Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)


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alastair.kj
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Motorcycle: 1981 GL1100 Interstate

Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby alastair.kj » Mon Mar 30, 2015 8:16 pm



Here is a rather long message that I sent to RoadRogue who has helped me with some questions in the past (Thank you RoadRogue!). I figure I might as well see what you all think.
Keep in mind that I am looking to spend as little as possible.. I also need to have this bike insurable within the next two to three weeks..

Sorry in advance for the length. Ok, here's the message:

So here's my dilemma: I recently went through the process of changing my fork springs to Progressives. In doing this, obviously I had to remove the wheel. The spring installation went well, but I ran into issues when I went to reinstall the wheel and brakes. Right away I noticed that I'd have to bleed my brakes because I had removed my handlebars and I believe flopping them around a little caused some air to get into the brake lines or something and the lever had no resistance. Bled the brakes just fine.
What did get me confused was when I fully tightened the top caliper bolt on the left side caliper, it suddenly caused the wheel to seize. What I decided to do was clean out the left caliper and piston.
So I did this and it doesn't seem to have fixed the tightening caliper/seizing wheel problem, but what has happened is that I can't get the brakes bled now. I bought a mightyvac. The right caliper is fine and holds its vacuum, but the left caliper loses its vacuum at a steady rate, but only sucks air through the line, from the bleeder. I assume that I have messed up the piston seal and just have air coming through, past the piston and out the bleeder.
My question is: do you think I have to rebuild the caliper with the whole rebuild kit or should I only have to replace the piston seal (the one inside the chamber)?? I just need to spend as little money as possible these days.
Also, what might be my issue with the wheel not spinning properly? With the calipers out, looking down at the wheel, I can see clearance between the caliper mounts and the rotars so I assume they have at least the 0.7mm clearance that they require. Any thoughts on that?

Thanks for taking the time to read all that. I just like to be as clear as I can.

Cheers ya'll



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alastair.kj
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby alastair.kj » Mon Mar 30, 2015 8:48 pm

What about the banjo bolt? Any chance they could be letting air in? Would replacing the bolt or the washers do anything?
My thought is that if I were to replace the inner seal and the banjo bolt's washers then all the "possible air entrances" willing have been covered.
??

robertdawber
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby robertdawber » Tue Mar 31, 2015 9:09 pm

A couple of things come to mind right away.
The right front brake is not part of the same system as the right front. So the problem could be anywhere between the rear caliper and that front one. Assuming you checked the rear reservoir for fluid? When you removed the calipers from the wheel did you let them hang or secure them? If you let them hand and they are old you could have damaged the line.
I would check the fluid first and then seal the bleeder with sealant tape (like plumbers use) see if that helps. I also found that when using my mighty vac I had to hold the rubber onto some of the bleeders-in fact I just ordered new ones because of this...
The crush washers could be an issue, but I doubt it. (unless you had removed them)
When you do get it figured out you will need to bleed the rear as well. (you start with the left front and them move back to the rear)
Bob

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alastair.kj
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby alastair.kj » Tue Mar 31, 2015 10:57 pm

Thank you for replying
How are crush washers different from regular washers?

robertdawber wrote:The right front brake is not part of the same system as the right front.

Hmm??

My front and rear brakes are not connected..why would I need to bleed the rear brakes as well.

robertdawber
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby robertdawber » Wed Apr 01, 2015 5:33 am

They are. The right front is connected to the rear. You bleed the front right first then the back

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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby robertdawber » Wed Apr 01, 2015 6:27 am


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alastair.kj
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby alastair.kj » Wed Apr 01, 2015 9:57 am

I appreciate you taking the time to reply, but my issue is with the front left caliper.
The rear brake and the front right caliper both work fine.
But out of curiosity, can you explain to me how the front right and rear brakes are connected on an 81 gl1100? I never knew this.

Thanks

robertdawber
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby robertdawber » Wed Apr 01, 2015 11:34 am

When you say right or left-how are you identifying left or right?
I am using as you would be while sitting on the bike.
So, the right front is part of the rear master cylinder system. A line connects the two. It is a fail safe system. That way your front will have two means to stop. If the front left goes-the front right will work.

