Author Topic: Proposal for a new and improved way of de linking the rear to front brake link  (Read 2449 times)

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Offline Illo

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Hello everybody.  My name is Fred Alberni and I go by the name Illo here in the forums.  I am a few months away from 70 years old and I am retired with a background mechanical engineering, large industrial transmissions.  I am by no means an expert in hydraulics.  But I have a reasonable understanding it.  I bought my 2012 C14 about three weeks ago but haven't taken delivery of it due to the cold weather in the area, SW Ontario, Canada.  I knew before hand about the issue the 2010 to 2014 models with linked brake systems have.  I was hoping to either learn to live with it, or find out if there is mod that can be done.  I've been reading in the forums about the issue until I came across this solution offered by Mr. Randy N on May 7, 2013.  Here's the link to that discussion:

http://forum.cog-online.org/concours-14-zg1400-general-chat-and-tech/linked-brakes-fixed/

Although Randy's solution fixes the problem for a lot of people, some people, such as myself, would like to have the benefit of ABS on the rear brakes, as well as the front front brakes, without the intrusion of the rear brake on the front.

I've shown Randy's modification on a schematic as shown below:

Schematic of Randy N's mod


The solution I am about to describe would do the following:

- Maintain front ABS
- Maintain rear ABS
- Front brake lever would actuate rear brake as usual
- Rear brake pedal WOULD NOT actuate front brake
- Front and rear brakes can be applied simultaneously without the front of the bike diving

To the best of my knowledge this solution has not been discussed before.  Or at least I haven't come across it as I've been searching for a solution.  If you've seen it mentioned by others before, please do not hesitate to correct me. I would appreciate it.  I wouldn't want to make a false claim and take credit for something that has been done before.

Here's a schematic of my proposed system:



In my proposed system the rear brake lines are left entirely alone.  The hose going from the ABS pump to the front right calipers is plugged as shown at point "E".  The extension of that hose going to the right calipers is disconnected at the entry to the right right calipers at point "F".  The section of the hose from point "E" to point "F" is open at both ends and is left unused.

The reason for plugging the hose leading to the front calipers is described on the following Kawasaki publication.  The effects of the rear braking action is transmitted to the front right calipers only. 

Kawasaki Publication


The hose from front Master Cylinder to ABS pump is left alone.   The left calipers are not affected by K-ACT system but still controlled by ABS from the action of the front brake lever.   So we will feed the front left calipers with the normal hose all the way to the point of entry to the front left calipers.  From here we get our ideas from the 2008 ABS model of C14.  In that model only one line goes from the ABS pump to the front brake.  In that model the line feeds into the front right calipers.  At the entrance to the right caliper another hose picks it up and takes it to the front left calipers.  In our case we are plugging one of the two hoses going to the front calipers and using only one of them, the one going to the left.  So, we use the same hose from the 2008 model.  However, this hose instead of taking the fluid from right to left, it is taking it from left to right.  Please note one the hose seals and the longer bold should be ordered from the 208 model as well. 

Here's the schematic of the 2008 model.  The hose we have to borrow from that model is highlighted in green borders.  The 2008 ABS front brake hose to be used in our mod is circled by the green line.  Please note the blue arrows that  point to the two hose ends that are stacked together on the right side 2008 model.  In our mod the two hose ends are stacked on the left side instead.




This mod is primarily intended for K-ACT models prior to the 2015 model. From 2015 to the current 2019 model the effects of K-ACT are reduced.  However, if somebody doesn't want the rear pedal action to affect the front, then there's no reason why this mod cannot be used.

Regarding all the sensors, as far as I can tell all the four sensors mentioned in the Kawasaki write up are housed in the ABS pump housing.  I don not see any pressure sensors listed on any of the parts drawings.  so the four sensors must be housed in the ABS pump housing.  I think all the sensors would function and make normal readings.

With all that being said, I intend to ride the bike for a while before making any changes.  I would like to experience for myself how the linked system works and how it feels.  A lot of people are happy with it.  It seems like those are mostly the people who have given up using the rear brake.  That may not be acceptable to some people. 

