Lube Warning !

For those of you who have purchased pre-owned 400/426 and don't know exactly how the bearings have been maintained...Check your Bearings ! This also applies to folks like me who bought new and were told "Ah, there ok Yamaha lubes them up good and should last about a year before you need to tear it down". :)

I tore my WR down to the frame this weekend and did not like what I found. The front brarings looked like mabe someone might have sprayed some WD-40 on them when they were first installed. The rear was ok as I had serviced them a few months earlier, but the swing arm bearings were toast. some of the roller bearings had broken free of their position inside the rubber sleve's.

It took about 4 hours of labor to completely service all the bearings on my WR. Plus $200 in new tools, (2)22mm Wrenches(2)22mm Deep Well Sockets and 5lb-100lb Torque Wrench (All Craftsman...I know I could have gone to Joes Flea market and spent mabe $50. but I'm a stickler when it comes to good tools) At my local $75.00 per hour shop rate I still saved money and the tools have already paid for themselves. :D

The WR manual is good...start from the assembly process and work backward and the swing arm service is a breeze. The disassembly process documented in the book isn't very well documented.

I used marine grade lithium grease on all my bearings, because I tend to spend more time in the water for some reason and don't want to re-do my bearings after every trip.

Thanks to those who answered my questions this weekend. I am again ready to rock-n-roll for next weekend....Thanks

Bonzai... :D

My bike was dry as a bone too!!

What ever happened to quality control?

Does anyone take pride in their work/product any more....

Ditto Vince,

The more I read about the quality and defect problems with the WR's and YZ's, the more shocked I am at the lack of concern from Yamaha. I have read about the YZ tank cracks and the lack lubrication, clutch basket, and CDI issues and if they don't tighten the ship up, Honda may strip alot of our riders away.

One more vent point, has anyone tried to call their customer service line. I can't believe the treatment I get after I spend almost $6,000.00 for a bike from them.

I hope they read this message and heed the warning signs that I see.


Why worry about quality control. There is no warrentee. Thats how it works. Everything I read about buying a new bike all suggested redoing all the bearing out the door. It sucks but thats the way it is. More parts sales for them.



01 WR426 Uncorked.

I went through some problems with my Suzuki

tl1000s and complaining in a forum does not do any good! Call up Yamaha and bitch, then ask for the next person up the ladder and bitch some more! Write letters and bitch. Sometimes you get somewhere, sometimes you

don't. Remember to add-in that you belong to many chat forums where there are many thousand of members and visitors. Keep us informed of your progress!



Try going to a specialty business that sells

bearings. They can usually match with a higher quality part. Don't support Yamaha

if they don't support You!


Replaced my front OEM NON SEALED bearings w/ real ones (sealed). My front tire was screeching w/ about 20 hrs on the bike.


'99 WZ/YR (you choose!) with ALL YZ mods, de-octopused, DSP Doug Henry airbox w/ velocity stack, FMF PowerBomb header, Stroker SX-1 silencer, SS front brake line, OEM YZ tank, IMS YZ seat.

I am thinking of tearing mine down and regreasing but I wonder if you can replace them with sealed bearings. Has anyone tried this or is this even possible. How many bearings are there? two in the front two in the back and how many at the swing arm?

NH Kevin, How much did the fronts set you back? Mine look good but I'm thinking of puting in sealed while I've got it apart. Also my back bearings are sealed but look like they have been leaking. They feel smooth but I'm thinking of replacing them aswell. The swing arm is next this looks like a huge undertaking. Any advice anyone on the bearings at the swing arm? Disassemble or reassemble tips?

Jason The swingarm bearings are a snap if you goto this site and purchase the swingarm bearing tool.

The best advise I can give you is to goto the swingarm assembly section in your manual and work backwards. I can drop the entire arm including tire and brake removal now in ten minutes. You will need 2 22mm boxed end wrenches and 2 deep well 22mm sockets and 1 22mm standard length socket for the lower link. To remove and disassemble the swingarm. A torque wrench capable of torqing the swingarm connector to 61 lbs and the links to 58 lbs is mandatory as well as a small bottle of locktite. A 14mm socket for the lower shock bolt will also be required.

With the correct tools and manual you should be able to replace all the link bearings and the swingarm bearings in about 1.5 hours. Don't be surprised to find dry bearings (all of us have). If you spend alot of time crossing water hazards I strongly recommend a marine grade lithium grease so that you don't have to constantly tear down because of water.

Good Luck....

Bonzai... :)

Yamakaze, Thanks for the pointers, I'll make sure that I have all the tools you show and a good grease. I've never torn down a swing arm but I'm up to the challenge. I think it's going to be ugly, there is a lot of slop back there!!! Wish me luck. What about sealed bearings for the swing arm? This might be pretty pricey but might save some time in the long run.

thanks. JW


I looked for some but did not find any. I was told by one distributor that a sealed bearing would be so big because of the added race that the swingarm its self would have to be completely reworked. I can understand that.

I was a bit apprehensive at first as well. This is really Not a big deal. It looks to be complicated because of all the other stuff hanging off and around the arm... Actually the arm is off and on the floor with a six step process:

1. Remove the rear axle, and tire.

2. remove the chain guide from the left side of the swingarm (3 Bolts..8mm)

3. Remove the chain tensioner (Roller)from the left side of the sub frame.(12mm)(Must be removed for the step 6.)

4. Remove the shock bolt.(14mm)

5. Remove the lower connecting link bolt (22mm)

6. Remove the main swingarm bolt (22mm) and slide the swingarm out to the rear.

You now have access to all 4 connecting link bearings and the two swingarm bearings.

Reverse the process to install.

Happy Wrench Turning.... :)

Bonzai... :D

[This message has been edited by YAMAKAZE (edited 08-01-2001).]

As far as I know Yamaha has been doing this since "98". My YZ 400 had min. amount on it. When I just got my WR426 this year, someone told me to grease it up. They were rite!!!!


Again thanks Hick, if you remember? :)

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