About four or five years ago, I had a strange occurrence with my Cavalcade. As I recall, it had been sitting out the winter weather for a few weeks when I decided to take it out for a brief run.
When I wheeled it out of the garage, the front wheel seemed to drag. It was just not rolling as easily as I thought it should. I called a friend who is an experienced rider & works on motorcycles. ~ He suggested that the front wheel bearings may have stiffened and suggested that I ride it around the block to see if the problem got better.
In that I donít live on a ďblockĒ one can ride around, I decided to ride the half-mile down the road to the grocery store parking lot and then come back. To do this, there are three places one needs to come to a stop to check traffic before getting to the road which takes you to the store. Each time I came to a stop and started up again the problem got worse. By the time I got on the main road I knew it was getting too serious to continue riding.
I was looking for a wide place to pull over and get off the road, when the front wheel locked up completely and I went down like a sack of coal. ~ I stood up, rubbed the places that hurt and turned on the 4-way flashers.
Fortunately the first car that came along was a guy who knew motorcycle mechanics. He helped me get the bike upright again. He diagnosed the problem as a frozen front brake. We quickly got the Suzuki tool kit out of the saddlebag, and right there in the middle of the road, while his buddy waved the cars by us, he disconnected the brake line to the front calipers. That released the front wheel and allowed me to ride home again.
The service department at my Suzuki dealer cleaned out the master cylinder and the brake line to the front wheel and I have not had the problem since. My best guess is that somehow some dirt got in the master cylinder or the line and only allowed the pressure to increase on the brake and not release.
The lesson learned was 1. Donít take the bike onto the street or highway if there is any chance something may seize up.
2. If a wheel locks up itís almost certain to be a problem with the brakeís
hydraulics. Disconnecting the brake line should release it. 3. This is another reason why I like the fact that Suzuki did not use an
integrated brake system on the Cavalcade.