Brake Upgrades with ABS - Kawasaki Ninja 300 Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 09-20-2019, 12:21 AM Thread Starter
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Brake Upgrades with ABS

I've looked at previous threads on this topic and there didn't seem to be a consensus.

Common Ninja 300 brake upgrades:
  1. Braided lines
  2. Sintered pads
  3. Floating rotor (EBC,etc)
  4. Transplanted bigger/better caliper with SVRacing bracket (CBR600,CBR929,etc)
  5. Transplanted bigger/better master cylinder

The first three upgrades on that list shouldn't interfere with the ABS system.
What about the last two?

Does anyone have ABS on their bike with a caliper/master cylinder upgrade?
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 09-20-2019, 09:36 AM
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What's the purpose of you wanting to go all out with brake mods? As in is it a track bike or just for sport riding?

Keep in mind that the whole concept behind ABS is that the limiting factor during braking is the tire, not the brakes. Which is exactly why ABS releases the brakes when it pulsates - It's because the brakes are too strong, whereas the tires don't grip enough to make use of all the brake power.

Hence, you want better braking power? Upgrade the tires. Once you're able to lock up the tire you're already at the limit of traction. At that point brake upgrades improve braking experience a lot more than they improve braking as a whole. Braided lines will improve the "feel". Better pads will change the braking profile and how it behaves under high heat. Floating/larger rotor, more of the same. But in all cases the limiting factor is still the tire.

So unless you're explicitly looking to improve a feature in particular (feel, brake fade, etc), you don't really "need" an upgrade. That doesn't mean you shouldn't, you should just know what you're investing in. Start with cheap/easy, get a feel for the improvement, and reevaluate. In other words, upgrade the pads (cheap and easy), then the tires, then the brake lines (relatively cheap and easy)... and then ask yourself what exactly you want and what you're getting from those upgrades.

Hope it helps.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 09-20-2019, 11:05 AM
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I think you could do full upgrade without messing up the ABS. ABS system only needs the sensor and the ring to be left alone.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 09-20-2019, 04:29 PM
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The abs relies on the sensor and tone ring to detect rotation on each wheel. It gauges slippage by detecting differences in wheel speeds so the tires need to be within a specific ratio of each other. Other than that you can change whatever you want.

I suppose if the volume of the caliper or master cylinder changed drastically enough it could cause a mismatch with the abs pump but I doubt it.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 09-20-2019, 06:17 PM Thread Starter
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It's a street bike but I've been starting to go to the track. I brake very late and hard and the brakes get mushy after a couple laps.
I already have small cracks between some of the venting holes in my stock rotor. I don't think my rotor is warped yet but I'm expecting the worst if I do more trackdays..

I'm looking to upgrade to an EBC floating rotor and get braided lines. Considering that I have deal with the lines, an extra ~$120 for an upgraded caliper (bracket+used caliper+rebuild) isn't a tough pill to swallow if it extends the capabilities of my brakes and doesn't require that much extra work (need to drain brake fluid anyway).

Then I just started thinking about the master cylinder too..

My concern is that the stock ABS system is built around some exact brake fluid volume to pulsate to the brakes when they lock up. If I get a bigger caliper, more fluid needs to move around, possibly messing with the ABS system. I am also not sure if the master cylinder plays into the ABS system.

Last edited by ekare; 09-20-2019 at 07:23 PM.
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