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caperwing

95 polaris xplorer 400 2 stroke rear brakes

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The rear brakes on this are hydraulic and manual. The hydraulic part is all messed up so I disconnected it all and want to go just manual on the rear. I got it all put back together but doesn't seem to work to well, like not enough pressure. The manual says I should mark the casing before taking it apart which I didn't read until to late. Any ideas? I put new brake pads on.

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Hey @caperwing

Can you explain that a little better ? 

Are we taking about the fluid in the system and hydraulic ? 

What did you do and how did you do it exactly?

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The rear brake and front brake are hydraulic and work together from the the handlebar master cylinder. The rear brake also has a foot pedal that works the brake manually. I blocked the hydraulic line going to the rear and was just going to use it manually. It will stop the wheel when on jack stands but doesn't when on the road.

 The front brakes work fine like this but I also want the back one to work.

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So your trying to get the rear hydraulic brakes working again ?

Ive never seen the front and rear working together on one handle.  Are you sure about that set up ? 

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Yes I am positive..The handlebar lever controls both the two front disk brakes and the rear disk brake....There is also a foot lever that controls only the rear brake manually. I blocked the brake line going to the rear which would leave it  manual only..It works from foot pedal to lever on the rear caliper which turns and manually squeeze's the rear brake pads........................ It is a good system when working but my rear caliper was so messed up that I wanted to try this..........................The brake pads were worn so bad that it was the worst I've ever seen in 50 years................That being said would it be possible that the brake rotor would be so worn down that the caliper can't squeeze enough?

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Wow ok I will take your word for it.

So if any set of caliper brakes wear down to a point that the brake material is gone from the pad then it’s metal on metal. Always a bad thing. 

This is a easy sign to spot because the damage to the rotor (disk) is very noticeable. It will have groves in it due to the rivers that hold the brake pad material to the steel portion of the pad, so if that rotor is wavy and has ruts in it then yes it’s possible. My guess is it would be about a quarter of an inch thick if it were good (Rotor). 

Did you put new pads on ? 

 

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Yes I put new pads on and if I have it on jack stands they will stop the wheel but not if the bike is moving....The old pads were worn way past the rivets almost to what is left is paper thin and I can bend easily with my fingers. The rotors/disks are only about 1/8 thick and I wonder if that would cause the pads to not squeeze it enough....So you think the rotors should be about 1/4 thick , if so then that could be the problem. But then again the new pads should make up the difference...don't know.

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I would agree but I don’t understand the system. It could be a matter of adjustment. I really have never heard of a rear brake system that is mechanical and also hydraulic? 

Can you post a few pics of the rear caliper, the handlebars and what you did to block it off ? I’m kinda curious.  

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Sorry can't post pics, not that saavy, but basically it's a block with four holes that have hydraulic lines coming out of it. One line to the handle/reservoir, one line to each front caliper, and one line to the rear caliper. ...I took the line to the rear out and I made a plug to go into the block....That left me with the front brakes working and now the back one should work manually but with new pads it doesn't seem to squeeze the rotor hard enough...  I only use this bike around my property and don't want to put any money into it.  I'm leaning towards the rotor is worn down to much so I'll try to find one.

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I’m going to guess that it’s not properly bled out.   Whenever you do work or open up the fluid lines on a brake system it has to be bled.  So if there is a hose from the rear caliper to the brake pedal then you should be able to bleed the brakes pending there is a bleed out nipple on the caliper.  So is that bleeder on the caliper ? If so you can bleed it and prob solve your problem.   

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The rear brake caliper no longer has a line running to it. I took it all out it has a mechanical lever that pushes the caliper out to engage the pads to the rotor... I guess if you never heard of or saw one then it would be hard to understand how it works.

 I did bleed the remaining lines and have lots of brakes on the front....The rear caliper was hydraulic or mechanical and I removed the hydraulic lines and now should work as mechanical..Hard to explain. Without the hydraulic, when I push down on the pedal it pushes on the caliper which closes the pads that grab the rotor.

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I can understand it just fine I’ve seen a few different set ups before I’m just wondering which set up it is.  Wether it be a cable actuator like you would find on a Yamaha blaster or a mechanical rod that draws the caliper in. It is hard to vision without pics I guess. 

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You got it right, not a cable..it's a rod that pushes on a rampes part that pushes the caliper in.

The good news is that I picked up a used rotor and it all works..ya hoo . I have been doing these repairs for a long time and have never seen a rotor worn down so bad... I am going to get somebody to get me some pics of it and write a short how to..Good way to get brakes if you break a hydraulic line out on the trail..well at least with this machine..or if you plug one line you can still have brakes.

Thank you

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Ok so it was the rotor after all. Great news. 

Definitely post some pics and let others know please how you managed this problem.  Including how you isolated the rear brake from the front.   I’m not a fan of having both (front/rear) operate the same time. 

Ride safe!

 

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