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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just cleaned my front calipers as per this video:


I did this last week on my wife's 650 and everything went OK. Brakes feel better, engage more linearly, etc. Tried it with my 1k tonight, and now my brakes bind BAD. Prior to cleaning, there was a little bit of rubbing.

Any ideas? At one point in the cleaning, I accidentally pushed out one of the pistons so far it was crooked (almost fell out). Could this have caused something?

I'm planning on riding through the Loess Hills tomorrow so this is really bumming me. Hopefully I can fix it tonight. Your help is much appreciated.
 

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Yes. The pistons have a square cut seal. If you pushed one of the pistons out crooked and then simply crushed it back into the bore, it could have messed up the seal, causing it to bind.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
So, I took the bike to a local mechanic. He said he took the brakes apart completely, and nothing was damaged. So he cleaned them up and put them back together. He explained to me that the wheel was rolling more freely now, but because my pads are nearly worn to the wear bars (which I already knew and was planning to replace them next spring), the brakes are still binding a little because the farther the pistons comes out, the hard it is for them to retract perfectly straight, causing the little bit of binding. But it's nothing to worry about, he said, it just needs new pads.

That information cost me $91 (2 hours of labor plus brake fluid).

When I got home, I put the bike on its stands, and binding is exactly the same as it was. I'm hoping he's right and that new pads are all I need.
 

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I don't understand. If that's what it was, while the brakes were apart, why didn't you have the mechanic throw a new set of pads on? And maybe a new set of seals, while he was at it?

The seals should be lubricated with brake fluid when the brakes are re-assembled. Was that done?
 

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Did you replace the seals yourself?

I remember buying rebuild kids to replace the seals on my MR2, no point on tearing it all apart and re-using old rubber seals.

Thats expensive information, for a job that didn't change anything, I agree with cfreger on this one
 

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I haven't watched the video, but I can see the can in the preview window. Never use brake clean on the rubber components in your brakes is the best advice I can give.
Brakeclean doesn't harm rubber. I use it everyday. I run my own auto shop. If brakeclean weren't supposed to be used to clean brakes and brakeparts do you think they would call it brakeclean? It's perfectly safe. Now carb cleaner and carb solvent will damage rubber.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I don't know why he didn't throw new pads in. He didn't call me until he was done re-assembling, at which point he informed me "it's good now". He said no seals were bad or anything.

I'll just put new pads in myself and see if that makes the binding go away. Ugh, this mechanic ticked me off.
 

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Brakeclean doesn't harm rubber. I use it everyday. I run my own auto shop. If brakeclean weren't supposed to be used to clean brakes and brakeparts do you think they would call it brakeclean? It's perfectly safe. Now carb cleaner and carb solvent will damage rubber.
They're not all the same composition (rubber or cleaner). I've worked in brakes for a decade and I've seen plenty of cleaners rape rubber parts. If you avoid it completely, it can never happen to you, of course YMMV.
 

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It would be unusual to see it destroy brake rubbers that radically; generally it justs swells them mostly imperceptibly... which you notice on things like slide rubbers as binding, or piston seals, as binding. I have seen seals where it breaks it down, so that the seal pulls apart in thin strips, that's pretty weird though.
 
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