Looking at the 2020 1000SX. ABS question. - Kawasaki Ninja 1000 Forum
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post #1 of 15 Old 03-25-2020, 07:47 PM Thread Starter
KAK
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Looking at the 2020 1000SX. ABS question.

Hello. I'm considering the 2020 1000SX. It's finally arrived in my area. I'll be seeing one for the first time in person.
As the owner of an '07 ZX14 since new, I have no experience with ABS systems and how to bleed them. While at a Suzuki dealer I mentioned ABS maintenance and was told that some newer ABS systems require a special dealer tool that's expensive and not cost effective to buy myself. I remember he said that if the ABS system used a "solenoid"(?), then the special tool was required. If no solenoid, then the brakes could be bled "normally". Does the 2020 SX require any special tool or can the brakes be bled the same or similar to my ZX14? Is it just a few more steps to bleed the ABS or is it more complicated?
This is a deal breaker for me. I won't own any bike that requires taking it to a dealer for brake bleeding.
I appreciate any help. Thanks for reading this.
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post #2 of 15 Old 03-25-2020, 08:35 PM
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Many here have had the same question and my 2 cents on it is.
Flush yearly and then that 0.02% or what ever it is that's traped in the bypass circuit of the ABS pump till its triggered is irrelevant.

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post #3 of 15 Old 03-25-2020, 09:36 PM
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IMO it more important to exercise the ABS solenoid valves and pump occasionally, just so you know it's there when you might need it. The side benefit is that triggering ABS happens to flush the fluid trapped in the bypass circuit. If you do that right after bleeding your brakes conventionally, then it is very close to bleeding the whole system.

With some mfrs and some models, there are aftermarket tools that let you open the valves to do a complete bleed. BMW has GS911. Triumph has DealerTool. Im not aware of any for Kawi.
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post #4 of 15 Old 03-26-2020, 05:55 AM
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If you look in the manual, kawasaki doesnt specify any sort of different method, for bleeding, than we ever did. They say the pump and solenoid get activated during the start sequence, but I've not been able to confirm that.

I think it's best to treat the system like the radiator. Flush it before you have to and the fluid never gets bad.
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post #5 of 15 Old 03-26-2020, 01:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Volfy View Post
IMO it more important to exercise the ABS solenoid valves and pump occasionally, just so you know it's there when you might need it. The side benefit is that triggering ABS happens to flush the fluid trapped in the bypass circuit. If you do that right after bleeding your brakes conventionally, then it is very close to bleeding the whole system.

With some mfrs and some models, there are aftermarket tools that let you open the valves to do a complete bleed. BMW has GS911. Triumph has DealerTool. Im not aware of any for Kawi.
Iím guessing you have a 911. If not, I have one I need to sell.

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post #6 of 15 Old 03-26-2020, 03:47 PM
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Originally Posted by jjscsix View Post
Iím guessing you have a 911. If not, I have one I need to sell.
Yes, bought one around black Friday time when they had a big discount. Otherwise I'd be interested.

I also have the DealerTool for Triumph, originally for the Trophy SE, but it should also work for the Street Triple R.

Once you get used to having tools like this, you wonder why it isn't available for all makes and models.
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post #7 of 15 Old 03-26-2020, 07:48 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks very much for the replies.
So, what should work fine with this bike is to trigger the ABS now and then to keep the fluid moving and bleed the system about once a year? Sounds good to me.
When bleeding, would you just bleed as normal or would you trigger the system first? Does it matter if you trigger the system using the rear brake or front or should you use both? What's it like triggering the ABS with the front brake? Sorry if it's a stupid question. I still remember my first ABS experience 25 years ago with my Chevy Blazer and I didn't like the pedal feel at all. Pretty unnerving.

I have another question. I looked up the ABS unit and it costs around $1,400. Hard to believe. Any experience with how long these units are lasting?
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post #8 of 15 Old 03-26-2020, 08:10 PM
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Kak, I found it easy to trigger the rear. The front? Not so much. You should find a nice, clean section of pavement or concrete and go for it.

I learned a lot from the time I triggered the front. My arms were sore the next day. It felt , and sounded more like a car accident. The system is amazing, and you learn how well modern tires grip, and how good our brakes are. The back was easy to play with, but the front is serious. I could hear the tire screaming. It was brand new concrete. Despite the screaming, I could see the pattern of my Michelin pr3 on the concrete. It never slid.

I've heard of a few failures on early systems. Our friend Mark lost his and pump on his 2012. Kawasaki fixed it. I have heard of a few concours 14 systems going bad as well on the very early bikes. Really, not common at all. The system is excellent., and really, if you keep the fluid clean. Bleed it yearly, I'll bet it lasts forever. Do the same with the coolant. Never let it get bad and you dont need to be concerned with a 100% flush. Most people dont even do that and it's very little problem.

You guys ever activate the front? What was your experience like?
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post #9 of 15 Old Yesterday, 02:46 PM
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You guys ever activate the front? What was your experience like?
A few times.... with asphalt, pretty easy on brand new tires, much more difficult once they are scuffed in and warm. You really need to be on the brakes hard.

Concrete around here is slippery and fairly easy to get ABS to activate but it sure don't feel good.
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post #10 of 15 Old Yesterday, 02:52 PM
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I agree about using the ABS a few times. I never thought about exercising the pump, more about getting use to it. My 2014 N1k was the first bike I rode with ABS. In springtime on sanded roads going in a straight line grab the brakes. It was very hard for me to force myself to do that. Amazingly, the bike stayed straight and even more amazingly was how quickly it stopped. It does feel funny, however, and I'd hate to be riding near the limits of traction and have the ABS kick in without ever having experienced it before.

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