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  1. #1
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    Default Rear brake caliper on 2014 RTL at 15k miles

    I took the Cognac bike in to the dealer for a warranty repair on the broken ignition key. On the way there, the brake fluid low light came on, so I asked them to check that out.

    Got a call this morning saying the bike wouldn't be ready today as promised because they have to order a new rear caliper. Said the pads were worn down to the point of needing replacement, but they were unable to retract the caliper piston so had to order a new caliper. They also went ahead and replaced the front pads, because supposedly those were thin.

    So, for the experts out there, two questions;

    1. Does it make sense the front pads would need replacing at 15k miles (this is my wife's bike and she doesn't ride it hard, although we did a couple of trips this past winter towing trailers for about 2k miles)?

    2. Does it make sense the rear caliper piston would have seized, making it unable to retract to accommodate new pads? The mechanic said he usually is able to get the piston to retract by releasing the parking brake lever on the caliper (and maybe turning it?), but it wouldn't budge. I have a feeling he didn't know about rotating the piston itself CW, to retract the piston, although when I asked him he said he 'had tried that too' and it didn't move.

    The shop is honest and the service manager is easy to work with. He is thinking the caliper will be replaced under warranty, so cost isn't the issue for me at this point anyway (although I'm pissed they replaced the front pads without asking, which I will have to pay about $200 for).

    Any thoughts on either of my 2 questions?

    2014 RTL Magnesium & 2014 RTL Cognac
    Northern Utah in summer; Southern Utah in winter

  2. #2
    Very Active Member JKMSPYDER's Avatar
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    Default BRAKE CALIPER

    I had the same problem with my rear caliper. It would turn but not screw in. I had to tow it to the dealer and he fixed it. But another poster on here said that he used silicone spray on the piston and it screwed in. Possibly there is dirt or grit around the piston causing it to stick. Donít know if the dealer tried that. As for the front pads, I think $200 is way overpriced. I ordered my front pads from BajaRon and did them myself. The job was easy and took about 10 minutes on each side. There is a video on YouTube from GreatRides that shows how to do the front and rear pads.
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    2013 ST-S retired 1/9/16 at 25,061 miles

  3. #3
    Very Active Member trikermutha's Avatar
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    Default

    Depends on your stopping habits are..If you stop more the pads will wear faster. I drive alot and didnt change my brakes until 100000 miles. The pads wear fine but the rotors were shot. Now this was on y car and has 99% Hwy miles on it.

    If the rear doesn't turn to retract the piston there could be a problem with the caliper.

  4. #4
    Active Member Joerolwing's Avatar
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    Default Brembo brake caliper

    I replaced my pads about 15,000 also, the rear needing them, the front not so much. I had been told to use needle nose pliers to rotate the piston in, but this didn't work for me. I new they made a tool for cars so tried borrowing a kit but they were all too big, so I made one. It worked perfectly. This is only for the Brembo caliper which I think was used starting in 2013 or 2014.IMG_1653.jpg

  5. #5
    Active Member Joerolwing's Avatar
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    Default Brembo brake tool

    Quote Originally Posted by UtahPete View Post
    That is a 'cool tool'. I might just try my hand at making something like that. Do you have the specs on it?
    I started with two fender washers with. 3/8" hole, glued them together, clamped them in a mandrel mounted in a drill press, and used a angle grInder to reduce the diameter to 1 3/8". I then squared the center hole to 3/8", then drilled and tapped holes for 1/8" 1/4" long screws, each 3/8" from center on the same line drawn through the center. Next, using a 1 1/2" long 1/2" bolt, I filed the end to a 3/8" square, possibly a fraction oversized. I then cut a 1" wide, 1/8" thick angle bracket from Home Depot and cut it in half at the angle. Next, I drilled and tapped it for the 1/2" bolt. Thread the bolt through this plate then press the bolt end into the washers, making certain the two "pins" are pointing opposite the bolt.

