4 Piston Brake Calipers Installed on ABS Bike - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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  #1  
Old 05-11-2011, 12:12 AM
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Default 4 Piston Brake Calipers Installed on ABS Bike, Pictures

Just finished installing as set of Tokico brake calipers on my '08 ABS and it works great, no problems that some have reported. I used a set of calipers from a 2003 GSXR 750 ($50), stock brake lines, HH rated brake pads ($42), DL1000 master cylinder($50) and SV Racing adapters ($75). The easiest way I found to install without getting to much air in the system was to install the master cylinder first. I removed the old master and keep the line pointed up to keep the brake fluid in the line. I filled the new master with brake fluid (dot4) then keeping my finger over the port worked the brake handle slowly to work out the air using my finger like a one way valve. Looking into the reservoir you can watch the ports for escaping air. Once the air is out refill then install the lid keeping your finger on the exist port at all times. Install the brake hose on the master quickly then bolt to the handle bars. I then slowly applied the master while opening the banjo bolt on the master to expel any trapped air. I did this until my handle firmed up. The key is to not stroke the piston in the master too quickly. Quick movements of the piston create small bubbles that are hard to remove. Once completed unbolt both caliper but don't remove the brake hoses. Install the SV Racing adapters and then new calipers leaving the bottom bolt out and the top bolt loose. This allows you to swing the calipers up to attach the brake hoses. Now working on one side unbolt the brake hose from the old caliper and transfer to the new. Then install the lower bolts and tighten everything up (use locktite on the bolts). I found the left side hose a tad tight but the steel end on the brake line has a small curve. I took a small rubber mallet and bent the line a touch to give me some slack. I then opened the calipers one at a time and allowed then to gravity bleed then followed up by pressure bleeding with the master cylinder.

I found the brake leaver was in the same position as the stock position and attribute this to using a DL1000 master. The DL1000 uses a larger piston and displaces more fluid for the larger calipers. My ABS brakes seem to work the same as before. Braking effort is reduce but not as much as I was anticipating. Still not sport bike brakes. I would say maybe 30-40% reduction in brake leaver effort but in fairness my stock calipers had HH pads installed. Maybe once the new brake pads wear in the effort will reduce further. I've only have about 50 mile since the work. Braking distances should be very similar, why wouldn't it be, just the brake effort at the leaver is less. Would I do this again. YES. The lighter brake leaver is a nice touch. So if you have a ABS bike and were nervous about doing the mod, don't be. For a total investment of $200-250 it's worth it.

Just a couple of pointers. Pick up low mileage, new looking calipers so you don't have to mess around rebuilding them. Flush them out with brake fluid. Carefully bend the left brake hose steel line off the caliper to give yourself a little slack (ABS bike only). Change the master first, bleed then the caliper. Less air means easier bleeding. Use locktite. If someone wants pictures let me know.

Here are the pictures I promised. Sorry but no pictures of the actual work.



DL1000 master is identical to the 650 other than piston size.




You can see the small curve in the brake line. This is after I tweaked it a bit to give the stock line some slack.


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Old 05-11-2011, 12:13 PM
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Nice write-up, RB! I've done a similar mod, only I used a radial M/C off a GSX-R 750. Similar results but the 750 M/C isn't compatible with the factory hand guards. Just yesterday, I scored an '06 Wee M/C off fleabay and look forward to warmer hands while I await the rumored arrival of warmer weather here in the NW.

BTW, I'll have the radial M/C available once the 'new' one is installed and will post it here first. Interested parties contact me via PM.
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Old 05-11-2011, 01:10 PM
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Sounds cool - Please post pictures...
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Old 05-11-2011, 01:22 PM
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What did you end up paying for the '06 master? I looked for about 3 months before I found one at a reasonable price in good condition. Did you end up tweaking the left brake hose? Will post pics tonight.
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Last edited by Ruggybuggy; 05-11-2011 at 01:29 PM.
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Old 05-12-2011, 03:19 AM
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I was wondering if the 4 pot conversion would work on a ABS. My chief concern would be the larger volume of fluid moving around in the system. If the ABS system works by allowing fluid to 'release' from the calipers, would the additional volume cause issues?

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Old 05-12-2011, 07:53 AM
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My bike is ABS and the conversion works fine. Did you read my post?
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Old 05-12-2011, 10:44 AM
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Hydraulic brakes work because brake fluid is not compressible. Volume doesn't matter.
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Old 05-12-2011, 01:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greywolf View Post
Hydraulic brakes work because brake fluid is not compressible. Volume doesn't matter.
From my own personal experience with the 4 pots on an ABS bike the ABS does work but the increased volume does seem to effect the speed at which the ABS responds compared to stock. I've had at least 2 instances where I thought the ABS should have kicked in earlier.

1 was while practicing emergency stop around the neighborhood when I was able to get the rear end off the ground momentarily.

2 was what felt like an actual front wheel lock under real world conditions. 45mph speed limit and light turned yellow as I was approaching. I was too far to make it, but too close to stop slowly. It was wet and I felt the front end dive to the left. I don't know if I was a full on wheel lock a tar snake or paint, but it surprised me regardless as I would have expected the ABS to kick in prior to the wheel moving laterally. I release and re-applied and all was good.

4 pot calipers with stock 07 M/C
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Old 05-12-2011, 01:30 PM
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ABS will not prevent a stoppie. The manual even warns of it.

ABS does not always prevent a wheel lock but automatically eases the brake when it happens to get traction back.

The stock ABS brakes act the same way. See the slow motion section of this video.

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Old 05-12-2011, 01:49 PM
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Pat you are very much right on both accounts, but what I was describing were very noticeable changes from the stock calipers. The stoppies I was experiencing were not the type shown in the video. According to my wife who was riding behind me she could see an air between the rear tire and the ground. Upon reaching a stop I could also feel the rear end drop quite hard compared to the usual weight shift that happens after heavy braking.

This was my first clue that the ABS while still functioning was not reacting quite as the same as it did with the 2 pot calipers. It's also possible that the increase stopping power from the 4 pots in ables you to brake right up to the threshold of the ABS system
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