Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 100 of 120
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jmallory's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    973

    Shortening Shimano XT hoses

    Got a set of 2012 Shimano XT brakes and I need to shorten the hoses. I heard its simple and found this on line.
    http://www.shimano.com/publish/conte...20Trimming.pdf

    Is it really that easy and will it work for the new version of brakes? Anything I should know before I give it a go?

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    empty beer member
    Reputation: WrecklessREX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    290
    Good find and yes my m985s were that easy.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jmallory's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    973
    Cool, did these instructions look like what you did and you didn't have to do a re-bleed afterwards?

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    193
    This process worked on my '12 XTR's.

    Just don't forget to open the reservoir so excess air and oil can escape.
    ______________________________

    "If it ain't moto, it's worthless"

  5. #5
    empty beer member
    Reputation: WrecklessREX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    290
    Pretty much, except I didn't have a vise, which would've made things a little easier. No, I didn't have to bleed after.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    193
    if you don't have a vise you can you vise grips. just sandwich the line with the yellow blocks.

    I would also suggest using a razor to cut the line instead of those cutters pictured.
    ______________________________

    "If it ain't moto, it's worthless"

  7. #7
    empty beer member
    Reputation: WrecklessREX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    290
    Quote Originally Posted by nmanchin View Post
    if you don't have a vise you can you vise grips. just sandwich the line with the yellow blocks.

    I would also suggest using a razor to cut the line instead of those cutters pictured.
    Ditto on both.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jmallory's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    973
    How worried do I need to be about losing fluid when I cut the hose? Guessing just make sure the hose is pointed upward, what about the reservoir?

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    193
    Position your levers so that they are 90 degrees. Just try to keep the hose upright once your remove it. I used a step latter to cut the hoses on so that it's elevated. You'll probably end up holding it through out the entire process anyway. After cutting mine I had excess fluid spilling out of the reservoir.
    ______________________________

    "If it ain't moto, it's worthless"

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    65
    Quote Originally Posted by nmanchin View Post
    if you don't have a vise you can you vise grips. just sandwich the line with the yellow blocks.

    I would also suggest using a razor to cut the line instead of those cutters pictured.
    That's how i did it.

    I used a straight pick to set the insert instead of a hammer.

    Also, make sure to keep some pressure on the hose (forcing into lever housing) while tightening down the connecting bolt.

    I didn't open the reservoir either.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jmallory's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    973
    Quote Originally Posted by willawry'd View Post
    That's how i did it.

    I used a straight pick to set the insert instead of a hammer.

    Also, make sure to keep some pressure on the hose (forcing into lever housing) while tightening down the connecting bolt.

    I didn't open the reservoir either.
    You didn't open the reservoir and it was fine or you should have opened it?

  12. #12
    empty beer member
    Reputation: WrecklessREX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    290
    I didn't open my reservoir either and had no problems.

    Edit...

    Opening the reservoir maybe what allows the oil to drain out of the lever. With the reservoir closed it should hold a vacuum to prevent draining the oil.
    Last edited by WrecklessREX; 02-28-2012 at 04:15 PM.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    65
    Quote Originally Posted by jmallory View Post
    You didn't open the reservoir and it was fine or you should have opened it?
    I didn't open it and have had no issues. The only spillage was from the piece of hose I removed.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jmallory's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    973
    Just got it done. Super easy to do but I did have to crack the reservoir once I had them reassembled to allow a little extra air/oil out of the system. It felt really hard with no lever throw at all until I cracked the reservoir and after that, it felt great. I now need to bed in the rotors and they should be good to go. Thanks for all the advice and tips!!

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    107
    I was going to say, I bought mine on Friday, followed those instructions to a 't', and everything felt great after a 8 mile mild ride

    congrats!

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,197
    I just got my XT brakes and I need to shorten the hoses. This seems easy enough, but I just don't get how air doesn't get in the system.
    don't sweat the petty things, and pet the sweaty things

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    193
    Quote Originally Posted by rekibtm View Post
    I just got my XT brakes and I need to shorten the hoses. This seems easy enough, but I just don't get how air doesn't get in the system.
    It does. There is extra fluid in the reservoir. When you expand the pistons they consume some fluid. after system is seal back up, you compress the pistons back where they were, that fluid bleeds all the air out through the reservoir.
    ______________________________

    "If it ain't moto, it's worthless"

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jmallory's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    973
    Quote Originally Posted by rekibtm View Post
    I just got my XT brakes and I need to shorten the hoses. This seems easy enough, but I just don't get how air doesn't get in the system.
    Don't over think it. I almost did and almost took it to the shop to have it done. Easy to do if you follow those instructions. I figured if I screwed it up, I could always take it to the shop. Ended up taking less than an hour.

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    618
    ...
    Last edited by Flboy; 03-02-2012 at 11:42 AM.

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,197
    So the air can bleed out through the reservoir? Is there a one way valve or something to allow the air out , but not back into the reservoir? Does this have to be done before the brake are used, or can I do it in a few days? You guys preferred a razor blade apposed to the park cable cutters.

