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REAR WHEEL BEARING REPLACEMENT: How-To w/Pics

Discussion in 'XJ DIY How-To Instructions' started by bigfitz52, Dec 28, 2011.

  1. bigfitz52

    bigfitz52 Well-Known Member

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    OK, there's a lot of information in this one, so READ CAREFULLY.

    If you have a 550, neither the factory nor the Clymer cover wheel bearing replacement with anything more than a casual mention.

    If you have a 650/750, the factory books are likewise vague, but the Haynes does a decent job.

    This article is intended to fill the gaps in the 550 manuals, as well as give the shaft-driven guys some additional tips and ideas.

    We're going to be replacing the rear wheel bearings in a 550 Seca; most of this applies directly to the chain driven (XJ550/600 and XS400) bikes. Let's start by getting our tools and parts together:

    [​IMG]

    A: "Aftermarket" bearing kit B: "Hi-Po" bearing kit C: OEM bearing kit D: Bearing Extractor tool set E: Various parts including new style Spacer Flange


    REAR WHEEL BEARING REMOVAL:

    We've got two ways to go with this: The old-school, knock 'em out with a long drift method,

    OR

    The use of a bearing extractor tool, which makes the job incredibly easy.

    I'm going to cover both.

    Let's have a look at what we're dealing with:

    [​IMG]

    PREPARE THE HUB: ***Note*** If you're working on a shaft-driven bike, see the recommendations in the "shaft-specific" info toward the end of this article.***

    We're going to start with the sprocket/hub seal and bearing.

    Remove the sprocket and "clutch hub" assembly by pulling it firmly out of the wheel, and place it on a protected, hard surface.

    Before we remove the bearing, we need to pop the dust seal out of our way:

    [​IMG]


    And then remove and recover the inner collar/spacer:

    [​IMG]


    With the seal out of the way, use a deepwell socket to tap the collar out:

    [​IMG]


    Be sure not to lose it:

    [​IMG]


    NOW IT'S TIME TO KNOCK SOME BEARINGS OUT!

    I'm going to start by covering the use of the Extractor Tools, as that method applies to all of the bearings. Then, I'll cover the specific pitfalls to doing it the old-school way.

    ***IMPORTANT NOTE*** All of the methods employed in this article assume that you are REPLACING your bearings. The removal methods used (both methods) are destructive and NOT conducive to the bearings being re-used; this is a replacement how-to.

    Here's the extractor tools set:

    [​IMG]


    It works like this: The drift wedges into the slot in the tool;

    [​IMG]


    When the tool is installed in a bearing and then the drift driven in, it spreads the "jaws" of the tool and engages and grips the bearing, allowing it to be driven out:

    [​IMG]


    In use, we insert the tool into the bearing we want to remove:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Then set our wheel (or hub assembly) down so that THE TOOL IS RESTING AGAINST THE HARD SURFACE

    [​IMG]


    Engage the tip of the drift with the slot in the tool, and give it a good whack or two to "set" the tool in the bearing:

    [​IMG]


    Then move the part so that there is room to clear the bearing (in my case, I simply open the jaws of my Workmate) and drive the bearing out. The tool grips the center race and the bearing will pop right out.

    Repeat for all of the bearings.


    REMOVING BEARINGS THE "OLD SCHOOL" WAY:

    (SEE "Preparing the hub" above.)

    With the dust seal and inner spacer/collar out of the way, we're going to use a hammer and a long drift to remove the bearings.

    When removing the bearing from the hub assembly, be careful to enagage only the lip of the bearing with your drift, and not damage the inner flange instead:

    [​IMG]


    Then working around the edge, carefully drive the bearing out:

    [​IMG]

    Be careful not to chew up the inside of the hub in the process. (Another advantage to the extractor tools.)


    Now let's get the bearings out of the wheel. This is a bit more challenging; there's a spacer tube trapped between them that's kind of in the way.

    That spacer tube is supported on its right hand side by a "spacer flange" which keeps it more or less centered on the bearing making axle installation easier/possible. So what we need to do is displace the left side of the tube. You can see the end of the tube here, butted up against the inside of the bearing.

    [​IMG]


    We need to shift the LEFT end of the tube enough to get at the LH bearing. Working from the right (brake) side, insert an appropriate bar just far enough to engage the tube but not the bearing, and "CRANK" on it:

    [​IMG]


    Enough to shift the left end of the tube over:

    [​IMG]


    So we can knock the LH bearing out:

    [​IMG]


    Exposing the evil (but very necessary) spacer tube:

    [​IMG]


    Which we are now going to use to pop the RH bearing out. Position your wheel so that there is clearance for the bearing to fall out below, and center a socket on the spacer tube:

    [​IMG]


    SMITE it mightily, one good whack will pop the bearing out the other side:

    [​IMG]


    Now we have all the bearings out; here's a look at the "pocket" behind the RH bearing that traps the original spacer flange. Note the shallow "land" cut below the bearing pocket:

    [​IMG]


    IMPORTANT PRE-ASSEMBLY NOTES in REGARD to the SPACER FLANGE.

