I had a pretty bad wipeout on my bike and it has taken me about 6 weeks to recover. My bike fared much better. The only notable damage was a brake lever blade that snapped in half. The brake still works and seems to have suffered no other damage.
The procedure for swapping out the blade wasn’t difficult and only takes a few minutes. Bleeding the brake afterward is a longer procedure and requires a bleed kit. This was my first attempt and servicing hydraulic brakes and I wouldn’t hesitate to do it again.
- Safety glasses (highly recommended)
- Hex keys
- Paper towels
I laid a board over a couple of sawhorses and leaned my bike up against it with the brake lever over the board. I put a paper towel on the board to catch any fluid that might drop. The paper towel did catch some fluid, but if I had made sure the reservoir top was level from the start, I may not have spilled any.
Below is a photo tutorial of the blade replacement process. Here are the steps:
- Remove the two screws that hold the reservoir cover in place.
- If the gasket stays in place I would leave it. Otherwise, place the cover and gasket on the clean paper towel.
- Use a magnet to slide out the larger pivot pin. The cam of the blade is still held between a smaller pivot pin and a spring loaded piston.
- Snap the blade out by pulling straight out while pivoting the blade toward the handlebar. This is where the brake is most likely to spit some fluid.
- Snap the new blade in between the small pivot pin and the piston.
- Slide the large pivot pin into place.
- Make sure everything is perfectly clean
- Carefully replace the gasket and the reservoir cap.
- Replace the cap screws, just tight enough to give some resistance. Don’t overdo it.
- Bleed the brakes. In the videos below, pay close attention to the orientation of the bike and handlebars. It makes a big difference.