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2003 Kawasaki Vulcan Mean Streak 1500
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So i did a bunch of new owner of an older bike maintenance on my 03 Mean Streak.
I changed the coolant, that wasn't so bad.. green out, yellow in
I changed the differential fluid.. reddish black out, clear 75W90 in.. I think the reddish black color indicates that it was probably well overdue for the change.
I changed the rear brake fluid which was orange using my oil extactor and filling at the same time method and was simple.. it was interesting that there were 2 nipples.. i drain/filled using the first nipple and the did the same onto the second nipple and some black fluid came out and then clear.
I left the clutch fluid alone as i can see its super clear and the previous owner told me he changed it recently.
I then proceeded to work on the front brakes and damn, one of the master cylinder screws got stripped, it was already a little rounded so now its done. I ordered a screw extractor and will work on that tomorrow, i also bought 4 new screws from Lowes and will replace both front brake reservoir and clutch reservoir cover screws for good measure.
I changed the oil today.. what was supposed to be easy peasy turned into a big time log jam.. i removed the drain plug and drained and replaced the oil filter.. the oil was quite black...
i then removed the side screen to clean it out and it was pretty clean already but i flushed it with carb cleaner for good measure.. great! now for the who haa... omg, i went to replace that cap and for the life of me i couldn't get it to seat and tighten, it kept worming its way loose. I even tried installing without the screen and spring to make sure i could seat it and no-go.. so i cleaned the threads on the cap and inside the hole and kept at it.. i must have spent 30 minutes on it using my right hand the whole time with assistance from my left to keep it flat.. finally i switched hands and then using my left arm/hand was finally able to seat it and get it tightened..
Crazy! Makes me fret the next time.. have you guys run into the same?

Next stop.. flush/fill front brake fluid and change the front and rear brake pads that are on order
 

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2003 Kawasaki Vulcan Mean Streak 1500
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks... happy to report that the screw extractor worked to remove that stripped screw in the master cyl cover... changed out the front brake fluid and hooked up a USB line, good times :)
 

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2003 Kawasaki Vulcan Mean Streak 1500
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Today i removed the rear cam chain tensioner to see how many clicks were left. There were 2 clicks remaining and the bike has 31k on her, so it seems that i should be good for alittle while, although i have added the extension caps to my Amazon cart for a later project
 

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Wait till you remove the rear wheel for tire swaps, I spent around an hour and 3 beers wrestling with it trying to get the splines back in. The bike nearly fell off the jack a few times too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yea, thats alittle above my pay grade.. new tires ill pay a shop to mount and balance.. speaking of, my front is needing a replacement in the near future, thinking Shinko 130/70/17 although its listed as a rear?

 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Installed the can chain tensioner extensions today. Was a pretty easy job!
When I removed the tensioners the front one had 0 clicks left and the rear had 2 clicks left, glad I didn't wait on this and one less thing to worry about..
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Changed front and rear brake pads today. The rear along with the front right were a piece of cake, too easy even. Until i got to the front left and couldn't get the pistons all retracted enough to get the caliper over the disc.. i used a c-clamp, vice grips, screwdriver and down to the last piston when finally it started to fall out and some brake fluid leaked and then i guess it was the right amount of fluid loss to allow me to retract all of the pistons to where they needed to be.. i think i overfilled the master cylinder, so this was all my fault.. anyway once that was done, it was a cinch to get the new pads on and installed.. If it weren't for the fluid level issue, the whole job can be done in less than an hour, easy and inexpensive, and great stopping power now.
Glad i did it as the old pads were all getting very close to being non-existent
 

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When I removed the tensioners the front one had 0 clicks left and the rear had 2 clicks left,
Curious how you determined how many clicks they had left since they should have extended fully while they were being removed. The only way I can think of to prevent the tensioners from moving during disassembly, would be to lock the plungers in place with a longer 'Plunger Lock' bolt before removing them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
When i removed them, i took them out slowly so they didnt catch on the engine. you should be able to remove them in the same fashion without any movement occurring of the rod, or at least i don't think they moved at all
 

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When i removed them, i took them out slowly so they didnt catch on the engine. you should be able to remove them in the same fashion without any movement occurring of the rod, or at least i don't think they moved at all
They're spring loaded - that's how they work. They're going to extend fully, unless you lock them (with a bolt as I suggested - or some other way), when removed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Question for you guys.. when that piston overextended and leaked brake fluid, i was able to push it back in and re-assemble.. i then pumped the front brake a few times and it built pressure with no issue.. also a test ride proved the front brakes working with no issue..
I read online that if a piston overextends and leaks fluid, a brake bleed becomes necessary because air will get in.. Could that be possible that one of the calipers (right side) works fine and the other has no pressure yet the front brake lever has full pressure?
Should i bleed the front brake?
Also.. i jacked the front wheel up and noticed it takes force to move the front wheel.. could this be a caliper sticking or is it just normal with new pads as they need to bed in?

Thanks
 
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