Rear Wheel Bearing Fail

Discussion in 'Softail Models' started by gleason1, Aug 25, 2011.

  1. gleason1

    gleason1 Member

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    Just an update on what I originally thought was a clutch bearing failure on my stock 08 Cross Bones with 17k miles.....

    Upon beginning to remove the sprocket side rear wheel bearing, I discovered that there was no gap between the inside edge of the bearings and the 5 3/4" wheel spacer !

    Realizing that I could not properly grip the bearing itself for removal, (catching the expanding edge of my puller onto the inside edge of the bearing) I had to expand it onto the wheel spacer itself and pull against it !
    Was very difficult, but I got it out. Then the other bearing was a breeze because then there was room to grab it with the puller.
    Upon removing the bad bearing, the inside ball /cage assembly was dissintegrated and came out in pieces.....the seal completely gone, no signs that it even ever existed. (must have been ground to dust.)
    What a cheap, design. And why is the spacer butted up against both bearings when there are hub shoulders for both bearings ? Of course I am cutting 1/4 " off of the spacer before I put it back in the hub. Sheesh......
    BTW, I got repacement bearings from Grainger , their part number is 6L027. (American made SKF.) I paid $11.00 each.
    Fear the stock sealed wheel bearings people.......

    ===============================================

    Ok,
    just read a post that mentioned that the spacer needs to be the length it is inorder to "support" the inner races when tightening the axle, so I will NOT trim off 1/4" from the spacer.
    Still.......what a poor design.

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    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 25, 2011
  2. Breeze3at

    Breeze3at Well-Known Member

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    The spacer is there to prevent side load on the bearing. If you cut it,the axle spacers will push the center of the bearing in, causing it to fail even sooner.
    We posted at the same time. I see you found the reason.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2011
  3. gleason1

    gleason1 Member

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    Actually, the axle spacers push against the entire bearing circumference and not just the center race. I now wonder if the spacer really needs to be the length it is ?
     
  4. R_W_B

    R_W_B Senior Member

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    Thanks for this update. So I surmise the spacer you speak of is 'between' the two bearings. Does the wheel housing have a 'stop' for the bearing to stop at when pressed in ?

    I am wondering what method HD and most folks use to remove the first bearing?
     
  5. Hoople

    Hoople Account Removed

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    Are you sure about that? The spacer should only be slightly thicker (1/4") than the axle and keeps the two inner racers apart. Don't cut the spacer. If you do, the new bearings will last only 50 miles.

    A blind hole bearing puller. There is a very slight camfer on the inner race of the bearing that allows you to just grab it by the sharp edge of the puller. Some pullers have a sharper knife edge and work better than others.
     
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  6. R_W_B

    R_W_B Senior Member

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    Ah yes Master. I'm savin this. My next Mod for future mad money is new cast wheels.
     
  7. Hoople

    Hoople Account Removed

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    I am WAY far from being a Master. I have only owned a Harley for two years so I don't know a whole lot. But learning something new all the time.
     
  8. R_W_B

    R_W_B Senior Member

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    WRONG ! in ADDITION to being the MASTER, you are also modest.

    Maybe you've only owned a Harley for two yrs but like my Dad used to say,

    Some learn faster, some learn slower. :bigsmiley24:

    You are a fast learner and very helpful to others.

    Course my Dad also used to say,

    Sadly some never learn. :cheers I loved my Dad more than I can express. He is passed on now, but one of the smartest folks I ever knew, especially to be such a hard person sometimes (but fair).
     
  9. gleason1

    gleason1 Member

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    Hoople, I was referring to the multiple axle spacers......when you tighten the axle nut, you are putting the squeeze on a long spacer on the outside of left side of the hub, and also on a shorter one on the right. These are the same diameter as the bearings. And yes, the hub has stops for both bearings.
     
  10. R_W_B

    R_W_B Senior Member

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    Thanks for the update. If it has stops, it's 'possible' you could cut the inner spacer, but possibly the stops don't give that much support area, is what Breeze was talkin bout. This thread has been educational for me though cause ain't got into this area (yet).