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Discussion Starter #1
sold the exige and have my atom coming soon... when ordering i opted out of the parking brake $1400... but now questioning my decision while it's still at the factory.





my state does not require a parking brake as long as the brakes are in good working order....


question is, do i really need a parking brake? the high compression of the k24 means that it will never move while in R/1st... but the only thing i question is without a parking brake you can't idle without foot on brake and car in N... not that I idle and get out of the car very often anyways (valet parking, which i wont do anyways..)

i honestly was thinking of keeping a chock in the car just incase... leave in gear w/ wheel chock....
 

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I was wondering the same thing, as it relates to storing my Elise. The garage where I keep it is basically flat, so not sure whether to leave it 1st or R (doesn't seem to matter), when I store it without the parking brake.
I tried pushing the car while in gear, and it won't budge. I bought wheel chocks, but are they even necessary when parking on a flat spot?
 

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Nein Kinder
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Once the rings seat, they won't hold as much pressure in the cylinder when the engine is at rest. Using only the engine to keep your vehicle immobile means you're trusting the rings to hold enough air pressure over X hours to keep your very expensive vehicle from starting to roll into harms way (presuming it's on an incline). Once it's moving, the vehicle may keep moving if inertia is able to overcome the cylinder pressures that result from turning the engine over with fuel and ignition off.

If you do omit a handbrake or its use, make sure to put the vehicle in the gear that matches the direction you don't want the vehicle to roll (first if you don't want it to roll forward or reverse if you don't want it to roll backwards). Otherwise, running a 4-cycle engine backwards will - at first - let the valves dump the compression that might otherwise keep the vehicle in check.

Glen
 

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FYI, a parking brake is a federal requirement for new built street legal vehicles per FMVSS-135 and FMVSS-105. What you do after you buy it probably no one cares. Is the Atom considered a kit coming into the US? If it is sold as a complete street legal vehicle it must have a park brake. You may want to consider having one for future resale if it can be street legal.

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Discussion Starter #6
FYI, a parking brake is a federal requirement for new built street legal vehicles per FMVSS-135 and FMVSS-105. What you do after you buy it probably no one cares. Is the Atom considered a kit coming into the US? If it is sold as a complete street legal vehicle it must have a park brake. You may want to consider having one for future resale if it can be street legal.

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im buying rolling chassis and engine and having US end of things assemble it.. as far as florida law, what i have found states parking brake is not required in florida as long as it has functional standard brakes.

i found it before, ill have to hunt for the law requirement again..

we dont have any hills here, just debating if it's worth $1300....

the manufacture says the 11to 1 compression should mean no worries.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Can you route the e-brake cable to pull the normal brakes? So you don't have to pay for the seperate caliper, but still have some functionality.
normal brakes are pneumatic, e brakes are generally cable...

they can add e-brake calipers... similar to how lambo does it (extra 1 piston on the back) but im debating if it's even needed.
 

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I have never used the parking brake when i park. And I might add, the parking brake is not strong enough to "drive like ken block". My parking brake cant even lock up the rears on super smooth parking garage surface where i tried it. So save your money....
 

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Nein Kinder
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as far as florida law, what i have found states parking brake is not required in florida as long as it has functional standard brakes.
Here is an excerpt from Florida state law found here:

Title XXIII
MOTOR VEHICLES Chapter 316
STATE UNIFORM TRAFFIC CONTROL


316.261 Brake equipment required.—Every motor vehicle, trailer, semitrailer, and pole trailer, and any combination of such vehicles, operating upon a highway within this state shall be equipped with brakes in compliance with the requirements of this chapter.
(1) SERVICE BRAKES; ADEQUACY.—Every such vehicle and combination of vehicles, except special mobile equipment not designed to carry persons, shall be equipped with service brakes adequate to control the movement of and to stop and hold such vehicle under all conditions of loading, and on any grade incident to its operation.
(2) PARKING BRAKES; ADEQUACY.—Every such vehicle and combination of vehicles shall be equipped with parking brakes adequate to hold the vehicle on any grade on which it is operated, under all conditions of loading, on a surface free of loose material. The parking brakes shall be capable of being applied in conformance with the foregoing requirements by the driver’s muscular effort or by spring action or by equivalent means. Their operation may be assisted by the service brakes or other source of power provided that failure of the service brake actuation system or other power assisting mechanism will not prevent the parking brakes from being applied in conformance with the foregoing requirements. The parking brakes shall be so designed that when once applied they shall remain applied with the required effectiveness despite exhaustion of any source of energy or leakage of any kind. The same brakedrums, brakeshoes and lining assemblies, brakeshoe anchors, and mechanical brakeshoe actuation mechanism normally associated with the wheel-brake assemblies may be used for both the service brakes and the parking brakes. If the means of applying the parking brakes and the service brakes are connected in any way, they shall be so constructed that failure of any one part shall not leave the vehicle without operative brakes.