The diagrams I used here are from the exploded views of the parts listed on at list a couple of sites.  You can look up the drawings with parts list for you model from the following link:

https://www.bikebandit.com/2012-kawasaki-concours-14-abs-zg1400ccf-parts/s/m154209


« Last Edit: March 16, 2019, 09:57:07 pm by Illo »
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Offline Steve in Sunny Fla

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Re: A new and improved way of de linking the rear to front brake link
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2019, 09:05:36 pm »
OK time to go from theory to reality. Please post up when you have done the mod and hopefully it's a success. A lot of folks would be happy to make this change, but we need to know it actually works first.  :beerchug:  And thanks for looking to improve the c-14 ;) Steve
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Offline Zarticus

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Re: A new and improved way of de linking the rear to front brake link
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2019, 09:13:52 pm »
I've got 3 other bike that do not have linked brakes so that is what I was used too. I have NO Issues with the linked brakes on my 2012 connie & after 52,000 miles still have no Issues & barley notice it. I think you should try riding the bike before trying to eliminate a problem that you do not yet know if you have a problem with. You might be like me & many others & not find the linked brakes to be a concern.  :beerchug: 
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both responders comments are pretty mild,

I can only repeat the important parts, and give you a cautionary note;
and, with all respect to the time you spent, running thru this; I will be as polite and gentle in my response to the post, as it is something that concerns; so please, understand why I am commentating as I am.

First off;
Change the actual title of this thread, to "Fred Alberni's new and improved way of de linking the rear to front brake link"

take full responsibility, for what ever MAY occur... and still tell in print, some manner of "WARNINGS"...

I realize you are attempting to inform, but you are basing a lot (well, everything really) on "hoping" it functions.

Until you own, and do the suggestions you made here, and put MANY miles on them, testing them in a manner equal to or higher in viability, than Kawasaki did before designing, testing, and installing this "critical system", please do not suggest that anyone "do this"... whatsoever...
you place yourself into a "liability" class of extraordinary risk... and you place the danger of personal harm, or even death, upon someone that "follow this" without 'Extensive knowledge" on the "complete package"...

There is "more" to this "system" than the simple "plumbing", much has to do with the on board diagnostics, speed sensing controls, and associated computer profiles, to insure "safety"...  then, consider what also may transpire with "error codes" as a result...(and there Will be error codes, I can pretty much guarantee that part).

all I can say, is anyone that "intentionally sets out to defeat" a "system" that functions exactly like it was designed, based on their "lack of happiness level" with it's function; really should NOT buy this bike model. And further, before "modifying it", should sell it because of the "issues" in "their mind", regarding the supposed "shortcomings".

Above all, be safe. Don't test your "mods" on a public road, or anywhere that risks someone other's lives, other than your own.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2019, 09:56:30 pm by MAN OF BLUES »

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Offline Illo

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Thanks for the suggestions.  I made a few additions to make it clear this system is a proposal and not tested. 
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Offline sparkydany

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i've owned a couple of bikes with linked brakes and my concours 2014 has by far the worse linked brakes system ...  i've learnt to live it it. This bike has so much to offer that the link brakes system so called '' issue'' becomes a very secondary thing.
Very good comments were made above: before going too deep in modifying the system, give it a try and you'll see for yourself.. we all have a different opinion on that subject. if not happy with it, trade the bike.  ;)

Offline Gsled

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 I believe several people on the other forum have done this exact method of delinking the brakes. They report abs still works with without the rear brake affecting the front.
 I too really dislike the rear linked to the front. There are occasions when I would like to trail the rear  into mid turn. The linking makes this very problematic at best. I admit I have assembled all the parts to do this without having done the conversion yet, having decided to ride some more to adapt my technique to the bike. It is possible to ride around the affects of linking.  The thing that I do like about the brakes is when you need them in an emergency the linked system really sheds speed. The drawback of riding around the system is uneven front brake wear as you seldom use both front calipers when braking

Offline Illo

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Hi Gsled.  Thanks for letting me know they may have tried a similar method in the other forum.  I have visited that forum yet.  However, I would doubt it very much if it's the exact same exact system.  By this method the same hose feeds into both front calipers with the same pressure.  Only the front brake lever would activate the front brake and it would be equal on both sides.
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Offline Illo