  6. #6
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Joerolwing View Post
    I started with two fender washers with. 3/8" hole, glued them together, clamped them in a mandrel mounted in a drill press, and used a angle grInder to reduce the diameter to 1 3/8". I then squared the center hole to 3/8", then drilled and tapped holes for 1/8" 1/4" long screws, each 3/8" from center on the same line drawn through the center. Next, using a 1 1/2" long 1/2" bolt, I filed the end to a 3/8" square, possibly a fraction oversized. I then cut a 1" wide, 1/8" thick angle bracket from Home Depot and cut it in half at the angle. Next, I drilled and tapped it for the 1/2" bolt. Thread the bolt through this plate then press the bolt end into the washers, making certain the two "pins" are pointing opposite the bolt.
    Awesome. Thanks!

    2014 RTL Magnesium & 2014 RTL Cognac
    Northern Utah in summer; Southern Utah in winter

  7. #7
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    Default

    Still hoping for answers to my questions. Thanks

    2014 RTL Magnesium & 2014 RTL Cognac
    Northern Utah in summer; Southern Utah in winter

  8. #8
    Active Member Joerolwing's Avatar
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    Default Brakes

    Quote Originally Posted by UtahPete View Post
    I took the Cognac bike in to the dealer for a warranty repair on the broken ignition key. On the way there, the brake fluid low light came on, so I asked them to check that out.

    Got a call this morning saying the bike wouldn't be ready today as promised because they have to order a new rear caliper. Said the pads were worn down to the point of needing replacement, but they were unable to retract the caliper piston so had to order a new caliper. They also went ahead and replaced the front pads, because supposedly those were thin.

    So, for the experts out there, two questions;

    1. Does it make sense the front pads would need replacing at 15k miles (this is my wife's bike and she doesn't ride it hard, although we did a couple of trips this past winter towing trailers for about 2k miles)?

    2. Does it make sense the rear caliper piston would have seized, making it unable to retract to accommodate new pads? The mechanic said he usually is able to get the piston to retract by releasing the parking brake lever on the caliper (and maybe turning it?), but it wouldn't budge. I have a feeling he didn't know about rotating the piston itself CW, to retract the piston, although when I asked him he said he 'had tried that too' and it didn't move.

    The shop is honest and the service manager is easy to work with. He is thinking the caliper will be replaced under warranty, so cost isn't the issue for me at this point anyway (although I'm pissed they replaced the front pads without asking, which I will have to pay about $200 for).

    Any thoughts on either of my 2 questions?
    1. Replacing the front at 15,000 miles doesn't make sense in my mind.
    2. No

  9. #9
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Joerolwing View Post
    1. Replacing the front at 15,000 miles doesn't make sense in my mind. 2. No
    Okay, so here's the final outcome;

    1. The rear caliper piston was indeed 'frozen'. I couldn't budge it with the caliper piston tool I got from Harbor Freight. Fortunately, my Riders' Advantage extended warranty picked up the whole cost except for $50 deductible. Along with the caliper came new pads, so I should be good there for another 25k miles I think.

    2. The dealership owned up to not obtaining my approval before replacing the front brake pads and we settled on paying for just the parts (less 20% discount) and no labor.

    Complete brake job for $193 out of pocket. Not bad!

    2014 RTL Magnesium & 2014 RTL Cognac
    Northern Utah in summer; Southern Utah in winter

  10. #10
    Active Member teninospyder's Avatar
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    Default late response just FYI

    Quote Originally Posted by Joerolwing View Post
    I replaced my pads about 15,000 also, the rear needing them, the front not so much. I had been told to use needle nose pliers to rotate the piston in, but this didn't work for me. I new they made a tool for cars so tried borrowing a kit but they were all too big, so I made one. It worked perfectly. This is only for the Brembo caliper which I think was used starting in 2013 or 2014.IMG_1653.jpg
    I replaced our rear pads at approx. 21,000 and they needed it. I looked at the fronts at that time and found approx. half the new depth still there. The vertical wear lines were still very visible. Haven't changed the rears yet (now approx. 24,000). Just FYI
    Last edited by teninospyder; 07-12-2018 at 05:03 PM. Reason: left out words
    Ray & Marci
    Tenino, WA
    2014RTL Cognac
    ALWAYS ride 2 up.

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