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Discussion Starter #1
Hi from a new member from Poland.
I recently bought a beautiful A1, with only 18.000km on the clock.
I love all about the bike but not the FRONT brakes.

First of all, the lever goes at least half the way to the handlebar, it feels a bit spongy.

I have cleaned the caliper pistons, replaced the fluid, got rid of the air and even left the lever zip-tied to the bar overnight.
Got a bit better but not as it should be.

What's the next step to cure those front brakes?
I don't want to go "changing the master and calipers to a set from Busa or..." route as I can't afford it.

However, I was wondering about changing all the seals in master and calipers.

I thought that maybe there's something wrong with the brake lever ( not enough "leverage" on the master's piston ) but it doesn't look bent or anything.
Sounds silly but I have even tried to put a piece of metal between the piston and the lever, to move the lever further away from the bar.
This did the trick, sort of.

Are the standard brake lines, afret 12 years and 18kkm, so shit?

Any suggestions would be very welcome!
Thanks

P.
 

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1st off welcome to the site
there is loads of info here and loads of people to help with it to.

search R1 Brakes On here and you may find a thread that you may want to read

along with the sticky's at the top

most of us don't like the Brakes on the 12 and either changed them or are looking to.

some work well but only because the strip and clean them a lot lol

oh and pictures go a long way on here to get people helping you :)

Photobucket is free and easy to use
 

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Dzien dobry Panu:)
Mate You should change Your lines to braided ones.
I guess Your rubber brake lines are used, they are quite old,
milleage dont have nothing to do with rubber abuse :)

Change lines to ss ones and its shoul be good.

Regards Tom, Pozdrawiam
 

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Welcome to the site.

As above a lot of us on the site don't run the 6 pots anymore as they fade fairly quickly.

If you want to keep them though I guessing your bike is around 13 years old and rubber parts perish with age, so if your still running the original rubber brake lines change to new braided and if you have the know how strip the calliper's, clean and add new seals, same with the master cylinder.

This should make a difference.

Also I think that Suzuki Bandit 4 pot callipers may be a direct replacement - But id double check on model years etc.

Use the search tool top right corner of the page and read up what others have done for ideas.
 

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New seals, polish pistons and stainless hoses, then regular cleaning with a toothbrush and high melt point grease works nicely on mine...........1 finger breaking is the name of the game :thumbup:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you for all your replies!!!

It is calipers strip & clean then, steel-braided hoses on order now.

Nest problem - I believe that the f/b discs are warped.
This is due to the fact, that under hard braking I get this little handlebar shake and brake lever starts to pulsate but not in the regular, continuos way - sometimes less sometimes more.
Plus at lower speeds, below 30 km/h, I can hear the pads "clunking" in the calipers as the warped(?) discs drag the pads up and down before getting to the higher speeds, when everything just quiets down.

Do you reckon that this may be caused by sticking pistons in the calipers and it's not the discs?
I don't have the means to check the discs for straightness unfortunatelly so I need to sort of guess before I spend the money on discs.
 

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Do you reckon that this may be caused by sticking pistons in the calipers and it's not the discs?
I don't have the means to check the discs for straightness unfortunatelly so I need to sort of guess before I spend the money on discs.

Sellotape or otherwise stick a little piece of paper to the fork leg so it is just touching the disc then spin the wheel..!!

Like this.. this was on my ZX9 .. as you can see my left side was warped and the right side was fine..

[URL=http://i730.photobucket.com/albums/ww301/fastaskwak/Red%20Ninja/023.mp4][/URL]
 

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Thank you for all your replies!!!

It is calipers strip & clean then, steel-braided hoses on order now.

Nest problem - I believe that the f/b discs are warped.
This is due to the fact, that under hard braking I get this little handlebar shake and brake lever starts to pulsate but not in the regular, continuos way - sometimes less sometimes more.
Plus at lower speeds, below 30 km/h, I can hear the pads "clunking" in the calipers as the warped(?) discs drag the pads up and down before getting to the higher speeds, when everything just quiets down.

Do you reckon that this may be caused by sticking pistons in the calipers and it's not the discs?
I don't have the means to check the discs for straightness unfortunatelly so I need to sort of guess before I spend the money on discs.
Rebuild the callipers first, it could be a sticky piston!
 

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I just rebuilt my calipers on Friday and got about 40% lever travel back. I have the 4 pot Tokicos and the left side only had 1 piston working. Took about 1.5 hrs for a good cleaning and bleed on both sides.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks again guys, you're all very helpfull!!!



