Packing HF bearings

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Postby Nitetimes » Wed Aug 09, 2006 11:08 pm

Jiminsav wrote:good Lord have mercy,
do any of you people actually believe the grease your slinging in here..
word.
grease is a hydrocarbon thats solid at room temprature, but does liquify when heated, so thats what keeps the bearing lubed..not the giant blobs of grease.
saying that, as the grease used up by the bearing, new grease has to be there to replace it,
and it's almost impossible to over grease a axle


Believe what you like but after 15 years building and repairing trailers I've got a pretty good idea what works and what doesn't.
If the bearings in a trailer hub get warm enough to liquify the grease something is wrong, the grease will soften but it never liquifies. I have seen them with a hub full of old grease and dry bearings, that grease will never force it's way into the bearings it just lays in there. Bearings in an axle hub aren't going a zillion miles an hour, not really a good comparison.

asianflava wrote:
Another important factor is to not overtighten the hub.


Very true, more so than the amount of grease you have stuffed in there.
Rich


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What about solvents?

Postby coreyjhen » Tue Aug 15, 2006 10:31 am

I've always used brake cleaning solvent to clean out bearings and it works fine, but does anyone know of an effective wheel bearing grease solvent that doesn't stink?
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Re: What about solvents?

Postby madjack » Tue Aug 15, 2006 11:03 am

coreyjhen wrote:I've always used brake cleaning solvent to clean out bearings and it works fine, but does anyone know of an effective wheel bearing grease solvent that doesn't stink?


...being old school, I believe (right or wrong) that if it don't stink it ain't a'workin'...kinda like medicine...if it tastes good it can't be good :D ;)
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Postby asianflava » Tue Aug 15, 2006 1:21 pm

I've been told that some solvents (gas included) and solvents from a spray can can cool the bearings and allow moisture to condense on them before you put the grease on them. They were talking about turbine engine bearings which spin a lot faster than a trailer bearing.

I still use gas.
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Postby Joseph » Tue Aug 15, 2006 5:39 pm

asianflava wrote:I still use gas.

Same here. Only now I'm using a synthetic grease, so I may have to come up with something else. Any suggestions or will gas work on synthetics as well? Hopefully I won't have to find out for at least another year or two.

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Postby rasp » Tue Aug 15, 2006 7:08 pm

as long as you let the bearing dry before greasing, you should have no problems. though i would use something a little less volatile, like kerosene, diesel fuel or motor oil.
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Postby Nitetimes » Tue Aug 15, 2006 10:03 pm

I usually use laquer thinner, just try to avoid smoking while you're cleaning. It's quick and efficient. :thumbsup: :thumbsup: 8)
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Postby dahoon » Wed Aug 16, 2006 12:37 am

Here is my 2 cents for bearing buddies.

I purchased a 16' boat and trailer in 1979. I have yet to take the hubs off and repack or replace the bearings so far.
We have log 1000's of miles going from one end of the state to the other.
I put bearing buddies on it from the beginning. In the spring and in the fall I give them a few pumps of grease, just enough to move the spring loaded plunger. I stop before the plunger is extended all the way out. They have helped to keep the water out and the hubs are still tight and running cool.
I think so long as one doesn't over pressurize them they are a good thing. But, if they are pumped too full then yes there will be problems when the hydraulic pressure pushes the seal out.
I had an auto parts store in a resort community, and I just love selling brearings, seals, hubs and the occasional axle. Then I'd sell them bearing buddies.

Sorry to the old old timers but I'm sold on them.

Mike
25 years in auto parts
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Postby Nitetimes » Wed Aug 16, 2006 12:46 am

I usually throw them in the garbage after I replace the axle because the seal blowed out and the bearings were ground to a pulp and ruined the axle because they weren't used properly. They will work for someone who knows how to use them but those people are few and far between.
I wouldn't wish those things on someone I don't like. 8) 8)
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Postby coreyjhen » Wed Aug 16, 2006 8:07 am

...being old school, I believe (right or wrong) that if it don't stink it ain't a'workin'...kinda like medicine...if it tastes good it can't be good


Sort of like my granddaddy used to say... "A farting horse will never tire, a farting man's the man to hire."
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uh, how about the bearing by the rear seal?

Postby shetterly » Mon Sep 04, 2006 4:58 am

Howdy, y'all! This is my first post here. I've got a newbie question that I haven't seen in the forums (but I might've missed it).

I just put together a Harbor Freight trailer in a dusty barn, and I'm thinking I want to clean the hubs and pack the bearings with new grease. I've got a bearing packer and a grease gun loaded with marine trailer grease. But when I was looking at the hubs, I didn't see a way to remove the rear seal in order to clean and pack the inner bearings. Can I get that seal off without hurting anything? Or do I pack that bearing while it's inside the hub?

It really seems to me that I ought to be able to remove all the bearings to pack them properly. But I've broken more than a few things when I proceeded on what seemed like a reasonable assumption.

All advice will be gratefully received!

--Will
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Postby Dean in Eureka, CA » Mon Sep 04, 2006 5:11 am

Will,
Welcome to the forum! :thumbsup:
I'm not a HF user, but did a quick search for you and found this...
http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?t=3103&highlight=repack+hf
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Postby shetterly » Mon Sep 04, 2006 5:36 am

Dean, that's exactly what I needed to know. Thanks!
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