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  • Brakes squeaking

    Hi all,

    Been taking my resuscitated XS out on the town, and all of a sudden my front brakes are squealing pretty loudly when braking. I've poked around for how to resolve - going to try the hard braking thing, but I'm slightly worried that it came up only after riding for a few days. Pads are old but plenty of life left in them, based on width. Brakes are newly rebuilt with build kits, and worked fine and quiet for maybe 40 miles or so before this.

    Most of the posts I've read were new pads, or were at least an existing issue already. Any guesses as to what would cause this, all of a sudden? Want to make sure I'm not screwing something up and/or doing something that'll lead to even more problems.

  • #2
    Eab, If just noise then this can be commonly eliminated with a small amount of lube between the caliper contact points and pad backing plates. Any auto parts store will have high temp ceramic brake grease for this purpose such as:

    https://www.permatex.com/products/lu.../?locale=en_us

    ---Bax
    80 SG

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    • #3
      Some XS models had shims between the caliper pistons and the pads to mitigate brake squeal. You might have put them back in differently when you rebuilt the calipers....or deleted them purposefully.

      Another cause is sintered pads- they are notorious for squealing. However, it doesn't sound like you changed the pads.

      -Mike
      _________
      '79 XS1100SF 20k miles
      '80 XS1100SG 42k miles
      '81 XS1100H Venturer 35k miles
      '79 XS750SF 15k miles
      '84 Honda V65 Magna ? miles
      '85 Honda V65 Magna ~7k miles
      '84 Honda V65 Magna 48k miles (parts bike)
      '86 Yamaha VMAX 7k miles

      Previous: '68 Motoguzzi 600cc + '79 XS750SF 22k miles

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      • #4
        You say the pads are old. Are you sure they aren’t contaminated? If they ever had oil on them, they’re trash.
        Marty (in Mississippi)
        XS1100SG
        XS650SK

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        • #5
          Did you center the rotors on the front? I would take each caliper back off and check your work. Long shot but have you picked up a small stone in between the pad and rotor?
          2 - 80 LGs bought one new
          81 LH
          02 FXSTB Nighttrain
          Jim

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          • #6
            I put some brake grease between the pads and the piston and it seems to have done the trick. It still squeals a little but much less, and less so as I ride. Going to see how time treats it, might need to do a little more slathering.

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            • #7
              Hi Eab, Glad to hear it was an improvement. JC, did you do the just the piston side or both sides of each caliper?

              Bax
              80 SG

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              • #8
                Originally posted by cajun31 View Post
                Did you center the rotors on the front? I would take each caliper back off and check your work. Long shot but have you picked up a small stone in between the pad and rotor?
                Not needed to be done on the Standards.
                81H Venturer1100 "The Bentley" (on steroids) 97 Yamaha YZ250(age reducer) 92 Honda ST1100 "Twisty"(touring rocket) Age is relative to the number of seconds counted 'airing' out an 85ft. table-top.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Eab View Post
                  I put some brake grease between the pads and the piston and it seems to have done the trick. It still squeals a little but much less, and less so as I ride. Going to see how time treats it, might need to do a little more slathering.
                  Eab, actually clean off any remaining brake grease and put a thin smear of anti-sieze on those locations and problem solved.
                  81H Venturer1100 "The Bentley" (on steroids) 97 Yamaha YZ250(age reducer) 92 Honda ST1100 "Twisty"(touring rocket) Age is relative to the number of seconds counted 'airing' out an 85ft. table-top.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Bax View Post
                    Hi Eab, Glad to hear it was an improvement. JC, did you do the just the piston side or both sides of each caliper?

                    Bax
                    Only the piston side... should I do the other as well? Hadn't thought to - frankly greasing anything at all down there seemed counterintuitive initially!

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                    • #11
                      Hi Eab, yeah on the back side contact points of the other side as well. Would expect any squeal be gone after that.
                      80 SG

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                      • #12
                        My bike has very squeaky front brakes unless I am braking hard. I will have to do the brake grease thing...
                        Skids (Sid Hansen)

                        Down to one 1978 E. Stock air box with K&N filter, 81H pipes and carbs, 8500 feet elevation.
                        03 Honda ST1300 ABS

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