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Old January 2nd, 2017   #11
echo
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Default Re: Results Of Brake FLuid Testing!

Many people have noticed how quickly the clutch fluid turns dark. I was reading a Ford Motor Company technical notice the other day about changing brake fluid and it said dark or black fluid is caused by assembly lubricant used when the parts are put together, not necessarily by worn out fluid. Note that we re not talking about normally discolored brake fluid, this is about that BLACK color one doesnt find in the brakes only in the clutch.

Not sure if this applies to the ST11 and ST13 but it might explain the shocking color of the clutch brake fluid. I ll have to file that bit away for future reference.
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Old January 2nd, 2017   #12
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Default Re: Results Of Brake FLuid Testing!

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Many people have noticed how quickly the clutch fluid turns dark. I was reading a Ford Motor Company technical notice the other day about changing brake fluid and it said dark or black fluid is caused by assembly lubricant used when the parts are put together, not necessarily by worn out fluid. Note that we re not talking about normally discolored brake fluid, this is about that BLACK color one doesnt find in the brakes only in the clutch.

Not sure if this applies to the ST11 and ST13 but it might explain the shocking color of the clutch brake fluid. I ll have to file that bit away for future reference.
It does not apply to the ST any model, any year.
No assembly lube is used in the clutch or brake systems.
All Internal Seals and Pistons are lubricated with brake fluid and brake fluid only.
Silicone Grease is used only on the external Dust Seals and Caliper Pin Boots to ward off corrosion.
Keep these clean or you will pay a price.

The clutch slave cylinder on the 1300 lives the life of hell residing on the back side of the engine in the high heat environment of no direct air flow and between oil cooler and exhaust headers. All this heat is hard of fluid but does not reach the level to remove, burn off, moisture.

Discoloration of the fluid will appear in the clutch master cylinder before the brake master cylinder and it will be a clear indication it's time to rotate both clutch and brake fluids.
If it has reached the "shocking color" level you are asking for trouble.
Darkening is not a "shocking color" but it is a clear indicator it's time for a fluid change.


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Last edited by PaulRB; January 2nd, 2017 at 01:20 PM.
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Old January 2nd, 2017   #13
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Default Re: Results Of Brake FLuid Testing!

Thanks!
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Old January 3rd, 2017   #14
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Default Re: Results Of Brake FLuid Testing!

My fluid continues to darken quickly, even after many routine changes and bleeding procedures. Now at 150,000 miles, if any assembly lube was used, I doubt there'd be enough left to continue darkening the fluid at the same rate.
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Old January 3rd, 2017   #15
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Default Re: Results Of Brake FLuid Testing!

So much for that idea....
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Old January 3rd, 2017   #16
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Default Re: Results Of Brake FLuid Testing!

I think the clutch fluid just gets worked harder. More fluid is displaced due to the throw of the clutch compared to brakes, which are mostly just an increase in pressure with very little fluid displacement. Further, the clutch gets used roughly 10X as often as the brakes, just based on 5 gear changes up and then 5 more back down with one applications of the brakes. Lastly the fluid in the clutch slave cylinder is continuously exposed to engine heat whereas the brake fluid is exposed to heat more intermittently, especially in highway riding.
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Old January 3rd, 2017   #17
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Default Re: Results Of Brake FLuid Testing!

Dont remember if my ST11 did this. The clutch cylinder on that engine is on the front of the engine where it's cooled by airflow and easily changed if something goes wrong.
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Old January 3rd, 2017   #18
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Default Re: Results Of Brake FLuid Testing!

Easily changed for sure, but still pretty hot down there. Definitely more continuous heat than a brake caliper would see.
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Old January 4th, 2017   #19
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Default Re: Results Of Brake FLuid Testing!

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Originally Posted by Wjbertrand View Post
I think the clutch fluid just gets worked harder. More fluid is displaced due to the throw of the clutch compared to brakes, which are mostly just an increase in pressure with very little fluid displacement. Further, the clutch gets used roughly 10X as often as the brakes, just based on 5 gear changes up and then 5 more back down with one applications of the brakes. Lastly the fluid in the clutch slave cylinder is continuously exposed to engine heat whereas the brake fluid is exposed to heat more intermittently, especially in highway riding.
I've got absolutely nothing to back up my opinion other than "feeling", but I would have said just the opposite: brake fluid is put under tremendous heat and pressure, whilst clutch fluid just gets pushed around gently!

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Old January 4th, 2017   #20
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Default Re: Results Of Brake FLuid Testing!

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I've got absolutely nothing to back up my opinion other than "feeling", but I would have said just the opposite: brake fluid is put under tremendous heat and pressure, whilst clutch fluid just gets pushed around gently!

Ciao,
True on the ST11, but not on the ST13. (at least the clutch fluid) The clutch cylinder on the ST13 is perilously near the exhaust header and right under neath the oil sumo, both of which fry the hell out of it.

Since I mostly used the transmission to slow my bike down I doubt even my brake fluid ever got really heated up enough to cause a problem.

Except coming down Oh My God Road, Mt Evans, and Pikes Peak.
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