Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  

Rear wheel bearings shot?

Recommended Posts

I took my rear wheel off for the first time to put on a new sprocket. While I was inspecting everything, I noticed that the wheel bearings don't seem to spin! I've ridden this bike a few hundred miles since I bought it a month or so ago, and I find it hard to believe that my wheel bearings are seized, and the wheel's just spinning by the grace of axel grease. I'm totally new to this, so please tell me I'm missing something.

WheelBearing.jpg

Is the thing in the pic supposed to spin? It doesn't. On either side.

Thanks for the help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dammit. That's what I thought. While I'm at it, I may as well check the swingarm bearings as per

http://www.thumpertalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=263748

and the front wheel bearings.

So are there any other things I should be checking that aren't listed in the service guide's maintenance chart? I got this bike (an 01 S) a month or two ago, and every other thing I've looked at has something wrong with it. Here's what the old front sprocket looked like, for instance.

2006-07-23-DeadSprocket.jpg

:thumbsup:

Thank god the engine runs fine. Knock on wood.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've never seen a front sprocket like that!!!!!

As for other stuff, I'd check all the bearings.. swingarm-linkage, wheels, headstock(this' a big one) and even the chain rollers.

Sounds like she was a bit neglected, so I'd change all the fluids(fork oil too), lube all the cables, check the tightness of every nut, bolt and screw you can get to and have a good look at everything rubber.

Anyone with a soul does this at least once a year.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, 10Guy and Squid. :thumbsup:

Given the level of care the rest of this bike's gotten, I sincerely doubt it's got the manual tensioner. I did some searching, but I didn't see any summary of the replacement operation. You guys have a Hall of Wisdom somewhere?

I'm definitely going to check the rest of the bearings and change the fluids this weekend. (As opposed to riding the f'ing thing like I'd planned to.)

:ride:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It is not unusual for the wheel bearings to not spin by hand. The axle spacer presses against the inside lip of the bearing. I have experienced the same and when you remove the bearing from the wheel then it spins freely. Question is, does the wheel have any side to side play? Typically I will replace the bearings every time I throw on a new tire...needed or not that way they are fresh.

I would grease the rear linkage and steering head bearings not knowing if they have been serviced?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lissen to obrianmcc. The bearing pre-load will change when the axle nut is tightened. If the wheel spins free and the bearigs are not loose or rough, it is fine. Service life depends on operating conitions. My DRZ is 6 years old, at least 20,000 miles and the original berings are perfect. If I remove them for any reason, I replace. But I do not remove unless they need replacement.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hmm. Glad to hear it. That's making me feel a bit more sane, since I really couldn't imagine that I was riding down the highway on totally shot bearings. The wheel rolled with minimal friction before I took it off.

It sounds like it's a good idea to replace them anyhow, but at least it may not be as urgent as I'd originally thought.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lissen to obrianmcc. The bearing pre-load will change when the axle nut is tightened. If the wheel spins free and the bearigs are not loose or rough, it is fine. Service life depends on operating conitions. My DRZ is 6 years old, at least 20,000 miles and the original berings are perfect. If I remove them for any reason, I replace. But I do not remove unless they need replacement.

Pre load or not......the bearings on a DRZ wheel.you should be able to rotate them by hand..

Nobel is right, you replace them as needed,not at a specific MI.... Mine were toast long before 20K,more like 2 years and 4K or so on that set of wheels. Fronts were tight and rough, real were loose with lost of side play. It's all about how you use um. Mine are repeatedly dropped from heights and made to catch a 300 pound weight, slammed sideways with that same weight. dipped in mud,sand,water at regular intervals. If there were just used to go down the street, and carry a bike along dirt roads.. they would last a lost longer.. But that is not how I ride.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Resurecting this old thread because I had a similar issue today. I had one bearing going south so I replaced it and after seating the bearings in the hub they were hard as heck to turn due to the side loading on them from the center spacer.

I suspected the center spacer was too long by a a few thousandths of an inch (which might have contributed to a bearing dieing at 7200 miles).

So I eased up the side pre-load just a touch by not quite fully seating the off-side bearing (but there was still contact with center spacer on both bearings) Things spun freely again. I installed the wheel and torqued the axle to spec and it still spins freely. After I take it out for a spin tomorrow I'm going to pull the wheel one more tiime to see how things feel.

Is the side pre-load really supposed to be so tight that you can't turn the bearings/spacer before installing the wheel?

I'm sure the inner spacer compresses some amount when the axle is torqued but I dunno by how much.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've found that with the rear wheel off the bike, if I try to spin the inner race of one of the wheel bearings, the race will not move.

But if I reach past the bearing and try moving the spacer, then I can feel the inner races of the bearings on both sides of the hub moving. Also, if I pick up the wheel with an index finger on both sides of the hub, the wheel will rotate and I can feel the bearings move that way.

With the bearings fully seated in the hub, when you try and move one of the races, you are really trying to move all three races plus the spacer.

This is what I wrote after replacing the rear wheel bearings a while back:

One thing I discovered after the job was done -- it's almost impossible to turn the inner race of just one of the outer bearings with your finger. When everything is back together, all three inner races and the spacer move as one. So to test to see if your bearings are moving OK, it works well to put your finger past the bearings, against the inside of the spacer, and see if the spacer moves freely. If you move the spacer, you can also feel the inner races moving. It won't spin, but it should move without any resistance.

http://www.thumpertalk.com/forum/showthread.php?p=4119417#post4119417

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not sure about the spacer being too long, but who knows...With all of the bikes I have owned I have only had one wheel at one time on an XR that the wheel bearings spun freely by hand. All other bikes or times the bearings would not spin by my hand alone......sometimes even when they do spin you can feel slight friction which can give a false sense of the bearing going bad. I tend to replace before the bearing actually goes south.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i dont know about your guys bikes but mine came new with very little grease on all the bearings, a quick fix but an important one IMO.

ive always checked wheel bearings by trying to wiggle the wheel side to side, if it moves, its smoked. just like that sprocket was, a long time ago.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good bearings will always spin with some effort. But there is a good deal of difference in the amount of effort it takes and a good deal of difference in what different people expect and/or report as stiff. The spacer is NOT too long. It is always longer than the distance between the hub shoulders. Only the right side bearing is seated to the shoulder. Both drive side bearings are positioned in the hub by the length of the spacer. They are not suppose to seat to the shoulder and the Suzuki service book even clearly shows that. (Odd but true, the book actually got something right) Newly installed bearings will spin more freely than ones after long service. Once installed and axle tightened, they shift around and settle in to a "normal" position. Then when the wheel is off, the bearings are not "normalized". So you evaluate when the wheel is on and tight. No play, spins free, no rumble - good to go.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Both drive side bearings are positioned in the hub by the length of the spacer. They are not suppose to seat to the shoulder and the Suzuki service book even clearly shows that. (Odd but true, the book actually got something right)

Ah, the value of having a manual Thanks for the heads up!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Reply with:

Sign in to follow this  

×