1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area


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1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby Dr.Ew » Sat May 19, 2012 9:59 pm



Hi all,
I've got an 82 GL1100 Standard, with some of the original Hondaline extras (fairing/bags/etc). I've had the bike for a little over 2 weeks now, but have run into the same brake problem twice, despite replacing some items.
The first time, after test driving the night before without problems, about 3 miles into my drive home, the front brakes started rubbing, and suddenly locked up the front wheel at around 25mph. Bike slid and tipped, but no real damage. Of course, the front brakes were quite hot, brake handle hard as a rock. So, we parked it, got the trailer, and hauled it home. In the hour that passed while we picked up the trailer, everything cooled and the front wheel could spin freely again.
Once I got it home, I replaced the front brakes (which were almost completely worn to the pads). Flushed out the brake lines, bled the lines, got everything all set back up, and the bike rode just fine. I tried numerous things to test that front brake, but didn't give me any trouble. Friday night I rode almost 80 miles, taking the scenic routes, lots of stop and go riding, and not a single problem or even a hint of one...
... until today, an 80* day, I started it up, rode less than 2 miles, when I smelled hot brakes. Checked again, and they were compressing themselves on the disc again. Brake fluid is just where I filled it to, nothing else seems to have changed.

Can anyone give me some advice? I'm worried now, I thought I was in the clear after rebuilding them! Thanks!


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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby virgilmobile » Sat May 19, 2012 10:25 pm

Pump out all the brake fluid from the master cylinder.
Remove the cover and pry off the reservoir.
With a single wire from a wire brush,unplug the tiny bleeder hole that's just in front of the main feed hole.
Reassemble and bleed the brake fluid.

It's the bleeder hole that's plugged up,as the fluid heats,it expands and locks the caliper.
Read the How To article about master cylinder rebuilding.Any model or year is the same.
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby Dr.Ew » Sat May 19, 2012 10:42 pm

Thanks.
When I get to that bleeder hole, is it (typically) going to be visibly plugged? I saw it while replacing the pads, it looked ok then.

If that tiny hole is the likely culprit, would it be recommended to try to flush out all the fluid in the brake lines, to get rid of any other tiny bits of gunk that are just waiting to plug it? I'd rather waste 20$ on more brake fluid than have a spill at speed.
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby virgilmobile » Sun May 20, 2012 12:44 am

That tiny hole is in the master cylinder,not the caliper bleeder valve.
Once the plastic reservoir is removed from the casting,you will see the 1/8" main hole in it.The pressure relief hole is maybe 3/16" in front of it.It's in a tiny recess and usually plugged.A single strand of wire from a wire brush is about the only thing that is stout enough to clear it.Even a sewing needle is too large.
And yes,flush the whole system with new fluid when done.
Oh,and don't get any brake fluid on the paint.It will eat it right off.
Look at this post...viewtopic.php?f=11&t=46....
The master cylinder has 2 holes in the casting that can be seen and cleaned without removing the reservoir,some master cylinders need the reservoir removed to get to it.
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby Dr.Ew » Sun May 20, 2012 12:57 am

Sorry, I wasn't very clear when I replied. :) I know the little hole wasn't in/on the calipers, I just meant that while changing the brake pads, I had drained all the old fluid and bled new fluid into the lines, so I noticed the hole up in the master cylinder. :-)
I'll give it a thorough cleaning in the morning, and see where we stand! Thanks!
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby virgilmobile » Sun May 20, 2012 1:42 am

Great.You should be able to flush out any debris.Please don't spray any brake cleaner into the master.It can deteriorate the rubber.You can blow it out with air and flush with brake fluid.
I searched everywhere around the shop for something that would work to open the hole.WingAdmin came up with the single strand of a wire brush as the best thing to use and I also found it to be the best too.Use a pair of needle nose pliers and rotate it in the depression till it goes through.
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby Dr.Ew » Mon May 21, 2012 9:23 pm

Ok, I did a more thorough job of cleaning up the master cylinder and flushing the lines. Yep, there were many little floaters that I didn't clean out well enough before- lesson painfully learned.

While working on it, I compared my bike with the one in the "How to rebuild your front master cylinder" guide http://goldwingdocs.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=46...#p99, but am curious on two points, I'd love to get some experienced perspectives on. Maybe what I noticed is trivial, but I'd like to make sure.

1. In the walk-through in picture 8/8a, it looks as if the brake fluid return port is part of a metallic element at the bottom of the plastic reservoir, whereas the one on my 82 GL1100 appears to be molded into the plastic of the reservoir.

2. Instead of a small pinhole, mine is a fairly decent size - just a hair smaller than the main hole in the middle of the depression, and the same size as the hole on the opposite side of the depression. Is this something unique to my bike?



I'm not sure if the image will come through, if not, see the full photo here http://twitpic.com/9nu98h/full.

Any thoughts? I don't know if there is something different with this model year, or this particular '82 GL1100, or if a previous owner tried to modify it. Mainly, I'm concerned about whether it is safe, as it would seem that with "larger than a pinhole" sized brake fluid return ports, it would be even harder to let a little sludge block it, yet it has happened twice (granted, before I did a good job removing the sludge, but still). Time for new brake lines? Rebuild the calipers? Or send it to a shop and let someone qualified take a shot?

