Cryo Treating Metal: Does It Work?

Above is a picture of two of my Baer Racing Rotors. On the left, this rotor was on the car for approximately 19,000 miles and 15 months of daily street driving. It was also occaisonally subjected to the odd auto-cross, and Silver State Classic Challenge race. It was used with the standard issue PBR "Street" pad, then subjected to the Performance Friction "Z" pad at about 10,000 miles. This rotor, as well as the other three on the car, were the original set as purchased from Baer in January of 1999, then cryo treated by
300 Below ( At $90 for a full set of four rotors, it was cheap insurance if it worked 1/2 as good as they claimed it did.

The rotor on the right is the replacement rotor for the first one. This rotor was purchased in June of 2000. Between June and November, it saw roughly 4,000 street miles, no racing or auto-crossing of any kind. This rotor was used exclusively with the Performance Friction "Z" pad. Out of stupidity (lack of funds was also a factor), this set was not cryo treated. As you can see, the cracks developed in a very short period of time were actually worse than the cracks sustained to the treated rotor in a fraction of the time and mileage. This rotor also caused a noticeable vibration as the pad grabbed on the edge of the crack during each rotation of the wheel.

I switched back to the rotor on the left and drove for approximately 2 weeks while awaiting arrival of the new replacement from Baer/300 Below. It is now in the car and working flawlessly. Upon inspection of the passenger side rotor today, which also was not cryoed, it too has stress cracks. We are now on to about 5,000 miles and 6 months of daily use. When I replace this one in the near future, I will have it sent right from Baer to 300 Below. $200 per rotors is just too much to throw away ever 6 months.

For those non-believers out there, I have answered the question, at least for myself. Cryoing IS worth it.

Original (cryoed) rotor after failure - ~19,000 miles/15 months

Replacement Baer rotor (not cryoed) after failure - ~4,000 miles/5 months

There really can't be much objective here I don't believe. All I know is what I have done and what has happened as a result. For me, cryoing is no longer an option, but a requirement. Replacing these brake rotors are just too expensive.