    Jmallory, I am over thinking this. Just don't want to jack up my new brakes.
    don't sweat the petty things, and pet the sweaty things

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    107
    I'm a bike mechanic noob and followed those instructions and it was fine. After I was all done, I had to squeeze the levers a dozen times or so and the brakes worked fine. After a couple miles riding, everything was bedded in and working great!

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    9
    My only issue with hose shortening came about by pumping the levers too much, and allowing the pistons to come out too far. By this I mean maybe 4-5mm.

    The actual trimming and refitting the hose was easy. But I ended up not being able to push back the pistons!! They simply would not go in far enough. I had to open the bleed port on the lever and then push the pistons back home.

    In the end I bled them just to be sure.

  23. #23
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,197
    Worked pretty good overall. I also had to fight to get the pistons back in, but I eventually did get them pushed back in the caliper. After I bed in the brakes I went for a ride today. The rear brake feels just right, but front feels as if there is too much oil in the reservoir. Can I take a few drops out through the top cap? I did have to open the top cap to let out some air bubbles when I finished. I have a long thin plastic tube with a pipet on the end that I think would fit. It is used to pull serum off blood samples at work.
    don't sweat the petty things, and pet the sweaty things

  24. #24
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Steamer19's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    342
    Great info here. Thanks to all of the submitters as I'm going to have to do this with the new SLX version I just installed on my bike.

    It would be good to hear more feedback on how far you push the pistons out. How much exposed piston do you end up seeing?
    Last edited by Steamer19; 03-16-2012 at 11:42 AM.

  25. #25
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    107
    Quote Originally Posted by Steamer19 View Post
    Great info here. Thanks to all of the submitters as I'm going to have to do this with the new SLX version I just installed on my bike.

    It would be good to hear more feedback on how far you push the pistons out. How much exposed piston do you end up seeing?
    Not too far...I used the picture in the instructions as a guide...I'd say between 1/8-1/4 inch.

  26. #26
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    525
    I did mine today. the brakes feel great (man do they stop!) but after the shortening I have rub in the front and rear that no adjustment of the caliper can fix. any ideas here?

  27. #27
    mtbr member
    Reputation: PerthMTB's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    598
    So the air can bleed out through the reservoir? Is there a one way valve or something to allow the air out , but not back into the reservoir?
    No, any air introduced during the shortening process gets forced into the reservoir as you push the pistons back in, where it stays, as its a sealed system. It's just that a small amount of air in the reservoir is not a problem, unlike if the air is in the master cylinder, calipers or hose. This is because the reservoir is just that, a store of oil, and is upstream of the master cylinder. The only issue is if the air in the reservoir somehow gets re-introduced into the 'working' side of the system, which can happen if you turn the bike upside down for example. For that reason it's a wise precaution to occasionally (and definitely if you know a large amount of air has gotten in) open the reservoir cover and fill with fresh oil to overflowing, which will displace any air in there. (Edit: Only do this with the pistons fully retracted, or you'll overfill the system.)

  28. #28
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    160
    I need to shorten as well. I have been trying to read as much as possible before I tackle it tho. Anyway, my LBS advised to pull the wheel/rotor out but leave the pads in and squeeze till the pads touch eachother. This will prevent the pistons from pushing out too far....and then follow the rest of the shortening steps. Any opinions...??
    The more you ride it, the lighter it gets.
    '12 Santa Cruz TallBoy
    '11 Vassago Bandersnatch
    '08 Specilaized Pitch Pro

  29. #29
    mtbr member
    Reputation: PerthMTB's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    598
    Anyway, my LBS advised to pull the wheel/rotor out but leave the pads in and squeeze till the pads touch eachother. This will prevent the pistons from pushing out too far....and then follow the rest of the shortening steps. Any opinions...??
    That's certainly one way of making sure you don't push the pistons out too far. However, it wouldn't be my preferred method for two reasons. First, have you thought about how are you going to get the pads separated and pistons retracted again? Secondly, I don't like to have my pads anywhere near when there's brake oil around - its just far too easy to accidentally contaminate them.

    So, my suggestion would be to use something 'brake pad sized' between the pistons, that is big enough to stop them coming out too far, can easily be slipped out when you want to press the pistons back in, and doesn't matter if it gets a bit of oil on it in the process. I use a plastic tyre lever, and its also good for pushing the pistons back in after, but anything the right size like a bit of folded card will do...

  30. #30
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,021
    I'm the type to never read instructions or follow them completely, but for this I sure did.
    Shortened my XTR 985 hoses and did not need to rebleed. Did not open reservoir afterward because the feel is perfect.
    Thanks to all who helped with the thread!!

  31. #31
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    19

    Brake rub post trimming.