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Just in case somebody wants to try and do this mod, it would cost $97.87 plus the cost of a bleed plug that I don't know how much it would cost.  Probably less than $5.  There are only four parts that you need to buy from the list below.  Plus again the plug that Randy N mentioned in his post.  The total The parts list and prices are from the following supplier:

https://www.cheapcycleparts.com/oemparts/a/kaw/500b5864f8700223e4796ba2/brake-piping

Here's the detailed parts list:




The bleed plug that is needed is described in Randy N's post with picture, shown at the first post on the following link.  I do wish however that he goes back to his supplier, Galfer, and get a part number with a detailed description of the part with Manufacturer's name.  Thanks Randy, if you see this.

http://forum.cog-online.org/concours-14-zg1400-general-chat-and-tech/linked-brakes-fixed/
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Offline Illo

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Okay, I went to the other forum and saw that Randy N had used this concept as early as 2013.  He used a "Tee" to branch to the two front calipers, instead of the cross over hose from left to right.  It seems like after answering a few questions he disappeared from the forum.  Another gentleman from Australia picked up the subject again in 2016 and he did the way I suggested here,  Apparently he's very happy with how brakes work.  The only problem is that apparently Kawasaki doesn't make the cross over hose any more.
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Offline Freddy

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 ;D  Tho Kaw doesn't have the ZG1400 crossover hose any longer they have stock of the ZX14 ABS crossover hose which is identical and fits perfectly, tho it has a different p/number  43095-0611   :beerchug:


http://www.kawasakionlineparts.com.au/partFinder/fiche/kawasaki/2012/zx1400-ninja-zx-14r-abs/brake-piping#ficheZone
« Last Edit: March 17, 2019, 10:51:32 am by Freddy »
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Offline NJ_Jim

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Put a couple thousand miles under your belt before you do anything.  I read all the reviews I could on this bike before I bought it last November.  Every reviewer criticized the linked brakes; to be honest, that got me concerned.

And then I bought the bike.  Ridden 1400 miles this winter. 

I found the linked brakes an easy transition. 

Ride safe.
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Offline Illo

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Yes NJ_Jim, I will definitely ride the bike for at least half the riding season here and then make a decision.  I am one of those people who uses the rear brake very lightly quite often in the middle of the curves to "tighten the linens", as some people call it.  Touching the rear brake helps to lean more without any additional effort by me and get me through the curve.  I will still try to see how it feels doing that with the stock linked set up.

I am so happy to see Freddy on this forum.  I didn't know he was posting here too.  Thanks Freddy for the alternate hose part number.  I have a questions for you.  If you were to do it over again, would you still opt to go with the cross over hose that goes over the fender, or do you think the idea of using the internal "Tee" and using an addition hose to go to the right side might have been better cosmetically, because it wouldn't be visible and wouldn't require drilling a hole in the fender?  Thanks.

----------------------------------------
Edited:

I gave my question some thought.  The way you're doing it doesn't require to do anything internally to the bike.  No lifting the tank, etc.  You just simply disconnect the hose at the right front calipers and plug it.  Then you remove the hose end from the calipers on the left side and insert the cross over hose, part number 43095-0611.  You would use a longer bolt here.  Then you come back to the right side and connect the cross over hose on the right.  You're done.  If you don't like, then you can go back in a few minutes.  Am I right, or do you need to do anything internally to the hoses at all?

So, Freddy, here another question that just poped into my head.  The cross over hose goes up over the fender and comes down on the other side and forms somewhat of an inverse "U".  That would be a big air trap.  How do you take the air out of that line???????

« Last Edit: March 17, 2019, 04:09:23 pm by Illo »
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Offline luv2fly

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I am with Zarticus.  My skills as a rider know my limits and I try not t get too close to that line too often.  The linked system is a non issue to me.  IMHO, until my name is Rossi or Marquez, I will never be able to extract that level of performance from any of my bikes.

Interesting concept and I enjoy watching other experiment like this, but I'd never do it.
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Offline Bud

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Yes NJ_Jim, I will definitely ride the bike for at least half the riding season here and then make a decision.  I am one of those people who uses the rear brake very lightly quite often in the middle of the curves to "tighten the linens", as some people call it.  Touching the rear brake helps to lean more without any additional effort by me and get me through the curve.  I will still try to see how it feels doing that with the stock linked set up.

