Adjustable brake levers - ATV Enthusiast Community

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Old 10-22-2007, 09:58 AM
Weekend Warrior
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 2
Default Adjustable brake levers

A few posts on here about the ridiculous reach on brake levers on Chinese made kids ATVs. Someone said that if your kid can't reach the levers the ATV is too big - - rubbish. I am 6'3" and have fitted adjustable levers on every one of my bikes and you won't find a professional racer without adjustable levers. These Chinese kids ATVs are fitted with levers that a lot of adults would struggle with. having a djustable levers with easy reach will mean that your kid maintains better hand contact on the handlebars and therefore better control of the ATV.
Here's the solution. 2 hours work and $15-$20 cost.

1. search on Ebay for Pit bike (or mini bike) adjustable CLUTCH lever (you need the clutch one as this is for a hydraulic master cylinder. Here's a pair, the right lever is the one you need. Just keep searching.

You want the ones with the tab that engages/disengages the safety starting microswitch. I got mine for $12 inc delivery.

2. When you get it, remove the ATV parking brake and original brake lever.

3. Compare the 2 levers, you will find that the tab is pointing the wrong way on the new lever. Because the adjustable one is made for a Clutch it is a right hand lever and therefore if put on the left side, the tab points upwards and it will not fit your brake master cylinder and microswitch.

4. Place the new lever in a vise with the tab pointing upwards and then carefully cut (with a good hacksaw) down the mating surface of the tab, removing it from the lever. Then, if required use a file to true up the 2 mating surfaces.
5. Then flip the tab, so that it will face downwards, refer to the original lever for correct look. Use a good metal bonding compound (JB weld etc) as these levers are generaly made of cast magnesium alloy so very difficult to weld, and bond the tab back on to match the original levers set-up.

5. Generally the bond may be strong enough, the tab is not weight bearing, nor will it's loss affect braking ability, however if it is not there it will mean that your ATV can be started without the brake applied - a very important safety feature.

6. To ensure strength of the tab, carfully drill through (from the tab end), through the tab and into the brake lever part (I used a 3mm drill and went in 15mm). Put some more 'JB Weld' into the hole and then screw in a self tapping screw (1/2mm bigger than the hole you drilled, 10 - 15mm long).

7. Leave overnight to set and then file all the excess 'JB weld' down and fit to your ATV (I sprayed the 'fix' black, to make a neater finish). Test the brake works and also test that you CANNOT start the ATV without the brake applied.

8. IMPORTANT - with this fix, you cannot refit the parking brake, I just use a small hook and loop strap around the handlebar/brake as a parking brake - only really used when I transport the ATV anyway - my kid is not really into parking on hills.

The above sounds difficult but just compare the adjustable CLUTCH lever and your brake lever and all will be obvious. It is only about 1-2 hours work and is a fantastic mod. My kid (6 year old) can now ride comfortably with 2 fingers always on the brake lever, scrubbing off speed when required and without having to do the panic grab of an oversized brake lever.

Also because of the way theses adjustables are made (designed for 2 finger braking) they have a huge double dogleg, thereby massively increasing the leverage. My kid can lock the back up with a steady squeeze. This fix has totally changed his ability to control the ATV, he now confidently accelerates, just scrubbing off speed into the approach to corners with a gentle 2 finger squeeze on the levers, whilst still maintaining a good grip on the bars.

When I get to grips with this site, I will try and post some pictures.
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