Looks to me like a parking brake is required.

the manufacture says the 11 to 1 compression should mean no worries.
I'd be suspicious of that claim. My Porsche (albeit 3,000 pounds) has 11:1 compression and it will definitely roll down the 3% grade of my driveway in gear (first or reverse as appropriate) without the handbrake on. I always use both the handbrake and leave it in gear to secure the vehicle. About 20 years ago, I had a brand new truck roll down this same driveway in gear - but without the handbrake on - and then cross two lanes of traffic and park itself in the ditch. Very very lucky for me, the vehicle was undamaged and it didn't hit a person or another vehicle, both of which would have been in motion and expecting my truck to stop at the end of the driveway. A handbrake would seem pretty cheap insurance if you had to defend yourself against the death of an unwitting child or injuring the occupants of another vehicle.

Glen
 

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I'm originally from the UK and I find the difference between the attitudes to what we call the handbrake is interesting.

In the UK we are taught to use the handbrake a lot. When stopped at traffic lights (signals), when hill starting, etc. In the US people rarely seem to touch it.

I first thought that this might be down to the name. When something is called a "parking brake", or "emergency brake", it suggests a very limit set of usage conditions. But now I think it's probably more down to the dominance of automatic transmissions (gearboxes) in the US that define the driving style.

At least when I learned to drive in the UK, stick shift (manual gearboxes) was the standard and we learned to drive accordingly. In fact, if you take your driving test in the UK in an "automatic", you will not be licensed to drive a "manual" - it will actually say so on your driver's license.

In the US, where manual transmissions are the minority, the driving style is defined by automatic transmissions which rarely need a handbrake.
 

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Slightly off topic: winter storage "rules" say to not engage the parking brake and to leave the car in gear. I suppose that's to not pit the rear rotors? If my car will be stored in an indoor 20oC garage, should I leave the parking brake on?
I'm worried about kids pushing the car, or it rolling by itself (the parking spot is flat). I did buy wheel chocks, but they are not very high.
 

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I haven't had an e-brake in years and don't find it to be an issue. That being said, my Exige is primarily a track car.
 

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Nein Kinder
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I'm originally from the UK and I find the difference between the attitudes to what we call the handbrake is interesting.
Less than 10% of new cars sold in the U.S. have manual transmissions. It's almost impossible to find a rental car that has a manual transmission apart from exotic sports cars.

My wife and I have always driven manuals, so we were amused to find that rental cars in Scotland were all manuals - an automatic was a special request or oftentimes not available. All 4 of our cars have manuals and are fast becoming theft-proof since much of the younger generation can't operate a stick shift.

Handbrakes on hills ... I think that technique is best reserved for starting up a 20% grade (1 foot up in 5 feet forward) like a few hills in Seattle. Most hills are easily conquered with the use of just two feet and a little practice.

Glen
 

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I use my e-brake every time I park the car, without exception.
Me too for home and at work.
At home - mainly so I can start the car to warm it up and have the lights on when I back it out of the garage (by hand), or pull it in and it is still running when I push it in.

But for any track day (which are too few between), I keep it is gear with the brake off.


For a Caterham I would think that for any autocross the parking brake may be handy to have.
 

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I haven't had an e-brake in years and don't find it to be an issue. That being said, my Exige is primarily a track car.
Have you ever experienced ICE mode on track? If you ever do and the car is rolling in reverse the parking brake may be the only thing that saves you.


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