front brake advice needed.

Discussion in 'Touring Models' started by 2001FLHT, Dec 10, 2009.

  1. 2001FLHT

    2001FLHT Member

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    2001 FLHT, I replaced the front rotors and pads and now the calipers will not completely release. They are causing the front tire to drag instead of spin freely. Any advice on how to repair these calipers or what might be wrong will be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Dr. Dolittle

    Dr. Dolittle Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

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    You might have gotten some debris into the piston area causing them to not move freely in and out as designed.
     
  3. softailhog

    softailhog Active Member

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  4. jaceddie

    jaceddie Junior Member

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    I always give them a good cleaning with brake cleaner before putting the pads on.
     
  5. NEWHD74FAN

    NEWHD74FAN Experienced Member Retired Moderators

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    Front TIRE drag?...or ROTOR/PAD dragging. No tire contact should be even "close"...if so, the wheel spacers were not put in properly and the brake caliper aligned over the rotor with proper offset. If the pads are dragging you may have pushed dirt and debris into the bores when you were pushing them back in without cleaning the exposed pistons first. The other not so good reason is you may have put in the WRONG type of brake fluid...was it DOT 4 or DOT 5 put in when you bled or changed out the brake fluid. Wrong type will swell the seals and make the pistons/seals "stick". Check your manual and the master cylinder cover label just to cross check and be sure.
     
  6. 2001FLHT

    2001FLHT Member

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    I used Dot 3 synthetic. What should I do from here ??
     
  7. 2000classic

    2000classic Active Member

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    Double check the manual on the brake fluid. My 2000 U/C takes Dot 5. I don't know about your 01.
     
  8. rancid

    rancid Active Member

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    01 will use dot 5 also, another thing dot 5 can be used in any dot 3 or 4 system it wont do any damage to the seals.
     
  9. TQuentin1

    TQuentin1 Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator

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    There are two issues to address:

    I agree with the above posts that your bike should have DOT 5 silicone brake fluid in both the front and back systems. You will need to COMPLETELY replace the DOT 3 that is in the system now. You can try pumping out ALL the current fluid and then chasing it with DOT 5 until you can tell you are NOT getting any more mixture out. But the safest approach would be to COMPLETELY disassemble the calipers and the MC and clean everything with alcohol and then DOT 5 fluid (the internals). I would suggest the latter approach.

    Second, aligning the front end is important when you are reassembling the front end. See Glider's stuff here:

    Brakes, Tires and Wheels - Harley Davidson Community

    and here:

    Front Axle Installation Tip - Harley Davidson Community


    TQ
     
  10. maine-e-axe

    maine-e-axe Junior Member

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    Don't get any of the DOT 3 on ANY painted parts, it works like paint stripper.:newsmile030: