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Discussion Starter #1
Is there any consensus on the best brake fluid? I used to use a Motul 600 something when I raced KTM dirt bikes, but you had to warm it up before it worked. I've read a ton of the brake issue threads here, there's a pretty wide variety of fluids recommended.

Is there a current one that (most) everyone likes?

Castrol SRF
Motul
Some blue one

??
 

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Motul RBF 600 ( racing brake fluid ) DOT 4 , dry boiling point 594 F , wet boiling point 421 F, used this on my last brake/clutch fluid change , brake pull at lever and foot pedal is firm , no sponginess at all , even on back brake , which easily skids the rear tire now and clutch shifting is alot smoother , of course bleeding properly is essential, used Mityvac .
 
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Old Wizard
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The Best Brake Fluid

From the table below it looks like Castrol SRF is the best — which it is. Unfortunately, it normally sells for $75+ a bottle and is comparatively hard to source. Its worth to you depends on whether you have experienced brake fade. If you have, then it’s perhaps worth the premium cost. BTW, it’s used by virtually every Formula 1 team.

The second best choice would appear to be Motul RBF 660, but I have heard that it is very quick to absorb water from the air. Consequently, it seems most suitable for racing applications where the fluid is changed much more frequently. I have not tried it myself.

This seems to leave the ATE as the most practical choice for brake fluid in a street bike. BMW recommends this brake fluid for their street cars mainly because it, like Castrol LMA, absorbs moisture very slowly. One advantage it has over LMA is that ATE has a much better wet boiling point. You can put this stuff in your bike and forget about it for a longer time. Consequently, it’s an excellent choice for a weekend track bike which also sees regular street duty.

All brake fluids come in sealed containers which means they can be stored unopened for long periods. However once the container is opened, the fluid will degrade quickly. BTW, DOT 5.1 fluid is not usually any better than DOT 4, particularly after absorbing moisture.

Most of us don't change our brake fluid very often so the wet boiling point numbers are more important than the dry numbers. On the track, brake fade is our main concern so we necessarily change the fluid more often, and use a higher dry boiling point fluid. Unfortunately as a practical matter, the higher the dry boiling point, the faster the fluid absorbs moisture from the air, Castrol SRF and the ATE fluids excepted.

Keep in mind that the clutch hydraulic fluid doesn’t see the same high temperature conditions as the brake fluid so don’t waste your money on the above high performance fluids. Any inexpensive name brand DOT 4 fluid will work well but needs to be changed on Ducati’s maintenance schedule.

Finally, if you don't change your brake fluid once a year or so, the absorbed moisture in the fluid corrodes expensive brake bits. So, do it in the off-season.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Motul RBF 600 ( racing brake fluid ) DOT 4 , dry boiling point 594 F , wet boiling point 421 F, used this on my last brake/clutch fluid change , brake pull at lever and foot pedal is firm , no sponginess at all , even on back brake , which easily skids the rear tire now and clutch shifting is alot smoother , of course bleeding properly is essential, used Mityvac .
On your 2011 MS?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
<Great reply>
Thank you for those details, much appreciated. My 2014 MS's rear brake isn't great but it's OK, well, maybe that's a stretch. The bike is new, but it was a demo so it has 1000 miles. Trying to do a pre-emptive strike and "tune it up" before it goes to crap. I don't do any track time. Just some "normal" country road riding, and a little bit of commuting, Fair weather. I don't mind an annual bleed, even a bi-annual if it results in substantial performance increases. So I'm thinking to try the ATE, in it's 2 colors, and see how it does.

Biggest concern right now is the inability to properly flush the balanced ABS.
 

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Yes , 2011 Multi.
 

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Old Wizard
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Is this the right stuff?
.
Castrol SRF
.

ATE;
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Apparantly, Super Blue is dead in the USA? [/URL]
Right stuff.

There's still some stock of ATE Super Blue still around, but here's the problem:

http://www.ate-na.com/www/download/ate_us_en/themes/20_ate_brake_products/brake_fluid/download/safety_recall_notice_en.pdf

SAFETY RECALL NOTICE

... ATE Super Blue Racing DOT 4 brake fluid does not comply with the applicable Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard for brake fluid, because that standard requires motor vehicle brake fluid to be colorless or amber in color.

The purpose of the color requirement in the standard is to permit easy identification of brake fluids before they are placed in the vehicle, in order to prevent the mixing of an incompatible fluid in a braking system. If an incompatible fluid is put into a motor vehicle brake system, it could lead to brake damage or brake failure.


Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards

§571.116 Standard No. 116; Motor vehicle brake fluids.

S5.1.14 Fluid color. Brake fluid and hydraulic system mineral oil shall be of the color indicated:

DOT 3, DOT 4, and DOT 5.1 non-SBBF—colorless to amber.
DOT 5 SBBF—purple.
Hydraulic system mineral oil—green.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks. I understood the issue, just disappointed as I liked the idea of easy to tell when you had flushed (by color). I'd be apprehensive about getting old stock on brake fluid. Newer the better. I don't have any heartburn with the cost of using the SRF if it's better at least for the problematic rear brake. Figure one can is enough to flush, an dif lasts any time at all, I'd want a new can next time (?). Seems like there would be a reliable way/container to keep it stored and fresh. Maybe a glass chemistry beaker with a rubber cork.
 

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I use Valvoline dot 4, because the Pep Boys auto store I get it from is close to my house, and it costs about $5 bucks a pint. Reverse flush brakes and clutches about once a year, or when the old fluid starts looking like weak coffee.

YMMV
 
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Green owner of Red MTS1200
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Mine is Motul RBF 600 also, helps keep the dodgy rear brake working longer...

Cheers John
 

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Wouldn't the brake fluid compete with the desiccant to absorb any moisture in the environment?
Might work, as the brake fluid container would be sealed and the desiccant would be in a permeable container.

I guess it would be worth doing something like that if one was using that $75 a bottle stuff. In my case I just pour the old fluid back into the bottle with the unused fluid, then take it back to the recycling container at the auto parts store. I pick up another $5 bottle of the Valvoline so I have it at home for the next time.
 

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From the table below it looks like Castrol SRF is the best — which it is. Unfortunately, it normally sells for $75+ a bottle and is comparatively hard to source.


 

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Wouldn't the brake fluid compete with the desiccant to absorb any moisture in the environment?
Nope...the desiccant is much more effective (by many orders of magnitude I would imagine) at adsorbing moisture. We do this all the time in the lab. I used to have vacuum jars with desiccant that we would use to store precious (expensive) lyophilized proteins. Even gone as low tech as putting the desiccant in a coffee can and putting the vials of chemicals we wanted to keep dry in that. :smile2:



If I were spending $75 on brake fluid and had left-overs...you bet I'd be doing this!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
You can put the container of brake fluid in a larger container along with some desiccant. Perfectly dry environment.
Now to find such a container that can hold the bottle, and some recharable dessicant...
 

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Discussion Starter #19

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maybe you ought to build/buy a centrifuge while you're at it? another level of filtration/separation can't hurt, right?
 
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