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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
We had taken a wrong turn and found ourselves on a gravel 'road' climbing ever higher through thick bush. Corrugations, mud, loose gravel & rocks made progress very slow. Eventually a rough (understatement) ute overtook us & stopped. The two 'bushmen' graciously asked our destination, "where the **%$#@@#** yer headin' mate? "Err, Opononi," we ventured. "Yer miles off the highway, mate, yer should be on the next ridge" he drawled while indicating a distant mini-mountain across the valley. "Go back down this %$#&*%^$** track & take the next on the right...don't turn left...only right, OK?"; "Want us to take yer picture", he mumbled, extending a huge paw that would be more at home picking up a tree trunk. "Yeah, thanks, mate" my buddy replied, having adopted the local dialect rather quickly.
The 4km 'slide' (that's what it was) back down the hill tested our slow riding techniques to the limit, especially over the bone-shattering corrugations at the head of each ravine. I used engine revs versus application of rear brake in an attempt to stabilise the bike & maintain some form of control over the tendency to head for the nearest low point which was invariably a watercourse at the 'road'side.
Eventually, we reached a track on the right which appeared going towards the ridge indicated by our "mates' in the ute. But my rear brake lever had no 'pressure', allowing the lever to come all the way to the handlebar! No Rear brakes! A quick check showed fluid in the reservoir; no evidence of leaks or broken brake line! Decided to proceed judiciously using front brake & manual transmission to slow the bike. When on the main sealed highway that didn't seem much of a problem - providing an emergency stop wasn't needed!
After about 15 minutes I cautiously tried the rear brake. To my amazement, pressure had come back - and continued to increase until it was back to normal. We completed our 1,000 km trip to the northernmost tip of New Zealand yesterday.
Can anyone suggest the reason the rear brake temporarily lost 'pressure'? Could the continued application/release of brake have overloaded or confused the ABS system?
 

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You turned the moisture in the fluid to vapour and thus lost the overall incompressibility of the working fluid.
 

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Was the grade steep enough to uncover the port in the rear master cylinder?
 

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Have that happen a few time with different bike, it sign of moisture in brake fluid and that fluid need change. Moisture not a friend in such case.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Many thanks for your quick replies, guys. Our son brought a Mityvac back to NZ on his last trip to the USA - time to use it, I guess!...
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Is bleeding an ABS system any different from a 'normal' system? The Manual is silent about ABS bleeding - or am I missing something?
 

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It bleeds the same way.
 
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