Bleeding the front brakes with a Mity Vac and banjo bleeder - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 16 Old 04-19-2011, 03:08 PM Thread Starter
JPK
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Bleeding the front brakes with a Mity Vac and banjo bleeder

I'm planning to swap out the top brake line with the longer SS line from SV Racing on my new 650 BS in order to switch the bars to the ATV high bars. I'm also planning to install a banjo bleeder on the MC. I've read tons of "how do I bleed my ABS" threads here and collected nuggets of wisdom from them, but I want to make sure that I understand the process in it's entirety and see if I'm missing any helpful tips. Here's what I plan to do:

1) pull out as much fluid as I can from the MC with a turkey baster
2) loosen the banjo bolt at the distribution block on the lower triple and drain out any remaining fluid.
3) Remove upper line and install new SS line with banjo bleeder at MC.
4) loosely install lower banjo bolt at distribution block but don't tighten down.
5) fill MC with fluid and pump slowly until fluid starts to come out of fitting at distribution block (to prime the new line), then tighten down this fitting.
6) put tube onto bleeder nipple on caliper and run it to a jar with fresh fluid.
7) Crack open bleeder nipple at caliper and pump brake lever until air is purged from plastic tube going to fluid reservoir.
8.) Bleed brakes with Mity Vac from banjo bleeder at MC.
9) Repeat on other caliper.
10) zip-tie brake lever down overnight to purge any remaining air.


Notes/Questions:

- The bike is brand new, so I'm not concerned with purging/replacing all the fluid- just getting the air out of the system. That said, I'm gathering from other threads here that it takes a LOT of purging to get all the air out of the ABS system so I'm guessing I'll end up purging most/all of the original fluid. Any suggestion on how much fluid I should buy?

- Is doing all the bleeding from the MC the recommended way, or should I first bleed with the Mity Vac from each caliper, and then do a final bleed with the Mity Vac from the MC?

- Any other helpful tips you care to share?

FWIW- I've bled brakes (both car and moto) the "old school" way before, but I haven't used a Mity Vac before, and I haven't done it on a bike with a banjo bleeder on the MC (or with ABS) before.

Thanks,
John

Last edited by JPK; 04-19-2011 at 03:38 PM. Reason: Poor spelling skills
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post #2 of 16 Old 04-19-2011, 03:26 PM
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Maybe someone can correct me if I am wrong, but I think if your goal is only to bleed the air and not replace all of the old fluid, then you wouldnt want to empty the MC before you start bleeding. I believe that is just a shortcut to replacing all of the fluid.

Edit: actually I think you are emptying it to swap the line out, so nevermind
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post #3 of 16 Old 04-19-2011, 03:29 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by farang View Post
Maybe someone can correct me if I am wrong, but I think if your goal is only to bleed the air and not replace all of the old fluid, then you wouldnt want to empty the MC before you start bleeding. I believe that is just a shortcut to replacing all of the fluid.

Edit: actually I think you are emptying it to swap the line out, so nevermind
I was under the impression that it'll all drain out if I pull the hose off, so I might as well get as much of it out first as I can. I suppose I could just let it all drain out of the lower end of the hose at the distribution block.

If this isn't the case, and I can pull the hose off without completely emptying the MC, that would be nice but I don't think this is the case.
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post #4 of 16 Old 04-19-2011, 03:34 PM
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No, I believe you are correct, I just somehow skipped over the line replacement part of your post and thought you were just bleeding air.

Someone needs to make a video of this process. I did it recently myself and it wasnt hard but there are so many posts describing the process that a simple video would be much easier for newbies to digest.
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post #5 of 16 Old 04-19-2011, 04:08 PM
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Air bubbles rise, so bleed from the bottom up. Calipers, distribution block, master cylinder. I haven't used the banjo bleeder on the mc, but if it doesn't seem to work, be patient. Take your time and keep bleeding. It'll get the air out faster than bleeding without the banjo bleeder. You can clamp down the brake lever and let it sit overnight to get remaining air out. Another technique to get the last air out is to pry the brake pads away from the discs. This gets the pistons back into the calipers and forces air up the system. Pump the brake lever several times, and you might find firmer brakes.

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post #6 of 16 Old 04-19-2011, 04:15 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PTRider View Post
Air bubbles rise, so bleed from the bottom up. Calipers, distribution block, master cylinder.
To clarify what I think you're saying- suck fluid from the banjo bolt at the MC with the Mity Vac, thus drawing fluid from the bottom (caliper bleeder) upwards. Or are you saying to bleed with the Mity Vac first at the caliper, then at the distribution block (not even sure how I'd do his) and then at the MC?