I am so happy to see Freddy on this forum.  I didn't know he was posting here too.  Thanks Freddy for the alternate hose part number.  I have a questions for you.  If you were to do it over again, would you still opt to go with the cross over hose that goes over the fender, or do you think the idea of using the internal "Tee" and using an addition hose to go to the right side might have been better cosmetically, because it wouldn't be visible and wouldn't require drilling a hole in the fender?  Thanks.

----------------------------------------
Edited:

I gave my question some thought.  The way you're doing it doesn't require to do anything internally to the bike.  No lifting the tank, etc.  You just simply disconnect the hose at the right front calipers and plug it.  Then you remove the hose end from the calipers on the left side and insert the cross over hose, part number 43095-0611.  You would use a longer bolt here.  Then you come back to the right side and connect the cross over hose on the right.  You're done.  If you don't like, then you can go back in a few minutes.  Am I right, or do you need to do anything internally to the hoses at all?

So, Freddy, here another question that just poped into my head.  The cross over hose goes up over the fender and comes down on the other side and forms somewhat of an inverse "U".  That would be a big air trap.  How do you take the air out of that line???????

If you're referring to trail braking, have you looked at this thread and watched the video? 
http://forum.cog-online.org/motorcycle-safety/trail-braking-video/
« Last Edit: March 17, 2019, 09:25:56 pm by Bud »
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Okay, I went to the other forum and saw that Randy N had used this concept as early as 2013.  He used a "Tee" to branch to the two front calipers, instead of the cross over hose from left to right.  It seems like after answering a few questions he disappeared from the forum.  Another gentleman from Australia picked up the subject again in 2016 and he did the way I suggested here,  Apparently he's very happy with how brakes work.  The only problem is that apparently Kawasaki doesn't make the cross over hose any more.


;D  Tho Kaw doesn't have the ZG1400 crossover hose any longer they have stock of the ZX14 ABS crossover hose which is identical and fits perfectly, tho it has a different p/number  43095-0611   :beerchug:


http://www.kawasakionlineparts.com.au/partFinder/fiche/kawasaki/2012/zx1400-ninja-zx-14r-abs/brake-piping#ficheZone




 :??: :??: :??:
I don't think the comment "Kaw doesn't sell/stock the OEM crossover for the '08-'09 ZG1400" is correct.... that would be ridiculous for them not to have it, as it's a required normal service item...
I have an '08... so I keep track of parts I may need...
after checking I find it erroneous that it isn't available, just checked... it IS available.
(I could not find a notification on any part site I use, stating "unavailable", or "part superseded by XXXXX-xxxx")
Even your link to the "cheap cycle parts" site, adds it to the cart when picked....
 :-X ::)


43095-0223   HOSE-BRAKE,FR
$76.85  from Ron Ayers...

Assemblies where 43095-0223 is used
2007 Z1000 (ZR1000B7F) - Front Master Cylinder
2008 CONCOURS 14 ABS (ZG1400A8F) - Brake Piping
2008 Z1000 (ZR1000B8F) - Front Master Cylinder
2009 CONCOURS 14 ABS (ZG1400A9F) - Brake Piping

as for the ZX1400 crossover,
Assemblies where 43095-0611 is used
2013 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400FDF) - Brake Piping
2013 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400FDFA) - Brake Piping
2014 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400FEFA) - Brake Piping
2015 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400FFFA) - Brake Piping
2015 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400FFFB) - Brake Piping
2016 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400HGF) - Brake Piping
2017 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400HHF) - Brake Piping
« Last Edit: March 17, 2019, 07:23:23 pm by MAN OF BLUES »

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....
So, Freddy, here another question that just poped into my head.  The cross over hose goes up over the fender and comes down on the other side and forms somewhat of an inverse "U".  That would be a big air trap.  How do you take the air out of that line???????

