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Offline JimClem

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Front Brakes Dragging
« on: 25 June, 2019, 02:10:37 PM »
Hi everyone, I did a quick search in the forums but didn't find anything quite like what I'm seeing with my 2007 Tiger, 22,000 miles.
I pulled both wheels to have new tires fitted and have reassembled according to the service manual I have on hand.
The front wheel turns freely until I install the brake calipers, then there's quite a bit of drag.

I have cleaned the calipers while in place with brake cleaner and a toothbrush, pads are in decent shape so I was planning on just using them.
The caliper pistons will not retract by hand, seem to be in the same position they were when I took them off the wheel but I can't be certain.
Brake fluid is at the proper level. When I installed the calipers a bit of jiggling was necessary but not any amount of force.

Should I use a C clamp to push the pistons back in to the caliper, in essence to free them up? I'm at a loss why they would be frozen or at least appear to be?
The fluid was quite dirty so it's been replaced and both calipers bled. Should I look at a caliper rebuild?

Any suggestions / observations are welcome. I was thinking of pulling the wheel and starting over but the caliper piston issue makes me think that's the problem.
I sure appreciate this forum and those that contribute, the Tiger is a terrific bike, can't wait to scrub in these new tires!

Offline DaveH

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Re: Front Brakes Dragging
« Reply #1 on: 25 June, 2019, 05:04:33 PM »
Free them off.. Remove master cylinder cap and put cloth around /over it. Pump pistons out a bit further and clean piston sides (pump lever slowly to avoid fluid spurting out of m/cyl) - use a silicone spray to lube pistons (keep away from pads though) Push them in and pump them back out slowly (not too much to force piston out) repeat until they can easily be pushed all the way back in. Do one side at a time or use dummy pads on side your not working on to prevent pistons popping out on that side.
Reassemble with pistons fully retracted and caliper bolts finger tight. Pump pistons out slowly till pads contact discs on both sides.
Torque caliper bolts up with front lever pulled back.
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Offline Puccio

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Re: Front Brakes Dragging
« Reply #2 on: 25 June, 2019, 05:26:31 PM »
I suggest to do a little ride and check for any drag when the brakes are warm, before anything else.

Online Paul2bikes

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Re: Front Brakes Dragging
« Reply #3 on: 25 June, 2019, 07:15:03 PM »
This imo is corrosion in the dust seal grooves forcing the seals tight against the pistons. The cure is to force the pistons out, need to do this gradually so they all come out together, packer between them until the last midges.

Remove the seals noting orientation, clean out the grooves, thoroughly clean the bores, smidgin of brake grease in the groove & on the dust seal, bit of brake fluid on the brake seal, then replace both seals, in correct orientation. Brake fluid lube piston & replace. Same for all pistons then bleed the system.

Done properly, you should be able to push any piston in with one finger & the others should move out freely.

See pic of the older model calliper bore.

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Online seangee

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Re: Front Brakes Dragging
« Reply #4 on: 25 June, 2019, 08:47:24 PM »
*Originally Posted by DaveH [+]
Free them off.. Remove master cylinder cap and put cloth around /over it. Pump pistons out a bit further and clean piston sides (pump lever slowly to avoid fluid spurting out of m/cyl) - use a silicone spray to lube pistons (keep away from pads though) Push them in and pump them back out slowly (not too much to force piston out) repeat until they can easily be pushed all the way back in. Do one side at a time or use dummy pads on side your not working on to prevent pistons popping out on that side.
Reassemble with pistons fully retracted and caliper bolts finger tight. Pump pistons out slowly till pads contact discs on both sides.
Torque caliper bolts up with front lever pulled back.
Yup that's the way to do them. I always keep my previous set of pads for the dummy pads. That way I don't damage my good ones and if the pistons are stiff to start off with I can use a screwdriver to push them back (via the old pads). Brake fluid also works well for cleaning the pistons. It doesn't keep once you have opened the bottle. So anything unused from the last fluid change stays as brake cleaner for the next time.
Nothing is foolproof to a sufficiently talented fool.

Offline JimClem

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Re: Front Brakes Dragging
« Reply #5 on: 25 June, 2019, 10:03:37 PM »
Thank you gentlemen for your helpful comments, I'll give it a try tonight to free up the caliper pistons and clean things up a bit more.
If that doesn't work I'll order up a rebuild kit with new seals which is probably where I'm headed anyway.

Our weather has finally gotten nice for riding to work and I have these new tires and the damn thing just looks so inviting!
I'm still talking about the bike... cheers!

Online Tigermike

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Re: Front Brakes Dragging
« Reply #6 on: 25 June, 2019, 11:47:10 PM »
You may find that it's as Paul2bikes says , corrosion in the piston bores, mine was on my rear caliper, but a new seal kit, brake pads and good clean up of the caliper fixed it. No dragging and much improved braking.
Yam RD125 DX, Kwak GPZ305, Honda CB400T, 1983 Kwak GT550, Suzuki GSF650 Bandit, Tiger 1050SE .... got there in the end.

Offline fjrod

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Re: Front Brakes Dragging - Dejs vu all over again
« Reply #7 on: 29 June, 2019, 10:47:47 PM »
My 2010 is doing the exact same thing.  It is only the right caliper and I think one set of pistons.  I would refer you back to the old posts on Sprint ST and others which had issues with the brake lever not returning like it should.  Those threads went on for years recommending changing master cylinders, brake lines, and converting to Islam.  Don't go there, more misinformation than good stuff.  The guys who actually solved the problem found it was exactly what we are talking about here.  Sticking pistons.  The best solution was to replace the pistons with Teflon coated ones for a 675.  I did all the fixes and those Teflon pistons did the trick.  Not to make fun of your problem but is nice to see someone have the same issue.  I'll be taking my right caliper off tomorrow.  I'll post what happens.  Thanks guys.

Offline Yellow Dog

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Re: Front Brakes Dragging - Dejs vu all over again
« Reply #8 on: 30 June, 2019, 01:15:09 AM »
*Originally Posted by fjrod [+]
Those threads went on for years recommending changing master cylinders, brake lines, and converting to Islam.  Don't go there, more misinformation than good stuff.

You're a funny fellow Rod  :008:
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Offline fjrod

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Re: Front Brakes Dragging
« Reply #9 on: 30 June, 2019, 09:14:16 PM »
Ok, I took off the right front caliper.  Wheel spun pretty good.  So logic says problem is in the right front caliper.  Started to fix it the easy way until a piston popped out.  Tried to go to step two and just pop the pistons out.  Putting the pistons back in after cleaning everything wasn't working out real well either.  So I split the caliper, did a very good clean job and put it back together.  I did not replace the seals because they had less than 6k miles. Since I'm now an expert, lol on cleaning calipers, I will change seals next time I monkey with brakes.  Bottom line is BETTER but far from what they should be.  Gonna check them after a thousand or two miles and see what they are like. 

Oh yea, they feel good but only ran around the block a few times.  Yes I did do a full bleed and fluid change.