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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I just bought this '86 TRX350, and am trying to bring it up to snuff.

I began looking at the front brakes today because I have to pump them up every time. I bled them to the best of my ability, but I see that the master cylinder will likely need to be rebuilt. I'm somewhat handy, but I'm no mechanic and I'm getting the feeling some of these tasks are too much for me to do, or too much for me to tackle without raising my blood pressure.

If I take this to a shop to have a brake job done and get the cylinder rebuilt, how much is that going to cost me? Are we talking $300 for new front and back brakes and a cylinder rebuild, or less? I could probably handle a few hundred bucks, but much more than that and it's going to be more than it's worth.

FYI, I have a starter problem that I posted about, and I just found another reduction gear kit on ebay, so that will hopefully sort that out:

http://www.hondaatvforums.net/forums/showthread.php?t=642
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Also, I guess the last part of the question is, how hard is it to rebuild it? I am assuming it's just the plunger part under the brake lever that is really the guts of the thing, right? I see kits available. Are they worth it, and fairly easy to replace?

I can probably do the brake pads and all that, but aside from basic tools like sockets, etc, I don't have a full garage of specialty gadgets.
 

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They are not to hard to rebuild not alot of parts if you need any help let me know

www.bikebandit.com/assets/schematics/Honda/H00660053.gif
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
OK, and do I assume correctly that the master cylinder set marked as item #11 is the kit I need to buy, or is there more?

Also, my quad doesn't have any bleeder valves or any place to attach a drain hose, that I can find. I just ended up loosening the bolt on the hose attachment and let the fluid drain out, but I never saw a proper place to bleed them. Is that something I have to add, the valve? Or, am I just missing something?
 

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Have you tried looking on Ebay for a replacement? It will be cheaper than $300 and a simple bolt on & bleed installation. Most of the time manufacturers will use the same master cylinders for a few years, so if you can't find one for your year, try a few years newer. You'll be able to tell by the pictures whether or not it will fit.

If you decide to rebuild yours, a piston kit will probably not work if the bore is worn out.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
You mean look on ebay for a used master cylinder? Seems to me buying a used one the same age [or a little newer] than the one I already have is risky. I might find myself right back in the same place and still need to rebuild it.

I definitely am not buying a new cylinder, it's too cost prohibitive for this year of machine.

I guess I need to determine if mine is trashed or not. Any way to do that, considering I'm a novice?
 

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Well, i have a 92' 250x and i have a wore out master cylinder for the rear. The rebuild kit is $22 on ebay. I decided to buy a new(used) master. I bought a new one from a 2001 400ex for $30 on ebay. It is far newer than my atv but the technology hasn't changed much. If you look at the rear brakes on almost all honda power sports vehicles you will see that they all use similar master cylinders.

It really doesn't matter which one you use. You could use yamaha parts if you wanted. They may not fit perfectly but I all tools neccessary for metal fab of this sort.

Good luck!
 

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You mean look on ebay for a used master cylinder? Seems to me buying a used one the same age [or a little newer] than the one I already have is risky. I might find myself right back in the same place and still need to rebuild it.

I definitely am not buying a new cylinder, it's too cost prohibitive for this year of machine.

I guess I need to determine if mine is trashed or not. Any way to do that, considering I'm a novice?
Pump it up to where you have good pressure, then zip tie the lever to your handlebar. Come back later and squeeze the lever...if it is mushy again, the pressure leaked off and I'd say the master is toast. Remember...if your bore is wore out, the piston kit (rebuild kit) will do you no good.

Well, i have a 92' 250x and i have a wore out master cylinder for the rear. The rebuild kit is $22 on ebay. I decided to buy a new(used) master. I bought a new one from a 2001 400ex for $30 on ebay. It is far newer than my atv but the technology hasn't changed much. If you look at the rear brakes on almost all honda power sports vehicles you will see that they all use similar master cylinders.

It really doesn't matter which one you use. You could use yamaha parts if you wanted. They may not fit perfectly but I all tools neccessary for metal fab of this sort.

Good luck!
Yep...there are two major brake component manufacturers in Japan...Nissin and Tokico...I've never seen a modern Japanese bike or ATV that did not use one of these two brands. There is really no reason that you can't make a master cylinder from a 2005 quad fit yours. The handlebar diameters should be the same, so the clamp will be the same, and your existing banjo bolt should thread into any of them. The biggest difference would be whether or not there are switches mounted to the cylinder (brake light), and how they are mounted. You would probably only have to change some wiring terminals.
 

