Bearing woes...

I finally got around to pulling my steering stem bearings after only owning this bike for four months.

And much to my surprise... the :D lower bearing is already :D . :eek:

This thing was supposed to be put back together by tonight so I could go ride when I get back from work on Friday... but noooo... if it isn't one thing its another.

guess its time to check out my swingarm bearings as well :D

and while I'm at it, what grease does everybody use?

I'm looking for a good one to use instead of just winging it with whatever the local autoparts store has.

I've been usig the Yamaha waterproof grease, it's aluminum based. Seems pretty good.

I think everyone with a 650R has gone through this same issue with the steering heads. Honda puts very lil grease on these high stress areas. I use BelRay or Maxima water repellant/waterproof grease.

would it help to go to aftermarket bearing sets such as All Balls?

I've been fighting this lower bearing for three hours now trying to get the SOB off. Also been praying to the moto gods that the stem doesn't get gauled :D

The best way of removing the lower bearing requires that you press out the stem through the bottom of the the lower clamp.

First make note of how deep the stem in pressed into the lower clamp so you can put it back to the same spec. You'll need to get a steel tube or bushing with a large enough ID so the stem can pass through it. Place this bushing underneath the stem of the lower clamp (stem sticking up) on your press table. Then press the stem down and it will quickly fall through the bushing, so make sure you have something to catch it. You can now easily service or replace this bearing.

You must press the stem back in from the bottom clamp surface to the top. Place your bushing on your press table. Then place the lower clamp on top of the bushing (bottom of clamp facing up) so the stem hole is centered over the bushing hole. Slide the stem into the lower clamp and it should slide through the bushing. Press the remaining part of the stem into the lower clamp so it's depth is set to the exact spec you previously noted.

To install the bearinig, you'll need a tube or bushing that fits over the stem, but it needs to be small enough to contact the inner race of the bearing and not the outer cage of the bearing. Slide the bearing over the stem. Place the tube or bushing onto the press table and place the lower clamp onto bushing so the stem is facing down and going through your tube / bushing, which is pressed against the inner race of your bearing. When you press the lower clamp assembly down by pressing on the bottom of the stem, it will press the bearing back onto the stem. You only want to press enough so the bearing fully contacts the surface of the triple clamp.

It might sound like a lot of work from reading this, but it takes just seconds to do once you have the right size tubes or bushings and a press to work with.

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