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Originally Posted by PTRider View Post
I haven't used the banjo bleeder on the mc, but if it doesn't seem to work, be patient. Take your time and keep bleeding. It'll get the air out faster than bleeding without the banjo bleeder. You can clamp down the brake lever and let it sit overnight to get remaining air out. Another technique to get the last air out is to pry the brake pads away from the discs. This gets the pistons back into the calipers and forces air up the system. Pump the brake lever several times, and you might find firmer brakes.
Thanks. Great tip.
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post #7 of 16 Old 04-19-2011, 06:50 PM
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JPK,

I would skip the 1) first step if u dont need to drain the fluid;
I would swap your step (9) and (8 - finish bleeding at the caliper on both side first before going up to the top.

keep an eye on the fluid. Squeeze the brake lever as u tighten the hose to distribution block on the final half turn to assist purging out the air.

last time i used this procedure, i wonder that all the fuss was about bleeding the ABS line- and i have done it the wrong way a couple years back - it took insanely long amount of time and fluid to get it to work. In fact there was hardly any bubbles at all this time.

another question, have u thought of when u might be doing this - on the old bar or new bar - i would do it when the old bar is on - any mess on the old bar will not transfer to the new.

cheers

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SOLD: 06 FZ1; 04 Fireblade; 02 Fireblade; 97 CBR 600
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post #8 of 16 Old 04-19-2011, 07:09 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AceRider View Post
JPK,

I would skip the 1) first step if u dont need to drain the fluid;
Makes sense, and is easier this way.


Quote:
Originally Posted by AceRider View Post
I would swap your step (9) and (8 - finish bleeding at the caliper on both side first before going up to the top.
This is the part I'm most curious about, as the whole Mity Vac/banjo bleeder concept is new to me. In "old school" bleeding the fluid would flow from the MC down to the caliper. It seems to me that small bubbles would be "swimming upstream" as they try to rise up while fluid is flowing down. It makes conceptual sense to me that if fluid was flowing up from the caliper to the MC, the whole bleeding process would be quicker and more thorough. For this reason I'm wondering if I should bleed from the calipers at all, or do all the bleeding from the MC banjo bleeder. Obviously I'd still want to do both "circuits" by flowing fluid up from both calipers, but I'm thinking that the fluid should always be flowing up from a caliper to the MC to take best advantage of the banjo bleeder. I'm not clear on the purpose of flowing fluid down from the MC to the calipers, only to then reverse it and do the final bleeding with fluid flowing in the opposite direction.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AceRider View Post
keep an eye on the fluid. Squeeze the brake lever as u tighten the hose to distribution block on the final half turn to assist purging out the air.
Great idea.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AceRider View Post
last time i used this procedure, i wonder that all the fuss was about bleeding the ABS line- and i have done it the wrong way a couple years back - it took insanely long amount of time and fluid to get it to work. In fact there was hardly any bubbles at all this time.
Hopefully mine goes as smoothly!

Quote:
Originally Posted by AceRider View Post
another question, have u thought of when u might be doing this - on the old bar or new bar - i would do it when the old bar is on - any mess on the old bar will not transfer to the new.

cheers
I was planning to do it on the new bar, but your logic makes perfect sense. I'll definitely do it on the old bar. This is all part of my "handlebar extreme make-over" with ATV High bars, Oxford grip heaters, and Barkbusters. I'd rather not get brake fluid all over all the nice new shiny bits.

Thanks for all the suggestions.
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post #9 of 16 Old 04-20-2011, 01:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JPK View Post

I was planning to do it on the new bar, but your logic makes perfect sense. I'll definitely do it on the old bar. This is all part of my "handlebar extreme make-over" with ATV High bars, Oxford grip heaters, and Barkbusters. I'd rather not get brake fluid all over all the nice new shiny bits.

Thanks for all the suggestions.
plus u will then have the longer line for the new bar.


your suggestion as to not to bother with the caliper may work - i just instintively bleed furthest away from the mc and work my way back towards MC

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SOLD: 06 FZ1; 04 Fireblade; 02 Fireblade; 97 CBR 600
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post #10 of 16 Old 02-15-2016, 09:11 PM
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SO what is the best way? I am doing the longer hose change out Saturday.
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