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Old Streetfighter Motorcycle Forum Post 04-25-2019, 05:20 PM   #1
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Default brake pads not retracting

So... on the Secapocalypse, one of the (blue dot r1/r6) calipers locks up.

Used to be BOTH of them, but that was me running the (old stock cable actuated) MC lever overly tight, preventing fluid from going back into the reservoir when heat built up. Adjusting that properly served me well for 4,000 miles or so... right up until my trip to Wasteland Weekend, where the left(?) caliper locked its ass up while I was riding around the desert.

So now just that ONE locks up. What's the likely cause and solution?

I was thinking I'll probably have to force the pistons out with the compressed air and zip tie trick, clean and grease it all, look for corrosion, foreign material in the lines / caliper passages, etc?
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Old Streetfighter Motorcycle Forum Post 04-25-2019, 05:54 PM   #2
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Default Re: brake pads not retracting

Start out by pulling the pistons, cleaning them of any corrosion, pulling the seals, cleaning them (and the bodies) of any gunk

there's probably gunk on the seals causing sticking

A steering damper dampens steering oscillations. If it starts to leak, it may become a steering dampener. There's no such thing as a dampner.

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Old Streetfighter Motorcycle Forum Post 04-25-2019, 06:03 PM   #3
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shinyribs plays with their repper too muchshinyribs plays with their repper too muchshinyribs plays with their repper too muchshinyribs plays with their repper too muchshinyribs plays with their repper too muchshinyribs plays with their repper too muchshinyribs plays with their repper too muchshinyribs plays with their repper too muchshinyribs plays with their repper too muchshinyribs plays with their repper too muchshinyribs plays with their repper too much
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Default Re: brake pads not retracting

What Junkie said. Grit build up around the dust seal is famous for that. But sometimes age just does it's thing and the seals can start to swell on ya.
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Old Streetfighter Motorcycle Forum Post 04-25-2019, 06:50 PM   #4
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Default Re: brake pads not retracting

hows the brake hose look? if its old, it may be worth replacing. just had a Honda Element (car, i know) that locked up the left front caliper. caliper slide pins and the piston moved fine, even pressed the piston back by hand once the hose was removed. turned out the hose deteriorated internally and caused a clog. just something to check.

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Old Streetfighter Motorcycle Forum Post 04-25-2019, 07:31 PM   #5
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Default Re: brake pads not retracting

The brake hoses are the stock hoses from 1981. So yeah, if its possible for shit to shake loose off them, riding in the desert would have done that. In fact, the issues started shortly after I ripped about 15 miles down and back on a dirt "road" at speeds that tested my suspension and construction pretty severely. Bike handled better than it had rights to, but I guess I found a failure point.

Might be an interesting excuse to do the trick with running full hard lines I wanted to try...
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Old Streetfighter Motorcycle Forum Post 04-26-2019, 02:16 AM   #6
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Default Re: brake pads not retracting

As above, caliper strip and clean is step 1.

Is there anywhere the hoses could have become kinked or pinched while riding off road? The suspension will have been moving further in its travel than usual, maybe the hoses stretched? Maybe time to consider hard lines, and/or stainless lines at least for flex points.

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Old Streetfighter Motorcycle Forum Post 04-27-2019, 06:26 PM   #7
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Default

Pulled the pots out and cleaned em. The outer last 1/8" or so of each was flithy and at least one could not be forced to retract. Pad wear was also visibly uneven.

After cleaning I tested the action with air pressure, seems more even and can be easily made to retract by hand.

I don't think the hoses are an issue. The rubber looks great for its age (is why I used them) and there's no way they could kink due to supension motion because the hoses don't move relative to the brake - I could run hard lines all the way from the MC (cable actuated and fork mounted) to the brakes if I had the fittings!
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