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Front brake problems

Discussion in 'General R1200RS Discussions' started by folagana, Aug 17, 2017.

  1. folagana

    folagana Well-Known Member Contributor

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    Dear friends

    I have been a bit busy with the birth of my second child and therefore I did not spend time on computer or so on.

    I'm experiencing a problem with the front brakes.
    After a long ride on the pyrenees the front brake starts to tbe a bit spongy with a long lever stroke (not sure it is correct in english).

    I changed the brake fluid and the brake is no longer spongy but the lever still need at least 3 cm of stroke to take braking effect. It is the first time it happens to me and I suspect the problem could the caliper or the pump.

    I got a feedback from a guy from an italian forum that others people had the problem I mentioned.

    What is your experience?
     
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  2. Andy Griffiths

    Andy Griffiths Well-Known Member

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    Air in system after brake fluid change ?
    I know that some BMWs actually have three circuits with a separate one for ABS and this can require special toll to bleed.
     
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  3. 10puzzler

    10puzzler Member

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    Did you mean tool Andy :D . Had this problem with K1300S changed brake fluids.Done at BMW dealer because of abs pump.Hard to get air out without vacuum pump.Hope this helps. Only ever happened in alps on switch backs.
     
  4. Andy Griffiths

    Andy Griffiths Well-Known Member

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    Toll as in it seems expensive , but tool as in -I am- and you're right !!

    To Folgana - I think the Pyrenees part is relevant , lots of braking leading to see fade
     
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  5. 10puzzler

    10puzzler Member

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    Happy Days :D:D:D:D
     
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  6. Bravo

    Bravo Plenty in the tank. Contributor

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    I find its always spongy until it's had a long stroke.:)
     
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  7. folagana

    folagana Well-Known Member Contributor

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    well I know the ABS circuit must be bleeded by the dealer or with a GS911, anyway I just checked the pistons and it seems they are not moving all contemporarely, one or two on the left side are moving a bit later.
     
  8. Andy Griffiths

    Andy Griffiths Well-Known Member

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    You never disappoint - how is the treatment going?:)
     
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  9. Richard230

    Richard230 Well-Known Member Contributor

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    That sounds like you may have some corrosion or dirt on your caliper pistons. You may need to remove your calipers, pull the pistons and clean their exterior surfaces to get them working smoothly again. However, you might want to leave that task to a shop as getting all of the air out of the hydraulic system, once you refill the brake system after performing that work, might be a challenge.
     
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  10. folagana

    folagana Well-Known Member Contributor

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    unfortunately I do not trust them. Many times they demonstrated their ineptitude.
    I'm quite sure they will change the fluid, I'm not sure they will bleed the pump but I'm sure they will not do that.

    So, often I'm forced to find the solution by myself
     
  11. Richard230

    Richard230 Well-Known Member Contributor

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    In that case, here are a couple of things to try: First try washing the pads and calipers with soapy water, flushing with clean water, then blow drying everything and going for a ride to heat up the calipers to make sure they are thoroughly dry and to see if that helped any. That might loosen any dirt or debris that is stuck to sides the pistons. Of course that won't help if the issue is corrosion.

    If that didn't work, then remove the brake pads, place a piece of wood between the pistons to keep them from falling out. The gently squeeze the brake lever to force out the pistons slightly so that they are extended beyond their typical range with the pads in place. Then use a strip of emery paper, or some other sort of thin, slightly abrasive cloth, string, or similar material, to clean the outsides of the piston surfaces of any corrosion or debris. That should work, just be really careful that the pistons don't extend too far or their seals might be damaged.
     
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  12. Andy Griffiths

    Andy Griffiths Well-Known Member

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    Crikey, this reminds me of the story I heard about some guy doing open an appendectomy in the Australian Outback, with instructions across CB radio from the Flying Doctor:eek:.
     
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  13. GordonH

    GordonH Well-Known Member

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    ...I thought that was an everday job for Skippy......
     
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  14. Widetrack

    Widetrack Member Contributor

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    My front brakes felt firmer after the dealer did the 1st brake fluid change. I don't think $100 is too much for the change considering the complexity of the abs system.
     
  15. Bravo

    Bravo Plenty in the tank. Contributor

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    I'm getting there...... slowly.
     
  16. Andy Griffiths

    Andy Griffiths Well-Known Member

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    He's only qualified on GS models
     
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  17. folagana

    folagana Well-Known Member Contributor

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    what about the idle stroke?
     
  18. Widetrack

    Widetrack Member Contributor

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    Not much change. I call it nice and progressive. Better feel than other bikes I've had. Not" wooden" like an older Ducati.
     
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  19. Bazza Beemer

    Bazza Beemer Well-Known Member

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    When I used to bleed my car brakes I borrowed a power bleeder and that system always had one fill the system from the wheel cylinders back to the master cylinder. The brakes sure worked good after that. Does a power bleeder work in n these bikes cause I am going to change my fluid from the bleeder nipple back up to the masters. That method will force the air up and out.
     
  20. Richard230

    Richard230 Well-Known Member Contributor

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    That should be a good bleeding method to use. Naturally, you will need a helper to suck the old fluid out of the master cylinder reservoir before it overflows and makes a mess of any painted parts. However, I have never had any problem bleeding brakes using a cheap hand-operated vacuum pump and sucking the fluid out of the caliper nipple.
     
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