Author Topic: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?  (Read 844 times)

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Offline Salish14

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Well, I don't give up easily, but I've reached my point. I'm reaching out for any help I can get. As background, I've changed the rear tire on my bike three times and removed it another time for greasing splines. Never any trouble. Straightforward.

On another post I reached out about having trouble with my brake pads and when I put the new pads on I noticed that the rear caliper was rubbing on the disc. The disc metal it touching the caliper metal. And before I get berated for starting a new thread on this topic, I see it as a situation apart from my pads, though they are connected.

So my dilemma is that I spent the past two nights with the manual, taken everything apart, put it back together, and everything looks normal and fine. Don't see a darn thing wrong. All the washers and spacers and bearings and such, are all there. Everything is fine and in line. Except the caliper is too far over. I don't see any way in which the caliper bracket is bent or tweaked. Nothing wrong with any of the metal parts.

But as the photo shows, the caliper is rubbing. The photo makes it look like they aren't even in line, but that's a byproduct of the photo angle. I have no reason to think things aren't straight. The problem, as best I can tell, is that the wheel itself is not sitting far enough to the drive gear side. Yet it doesn't make sense. The gap on the drive gear side is maybe a millimeter or two. Looks normal and small. And even if that is slightly one way or the other, when you torque the axle down it will squeeze the caliper toward the wheel anyway. I've run out of ways to think about this. I'd appreciate any insights.

Help?!?!
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Offline Salish14

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2019, 01:41:43 am »
Here is a photo of the clearance between the wheel and gear housing. Looks normal to me. I've wiggled and bumped and done everything to see if it will sit any further over, but no luck. And anyway, the caliper spacing from the disc is determined, it seems, by the fact that the caliper bracket sits right against the frame, and the wheel sits where the spacer bumps against the caliper bracket. Meaning, the whole inside guts would have to be shifted to the right, but that can't be because on the left side the parts are all exactly where they should be and the spacers are where they should be, and the circle clip that holds the rubber absorbers is in place and the plate is right next to it...I mean, I cannot figure out what could be wrong!
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Offline Salish14

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2019, 01:44:08 am »
And here is a photo showing the right side caliper bracket and such. Normal. I don''t bother putting in the cotter pin because I keep taking it all apart to try and figure it out.
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Offline ZXtasy

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2019, 11:33:16 am »
Uugh, I feel your pain, hate thee types of conundrums. So just to ask, did you make sure both caliper pistons moved freely back into their bores? One could be stuck a bit. I have only had the rear off my 2013 twice, soon to be a 3rd time, and I do seem to recall there is a notch type scenario where the wheel feels like it is in place on the splines, bet then needs another bump up and in to make the last 1/4 inch. But probably not since you got the spacers and brackets back on.

Do you change your own tires? This is also not likely related but in the hundreds of tires I have changed twice there has been a situation where one of the small spacers was left in the wheel but then fell out on the bottom side during the change process, they fall into the top of my tire changer and hide perfectly. Then when reinstalling the wheel things would not fit up. Learned where to look after the first time...

Hope you find the issue and let us all know. This wold disturb my already fitful sleep....
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Offline connie_rider

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2019, 01:30:19 pm »
Trying to figure this out myself.
I doubt you could get the it back together if the splines weren't seated.
If you could,,, the right bearing, bushing on the right side, and the caliper bracket set the distance to the caliper/rotor.
So I doubt the spline problem..

Throwing out a wild idea....
Did you install the spacer bushing inside the wheel?
  {Forgetting it would possibly allow the right bearing to move deeper into the wheel}.
Thinking maybe you've forgotten that and possible squeezed the swingarm closer together?

https://www.ebay.com/itm/09-Kawasaki-ZG-1400-A-ZG1400-Concourse-final-drive-rear-axle-spacer-bushing/312256098500?hash=item48b3e9f0c4:g:vMsAAOSwe2ZbtzvE

Ride safe, Ted

Last wild idea: Did you just change a tire and somehow warped the rotor?