Right, one of the discs is bent.
I took the calipers apart, pulled the pistons out to find that some of the seals are in bad shape.
At the end of the day, I made a decision to order as follows:

- pair of used brake discs, got it off low mileage ZX12R
- new set of caliper seals
- new front brake steel braided hoses

If this won't solve the brakes, I'll go mad ;)
 

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Thanks again guys, you're all very helpfull!!!



Right, one of the discs is bent.
I took the calipers apart, pulled the pistons out to find that some of the seals are in bad shape.
At the end of the day, I made a decision to order as follows:

- pair of used brake discs, got it off low mileage ZX12R
- new set of caliper seals
- new front brake steel braided hoses

If this won't solve the brakes, I'll go mad ;)
Do not worry.We've been doing track days with stock brakes/pads and had no trouble at all.
In fact the combo brakes/geometry/suspension is one of the best when you have to brake from full throtle to dive in on turn on the track.

Is the busa so popular as the 12 on poland?Polish like the 12!!
 

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One upgrade you should consider that's cheap to do is a radial master cylinder. Get one from a 14 or a 10R. They are all about the same from brand to brand but careful shopping will allow you to find one that's a color match to the rest of your handlebar controls from side to side. Even a 636, or a ZX6R will work. If you want to spend money there's tons of options to select from. So much so that it becomes confusing. Keep in mind that Brembo uses different Banjo bolt threads. They are fine pitch and most OEM for Asian bikes are coarse pitch. I think it's 1.5 verses 1.0 for the Brembo. It's not the end of the world I'm just trying to save you from thinking you have everything you need only to get it all torn apart and find out the hard way that you need a banjo bolt that you don't have on hand. Keep in mind the 14 and I'm sure the 14R as well are known the world over to have one of the best OEM front brake set ups to ever come stock. You can also buy an adapter bracket that will allow you to use the 14's radial calipers as well. All the 14 stuff is plentiful on Ebay and switching your 12R to that set up will indeed cure any brake issues you have or ever think you may have. Good luck I hope there's something in this post that can and will help you get the deal worked out to your satisfaction. I may have a Radial master that I've ended up with because I bought a whole front end assembly here and there for projects I have done for people. If I do have one I'll make you a deal on it that you can't possibly pass up. I get more satisfaction from helping other Kawasaki brothers solve their issues than I ever have from selling parts that I have no use for. Check your PM's
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Guys, don't know how to thank you for your help.

I still have hope for strock setup to perform well, at least on the street.

Slingshot, if I still need more / better braking power I'll go for radial master straight away, cheers.

Nucleon ST, I'd say that Busa is more popular and hold it's value a bit better than 12, I'm talking about Poland anyway.

I have tried both and with Busa - you sort of "sit in(side) of the bike and with
12 you "sit on top of it.
I'm 6,2 tall and feel more comfortable on 12, well maybe the footpegs could be a tad lower.

I should be able to put the brakes together tonoght or tomorrow the latest, keep an eye on my update.

Any tips & tricks on bleeding the brakes?
I'm thinking about pre-filling the calipers with b/fluid before I start bleeding them.

P.S. I don't own the vacuum bleeder, yet ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
I have changed the seals last night and bled the brakes.
Right after this the brake lever felt just a bit stiffer and the lever's travel has improved, again just a bit.
I have decided to leave the lever zip-tied to the h/bar overnight.
Today morning I have checked the brakes and the result is very satisfactionary, I couldn't really ask for more, job done.

Brake discs now.
I inderstand that the one I suspect is warped, has been taken off when I took the wheel for a tire change & balance.
Could I put it in "the wrong place"?
Are there any markings and is it necessary to put the disc back right in the exactly same place as it was before?

Thanks in advance.




Now what comes to mind is that the b/disc buttons may need cleaning, before I replace the rotors.
 

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Brake discs now.
I inderstand that the one I suspect is warped, has been taken off when I took the wheel for a tire change & balance.
Could I put it in "the wrong place"?
Are there any markings and is it necessary to put the disc back right in the exactly same place as it .
As long as the disc and wheel mounting surfaces are clean and flat, it doesn't matter where the disc is fitted in relation to the wheel, if there is some dirt or debris in-between the mounting surfaces, the disc will wobble. And the lever will pulse.
 

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If the disc are wavey disc or petal disc as some are called. Then they must be offset to each other. Not the same as you look at them on the bike.
 
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