Switching to a Honda front brake system?

Hey guys! I need help I've search some threads and seen people switching the yz450 brake calipers lines and master cylinder. Does any one know what year(s) I'd need to get for all those components for a 2003 yz450. All I see is 07 and 08 yz conversions. So please if it is possible let me know what year Honda 450 caliper. And master I need. Thanks!

FIt it with a master cylinder from an '03-'06 CRF450, and the brake pads from the same bike.  That's it.

You can fit the part from a 2002-2010 crf250/450 which would be my first choice. Or a 2000+ cr250 brake would work, but dont try the cr125 i hear it doesn't have the same amount of stopping power. You could also swap for the crf230 master cylinder, it is better than the yamaha MC but not as good as the crf/cr master cylinder. 

 

Make sure you get a set of OEM honda brake pads, otherwise the swap isn't worth it.

 

I did the swap a while back in sections and i found that you really don't need the whole front brake assembly. I started with OEM crf pads in my yamaha caliper (it fits :thumbsup:) and a tusk CRF style braided brake line. stopping power was great but i had a honda parts bike so i swapped in the MC and caliper thinking it would be even better. The modulation on the crf MC is much better than my stock yamaha, but i didn't think the honda caliper changed anything. I then added a tusk over-sized (floating) brake rotor which made a HUGE difference. I'm now running the honda pads/ over-sized rotor and crf style brake line and i think it is the best combo for the money. Because of this swap, honda brakes have gotten insanely expensive on ebay....Its bad enough that i sold my crf master cylinder and caliper, i really didnt feel the performance gain was worth the$$$. So If you cant get a MC or caliper for a decent price i would recommend getting on over-sized rotor since its a better bang for your buck anyway. 

Wow, thanks for the fast replies! Im going to have to purchase a new MC anyways and my line broke on the trailer.. They parts are cheap enough to get the caliper line and Mc for about 50 bucks so I said what the heck might as well, the Yz stuff seems higher. Good to know about the tusk kit, just looked it up sounds good.

Hopeing to get an answer, and i apologize for resurrecting this thread.  But i have everything on order to do the swap but the line.  I have the Light speed guards, the clamps, and the tube protectors.  I am going to order from core moto and they need a specific year, he also has never really heard of the converison.  Please give me an exact year that will work so i can get the lines ordered! 

 

Thanks!

Why? What's to be gained here? 

26 minutes ago, Rob Rupprecht said:

Why? What's to be gained here? 

That's what I was wondering.  My front brakes are stock and work perfectly fine.

16 hours ago, High On Octane said:

That's what I was wondering.  My front brakes are stock and work perfectly fine.

There is working fine, and working better then fine this bike is a street tard so I want to do as much possible for strong brakes without spending big bucks.  That is why all the new bikes went the direct route (when Honda's patent ran out) .  Also the honda masters have a stronger braking force.  Just things I found out when I got the bike.  At any rate i ordered my lines, went with a 06+ style yz line and a stock 04 rear line.  If anyone needs it for reference.  

I've done the Honda master cylinder swap.... waaaaaay over rated mod. This time did a galfer oversized rotor kit and left the stock 06 master with a good bleed of fresh motul. No complaints at all and I'm riding side by side with my 16 250xc

Any advantages to doing the Honda master on a 17 450 FX?? I am coming off ktms and hate my front brakes!! Garbage

The problem with going to a smaller master cylinder diameter in order to get better braking force is that just as with a mechanical leverage set up, you end up a more spongy feel along with it.  The extra pressure you can generate with the smaller master gives you an increased ability to "balloon" the brake hose and stuff.

Some gain can be had simply by using the CRF pads, according to reviews, but the best bang for the buck is an oversized rotor kit.  Add a braided stainless line to it for a stiffer feel.

6 hours ago, Woodsweapon350 said:

I've done the Honda master cylinder swap.... waaaaaay over rated mod. This time did a galfer oversized rotor kit and left the stock 06 master with a good bleed of fresh motul. No complaints at all and I'm riding side by side with my 16 250xc

I went with a honda sport atv master for the brake light switch.  I found out later that guys were saying they were better for stopping power.  For me it was a lucky buy,  all i really wantes was the switch.

3 hours ago, grayracer513 said:

The problem with going to a smaller master cylinder diameter in order to get better braking force is that just as with a mechanical leverage set up, you end up a more spongy feel along with it.  The extra pressure you can generate with the smaller master gives you an increased ability to "balloon" the brake hose and stuff.

