Turbo; If you swapped the harness with a non ABS one, wouldn't you also need a non ABS computer? I was also looking at the pinout for the ABS connector, and 2 of the pins said power for the wheel speed sensors. Does that mean if you unplugged the ABS, that the traction control would not work also? We need to figure this out. Mike.
It's a weird one as with the race ECU it's all different, I've yet to scour through the road going version's schematic. But if it comes down to needing a non ABS ECU and dash then so be it. Ugh, great fun that will be.
Got a stupid question but why would you want to remove the ABS?
No such thing as a stupid question. ABS (for better or worse) is here to stay and will be released on an ever increasing range of models by all manufactures.
The biggest issue, and especially with Kawasaki which already has woeful brakes to start off with is that firstly the standard master cylinder is not up to the job of really getting the most out of the equally woeful Tokico 2 piece calipers.
But what they have done by putting ABS on the bike is added about 2-3ft of tubing into an already under performing braking package. So before you even need to apply the brakes you're disadvantaged. So now when you squeeze the lever you are trying to pressure up a much larger hydraulic system. Without ABS even being activated you are losing efficiency in the system.
What makes it worse is that they use rubber lines from the master cylinder to a manifold block before it goes to metal tube to the ABS servo. Then back out vie metal tubes, before it goes back to a rubber line and to the calipers, form memory it also has 2 rubber sections on it's way to the servo and back out. The down side with rubber lines is that rather than transferring all the fluid force through them is that they allow them selves to expand under pressure, reducing how much force reaches the caliper and this is true even from brand new lines. This gets progressively worse the older the lines get as they degrade.
When it comes time to flush the system of fluid and replace with new... you have a far greater amount of fluid to flush through and care must be taken to ensure that it is done correctly as the greater the length of tubing and column of fluid the greater the chance that it will have some form of contaminant in it that you may not be aware of.
It all makes for a very inefficient system. Replacing the rubber sections with stainless will see an improvement, but the kits available to do only replace the rubber lines from the caliper to the first manifold so still leave rubber from the master cylinder to the first manifold and also two rubber sections in the run from/to the ABS module.
As for the function of ABS. If you have triggered the ABS... if the servo is spinning and the lever is pulsing and the slip/skid of the wheel is being controlled by the bike, it does not mean you are braking at the limit of the bikes ability and it most certainly does not mean you are braking and slowing down as quickly as the bike is capable of.
It means that you have messed up your braking, your technique for braking is incorrect/you've panicked/not taken into account road conditions.
The best braking performance most can ever hope to achieve is right on that knife edge of where the tyre is about to skid. The truly skillful brakers can have the front wheel rotating slower than the road speed below it, creating what I could best describe a pseudo skid, much like a compression lock up but with the front wheel using your bakes (but that's a whole different subject). This is threshold braking. A key point to threshold braking is getting the weight forward, the forks loaded and the tire loaded and deformed to get a greater contact patch on the road, more contact patch more grip... more grip the more you can get on the brakes.
Now, lets assume you've made a mess of your braking. You're riding along, you haven't been paying attention and there's a car in front of you. You've gone and given that lever a good old heave ho. Your front wheel has a tiny contact patch and the forks are at a neutral position.
In the old days a panic grab of the brakes would see you overwhelm that tiny front wheel contact patch, lock the front, tuck it and end up under the car. With ABS, ok, great it locks briefly, but regains grip, then locks, grips, lock grips... etc. Small instances of front wheel lock, while unnerving won't see you washing the front like previously.
Now here's the thing. For ABS to stop that wheel it needs to release the pressure off the caliper, to do so it needs to drop that pressure far more than what the threshold point would have been (anyone who has locked a front wheel with conventional brakes will know how much they need to release the lever to get it back), at this point the pilot is shitting bricks and is squeezing that lever as hard as he/she can. So now what's going on at the front of the bike? You started with a small tire contact patch, unloaded forks, unloaded tire. You've over whelmed it, locked it. ABS releases the brakes, contact tire patch stays small, forks and tire remain unloaded, you squeeze harder... immediately overwhelming the tire again... repeat. You now are making those little chirps with the front wheel that is so typical when ABS is being activated, your stopping distance is significantly greater. The whole time, not once do you get anywhere near the full capabilities of your bikes stopping power, you are now heading to your doom bolt upright towards a solid object.
You have three options with braking, lock the front and slide down the road or as many like to claim "I laid it down to avoid an accident", rely on ABS and plow into your hazard anyway, or learn to brake properly and not have an accident in the first place. I've seen riders make a mess of their braking, locking a front, and have the presence of mind to release then apply the brakes correctly.
Now going back to your original question, I remove the ABS for the all the reasons above, in addition to being able to put in braided brake lines, reduce the amount of pipe work, fluid, connections and room for faults. At the same time I also take the opportunity to beef up the master cylinder.
ABS on bikes is still in its infancy on bikes, the benefits of it on cars is huge, you can steer around your obstacles while panic braking (though most don't and still hit the hazard).