It's the standard line on '08-'09 bikes..., you bleed the furthest point (left caliper) first... pushing the air to and out of it.... then bleed the right one...
Or, with the left caliper disconnected from the mounts, and a wood block in place between the pads, and the caliper raised higher than the right side caliper mounted on the bike, pick which you want to bleed first... and do them both... bubbles rise...hydraulic pressure pushes them...to the bleeder.
With regard to all the other "re-plumbing" in the diagrams, this would be the least troublesome area to bleed... :rotflmao: :rotflmao: :rotflmao:
« Last Edit: March 17, 2019, 07:33:01 pm by MAN OF BLUES »

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Offline Illo

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I don't think the comment "Kaw doesn't sell/stock the OEM crossover for the '08-'09 ZG1400" is correct.... that would be ridiculous for them not to have it, as it's a required normal service item...
I have an '08... so I keep track of parts I may need...
after checking I find it erroneous that it isn't available, just checked... it IS available.
(I could not find a notification on any part site I use, stating "unavailable", or "part superseded by XXXXX-xxxx")
Even your link to the "cheap cycle parts" site, adds it to the cart when picked....
 :-X ::)


43095-0223   HOSE-BRAKE,FR
$76.85  from Ron Ayers...

Assemblies where 43095-0223 is used
2007 Z1000 (ZR1000B7F) - Front Master Cylinder
2008 CONCOURS 14 ABS (ZG1400A8F) - Brake Piping
2008 Z1000 (ZR1000B8F) - Front Master Cylinder
2009 CONCOURS 14 ABS (ZG1400A9F) - Brake Piping

as for the ZX1400 crossover,
Assemblies where 43095-0611 is used
2013 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400FDF) - Brake Piping
2013 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400FDFA) - Brake Piping
2014 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400FEFA) - Brake Piping
2015 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400FFFA) - Brake Piping
2015 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400FFFB) - Brake Piping
2016 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400HGF) - Brake Piping
2017 NINJA ZX-14R ABS (ZX1400HHF) - Brake Piping

That's really good to know.  Thanks a lot for the information.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2019, 07:44:17 pm by Illo »
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Offline Illo

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It's the standard line on '08-'09 bikes..., you bleed the furthest point (left caliper) first... pushing the air to and out of it.... then bleed the right one...
Or, with the left caliper disconnected from the mounts, and a wood block in place between the pads, and the caliper raised higher than the right side caliper mounted on the bike, pick which you want to bleed first... and do them both... bubbles rise...hydraulic pressure pushes them...to the bleeder.

That's an excellent trick, to raise the calipers.  That should definitely do it.  Now can you please tell me if having a vacuum pump is necessary for getting the air out?  I've never seen it done.  But in the earlier Randy N posts, he always referred to a vacuum pump and a hose that sucked oil from a can of oil.  I didn't quite understand what he was doing.
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Offline Illo

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If you're referring to trail braking, have you looked at this thread and watched the video?


I didn't use the term trail braking in any of my posts intentionally to avoid making this topic related to braking techniques and whether it is necessary to have and use the rear brake at all.  Wanted to keep the discussion on the hydraulic system of the brakes.  But since you mentioned it, yes, I have watched several videos and indeed try to use this technique to the best I can.  I use the front brake, with no rear brake, approaching a turn and slowing down.  Do not let go of the brake lever and Keep it gently squeezed but gently releasing it as I approach the apex, until I feel the speed is  slow enough to make it through the curve.   However, on more than a few occasions I found that I misjudged the speed, or the exact location of the apex, and realized that damn, I released the front lever too early.  In some scenarios I found that out when I was too close to the right side of the road and gravel and was almost to the point of sliding off the road.  Or I was about to go into a ditch with just a few hundreds of a second to react.  Now what do I do.  In that moment right in the middle of the curve, while I am already leaning as much as I can, with the front lever already released, I would be scared sh**less to grab the front lever again.  If I did that, the bike wants to stand up.  It is at that moment that I feel, as well as a few other people saying here, that a  very slight touch of the rear pedal would cause the bike to lean more than I was able to, without any more physical effort on my part.  Another fellow is referring to this moment of the extra leaning with the aide of a slight touch on the rear pedal as "tightening the line".  So this is what I have done on more that a few occasions to get through some scary situations. 

