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Sportster Motorcycle Tires, Wheels, and Brakes Discuss issues with Sportster motorcycle tires, wheels and brakes.

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Old 1 Week Ago
Danger_Jake Danger_Jake is offline
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Default Bannana Caliper 73 XLCH- no brakes?!?

Okay so I've got a 73 XLCH with, what I believe is a one year only bannana caliper.

Old caliper needed to be rebuilt and the bleeder screw port was stripped so got a new caliper got it mounted and and was fighting to get it bled FOREVER, no matter what I did it felt like there was still air in the lines but after reverse bleeding it I'm pretty confident that there's no air left but I still have no brake.

Put a new line on it too, I know some times they swell and absorb the pressure from the master cylinder, still no brakes.

It's got some resistance on the lever but it goes all the way to the bars.

It seems like the puck isn't traveling as far as it needs to, I'm beyond frustrated I can't figure out how a single piston caliper 3 feet of line and a master cylinder have stumped me for a week.
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well, back the pads back into the caliper and then shim with wood. try the brake, ok ??? if so, need new pads. hd does not have a brake pad wear indicator system, just a loss of stroke. next would be to observe the master when applying lever. is the fluid returning through the little hole?? if so, probably need a new cup.
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Well it's a brand new caliper (and pads), new master cylinder and a new line. There is fluid returning through the small hole, I thought that was supposed to happen?!
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in static position, the small hole towards the line going to the caliper is a common port that allows caliper fluid to return to the master. when you apply lever, the piston cup covers this hole and so it can build pressure in the caliper. in static form, this hole compensates for heat expansion. the larger hole is a return. when the piston drags backwards, the backup/seal o-ring causes a diff'l pressure that relaxes the chevron cup and the fluid will return to the master, notice the grooving on the metal piston part. if it wasn't for this, brake release would be longer since the small hole is a restriction and covered with the piston forward. when you first apply lever, you can see a brief spurt up the hole until the cup is pressure forced against the bore wall.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danger_Jake View Post
Well it's a brand new caliper (and pads), new master cylinder and a new line. There is fluid returning through the small hole, I thought that was supposed to happen?!
I also have a 1973 FLH with the banana caliper. I recently had the same issue after rebuilding the front brake system. New braided line, freshly rebuilt master cylinder & caliper. Filled it with DOT5, pumped away, and the damned thing just refused to bleed-- no matter what. Finally decided there was a void in the dry master cylinder. Took the original hose and cut a few inches off the M/C end & screwed it into the cylinder with the chopped off hose pointed up using the flared elbow. I then drilled the center of the hose out to a little less than 1/4" and twisted a small clear funnel (from my reloading bench) into the open end of the hose. I filled it half full of fluid and slowly squeezed the brake lever. Big bubbles slowly rose in the funnel-- I repeated this until the bubbles stopped and the level in the funnel would rise when the lever was squeezed and lower when released. I hooked the brake line back up and bled the system easily. When trying to bleed a completely dry system, you can get "air locks" in the reservoirs of the M/C and caliper, you just gotta' work 'em out & get fluid back into the hydraulic cylinders at both ends. Hope this helps.
Good luck,
Joe
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