Like the title says, this is a DIY mod for improving your rear brake pedal. Don't know if there is a lot of demand for this mod, but never actually found a thread on the topic; usually just people asking about it, but no real answers. So here it is...my attempt to help you guys soup up your ride without spending a lot of dough.
So out riding the trails a while back, and a little ankle-biter comes out of a blind corner, wrong side of the trail, making a bee-line for me. Well, I lock up on the brakes, and wash the front end out in the sand, and lay the bike down. Pick myself and the bike up, give it a once over and find that I mangled my stock rear brake pedal. Oh well, at least I was on my way back to the truck when it happened. Get home, order up a Torc-1 replacement brake lever, and wait for the UPS guy to show up. Get it, looks great, and all is well, except I have no time to fix it. Month passes, and have a ride coming up, so time to fix the lever. Lo and behold, the lever doesn't even come close to lining up (common problem with Torc-1 levers, came to find out). At this point, I try to modify the lever to work, and it is a no go. Pissed off, cause now I really can't send the part back, and I have an ugly paperweight, and I really need to get my ride ready. Wheels start turning, and decide that I can piecemeal a brake pedal out of these parts. So I disassemble the Torc-1 brake tip, and start the process of making a lever. End result is I have a trick looking brake lever, that rotates in the event of a crash, and has replaceable teeth. I am going to give you guys a quick tutorial on modifying, and the parts you will need. (Modification is done on a 2011 WR450F, but principal applies other bikes as well.
- Tusk Aluminum Brake Pedal Tip (Same as Torc-1): $19.99
- Button Head Allen Screw M6: $.30
- M6 x 1.0 Nut: $.12
- Blue Loctite
- Dremel Tool with cutting discs
- Electric Drill w/ assorted bits
- Table Vice (not necessary)
- Needle nose pliers
- 4mm Allen Wrench
- 6mm Allen Wrench
- 10mm crescent wrench
- Beer (not necessary, but a good way to gauge time. This is a one beer job.)
- Safety Glasses (cause I'm a wuss that likes his eyes)
This mod can be done without taking the rear brake pedal off the bike, but I don't like working hunched over.
1. Remove rear brake lever. Consult manual if needed, but pretty straight forward. Remove cotter pin on rear of pivot bolt with pliers, remove pivot bolt using 6mm Allen Wrench, and unhook return spring from lever.
2. Place brake lever into vice to hold steady, and break out that trusty drill and bit. The rivet that holds the fixed brake tip is what we are after. Drill that bad boy out. I usually start with a smaller bit than the size of the rivet and work my way up. Usually you can remove most of the rivet material with the drill, but if there is anything that is not cooperating, go at it with the hammer and punch. But in all honesty, a Metric sized #1 bit will do the trick.
3. Now that the pedal tip is removed, throw that thing away,
4. Time for the Dremel tool with the cutting discs. Roughly in about the centerline of the brake pedal, where the tip mounts, we are going to be making a shallow trough/valley. The valley is roughly the equivalent of two cutting disc's width. This is done to accommodate the machined ridge on the new brake lever tip. This part will be a series of trial and error of checking fit. Go slowly, wear those safety glasses, and GO SLOWLY!
5. Once you have your valley cut, we then slide our new tip into place, and we will find that our mounting holes line up. Put your button head M6 bolt, with Loctite applied through the hole, and run your nut on your bolt. This works well, because where the rivet was previously housed, there was a machined recess, which sucks the nut close to the pedal, and giving you safe space between your case and you pedal. Use the 4mm Allen, and 10mm wrench to tighten the nut and bolt.
6. Put your new and improved brake lever back on your bike.
7. Crack that beer and admire.
All said and done, a half hour to do this. You could go for more clearance between your pedal and case by using a tap, and opening up your inlet on the brake tip, but it is entirely up to you. I have used this setup for 6 months, and it has held up great. Lever has held up great, tip works flawlessly, and looks trick. Lots of people ask where I got the lever from and are always surprised to find out it's modified stock. This is a great mod for those of us with bigger feet (size 14's myself), cause it gives my boots a little extra clearance. Hope you guys enjoyed. And like I said, for less than $25 and a little bit of time you guys can give your ride a little performance enhancement and bling factor.