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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I bought 06 ZX6R last year that came with ~20K miles. I have not done much work on it except for replacing some plastic parts I damaged when lowsided on track days. My thoughts were the bike was not worth expensive upgrades, still I paid a pro shop to rebuilt forks and shock, installed ohlins valve kit while at it. As my ownership went I learned that the previous owner was an amateur ******* jackass. He (or she) meddled with electric harness, yet instead of crimping connectors like normal people do he decided soldering was the answer. And where it was not holding very well the electric tape came to the rescue. Moron. I fixed a few that I could find, but one was especially bad because I did not find it in time. The bike shutoff in the middle of a track, lucky I was able to run off to the grass and safely stop it. First, I thought the bike was low on fuel, I took me good half an hour to find one more loose wire that was feeding the fuel pump. I could reattach it and finish the day, missed only one session. Fixed it properly later of course. Other issues included missing fasteners and bolts all over the body, right side fuel tank mounting bolt was none, the seat was holding on one screw too. Drive chain just covered in rust. So, the bike turned out to be a lemon, a money pit. But the engine runs strong, so it's okay.
This spring I decided to perform brake maintenance, judging by overall bike's condition I thought the previous owner did not bother changing brake fluid either.
I bought in advance galfer lines, MC rebuild kit 43020-0012, rear and front calipers rebuild kits too (oem that is) and was all set for spending a weekend along with my bike. The rear caliper rebuild went nice and easy, put the caliper back on, flushed with fresh dot4, bled and I could not be happier. The pedal travel is very short and firm.
The front, however, was giving me all kinds of woes. First, I could not quite identify what kind of brake fluid was there, it seemed thicker and oiler than regular dot4, deeper amber color too. But at the time it did not matter much to me as I was going to clean to entire system anyway. The fluid reservoir had some sediment at the bottom, more like a goo. The cylinders in the calipers had much of this gooey substance collected as well.

I did not take long to rebuild, assemble, and bleed. But no pressure. It took me, I am not lying, an hour pumping the lever just to get caliper pistons to protrude so the pads finally touched the discs. I thought I bled it not well enough, used up all the brake fluid, no air, no bubbles... no pressure either. Finally, I got to the point where brakes were just sorta working. Long lever travel and squishy feel but it was engaging at last. I wasted entire weekend on just front brake. Frustrated, I put old parts into MC. But bizarre thing was that with the old parts MC refused to work at all, not even bleed. The piston, once pushed in to bore would not return. So, I rebuilt it again with new parts but at no avail. Long lever travel and squishy feel.
By now two weekends wasted and I gave up. At last, I decided to buy used '09 MC as I read on the forums it should fit. Not ready to upgrade calipers yet, but we'll see.
I've owned 2006 Sportster since new, rebuilt brakes many times. In fact, the rear MC on the Sportster also notorious for its failures, but once rebuilt it performs as new. Why is this Kawi MC such a POS and PITA.
 

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looks and sounds like the standard affair with any 13 year old neglected bike to me........

Yes the 05/06 master cylinder has a small diameter (14mm I believe) for the calipers that are on it and definitely a Brembo 18/19 or 19/20 would be far superior............ but I work on atleast a dozen of the 05/06 and the oe stock master works fine when properly taken care of
Bigger better masters can work better- but depending on use and need........ is it a must, no so much.........is it a benefit, most certainly
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I wonder if "upgrading" brake lines with galfer reduced performance. the oem line was sequential from MC to right caliper to left. Now I have two separate lines from MC to each caliper. Logically thinking it should not have made any difference as caliper pistons need the same amount of fluid to move. but who knows....
 

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I wonder if "upgrading" brake lines with galfer reduced performance. the oem line was sequential from MC to right caliper to left. Now I have two separate lines from MC to each caliper. Logically thinking it should not have made any difference as caliper pistons need the same amount of fluid to move. but who knows....
would not reduce performance

if anything it should have improved it........

smaller line ID
no line flex
shorter (to the left anyways) and almost equal distance of line to each caliper
 

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I had a similar issue with the stock front MC on my '05. I replaced the OE lines with HEL Performance race lines and the MC with a new Brembo RCS19. HUGE improvement over stock but I still need to rebuild the calipers or upgrade them. IMO brake work is the most annoying just because brake fluid is a b*tch to deal with.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
brembo costs close $300, the bike just ain't worth it. I'll see if 09 stock MC does the trick. just couldn't make myself buying another rebuild kit.
and while I agree that bleeding may seem a b*tch to deal with I have done it so many times by now I'm quite comfortable with it.
Hopefully I'll have some update be week's end.
 

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The 09 MC has a blender nipple at the line junction........that's a really nice feature. Hope it sorts your problem.
 

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I was having the same issue. I bought a used MC for a 2015 ZX6. Problem solved. Bought it used. Guy upgraded to Brembo. I got the MC, reservoir, hose, and a lever for $100. Upgrade the lines to Gaffler . I'm very happy with the brakes now
 

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Discussion Starter #9
over the weekend i swapped the entire brake system, MC and calipers from 09 ZX6R.
the bike did not have too many miles as it seemed. Calipers were not dirty, just dusty. The brake cleaner spray washed everything right off so they came out like new.
I had a small fitting hiccup with MC reservoir. On 06 model the reservoir bracket is mounted on handlebar, on 09 model it screwed on MC itself and it was too close to the clip-on. I had to bend it a little, but it fit ok in the end.
Bleeding was nice and easy, still spent good half an hour on pumping all the air out. But what a difference. I did not even need to see there were no air bubbles anymore, I felt it. The lever immediately became firm and tight.
Unfortunately I cannot really test it on the street, all I could do just was quick run around the block. The bike is not street legal.
Cant wait for my first track day this season.

Oh, and it looks like I need to replace brake lines. Again. Darn it. As it appears 09 models lines should be about 2in shorter. Not urgent though.
 
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