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Old Jul 2nd 2013, 01:19 AM   #1
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How To: Rear Brake Bleed

Your rear brake shouldn't require bleeding very often, but when it does get flaccid, here's your ticket to Viagra-pedal rigidity:

On the left side of the bike under the swingarm you'll find the rear caliper. 1) Cut off the two zip ties holding the ABS line and the Brake line together, taking care not to cut either.
2) Remove the rubber nipple cover.
3) Unscrew the two bolts holding the rear caliper to the swingarm, as shown below.



4) Once off, pull the caliper back and flip upside-down:



5) Shove something solid in between the brake pads. Don't ask why, just do it or you'll be sorry. In this instance I used a allen key.



6) Attach a 12-point box-end wrench to the bleed screw and affix one end of clear tubing to nipple (reference the first pic) and shove the other end into a bottle.



Now it's time for the bleed:

1) Pump brake pedal a few times with your right foot, then hold the lever down.
2) Crack the bleed screw on the caliper with your right hand while holding the caliper upside-down with your left, as in the picture above. (If you have a harmonica, now's a good time to show off by exhaling a tune while balancing on your one free appendage.)
3) You should see air bubbles and fluid seeping out of the nipple into the hose. Close the bleed screw before the brake pedal reaches full extension.
4) Repeat step 2 &3 until all air bubbles are gone.
5) If your rear master cylinder reservoir (the fluid reservoir that sits on the right side of the bike near your ankle) gets to a min. level, top it off with fresh fluid.
6) Once finished, remove the object you placed in between the brake pads, bolt the rear caliper back onto the bike using the proper torque specs (after 25 years of wrenching I trust my internal torque wrench more than an actual one), reattach rubber seal to nipple and zip tie the brake and ABS lines back together again.
7) Press the brake pedal to make sure you didn't screw something up.

*If you want to do a fluid flush, pump a few reservoirs of clean fluid through the caliper using the technique above.
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Old Jul 2nd 2013, 04:02 AM   #2
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Easier than I thought, might do this out of tedium.
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Old Jul 2nd 2013, 05:41 AM   #3
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With how the heat (I know... What heat???) has turned my fluid black, I think I may get into the habit of flushing the system.

I would not have thought to remove the rear caliper, I would have left it in place, or better yet... Tried to leave it in place.

Glad to have instruction first and foremost.

Thanks for the write-up AntiHero!
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Old Jul 2nd 2013, 04:12 PM   #4
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I had a lot of air in my rear caliper for some reason after a track day a few weeks back. I tried bleeding the rear for 45 min. (including the banjo) with absolutely zero improvement. Flipped the caliper over and 30 seconds later I had a rear brake again.
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Old Jul 2nd 2013, 04:27 PM   #5
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Yet again AntiHero, you surprised me with the sequel I had hoped for!!! Can't wait for your next Best Seller.....

Thank you...
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Old Jul 2nd 2013, 05:19 PM   #6
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Just knocked this out, easier than it looks. Although, I still always get nervous that I didn't get rid of 100% of the air lol.
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Old Jul 2nd 2013, 09:03 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by 1199 dreamer View Post
Yet again AntiHero, you surprised me with the sequel I had hoped for!!! Can't wait for your next Best Seller.....

Thank you...
I hope his next best seller is the clutch
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Old Jul 3rd 2013, 02:04 AM   #8
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Wow...didnt think of doing it this way...much simpler and more effective...

Great tip Antihero!!!!!! Keep it coming!!!!
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Old Jul 3rd 2013, 05:09 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by AntiHero View Post
I had a lot of air in my rear caliper for some reason after a track day a few weeks back. I tried bleeding the rear for 45 min. (including the banjo) with absolutely zero improvement. Flipped the caliper over and 30 seconds later I had a rear brake again.
why do you think that is? Does it have to do with the design of the bleed valve? normally you leave caliper on and pump brake then open valve, is 1199 more complex?
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Old Jul 3rd 2013, 06:14 AM   #10
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My guess is since air travels up and the bleed screw is at the bottom, by flipping it you let the air travel to the bleed screw easier.
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