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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
2004 V Star 1100 Classic

Hey guys; need some help from some of you who are way more knowledgeable about the mechanical side of the bike than I am.

Last year, I lay my bike down. Part of the repair was a replacement front master cylinder. Got the bike back and everything worked ok.'

Last week I ran up to the store and on the way home, my left front cylinder overheated, pads swelled and stopped the bike.

Got home, pulled the caliper, pistons seemed shot so bought a used caliper. Cleaned it up, got everything back together but now have a problem bleeding. I had the wife pump the lever and hold it while I opened the bleed valve. Nothing. What am I missing here? I tried opening the valve and pumping the lever, still nothing. I've bled brakes before so I'm not a total newbie.

Any suggestions would really be helpful. I know it's got to be something simple that I'm just overlooking.
 

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When I was a full time mechanic many years ago I had a caliper that wouldnt bleed and found the hose was bad and collapsed on the inside and very minimal fluid would come out if at all. You couldnt even tell the hose was bad to look at it but thats what it was.
 

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Take the lines off the calipers and the top off the master cylinder and let them gravity feed over night. Rubber band the lever in. As posted above, if you get no fluid, you have a line issue. I'm not familiar with your exact bike. Do you have one line from the master cylinder to a "T" then to the calipers?
 

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Like mentioned above, you've either got a bad hose or an big air bubble.

If what you're saying is true....that the calipers got so hot it burned the pads bad enough to get them distort, you had enough heat to ruin a lot of stuff.

Again, like mentioned above...rubber band the lever to the grip and let it sit over night with the cover off the master (put a baggie over it). That's the easiest way to bleed those double line set ups.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Thanks everyone for your suggestions. I'll try everything. Something is bound to work...hehehe

Take the lines off the calipers and the top off the master cylinder and let them gravity feed over night. Rubber band the lever in. As posted above, if you get no fluid, you have a line issue. I'm not familiar with your exact bike. Do you have one line from the master cylinder to a "T" then to the calipers?
Yes, one line into the "T" and then it splits.

You can pump the lever 10 or fifteen times and open the bleed screw then repeat a few times if that dont work loosen the mc cover and tie the lever to the grip and let sit over nite.in the morning it should be hard or firm enough to bleed.
Going out right now to try that on.

Like mentioned above, you've either got a bad hose or an big air bubble.

If what you're saying is true....that the calipers got so hot it burned the pads bad enough to get them distort, you had enough heat to ruin a lot of stuff.

Again, like mentioned above...rubber band the lever to the grip and let it sit over night with the cover off the master (put a baggie over it). That's the easiest way to bleed those double line set ups.
Actually, that is the only thing we can figure. The left rotor show evidence of heat damage. I may end up replacing that also. And one last question re; tying the brake lever in. Should I open the bleed valve all night also or does this allow the fluid to drain down while displacing the air out the top.
 

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I would not ride the bike without replaceing the brake hose. That incident happened to a new caliper, so it is very unlikely that the caliper was at fault. When the bike went down, could it have internally damaged the hose? How else does the caliper stick other than the fluid unable to return back up the hose. How old is the existing hose. I know Yamaha has liability issues, but they also reccommend very frequent hose replacements - may be for physical reasons too. It could be the best $25 you spend!

my $.02
larry
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Ya know, this is what's great about this forum and its members. Always ready to help a fellow rider.

Ok, an update. I tied the brake lever to the grip and left it over night; master cylinder open with baggie keeping dust and dirt out. Bleed tubes were closed.

This morning, I noticed just a minimal difference in the pressure but still not enough to bleed the system. I disconnected the MC, held my finger over the hole and pumped. Brake fluid squirted out so I know that is working. (it's brand new, it should.) Put one end of a plastic tube on the left bleed nipple and the other end in my mouth. Opened the valve about 14 turn and sucked. Got about 1/4 -1/2 teaspoon of brake fluid. Closed. Stumped again. NOTE: when I removed the caliper originally after it froze, I put the end of the brake hose in a baggy so it would not drip all over the lot. (live in a condo, parking lot is my garage) Next morning, there was only about 1/2 teaspoon fluid in the baggy. Should there have been more.

Question 1: if I open the bleed valve and squeeze the brake handle, shouldn't I get brake fluid pouring out of the valve? I don't. I'm starting to think Larry is correct and it's possibly a collapsed brake line/liner which is not noticeable from the outside. As stated, my bike is a 2004 and has lived outside all of its life. Covered in the rain and snow, but otherwise uncovered.

Question 2: Is it possible to force fluid up through the hose, pushing the air out the MC? If so, what's the best process?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Hinson I could not get my front an back breaks two bleed. I found this on the net an made one. It works.3/16 diameter hose an a nipple. Put the hose on the bleeder valve.
David; I did something similar with a tube and empty coffee can. Unfortunately, the tube does squeeze over the bleed valve but still allows air in. Does the rubber hose fit tighter?
 

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Since your in the process of bleeding your front system, let's try to isolate the fualty line. I would disconnect the banjo fitting at the "T" and give the handle a squeeze. If fluid comes out freely you know it's not that line or the MC. Reattatch the banjo to the "T" and disconnect the line at the new caliper and repeat the squeeze. Check for free flowing fluid. If it doesn't flow you've found the culprit. Do the same for the other side also. It's a messy process but this will tell you if your lines are bad.

Let us know how it goes.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Reverse bleed!!!!
Ken; how does one do that?

Since your in the process of bleeding your front system, let's try to isolate the fualty line. I would disconnect the banjo fitting at the "T" and give the handle a squeeze. If fluid comes out freely you know it's not that line or the MC. Reattatch the banjo to the "T" and disconnect the line at the new caliper and repeat the squeeze. Check for free flowing fluid. If it doesn't flow you've found the culprit. Do the same for the other side also. It's a messy process but this will tell you if your lines are bad.

Let us know how it goes.
Corsair; excellent suggestion. Going out to do that now.

Don't forget to check the bleeder valve for restriction. Try removing it completely.
Havoc: I did check both valves and they were clear.

Its a tight fit.I tried it the way your doing it ,an it didn't work.
OK, maybe that's my next step.

Thanks again guys; I'll keep everyone posted on my progress.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Ok, I think I may have narrowed the problem down to the brake hose between the MC and the 't' At this point, on a 10 year old bike, I think I might go ahead and replace all the hoses and the "T" unit. Question though. How do I purge the system of air when I put on new hoses. Won't I have the same problem I have now?
 

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Ok, I think I may have narrowed the problem down to the brake hose between the MC and the 't' At this point, on a 10 year old bike, I think I might go ahead and replace all the hoses and the "T" unit. Question though. How do I purge the system of air when I put on new hoses. Won't I have the same problem I have now?
Take it to a reputable motorcycle repair shop and let them do it for you. No offense, but the brake system is pretty critical...and is also one of the simplest brake systems to work on. If there is a struggle getting it right...if I were you, I'd not bet my life on it.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
i tied my handle back on a monday and forgot about it for 3 days and when i checked it, it was the hardest i ever seen,worked for me,
Tried that overnight and it didn't do a lot of good. Question though, when you tie the handle back, anything else that needs to be done. Open bleeder valves? Take top off MC, etc.?
 
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