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    Sticky front brake

    I just bought a 1988 Hawk with only 4000 miles on it. The bike hasn't been ridden much lately. The front wheel turns freely and the brakes aren't stuck, but when I pull on the brake lever the brakes seem to be all or nothing. As soon as you pull on the lever the brakes are on full, with no progressive pull.
    Any ideas where to start?
    Thanks for any help you can give me.
    88 Honda Hawk
    2008 FJR1300

    #2
    Start by changing the brake fluid. What is the condition of the brakes that you can see? Any rust there? It could be that you need to rebuild the brake caliper- replacing the seals etc. Refer to this:
    http://hawkworks.net/hawkfiche/front_brake_caliper.html

    I have not had this problem, but I wonder if a brake cleaner might help?
    '88 Hawk GT
    '89 Harley FXSTC
    2008 Yamaha V-Star 1300 tourer

    http://www.hawkgtforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=948

    "...my performance ain't perfect, but its loud, and its fast..." -Widespread Panic

    Comment


      #3
      One other question- does the bike have a steel braided brake line? If so it could be that.
      '88 Hawk GT
      '89 Harley FXSTC
      2008 Yamaha V-Star 1300 tourer

      http://www.hawkgtforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=948

      "...my performance ain't perfect, but its loud, and its fast..." -Widespread Panic

      Comment


        #4
        are they really all-or-nothing or is it that there is very little play before you hit "full on"? i.e. does it engage with little-to-no lever movement or does it wait until the lever is 2/3 pulled then all of a sudden engage (the latter would be a problem)
        ...

        Comment


          #5
          Originally Posted by scott
          are they really all-or-nothing or is it that there is very little play before you hit "full on"? i.e. does it engage with little-to-no lever movement or does it wait until the lever is 2/3 pulled then all of a sudden engage (the latter would be a problem)
          They engage with little or no lever movement.

          Thanks
          88 Honda Hawk
          2008 FJR1300

          Comment


            #6
            I don't know, but can you really test brakes by just spinning the wheel and pulling the lever...I mean it seems to me that it would take hardly ANY friction to stop a hand turned wheel, and what may seem instant full on the stand turning the wheel by hand, may be not that much when the full force of the bike/rider moving down the street and you pull the lever...Just a thought, anyone agree/disagree?
            Damn right it's a Hawk GT

            Comment


              #7
              Sorry I wasn't clearer in my description. The brakes grab on the road, not just with a hand freewheel. I mentioned the hand spin as I thought that at least indicated the brakes weren't already dragging, prior to pulling the lever.
              I appreciate the feedback and help
              88 Honda Hawk
              2008 FJR1300

              Comment


                #8
                Originally Posted by sfd620
                Originally Posted by scott
                are they really all-or-nothing or is it that there is very little play before you hit "full on"? i.e. does it engage with little-to-no lever movement or does it wait until the lever is 2/3 pulled then all of a sudden engage (the latter would be a problem)
                They engage with little or no lever movement.

                Thanks
                given that the wheel spins freely (no real drag) it sounds like the prior owner had OCD about brake bleeding. i wouldn't be at all surprised to find a stainless line up front. as far as the way they grab... it doesn't sound like there's anything wrong with them. some of us actually go out of our way to get our brakes like that (i'd be in that camp, both on my race and streetbikes.).
                ...not sure what you can do to add spongy-ness.
                ...

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