New wheel bearings too tight dragging
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New wheel bearings too tight dragging

This is a discussion on New wheel bearings too tight dragging within the Technical forums, part of the Caferacer.net Forums category; So I just got done installing new wheel bearings (All Balls Racing 25-1335 kit) into a Honda CL350K2 rear hub I picked up for this ...

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  1. #1
    Senior Member freedomgli's Avatar
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    New wheel bearings too tight dragging

    So I just got done installing new wheel bearings (All Balls Racing 25-1335 kit) into a Honda CL350K2 rear hub I picked up for this project. Unfortunately, the bearings seem to be dragging a bit now and I'm wondering if maybe I messed something up.

    Bearing Install Method
    I put the new bearings in the freezer for about 4 hours so they would shrink (probably should have left them in there longer) and then used the old bearings and/or a large impact socket to pound them in with a small sledgehammer and/or rubber mallet, doing my best to ensure the load was directed towards the outer race. (Sadly the HF hydraulic press in my shop sprung a leak and is out of commission at the moment). I first installed the 6303 brake side bearing until it was flush. Then I greased the inside of the hub and inserted the long spacer. Then I put the small spacer inside the 6304 sprocket side bearing and drove that home. It was impossible to tell exactly when the two spacers made contact inside the hub (per All Balls Racing Wheel_Bearing_Install.pdf instructions). Finally, I replaced the seal and inserted the bearing retainer until it was snug.

    Axle Install Method
    I first became concerned when it took more effort than I thought would be necessary to fit my original CB350K2 rear axle to the CL350K2 hub (the hubs are the same part number and use the same exact axle). I greased up the axle but it wouldn't slide in smoothly all the way. It seems it was getting hung up on the second bearing (sprocket side). It took several good whacks with the rubber mallet to get past the second wheel bearing (sprocket side). It seems there must be some misalignment or perhaps my rear axle is slightly bent.

    Diagnosis
    I'm concerned that perhaps I went too far in driving the second bearing in. Per All Balls, fully seating the second bearing may cause both bearings to become side loaded causing premature failure. Or perhaps I inflicted some damage by using a hammer and socket instead of a hydraulic press and a thin-walled bearing driver to ensure the force acted only on the outer race. Or perhaps one of the bearings is slightly cocked. Or perhaps the bearings lack sufficient lubrication. I read a lot of off-road guys remove the bearing seals and pack them full of grease as they come with only a thin coat of grease from the factory (supposedly Chevron SRI, mislabeled on All Balls advertising materials as SR1-2). Or perhaps my axle is slightly bent.

    Or perhaps the wheel bearings just have a normal amount of drag and I'm being paranoid. Spinning the rear hub by hand it barely turns one revolution before coming to a halt. For comparison, my front hub with new bearings installed exactly the same way will spin several revolutions before stopping and I didn't have any difficulty installing the front axle. I know this isn't the most scientific method but the discrepancy makes me wonder if everything is OK. By the way, these are bare hubs with no spokes or rims attached so they don't have much inertia to begin with but it still seems to me that there is excessive drag.

  2. #2
    Senior Member freedomgli's Avatar
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    A friend suggested I clamp the wheel hub up in the swingarm with the axle, brake plate, spacers, etc. and tighten to spec as this might be just enough to fix any slight misalignment issue. I'll order an extra set of wheel bearings just in case. Can't hurt to have spares....

  3. #3
    Senior Member hillsy's Avatar
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    The mis-alignment you are describing when putting the axle in would be the inner spacer being off centre. Not really a problem normally, but if you have driven the bearing races in "too far" the inner races / spacers will bind as you are experiencing.

    Are all the replacement bearings the same height / depth / thickness as the originals? If there are differences here you will experience problems with the spacers binding.

