Anyone perform a brake-flush on an ABS model? - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 01:20 PM Thread Starter
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Anyone perform a brake-flush on an ABS model?

All,

My 2012 Voyager will be the third ABS-equipped bike I've owned. An earlier model BMW used a servo motor as part of the system and required a fairly complicated brake flush procedure. My second BMW's ABS was a straight forward technique, using a suction pump or the simpler method of using the brake lever and opening and closing the bleed valve.

Has anyone performed this on the the K-ACT system and if you have, does it require any special equipment that would keep me from doing this in my own garage with simple hand tools?

I know what you're gonna say... "buy a service manual."

I just got the bike and I'm still in the process of finding the best price on an electronic version of the 2012 manual.

Your experiences with this procedure are greatly appreciated.

Last edited by Romans5.8; 08-22-2012 at 05:08 PM.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 02:57 PM
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I did a brake-flush on mine about two months ago. I used the old-fashioned method of pumping the reservoir and bleeding it through a clear plastic tube through the bleeder valve. Being that the ABS models have more fluid is the reason I used a full can of DOT 4. It's no big deal, just flush it through.
But your bike is new, why are you consern about that now?


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2009 Vulcan Voyager ABS/ my "Blue Goose"
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Last edited by MN-Rider; 08-22-2012 at 03:08 PM.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 04:57 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davidsheek View Post
I did a brake-flush on mine about two months ago. I used the old-fashioned method of pumping the reservoir and bleeding it through a clear plastic tube through the bleeder valve. Being that the ABS models have more fluid is the reason I used a full can of DOT 4. It's no big deal, just flush it through.
But your bike is new, why are you consern about that now?
I had to order my Voyager and the dealer tells me it's been sitting in a crate for a year. Also, the dealer admittedly has avoided selling ABS bikes because they "don't sell" so their techs don't have much experience with ABS systems.

I do all the maintenance myself and I'm just planning ahead, so thank you for your post.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 05:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nerdybiker View Post
All,

My 2012 Voyager will be the third ABS-equipped bike I've owned. An earlier model BMW used a servo motor as part of the system and required a fairly complicated brake flush procedure. My second BMW's ABS was a straight forward technique, using a suction pump or the simpler method of using the brake lever and opening and closing the bleed valve.

Has anyone performed this on the the K-ACT system and if you have, does it require any special equipment that would keep me from doing this in my own garage with simple hand tools?

I know what you're gonna say... "buy a service manual."

I just got the bike and I'm still in the process of finding the best price on an electronic version of the 2012 manual.

Your experiences with this procedure are greatly appreciated.
The only place you can get a legal service manual is Kawasaki.com. They aren't too terribly expensive though, and are a great asset.

"8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."

Romans 5:8 (NIV)

2014 Kawasaki Vulcan 1700 Vaquero ABS SE
iPod Connector Kit, Kuryakyn Highway Pegs, Mustang Touring Seat, Marvella's Hitch, Kuryakyn Trailer Wiring Kit, Haul-Master Tag-a-Long Cargo Trailer

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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 05:13 PM
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If there's no symptoms of air in the brake lines I sure wouldn't do that until after a year or two of ridding. But hey, to each his own right?
I sent you a PM.

Looks like I'm outvoted lol What do I know after 62 years.


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2009 Vulcan Voyager ABS/ my "Blue Goose"
BIG 3 = PCV w/ Ign/Cobra Slip-ons/Thunder Air Kit
Kuryakyn "Longhorn Offset Highway Pegs"
Air Hawk2 seat cusion/Remote Control for house
National Cycle Fender Tips//Utopia Back Rest
Gorilla Alarm/Strebel Air Horn/14 in. Dark Shield
Kaw Rear Speakers/Galfer Break Pads
Garmin GPS, RAM mounted on break reservoir
Chrome Mug Holder/Extra Chrome/Wrapped Pipes
Flags and Mounts from "Rumbling Pride"
Dunlop SP5000 Car Tire /AMSOIL & Filter

Last edited by davidsheek; 08-22-2012 at 07:01 PM.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 05:17 PM
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In our experience with ABS equipped skoots the fluching and bleeding is the same as non-ABS skoots. We ALWAYS flush out the hydraulics at the 600 mile service check, the factory fluid is already well on it's way down the tube, and we always see either air or dark fluid.

Flush and bleed the hydraulics as soon as one can, it's a simple job yet will make an improvement in the operation and the lifespan of the components..

