OT- Why do front brakes wear out faster than rears?

Someone asked me why their car's front brakes always seem to need replacing long before the rear brakes do.
I started to give him the old "inertial weight transfer to the front
while braking" reply and then found that it really wasn't making total sense to me.
Providing you don't drive and brake like a madman neither the front or rear tires are doing much skidding on the pavement so it's likely all four are all making the same number of revolutions while braking. So, if the brake pad areas and the piston diameters were all equal front and rear I'd expect the pad wear rate to also be equal.
It's been too long since I've done a DIY brake job and I never stopped to study the relative sizes of drums, shoes, pads and pistons back when I used to do that stuff on all our family jalopies.
Answers please?
Jeff
--
Jeffry Wisnia
(W1BSV + Brass Rat '57 EE)
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on every car I have worked on, from 1936 cadillac to a more modern 911, the front brakes are designed to absorb more energy. On cars with shoes, typically the pistons are larger diameter (for a single hydraulic system like older cars) so they get pushed harder. On cars with disk brakes the calipers are much larger diameter and the pads are larger. on cars with "real" brakes, like my 911, the difference is quite dramatic.
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