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you want parts 9,10,11, and 13 to rebuild yours also there are front bleeder screws on the back of the hub just above or below where the steel lines go into the dust shield here is that diagram... number 2 is the bleeder




Go to Ebay and do a store search for GDH Racing he may be able to help you, I know he deals alot with sport quads. Send him a message he's pretty quick about responding


OK, and do I assume correctly that the master cylinder set marked as item #11 is the kit I need to buy, or is there more?

Also, my quad doesn't have any bleeder valves or any place to attach a drain hose, that I can find. I just ended up loosening the bolt on the hose attachment and let the fluid drain out, but I never saw a proper place to bleed them. Is that something I have to add, the valve? Or, am I just missing something?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the info. I will try the tie-wrap test and see what happens. I will also post pictures of my wheels if I don't find the bleeder because I swear there is nothing there that pops out at me that says 'bleeder'. I'm a novice, but I'm not a complete idiot....not complete :)

Thanks for the information. When I have more info I'll post it up.
 

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Harbor freight tools...

Brake bleeder and vacuum pump: $19.95.

Just got the ad today. If you don't have one near you, buy online.
 

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Just picked one up the other day. I had a air lock on my xt350 and that was the only way to get it out.
 

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Discussion Starter #13

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That is what I use Harbor freight for, The tools that get used a couple times a year at the most. I would not buy something from there if I needed it everyday or a tool that is frequently used.
 

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This?

http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/displayitem.taf?Itemnumber=92474

I expect this is a lower quaility tool kit, but I won't be running a shop with it, just using it a few times in my life time, so it will be OK?
That actually looks better than my MightyVac kit...which has a plastic body. The only thing I don't like about the Harbor Freight kit is that the main hoses are not clear, so you cannot see if you're still getting air bubbles or not. You might want to replace them with some clear tubing (if the pic is a good representation of what you'll get).
 

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Discussion Starter #16
OK, I said I wasn't a complete idiot, but not so fast.

I found the bleeder valve. It was on the back side of the wheel, not the front side. Those tricky engineers. :eek: It helps if you put it on a jack and take the wheel off. Go figure.

The right side wheel has plenty of 'squirt' and seems bled. The left side wheel hardly gets anything out of it, and I think I'll have to wait to get my new vac tool before I can get it bled properly.

I'm running the overnight tie-wrap test now on the MC. :cool:
 

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Bleeding is simple.....make sure you can loosen the bleeder screws up before you start... now take off the brake resovior cap fill it up with brake fluid leaving the cap off open the bleeder screw (do one side at a time) DO NOT TOUCH the lever, you are gravity bleeding, let it drip for a few minutes make sure you keep the resovior full.. after that has dripped for a bit tighten the screw up, top off the fluid and put the cap back on. now grab the lever and pul it in let it out pull it in let it out do this about 4 or 5 times on the last time pull it all the way in to the bars and hold it with that trusty ziptie now got to your bleed screw and open it it should squirt out pretty good, if it bubbles or spits repeat the pumping steps, have a few zipties handy or another person. keep repeating until you get a steady stream of fluid. once you do start all over on the other side.

This saves money on the bleeder kit. put it in your tank and ride.
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
I sort of did it that way, perhaps not as detailed, but that's basically the procedure I followed. The left side has barely any fluid coming out when left open to gravity bleed. The right side flows out freely.

The left side also has barely any come out when pumped while the right side squirts out.

I ordered the brake tool yesterday so I will try to clean out the left side and get it flowing better.

However, I ran the tie-wrap test last night, and this morning the lever was limp again. Does that definitely mean the cylinder is completely hosed and I'd be wasting money rebuilding it, or, might it benefit from being rebuilt?
 

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The tie-wrap test won't necessarily indicate anything until you get the air out of the system. It's meant to tell you if you are maintaining hydraulic pressure, but if you have air in the system you probably won't be able to. You can always try rebuilding it, I don't think those kits cost too much. Personally, I wouldn't mess with it...I'd just buy a new/used master off of ebay. Again, it doesn't have to be for your year, make, and model...if it will bolt on to your handle bars, it should work fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
OK. I guess I still come back to my original question. If I buy a used one and it's also bad, then I'm right back to where I was before, except out more money.

I would feel comfortable buying a newer one. I just need to be able to determine if it will fit.
 
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