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Discussion Starter #1
Hi gang.

I have a 2003 DL1000 and I noticed the other day when I had it up on the center stand that the rear brake caliper is applying a slight but constant pressure to the disk. When I spin the wheel it will only turn a half turn before stopping. I took the bike for a quick ride and then stopped and felt the disk and found that it was hot.
Does anyone know what is causing this?
Is it something that I can adjust, or is it a big bill at the shop?

Appreciate any help. Thanks!

- Chad
 

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Sounds like the brake caliper needs a strip and clean - if you're not able to do it yourself it shouldn't cost too much at the shop.
 

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All calipers/brake pads will make contact with the rotor regardless of whether the brake is applied or not, bike, car, truck whatever. So this constant contact results in some heat. Also rotating the rear tire may not spin very far due to the drag of the chain also preventing the tire from free wheeling.

So some of this is normal but if it seems to be excessive heat or friction, pulling the caliper retaining bolts and cleaning the rubber seals around the caliper, these have folds that can retain dirt and prevent complete retraction.

Applying a small amount of grease to the pins that loctate the pads can prevent a dragging pad. The grease goes ONLY on the pins, not the rotor, the caliper or the pads. It is not uncommon for a pad to bind slightly on its pins and become cocked resulting in a dragging pad. Some people will even slightly bevel the edges of the pads pin holes to further prevent this possibility.

Hope this helps.
 

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I read somewhere, maybe this site, that the pads will float at speed and not make contact. The holes in rotor reportedly keep the pads from floating when the brakes are applied.

How hot is the rotor getting?
 
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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks all. It is great to be a member of a site like this 8) . The rotor does not get burning hot - but any amount of heat felt hot when I thought that the pad wasn't supposed to touch the rotor. I will keep in mind what you said next time I ride the bike and decide if it is over what would be "normal" levels.
Cheers,

- Chad
 

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The holes in a rotor, are for appearance, cooling, and allow an escape route for items cleaned &/or wiped along with relief of out gassing by very hot or very cheap pads.

As to allowing the pads to stop "floating" when the brakes are applied, this doesn't make any sense to me. It would seem to imply there is some secret force that prevents the pads from making contact unless it has a hole to escape to that is stronger than the hydralic force exterted by the master cylinder.

As to the pads floating or retracting at speed to not make contact again doesn't make sense to me, this would imply then your brakes would have a different feel and more importantly more lever travel the faster you go. IME the brakes lever travel and feel remain the same regardless of 10mph or 100mph.

Properly set up floating calipers will make contact between the pads and the rotors which will generate heat, try riding your bike for some period of time and then stop using only one set of the brakes, then touch the other rotor (the one you didn't use) and feel the heat generated just by the rotation of the rotor through the pads.
 
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Discussion Starter #7
I went for a quick ride and I think that the heat generated is probably due to the normal contact between the caliper and rotor. Thank you all for straightening this out for me.

- Chad
 
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Discussion Starter #8
MATTMAN said:
I read somewhere, maybe this site, that the pads will float at speed and not make contact. The holes in rotor reportedly keep the pads from floating when the brakes are applied.
This is the strangest statement I have ever heard! :shock:
 

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I have done reading up this as it seemed bit odd to me as well.

The thing about the pads moving away as the bike is moving seems to have no merit.

It turns out the holes in the rotors can keep the pads from floating, but only if the pads out-gas. This appears to be a heavily debated topic on the car racing forums. It seems in the old days pads gassed a bit more than they do today.
 
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Discussion Starter #10
I'm even more confused than I was before!! :eek: Out gassed?! :?:
 

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The material used to bind the friction material together when heated, today to extreme temps, previously just to normal operating temps with certain types of pads, will generate a gas or vapor from the heat cycle.

In almost no instances will someone on the street operating a late model vehicle have an occasion when their brakes pads will emit a gas, pretty much only some racing venues have this as an issue.

But I'm am still confused by the statement to the effect: that drilled rotors or the holes will not allow the pads to "float" but only if they are emitting a gas. So how does this work? The gas and the holes create a vacumn sucking the pads in?
 
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Discussion Starter #12
Well this is a lot more info than i bargained for. I would guess that if pads do emit a gas, the holes in the rotors would prevent the pads from being pushed away. If it was a solid disk, the gass would have nowhere to go, however because of the holes the gas is able to compress the air inside instead of trying to compress the steel of the rotor.... providing, of course, that there is such a thing... i only just learned about it myself...
:p

- Chad
 
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Discussion Starter #13
I had the same problem a while back. I called an expert mechanic I know that works on Suzukis. It's a common problem caused by a buildup of dirt and brake pad material on the rotor. It's barely discernable to the naked eye, and it needs to be removed as soon as you notice it, as it clogs the tiny void between the brake pad and disk, causing excess heat and premature wear.

Honda makes a great aerosol brake cleaner. Put your bike up on the center stand and spray it on both sides of the rear disk and the pad assembly. It comes out of the can in a high pressure stream that blasts away most of the junk. Then wipe both sides of the disk with a rag.

Also, do this in an open, highly ventilated area. Brake cleaner is EXTREMELY volatile, evaporating almost instantly, and the fumes will make anyone WAAAY more than light headed. If that happens, stop and take a break. Then go at it again.
 
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