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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Changed my rear brake discs in FEBRUARY 2021!!!! Three, count em THREE thousand miles later and the meat was practically gone....I'm talking only millimeters left. Now, either Galfer is getting ridiculously cheap quality or I got a brake dragging problem. I'm gonna say the latter b/c for a while now I've felt the disc get hot after riding while the front discs are never hot. What's your take?

Manual says "The caliper body must slide smoothly on the caliper holder shafts. If the body does not slide smoothly, one pad will wear more than the other, pad wear will increase, and constant drag on the disc will raise brake and brake fluid temperature. •Check to see that the caliper holder shafts are not badly worn or stepped, and that the rubber friction boots are not damaged.

What's the most likely culprit? Caliper holder shafts not lubricated enough? Pedal spring worn out so pedal constantly engaged. Piston looked fine when I serviced the caliper to change the pads in Feb (along with new brake fluid). Lemme know what other guys have seen. Some websites say springs are malfunctioning (are they referring to pedal spring or the springs that some brakes might come with that pull discs apart when not engaged??? Like the springs used in cars. Another cause I read could be too much brake fluid. Don't believe that's my prob as it was almost too low when I looked.

Any help appreciated.

Best

Santiago
 

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Rear wheel Brake wear is some thing never heard as the rear brake are weak on the versys. Used only in emegency. If you rear brake is hot , then check for free play between disc and pads , disc , the brake pistons and brake master cylinder.
 

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yea, maybe you use the rear brake too much? as far as the sliding is concerned, it is easy to check if it works properly. I, now and then, lubricate all the sliding parts with silicon grease; the petroleum based grease is not good for rubber.
 

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I had constant issues with brake pads.
For most of the part, it was caused due to winter riding and stuck ( to some level) pistons. Subsequently, repeated issue from this causes uneven wear of brake discs which then, in turn, causes increased wear to brake pads and so on.
I don't even want to count how many brake pads I have changed in the last 3 years and I end up taking apart and cleaning callipers at least twice a year. At least now I learned how to bleed and fill brake fluid with minimal spill 💪
 

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2016 Versys 1000 CBF1000 VFR800
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Check your rear brake pedal pivot is not sticking, as can be a common thing. Take the pivot apart and coat it with some good grease. If the pads wore evenly, then not likely your caliper, but keep them clean too.
 

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2013 v650
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The seals on the caliper are what is used to pull the piston back into the caliper. They are deflect as you put on the brake and return to the normal position and pull the piston back. As the pads wear and you put the brakes on they slide to a new position on the piston. If you didn't clean the dirt and corrosion from around the piston and just pushed the piston back into the caliper you could have trapped that dirt and corrosion in the piston bore and that will cause the piston to stick in the extended position. Most auto pistons have a dirt seal around the piston, our bikes do not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Good catch DDDD. I went through the pads, not the disks. Thanks everyone. Gonna try out some of the suggestions shared. As always, MUCH appreciated for your help. Be safe all.
 

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If you havn't got a race stand; with the side stand deployed,
prop the bike up something like this and spin the back wheel by hand.

If it spins freely you've got soft pads and/or you use a lot of back brake.

If it does not spin freely, trace the cause of the bind and remedy accordingly.
183323

Of course the tranny needs to be in neutral.
 

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MK3 Versys 650
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What pads did you use? GG pads will wear FAST, when I tried them I wish I had got 3,000 miles out of a set, I struggled to get 2,000! By the way, factory pads are HH.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Great responses all. Okay, no, I don't believe I'm putting weight on the pedal as I ride. I just can't believe 3000 miles is normal but next pads I get will be HH to see if that helps. That said, I did put the bike on the stand and spun the wheel and it confirmed what I thought though, the pads are just binding. So I started investigating some more. When I press the rear brake pedal, I can see the piston move slightly forward and then when I release the pedal, I see it move back slightly. So it looks like the piston DOES retract slightly. But that brings me to my question, if the piston isn't fixed to the brake pad, WHY WOULD THE BRAKE PAD RETRACT??? For example, on my honda, the brake pads have springs that physically pull the pads apart AWAY from the brake disk. But we don't have that on our versys. So what pulls the brake pad back away from the disk?? Why doesn't the brake pad just stay put on the disk (wearing away even after release of the pedal) while the piston has retracted???? I feel like the answer to this will help me solve my problem b/c my piston is definitely retracting (I can see it), so it's not a caliper issue, I don't think. Once again, appreciate the help.
 

