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Author Topic: Should I replace the wheel bearings?  (Read 1043 times)

Lunchbag

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Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« on: May 29, 2013, 11:54:56 PM »
I have a 2005 Bullet 500 military with 3,600 miles.  I'm finally replacing the original tires with K70s.  While I wait for the tires to arrive, I'm wondering if I should replace the wheel bearings.  I have no reason at all to believe they are bad.  I'm just thinking if it is an advisable preventative measure or upgrade opportunity, this is a good time for it.  I have not ridden in much rain or other extreme conditions.  I'm sure they are the original bearings.  What would you do?

Arizoni

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2013, 12:18:34 AM »
I guess if it was easy for me to get some new bearings at a reasonable price I would replace them.

I'm not sure what your Bullet uses but I suspect it is the same 6203-C3 bearings my 2011 G5 uses.
I would get the sealed style from Grainger if the price was right and it looks like some are available for less than $10 ea.
I mention Grainger because they have a outlet where I live.

http://www.grainger.com/Grainger/wwg/search.shtml?searchQuery=6203&op=search&Ntt=6203&N=0&GlobalSearch=true&sst=subset
Jim
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ace.cafe

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2013, 12:27:42 AM »
Yes some good quality wheel bearings would be nice, and they don't cost much.
Closely inspect the bearing spacer that rides over the rear axle between the rear wheel bearings. That is commonly a wrong length, or is not faced-off straight, and it affects the alignment of the rear wheel bearings. We see this a lot.
Have a good look at all that stuff back there.
Home of the ACE Fireball 535 Bullet,  Ace GP Hi-Lift Roller Rocker Head Conversion. Pistons, cams, etc. Highest performance Bullet engine mods available anywhere.  AVL mods available. UCE kit coming.

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cafeman

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2013, 02:03:12 AM »
You might want to look for a bearing and seal distributor in your area. These places typically supply the local businesses such as manufacturing plants. Remove the bearings, and take the seals also and they can measure them and likely get you a quality replacement at a reasonable price. They can get most any size from el cheap-o up to the best, priced accordingly. I've gone this route many times for Triumphs, Husqvarna's (even the heavy duty crank bearings) etc when the usual m/c suppliers were always much more expensive for no better a part. Worth a look at least. ;)
« Last Edit: May 30, 2013, 02:05:32 AM by cafeman »

The Garbone

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2013, 02:39:32 PM »
I put sealed bearings in mine, purchased at Napa.  I forget the sizing.     On my 95'  it was quite an eye opener to see the old school non sealed bearing that came in the rear brake hub.
Gary
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Guaire

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2013, 06:14:57 PM »
Cafeman has the right idea. Bearings is bearings. I used to buy bearings in El Segundo, CA at 'Motion Industries' at a fraction of official motorcycle sources for my BSA. It's the same piece of machinery.

AgentX

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2013, 11:14:35 AM »
Anyone happen to have the bearing spec for our hubs?  (disc front especially?)

Am planning on getting some ceramic bearings for my rebuild, but would prefer to order the bearings in advance of knocking out the old ones...

ace.cafe

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2013, 11:35:20 AM »
Anyone happen to have the bearing spec for our hubs?  (disc front especially?)

Am planning on getting some ceramic bearings for my rebuild, but would prefer to order the bearings in advance of knocking out the old ones...

I don't know the disc front bearing number. It might be the same as the drum hub, but I don't know for sure. My parts book is old, and didn't include the disc brake hub parts.
The drum hub bearings are 6203, and we usually use shields only on one side(outer), because the inner parts of the bearings get sealed up when it's all bolted together.
Chumma has been really raving about his ceramic 6203 wheel bearings. He did the front and rear, and the bearing in the rear brake drum too. After seeing the results from them, he installed an expensive ceramic output shaft bearing in his 5-speed transmission. And he loves that too!
Home of the ACE Fireball 535 Bullet,  Ace GP Hi-Lift Roller Rocker Head Conversion. Pistons, cams, etc. Highest performance Bullet engine mods available anywhere.  AVL mods available. UCE kit coming.

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AgentX

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2013, 02:59:08 PM »
Thanks--I'll bounce the parts number off the hitchcock's schematics and see if it's the same for drum and disc.  And should see Chumma next week.


AgentX

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #9 on: June 08, 2013, 11:41:52 AM »
Picked one up at a shop for $2, to use in sizing a ceramic bearing. 

Wheel bearing for the disc brake hub is pn 150324/A.  Box label further says "wheel bearing 6203 (17x40x12)"

Bearing is stamped with C3 for radial clearance.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2013, 11:49:05 AM by AgentX »

Kevin Mahoney

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #10 on: June 08, 2013, 08:48:39 PM »
We sell all bearings for the RE's. 1-800-358-0938 I even think we still have some of the old open style although I am not sure why you might want one. Bearings are bearings except.......... you cannot imagine the trade in counterfeit bearings. I have seen Timkin counterfeits that look MUCH better than the real thing. When you buy bearings for anything except your wagon buy from a very reputable source. While not an endorsement I would trust NAPA with name brand bearings. I might not trust a big box store. If you look in the parts book, most bearings are listed with a universal bearing number. Ceramic bearings are cool, but a bit of overkill.

Lunchbag

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #11 on: June 11, 2013, 01:23:59 AM »
Thanks to all.  The verdict was to change the bearings, so I ordered 5 inexpensive bearings from VXB (4 for wheels plus 1 for brake hub).  I put the 3 rear bearings in along with my new K70 3.50 tire.  Reassembled all.

The test drive was fine, but afterwards I noticed the spindle had slid aft about 1 mm on the right side (right chain adjustment cam plate was no longer touching the post).  I figure this is because I did not tighten the castle nut enough before putting in the cotter pin.  It was not very tight when I took it off, and I don't know how tight it should be.  The workshop manual says, "Retighten the castle nut fully such that the split pin hole is aligned," but what does that mean?  Is there a rule of thumb or torque setting for the castle nut?

High On Octane

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #12 on: June 11, 2013, 01:27:49 AM »
Rear axle nuts I crank down as tight as I can with out giving myself a hernia.  Call me paranoid but I like it tight.

Scottie
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Lunchbag

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #13 on: June 11, 2013, 02:27:42 AM »
The nut which holds the sprocket/drum on (inboard of the castle nut) was extremely tight when I removed it so I tightened it accordingly during reassembly.  But the castle nut itself was not very tight at all when I removed it, so I was concerned about over-tightening when I put it back on.  Not a concern?

High On Octane

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Re: Should I replace the wheel bearings?
« Reply #14 on: June 11, 2013, 04:07:18 AM »
Don't go out of your way to break it and it will be fine.    ;)    I tighten it until I it's very snug and give a good extra jerk for good measure.

Scottie
Bulldog Kustoms - Denver, CO
Specializing In Kustom Paint

The Blackhawk
1958 Enfield/Indian 711cc Twin

Building the 1st EVER Supercharged RE Twin
FULL RACE motor with ACE Performance