    Here's the original spacer flange, installed on the tube:

    [​IMG]


    Here it is, in position, where it would be TRAPPED behind the RH bearing:

    [​IMG]


    THE SPACER TUBE WITH THE ORIGINAL FLANGE INSTALLED CANNOT BE INSERTED FROM THE LEFT; IT HAS TO BE INSTALLED FROM THE RIGHT, before the bearing!!!

    [​IMG]


    However, there is an easier solution. Since you may have damaged the original spacer flange during the removal process, there is a replacement available, Replacement on the left, original on the right:

    [​IMG]


    ***IMPORTANT*** The NEW, SMALLER flange needs to go further on the tube:

    [​IMG]

    So that it clears the "land" that is there to trap the original spacer. The advantage is that the new spacer flange allows the tube to be installed from either side, as long as the flange is located toward the right (brake) side.


    REASSEMBLY TIME:

    Let's start by reinstalling the inner collar/spacer in the sprocket bearing. Lightly lube it first:

    [​IMG]


    Be sure to support the bearing's inner race when tapping the collar into the new bearing:

    [​IMG]


    Then let's go ahead and install the bearing into the hub, use an appropriately-sized socket to install it:

    [​IMG]


    Be sure it's fully seated, to allow room for the seal:

    [​IMG]


    Start the seal into position (you can put a smear of silicone grease on the outside to make it easier:)

    [​IMG]


    Then install the seal:

    [​IMG]


    Note that the new seal sits 1mm deeper into the hub than the original. The original was an 8mm thick seal, ALL of the replacements, including from Yamaha are 7mm seals. (It really doesn't matter.)

    [​IMG]


    Then let's be sure all that pounding on the front hasn't displaced our inner spacer/collar (it shouldn't have, but double-check:)

    [​IMG]


    Now lube up the "lips" of the seal and the outer collar:

    [​IMG]


    Reinstall the collar in the dust seal, and set this whole assembly aside for now. (Be sure the small outer collar doesn't fall back out and get lost in the process.)

    [​IMG]


    NOW LET'S INSTALL THE BEARINGS IN THE WHEEL.

    REMEMBER IF YOU ARE USING THE ORIGINAL STYLE SPACER FLANGE, THE SPACER TUBE WITH FLANGE MUST BE INSTALLED BEFORE THE RH BEARING.

    If using the smaller, NEW STYLE spacer flange, it doesn't matter which side you install first.

    INSTALL tube with flange if using the original-style flange, and install the right-side (brake side) bearing:

    [​IMG]


    Then if not already in place, install the spacer tube, with the flange toward the right-hand (brake) side:

    [​IMG]


    If you're using a bearing set that doesn't have all sealed bearings, now's the time to pack the open-sided bearing with high-performance WB grease:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    And get it installed, open (greased) side IN.

    REASSEMBLY TIP: Slip the axle through from the other side, through the left bearing, the spacer tube and into the right bearing as you fully seat it, so that the spacer tube is trapped in a pre-aligned position. This will make reinstalling the axle much easier.

    [​IMG]

    (What you can't see is my assistant holding the axle up through the assembly from underneath.)


    Now lets' find that hub assembly we set aside a while back.

    Lube up the flange area, smear the rubber bumpers in the cush drive with silicone grease; and let's mash that whole thing back in place:

    [​IMG]


    And then put the bike back together!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    (Yes, I know the reference pics are of two different 550s; there are also pics in the article utilizing a spare wheel, from a 400 Maxim.)


    SHAFT DRIVEN BIKE-SPECIFIC INFO:

    As promised, here are the major differences, courtesy a couple of scans from the Haynes manual, with notations:

    [​IMG]

    From the looks of things, removing the large dust shield (4 screws, item #20) is a "must" whereas removing the splined section of the hub (#22) looks like it might be a good idea to prevent damage to the splines during the bearing removal and installation process.

    [​IMG]

    That pretty much wraps it up. Like I said, once I tear into my own shaftie in the next few months, I'll add some more pics and info about those bikes.

    As always; questions, comments, and suggestions are always welcome. If I need to clarify something or explain something in more detail, just say so.

    Parts, extractor tools and spiffy Hi-Po wheel bearing grease are all available from XJ4Ever.

    Enjoy--- Fitz
     
  2. wizard

    wizard Active Member

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    Top job, Fitz.
     
  3. schmuckaholic

    schmuckaholic Well-Known Member

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    Still chewing on the one for the front wheel on this end. You ended up using some of the same ideas I had... although I would have added a few cutesy arrows and such (I still can, actually...) :) Most notably, the concept of standing the wheel on the split collar and starting the drift rod so it grabs on the bearing, THEN standing the wheel up and driving it out.

