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Hello, long time observer, first time posting, so please go easy on me. I have a 2006 tiger 955i that I absolutely love. I keep up with the maintenance as best as I can and fix items as soon as they pop up. With that said, I replaced the front pads and wanted to flush the brake fluid with some fresh stuff. I have done fluid flushes countless times on many motorcycles and have rarely run into a problem. This time around, however, my brake lever feels mushy. Not to the point where it doesn't stop, it just feels like there is less resistance than average. It definitely has less resistance than my 96 trophy. Any suggestions? Anyone have this issue?
 

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Remove the calipers, pump the pads closed, scrub the pistons as clean as you can get them with some brake cleaner and a pipe cleaner or something, coat the pistons with some Permatex Brake Piston grease, lever the pads shut, pump closed, lever back, etc. a few times.
Lube the pad pins and the caliper hanging pin with the grease as well.
That should do it and do the same for the rear as that sucker will crust in place and burn up your pads.
How do I know this, you ask...
 

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Hi........welcome to the forum :smile2:

I've always struggled to bleed Tiger brakes properly, so could be something as simple as a bit of air in the system ??

I would also check the condition of the piston seals. A new set really does transform the brakes.
 

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Had to rebuild the calipers on my 2006 Tigger just after i bought it as the seals needed replacing. I remember having a real issue bleeding the brakes, even with a vacuum pump to draw the brake fluid through.

In the end, I removed the calipers from the fork legs and raised them up as far as I could without stretching the brake lines and bled the lines through again. I followed this up with pulling the brake lever back as far as I could and cable tying it in position overnight.

Next day they were hard as nails & almost 12 months later are still pretty much the same.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I suppose I will try and clean/grease them first. If that doesn't work I can rebuild them. Any reputable rebuild kits I should consider?
 

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I replaced the seals on my rear caliper this week. The seal kit is Triumph part #T2020505, about $42.00. An alternative is Honda part #06431-MA3-405, about $6.00, but you'll need two Honda kits per caliper. Any seal kit which fits a Nissin two piston caliper should work. The pistons on the Tiger are 27mm. Don't take it from me, though; do your own research.

I'm not sure about using grease when when installing the pistons. I suggest using nothing but clean brake fluid. If the pistons and bores are clean and smooth, they'll drop right in. Don't forget to replace the banjo washers if you disconnect the brake hose.

Tying back the brake lever and leaving overnight is also a great idea, as Lee mentioned above.
 

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I don't know about Nissin but every Brembo caliper and master cylinder rebuild kit I ever sold came with a packet of assembly grease.

Good tip for the Honda part number!
 

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I always had trouble bleeding the brakes when I had my 955. It was better when I pulled off the caliper and held it above the level of the master cylinder, thus allowing air bubbles to rise up before I started bleeding
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I finally had a chance to tackle the front brakes. I took the Pistons completely out, cleaned them up, slapped some grease on them, worked them in and out a few times, and BAM.....I have brakes!!! Yay!! Thank you for all the help. I could not believe how dry/crusty they were. I suppose I will do that.back.as well.
 

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I finally had a chance to tackle the front brakes. I took the Pistons completely out, cleaned them up, slapped some grease on them, worked them in and out a few times, and BAM.....I have brakes!!! Yay!! Thank you for all the help. I could not believe how dry/crusty they were. I suppose I will do that.back.as well.

Good stuff........really does help when you have brakes that actually work, lol ! :wink2:
 

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I finally had a chance to tackle the front brakes. I took the Pistons completely out, cleaned them up, slapped some grease on them, worked them in and out a few times, and BAM.....I have brakes!!! Yay!! Thank you for all the help. I could not believe how dry/crusty they were. I suppose I will do that.back.as well.
Do not put grease of any kind on the pistons. Ever! Use clean brake fluid only to ease the pistons back in.

When installing the brake pads themselves, brake specific grease should be used on the slider pins and anywhere the pad makes contact with the caliper. Do not allow any grease on the friction surface of the pad. Do not use anti seize or copper grease. Use a brake specific grease only.

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There are all different types of grease.

From your local auto parts store:
https://www.permatex.com/products/lubricants/specialty-lubricants-brakes/permatex-ultra-disc-brake-caliper-lube/

Included with every Brembo master cylinder or Caliper rebuild kit:
https://alconkits.com/alcon-brake-seals/brembo-caliper-grease-detail

Grease on the pistons won't hurt anything. It will be transferred to the piston from the seal, anyway.

In another lifetime when I had a Guzzi dealership I spent years rebuilding brake stuff sent in from all over creation. Those old F08 caliper pistons would just get crusted in there when the hard chrome plating would rust. I'd have to split the caliper halves, put them in an oven and get the seals to smoke so I could twist the old pistons out with a pair of Vice Grips.
I always lubed the seals, O-ring and pistons and never a problem. Not one.

No problems with the master cylinders, either. Punch out the old with a skinny drift, clean up the bore, grease up the new kit and punch it in with the Brembo tool.
Not one comeback.
 

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Fair enough, Steve.

However, the Permatex product is not intended for use on the pistons themselves. Everywhere else is okay.

I'm unfamiliar with the Brembo grease. Best advice, I think, is to avoid grease on the pistons. Clean brake fluid only.

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If I have any problems with the Permatex I'll be sure to post it.
The last thing I want is to have people cursing me for giving bad advice.

I used to have dozens of packets of Brembo grease lying around, now I have none which is why I was happy to see the Permatex at the auto parts store.
Strange how they say pistons for cars but not for motorcycles.
The only thing I can think of that would be different is the amount of heat generated.

I finally broke down and wrote to Permatex, we'll see what they say.
When in doubt ask the experts.
 

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One of the Product Support Specialists (a Senior one, no less) at Permatex was good enough to respond to my inquiry.
Here it is:

It is okay to use with the caliper piston on a bike.

TYPICAL APPLICATIONS

• Long and short bolts

• Outboard pad backing plate

• Inboard pad backing plate

• Disc brake calipers

• Caliper pins

• Pistons
 

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Thanks for your effort, Steve.

I learn something new everyday. On the other hand, I'm not sure who to believe; I'm certain the auto/moto manufacturers would advise against it.

In any case, I'll stick with brake fluid only. It's what works for me.

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It would have been nice if Triumph had specified plated pistons like Brembo has been using since sometime in the 80s.
It's some sort of proprietary thing but everyone's guess was a Teflon-like substance.

If you're REALLY industrious KG Industries makes some really good industrial coatings.
If I do go back into the business again I'm pretty sure this is what I'll use:
https://shop.kgcoatings.com/kg/product/3000-gear-kote-grey/

I recall them saying that brake fluid won't touch it but I'd double check just to make sure.

You'll want a blasting cabinet with aluminum oxide, ideally a tank full of hot iron phosphate solution, a small air gun and an oven. A pint of the stuff would do an awful lot of pistons.
 
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