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Stylish brake pads

Updated on March 15, 2015

How do brake plates work?

Like onions, they are an aggregate. Start from the wheel's axis where the disc brakes are attached. You will notice them on either side. Right over them you'll see the brake caliper. Further on you'll notice two cables entering the brake lever. The two cables and the caliper contain brake liquid.

This is how it looks like but how does it work? Let's assume that you press the brake lever. This means that you create a pressure into the liquid, which needs to go into the caliper. Because of that pressure, the caliper presses over the pads, the pads over the disk and the motorcycle stops.

If you still need explanations, please watch the very short and clear video below.

How do disc plates work?

Why should you change the brake pads?

Have you ever heard about lining? It is a material made of metal and asbestos. If you stick the lining to another thin layer of metal you'll have a brake pad. The problem is that over time asbestos is consumed and the brake contact will be made by metal only. The disc is from metal too. Can you imagine how two metal surfaces rubbing each other sound like? Awful. There will be scratches too.

Besides, brakes will become weaker and I'm sure that you don't want this, so change them on time.

When should you retire the brake pads?

It depends how you drive. If you always press the brakes at the last moment to save your life, you will probably have to change them more often. Personally, I change them every season because all the brakes from the world hate me. I managed to destroy the brakes of my bicycle, my dad's car and my motorcycle while driving very safe on the road. Anyway, there are two options to use if you want to know when it's time for shopping pads:

  • the maximum number of kilometers before you must change the pads is specified in your motorcycle's technical book
  • there is a more efficient way, but you need a little bit of experience: you simply look at the brake system. You don't need to dismantle anything, you simply look it from up downards, at the front wheel, where the caliper is. You need experience in order to know how a used pad looks like compared to a new one.

What brake pads should you buy?

There are three sources of brake pads:

  • the dealership - you will find excellent quality here but high prices too.
  • the importers and distributors - the best price/quality ratio
  • the scooter-shops - they are the cheapest, but perfectly unsuited for a motorcycle. I don't recommend them. Those pads are designed to stop some tens of kilos, not hundreds of them.

A last tip: before buying something online, please read the exchange rate carefully. The total price may be higher than expected.

How do you find the right brake pads?

Unlike batteries or spark plugs, there isn't any special code for brake pads. But you can use the motorcycle series, a code made of numbers and letters. You can find it written on the frame or in the registration certificate. It's a long one, very long, don't even try to memorize it.

Let's suppose that your series starts with VTMJC31. It's enough to keep in mind "JC31" in order to find the right brake pads. Pay attention! Just because you find your motorcycles' name in the product description it doesn't mean that the pads are fitted for it. Look for your vehicle's year, engine capacity and the code.

How to switch the brake pads?

Let's suppose you finished shopping for your pads and you're very happy with your acquisition. Now change your clothes for some sporty ones, put some gloves to protect your trendy nails and let's assemble the pads in 7 steps only!

Ingredients

  • imbus key 1
  • screwdriver 1, plain
  • brake pads 2, new
  • man 1, just in case
  • wrench 1

Step 1

There are 2 screws that keep the caliper close to the telescope.
There are 2 screws that keep the caliper close to the telescope.

Step 2

Remove them with a wrench.
Remove them with a wrench.

Step 3

Then open those two little caps with a screwdriver.
Then open those two little caps with a screwdriver.

Step 4

Open the screws under the caps with a hex key.
Open the screws under the caps with a hex key.

Step 5

If you don't have enough force, you can form an assemble as shown here.
If you don't have enough force, you can form an assemble as shown here.

Step 6

Don't forget to grease the screws to make it easier to change the brake pads next time.
Don't forget to grease the screws to make it easier to change the brake pads next time.

Step 7 (the last one)

Here are the lovely new brake pads! You simply remove them from the caliper and place the new ones. They have to be parallel one to each other. If they don't, use a screwdriver to separate them.
Here are the lovely new brake pads! You simply remove them from the caliper and place the new ones. They have to be parallel one to each other. If they don't, use a screwdriver to separate them.

Work time

Prep time: 30 min
Cook time: 15 min
Ready in: 45 min
Yields: Disassembly and assembly

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