and retain looks as well...

just my 2 cents...
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coming really soon: adding forced induction. havent decided which one yet but car has 112,000 miles on it so I'm trying to blow it up..lol
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Old 06-25-2005, 10:48 PM   #6
1972VegaGt
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00svtprototype,
Not to be an ass, but you are incorrect. The SVTF can run a 16" wheel without issue. Keep in mind that the 17" is the best for racing, which is what the SVTF was designed for. Additionally, why would I put an oversized Focus system on my car when for less than $200 more I can upgrade to a kit with superior brake calipers? Even you should be able to attest to the inferior quality of Ford OEM brake calipers, as I can provide pictures of my calipers that failed to float like a quality caliper would even after only 34,000 miles.

For a second, let's consider my point of view. What if you were to call me three times asking about a new ladder I'm selling. I tell you I have tested the ladder and on every test it has reached a height of 20ft. Then you buy it because you only need a ladder to go to 19 feet, and find out that the ladder doesn't reach 20ft, it reaches 18. Would you be upset? Or would you say it's "common sense" that a ladder advertised as reaching 20ft only reaches 18?

My issue is not with 'hub' clearance. Don't mistake hub clearance with caliper clearance. I have the recommended clearances. I have plenty of 'hub' and 'rotor' clearance. My issue is with the caliper clearance, something that Eric at BAT assured me three times over that I would not have a problem with. Baer doesn't seem to have a problem with putting brake templates on their site, why doesn't BAT?

Try putting a set of 16s on your car. They'll fit, so why shouldn't BATs kit not fit? There isn't a reason, especially considering I am using the same rotors you are (just the European spec ones).

Colin
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Old 06-26-2005, 04:46 PM   #7
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...have you considered 5mm hubcentric spacers ?
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Old 06-27-2005, 07:18 PM   #8
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1972vegaGt.. I understand your pain and hassle.. I wasnt trying to be a ass about that... true about your ladder example..funny btw..cute.. I got it..BAT should'nt say that 16's will fit with the kit you bought when obviously your having caliper clearence problems..

about the size of rim for racing the smaller the rim while racing the better.. less wheel to turn..thats why most racers go with a smaller size wheel and lighter when they race..better performance.. and I'm not neccessarily talking about the SVTF.. and your right SVTF can run a 16's with out problems.. buddies SVTF is sitting on them as we speak cause I have his rims...lol
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coming really soon: adding forced induction. havent decided which one yet but car has 112,000 miles on it so I'm trying to blow it up..lol
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Old 06-27-2005, 07:25 PM   #9
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and yes I did contradict myself too.. btw.. forgot buddy had 16's on his SVTF.... check install maybe you installed it wrong
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coming really soon: adding forced induction. havent decided which one yet but car has 112,000 miles on it so I'm trying to blow it up..lol
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Old 06-27-2005, 08:49 PM   #10
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that's horrible. the breaks look great though, and quite beefy.
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