    Quote Originally Posted by vortrex View Post
    I did mine today. the brakes feel great (man do they stop!) but after the shortening I have rub in the front and rear that no adjustment of the caliper can fix. any ideas here?
    I had a similar issue after shortening my front brake line. I bled them thinking that was the culprit. Nope, the pistons were still protruding from the caliper about 1/16" - 1/8" on each side and gently rubbing the rotor in a couple spots. I got the bright idea to push in on the pads while opening the bleed bolt on the brake lever reservoir just a bit. I heard a bit of pressure release and then retightened the bleed bolt. Pumped the break a couple times and now it's perfect. So far anyways. I did this last night so don't have a ride on it yet but it looks promising!
    ---------Wolfman82---------
    "Mtnwolf82" on Youtube

  32. #32
    29er
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    859
    yeah, the little bit of air that you push back into the levers creates too much pressure and doesn't allow the pistons to fully retract, after you push the pistons in, just crack the top 3mm allen bolt at the lever, and you will hear some air come out. this will let you set up the brakes without rubbing

  33. #33
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Solo Bellimino's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    116
    Just the kind of info I have been looking for.
    RM Trailhead
    Access XCL 9r

  34. #34
    29er
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    859
    shortened the brake lines the other day
    rode, and the brakes felt the same
    just for the heck of it, i decided to bleed the levers, using the shimano funnel
    lots of air came out of the levers.

    would be a good idea for you guys that shorten the lines to do the same, all it takes is for you to put the bike upside down once, and you can have air in the lines

    i did not bother to bleed the caliper

  35. #35
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    38
    Just did this, went really smoothly. Coming from Avid elixir R sl's these brakes are so much easier to work on and so much more powerful. Thanks for the tip of letting the air out afterwards, that really helped.

  36. #36
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    272
    Did anyone find a new olive necessary? I've got a set that does not have any of the mentioned parts due to them being used.

  37. #37
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    193
    Funny you ask. Yes, you will need a set for a hose trim. I JUST got a set. "Shimano BH96/BH63/BH62/59 Brake Hose Olive & Connecting Insert". Any of these part numbers will work. Also, if your shop uses Quality Bike Parts (QBP) to get parts, their part number is: BR0731.

    Retail is $3 each, order two as each bag comes with one brass barb and one brass olive compression sleeve.

    I'm home sick, so you ALSO get a picture.

    ______________________________

    "If it ain't moto, it's worthless"

  38. #38
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    39
    Can a barb and olive from another mfr, say avid or formula work on Shimano?

  39. #39
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Deep Thought's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    432
    Quote Originally Posted by nmanchin View Post
    Funny you ask. Yes, you will need a set for a hose trim. I JUST got a set. "Shimano BH96/BH63/BH62/59 Brake Hose Olive & Connecting Insert". Any of these part numbers will work. Also, if your shop uses Quality Bike Parts (QBP) to get parts, their part number is: BR0731.

    Retail is $3 each, order two as each bag comes with one brass barb and one brass olive compression sleeve.

    I'm home sick, so you ALSO get a picture.

    Make sure you get the right ones for your generation of brakes. The latest generation of XT (and XTR and SLX) brakes require a different barb. It's more of a gray/silver colored barb. The olives are the same though.

    Quote Originally Posted by jim-nc View Post
    Can a barb and olive from another mfr, say avid or formula work on Shimano?
    I wouldn't advise it. I believe different manufacturers have different tolerances.

  40. #40
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    1,173
    The barb kits are available on amazon and in many stores. I just replaced my elixir 5s with XTs and had to shorten the rear brake line. The only thing extra I had to do was open the reservoir cap because the pistons would not retract.

    During cutting etc I lost zero oil. I used a very small punch (1/16" or 1/32" not sure which size) in the center of the barb and a hammer to tap the punch to insert the barb in the brake line. My rear brakes came with a barb and olive.

    Took about 10 minutes to measure, remeasure, cut and install. Lightly clamped the hose in a vise to do the work. I have the park housing cutters but used an exacto knife based on recs here. After bleeding avid brakes, the shimano are way easier to bleed. I didnt think the avids were that hard, but the shimanos are 10X easier.

  41. #41
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Johnnydrz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    472
    So the proper barb and olive for the latest generation of Shimano SLX M675 would be the "Shimano BH90 Hose Olive & Connecting Insert" as in this?:
    Amazon.com: Shimano BH90 Hose Olive & Connecting Insert: Sports & Outdoors

  42. #42
    mtbr member
    Reputation: thasingletrackmastah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    387
    Quote Originally Posted by jim-nc View Post
    Can a barb and olive from another mfr, say avid or formula work on Shimano?
    Magura's olive and insert can be used instead of Shimano's.
    Also the used insert can be salvaged from the cut-off hose by heating it in a flame and extracting with plyers.
    The old olive cannot be used again.

    But it is always better to use new and original parts.
    Belgian beer and Scotch whisky.

  43. #43
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    30
    Just finished shortening my hoses per the instructions and took all of about 20 minutes to shorten both front and back. they both actually feel better than before. at least around the yard.

  44. #44
    wyrd bi ful rd
    Reputation: chinaman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    1,725
    Never thought ... there was a new 'barb' out there ...
    Name:  20130306 olive and barb 02 MTBR FORUM.jpg
Views: 4176
Size:  3.5 KB

    The golden one was what I have been using
    Name:  20130306 olive and barb 01 MTBR FORUM.jpg
Views: 4012
Size:  3.7 KB

    Guess it is dependant on the type of hose you are using ...

