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Guest Message by DevFuse
 

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Wheel bearings: A Photo Essay


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30 replies to this topic

#1 Nug

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 08:35 PM

The howling up front was only getting louder, so it's time to swap some wheel bearings. I decided to take pics.

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Take the nut off. 36 mm or 1 7/16, ususally.

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Take the caliper off and suspend it with some coat hangers so no stress is put on the brake hose.

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Remove the rotor. This one basically fell off.

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Remove backing plate. One 12mm bolt.

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Take the cotter pin and 17mm castellated nut off, and bash the steering arm as shown with a hammer. It'll pop right out. Brass hammer good. It takes a lot to damage what you are wailing on.

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Told you so.

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Remove the bolt that secures the lower ball joint to the steering knuckle and pry it out.

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It's starting to come apart.

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Remove the two bolts that attach the strut to the steering knuckle and tap it right off of there.

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And it all hits the floor.

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Remove seal.

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Remove other seal. I had to use a chisel for this one. Note the lovely rusty notes in the grease.

Continued below.

#2 Nug

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 08:56 PM

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Slide the center spacer over a little.

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Run your punch down in there and pound it out.

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Greasy chunks stain the floor.

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What the hell kind of grease is this, anyway? Buy a parts washer, everyone. Seriously.

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I cleaned the grease out of the new bearings, and packed them with Valvoline Synthetic. By the way, these are the $8 Partsamerica.com bearings.

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Find something that contacts just the outer race of the new bearing and pound it in. You can use an old bearing or a piece of a 2x4 or something similar if nothing good is available. Just don't get a pile of crap mixed in there. By the way, if your grease has dirt or hair in it, try to stick it to the side of a mailbox on your way to the auto parts store for some fresh stuff.

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Make sure the inner spacer isn't forgotten!

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Add other bearing and seal.

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Just taaaaaap it in.

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Pull the knuckle back and slide the axle in.

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Pry the A-arm down and slip the ball joint in.

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Clean the crap off of the seal surface on the back of the disk.

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Add backing plate and disc. Around this point, I got a metal splinter, and my wife called me in for dinner. You guys can figure out the rest.

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A picture of the carnage on the way out of the door.

USRM anyone?

#3 Ross

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 09:15 PM

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but looks like you put the seal in backwards...

#4 Nug

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 09:27 PM

No, I didn't. They do look wildly different than the stock ones, though. The OEM ones are of a double lip design, and these are single lip.

Will they leak? Time will tell.

#5 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 04:25 AM

Ross is correct - the lip goes to the outside on all the ones I've done.

GD

#6 Nug

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 08:51 AM

Not only are you both wrong, but now I'm going to have to berate you both with an automotive textbook.

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See where the spring wraps around the sealing lip? This part faces the lubricant, like I have it installed. When the hub is installed, the seal rides on this surface. What you guys are seeing (or not seeing, more accurately,) is the lack of a dust lip on the seal installed.

Posted Image

This seal is a bit more like the original seal. The lip on the left faces out, just like on an OEM subaru application. The main sealing lip is on the right, this faces the lubricant. My cheap rump roast $4.99 Motor City lip seal does not have the dust lip, which is what everyone is looking for.


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Here's a cross section of the seal I'm using. The right side of the seal is facing the oil, as per the textbook.



Sorry for sounding butthurt, but i wrote this for people who might be confused about the process. I don't want them installing seals backward.

Everyone attempting to replace wheel seals, get OEM-style ones. They are literally impossible to install backward, and they are infinitely higher quality.

Why buy the cheap seals? The car is for sale, and it probably won't pass inspection ever again. Trying not to throw money away.

#7 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 12:17 PM

Ah - didn't realize you bought seals without the lip.

All the seals I've used (including Timken) have a dust lip (including you own dissasembly pictures). The OEM install in the FSM shows the dust lip facing outward from both seals. Perhaps you got seals without the lip, but I certainly wouldn't run without them - too much brake dust in that area.

GD

#8 PoorManzImpreza

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 12:30 PM

just one lil nit pick...WAY 2 much grease... :grin:

Kaz

#9 RelicGL

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 01:28 PM

Perfect timing for this '83 GL wagon new owner! Parts come in tomorrow and this photo-spread is EXACTLY what I needed for a procedure breakdown. Perfect time to slip in a new cv axle as well which is what I'm also doing.

If it stops raining today I can rip it apart and bring the old cv axle in when I pick up the new one and avoid a core charge.

The seal info is also perfect timing. I'll be sure to get the dust shield version.

I just hope my hub splines have survived....:eek:

I've been working almost every day and finally have two days off to do this job.

Soob mobile soon and this helps alot!!! :banana:

#10 TheSubaruJunkie

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 02:16 PM

One thing I would add...

When pounding the tie rod out of the steering knuckle. Re-install the castle nut upside down so you dont screw up the threads.

Not everyone has a brass hammer. And it doesnt "take a lot to damage what you are wailing on" I've damaged my tie rod ends before and it turns a 2hour wheel bearing job into a 6 hour 'run to the junkyard and get another tie rod and add $60 for an alignment afterwards' job.

Other than that. This is a great write-up! +1 for the USRM.

