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Old April 22nd, 2019, 12:55 PM   #1
RunningOnZero
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Front Brake Drag (1 cylinder seized)

Hey everyone so I have a 2012 Ninja 250 10k miles and after the winter I noticed that the bike has been very difficult to move even when in neutral. I brushed it off and fast forward to some riding I noticed the bikes front brake gets extremely hot after each ride. So I decided to take apart the the brakes and see whats up. Sure enough I pulled the brake lever and one 1 piston was moving (the right one) The left one just stayed there. I tried cleaning the pistons best I could and still the left cylinder wasn't moving at all. So thats where Iam at.

My question is that there seems to be some white and black stuff lining and maybe a little bit of rust? Would WD-40 or brake cleaner be something I could use to clean in the cylinder deeper? Because I wasn't able to really get to deep because the cylinder wouldn't move out. Any advice would be appreciated.



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Old April 22nd, 2019, 08:28 PM   #2
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You'll probably want to take that piston out completely and clean it. Look at youtube videos, lots of stuff there with people actually taking it apart. The big thing is not to scratch the piston when you pull it out.
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Old April 22nd, 2019, 08:34 PM   #3
RunningOnZero
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaliGrrl View Post
You'll probably want to take that piston out completely and clean it. Look at youtube videos, lots of stuff there with people actually taking it apart. The big thing is not to scratch the piston when you pull it out.
Hmmm I see. I will look into this. Thank you.
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Old April 22nd, 2019, 10:55 PM   #4
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To free up and remove stuck cylinder:

1. Squirt PB-blaster down gap between piston and brake-caliper

2. Use C-clamp and tighten on working piston to hold it in position.

3. Squeeze brake-lever to force out stuck piston

4. If piston doesn’t move, use another C-clamp on stuck piston to push it inwards.

5. Remove C-clamp on stuck piston and go back to #3.

6. Repeat steps 3-4-5 until piston is freed. Also some gentle heat from torch may help, but don’t over do it.
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Old April 25th, 2019, 09:41 AM   #5
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With caliper removed.....

use a correctly sized wooden block to stabilize (hold) the piston that is moving.....leaving the stuck piston unobstructed...then introducing powerful compressed air into the orifice where the brake line attaches...it'll pop....most violently so.

I use an old towel wrapped up over the caliper, just leaving the brake line inlet..thread visually exposed to work with.

A large, wide rubber type blow gun tip will create a "seal" at the caliper inlet.... eliminating air leakage and maximizing the force of PSI the compressor delivers.

Maybe best left to more seasoned pro's...exercise *extreme care* if using this method! It WILL hurt you without some forethought as to prevention of injury.
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Old April 25th, 2019, 12:16 PM   #6
RunningOnZero
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Thanks for the replys guys. Im going to give this a go this weekend
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Old April 26th, 2019, 10:11 AM   #7
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Here's a question for you: Have you or anyone else messed around with the components of the front brake master cylinder (located on the right-side handlebar)? I ask because there is a screwup/mistake that does actually happen occasionally on motorcycles (I've seen this situation personally).

The part inside the front brake master cylinder that transfers your hand pressure (brake level pull force) to the hydraulic piston inside the master cylinder (part #43020) can be accidentally installed backwards. When this part is installed backwards (reversed) it has the effect of preventing braking pressure from bleeding off after your hand releases the brake lever.

Long shot, I know, but it's worth checking to make sure the front brake master cylinder is assembled correctly.
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Old April 27th, 2019, 10:14 PM   #8
RunningOnZero
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greg737 View Post
Here's a question for you: Have you or anyone else messed around with the components of the front brake master cylinder (located on the right-side handlebar)? I ask because there is a screwup/mistake that does actually happen occasionally on motorcycles (I've seen this situation personally).

The part inside the front brake master cylinder that transfers your hand pressure (brake level pull force) to the hydraulic piston inside the master cylinder (part #43020) can be accidentally installed backwards. When this part is installed backwards (reversed) it has the effect of preventing braking pressure from bleeding off after your hand releases the brake lever.