  45. #45
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    907
    I am replacing my Elixir 5 on my Giant Anthem X1 29'er and bought retail pre-bled front and rear brakes online (not quite shipped yet). I will need to shorten the hoses.

    Do I need a hose trim kit? Which one?
    My brakes are XT front and rear M785.

  46. #46
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    240
    Quote Originally Posted by morkys View Post
    Do I need a hose trim kit? Which one?
    My brakes are XT front and rear M785.
    I bought the pre-assembled, pre-bled XT brake kits back in January. At least one of them, I think it was the rear, came with an extra olive and barb insert to use if you need to shorten the line. I haven't shortened mine yet. They were within a couple of inches of ideal when they arrived.
    Justin
    Salt Lake City
    2012 Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Comp 29
    2006 Specialized Allez Expert Double

  47. #47
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    907
    Sounds good. I think my retail kit comes like that too, I just thought there may be more stuff needed. Perhaps not. The Oem kits I saw online were shorter than my front by over 7 cm and the rear had to be shortened either way, so I opted for the retail kit. I guess it's good I did.

    Quote Originally Posted by authalic View Post
    I bought the pre-assembled, pre-bled XT brake kits back in January. At least one of them, I think it was the rear, came with an extra olive and barb insert to use if you need to shorten the line. I haven't shortened mine yet. They were within a couple of inches of ideal when they arrived.

  48. #48
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    240
    Quote Originally Posted by morkys View Post
    Sounds good. I think my retail kit comes like that too, I just thought there may be more stuff needed. Perhaps not. The Oem kits I saw online were shorter than my front by over 7 cm and the rear had to be shortened either way, so I opted for the retail kit. I guess it's good I did.
    One of my kits was retail and the other was OEM. That might explain why I only got one extra barb and olive, and one of the yellow plastic blocks that you insert between the calipers when the pads are removed for bleeding. The OEM packaging must not include those parts. I read a few sites that mentioned a plastic hose clamp that you are supposed to use when you cut the brake line. I didn't get that. I did get two of the orange plastic spacers that go between the pads to prevent them from closing when the wheel is removed.
    Justin
    Salt Lake City
    2012 Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Comp 29
    2006 Specialized Allez Expert Double

  49. #49
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    981
    personally, all this jazz about removing brake pads and pushing calipers and opening reservoirs seems to be overkill. I did it according to the instructions in this video and it worked flawless. I will add that while I do plenty of my own wrenching, I come from a roadie background and didn't feel entirely comfortable doing my brand new 785 hydros. After seeing just how easy it looked in the video I said "screw it" lets do it.

    Super easy.

    Mechanic Mondays

  50. #50
    mtbr member
    Reputation: husonfirst's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    85
    If you're not bleeding the brakes, I see no need to remove the brake pads, although the process itself wasn't too difficult.

    I shortened my brake lines and must have messed somethng up because there was no pressure at the lever. I had to add new fluid into the system.

  51. #51
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    907
    Has anybody in this thread come across the issue of the hose leaking near the caliper?
    Last edited by morkys; 03-23-2013 at 12:57 PM.

  52. #52
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    981

    Re: Shortening Shimano XT hoses

    Quote Originally Posted by morkys View Post
    Has anybody in this thread come across the issue of the hose leaking near the caliper?
    No, didn't go near my caliper to shorten my hoses

    Sent from my DROID RAZR using Tapatalk 2

  53. #53
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    719
    I did this procedure on a set of SLX brakes a couple weeks ago and it worked like a charm. The bike has been sitting idle - my wife is supposed to be taking it out for its first ride on Friday. Last night I was looking it over and when I squeezed the rear brake lever it went straight to the handlebar. Repeatedly pumping the lever got the brake working again so that it feels like the front brake. So what's going on? There is obviously air somewhere in the system, but I don't understand this well enough to know where. Could it be air at the top of the hose and the air bubble got worked out into the reservoir, or is it somewhere in the caliper? The only thing I did with these was shorten the hose at the brake lever, so I don't see how there could be air down at the caliper. Thanks for any insight!

  54. #54
    El CicloPath!!!!!!!
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    247
    Quote Originally Posted by TurnerConvert View Post
    I did this procedure on a set of SLX brakes a couple weeks ago and it worked like a charm. The bike has been sitting idle - my wife is supposed to be taking it out for its first ride on Friday. Last night I was looking it over and when I squeezed the rear brake lever it went straight to the handlebar. Repeatedly pumping the lever got the brake working again so that it feels like the front brake. So what's going on? There is obviously air somewhere in the system, but I don't understand this well enough to know where. Could it be air at the top of the hose and the air bubble got worked out into the reservoir, or is it somewhere in the caliper? The only thing I did with these was shorten the hose at the brake lever, so I don't see how there could be air down at the caliper. Thanks for any insight!
    You should wipe everything down with OH, clean and dry. Rebleed the brake. If the problem is solved, then that's that. If there is a leak, you should check very carefully. The hose/lever junction, the banjo, the piston seals.