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    Senior Member crazypj's Avatar
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    Pretty common 'problem' you have bearing installed slightly too deep
    I do the 'fixed (drive side) first then the brake side.
    If it does end up with drag, heat bearing housing and it will move to where it wants to be (fit axle and extra spacers, don't fit brake plate, remove chain adjusters first or you'll crush them)
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  6. #5
    Senior Member freedomgli's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hillsy View Post
    Are all the replacement bearings the same height / depth / thickness as the originals? If there are differences here you will experience problems with the spacers binding.
    I didn't bother to measure to confirm, but yes, the bearings are labeled as being the correct replacement size but with the benefit of being double sealed, as opposed to being shielded only on one side like the originals.

    Quote Originally Posted by crazypj View Post
    Pretty common 'problem' you have bearing installed slightly too deep
    I do the 'fixed (drive side) first then the brake side.
    If it does end up with drag, heat bearing housing and it will move to where it wants to be (fit axle and extra spacers, don't fit brake plate, remove chain adjusters first or you'll crush them)
    I figured the brake side was the fixed side since the bearing race was exactly the same height as the hub recess. Similarly, I figured the sprocket side has variable height since the threaded bearing retainer can be tightened or loosened as necessary to accommodate the final bearing depth. Regardless, I think either the second bearing is too deep thus side loading the inner races and creating drag or one/both bearings are slightly cocked thus creating misalignment and drag. I'll try mounting the hub in the rear swingarm with the axle and spacers to clamp it tight. If need be I'll try to heat up the hub a bit to make it expand ever so slightly. If not, I suppose I'll punch the bearings out and try again with a new ones.

    Thanks everybody.

  7. #6
    Senior Member crazypj's Avatar
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    The lock ring ISN'T and adjuster, it should be tight and bearing should be fully bottomed.
    The brake side isn't fixed, it can 'float' as required (there isn't anything to prevent it moving on OD)
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  8. #7
    Senior Member freedomgli's Avatar
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    OK. I understand what you're saying. The sprocket side bearing should be fully bottomed out against the hub. Then the lockring should be installed and tigthened. Then the small spacer inserted into the sprocket side bearing, then the long center spacer inserted into the hub, then install the brake side spacer.

    Why all of this isn't spelled out in the Honda factory workshop manual beats me. They just say install the 6303Z and 6304Z bearing and install the lockring then the sprocket assembly, snap ring, etc.

  9. #8
    Senior Member 44dwarf's Avatar
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    Check your long center spacer. If the last set of bearings failed the spacer can get worn down thus end up to short.

    If you decide to replace just hit the local motion suppler / bearing house and ask for those bearing numbers with 2RS on the end 2RS = rubber seals x 2
    Get good name brand like SKF etc.
    Last edited by 44dwarf; 02-13-2013 at 11:15 AM.
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  10. #9
    Senior Member hillsy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 44dwarf View Post
    Check your long center spacer. If the last set of bearings failed the spacer can get worn down thus end up to short.
    I don't think that's possible unless the axle was loose. The axle clamps the bearing inner races and spacers together, so even if the bearing failed the spacer would still be tight between the inner races.

    Anyway, I think the problem was the other way round. IE: the spacer was tight inside the bearings, not loose.

  11. #10
    Senior Member crazypj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by freedomgli View Post
    OK. I understand what you're saying. The sprocket side bearing should be fully bottomed out against the hub. Then the lockring should be installed and tigthened. Then the small spacer inserted into the sprocket side bearing, then the long center spacer inserted into the hub, then install the brake side spacer.

    Why all of this isn't spelled out in the Honda factory workshop manual beats me. They just say install the 6303Z and 6304Z bearing and install the lockring then the sprocket assembly, snap ring, etc.
    That's even simpler to answer, the Honda book isn't for begginers (even though it keeps getting recommended by various people)
    It IS designed for factory trained mechanics
    I use the axle to keep everything lined up while fitting 'brake side' bearing
    Last edited by crazypj; 02-14-2013 at 12:05 AM.
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