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Brake pedal Squishy and needs to be pumped after bleeding.

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2001 VFR800 (no abs), 55,000mi


Hello friends, long time lurker, first time poster. I'd like to start by saying I know 100% this topic has been covered before, but I do not have the usual symptoms in the rear brake. I have a full dealers book and have followed the bleeding steps to a "T" and I have watched multiple videos as well as read multiple posts about bleeding the linked system.


We did the usual procedure following the steps for the fronts (lever) and had no issues. Fronts feel great.


We did the steps as follows for the rear (pedal):

  1. bleed right middle
  2. bleed left middle
  3. remove left front caliper and hold at an angle, use smc to bleed rear mc via pcv valve under tank
  4. bleed rear center
  5. bleed rear outer

Rears now have to be pumped before pressure is felt on pedal. 


I thought I must have miffed something so the next day, after reading several forums here and elsewhere, as well as rereading the dealers book and watching videos, I attempted it again. The second time I was much more thorough with the bleeding between the smc and pcv, and still the result is the same. The pedal is completely soft and will bottom out for 1-3 pumps, then will have pressure like it should. I hear a noise at the smc for the first couple pumps, which tells me that it is "building pressure" but it goes away within minutes. 


I do NOT have the rear brake lockup that most people write about. This tells me that the smc is good and the rear mc return is not clogged. 


Please let me know if there is something that I have overlooked, I'm at a loss here. I've worked on lots of brake systems before but nothing linked like this. I am unsure of what to look at next. 


I appreciate your time reading this. Thank you in advance,


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The process we used for the smc was to tilt it up 15-20deg and push the pedal down until it fully extends the smc, then open the nipple on the PCV while simultaneously still holdig the brake pedal down and depressing the smc, close the nipple on the pcv as soon as the smc is fully depressed and reset the system.


We did this 15ish times both days. The result has been the same. Each time we bled the complete sequence starting with the front right center nipple and working all the way back.

I must be missing air in the system, I just don't know how 😞

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