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Discussion Starter #1
I've been reading threads and doing searches all afternoon but I haven't seen much discussion about brake fluid, other than suggesting the brakes be bled for a number of problems. I have the infamous spongy front brake lever. My first thought was to bleed the brakes so I went to a couple of auto parts stores and they weren't carrying DOT 5 anymore so I came home and started making some calls and searching the forum for info. I saw one post about using 3 or 4 and one mentioned HD had changed from DOT 5 to 4 I believe it said in '06. So I called a Dealer and an indy and they both said they use and carry 5. I finally found some in town(the dealer and indy are 80 mi. from here). I'll get it tomorrow and flush and bleed the brakes. Anyway, to get to the point, does anyone know what the deal is on DOT 5 or is there any deal. One guy said he hasn't seen it years. Thanks

Oh yeah, I'm also going to install new pads, mine are down to about 1/8". I guess that could be part of the problem with the lever but it came on suddenly. I read a lot of discussion about squealing brakes and pad reccomendations, but I didn't come up with a concensus, any suggestions? Thanks again.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks, looks interesting. I'll read it.
 

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I went to two Carquests this summer and found Dot 5. From what I read on the internet some guys who race cars like it.

But there is lots of stuff on the internet about it.

Nice thing about dot 5 since it is silicone based, it doesn;'t wreck paint. But it does attract water.

The rebuild kit for the front master is about $35. Easy to do. May want to do it. If you pull the lever in and it doesn't shoot bubbles up, it might save time to jsut replace it. PIA to bleed the front.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Thanks Joe. How ya been, man. Haven't seen you around much. Been Busy? I have. Made 3 trips to the coast the last three weekends, and doing a lot of work on the EG. Did you get to make your trip yet?

That was interesting reading. I'm thinking about rebuilding the whole system. I need pads. Maybe I'll try flushing and bleeding first. Brake fluid is about as bad as oil. Nobody agrees on anything.
 

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If you pull the lever in and it doesn't shoot bubbles up, it might save time to jsut replace it.
Do you mean replace the MC? I'm just going to rebuild the whole system.
 

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There is a rebuild kit for the master cylinders. New plunger, forget the official name and wiper seals.

I was told to look at the inside of the master cylinder for pitting. Someone said with cars, they would put emery cloth on a broom handle to clean out the bore. You want it even.


You might want to put the rebuild kit in, so you don't have to rebleed. Get some new gaskets/washers for the banjo bolt on the mc.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the advice and info, beserker. I'm thinking about rebuilding everything. I pulled the cap off the reservoir and pumped the lever. The fluid was pretty clear, but when I pumped it the fluid coming into the res looked a little cloudy. I just don't feel good about the condition of the whole system. I usually use J&P for parts, mainly because you can get tech support and they'll find what you need and get it on order for you. They do pretty good...most of the time. Any suggestions on a better source for parts. How about pads, any suggestions on the best kind or brand. In the threads I read yesterday, there were discussions pro and con on several.
 

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You can get a wheel cylinder hone for next to nothing,it will fit the bore of your master cylinder. Most important thing of all don't mix dot 5 with dot 3 or 4. Dot 5 has a higher boiling point along with the fact it doesn't hurt paint. Your brake system is sealed, so there's really no worry with moisture, however keep cap tight on your bottle. I have an open bottle that I've had for 15 years
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks Radar, I appreciate the help. I'll be sticking with the DOT5 now that I found it. I've been pricing parts. I think I'll just replace the pads and flush and bleed for the time being and see if that helps.
 

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"Jane you ignorant slut!"
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Using a brake hone lightly is fine, but if it's pitted inside replace it. I've tried to hone car cylinders to remove the pitting, it's always to much material to remove.

Some things have to be done right; and brakes are one of them.
 

