Swingarm Bearing Cleaning

A few questions on the swingarm bearing cleaning thing.

Anyways, regarding the swingarm and associated shock linkages:

#1. when cleaning the needle bearings, take out the oil seals? leave em in? If you take em out, is there a trick, or do you replace with new every time you clean/lube the bearings?

#2. Lets pretend the above answer was "take em out - destroy em" and I now have a swingarm full of needle bearings and grease. Ive heard pro's and cons about using just about every kind of solvent known to man on aluminum. What do you guys use to clean out the old grease? It appears that carb/choke cleaner is the way to go, but any alternatives?

#3. Repacking - any problems with synthetic hi-temp grease w/moly?

Sorry if these are redundant, I searched but didn't find anything *too* specific, so apologies if this info exists elsewhere.



brake cleaner, dosent hurt the aluminum, dosent destroy plastic and rubber (carb cleaner does)evaporates quickly and without residue, and is cheap. At the H-D shop that I work at whenever we do anything dealing with gasket replacement and the incidental oil getting all over the engine in the process we pour brake cleaner all over the engine to remove all the oil film and see if the job was done corectly. just my .02 cents



Agree with Ronin, It is really not necessary to remove the seals when cleaning and reapplying molly to the needle bearings. You just need to be very careful as to how much pressure you hit the bearings with when using either the Brake Parts Cleaner or Carb Cleaner. If you don't you'll have needle bearings everywhere.

Season #1/2 I just cleaned and serviced my swing arm and link bearings They were in good shape. This season I went ahead and pressed in all new bearings...(There was still nothing wrong with them other than a little discoloration of the bearing holder...but I figured why chance it.) This year I will also change out my wheel bearings...even though they too are still in good shape.

I have gotton my money's worth out of my bearings. I would like to think it's because I lube my wheel bearings atleast every two months with good molly grease, and I lube the swing arm bearings atleast twice a year (Only takes a couple of hours....I do it on a rain out weekend to keep me from going stir crazy).

Hope this helps....


Bonzai :)

[ March 26, 2002: Message edited by: YAMAKAZE ]

Hahah...well the overkill bug strikes again!! :D I knew I was taking it a step too far when I showed up @ the parts counter telling them what i needed and they got that confused look on their faces. I think it was followed with the phrase "cleaning it? and you need how many seals?.. :) ". Guess I should have asked first before becoming so dang ambitious in these cold times.

I appreciate the info very much, thanks!!!

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