Thanks!
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby virgilmobile » Mon May 21, 2012 10:44 pm

That's not it...That is different than the one in the other how to.You are seeing the bottom holes of the plastic reservoir,not the aluminum casting.You will have to pry the reservoir off to get to the plugged hole.I don't have a picture of one so I'll sketch one out.Kinda a cross section view.Be prepared for a fight,it's gonna take a bunch of twisting and prying to get it from the "O" ring but it has to come off.
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby Dr.Ew » Mon May 21, 2012 11:59 pm

Ah, got it off! Thanks for the info!
It was made difficult by one of the original screws, which was broken, stuck into the aluminum casting - although the previous owner was kind enough to screw a larger (but 1/2 length) screw into it from the top. I got the 1/2 screw out and will take care of that tomorrow.
I was able to clean both holes, used a couple tiny syringes to aspirate some of the gunk that had settled in the return hole. If I have the brake line disconnected (and banjo bolt removed), would I be able to send a jet of compressed air through that hole (and out the end of the housing)? I guess I'm looking for a way to prove that it's open and functional
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby virgilmobile » Tue May 22, 2012 10:48 am

Absolutely.Just air only.Don't use any chemicals in there.You never flush a brake system with anything other than brake fluid.
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby Dr.Ew » Wed May 23, 2012 9:35 am

Alright! Everything worked out just fine! Thank you so much!
While the help you've given may seem small (I'll admit most of these things are stuff that I should've already known before assuming I could handle the task), you going well out of your way answer my naive questions, even to make a drawing to explain the details... I truly appreciate that!
Not to sound too sappy, but I am very glad I stumbled onto the Goldwingdocs site. Collectively, you guys are the friendly, helpful, mechanically-adept neighbors that I've never had. :D I think the world needs many more folks like you. If you ever cruise along I-94 through Southern Michigan, send me a note, I'd be happy to buy you dinner! Thanks again!
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby virgilmobile » Wed May 23, 2012 9:56 am

I'm glad it worked out for you.As individuals we cannot possibly know it all.
I say thanks to all who contribute to the site.
As a collective,we make one heck of a good repair group.
Usually somebody's done "that" before.
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby WingAdmin » Wed May 23, 2012 12:26 pm

Your little diagram is great, virgil! I added it to the How-To article for people to refer to when doing this - it really gives a good perspective on what they're dealing with.
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby virgilmobile » Wed May 23, 2012 12:40 pm

Thank you.It is a quick drawing I did in MS Paint.
I couldn't find a cutaway view anywhere on the web.
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby patbrandon1 » Thu May 24, 2012 12:03 pm

Dr.Ew wrote:Alright! Everything worked out just fine! Thank you so much!
While the help you've given may seem small (I'll admit most of these things are stuff that I should've already known before assuming I could handle the task), you going well out of your way answer my naive questions, even to make a drawing to explain the details... I truly appreciate that!
Not to sound too sappy, but I am very glad I stumbled onto the Goldwingdocs site. Collectively, you guys are the friendly, helpful, mechanically-adept neighbors that I've never had. :D I think the world needs many more folks like you. If you ever cruise along I-94 through Southern Michigan, send me a note, I'd be happy to buy you dinner! Thanks again!


Yes Dr.Ew, these guys are awesome, and modest. They have been a life saver for me as well. And it is VERY refreshing to have friendly, kind people willing to help without expecting anything in return. Try not to expect yourself to know every trick to these bikes. I have been a machine mechanic for over 30 years, and still learning new little tricks every day.

One little thing I have to offer on the brakes. WingAdmin had suggested in another post, to replace the old brake lines with braided stainless. I have done that, and it feels like it made a world of difference. Consider doing that for yourself. A little costly, but stopping is kinda critical sometimes. ;)
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby WingAdmin » Thu May 24, 2012 12:40 pm

I agree, the stainless brake lines on my 1100 made it a completely different bike. I put rather expensive Venco lines on my 1100, but I've got a set of HELUSA lines for my 1500 waiting to go on (look in the For Sale/Wanted section, there's a sticky topic at the top where you can get them), and they are much cheaper - but appear to be of equal quality.
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby GL1100Newbie » Fri May 25, 2012 12:10 am

Hi

Just went through the same problem on a 1981 gl and asked the same question. I was refered to the "how to rebuild the front master cyclinder" in the How-to Articles posted in GoldwingDocs. Clearing the return port with a fine wire worked for me.

Hope this helps

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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby IceBear82 » Wed Aug 28, 2013 10:03 pm

Im in the sam boat rebuilt both calipers n lock upstill happen now master won't push/pump n e fluid next step rebuild master..... gl1100i ...... confuse IceBear82
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby WingAdmin » Tue Sep 03, 2013 11:23 am

Interestingly enough, I had this exact same problem on the clutch of my wife's PC800 last week. It would refuse to release pressure, and the clutch would start becoming more and more declutched until with the lever out the clutch would slip so much it was unrideable. Cracking the bleeder screw would squirt out a bit of fluid and return the clutch to normal operation, for a little while.

I cleaned out the return port with a fine wire (clipped from a wire brush), bled the clutch, but it did not solve the problem.

I ended up buying a rebuild kit and rebuilt the master cylinder, cleaning it out judiciously in the process, which solved the problem.
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby virgilmobile » Tue Sep 03, 2013 12:17 pm

If enough crud accumates behind the snap ring retainer or the piston sticks in the bore,the piston may not retract far enough to expose the bleeder port to the compressed fluid.
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby 80-GL100-INT » Tue Sep 03, 2013 2:54 pm

Run up to your local music store and get a pack of .009 and .010 guitar strings (if you know someone who plays get their cuttings, used or broken ones). They work great for getting into all the "little tiny holes" in everything from carbs. to master cylinders. I have a string or a piece of a string from about .009-.1 in my box for all just occasions. They are kinda flexible and can make curves and bends, yet sturdy enough to force their way through, and the larger "wound" ones have the added benefit of scraping to help really loosen up the stubborn gunk.
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Re: 1982 GL1100 Front Brakes Locking up- Jackson, MI area

Postby Oldbear » Tue Sep 03, 2013 6:10 pm

I used my torch tip cleaning tool - its made for just that kind of small orifice that needs to be cleaned well.


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