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  • 3 pistons front calipers

    Very candid question coming from someone with very little XP in brake calipers standards: are the mounts on the RS front fork "standard" or model specific?
    I would like to upgrade the stock calipers for some 3 pistons ones. I know that PM used to make some but that's what I had on my RS when I bought it, and besides being brick-sized they had the worst braking I've ever experienced, borderline dangerous. Looking for alternative that don't imply the fabrication of brackets.

  • #2
    I have a Performance Machine 6 piston front single caliper on my white bike...SS brake line...EBC HH pads....Prestone DOT 4 brake fluid...fancy chromed rotor... stops fine
    "I'm Ricky Bobby. If you don't chew Big Red.....then Fuck You"

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    • #3
      OK, firstly, sorry for expressing myself badly, by 3 pistons I meant 6 pistons, that's how we call them over here (1 "pot"=2 pistons, 2 "pots"=4 pistons, etc...).

      When I bought the bike, it had 6 pistons PM calipers and the stock MC. Looking back, it was probably an issue with the lines or with one the calipers, but braking was horrendous: a progressive , weak braking until roughly 50% of the stroke then out of nowhere a bite that was almost locking the wheel. Because the calipers were chromed and massive, I didn't really look into it because I knew I would change them for the smaller, stock ones.
      In the build process, I installed a PM MC with a 11/16 bore. Very short stroke with the 4 pistons calipers but nice, two fingers braking. Back then I had some cheap lines and I think they were soft enough to give a bit of line flex.
      I just upgraded the lines to some st/st Goodridge and they have zero flex, it makes the stroke pretty much nil. Not a big deal to be honest, I'm used to this light, two fingers braking, but I wouldn't let someone getting on the bike without briefing him/her...The dude who installed the lines recommended to upgrade to 6 pistons calipers to gain back some stroke.
      So I'm looking at some options. I guess any 6 pistons axial calipers with 100mm mounts should do the trick, but all I've found so far are whether unbranded made-in-china stuff or Beringer. I love the low profile of the Beringer, and in term quality these guys make pretty much the best brakes money can buy, but at 750 bucks a pop I'd like to find something in between...
      Hence my enquiry, I'm curious to know if anyone has installed 6 pistons from a different brand than PM. It's not an emergency, I'm just looking at some options

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      • #4
        Yamaha made 6 pot calipers on one of their early sport bike that are a direct bolt on to the Road Star, hard to come by now.

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      • #5
        Many thanks Roadiemort, that was exactly the kind of product I was looking for.
        It's out of production indeed, the couple I've found for sale are in Europe and at well over 1K EUR a pop, making the Beringers look like a bargain.
        I'll keep looking, when times come to work on the Bobber again I guess I'll just change the MC for a smaller bore if I haven't found anything that fits the bill at a reasonable price.

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        • roadiemort
          roadiemort commented
          Editing a comment
          Your welcome, they are hard to come by everywhere now.

      • #6
        R1 blue spot go straight on as well but they are 4 pot, lots better than stock

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        • #7
          I still have the calipers the bike came with when I bought it in May of '99. Properly maintained they provide excellent stopping power and I guess could, if one so desired, lock the front wheel. Now notice I said well maintained. There's a lube point on those sliding calipers that needs to be cleaned and lubed every so often. After all those years I overhauled mine with new pistons and seals last year and replaced the master cylinder - what a difference!

          Looks like it would be cheaper to maintain what you have. Even after Yamaha changed them in 2004 they still used them on the 950 and 1300.
          Scott B.

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          • Leiurus
            Leiurus commented
            Editing a comment
            Not sure that it's clear in my OP, but the reason for swapping the calipers is not performance related, the stock ones are completely fine in term of stopping power, it is to give more stroke to the brake lever. I got a PM MC with a bore that appears too large for the stock calipers. More pistons, or larger ones, would give more stroke to the lever, is it pretty much zero atm

        • #8
          The stock MC for the 1600's is 5/8" I believe. The 1700's with the 4 piston brakes take a smaller MC - 14 mm I believe. So it will probably be pretty hard to stop the bike with 6 piston calipers and a MC that is larger than the stock 1600.

          Probably making sure that the stock calipers are not stuck on their slides and none of the pistons are stuck along with installing the stock MC would fix your problem. The piston seals are designed to pull the pistons back slightly when pressure is released which will give you a small amount of play. A larger than stock MC will move more fluid at the very beginning of the stroke thus making it seem like there is no play.

          Although there is a small amount of play mine apply very quickly.
          Scott B.

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