  55. #55
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    719
    Quote Originally Posted by Fachiro1 View Post
    You should wipe everything down with OH, clean and dry. Rebleed the brake. If the problem is solved, then that's that. If there is a leak, you should check very carefully. The hose/lever junction, the banjo, the piston seals.
    There's no sign that anything leaked so that makes me think the air is up in the reservoir for the master cylinder. Unfortunately I don't currently have a bleed kit - I was naively optimistic that I wouldn't need one. Anyone have any good links to instructions on bleeding Shimano brakes? And no, I haven't used the search function yet...

  56. #56
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    1,149
    Quote Originally Posted by TurnerConvert View Post
    Anyone have any good links to instructions on bleeding Shimano brakes?
    Shimano techdoc for bleeding XT M785

  57. #57
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    907
    Name:  XT caliper pistons out.jpg
Views: 2515
Size:  43.5 KB

    In the descriptions saying to pull the lever a few times so that the pistons are out about as much as the picture shows is kind of imprecise. Doesn't the amount the pistons stick out when you do this determine anything about piston and pad position once you are done? I wish they gave you a measurement or an amount. Like if you put the red spacer in without the pads, or two red spacers, or some sort of measurement.

    Anyhow, I will try it one way or the other. A friend recommended a black olfa blade instead of the cutters like in the Shimano guide. I am just getting the tools together to do this for my front and rear XT brakes not installed yet.

  58. #58
    mtbr member
    Reputation: BacDoc's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    613
    Some great info here, I read the tech docs and posts but still pretty confusing/complicated to someone coming off BB7. Just finished a build with these XT brakes and the hoses need to be shortened. Couple of questions:

    1.Can the lines be trimmed without bleeding or removing the pads(as described in the tech docs), since the bike is in a stand and the calipers are lower than the levers?

    2. If I have an issue what is necessary to bleed? Shimano tech doc Indicates the SM part with oil funnel and stopper. Does this include the tubing they show in diagrams?

    3. A syringe is needed too? How bout that plastic bag in the pics, use a regular sandwich bag?

    4. Looks like you always need oil and is the Shimano the best choice or will any mineral oil work?

    Sorry for all the questions but it's my first time with hydro maintenance.

  59. #59
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    907
    Quote Originally Posted by BacDoc View Post
    Some great info here, I read the tech docs and posts but still pretty confusing/complicated to someone coming off BB7. Just finished a build with these XT brakes and the hoses need to be shortened. Couple of questions:

    1.Can the lines be trimmed without bleeding or removing the pads(as described in the tech docs), since the bike is in a stand and the calipers are lower than the levers?

    2. If I have an issue what is necessary to bleed? Shimano tech doc Indicates the SM part with oil funnel and stopper. Does this include the tubing they show in diagrams?

    3. A syringe is needed too? How bout that plastic bag in the pics, use a regular sandwich bag?

    4. Looks like you always need oil and is the Shimano the best choice or will any mineral oil work?

    Sorry for all the questions but it's my first time with hydro maintenance.
    I can only comment on 1 and 4.

    1) Yes you can definitely trim the brakes without bleeding, many people here are doing it. Yes you can do it without doing the pad removal and piston movement, but it's good to try it Shimano's way. It's instructed that you do it that way in order to reduce the chance of any air getting in that may then require a bleed. I am doing it the Shimano way today. Will report back.

    4) Only use Shimano mineral oil. Shimano brakes are designed using Shimano mineral oil which is proprietary. Do not use any other mineral oil.

  60. #60
    mtbr member
    Reputation: eluv's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    130
    Dude this should be a sticky! My local bike shop wanted to charge $45 per side to shorten my brake cables. Spent less than an hour to shorten both cables and saved 90 bucks!

  61. #61
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    907
    I've been so busy this week. This is also replacement job too, as I'm upgrading my brakes and rotors, a complete install, not just shortening hoses.

    So far, I've only done the front. I messed it up the first time because I was rushed and also once done, I felt I hadn't quite cut it short enough anyhow. Second time was good. Being the first time I have installed these brakes, I am also aligning everything too at the same time. Front 180 mm Icetech rotor was a hair warped. Gentle bend at the right place with my hand and it's all good. Next comes the rear brake.

  62. #62
    100.oz minimum
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    66
    I just shortened my hoses on my new shimano deore brakes using these instructions & it was quite simple & easy. The only mistake that i made was that i should of loosened my master cylinder & turned it on the bars so when i diconnected the hose, the brake fluid wouldn't have dripped out. I also used a sharp exacto knife which made a perfect cut both times. I tried my cable cutters, just to see & they make a terribly burred cut. The brakes work great & the lever pull is just fine. No big deal to shorten the hoses. The only problem is the non-stop rain & I can't ride.
    -always thinking about the next ride-

  63. #63
    J-Flo
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    1,368
    Answer below.

    Quote Originally Posted by BacDoc View Post
    Some great info here, I read the tech docs and posts but still pretty confusing/complicated to someone coming off BB7. Just finished a build with these XT brakes and the hoses need to be shortened. Couple of questions:

    1.Can the lines be trimmed without bleeding or removing the pads(as described in the tech docs), since the bike is in a stand and the calipers are lower than the levers?

    2. If I have an issue what is necessary to bleed? Shimano tech doc Indicates the SM part with oil funnel and stopper. Does this include the tubing they show in diagrams?

