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Hey guys, I’m brand new to Ventures and of limited mechanical ability, but I need to rebuild my calipers. I just bought a 1987 Venture in good condition except that the last time they parked it (3 years ago), they lost their back brakes on the ride home. Sure enough, when I went to look at the bike, there had been evidence of a leaky front caliper. Thanks to another thread, I learned about the linked braking. So I was planning on rebuilding the rear and left front calipers. But the right front caliper actually looked like it was more likely to be the culprit. The leak puddled on the right side of the bottom of the rim but I don’t remember if the wheel had been angled such that the leak might have crossed through the spokes from the left caliper. Either way, the hand brake works and the pedal does not.


Do the front and rear caliper rebuild kits have the same part number? Is there a known good source for the kits? What is considered a good price on these? I think I found kits to rebuild all three(no pistons) for around $100. A bit pricey for some rubber seals and a couple of pins, so that seems about right.



I siphoned out the 3-year-old gas and have been running Seafoam (about 4 tanks so far) through it. The bike starts, warm or cold, with the choke on. Once warm, I can bring the choke back 1/2 way, but that’s it. I can get it to idle between 800-1200 rpm, but can’t keep it running with the choke off.


Even idling (with 1/2 choke), I have to give the throttle a little feather before taking off or maneuvering at parking lot speeds. I know very little about carburetors. Should I start by trying to adjust the idle? Is balancing the carbs something I can do myself?


Thanks for the help.

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Brakes, on mine both front calipers were different sizes so betting on different kit numbers not only for rear but each of the front. For bike brakes I have a go-to guy that also helps with amazing tech support. I did not like the linked brakes so I ended up just throwing on some R6 brakes/EBC pads.


When bleeding linked brakes, there is a brake line on the right of the bike with a bleeder valve up high, need to be aware of that during bleeding process, which is also outlined here somewhere.


Mark at BrakeCrafters https://www.brakecrafters.com/

I've dealt with him before, none better. Also he wont sell Chinese parts, some OEM and some out of the UK, so you dont have to worry about him sticking you with unbranded junk.


Since your new here and new-ish to mechanical stuff, I'm going to say something that should make some folks here roll there eyes "here he goes again" haha. Never use unbranded/Chinese parts on your bike, not for brakes, not for carbs, nothing anywhere. We have reliable sources for just about everything between folks here and that information is a search or an ask away. Yamaha OEM (Orig Equip Mfr)parts are often very spendy but there are quality options for just about all of it. I trust Mark not to give you junk, or misinformation.


Brake fluid is pretty nasty and can even damage painted surfaces. Just keep in mind while working with it.


If your not sure if you want to try it have a look at some youtube videos of motorcycle brake caliper rebuild. They are very similar between brands so a video of someone removing and rebuilding one might be a good watch to see if it's something your comfortable tackling. you'll need (seriously want) compressed air and some basic hand tools. The Pistons might be a bear to get out after a few decades of service/neglect.


Carbs, From what you described and how long it sat with fuel in the belly, smart money is on bowls full of gunk clogging up jets. If it sat with ethanol it's almost a certainty, if the last guy used pure gasoline you may have a chance of clearing the jets with the Shotgun method (carbs on the bike), but I would keep expectations low on that.


Here is one of our own treasured members talking about carb synch on youtube, gives you an idea. He's flat out nuts, much like myself, but super knowledgeable and very cool to boot.

My youtube works painfully slow so I wont have many links to it as others may. There used to be a video of the Shotgun carb cleaning method on a Vmax (same procedure), but I cant for the life of me find it. You may see some Vmax references when working with Ventures, the engines and carbs are very similar and procedures are often the same.


Do you have friends with experience/tools?


Congrats on the bike, when you do get it sorted out you should be rewarded with a very comfortable touring bike.


Edited by CaseyJ955
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I second the quality of brakecrafters.com... excellent customer service, high quality kits. They know exactly what you need and are worth the money. I've rebuilt all my calipers with their kits and they're operating perfectly.


Sent from my SM-G955W using Tapatalk

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Hey Todd,

Welcome to the forum! Now, about those brakes. Check the Master Cylinder for the Right Front Brake. It's on the Right Side Handel Bar. If there is very little fluid in the master, then the right front caliper is leaking. The rear master cylinder is located under the small black cover close to the passenger foot peg. I would bet it is the left front leaking. That's why the rear brake gave out, low fluid.

As was said, the left front caliper has a set of smaller pistons than the right front. The rebuild kits for the right front and the rear are the same. The left front is different. The other thing you want to make sure of is the fluid on the ground is actually brake fluid and NOT fork oil from a leaking fork seal. With the bike on the side stand, it might be a bit tricky to tell where the fluid is coming from because of the lean. Try to get the bike on the center stand. That's a better place to work on this bike anyway. If the leak continues, and the fluid doesn't go down in the front master, then it's the left front caliper. Now, about those Carbs! I wrote a little blurb about cleaning the First Gen. Carbs. on the bike a while back, here it is:


CleaningFirst Gen. Carbs. On The Bike

I use this cleaningmethod to unstick a float needle that is causing the gas tank todrain when the bike is parked, or for a Carb. That is passing raw gasout of the overflow tube when the bike is running. This on bikecleaning DOES NOT address the issue of a Carb. Set needing a completerebuild, (off the bike) and does not address the issue of AIRPASSAGES being blocked, and causing poor performance. These twoissues require the Carbs. be removed from the bike.

With the bike on thecenter stand, and the engine off, I select the first Carb. I want toclean. You will be looking for the Black Plastic Carb. Drain Tube,and the screw that opens that drain. (Phillips Head Screw) You willneed a small coffee can, or a coke can with the top cut off, (NOplastic containers) to catch the gas that will come out when you openthe drain screw. Allow all of the gas to drain from the Carb. andhave a look in the can for “floaters”. (Solid particles) With anew can of Carb. Cleaner, insert the red straw in the end of thedrain tube. I wrap the junction of the red straw, and the drain tubewith a small piece of shop towel to slow the blow by. Press thebutton on the top of the can of Carb. Cleaner, and count to 3. Removethe red straw and let the cleaner fluid run into the coffee can. Moveto the next Carb. and repeat. When you do Carb. #4, start over again,and do them again. I use up one can of Carb. Cleaner on the fourCarbs. When the can of Carb. Cleaner is gone, retighten all fourdrain tube screws, (CAUTION DO NOTOVERTIGHTEN THE DRAIN SCREWS) Turn on the ignition switch, (do notstart bike) listen for the fuel pump to fill the Carb. Bowles andstop pumping, check the drain tubes and the overflow tubes (down infront of rear tire) for fuel leakage, move the can with the Carb.Cleaner/Gas mixture away from the bike, (or better yet, roll the bikeout of the garage) and start the bike. (It may take a few shortbursts on the starter motor, and you may need to choke it as well) Gofor a ride and “blow the cobwebs out” (my personal FAV part) ifthis doesn’t solve your problem, then a “Carbs. Off Rebuild”may be in order. On a side note, I run 3 ounces of Seafoam in everytank of gas I put in my 87’and 89’VR because of the negativeeffects of the Ethanol in the fuel these days. Because of my shophere in South Central PA. I buy OEM parts direct from Yamaha, andshare my discount with the VR.ORG members. It would be my pleasure tohelp you with any project you have in mind for your First Gen. VR.Earl (skydoc_17)


For the cost of a can of Carb. Cleaner, it would be worth a shot.



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