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You can get a wheel cylinder hone for next to nothing,it will fit the bore of your master cylinder. Most important thing of all don't mix dot 5 with dot 3 or 4. Dot 5 has a higher boiling point along with the fact it doesn't hurt paint. Your brake system is sealed, so there's really no worry with moisture, however keep cap tight on your bottle. I have an open bottle that I've had for 15 years
Actually, one of the primary reasons to change over to Dot 5 fluid is the fact that it will not absorb moisture. The fact that it won't hurt the paint is just an added bonus. Brake fluid is Hygroscopic ... this means it can, and will absorb moisture, even from the atsmophere. The water is heavier that the fluid hence it is worked out to the calipers and because of the fact that it has a lower boiling point it can and will boil, turn to vapor and cause a low and spongy feeling and give you a less effective brake. The moisture that is absorbed will cause corrosion in the system ( don't forget the steel fittings in the brake lines ) and will tear up the bore's in the calipers and the master. If you've seen pits in any of the calipers or master do yourself ( and us too ) a favor and replace the pitted components as others have stated. Remember, if you don't have time ( and money ) to do it right you sure won't have time ( nor money ) to do it over. Ride safe brother!
 

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Dot 5 will swell some brake components

Beware of DOT 5 if you rebuild the cylinders with natural rubber components. I have an aftermarket master and put 5 in it. It worked great at first but about 2 weeks later I was having severe brake drag. The DOT 5 makes the rubber swell and then the master cylinder plunger doesn't return properly to release the pressure. I had to flush and clean entire system, replace lines & rebuild the master...again. Put in DOT 4 and all is good. Got the swelling information off the Brembo web site. Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks for the info guys. If I want to avoid natural rubber, what would I be looking for? Might be best to go with HD. J&P has Caliper rebuild kits for $45, don't know who makes them. A local indy has HD for $29, Drag Sp. for 16. I'll call the stealer tomorrow and see what they're getting for them. What about pads, kevlar, ceramic, sintered, etc. etc. which ones squeal, which ones stop better. I can't believe there's such a wide range of products and opinions.
 

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Just because your brake lever is soft, doesn't mean the pads are worn.

Lots of people like Lyndall pads they gold and black. Gold wants you to do some stops to brake them in. I got them once and black once, which doesn't require this.

I have also gotten HD. I think HD changed there pads, cause my 01s squeeked bad, newer pads haven't. I got SBD? and they squeeked awful. So for me, I am going to go with lyndall or HD.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I saw where you mentioned Lyndall in another thread, a couple of other people reccomended them, too. I checked the sight. A little pricey but that's OK if they're worth it, I might try them. Did you like the Gold or Black better? What's the difference? My pads are down to about 1/8"=.25. Manual says .04 min. That's like paper. I'm going to change them, flush and bleed and go from there. Thanks again.
 

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I saw where you mentioned Lyndall in another thread, a couple of other people reccomended them, too. I checked the sight. A little pricey but that's OK if they're worth it, I might try them. Did you like the Gold or Black better? What's the difference? My pads are down to about 1/8"=.25. Manual says .04 min. That's like paper. I'm going to change them, flush and bleed and go from there. Thanks again.
1/8 = .125.
1/4 = .25. (4 quarters in a dollar)
Love ya, brudda man.

joe
 

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Discussion Starter #19
1/8 = .125.
1/4 = .25. (4 quarters in a dollar)
Love ya, brudda man.

joe
Thanks for pointing that out, Joe. I never said I was a mathmetician. It was a typo, yeah that's what it was. LOL!!

I found a local guy with 3 sets of Lyndall Z-plus pads for his personal use, but he wasn't going to use them right away so he sold them to me and will order more. I also went to the stealer and bought kits to rebuild all calipers and MCs. My wife and I are going to take the beginner safety course next month and she's going to start riding the EG. I'll feel better if I know she has good brakes.
 

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I'm all about good brakes. A friend laughs at me because I had the brake system on my Tahoe flushed, except I did that to protect the ABS.

joe
 
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