Now for me it is still to be seen and to experiment with the linked brakes, with the setting on low, to see if in that situation with the a very slight tap on the pedal, whether the front brake wants to make a big enough intrusion to defeat the purpose of wanting to get help from the rear brake to lean more.  And, instead the front brake would overcome the physics of the rear brake and would cause the opposite effect.
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It's the standard line on '08-'09 bikes..., you bleed the furthest point (left caliper) first... pushing the air to and out of it.... then bleed the right one...
Or, with the left caliper disconnected from the mounts, and a wood block in place between the pads, and the caliper raised higher than the right side caliper mounted on the bike, pick which you want to bleed first... and do them both... bubbles rise...hydraulic pressure pushes them...to the bleeder.

That's an excellent trick, to raise the calipers.  That should definitely do it.  Now can you please tell me if having a vacuum pump is necessary for getting the air out?  I've never seen it done.  But in the earlier Randy N posts, he always referred to a vacuum pump and a hose that sucked oil from a can of oil.  I didn't quite understand what he was doing.

if you are well versed in bleeding brakes, (i.e., done them a zillion times, and have the routine down pat), you don't need a vac to accomplish it... just time, fluid, and care.

that said, everyone likes the "shortcut", as many do not know the difference between "gently breaking the bleeder open" and "opening it up", so it become an exercise to "pressurize/crack/close/repeat" bleeders correctly...
Randy N was having "issues" after disconnecting, and plugging a line, that had air in it, and thus why he was getting "error code" readings... like I kinda mentioned about how this system is a bit "more than a block"... the electronics sensed, and attempted to actuate pumping to accommodate the differential pressure being sensed in the internal valving... on the ABS unit.  All this "stuff" actively feed back into the ECU's, and when it does... well... you get what you get.
I'll also caution you on "following Randy N" without using discretion, he had "an agenda" he wanted to accomplish, and his "experiment", was not perfect...
If you go to his profile, and read ALL of the posts he made, and specifically those about this brake mod thing.. you will find it was not the "perfect" solution, as he preferred to be able to "lock up" his rear brakes when so desired... thus, his mods de-link the front to back "true ABS", and result in ABS on front ONLY...
I've had the rear's kick in on my '08, and it WAS beneficial, I've also had the fronts kick in, again, fine, and I've had BOTH kick in, mind you I do not have linked brakes, just ABS, and I find that any loss of any separate function, is a loss that could have severe outcome when called upon...
I also have a C10, normal brakes, and a '78 Kz1000, again, old style brakes... all are different, but I know what each one will do, when I call upon them in a panic stop.

30 YEARS OF KAW.....Rich R. (the other one..)  COG 5977  JUSTAMEMBAHNOW
and if you are gonna call me names... it's MR. Analdweeb if you please...

Offline Freddy

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As MOB says, there's absolutely no problem in bleeding the front calipers with the crossover fitted - after all, it's the same arrangement as the series 1 bike.  No need to drill the fender or anything else as the holes for the hose support clips are there. 

Regarding the availability of the early ZG1400 crossover hose, a fellow rider here (DownUnder) recently tried to purchase it from Kaw to do the de-link, to be told it was NLA (perhaps because the bike is now 10 years old) so he purchased the ZX14 ABS hose which is fitted to the current model. 


The handful of riders I personally know who have done this de-link are not reverting to the stock arrangement.   :)
The best substitute for brains is ..............what?

Offline Illo

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The handful of riders I personally know who have done this de-link are not reverting to the stock arrangement.   :)


Thanks Freddy.  That's very reassuring.    :)
2012 Concours

Offline The Pope

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I'm a little late to this party, but yes, this concept had been discussed before. I also have acquired the front crossover hose, but I haven't installed it yet as I was thinking that I'd might buy an aftermarket stainless front brake line kit for an 08/09 ABS instead.
The Pope
2011 Atomic Silver C-14 (aka TheImprovedSilverDammit)

"The Universe is a contest between engineers making things idiot-proof and God making bigger idiots. So far, God is winning by a wide margin." (Unknown author, well I don't know who said it.)

Offline Illo

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Well, I took the plunge today.  Here is my order form:


2012 Concours