How do I fix front wheel from dragging? - Honda Motorcycles - FireBlades.org
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post #1 of 11 Old 05-23-2011, 10:20 AM Thread Starter
 
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How do I fix front wheel from dragging?

HI.

I have a 1996 cbr900 and I just did a break job on it, now the front wheel is dragging. I used break kleen, I used after market pads for the front and rear. The rear brakes seems fine
How do I loosen up the pistons so that they don't hold the rotor all the time.
I can still ride it and the breaks are holding fine, but I feel as if before the break job the bike rolled a bit easier than now.

Any advise would be greatly appreciated.

Steve
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post #2 of 11 Old 05-23-2011, 10:43 AM
 
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Re: How do I fix front wheel from dragging?

Just done this job on my NC30 after standing for 18 months.
Corrosion builds up either behind the dust seal or the piston seal and grips the piston too tightly to allow it to retract slightly. Or there will be a build up of corrosion on the outside of pistons themselves.

Thing to do is remove the calipers one at a time but leave the brake lines intact and pump out the pistons one at a time using the brake lever to clean them off. Do this carefully so you do not pop out the piston and lose all the fluid.
Put a piece of wood between a pair of opposing pistons and pump out the other two to clean them off. Use brake kleen and an old toothbrush to get in to clean the exposed surface.
You can use scotchbrite but I do not know what the american version is called.
I have just done a google search and they are called Scotch Brite pads over your side of the pond. A fine pad is ideal for the piston clean.
I hope that made sense.
Tony

Last edited by TonyB; 05-23-2011 at 10:45 AM. Reason: spelling error.
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post #3 of 11 Old 05-23-2011, 11:27 AM
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Re: How do I fix front wheel from dragging?

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Originally Posted by Steve1969s View Post
HI.

I have a 1996 cbr900 and I just did a break job on it, now the front wheel is dragging. I used break kleen, I used after market pads for the front and rear. The rear brakes seems fine
How do I loosen up the pistons so that they don't hold the rotor all the time.
I can still ride it and the breaks are holding fine, but I feel as if before the break job the bike rolled a bit easier than now.

Any advise would be greatly appreciated.

Steve

Did you clean the pistons before pushing them back into the calipers?

"I won't forget that ride for a while. Maybe you're right. Living fast might be worth the final crash. Maybe that's the secret you fliers know." - Flight of the Intruder
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post #4 of 11 Old 05-23-2011, 11:29 AM
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Re: How do I fix front wheel from dragging?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyB View Post
Just done this job on my NC30 after standing for 18 months.
Corrosion builds up either behind the dust seal or the piston seal and grips the piston too tightly to allow it to retract slightly. Or there will be a build up of corrosion on the outside of pistons themselves.

Thing to do is remove the calipers one at a time but leave the brake lines intact and pump out the pistons one at a time using the brake lever to clean them off. Do this carefully so you do not pop out the piston and lose all the fluid.
Put a piece of wood between a pair of opposing pistons and pump out the other two to clean them off. Use brake kleen and an old toothbrush to get in to clean the exposed surface.
You can use scotchbrite but I do not know what the american version is called.
I have just done a google search and they are called Scotch Brite pads over your side of the pond. A fine pad is ideal for the piston clean.
I hope that made sense.
Tony

I can't see any way of getting a pad all the way around the piston though.
I use a strip of emery cloth.

"I won't forget that ride for a while. Maybe you're right. Living fast might be worth the final crash. Maybe that's the secret you fliers know." - Flight of the Intruder
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Re: How do I fix front wheel from dragging?

I sprayed break kleen on the pistons and they retracted with ease, therefore I thought that was all I had to do. Apparently not!

If I keep riding it this way can I mess the caliper up? It's not that bad, but it just feels slightly different.
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Re: How do I fix front wheel from dragging?

@Bladeracer; emery cloth is fine for someone who has some engineering experience but having seen many "cleaned" pistons that are now scrap, the adage that less is more is a safer bet for advice.

Steve,
Get the front wheel off the ground and spin it by hand. Is it difficult to turn or can you just hear the pads rubbing slightly?
If the wheel spins freely with just a slight noise from pad contact then things should be okay.
If the pads are pressing against the discs constantly then heat can build up and warp the discs.
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post #7 of 11 Old 05-23-2011, 2:25 PM
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Re: How do I fix front wheel from dragging?

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Originally Posted by Steve1969s View Post
I sprayed break kleen on the pistons and they retracted with ease, therefore I thought that was all I had to do. Apparently not!

If I keep riding it this way can I mess the caliper up? It's not that bad, but it just feels slightly different.


Brake drag is more likely to warp the discs and boil the fluid before it damages the caliper.

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post #8 of 11 Old 05-23-2011, 2:27 PM
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Re: How do I fix front wheel from dragging?

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Originally Posted by TonyB View Post
@Bladeracer; emery cloth is fine for someone who has some engineering experience but having seen many "cleaned" pistons that are now scrap, the adage that less is more is a safer bet for advice.

Steve,
Get the front wheel off the ground and spin it by hand. Is it difficult to turn or can you just hear the pads rubbing slightly?
If the wheel spins freely with just a slight noise from pad contact then things should be okay.
If the pads are pressing against the discs constantly then heat can build up and warp the discs.


I agree, but you'd have to put some real elbow grease in to actually damage the pistons with emery cloth. The worst I've seen is when somebody has scraped the pistons clean with a screwdriver or knife blade :-)

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post #9 of 11 Old 05-23-2011, 3:21 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: How do I fix front wheel from dragging?

I'm pretty sure the wheel won't spin freely as when I'm rolling on neutral I feel it slowing down, not to the point that I stop but I slow down a little. If I push the bike it moves it's not like it's difficult to move.

I would say from 1 to 10, 10 being a free spinning tire, I'm probably at a 8 or 7.
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post #10 of 11 Old 05-24-2011, 3:04 PM
 
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Re: How do I fix front wheel from dragging?

The only way to really check is to spin it by hand when the front is in the air.
If it is binding then pull out the pads and gently squeeze and release the brake lever whilst watching the pistons (do not squeeze too hard or too much) and when you release the lever the pistons should retract a small amount. Any piston that does not is the culprit.
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post #11 of 11 Old 05-26-2011, 2:07 PM
 
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Re: How do I fix front wheel from dragging?

I'm having this same problem, I just chocked it up to the new pads being thicker, i'll clean up the pistons ASAP. Thanks.
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