$200 Cdn bearing lesson

Well, I just spent $200 and approximately 8 hours of my time replacing my swing arm and pivot bearings.

I was told about 1/2 year ago to service them before they wear out due to a lack of quality grease. I though to myself, "no way, it's only 6 months old, the bearing will be good for years". Much to my dismay, the horrible squeek started and became annoying very quickly.

Tearing the bike apart was the easy part, putting it back together is another story. Not only did I have to pack all the bearings, I cleaned every nut and bolt on the wheel grinder, cleaned and packed the kicklever, footpegs, kickstand, clutch lever, and installed new rear pads. My pad rod had a groove in it that stopped the brakes from wearing evenly. It doesn't take much neglect to have things fall apart quickly.

Fair warning to all who have not checked there swing arm bearings, the factory does not do a good job, you must inspect and repack them yourself or it will cost you $200 Cdn.

Follow the instructions in the book and you will not have any problems.

repacking the bearings were that big a chore? :)

10 Bearings at 5 min a piece. You have to make sure to get quality grease in the needles. The come completely dry, so it takes a bit to pack it in. If you have stubby hands like me, then it's a little more difficult. If you saw what stock had, you wouldn't beleive it. Time to repack.


It's been beaten to death, but instead of 'packing it in', just take the waxy stuff out, clean out the empty races, put a thick bed of grease in the race, add the needles back in, top off with enough grease to cover. No packing, much more grease.

Good luck,


Every 6 months for the swing arm & every 12 months for the stearing.

Every 3 months for the kick starter & foot brake pivot

When you oil the chain also put some chain lube on the foot pegs & clutch leaver , front brake leaver.

I put grease nipples in my 98 WR400.

Just drilled between the bearings on each side of the swingarm.

One pump of grease after every couple of rides is all it needs.

Checked it after 2 years, and it was still like new.

Linkage bearings still need regular attention, but at least they are easy to get to.

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