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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just picked up my first bike - 2004 Bonneville black with 9800 miles. The bike is pretty much flawless except the front brake pulsates more than is acceptable to me.

Reading the posts on this site, it seems like the EBC floating rotor and matching pads is the way to go. I plan to change the rotor and pads myself (I have been wrenching on cars for 35 years), but have one question: the threads say to apply moderate heat to the rotor bolts and use an impact wrench. My question is which type of wrench?

I have a pneumatic impact wrench I used with my air compressor that has four settings - I use the highest setting to remove car wheels. I have a Makita cordless impact wrench and I have one of those types that you hit with a hammer (forgotten what you call them). Which is the tool of choice?

Thanks
 

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Mine came right off with a big wrench (2' breaker bar). Had they resisted, I'd have taken a propane torch to them. I don't think you'll have much trouble. Don't forget a little loctite when you put if back together.
 

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I just picked up my first bike - 2004 Bonneville black with 9800 miles. The bike is pretty much flawless except the front brake pulsates more than is acceptable to me.
Make sure it isn't an out-of-true wheel hub first, or else replacing rotors won't solve the problem. I had a replacement rotor (under warranty) and then when that one also seemed to warp I asked the techie to check the hub. It was misaligned, and I got a whole new wheel (also under warranty). Your warranty is no doubt expired, but if the problem is the hub, at least you can fix the root cause.
Bob
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Make sure it isn't an out-of-true wheel hub first, or else replacing rotors won't solve the problem. I had a replacement rotor (under warranty) and then when that one also seemed to warp I asked the techie to check the hub. It was misaligned, and I got a whole new wheel (also under warranty). Your warranty is no doubt expired, but if the problem is the hub, at least you can fix the root cause.
Bob
I there a way to check this at home? My nearest Triumph dealer is 60 miles away.

Also, how likely is it to be the hub? I've read that untrue hubs happen with this bike, but I've also read that the factory rotors warp readily so I am assuming a warped rotor is the more likely cause.
 

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I would think that if the hub is slightly out-of-true, the floating disc would be the cheapest solution. Since the part of the disc that fastens to the hub isn't hard-fastened to the braking surface, maybe???
 

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I would try your impact driver (the one you hit with a hammer) as it will give a sharp twist to break the bolt loose while forcing the allen head into the bolt socket rather than trying to torque it out of the socket the way an impact gun will occasionally do, even when you lean on it hard. Make sure you use the right size metric allen socket, not a "close counts" standard that might turn inside the bolt under pressure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I appreciate all the responses.

One more question: What's a good way to lift the front of the bike?

I don't have a center stand and I tried my hydralic car jack with a board between it and the frame (covered the board with rubber) and it raised the bike, but it wanted to fall over.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Mine came right off with a big wrench (2' breaker bar). Had they resisted, I'd have taken a propane torch to them. I don't think you'll have much trouble. Don't forget a little loctite when you put if back together.
Yup - 2' breaker bar did the trick. I loosened the bolts about a half turn while the cycle was on the ground. No heating, no stripped bolts.
 

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I appreciate all the responses.

One more question: What's a good way to lift the front of the bike?

I don't have a center stand and I tried my hydralic car jack with a board between it and the frame (covered the board with rubber) and it raised the bike, but it wanted to fall over.
If you don't have a centre stand (this is one reason I wouldn't be without one) put a piece of stout steel rod through the centre stand mount holes. Stack up some spacers under the ends of the rod to get the bike level like it was on a stand. Then put your jack and board under the engine.
 

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I think why they say to heat them is to melt the loctite they use at the factory.If you use red loctite you have to heat it to get it off,it locks bolts for good unless heated.
 

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I think why they say to heat them is to melt the loctite they use at the factory.If you use red loctite you have to heat it to get it off,it locks bolts for good unless heated.
Factory uses standard blue loctite.
I got a fiver that says you will need neither an inpact wrench or a 2' long breaker.

I used a standard 1/2" drive breaker to do mine.
easy.
cleaned old locktite off and reapplied some fresh.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
It was blue loctite on mine and with 9800 miles on the bike when I bought it, I'm pretty sure I was the first to change the rotor.

Anyway, I finished the job tonight (my first motorcycle repair :)). Between my Haynes manual and all the good instructions on this site, it was an easy job. Took about two hours.

The new EBC floating rotor is great. I had a ton of pulsating before and I have zero now. The new brakes aren't as strong yet, but I've only gone about 10 miles on them and I've read it takes a 100 miles or so for them to fully seat.

The bike used to lunge up and down at the end of every stop and now it glids to a perfectly smooth stop every time.

I appreciate all the help from this site and from those of you that weighed in on this thread.

Todd
 

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Good to hear it went well for you. I put new EBC rotors on last week because I had the same problem. I checked mine with precision measuring tools though. I put a dial indicator (plunger style) against both the rim and the rotors to check for run out, when the rotor had failed, I further checked its thickness all the way around with a micrometer.

These are especially handy tools if you're doing this type of work, and essential if you're doing your valve clearances.

An indicator and base can be picked up really cheap from and industrial tool supply store for as little as $20 although the premium brands will cost several hundred. The same goes for a 0-1" micrometer, I've got several ranging from $18 to $200.

Doing your own valve clearances saves hundreds of dollars - last time I did mine it cost me about $40 then another $40 for the oil change.
 

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i just put that in there about the red stuff so he wouldnt get the wrong stuff.I am not sure the blue used on a lot of new factory bikes ,cars and so is the same as we buy in the store anyway .The stuff they use on some car brakes is much tougher stuff it looks blue to.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
If you don't have a centre stand (this is one reason I wouldn't be without one) put a piece of stout steel rod through the centre stand mount holes. Stack up some spacers under the ends of the rod to get the bike level like it was on a stand. Then put your jack and board under the engine.
I ended up buying the sears aluminum stand. It works well, but the extension plates must be used to jack the bike up with the kickstand out (which is needed in order to get the stand back far enought for the bike to be in balance). With the exension plates, the jack barely gets under the bike.
 
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