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Old 01-28-2012, 07:55 PM   #1
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Brake experts... advice needed... lever doesn't return all the way...

OK... I've been fighting with this stupid brake situation the past 2 weekends...

06 CBR 600F4i... stock lines, calipers, mc, levers, ATE Super Blue dot 4 fluid, was stock pads, now carbonne loraine xb5's...

basically the front brakes would randomly almost lock up the front wheel... enough that you couldn't push the bike (but the engine could overpower and make the bike roll)...

I did tons of playing around... bled the brakes forwards and backwards (reverse fluid injection (phoenix tool)... and I'm fairly sure there is no air in the system... removed the calipers completely, cleaned and lubed the pistons (no signs of scoring or wear)... no visible signs of problems with the lines...

so basically It has come down to this.. for some reason, when released, the brake lever doesn't go ALL the way back... it goes about 95% back... but I guess that's not far enough to open back up the release valve (hole/port) in the MC... I checked the obvious... I had an aftermarket lever on and put the stock back on to be sure it wasn't the problem... the bolt/nut aren't overtorqued (I know they are supposed to be like 3 and 7 ft/lbs)... the lever can move freely by hand...

So the questions remain:
- I'm assuming its the "button" on the MC that is supposed to push the lever back out?
- Does the MC need to be replaced (the internals for it come in a kit from honda for around $50 but they aren't individually available)?
- Is it something that can just be removed/cleaned/lubed or definitely replace it?
- Is it the fluid maybe?

From the parts diagram it appears that there is a return spring in there that has maybe worn out? The lockups are completely random and when they aren't locked up the brakes bite quite nicely... thats the part that throws me off...

Or am I missing something? Like could air somehow be trapped in the MC causing the whole problem?
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Old 01-28-2012, 08:15 PM   #2
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I've seen similar symptoms from a mc that had a small piece of gunk blocking a passage.

Make sure your rotors are straight

If you tighten a pinch bolt on the front axle before you get everything lined up you can actually flex your forks a little & cause brake drag
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Old 01-28-2012, 08:23 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mammothmc View Post
I've seen similar symptoms from a mc that had a small piece of gunk blocking a passage.

Make sure your rotors are straight

If you tighten a pinch bolt on the front axle before you get everything lined up you can actually flex your forks a little & cause brake drag
I'm pretty sure forks are fine... when i spin the front wheel there aren't any spots that seem to drag.... and when I push the lever outward by hand, the calipers retract immediately and everything is fine...

the question really is, why doesn't the lever return that last 5%?

(also when I push the lever back that 5% with the reservoir cap on, brake fluid shoots up like a geyser)
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Old 01-29-2012, 12:16 AM   #4
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It sounds like gunk is clogging up your MC somewhere...
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Old 01-29-2012, 12:22 AM   #5
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I had the same exact problem on my zx6 when I installed the asv levers I had just put on.
Got sick of it, was at the track and I think his name was Brandon from p1 racing came by and fixed in less than 5 minutes.
I simply just bolted the levers on TOO tight. Try putting your aftermarkets back on, and not tighten them up so much. Then get back with results...
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Old 01-29-2012, 12:22 AM   #6
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Sounds like it's time for a MC rebuild. It sounds like something is causing the piston to bind.
May be corrosion. I have seen MCs get all nasty with corrsion before. Brake fluid loves moisture and moisture loves aluminum.
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Old 01-29-2012, 12:30 AM   #7
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+1 on MC rebuild. Take it apart first and clean. See if you can salvage the parts without having to buy new ones. If not, replace. You can get aftermarket rebuild kit from K&L supply. Might be cheaper.

