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Thread: Any mechanics out there? motorcycle brake problem

  1. #1

    Any mechanics out there? motorcycle brake problem

    Evening all,
    Just wondering if anyone has any ideas as to the cause of this: I noticed the other day that my front brakes were making a bit of a noise. Had a look tonight and on one only side of one caliper the pads are down almost to bare metal. They've done hardly any mileage since I replaced them in summer, and the other 3 set (including the opposite side on the came caliper) are worn as you'd expect. Any idea what would cause this rapid uneven wear?
    I've ordered new pads and also new seals etc, but I'm keen to avoid the same again!
    Thanks folks
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  2. #2
    sounds like your piston/pistons on one side of the caliper are not returning/seized.
    there could be corrosion on the piston/pistons and once they get so far out thay stay out in this position, hence the wear.
    another common problem is the piston haspicked up on one of the seals and is very slightly uneven therefore not returning.
    winter crud, old calipers.
    sounds like you need a caliper overhaul.
    depending on age/mileage/cost of seal/piston kit it may be better to buy a low mileage replacement.
    what make, model and mileage is your bike?

  3. #3
    +1 on seized /stuck pistons not traveling fully

  4. #4
    seized piston , strip it and clean it , if you are not confident doing this pay a mechanic safe.

  5. #5
    defo a seized piston,

    there is only one on each side it uses the same one to move the floating caliper thus forcing both the pads into contact with the disc.= even pressure

    remove clean and service, may need new seals and if the piston is in a bad way they can be refurbished but i would always recommend new calipers, not advised to change just the one

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  6. #6
    Yep, definitely seized piston on one side of you caliper. Strip and clean as everyone's already said, but only if you feel confident.

    What bike is it and how old?

  7. #7
    Thanks for the timely replies! I thought it would be a sticky piston, but it seemed odd to me that I hadn't noticed the brakes dragging etc. Anyway I've got the rebuild kit coming so I'll do that. Ian67, it's a 1998 GSX600F with 33k on, so parts are cheap enough and it's not complex to work on, thanks to Haynes.
    I suspect it's suffering from its daily 50 miles of motorway commuting.
    Thanks all for the advice.
    See my blog for - My kindly sponsored DSC1 course and chart my progress from deer virgin to stalking veteran
    AND my new puppy progress DIARY

  8. #8
    yamaha? by any chance. bike pistons are renowned for seizing ally calipers form salt deposits especially in damp conditions, us a small g clamp on the one side thats good and pump out and clean but you will continue with this as the pistons are chromed and get chipped also then it nicks the seal and then problems start, my fix was to machine stainless pistons or titanium ones alot harder and will stand all the crud /stones and just a clean down and they will keep being good to go, i did this on all my race bikes as well as road going machines and never had any issues again, atb wayne
    ah not a yam then,lol
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  9. #9
    yep, plenty miles on the bike to warrrant averhaul or new calipers.
    like others have said, if one piston is sticking then sooner rather than later the others will seize.
    if there is any sign of corrosion on the pistons i would change them out, it might just need seals but given the age and mileage i would expect the pistons to have corrosion unless they have been renewed before.
    not telling you to suck eggs but make sure you use enough o-ring grease on the seals when it comes to pushing the pistons back in.

  10. #10
    Two answers, you decide.
    1/ Calliper has piston/s on both of the pads (inner/outer), pistons are sticking or one is jammed solid.
    2/ Calliper has pistons on only one pad, usually the outer one, in this case the calliper pivot is seized.


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