    3. A syringe is needed too? How bout that plastic bag in the pics, use a regular sandwich bag?

    4. Looks like you always need oil and is the Shimano the best choice or will any mineral oil work?

    Sorry for all the questions but it's my first time with hydro maintenance.
    1. Yes. It is easy. If you do something wrong, though, then you will need a bleed.

    2-3. The funnel is necessary to prevent air from going back in to the reservoir (I learned this the hard way). Some mechanics have a good feel for how to do it without allowing air in, but the funnel makes it foolproof. You can use either a syringe (easiest) or the small Shimano squeeze bottle to push the fluid up, which is the most important step. Any ziploc/plastic baggie works.

    4. Yes, use Shimano oil. Supposedly some other types of oil may not agree with the rubber in the brake seals. I have been told that Tektro oil is the same, but am not sure.

  64. #64
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Vespasianus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    4,676
    Quote Originally Posted by Fremenrider View Post
    I just shortened my hoses on my new shimano deore brakes using these instructions & it was quite simple & easy. The only mistake that i made was that i should of loosened my master cylinder & turned it on the bars so when i diconnected the hose, the brake fluid wouldn't have dripped out. I also used a sharp exacto knife which made a perfect cut both times. I tried my cable cutters, just to see & they make a terribly burred cut. The brakes work great & the lever pull is just fine. No big deal to shorten the hoses. The only problem is the non-stop rain & I can't ride.
    I just did my new brakes and just like you, found it to be pretty easy. I should have read your post more closely as I tried to use cable cutters as well but had the same results! Otherwise, a super easy job.
    On MTBR, the reputation is infamous.

  65. #65
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Dirthugger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    311
    I did the same procedure but I used Cigar cutter to cut the line. Couldn't find my cutters.

  66. #66
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Vespasianus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    4,676
    Quote Originally Posted by Dirthugger View Post
    I did the same procedure but I used Cigar cutter to cut the line. Couldn't find my cutters.
    Now that is a great idea. Never even thought of that...
    On MTBR, the reputation is infamous.

  67. #67
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Posts
    9
    Hi guys,

    I have just bought some new XT 785s and I need to shorten the hoses. I just tried to do it, but once I'd unscrewed the connecting bolt the hose wouldn't come out, even after pulling reasonably hard.

    Am I just being too cautious? I don't want to break anything, I've already learned the hard way about using brute force!

    Also, would it make more sense to take the lever off the bar again so I can prevent oil coming out of the lever / reservoir?


    One last question: Is it good practice to regularly oil the pistons and clean them with a q-tip? My old brakes screwed up and I assume this was through lack of maintenance?


    Thanks for you help - This thread is really useful even though I haven't succeeded yet.

  68. #68
    Knob scrubber
    Reputation: Finksta's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    100
    This has to be one of the most useful threads I have come across. I just shortened the hoses on my new XT brakes using the instructions, which are ridiculously easy to follow. Took me less than an hour, and no bleeding required, brilliant!
    Real men do it in the dirt

  69. #69
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    146
    Do the 785 brakes feel a little stiff if the universal olive and barb are used instead of the BH90 one?

  70. #70
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    719
    I don't know how they feel with universal parts,but they feel pretty firm and powerful with the Shimano parts. My only knock on the Shimano brakes is that they don't have a whole lot of modulation - I still think they are pretty amazing though.

  71. #71
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    286
    I have done less on two sets of shimanos. Perfect both times. The shimanos may not be as flashy as formulas or as light as maguras but, for the money, I think they are just awesome.

  72. #72
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    132
    So amazing how easy that is to do as a task. Kudos to Shimano for making it rather simple. It's not like overhauling a Reverb. Follow the instructions to a T and it will go smoothly. I let out a little air from the reservoir and it feels the same as before.

  73. #73
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    335
    When shortening the hoses, do I need any spare parts, like the connecting rod and the olive?

    I have ordered some XTR 985 brakes and might need to shorten the hoses..

  74. #74
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    876

    Shortening Shimano XT hoses

    Quote Originally Posted by Devincicx View Post
    When shortening the hoses, do I need any spare parts, like the connecting rod and the olive?

    I have ordered some XTR 985 brakes and might need to shorten the hoses..
    You need the olive and the barb, which come w/ the kit unless buying OEM


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  75. #75
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    335
    my brakes will be pre-bled I think. I should order some olive and barb then and see if I can cut the hoses myself. Hopefully I will. Im not a skilled mechanic.

  76. #76
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    335
    I shortened my shimano XTR hoses.

    The front lever has a short throw and feel firm.

    The rear lever was much much softer and had a longer throw. I pumped it a couple times and now the throw is shorter and feels more firm, but it is not quite the same as the front lever, close, but no the same.

    Did I do something wrong? Should I bleed the rear brake?

  77. #77
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Seventh-777's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    233
    Bit of a bump here, but does anyone have a copy of the original document handy? Shimano's site throws a 404 when I try to hit the PDF link.

    Edit: Disregard, nabbed it from archive.org and attached it here in case anyone else needs it.