RACNRAY

"TRUE HAPPINESS IS IN THE HEART,NOT IN THE OUTSIDE FIXES!!"
WITH OVER 42 YEARS AS A MOTORCYCLE TECHNICIAN/HI-PO SHOP OWNER I AM A PURVEYOR OF FACT NOT FICTION!
"WE LIVE OUR LIVES IN CHAINS NEVER KNOWING WE HAD THE KEY"
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 05:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davidsheek View Post
If there's no symptoms of air in the brake lines I sure wouldn't do that until after a year or two of ridding. But hey, to each his own right?
I sent you a PM.
Brake fluid absorbs moisture from the air. RACNRAY and others have reported some nasty fluid right out of the crate. My wifes Honda Shadow is a leftover 2011 model, had 0 miles on it, but had a yellow tinge to the fluid in the master cylinder. Bled the brakes once I got it home and it was black and nasty at the bottom. The dealer had it sitting for a year, chances are they had it outside many a time on display, might have gotten rained on, who knows. The fluid breaks down over time, even if the bike isn't ridden.

FWIW, I do mine annually, bi-annually on the cars. Both vehicles have nasty looking fluid come out each time. Brake fluid is one of those often missed maintenance items. When I did mine on my bike, which is an '06 bought in '11 (did it when I bought it), the braking performance changed dramatically. But, failing to change the fluid won't cause your brakes to just stop working after a year or two, which is probably why most people don't do it. Get some miles and some years on it though, and it's time for a caliper rebuild or other nastiness. I'd rather just bleed the darn things!

"8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."

Romans 5:8 (NIV)

2014 Kawasaki Vulcan 1700 Vaquero ABS SE
iPod Connector Kit, Kuryakyn Highway Pegs, Mustang Touring Seat, Marvella's Hitch, Kuryakyn Trailer Wiring Kit, Haul-Master Tag-a-Long Cargo Trailer

2011 Honda Shadow Aero 750 (Wife's)

Memphis shades quick-release windshield, OEM Solo Seat, Mustang Fender Bib, Chrome Solo Luggage Rack

Past: 2006 Vulcan 900 Classic LT
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 05:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Romans5.8 View Post
Brake fluid absorbs moisture from the air. RACNRAY and others have reported some nasty fluid right out of the crate. My wifes Honda Shadow is a leftover 2011 model, had 0 miles on it, but had a yellow tinge to the fluid in the master cylinder. Bled the brakes once I got it home and it was black and nasty at the bottom. The dealer had it sitting for a year, chances are they had it outside many a time on display, might have gotten rained on, who knows. The fluid breaks down over time, even if the bike isn't ridden.

FWIW, I do mine annually, bi-annually on the cars. Both vehicles have nasty looking fluid come out each time. Brake fluid is one of those often missed maintenance items. When I did mine on my bike, which is an '06 bought in '11 (did it when I bought it), the braking performance changed dramatically. But, failing to change the fluid won't cause your brakes to just stop working after a year or two, which is probably why most people don't do it. Get some miles and some years on it though, and it's time for a caliper rebuild or other nastiness. I'd rather just bleed the darn things!
YEP...WHAT HE SAID!!

RACNRAY

"TRUE HAPPINESS IS IN THE HEART,NOT IN THE OUTSIDE FIXES!!"
WITH OVER 42 YEARS AS A MOTORCYCLE TECHNICIAN/HI-PO SHOP OWNER I AM A PURVEYOR OF FACT NOT FICTION!
"WE LIVE OUR LIVES IN CHAINS NEVER KNOWING WE HAD THE KEY"
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-23-2012, 07:24 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Romans5.8 View Post
Brake fluid absorbs moisture from the air. RACNRAY and others have reported some nasty fluid right out of the crate. My wifes Honda Shadow is a leftover 2011 model, had 0 miles on it, but had a yellow tinge to the fluid in the master cylinder. Bled the brakes once I got it home and it was black and nasty at the bottom. The dealer had it sitting for a year, chances are they had it outside many a time on display, might have gotten rained on, who knows. The fluid breaks down over time, even if the bike isn't ridden.

FWIW, I do mine annually, bi-annually on the cars. Both vehicles have nasty looking fluid come out each time. Brake fluid is one of those often missed maintenance items. When I did mine on my bike, which is an '06 bought in '11 (did it when I bought it), the braking performance changed dramatically. But, failing to change the fluid won't cause your brakes to just stop working after a year or two, which is probably why most people don't do it. Get some miles and some years on it though, and it's time for a caliper rebuild or other nastiness. I'd rather just bleed the darn things!
Thanks, RacnRay...

You're a true professional!!
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 01-19-2015, 11:35 AM
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Need to revive this Brake bleed/flush thread for ABS Vulcans..

It is my understanding that under 13 MPH the linked brakes are turned off by computer. So, when flushing the brakes in garage, does the rear brake pedal only flush the rear? Then will the front brake lever flush both front calipers? Or just one? And if just one how would you flush the other?

Craig
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