No Front Brakes. HELP! - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 33 (permalink) Old 07-22-2011, 12:35 AM Thread Starter
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No Front Brakes. HELP!

So today i was riding home from work and realized i had no front brakes. My lever has full play and even when squeezed the whole way nothing happens. I can still roll the bike. The sight glass has a small air bubble, it has been extremely humid in wisconsin also lately. I dont know if those can cause this. Or could this be the spring in the master cylinder. I dont know much about brakes, but i know i need my front haha. Also how difficult is a rebuild if that is what is neccessary. Im planning on changing the brake fluid within the next couple of days i hope thats it. Thanks for the help Mick.
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post #2 of 33 (permalink) Old 07-22-2011, 12:53 AM
If only it had 6th gear..
 
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Does the lever feel spongy when you pull it in or normal. And even tho you can spin the tire when the brake lever is pulled does it tighten at all or no change? Sounds like maybe you've got air in the system. How it got in there is potentially another problem but air will compress and you'll have no brake action. Good way to tell is to pump the lever a few times and see if by the 2nd or 3rd time the wheel starts to lock up. If it does, top off your master and with the cover off, crack the bleeders screws on both calipers and gravity bleed them for a bit then button it up and test again. What concerns me is, if you haven't opened the master cylinder to add fluid accidentally getting air in the system then you may a problem somewhere. So even if bleeding them fixes this now, be extra aware of how its working for a while. Keep us posted.
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Last edited by DavesVulster; 07-22-2011 at 01:04 AM.
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post #3 of 33 (permalink) Old 07-22-2011, 01:21 AM Thread Starter
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My brake lever just moves freely there is no pressure at all on it. It was riding on my knuckles the whole ride home. I figured it was probably air or something. I havent opened the cover at all. How can air get into the system. Thanks Mick.
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post #4 of 33 (permalink) Old 07-22-2011, 08:23 AM
If only it had 6th gear..
 
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Air could get if a seal is going bad or porous. Usually you'd see brake fluid seeping somewhere but in some cases it could suck in a little bit of air, usually down by the wheel cylinder on the caliper, after the brake is released. The air bubble you mentioned in the glass is a sign. But your lever should still have some feel to it. If it moves freely like its disconnected, I'm thinking its your master cylinder. There's a piston in there that directly contacts the lever. It could be stuck in. Sometimes a caliper could be frozen in the open position but again you should still have feeling in the lever espescially since our bikes have dual calipers. Its more common that they freeze in the closed position, cause drag and overheat the rotor, brake fluid and everything else but I'm sure you would have noticed that. Good luck and I hope this helps. I'm sure if I've mis-stated anything someone will help out and may offer tricks to test the components that I don't know about. No brakes is scarey. Glad nothing bad happened to ya.

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post #5 of 33 (permalink) Old 07-22-2011, 10:55 AM
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Quote:
My brake lever just moves freely there is no pressure at all on it. It was riding on my knuckles the whole ride home.
Unless the brake lever tab pressing the master cylinder piston is not broken, then there is something wrong with the master cylinder itself. The master cylinder spring should return the brake lever to the released position regardless if there is air or brake fluid or both in the system.
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post #6 of 33 (permalink) Old 07-22-2011, 12:01 PM Thread Starter
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i dont know if the calipers are stuck i checked to see if they were rubbing, and no heat. If they are stuck do i just take them off and put a c clamp to them like when changing car brakes to free the piston.
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post #7 of 33 (permalink) Old 07-22-2011, 01:29 PM
If only it had 6th gear..
 
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Good point about the spring in the master returning the lever pappa. Doubt your caliper is locked. Because you can spin the wheel and you said no heat build up. Lets concentrate on the master cyl for now. Does the handle spring back even though there's no pressure. Have you opened the reservoir yet to look at the fluid?

Last edited by DavesVulster; 07-22-2011 at 02:48 PM. Reason: gd phone typos
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post #8 of 33 (permalink) Old 07-22-2011, 02:19 PM
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Another thing to keep in mind is in the heat the tube expands...this can allow the fluid level to be low, which can lead to air bubbles entering the system. Check the levels and try to bleed. Start at the master (make sure its at the correct level and pump the lever with the master cover off till bubbles stop coming up), then front left side (if sitting on bike)hose near caliper then right and refill make sure not to let the master go dry or you gotta restart the process. Use a peice of 1/8 tubing to connect to the bleed valves and let it run into a suitable jar etc.

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post #9 of 33 (permalink) Old 07-22-2011, 03:41 PM
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^^^^

x2 Just had the same problem last month. Run the tubing into a jar that is about 1/4 full of fluid. Have the jar ABOVE the caliper.

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post #10 of 33 (permalink) Old 07-22-2011, 06:04 PM
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In case you don't know, brake fluid will damage paint. It would be better to work on the master cylinder with the bike on it's center stand and the tank and fender protected from drips and spills.
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