    Edit #2: Did this without touching the calipers, and didn't have to bleed. The whole process took about 10 minutes for both cables. Just measure about 12 times before you cut, and make sure you leave enough room for the bars to turn lock to lock cleanly.

    Didn't have to bleed or crack the reservoir - just a few pumps with the lever and they're perfect. Thanks for all the tips in this thread!
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Last edited by Seventh-777; 01-24-2014 at 09:25 AM.
    // '14 Giant Trance Advanced
    // '15 Rocky Mountain Sherpa
    // '17 Cannondale Scalpel-Si
    // '15 Specialized Fatboy

  78. #78
    mtbr member
    Reputation: bluebomberx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    168

    Shortening Shimano XT hoses

    Quote Originally Posted by Seventh-777 View Post
    Bit of a bump here, but does anyone have a copy of the original document handy? Shimano's site throws a 404 when I try to hit the PDF link.

    Edit: Disregard, nabbed it from archive.org and attached it here in case anyone else needs it.

    Edit #2: Did this without touching the calipers, and didn't have to bleed. The whole process took about 10 minutes for both cables. Just measure about 12 times before you cut, and make sure you leave enough room for the bars to turn lock to lock cleanly.

    Didn't have to bleed or crack the reservoir - just a few pumps with the lever and they're perfect. Thanks for all the tips in this thread!
    Thanks for posting that document! Installed a set of SLX on my wife's bike this afternoon.

    If anyone wants an alternative the shimano bleed kit, go to tractor supply company and buy a 49 syringe and 1/8" fuel line. Does the trick for a fraction of the cost.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  79. #79
    Workin for the weekend!
    Reputation: -Todd-'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    1,273
    Shortened both new XTR hoses, super easy and intuitive. I pulled the pads and pumped out the pistons a few times to fill the caliper with more fluid. A good idea, it made for a firm lever...
    Todd

  80. #80
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    466
    [QUOTE=bluebomberx;11004255]Thanks for posting that document! Installed a set of SLX on my wife's bike this afternoon.

    If anyone wants an alternative the shimano bleed kit, go to tractor supply company and buy a 49 syringe and 1/8" fuel line. Does the trick for a fraction of the cost.


    Were you able to thread into the caliper and master cylinder?

  81. #81
    mtbr member
    Reputation: bluebomberx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    168

    Shortening Shimano XT hoses

    Quote Originally Posted by Tree View Post
    Were you able to thread into the caliper and master cylinder?
    Not the master cylinder. They shimano funnel is only to catch the over flow. If you don't mind spilling some liquid gold, there is no need for it. I'll probably buy one for future use, but no need to spend they additional $20 on the syringe. The syringe only slides over bleed nipple. No threading involved.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  82. #82
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    3,355
    Quote Originally Posted by Seventh-777 View Post
    Bit of a bump here, but does anyone have a copy of the original document handy? Shimano's site throws a 404 when I try to hit the PDF link.

    Edit: Disregard, nabbed it from archive.org and attached it here in case anyone else needs it.

    Edit #2: Did this without touching the calipers, and didn't have to bleed. The whole process took about 10 minutes for both cables. Just measure about 12 times before you cut, and make sure you leave enough room for the bars to turn lock to lock cleanly.

    Didn't have to bleed or crack the reservoir - just a few pumps with the lever and they're perfect. Thanks for all the tips in this thread!
    Thanks for re-posting the document. Just what I needed.

  83. #83
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    3,355
    Worked like a charm, saving the pdf to my hard drive. I used an exacto knife to cut the hose and I think the cut was much smoother and event than when I have cut cables with cable cutters. I don't have a vice so I used Vice grips to clamp the yellow blocks and the hose and held it against something for resistance while hammering that insert into the hose. No leaks and no bleeding needed.

    On a related note, my ice tech rotor did not come with the fixing washer. I called Jenson and they said that Shimano no longer uses the fixing washer but they haven't update their instructions. They claim that a lot of customers have called them about it...

  84. #84
    Magically Delicious
    Reputation: Cleared2land's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    5,446
    Quote Originally Posted by cjsb View Post
    I don't have a vice so I used Vice grips to clamp the yellow blocks and the hose and held it against something for resistance while hammering that insert into the hose.
    I used the Vice Grip widget too and it worked like a charm.

    Shortening Shimano XT hoses-img_6094.jpg
    A bad day of cycling is better than a good day at work

    Work Truck - Dassault Falcon 7X

  85. #85
    Just A Mountain Biker.
    Reputation: blaklabl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    938

    Shortening Shimano XT hoses

    I did this today, thanks for all the tips. Simple simple simple. I wish all threads on here were this helpful!


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
    MTBR: Your dad's online mountain bike forum.



  86. #86
    bad reputation
    Reputation: turfnsurf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    357
    Quick question before I attempt this on my XT's...
    Does all of the fluid leak out the opening, when the hose is removed from the lever? Or is it similar to my Stealth Reverb post, with a ball valve type of assembly that closes when the contact is opened?

