$24 Motorcycle Update #1: No Roll Till Stop

Before I got too far working on anything I went ahead and ordered a few parts I’d need for the build. This included; a new battery, new handlebar grips, Helmet, wireless headphones (I’ll get to why later), and a new master cylinder after I realized the screws were stripped on the one it came with. 

If you are rebuilding a bike for your first time check out some of these awesome resources I found before you start your build:

  • FortNine Youtube Channel: Fortnine is a great resource on just about everything motorcycle related from our neighbors up north. The host is a little dramatic but it makes for interesting videos.
  • Motorcycle Magazine Youtube Channel: The two hosts of this channel are a hilarious duo who obviously care about motorcycles. They have a great segment called MC garage where they cover a lot of the hardware related to operating a motorcycle. Or if you just want to watch some motorcycle content they have some of the best!
  • 4into1: Working on an old bike? Haveing trouble finding parts? The guys over at 4into1 most likely have what your looking for. The best part is the parts are way cheaper than just about anywhere else!

With everything headed my way I started working on cleaning out the brakes. I started by popping the banjo bolts off of the brake calipers and tried my best to drain the rest of the brake fluid (If you don’t know what a banjo bolt is check out this article, they’re a really interesting piece of tech). Make sure you’re careful when handling brake fluid, the stuff is nasty and can ruin your hands, mine hurt for weeks later. Once I thought all the fluid was out I took the brake lines completely off, ran some brake cleaner through them till it was semi-clear, then let them soak in brake cleaner overnight. The next day I ran some more brake cleaner through the lines and then finished off by scrubbing the inside of the banjo fitting with a toothbrush to get any last gunk before setting it aside to dry. 

Next, I worked on getting the master cylinders cleaned up. The screws that hold the lid closed for the front master cylinder reservoir had been completely stripped. I tried a few methods to get the screws out but I didn’t have any luck with it. I bought this cheap master cylinder from Amazon, it worked initially but never really had any stopping power, then it completely failed just a couple days later. I replaced it with this much heavier duty one from 4into1, it worked beautifully and gave me a ton of stopping power. The best part is now I can do burnouts before I replace the old dry rotted tire!

While cleaning up the front caliper I forgot not to press the brake while I had it pulled off and pushed the pistons so far out I couldn’t get the caliper back on. luckily a friend recommended resetting the pistons with a clamp and I managed to get the brake put back on. If this happens to you just make sure to take the cover off the master cylinder so it can vent air as the fluid level rises.

Finally, I cleaned up the rear brake with the same process. Although I did have to remake a clevis pin that held the rear master cylinder to the rear brake pedal when the old one fell out on the first ride. With brakes repaired and my newfound ability to stop It’s time to get started on the engine.

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