Author Topic: Bleeding+Refilling an Empty Non-ABS Brake System w\Speed Bleeders© ( ST1100 ) *  (Read 7397 times)

Offline KoTAOW

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I just recently completed changing out the front brake lines with Spiegler© SS lines and replacing the O rings in the front calipers on my '99 ST11 standard.  This was the first time I have ever gotten into the calipers for maintenance or replaced brake lines so it was going to be new territory for me to refill and bleed an empty brake system.  I have had Speed Bleeders© installed on my bike for several years but I wasn't sure if they would be a help or a hindrance for refilling and bleeding an empty brake system.  They have always worked great for when I have replaced fluid by pushing the old fluid out of the system with new fluid but this was obviously going to be a different circumstance.  

After fitting the new Spieglers© and replacing the O rings in the calipers I began the process of bleeding the system.  When I began the bleeding process initially some fluid, maybe an amount equal to about half the capacity of the master cylinder reservoir, was pumped from the master cylinder into the system. Then nothing else would go through no matter what I tried (and I tried several different things) with the Speed Bleeders© in place. I even tried to pull the fluid through the system with a syringe and a piece of tubing. Long story short what I eventually had to do was to replace one of the Speed Bleeders© with a stock bleeder and start the process again with the stock bleeder. Once I did that the fluid started coming on through like it was supposed to. After I established a good flow of fluid through the stock bleeder I closed it and then attached the tubing to the other caliper that still had a speed bleeder installed. I cracked the Speed Bleeder© open and began depressing the brake lever and fluid started flowing right away. I eventually replaced the speed bleeder in the other caliper, bled that caliper again and then finished the entire process. The last thing I did was to crack the banjo bolt at the master cylinder to check for air in the line at that point.  I couldn't begin to tell you why the system wouldn't bleed initially with both Speed Bleeders© in place but at least I managed to get around the problem.  

Hopes this helps for anyone else, especially first timers like me, who undertake the task of having to refill and bleed an empty brake system on a non-ABS system that already has Speed Bleeders© in place and they encounter the same problem I did.

by Ken Hendrix, STOC #3371

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Bleeding brakes,  doesn't have to be hard.....



From the Speed Bleeders© web page:

Attention Honda ST1100 owners:

  On certain models Honda used a different bleeder for the front brakes and clutch.  Before you order Speed Bleeders for your motorcycle you need to look at the original bleeder screws and make note of the differences.  If your motorcycle has the Honda # 43352-MG9-006  then you need to order SB8125LL.  If your motorcycles original bleeders look like the SB8125 then you can use that part number or you can use SB8125L.  The only difference between the two part numbers is the longer nipple on the SB8125L.  Both will work fine.



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« Last Edit: December 18, 2012, 06:33:28 PM by Tom Melnik »

Offline KoTAOW

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Comment by Michael Martin:

With a large quantity of air in the system, depressing the master cylinder does not develop enough pressure to open the check valve in the Speed Bleeder ©.

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Comment by Don Grimes:

I had the same problem on my clutch once and cracked the banjo fitting on the master cylinder first and bled out the air in it, then was able to bleed out the clutch liine via the Speed Bleeder© . But it wouldn't bleed untill the Master Cly. was done first.

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Comment by WJ Bertrand:

You could probably have used the Speed Bleeders like a conventional bleeders and avoid swapping them back and forth.  Once you had enough fluid in there to generate sufficient pressure to open the check valve, you would see this right away and switch to Speed Bleeder© mode.

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Comments by John Oosterhuis:

Refilling a system after a complete teardown/piston seals R&R can be made easier by pumping in new fluid from the bottom up, like the pro shops do.  Easy to do with one of these from your local Farm and Fleet or similar:



When I replaced my brake and clutch lines with Galfer SS versions from the group buy (sorry, one of these days I'll get around to adding good descriptive captions to the album's pictures):
http://rides.webshots.com/album/563221618wHTihQ


I looked at the inside of the caliper bodies before replacing the pistons so I could figure out the best way to hold them so that the air moved up to the master cylinder instead of being trapped in a pocket above the calipers' fluid port as I fed fluid into them with the syringe.

STill ended up doing some minor bleeding the old fashioned way, but it was easy with one of those little one-handed bleed bottles with the magnet on it:


With a MityVac© for normal fluid R&R, I see no need for speed bleeders and endless lever squeezing/pedal pumping.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2012, 06:40:07 PM by Tom Melnik »