-Brian

#11 RelicGL

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 03:12 PM

I have a variety of hard rubber head mallets with wooden handles. One of them is pretty big. I start with the regular rubber hammer and if necessary pull out the bigger one when needed. Bought 'em used cheap at the local pawn shop. Apparently the previous owner of the hammer set installed stone floors or something like that.

#12 Nug

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 04:13 PM

One thing I would add...

When pounding the tie rod out of the steering knuckle. Re-install the castle nut upside down so you dont screw up the threads.

Not everyone has a brass hammer. And it doesnt "take a lot to damage what you are wailing on" I've damaged my tie rod ends before and it turns a 2hour wheel bearing job into a 6 hour 'run to the junkyard and get another tie rod and add $60 for an alignment afterwards' job.

Other than that. This is a great write-up! +1 for the USRM.

-Brian


That's why I didn't take a pic of the hammer on the threaded portion. That will waste the tie rod in record time. One solid blow, brass hammer or not at the area indicated, will pop the tie rod end right out.

#13 Nug

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 04:14 PM

Ah - didn't realize you bought seals without the lip.

All the seals I've used (including Timken) have a dust lip (including you own dissasembly pictures). The OEM install in the FSM shows the dust lip facing outward from both seals. Perhaps you got seals without the lip, but I certainly wouldn't run without them - too much brake dust in that area.

GD


Sorry for being harsh earlier.

If I was keeping the car, it would get proper seals.

#14 TheSubaruJunkie

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 04:16 PM

So if you recommend not hitting the threaded portion... what do you suggest you smack with the hammer?

-Brian

#15 Nug

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 04:20 PM

Exactly where the hammer is touching. One smart blow and the tie rod pops out. I swear this works. You don't need any special tools.


The only thing this doesnt really work on is large pickups and HMMWV's. The steering arms are so thick they absorb the blow.

#16 daeron

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 05:43 PM

Exactly where the hammer is touching. One smart blow and the tie rod pops out. I swear this works. You don't need any special tools.


The only thing this doesnt really work on is large pickups and HMMWV's. The steering arms are so thick they absorb the blow.


This is what my dad tries to tell me.. if you smack the SHTICK out of the SIDE of the boss in the steering knuckle (at right angle to the spline of the tie rod end, in a horizontal plane not a vertical) it is SUPPOSED to allow the ball joint/tie rod end to just pop out. I have NEVER had success with this, but I wan not born with a hammer in my hand, I was born with a Wrench. Thumbs get hit all the time doing carpentry, i cant hit a nail very good and at this point in my life, im just plain old afraid of the silly hammer, so I cant even get a good dead blow anymore.. Turning your thumbs into hamburger meat once or twice (or 3450985683 times) with a hammer will make you a little afraid. I just went to my local auto parts chain and picked up a super cheap picklefork; now I never have to worry about it again.

#17 Nug

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Posted 24 June 2007 - 06:20 PM

My problem with pickleforks is that they mangle the boots.

The ideal solution would be to have a tie-rod puller in each size they make. And that's too expensive.

I bought that brass hammer at one of those wandering tool shows for 2.99. Great investment.

#18 Scott F

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Posted 25 June 2007 - 09:19 AM

Nice write up. Does anyone know if these knuckles are cast iron or cast steel?

#19 WoodsWagon

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Posted 25 June 2007 - 09:45 AM

Nice write up. Does anyone know if these knuckles are cast iron or cast steel?


Judging by the way one of mine cracked last summer, cast iron.

Great write up, however this doesn't apply to any car in the rust belt. Upgrade to a 3lb sledge, use lots of penetrating oil. Heat both pinchbolts way up before attempting to remove. Ball joint may or may not come out of the spindle, you might have better luck getting the tapered part out of the control arm.

#20 Nug

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Posted 03 July 2007 - 06:38 AM

Nothing leaks, it's much quieter.

Good times.

#21 Petersubaru

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Posted 03 July 2007 - 07:32 AM

For those that are interested, for a little more money, the bearing company "NTN" makes a "sealed" bearing...further protection against dust etc.

#22 WoodsWagon

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Posted 03 July 2007 - 12:11 PM

Part #?

Seeing as my $100-a-side wheelbearings are getting loosish. Wyoming parts store prices suck.

#23 Petersubaru

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Posted 03 July 2007 - 06:40 PM

Part #?

Seeing as my $100-a-side wheelbearings are getting loosish. Wyoming parts store prices suck.

I can't help you to the same extent as myself because I purchased the bearings directly thru "canadian bearings"...you come in to there store with the sample or mearsurements and thus they have a bearing for you... (everything under the sun)... when looking at importecparts.com .. part # K8000-52105 .. $15 each .. sealed bearing..hope this helps

#24 baccaruda

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Posted 03 July 2007 - 08:41 PM

Nug, great write-up. People are only criticizing because they're jealous of your write-upification skillz. This especially was enjoyed:

By the way, if your grease has dirt or hair in it, try to stick it to the side of a mailbox on your way to the auto parts store for some fresh stuff.



#25 ShawnW

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Posted 03 July 2007 - 10:49 PM

Writeup looks perfect to me. Ive done a ton of these jobs and thats exactly how I have done it. I do now have access to a fancy tool that presses the bearings in/out of the car ON the car now so I do it that way but theres nothing wrong with this writeup...great for home mechanic.




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