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So what pulls the brake pad back away from the disk?? Why doesn't the brake pad just stay put on the disk (wearing away even after release of the pedal) while the piston has retracted????
Good question bro(y)

The cross section of the seals between the caliper cylinder and piston are
rectangular (possibly trapezoid?)... Anyway when pressure is applied
they distort, so when pressure is released, the seal retracts the piston
a small amount.

As you can imagine, it is common for brake dust to defeat or at least,
partially defeat the action of the seal and the retraction of the pad ie
pad singular... as our Versyses... or would Versi be the plural?... I digress,
are fairly simple (affordable) machines, they only have a single piston
for the back caliper, the other pad relies on vibration and possibly the rubber boots
relaxing on the sliding components to relieve that other pads contact.

Just to make certain it's the brakes stopping your rear wheel spinning freely,
get a smooth flat tool that you can insert between the pads and disc
and lever the pads off the disc. use a flashlight and visually Check there is clearance
between both the pads and disc. you may have to go back and forth
from the inside and outside pads a couple of times.
When you are 100 percent sure*** there is clearance
spin the back wheel to confirm there are no (other) binds.

When you finish your inspection of the rear caliper
hopefully you will be 100% sure*** of exactly how it operates...
if you don't, I do not recommend proceeding with the following.
(A service manual and/or YouTube can help here)

If you have a well lit, clean and comfortable work area.
remove the rear caliper, disassemble and clean it.

Use Scotch-Brite to polish moving metal to metal surfaces... this step can make things work
literally "better than brand new".
Meticulously clean all the rubber components and lubricate them with rubber grease
leaving just a film of the lubricant on them.

If anything is bent, broken or too corroded too remedy with Scotch-Brite replace it with new.

Eliminating/reducing friction is my second favourite way to improve performance.

Reassemble and enjoy the fruits of your labour.

***If you are 99% sure, you are WRONG.
 

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Without getting into an argument of GG vs HH pad performance, HH pads last longer at the expense of the rotors. Your rotors will last longer with the GG pads but in my experience, changing pads that often is not worth it. Not to mention that on other bikes during spirited rides I had to stop to pump the brakes because of how fast the GG pads were wearing. Never tried the GG pads on the Versys, only on bikes I ride pretty hard, and on those the HH pads would last 6 or 7 times longer than the GG... It ended up being more expensive to buy that many GG brake pads.
 

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2016 Versys 1000 CBF1000 VFR800
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The piston should retract slightly, and the pads will be in very slight contact with the rotor, you'll hear a faint noise, but the wheel should spin freely. What keeps pads from retracting is friction on the pad pins if they are dirty/corroded. What keeps one side from retracting can be the caliper slides... have to be free to float. Remove those slide bolts, clean them up and grease with a high temp silicone brake grease.
As for the pad pins, clean them up with ScotchBrite. Some put the high temp grease there too, but I usually keep mine dry so not to attract dirt.

While the caliper is off and still assembled, leave the old pads in, and now with no rotor in there, press the brake pedal until the pads are together. This will extend the piston such that it exposes fresh piston, then clean them with a toothbrush and brake fluid. Brake fluid is compatable with seals, some brake cleaners may be too harsh and harden the seals. If they are not pitted, then great.

Clean the rest of the caliper with Simple Green or even brake cleaner..... when you're all done, rinse everything down with isopropanol to get rid of residual oils/brake fluid.
Your pads should now float and the caliper halves are free to slide. Brake pedal of course should always return fully.........

All of this is prevention...... do a minor cleanup (pistons and pad pins) at tire change time or at pad changing time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Great information. I serviced the caliper but still feel like it binds slightly. The wheel does spin freely but stops after three or 4 second. Still investigating the culprit which brings me to my questions 1) 3000 mile is definitely a ridiculously low amount of life for Galfer Semi-Metalic brake pad, no? Definitely not normal. I want to rule that out. and 2) When I tried to push the piston in by hand, I couldn't: I've read some guys say it should be able to move pretty freely back in with just hand pressure? I had to use a c-clamp b/c the pressure was just too much with hands. Could this mean the seals are the culprit? They definitely don't look worn out but is there a chance they've swollen somehow (with age or moisture maybe) and so the piston does slide freely back and forth??? I want to find the cause before buying another pair of brake pads to throw at the problem. Much appreciated
 

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You should not need to use a c-clamp to push the piston in. Disassemble again, look for corrosion/dirt in the seal groves. Make sure that the piston moves freely with no seals installed. Lube the seals and piston when assembling. Just the flex of the seals has to be able to pull the piston back in to release the pad pressure on the disc.
 
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