Some gain can be had simply by using the CRF pads, according to reviews, but the best bang for the buck is an oversized rotor kit.  Add a braided stainless line to it for a stiffer feel.

Yep braided lines, cr pads, and honda 700xx master cylinder.  Thats what i did, along with my oversize rotor i got with my wheels and tires.. so far so good.. all pretty cheap also.

If you are riding with the stock caliper on the street you will find it easy to cook the brakes. Steel line and motul fluid changed often. If you are going to be doing alot of street riding look for at minimum a bigger rotor.

I understand upgrading to a braided hose and bigger rotor.  I just don't get wasting money on STOCK parts from a different make bike.  If you're going to go thru the trouble of replacing components, why would you not go full aftermarket performance 4 piston calipers and bigger master cylinder?

7 hours ago, High On Octane said:

I understand upgrading to a braided hose and bigger rotor.  I just don't get wasting money on STOCK parts from a different make bike.  If you're going to go thru the trouble of replacing components, why would you not go full aftermarket performance 4 piston calipers and bigger master cylinder?

For me personally all i needed was the brake switch, and i did not want to go with a pressure switch in a banjo fitting.  The fact that the atv master provides more force was a plus.  And i believe to answer your question is $$$ spend a little to get a little. but for a straight road race application you would most certainly want to do a big brake upgrade with a 4 piston caliper ect.

On 5/16/2017 at 6:25 PM, High On Octane said:

If you're going to go thru the trouble of replacing components, why would you not go full aftermarket performance 4 piston calipers and bigger master cylinder?

First, to the question as it applies to pads, the compound is what makes the difference.  Stock Honda CRF pads are more aggressive than OEM Yamaha, and they are made by the same OEM manufacturer to the same level of quality, so there is no argument in support of going to aftermarket suppliers, particularly when many of them actually originate from the same sources, anyway. 

If you want more braking power from the hydraulic system, you want more friction at the pad/rotor interface.  One way to increase that is to set up the hydraulic system to apply more output force at the caliper for the same amount of input force at the lever.  The mechanical lever itself can obviously be altered to provide that, but so can the hydraulic system itself.  With that being said, using a "bigger" master cylinder is the reverse of the correct way to go about that.  Smaller is what you want.  If everything else stays the same, a smaller master cylinder will apply a greater force to the caliper pistons than a larger one. 

The two commonly used master cylinder sizes are 3/8" (9.5mm) and 11mm.  For the sake of this post, I'm going to say that the two caliper pistons are 25mm each.  Assume the lever is 5:1, so a 10 pound pull applies 50 pounds of force to the master cylinder.  The are of the two caliper pistons is 3.125 square centimeters.  The are of the 11mm master cylinder piston is .95 sq cm.  This produces a 3.28:1 pressure ratio, so the 50 pounds of pressure on the MC piston goes to 164.5 pounds.  With the 9.5 mm piston, that ratio increases to 4.4:1, and the pressure delivered by the same 10 pound pull rises to 220 pounds.  It's "Pascal's Principle".

The higher pressure, however, lets you feel any flex in components, like brake lines, same as increased mechanical leverage does, soyou can end up with a mushier feel to go with greater power.  Brake pads themselves also seem to have a reduced response to higher pressure above a certain point, depending on the compound used, like a point of diminishing returns, so the whole package still needs to be compatible. 

Then there's the fact that OEM stuff is quite often some of the highest available quality until you get to a very high price point, so it's usually a good value.

That's why I believe just a braided hose is the single best brake upgrade and bang for the buck.  Rubber houses flex and balloon under hard braking lessening the pressure output at the caliper.  Braided hoses prevent that from happening.

 

As far as brake pads, organic pads provide excellent braking power without damaging the rotor.  They wear out faster making more brake dust, but they seam to have the best bite.  It's possible the brake pads on my bike have already been upgraded to a different pad.  Seams like the PO of my bike had already done quite a few mods, like the safety wire on the a/p pump rod.

SS lines don't increase the pressure in any way unless the line they replace "balloons" so badly that the lever bottoms before you reach the max.  What they do is provide a more solid feel, because they shorten the pressure rise curve relative to the input lever movement; less of the lever travel is given over to expanding the line, so the pressure at the caliper rises quicker. The same maximum is normally reached either way.

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