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Old 05-10-17, 08:54 AM   #11
R1ffR4ff
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Default Re: Brakes failed!

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Originally Posted by ophic View Post
Undeserved. I panicked and just happened to do the right thing. More luck than judgement. I can't even manage to swear intelligibly.

Looking through the footage to find it made me realise that if it had happened at any other point in the journey it would have been a lot worse. I'm filtering in traffic, I'm pulling up behind other bikers, etc etc - coulda taken out a whole lot of people.

The video doesn't look all that dramatic but it's not how I was feeling. That "oh holy cr4p I can't stop" moment is something I really don't wanna repeat.
You may have initially panicked but the fact you recovered to safety quickly shows great reactions IMHO.As you say,it could have been much worse and thankfully it was you on the bike.I also agree with the other poster.Go for a ride on your bike or another bike ASAP.

I always have a fear on this happening as I had a brake fail in a car years ago.Road was clear and manged to pull in ok.

Since then on my Bikes I basically use the,"Hendon Shuffle" method at traffic lights as well as from the lights I keep my right foot hovering over the rear brake in town traffic until I'm sure I'm clear.It's become 2nd nature to me now over the years.

http://www.survivalskills.co.uk/riding_skills_43.htm
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Last edited by R1ffR4ff; 05-10-17 at 08:58 AM.
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Old 05-10-17, 08:56 AM   #12
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Default Re: Brakes failed!

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I'd recommend getting right back on the bike, otherwise you risk that fear setting in. You swerved a bump, you did good!

I find it baffling that a knackered pad would cause this, I'm assuming there's two calipers on this bike or is there just the one? If it's two...the other caliper should have taken up the slack...it's not as if the pistons could have popped out and cause fluid to rush out (which would explain the lever-to-the-bar experience)
Single front disk brake, so one caliper. I think (and I haven't had a proper look yet) that the thickness of the pad disappearing caused too much available movement in the caliper for the lever to compensate. At the side of the road I got pressure back after a couple of pumps of the lever. No loss of fluid. It felt like the lever had broken though.

I rode it home after checking there was nothing that would lock up the front wheel, so I think I'm past the mental block. Gotta wait for new pads to arrive anyway, and I might just put it away for the winter.
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Old 05-10-17, 09:09 AM   #13
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Default Re: Brakes failed!

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Originally Posted by R1ffR4ff View Post

Since then on my Bikes I basically use the,"Hendon Shuffle" method at traffic lights as well as from the lights I keep my right foot hovering over the rear brake in town traffic until I'm sure I'm clear.It's become 2nd nature to me now over the years.

http://www.survivalskills.co.uk/riding_skills_43.htm
We were taught to always cover the back brake in traffic/approaching Junctions. Even as a cyclist I'm right leg dominant as in, I unclip my left foot only which I believe is a habit picked up
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Old 05-10-17, 09:15 AM   #14
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Default Re: Brakes failed!

The good thing is, you avoided any damage to yourself, the bike and anyone else. You also now know the front brake is gonna be sorted for when your missus is riding it, which is good peace of mind.
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Old 05-10-17, 09:19 AM   #15
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Default Re: Brakes failed!

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Originally Posted by R1ffR4ff View Post
Since then on my Bikes I basically use the,"Hendon Shuffle" method at traffic lights as well as from the lights I keep my right foot hovering over the rear brake in town traffic until I'm sure I'm clear.It's become 2nd nature to me now over the years.

http://www.survivalskills.co.uk/riding_skills_43.htm
I don't Hendon Shuffle as the clutch is nice and light on this bike, so I normally keep my right foot on the brake when stopped.

However the foot forward riding position restricts movement at the ankle from the relaxed foot position - ie you have to lift your foot slightly to get it on the brake lever and still retain enough ankle movement to use the brake effectively. You can't cover it like on a sportsbike. Well you can. I did on the way home after. It's just not comfortable for over an hour of riding.
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Old 05-10-17, 10:24 AM   #16
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Default Re: Brakes failed!

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I don't Hendon Shuffle as the clutch is nice and light on this bike, so I normally keep my right foot on the brake when stopped.

However the foot forward riding position restricts movement at the ankle from the relaxed foot position - ie you have to lift your foot slightly to get it on the brake lever and still retain enough ankle movement to use the brake effectively. You can't cover it like on a sportsbike. Well you can. I did on the way home after. It's just not comfortable for over an hour of riding.
I understand.Hopefully and from experience front brake failures are not common.I'm not OCD but I've stripped and cleaned/checked my SV's front brakes 3 times since I got the bike in January.

Once as a check when I got it and fresh fluid etc.

2nd time as it got a little grabby on the front at low speeds(Light corrosion on float pins,polished out and re-greased)

3rd time just because I had the front wheel off for a new tyre and thought might as well.
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Old 05-10-17, 10:54 AM   #17
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Default Re: Brakes failed!

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Have you ever tried riding without touching your front brake?
Yes, I do it all the time, its quite a challenge.
As a bus driver I am trained and encouraged to read the road ahead and use the brakes as little as possible for increased passenger comfort and reduced wear and tear on the vehicle.
This has carried over into my normal off duty driving and riding.
Its not unusual for me to only use the brakes a handful of times in my 28 mile commute to work.
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Old 05-10-17, 12:20 PM   #18
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Default Re: Brakes failed!

well that was a bit of a brown trouser moment, well done for saving the day
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Old 05-10-17, 06:38 PM   #19
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Default Re: Brakes failed!

Well saved.

Lets have a look at the remains of the pad?
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Old 05-10-17, 06:58 PM   #20
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Default Re: Brakes failed!

I'll take some photos when I replace it. I had to put the caliper back on to get it home.

It's basically a rough brown patch where the friction material was. Looks like rust.
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