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German rider
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Small report on the bearing exchange at my 16 Dark Horse with aluminum rim.

To change the Bearings the Rim must be on my operating table. The mat on it was so dirty that it cost me later some effort to clean the WhiteWall.[banghead]
The Wheel can not be removed without disassembling the Brake Calipers, and dismantling the Calipers is much easier when the Fender is off.
So, the Brake Caliper Covers off (Cap Nuts and the hidden 10mm inside the Fender).
For the Fender on each side the three Allen Head Bolts out.
Disconnect the Warbonnet behind the Head Lamp, cut off the Cable Ties along the Brake Hose.
Gently squeeze the Fender not to scratch its coating and pull them forwards and downwards between the Fork Struts.
After that the Calipers can be removed.
The bike still stable on the side stand, so that the Axle can be released.
For this, loosen the two tensioning Allen Head Bolts on the right Strut and then the Axle Shaft (14mm Allen Head).
Lift the bike in the middle under the Engine Assembley, just so that the Front Wheel still has contact with the ground.
Be aware that turning the Axle completely out, the loss of Wheel weight in front will let the bike wiggle a bit.

Who does not have a Bearing Puller, or must find out that his Puller is self-deforming china-crap, should dismantle at least one of the Brake Discs.
This will open the way into the hollow Rim, to push out the Bearing on the other side of the Rim with long Steel and Hammer from behind.
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01.jpg

You can find and order this as a set here in US, but in GER you have to search your wanted parts individually.
Some shops have either Bearings or Gaskets, this one has got both in stock.




02.jpg

Sealing Ring as dust protection, against wetness, the part has not held so well - as we will see on the second Bearing.




03.jpg

This Tire Tool is very handy for levering out the Shaft Seal, but a strong screwdriver would do it too.




04.jpg

What does the abbreviation C.H.I.N.A. ? But I have to say that the Bearings were both intact - the exchange was not necessary.




05.jpg

Dry but rusty, Bearing still ok, Sealing Ring of the Bearing it self also ok. But in the medium term, the change was then right.




06.jpg

A so-called Internal Puller for Ball Bearings - which unfortunately failed in this case and could be pulled through the inner Ring,
because the metal of the Puller was too soft, deformed at the edges then and the spreaders were bent away.
I had unnecessarily (initially) dismantled the Brake Discs, and tried for one and a half hours alternately with Spindle and Slide Hammer both Bearings to move.
Later without success but with lame arms, I wondered what the crap should be here, and why I do not just drive out the Bearings through the Rim.
So as I mentioned above, dismantling at least one of the Brake Discs will help.
Since the Bearings will be exchanged anyway, I drove the Bearing out with a long Steel through the Rim.
Be aware not to damage the Spacer Tube which is still clamped between the Bearings and will move away after the first punch detaches the Bearing.




07.jpg

So through the side of one of the six holes long through and on the other Bearing from behind twice "Ping" .... and out it was.
Removed the Spacer Tube and same game on the other side.




08.jpg

Look weird, but after 19,000 km (before hammering on them) they were still in good shape.




09.jpg

Drive in new Bearing in its seat.
I had heated the Rim inside with the adjustable Heat Gun (450 F max, not to stress the coating) and drive the Bearing in with a thick Nut.
For this drive / push / hammer the outer Ring of the Bearing ONLY!




10.jpg

Now you should slow down a bit, not to forget to put in the Spacer Tube again - bevore reassembling the second Bearing.




11.jpg

This small scheme in the picture may look funny, but you should already position the Spacer Tube accurate when the second Bearing is pushed in.
The Spacer Tube is sitting very tight between the two inner Rings of the allready seatened Bearings - even without tightened Axle.
Before the last few hammer strokes, just before the Bearings jam the Spacer Tube, I inserted the Axle as a guide for the spacer tube.




13.jpg

The Sealing Rings could be well positioned and pressed with the thumb and a little force.
The last millimeter has then again taken a big Nut (optionally the old sealing ring) and the Hammer.





Assembling like dissassembling backwards.
 

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Very nice write up. Thank You. I saved the link.
 

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Tell us why you felt you needed new bearings at 19,000 kms? Is that like 11,600 miles or something?
 

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I replace my wheel bearings every other time I replace tires, or about every 40,000 miles. Haven't found a failing bearing yet and I don't want to have one, so this seems like a reasonable interval to me.
 

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At about 19000 miles I went around a corner and heard an felt a big clunk from the front. Indian replaced under Warrantee but my bearing fell apart. It could have been serious.... is there a recommendation for bearing changes? In 55 years I ever had to fix a wheel bearing. But I also never changed front fork oil until the chieftain. I did it at 15000 but not at 30,000. Maybe at 45,000 or next new front tire I will do both!
 

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German rider
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Discussion Starter #8
Tell us why you felt you needed new bearings at 19,000 kms? Is that like 11,600 miles or something?
The bike has had a bad feeling which was getting worse over the time.
After accident rebuild there were light 'bssss' vibrations and later bad 'roubroubroub' grinding noise and feeling.
This was targeted to the front wheel.
Due the all new Metzeler 888 WW, I have not had it related to the tires.
After 3500 mls a nearby Tire Dealer checked it visualy and the balance too. Zero gr and nothing to see which was to bad for ride on this wheel.

So it MUST be the bearing.

After new Bearings, nothing changed.

At last I exchanged the Tire to Avon WW at the front.

The bike is like new now.
 
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