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alastair.kj
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby alastair.kj » Wed Apr 01, 2015 3:20 pm

I mean the front left caliper as seen from sitting on the bike, looking forward.

sportsfreaked
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby sportsfreaked » Wed Apr 01, 2015 3:42 pm

On the 81 gl1100i the front brakes are separate from the rear. It is not until 83 ( I THINK) that they combined the right front with the rear brake.
Thanks to all who answer and help. It is greatly appreciated!
Ed

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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby sportsfreaked » Wed Apr 01, 2015 3:43 pm

I would suggest that you rebuild the entire caliper. That way you know for sure it's rebuilt and it will work.
Thanks to all who answer and help. It is greatly appreciated!
Ed

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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby robertdawber » Wed Apr 01, 2015 8:31 pm

I didn't realize there was a difference from the 81 to the 83
Sorry about that. I would agree that rebuilding from scratch makes sense.
One thought before you do that though-check the bleeder valve. If there is a not a sufficient seal and a block you might be sucking air...just a thought.

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alastair.kj
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby alastair.kj » Wed Apr 01, 2015 11:16 pm

No worries.
That's a good idea, thank you.

sportsfreaked
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby sportsfreaked » Fri Apr 03, 2015 2:39 pm

No problem glad to help when I'm not drunk :? (just kidding) let us know how it comes out. Good luck with it. Brakes suck to bad you need them to stop... unless you have thick boots and strong legs :D . Take care ED
Thanks to all who answer and help. It is greatly appreciated!
Ed

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Johnyy Smoke
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby Johnyy Smoke » Fri Apr 03, 2015 5:53 pm

If your sucking air on the bleeder- wrap the threads with white Teflon tape, should correct it. Regards, Johnny

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alastair.kj
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby alastair.kj » Sat Apr 04, 2015 12:56 pm

Thanks everyone. I've ordered the rebuild kit just to be on the safe side.

My other issue however still persists. When I tighten the top caliper bolt (10mm) on the left caliper it causes the brakes to seize the rotor and therefore not let the wheel spin (this is while it's jacked up and I'm turning the wheel by hand.

The engine will still put enough force behind it to overcome this seizer and drive forward, but I imagine that it shouldn't have to and that can't be too good for the pads were I to ignore it.

Any thoughts?

robertdawber
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby robertdawber » Sat Apr 04, 2015 1:40 pm

Are you positive it is the correct bracket

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alastair.kj
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby alastair.kj » Sat Apr 04, 2015 3:43 pm

I'm not exactly sure what you mean.
I believe my answer is "yes".
It's all stock and I have never had this issue before with all this same hardware.

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HawkeyeGL1200
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby HawkeyeGL1200 » Sat Apr 04, 2015 4:08 pm

1100's do not have linked brakes. I'd check the seals and replace anything damaged.
I am wrong as often as I am right concerning what is wrong with someone else' motorcycle without having seen the machine in person. Guessing with limited information, as to the source of the trouble, is sketchy at best.

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Johnyy Smoke
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby Johnyy Smoke » Sat Apr 04, 2015 5:08 pm

It sounds like fork allinment ,are you sure you have proper clearance ?
Lower forks may have to be corrected. Regards, Johnny

robertdawber
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby robertdawber » Sat Apr 04, 2015 7:16 pm

alastair.kj wrote:I'm not exactly sure what you mean.
I believe my answer is "yes".
It's all stock and I have never had this issue before with all this same hardware.

I know when I first did this job I placed the bracket on wrong. This caused the disc to rub on the pads.

robertdawber
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby robertdawber » Sat Apr 04, 2015 7:21 pm

HawkeyeGL1200 wrote:1100's do not have linked brakes. I'd check the seals and replace anything damaged.

Yes-the 1983 has linked brakes.
The right front and the rear are connected.

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sleepy3103
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby sleepy3103 » Thu May 14, 2015 8:00 pm

I have a question for the OP. Do you have the TRAC forks? If you do then the problem is that your little dog bone thing that connects the caliper bolt to the TRAC bolt got flipped over. I did that to mine the first time I put the brakes back on.

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alastair.kj
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby alastair.kj » Fri May 15, 2015 11:43 am

Thanks again Sleepy.
I have already managed to get my brakes working. Now, as you know, I'm waiting on cash for SS lines. In the meantime I'll be replacing fork seals that were just delivered to my door two days ago.

Cheers

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sleepy3103
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Re: Front left brake caliper issues (need some help)

Postby sleepy3103 » Fri May 15, 2015 1:29 pm

Cool, did you find out what the issue was?




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