    So the spacer can be shifted over to get at the inner race, you say? Hrm. I might need to add that tidbit.
     
  4. tskaz

    tskaz Active Member

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    Jolly good, Old Chap!
     
  5. bigfitz52

    bigfitz52 Well-Known Member

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    If you're not using the extractor tools, it has to be. Otherwise it blocks access to be able to get a good "purchase" on the opposite bearing with a drift. And you can only really shift it on the side away from the spacer flange (unless you get truly medieval and crush the spacer flange.)

    I must say, the extractor tools make it SO much easier and lots quicker. Plus they eliminate any chance of chewing up the inside of the wheels and hubs. Quite a neat invention.
     
  6. iwingameover

    iwingameover Active Member

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    I got something like this when I did mine. Worked great. If anyone near me needs to borrow it just let me know.
     
  7. schmuckaholic

    schmuckaholic Well-Known Member

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    Which is why I used the phrase "difficult if not impossible" in my working text. Got a nice through-hole shot and everything to show how hard it would be. Then I saw your mention of the spacer flange and thought it might be rear-wheel specific. Pulled up the parts fiche on the X and discovered that the front wheel spacer has that flange as well. The more you know...
     
  8. stokester

    stokester New Member

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    Great pics and instructions. Thanks.

    I've replaced the front bearings on my XJ650RJ and now it's time for the rear. As mentioned, the factory manual isn't much help and it looks like I will remove the drive hub to remove the bearings.

    But before I do... what is the torque specification for those bolts?

    Thanks,

    Nick
     
  9. stokester

    stokester New Member

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    I removed the drive hub last night, it appears some thread-lock was used. Is that why the bolts have a green coating on the heads?

    In addition to needing the torque spec, will Permatex Blue thread lock be sufficient?

    Thanks
     
  10. bigfitz52

    bigfitz52 Well-Known Member

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    Hi Nick; good questions.

    If you're talking about the 5 bolts that hold the spline hub to the wheel, NEITHER book has a torque spec for those bolts.

    I believe they're 10mm bolts; if so, use the "generic" torque spec of 22 ft/lb. (If they're M8's, then go 11 ft/lb.) I'm referring to bolt size, not head size.

    Blue thread-locker would be my choice, if they had compound on them to begin with.

    Don't you love how the factory book just says "rear wheel bearing replacement is similar to the procedure for the front" and that's IT? (and it's NOT.)
     
  11. stokester

    stokester New Member

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    You're right they are M10s which required the use of a small breaker bar to break loose. I attribute this to the use of a thread locking compound and I'll use the blue for reassembly.

    The service manual's instructions to do it like the front leaves a LOT to be desired. I'm unable to move the spacer tube to get a large enough surface for the brass drift punch so it's back to Len at XJ4Ever for the bearing removal kit. It's great having these pieces and parts at one location with great advice and quick shipping.

    Thanks much for the advice... just the rear wheel, fuse box replacement and fork oil to go before a road test.
     
  12. CapnRedbeard

    CapnRedbeard Member

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    Bearing extractor set looks great. They must stock them in UK somewhere. Not seen them before.

    When I think of the large screwdrivers i've mauled over the years trying to extract bearings..!

    Good write and photos though fitz.
     
  13. iwingameover

    iwingameover Active Member

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    http://www.harborfreight.com/blind-hole ... 95987.html

    I've got a set similar to this. Slide the collet in and tighten it behind the bearing. Couple pulls on the slide hammer and the bearing is in your hand. I brace the wheel under my feet.

    Stokester, if you were closer I'd offer it's use.
     
  14. worshipforever

    worshipforever Member

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    I noticed in some of your photos that you have the Avon Roadrider tire. I am considering these for my 1981 XJ 550 Seca.

    What size did you put on your bike? Both front and rear?
     
  15. boldstar

    boldstar Member

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    ace write up fitz and picture perfect p.s.that extractor tool looks the business. P.S the pics on the shafty i look forward to seeing many thanks
     
  16. boomerangg22

    boomerangg22 Member

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    This is a awesome how to on wheel bearings, thanks bigfritz.
     
  17. RusteeGold

    RusteeGold Active Member

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    Hi Guys,

    I'm trying to follow this DIY but I'm not able to see the pictures. I get this message saying something about "Please update your account to enable 3rd party hosting"... What should I do?

    Capture.PNG
     
  18. cgutz

    cgutz Well-Known Member

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    The original poster must now pay an annual fee to photobucket, so the problem is not on your end. No one can see them anymore. Many of these 'how twos' have lost the images.
     
  19. schmuckaholic

    schmuckaholic Well-Known Member

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  20. hogfiddles

    hogfiddles XJ-Wizard, Host-Central NY Carb Clinic Moderator Premium Member

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    Schmuck---

    I made a copy of your post and put it in a new heading as a sticky so people don't have to scroll al the way to the bottom of this one now-----
     

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