« Last Edit: June 11, 2019, 01:37:07 pm by connie_rider »
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Offline Salish14

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2019, 01:30:46 pm »
Uugh, I feel your pain, hate thee types of conundrums. So just to ask, did you make sure both caliper pistons moved freely back into their bores?

Hope you find the issue and let us all know. This wold disturb my already fitful sleep....

Great point Z, thanks. The caliper itself is functioning smoothly and I've made sure of that. It's an alignment issue of the caliper bracket relative to the disc. I do indeed change my own tires, and worried I got something in wrong, but I've gone through it and looking at the Kawi manual and can't see anything missing or misplaced. The most likely but unlikely scenario I can see is that the caliper mounting bracket itself is bent. But how in the world would you bend that beefy bracket? It doesn't look bent.

I worry the wheel is not fully seated onto the splines, but for the life of me I can't get it to go on any further and the gap looks fine. If it was much closer it looks like the two metals would touch and abrade. I'm truly stuck.
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Offline Salish14

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2019, 01:34:02 pm »
Trying to figure this out myself.
Throwing out a wild idea....
Did you install the spacer bushing inside the wheel?
Thinking maybe you've forgotten that and possible squeezed the swingarm closer together?

https://www.ebay.com/itm/09-Kawasaki-ZG-1400-A-ZG1400-Concourse-final-drive-rear-axle-spacer-bushing/312256098500?hash=item48b3e9f0c4:g:vMsAAOSwe2ZbtzvE

Ride safe, Ted

Thanks Ted. Good points. I've triple checked that darn spacer bushing. And you can see in the photo I have the right side bushing in place. Funny thing on the swing arm, I double checked the torque on the bolt and it was good at 73ftllbs. But that arm does seem to have some natural wiggle to it. Probably wiggles back and forth a few mm's.

I have eyeballed the rotor and don't see any warping like that. It is not wavy or otherwise distorted. I haven't taken it off and laid on a flat surface, I suppose that could be a next step. Maybe I should?

Last wild idea: Did you just change a tire and somehow warped the rotor?
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Offline connie_rider

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2019, 01:38:44 pm »
Loosen the axle nut and see if it allows the wheel to spin freely.
NOTE: I added info to my first post.

Ride safe, Ted
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Offline connie_rider

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #8 on: June 11, 2019, 01:45:13 pm »
Looked at old posts.
I see that your bike had the rear brake pad crumbling problem.
Wondering if it is somehow related and one of the caliper pistons are frozen and/or not centering?

Ride safe, Ted
« Last Edit: June 11, 2019, 02:03:55 pm by connie_rider »
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Offline lather

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #9 on: June 11, 2019, 01:59:19 pm »
Have you verified that the disk is not warped. I dinged mine during a tire change and it rubbed. The bracket would surely crack before it bent. Possible a caliper mount bolt thread is gauled and not botoming? Baffling!


Offline TimR

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #10 on: June 11, 2019, 03:46:55 pm »
It appears every thing is installed properly from looking at the pics. I think the rotor got dinged some how.
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Offline Salish14

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #11 on: June 11, 2019, 03:56:49 pm »
Thanks folks. Yeah, I'm thinking the rotor might be the issue but that would mean it was curved only toward the right side of the bike. Dished, or concave, that direction. But I think I have to rule it out, unlikely as it seems. I'll pull the wheel back off again and pull the rotor off and put it on a flat surface and see for myself. If it is not that, then back to WTH?
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Offline connie_rider

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #12 on: June 11, 2019, 04:00:19 pm »
Did loosening the axle nut hurt or help?


Ride safe, Ted
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Offline smithr1

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #13 on: June 11, 2019, 04:02:32 pm »
I don't have the bike here to go look but is it possible the bracket that supports the caliper bottom is being forced to the wrong side of the caliper making it torque that way some?  From the first pic the bolts on the caliper do not seem to be square to the disk.
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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #14 on: June 11, 2019, 04:11:10 pm »
I think I would figure out a way to just spin the wheel and see if the rotor got dinged. A straight edge should help figure out the concave stuff rather than taking the rotor off. 
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Offline Salish14

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #15 on: June 11, 2019, 04:53:29 pm »
I don't have the bike here to go look but is it possible the bracket that supports the caliper bottom is being forced to the wrong side of the caliper making it torque that way some?  From the first pic the bolts on the caliper do not seem to be square to the disk.

If I understand your point, I've been looking at that. The bracket sits square against the swing arm, and shows no distortion. As someone said, it would likely break before bending and there has never been any force on it that way.

I think that photo could be interpreted as either the caliper is bending wrong, or the disc is bending wrong. Between the two, the disc seems way more likely.
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Offline Salish14

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #16 on: June 11, 2019, 05:54:24 pm »
Did loosening the axle nut hurt or help?


Ride safe, Ted

Well, when the axle nut is looser it doesn't rub but that isn't a solution right. When you tighten things up, it pulls thing together. The lowest hanging fruit here seems to be the rotor, but barring that, I have no clue.
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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #17 on: June 11, 2019, 06:53:22 pm »
Did loosening the axle nut hurt or help?


Ride safe, Ted

Well, when the axle nut is looser it doesn't rub but that isn't a solution right. When you tighten things up, it pulls thing together. The lowest hanging fruit here seems to be the rotor, but barring that, I have no clue.



Thanks Ted. Good points. I've triple checked that darn spacer bushing. And you can see in the photo I have the right side bushing in place. Funny thing on the swing arm, I double checked the torque on the bolt and it was good at 73ftllbs. But that arm does seem to have some natural wiggle to it. Probably wiggles back and forth a few mm's.



In all of your photos, did you have the caliper mounting "bracket" bolt installed and tightened to the swingarm?
that bracket should not "wiggle", nor should the  tetra links/wheel when torqued up and tight...

I think re visiting that inner rear spacer tube, that spaces the drive to left hand bearing, needs your attention. I have seen this happen many times.
they commonly drop out, and when reassembled, and torqued, the swing arm pulls in on the right...  and unless you replaced the actual wheel bearings (not noted) and forgot to install the spacer between those also, the stackup should never allow anything like this.

Look again, assuming it's there without looking must be addressed..
see below
« Last Edit: June 11, 2019, 07:01:09 pm by MAN OF BLUES »

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #18 on: June 11, 2019, 07:11:48 pm »
what about that spacer between the caliper bracket and wheel bearing. Is it there? Its a small diameter aluminum spacer very similar to the front wheel ones on both sides. As MOB said that caliper bracket needs to be bolted tight also.
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Offline Salish14

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #19 on: June 11, 2019, 07:25:24 pm »

[/quote]

In all of your photos, did you have the caliper mounting "bracket" bolt installed and tightened to the swingarm?
that bracket should not "wiggle", nor should the  tetra links/wheel when torqued up and tight...

I think re visiting that inner rear spacer tube, that spaces the drive to left hand bearing, needs your attention. I have seen this happen many times.
they commonly drop out, and when reassembled, and torqued, the swing arm pulls in on the right...  and unless you replaced the actual wheel bearings (not noted) and forgot to install the spacer between those also, the stackup should never allow anything like this.

Look again, assuming it's there without looking must be addressed..
see below
[/quote]

I did have the caliper bracket tightened in all cases. Now about that swing arm...I checked the torque on the bolt that holds the triangle shaped wedge piece that the caliper bracket bolts to, and it was torqued properly. But that assembly, without the wheel in place, can rock back and forth from apparent give in the system, a good cm or so. It's quite a bit, but not crazy. That is one of my big question areas. If that swing arm thing is not supposed to be able to move side to side, then when it is all put together it could cause problems. Do any of you know if yours also has that wiggle when it is hanging free of the wheel? But even then, the caliper position relative to the rotor is held in place by the spacer and caliper bracket.
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Offline Salish14

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #20 on: June 11, 2019, 07:27:12 pm »
what about that spacer between the caliper bracket and wheel bearing. Is it there? Its a small diameter aluminum spacer very similar to the front wheel ones on both sides. As MOB said that caliper bracket needs to be bolted tight also.

I know for certain the spacer is there. You can see it inside the hub. There is the spacer that sits inside like the one in the photo that MOB posted, and then there is one inside the wheel itself between the bearings. They are both there. I've gone over that darn manual again and again and the parts all seem to be there.
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Offline connie_rider

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #21 on: June 11, 2019, 09:17:26 pm »
Well, when the axle nut is looser it doesn't rub but that isn't a solution right. When you tighten things up, it pulls thing together. The lowest hanging fruit here seems to be the rotor, but barring that, I have no clue.

Wrong....  I think the left spacer is probably missing. Look at MOB's image.
#1 The right bushing, the right bearing, and the caliper support are a known dimension.
           They set the distance of the caliber vs rotor.
#2 The left bearing, center spacer, and right bearing set the bearing to bearing distance.
              That distance can only change if the spacer tube is missing and not supporting everything.
                If missing, it allows the bearings/etc to move to the left when the axle is tightened.
                {NOTE: this left spacer is located inside the left drive housing, on the axle}
                    It sets the distance between the drive and the left hand bearing.

NOTE: You can not see the  spacer I'm referring to from the outside because it is inside the left drive housing.
           It is NOT located between the 2 wheel bearings. It is located inside the left drive housing, on the axle
           Look at MOB's image.

Ride safe, Ted
« Last Edit: June 11, 2019, 09:22:57 pm by connie_rider »
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Offline Salish14

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #22 on: June 11, 2019, 09:26:19 pm »
Well, when the axle nut is looser it doesn't rub but that isn't a solution right. When you tighten things up, it pulls thing together. The lowest hanging fruit here seems to be the rotor, but barring that, I have no clue.

Wrong....  I think the left spacer is probably missing. Look at MOB's image.
#1 The right bushing, the right bearing, and the caliper support are a known dimension.
           They set the distance of the caliber vs rotor.
#2 The left bearing, center spacer, and right bearing set the bearing to bearing distance.
              That distance can only change if the spacer tube is missing and not supporting everything.
              It allows the bearings/etc to move to the left when the axle is tightened.
    {this left spacer is located inside the left drive housing, on the axle}
    This left spacer tube, sets the distance between the drive and the left hand bearing.

NOTE: You can not see the  spacer I'm referring to from the outside because it is inside the left drive housing.
          It is NOT located between the wheel bearings.
          Look at MOB's image.

Ride safe, Ted

I'm sorry if I wasn't clear. There is no doubt the spacer referenced in MOB image is present. It sits inside the housing as shown and mentioned. It sets the spacing between the inside wheel bearing and the axle goes through it. Once the wheel is off, it is easy to see, and easy to check for. I will take pictures of that to reassure on that point. When I get home in a little bit I'm going to check that rotor with a straight edge.
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Offline connie_rider

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #23 on: June 11, 2019, 09:50:27 pm »
I am not certain I have this right. But loosening the axle helped, so that is where you need to look.
If it was assembled and axle tightened even once without the spacer it is possible that the bearings and center spacer are pushed to the left slightly.   This could cause the wheel/rotor to move to the right and interfere with the caliper.
ie; It would seem that the wheel is not all the way into the splines...

I'm agreeing with MOB that many have been left the spacer out out. {please don't tell him I sed that}
I suggest remove the rear wheel and see if the left bearing seems out of place and is moved slightly to the left.
ie; Tap on the left bearing with a soft mallet and see if it moves.
and,,,, While yer there, check that the spacer is still there.

Ride safe, Ted

If all this fails, look at your caliper pistons and see that all move and retract properly.
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Offline Salish14

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Re: Rear caliper rubbing on disc, wheel not in frame properly?
« Reply #24 on: June 11, 2019, 10:08:07 pm »
Hooray! Well I'll be. Hot damn. I found it. It was the rotor all along. I held a straight edge up to the rotor and the darned thing is as concave as could be. I've attached a picture that shows it. There is a good few mm's of gap between the middle of the straight edge and rotor. Plenty enough to explain the problem.

I knew I had all the parts, and everything assembled correctly! Now I just have to replace my rotor...Hooray!

Thanks for all the help everybody. Hive mind. I'll attach a photo when it is all done to proclaim my happiness.
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