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Discussion Starter #1
well it almost is. i have the drum brake front and rear. am thinking about changing the front fork to a disk setup, anyone done that? course it would be nice just to go to a new style tw fork setup but to import it here would cost more than the bike is worth.
so with that, who knows what? any advice appreciated. bike is an 87, all stock.
 

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well it almost is. i have the drum brake front and rear. am thinking about changing the front fork to a disk setup, anyone done that? course it would be nice just to go to a new style tw fork setup but to import it here would cost more than the bike is worth.
so with that, who knows what? any advice appreciated. bike is an 87, all stock.
It's possible that you can get a slightly longer brake actuating lever to help increase pressure on the shoes !

Number 23 in this pic https://www.yamahapartshouse.com/oemparts/a/yam/50042a48f8700209bc789468/front-wheel

Someone will be along shortly with more help
 

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I've had a TW with a drum front and now have one with a disc. To me they're not very different unless maybe you got the drum wet. Not having fluid or a line to worry about is nice as well. Some folks say the EBC shoes are an improvement, others say stick with stock. First make sure your cable and shoes aren't worn out of adjustment. That may be all it is. If there's a longer arm for the front that's great, but I've only heard of one for the rear.
 

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Cleanliness is next to Stopliness.
Get it very clean & keep it that way.

Lightly sand the inside of the drum & shoes.
Remove any glazing.

Try EBC HH shoes.

Take a triangle file and file diagonal groves about 3/16" deep in the shoes, an inch or so apart. (Or buy pre-grooved shoes.)
This will keep the water & muck out.

If your cable is old & wonky, get a new one.

Get a grip exerciser and develop a Popeye forearm.
Eat your spinach.
 

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Clean drum brakes make a huge difference at least on my back wheel. I had some silt get in them from mud puddles and after taking it apart and thoroughly cleaning huge diff.

My front disk brake makes me nervous sometimes that it will lock up and drop me like it did when I had the death wing judo master tire on it. I barely put any pressure on it the little bit of time I use it. Unless you want to do stoppies/endos, or ride through muddy/waters the drum brake should be adequate if taken care of.
 

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Both types of brakes, disc and drum, have their advantages and disadvantages, and both will let you down when wet. As Trail Woman suggests, correctly maintained, the drum version won’t face plant you on the trail, but equally, the disc will stop you faster on tarmac. Depends on what kind of roads you’re on at the end of the day

Stamping on the rear brake can often have a decent effect, as can a degree of anticipation and using engine braking (which is quite dramatic on the TW). Depends where your head is. Get it wrong, and both types are equally as capable of dumping you off the bike. Unlike a road machine, the “secret” lies in the rear, not in the front

Otherwise, the TW would come with a twin disc set-up at the front, but I’m guessing you can see why Yamaha hasn’t gone for that option. Once you get your head around that, drum or disc makes little difference …..
 

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Discussion Starter #7
sounds like i need to do a mechanical check of what i have already. noone has complained about the brake like i do so maybe i need an adjustment.
for the record, the brake lever feels spongy, like the cable is streching. so i will replace cable and check adjustments. thanks to all
 

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Perhaps before placing any order inspect a bit more to see what else to get. Pull the front axle and wheel so you can see if brake shoes need replacing or can be simply cleaned. Drum may be scored enough to warrant turning. Doesn't hurt to always inspect, clean and lube a bit.
Post pictures of anything questionable or that is simply entertaining ( Some carb issues turn out to be simply air boxes used as mice pantries for seeds and grain).
 

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well it almost is. i have the drum brake front and rear. am thinking about changing the front fork to a disk setup, anyone done that? course it would be nice just to go to a new style tw fork setup but to import it here would cost more than the bike is worth.
so with that, who knows what? any advice appreciated. bike is an 87, all stock.
A couple weeks ago I had the same problem and found that sanding the drum made the most difference. It had gotten really glazed and needed to be freshened up. Eventually, I also changed the brake cable and pads, but I recommend a good sanding for a quick fix.
 

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Use oem shoes.I know others swear by ebc. I'm sure they have success with them. I did not. Oem shoes at least offered resistance for me. I'm not new to riding. I rode when drum brakes were the only option. So if I'm unknowlegable about drum brakes. I've been unknowlegable for years
 

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+1 on breaking the glaze on the drum . I cut pieces of #80 from my DA disc .

Confirm that the wheel bearings are in good nick too .

I had to re-bend my lever as it was "straightened "out . This allowed longer travel at the lever .
 
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