  87. #87
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    3,355
    Quote Originally Posted by turfnsurf View Post
    Quick question before I attempt this on my XT's...
    Does all of the fluid leak out the opening, when the hose is removed from the lever? Or is it similar to my Stealth Reverb post, with a ball valve type of assembly that closes when the contact is opened?
    I just did it last week on Deores and there was 2-3 drops of fluid after I disconnected the hose that dripped once I accidentally moved the lever. I don't know what kind of valve is in the lever, but fluid does not leak out.

  88. #88
    Magically Delicious
    Reputation: Cleared2land's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    5,446
    As cjsb stated, you will only get a few drops out. That is, assuming you DON'T pull the brake lever. Note that any fluid coming out is being displaced with air and it's this air that we bleed off after re-assembly. The more fluid loss, the more air introduced.
    A bad day of cycling is better than a good day at work

    Work Truck - Dassault Falcon 7X

  89. #89
    mtbr member
    Reputation: hankscorpio's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    1,102
    I also just did this with my deore's and there was no noticeable loss from the master but I was very careful not to bump it or touch the lever. I did bump the line which made a few drops come out but I'm hoping that didn't matter since it was before I cut the line.

  90. #90
    mtbr member
    Reputation: bluebomberx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    168

    Shortening Shimano XT hoses

    The reason you pump the pistons out before cutting the line is because your are forcing that fluid back in to the reservoir after the line is reattached. A drop or three if loss won't matter.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  91. #91
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    67

    Shortening Shimano XT hoses

    Shortened new XT brakes last night and couldn't believe how easy it was. Thanks to everyone for their additional comments to enhance the instructions. Excited to be done with Elixir 3 brakes... they were truly awful.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

  92. #92
    Magically Delicious
    Reputation: Cleared2land's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    5,446
    Quote Originally Posted by mn_biker View Post
    Shortened new XT brakes last night and couldn't believe how easy it was. Excited to be done with Elixir 3 brakes... they were truly awful.
    Welcome to the club!
    A bad day of cycling is better than a good day at work

    Work Truck - Dassault Falcon 7X

  93. #93
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Captain_America1976's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    2,136
    I am just looking to reroute my brake line through my frame. Will it leak fluid if I disconnect the line form the lever (step 3 in the PDF)?

  94. #94
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    3,355
    Quote Originally Posted by Captain_America1976 View Post
    I am just looking to reroute my brake line through my frame. Will it leak fluid if I disconnect the line form the lever (step 3 in the PDF)?
    When I did mine I had 2-3 drops come out well after I removed the line when I accidentally bumped the lever.

  95. #95
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Captain_America1976's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    2,136
    Quote Originally Posted by cjsb View Post
    When I did mine I had 2-3 drops come out well after I removed the line when I accidentally bumped the lever.
    So assuming I don't touch the lever I should be good? Either way I will wait until after I ride tomorrow to mess with it.

  96. #96
    Magically Delicious
    Reputation: Cleared2land's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    5,446
    Quote Originally Posted by Captain_America1976 View Post
    So assuming I don't touch the lever I should be good? Either way I will wait until after I ride tomorrow to mess with it.
    You're going to get some minor fluid loss through the open brake line, but that's to be expected. You might have to do a quick bottom up bleed, but if done by expanding brake pucks first, you should be fine without having to bleed. You can find that process here on MTBR. My assumption is that you're disconnecting the line from the master cylinder?
    A bad day of cycling is better than a good day at work

    Work Truck - Dassault Falcon 7X

  97. #97
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    3,355
    Quote Originally Posted by Captain_America1976 View Post
    So assuming I don't touch the lever I should be good? Either way I will wait until after I ride tomorrow to mess with it.
    just follow the instructions in that document and it should be fine.

  98. #98
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    981

    Re: Shortening Shimano XT hoses

    Quote Originally Posted by cpfitness View Post
    personally, all this jazz about removing brake pads and pushing calipers and opening reservoirs seems to be overkill. I did it according to the instructions in this video and it worked flawless. I will add that while I do plenty of my own wrenching, I come from a roadie background and didn't feel entirely comfortable doing my brand new 785 hydros. After seeing just how easy it looked in the video I said "screw it" lets do it.

    Super easy.

    Mechanic Mondays
    Revert back to my post from.a year ago and stop complicating things

    Sent from my XT1080 using Tapatalk

  99. #99
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    18
    Just finished trimming my slx hoses. Followed the pdf that seventh-777 posted. Worked like a charm! I did have to crack the front reservoir to let some air out. But the back one was fine and that was not needed.

  100. #100
    Rocks belong
    Reputation: 06HokieMTB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    4,292
    Just did my XT's tonight. The original link was bad and didn't see the updated link until now.

    For anyone wondering if you can do this... I did front & rear in a hotel room. No stand, no vise, no vise grips. With the calipers on the bike (pads out)

    Just some Allen wrenches, tire levers, small Channel Locks, Crescent wrench and a utility knife with a fresh blade (simply cut the hose while it was laid horizontal on a table).

    Still need to pop the reservoir cap on the front brake, it's really stiff/firm.

    Followed similar (same?) procedure.

    Shorten Shimano Brake Hoses without Bleeding | Epic Bleed Solutions

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Members who have read this thread: 16

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •