New Front Brake Pads - Honda Shadow Forums : Shadow Motorcycle Forum

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Old 12-31-2012, 07:24 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default New Front Brake Pads

Hello, I just installed new brake pads on the front of my 2007 SS 750DC.

The pads seems to be dragging on the rotor when the brake is not engaged.
I hear a fairly loud dragging or grinding sound when I move the bike. It did this to a much lesser extent on my previous pads. The handling nor the braking seem to be affected, but should I be concerned? I guess I have a slightly warped rotor.

Thanks for your input.
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Old 12-31-2012, 08:01 PM   #2 (permalink)
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is the grinding constant or just a certain point in the revolution?

that being said.. new brake pads do take some time to mesh with the old rotor.
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Old 12-31-2012, 08:26 PM   #3 (permalink)
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is the grinding constant or just a certain point in the revolution?
It's pretty constant. I can't be sure, but it does seem to go away at some higher speeds. Or perhaps, I just can't hear it.
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Old 01-01-2013, 08:05 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Minor brake drag is expected. Disk brakes always have the pad rubbing against the rotor as it means the least amount of time to engage. It shouldn't be too audible, but sometimes a fresh pad against an old rotor - or a new rotor against an old pad can make for a fairly noisy stretch of time until the pad beds in. Bedding pads has all kinds of how-to's but the end result is the small grooves in the rotor/pad surfaces line up to give the most possible contact between the surfaces. Until this process completes the brakes can be noisier than usual.

Take it for a spin at some highish speeds for a couple of minutes, either some country 50mph stretch with stop signs or a few miles on the expressway. Then stop and feel the rotor for heat - if it's warm/hot then you have too much drag. If it's cool to the touch then there's not enough drag to build any serious friction and you're fine. Be sure you're doing this somewhere you don't have to actually stop much, as it's normal for brake rotors to get warm/hot during a lot of stopping and going, especially if you went with performance pads. They shouldn't heat up at all from the minor rubbing in their neutral state though, and that's what you're trying to test.

If after testing your rotors are cool to the touch then I'd expect the noise to reduce once the pads bed in. There's a 101 suggestions and recommendations on how to do this, but within a few hundred city miles it should be complete regardless of what, if any, bedding process is used. Be sure to leave yourself extra room for stopping for that long, because you might find yourself missing the extra stopping power that's missing in that time.

If after testing they're warm or hot then it's probably just the caliper pistons a bit stuck from all that old brake dust. It's a fairly easy fix most of the time solved by a more thorough cleaning, and working the pistons a bit until they're free. I can elaborate on this if your testing verifies you need to do it.

Last edited by ZackDaniels; 01-01-2013 at 10:03 AM.
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Old 01-01-2013, 08:09 AM   #5 (permalink)
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It sounds to me as if you simply removed the old pads and slipped the new ones in, The pads should not drag at all, if you raise the front wheel and spin it then it should rotate freely with no noise..

I would guess that either the new pads are not located in the springs correctly, or the springs are broken or missing, or the calipers are filled with dirt, or lastly the caliper pistons are a bit corroded and not returning all the way..This last one is unlikely because your bike is only five years old but if stored outside in bad weather it is possible..

The cure is first to download a parts fiche of the front brakes, then jack up the front of the bike and spin the wheel and listen, then take photographs of everything you dismantle so that you can reassemble it correctly, then strip the caliper and compare it with the parts fiche..If you find the piston sticks before it is flush with the housing remove it and use some scotchbrite scourer to remove the corrosion from the inside of the housing..

Don't forget the photographs..they may be very important..

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Old 01-01-2013, 08:47 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Hopkins View Post
It sounds to me as if you simply removed the old pads and slipped the new ones in, The pads should not drag at all, if you raise the front wheel and spin it then it should rotate freely with no noise.
You and I agree on a lot but I'm surprised to see this. I've never had absolutely no rubbing on disk brakes. Car, bike, or otherwise. There's always a minimal amount of contact and it can be especially noisy on new pads vs old rotor or vice versa until bedded in. On a fresh install after all the caliper pistons are pushed in it will be 100% free and clear, but after a few pumps to build pressure they rest on the rotor and minimal drag/noise is there to stay.

If jacked up it should spin with minimal effort, but there's going to be some drag.
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Old 01-01-2013, 09:58 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I can't say for sure on your bike, but most of the brake calipers I've dealt with are comprised of two halves. Each half has a pin that slides into the other half. These pins should be kept clean and lubricated with a high temp silicone grease such as Sil-glyde. The pins are often protected by a waterproof rubber boot. If the two halves of the calipers don't have free movement they can drag. Perhaps a good cleaning, lubing, and inspection of these pins as well as the pistons will solve your problems.
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Old 01-01-2013, 12:39 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZackDaniels View Post
You and I agree on a lot but I'm surprised to see this. I've never had absolutely no rubbing on disk brakes. Car, bike, or otherwise. There's always a minimal amount of contact and it can be especially noisy on new pads vs old rotor or vice versa until bedded in. On a fresh install after all the caliper pistons are pushed in it will be 100% free and clear, but after a few pumps to build pressure they rest on the rotor and minimal drag/noise is there to stay.

If jacked up it should spin with minimal effort, but there's going to be some drag.
I don't think the faint whisper you are taking about is the same loud dragging and grinding noise the OP is talking about..the wheel should spin freely if the brakes are correctly installed, as for the bedding in, any wear on the disks should not cause noticable drag because when the disks are worn they are thinner, not fatter and therefore further away from the new pads, as they bed in they follow any slight impefections allowing more of the pad to contact the disk..

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Old 01-01-2013, 03:44 PM   #9 (permalink)
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ZackDaniels: I tested the rotor like you suggested. I rode on the freeway for 5 miles and got to a parking area with just minimal braking. The rotor was very cool to the touch. I felt some warmth to the rotor, but it was definitely cool in temperature. Thanks for you suggestion. I feel better about it now.

To others that are talking about dragging, I don't feel any drag. It's more of a friction sound. On my previous stock pads, I did hear this same sound, but much less noise. At the time, the mechanic at the Honda shop told me it was fine after I described it to them.

After riding around a bit on the new pads, the sound seems to be getting lower. So I'm thinking everything is normal. I know I installed the pads correctly. Thanks again for all your insights.

Last edited by aaron_jo; 01-01-2013 at 04:31 PM.
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Old 01-01-2013, 06:37 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Lets RIDE!!!
Glad you got it right!!!
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