Long shot, I know, but it's worth checking to make sure the front brake master cylinder is assembled correctly.
I appreciate the response. However I do not believe this is the case because the bike was perfectly before winter storage and this issue only came up after the winter. Tomorrow im going to try to bleed the system and see if that does anything. Cleaning the cylinders with a toothbrush and brake cleaner seemed to help move the piston a bit but it still stops moving after a little bit of trouble. Really trying to avoid a rebuild. Will keep you guys posted
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Old April 28th, 2019, 07:25 AM   #9
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the piston has a ring of foreign material, preventing its normal in-out movement.

the piston must be removed to clean and polish the piston and surrounding seal area minimum to restore its normal range of motion

there is no way around this, no cutting corners, no tricks, no shortcuts

You MUST remove the stuck piston to accomplish its restoration to service again

If you put it back together as is, it'll stick again.

note the pic...piston has the ring of solid goop and behind it junk. Yes extreme but a visual example of what hides on and beneath stuck pistons. Note this old Suzuki Intruder went back into service after clean and polish and in this extreme case seal replacement was called for. Yours won't be nearly as bad but the ring will be there to some degree...hence why it is sticking.
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File Type: jpg suzuk15.JPG (119.4 KB, 2 views)
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Old April 28th, 2019, 01:45 PM   #10
RunningOnZero
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ducatiman View Post
the piston has a ring of foreign material, preventing its normal in-out movement.

the piston must be removed to clean and polish the piston and surrounding seal area minimum to restore its normal range of motion

there is no way around this, no cutting corners, no tricks, no shortcuts

You MUST remove the stuck piston to accomplish its restoration to service again

If you put it back together as is, it'll stick again.

note the pic...piston has the ring of solid goop and behind it junk. Yes extreme but a visual example of what hides on and beneath stuck pistons. Note this old Suzuki Intruder went back into service after clean and polish and in this extreme case seal replacement was called for. Yours won't be nearly as bad but the ring will be there to some degree...hence why it is sticking.
I was afraid of that. Im gonna aim to get this done next week. Will report back to you guys once its done
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Old April 28th, 2019, 01:55 PM   #11
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a matter of good karma....if you are at an impasse, if so inclined ship the caliper to me, I'll pop it out for ya.

The offer is there if need be.

i'll pm you for further discussion.
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Old April 28th, 2019, 05:19 PM   #12
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Use something with better anti-corrosion abilities than brake-cleaner (which just dissolves light oil). PB-Blaster will remove rust and corrosion from piston. Squirt some in there and piston will move freely after soaking overnight.

When I managed bike-shop during university, we had lots of bikes come in with stuck seatposts. They'd be mangled and scared-up from endless twisting trying to free them up. We would just spray PB-blaster on them and let sit overnight. By next morning, 1/2 of them would have seats completely lowered by themselves after the PB-Blaster dissolved corrosion from seatpost.
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Old April 29th, 2019, 05:02 PM   #13
RunningOnZero
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
Use something with better anti-corrosion abilities than brake-cleaner (which just dissolves light oil). PB-Blaster will remove rust and corrosion from piston. Squirt some in there and piston will move freely after soaking overnight.

When I managed bike-shop during university, we had lots of bikes come in with stuck seatposts. They'd be mangled and scared-up from endless twisting trying to free them up. We would just spray PB-blaster on them and let sit overnight. By next morning, 1/2 of them would have seats completely lowered by themselves after the PB-Blaster dissolved corrosion from seatpost.
Me and my buddy are rebuilding the caliper this weekend. But I guess since I have some PB blaster sitting around Ill give this option a go and see what happen. Thanks for the tip! Ill let you know how it goes
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Old May 14th, 2019, 02:59 PM   #14
RunningOnZero
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Fixed it and got the brakes working again. Just as everyone said one of the cylinders had a ton of crap on it that had to be cleaned off. I had to pop one of the cylinders out and give a real good cleaning. Kinda messy with all the brake fluid getting everywhere but nothing to bad. Pretty much just followed the youtube video and my buddy to give me a hand, we were done in few hours. THANK YOU everyone for all your help, really appreciate it!
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Old May 15th, 2019, 07:50 AM   #15
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Yay! I'm glad you're back on the road. We took my front brake completely apart and they work much better now.
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Old May 15th, 2019, 12:40 PM   #16
RunningOnZero
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Yay! I'm glad you're back on the road. We took my front brake completely apart and they work much better now.
Ya they feel slightly better now. But thank you for your help and insight
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