Last edited by signpimp; 01-29-2012 at 12:31 AM. Reason: info
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Old 01-29-2012, 12:32 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iDreaM View Post
I had the same exact problem on my zx6 when I installed the asv levers I had just put on.
Got sick of it, was at the track and I think his name was Brandon from p1 racing came by and fixed in less than 5 minutes.
I simply just bolted the levers on TOO tight. Try putting your aftermarkets back on, and not tighten them up so much. Then get back with results...
I've swapped levers like 3x now and it does it without the lever's bottom locknut on or even the screw tightened down at all :( (and I took off the heavy waterproof lube and just put some WD40 on to test that too...

coincidentally I actually had that problem with ASV's on my 1000rr... they ended up sending me a revised lever which worked perfectly... I don't want to dump another $200 on this bike just to be sure about the levers...

I'm actually not 100% positive that these levers are stock OEM levers (I know they aren't fake pazzo's or anything b/c they are stock design but they could be aftermarket (just thinking) since I bought the bike used...

They are definitely not tightened down too much though...
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Old 01-29-2012, 12:36 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by signpimp View Post
+1 on MC rebuild. Take it apart first and clean. See if you can salvage the parts without having to buy new ones. If not, replace. You can get aftermarket rebuild kit from K&L supply. Might be cheaper.
Ya... found the K&L kit for $27... its a little cheaper than OEM and I'm sure its fine... I guess for that it'd be worth it to just replace the parts than to take it apart and then find out a piece was bad and have to reassemble and take apart again... huh?

I've honestly never had a bike this "old" (I know 2006 isn't old) but all my past bikes were purchased new... so I've never had to deal with any of this... do the parts in MC's tend to corrode/disintegrate (and therefor can be cleaned) or should I just scrap the cleaning and replace it?

Sorry if I'm nitpicking over a few bucks... just getting tired of putting money into this bike ugh
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Old 01-29-2012, 12:39 AM   #10
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You can probably clean it up but there are seals that will have to be replaced. IMHO it would be worth it to try a cleaning/rebuild before you fork out the cash to buy another MC.
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Old 01-29-2012, 12:47 AM   #11
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Quote:
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You can probably clean it up but there are seals that will have to be replaced. IMHO it would be worth it to try a cleaning/rebuild before you fork out the cash to buy another MC.
Well not a whole MC... the rebuild kit which looks like it has a spring and a few seals is $27 shipped (K&L).. and doesn't seem too hard I'm guessing...
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Old 01-29-2012, 12:58 AM   #12
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ok well I said fk it and ordered the rebuild kit... guess I'll go from there...

other thing that came to mind was the perch the lever sits in being bent or something from being overtightened in the past... but I guess I'll look into that if the MC rebuild doesn't work...

Thanks for the input everyone!
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Old 01-29-2012, 01:48 AM   #13
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Like everyone is saying...there might be a little corrosion in the form of scaling. Clean out the MC really good without scaring the walls. I am betting that the spring/seals are just sticking. I've also seen a spring that broke so it couldn't return all the way. It's a pretty easy fix. Messy, but easy. Don't let that brake fluid touch any plastic...yikes!! You might need some special pliers to get the c-clip out. Just borrow them from someone.
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Old 01-29-2012, 09:00 PM   #14
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Got snap ring pliers so I'm good on that thanks!
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Old 01-29-2012, 09:53 PM   #15
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Quote:
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Don't let that brake fluid touch any plastic...yikes!!
^^^+1
Don't let the brake fluid touch plastic or paint. It will remove it unless cleaned up immediately.
I don't know how much knowledge or experience you have in working on stuff so, no offense but...
If you are unsure how to do this you might consider taking the rebuild kit to a shop and letting them do it. I've heard brakes can be important.

Me? I don't use 'em cause they just slow you down...
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Old 01-29-2012, 11:05 PM   #16
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Do you have a stock MC for your front brakes? If that's what your running, lemme know if you need a spare or whatnot. I think I have one or two that you can have for a price....
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Old 01-31-2012, 11:27 PM   #17
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Do you have a stock MC for your front brakes? If that's what your running, lemme know if you need a spare or whatnot. I think I have one or two that you can have for a price....
ordered the rebuild kit... wouldn't buy another one of those MC's... if I did that i'd just put a 929/954 one on there and have a radial one
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