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Old 03-13-2013, 04:19 PM   #1
highmiler1929
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Default front wheel bearing adjustment ?

previous thread gave measurement of hub movement forward after nut was tighend . thanks for any help. highmiler 1929
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Old 03-13-2013, 05:26 PM   #2
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

Not sure of your question but remove bearing and inspect then repack if good or replace if bad To adjust tighten to tight then back off about 1/6 and reinsert cotter pin. That is how I do it not sure what spec calls for
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Old 03-13-2013, 11:09 PM   #3
BILL WILLIAMSON
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

We've been through this SO many times & some still stick to old incorrect ways! What happens to your toe in if you back it off 1/6 turn??? Might as well not even set the toe in!!! They must be preloaded some. Folks will argue HOW MUCH!!!! I, personally preload mine 10 Ft. Lbs. Bill W.
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Old 03-13-2013, 11:21 PM   #4
Jordan
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

i was just packing mine today and was curious about this. I got it finger tight and then took it with a wrench to the next notch. Is this too loose?
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Old 03-14-2013, 01:56 AM   #5
Tom Wesenberg
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

I would never have the front bearing tighter than what the weight of a 10" Cresent wrench could give it when setting at the 3 o'clock position.

I spint the wheel while I snug the nut, then back off and very lightly snug again to where thye cotter goes in. I'd rather be too loose than too tight on the nut. I've never had to replace a bad front wheel bearing doing it this way, and never had front end alignment problems. Another way to put the idea of tightness, is to use a pair of pliers sticking straight out (in line with the spindle) and snug the nut. NO TIGHTER than that and you'll be fine.
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Old 03-14-2013, 06:03 AM   #6
George Miller
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

Do mine mostly like Tom. Still using the wheel bearings that were in my coupe when I got it 12 years ago. The car had not been run since 1938. Probable the original bearings.
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Old 03-14-2013, 06:19 AM   #7
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

i am also similar to toms way. spin the wheel while working the nut back and forth and ending towards the clockwise position.
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Old 03-14-2013, 06:44 AM   #8
highmiler1929
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

as i recall, an engineer from a bearing co. gave this measurement in thousands. thanks for all replys .
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Old 03-14-2013, 07:04 AM   #9
Jim Johnston
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

Bill Williamson is correct. The bearings must have some preload to function. One method I have not seen here is to use the washer behind the nut to determine tightness. Tighten the nut until you can just move the washer with a screwdriver. I don't recall where I learned this, but I have used this method many years.
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Old 03-14-2013, 07:17 AM   #10
RonC
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

This is how Ford specified wheel bearing adjustment in the Jan and April 1928 Service Bulletins

Adjusting Front Wheel Bearing

If there is excessive play in the bearing it can be adjusted as follows: Remove wheel. Withdraw cotter key and tighten adjusting nut until the hub just starts to bind. Then back off the adjusting nut one or two notches until the hub can be freely revolved. Before replacing the wheel, be sure to insert cotter key in adjusting nut.


Important Information on Front Wheel Bearing Adjustment

1. See that front hub, inner and outer bearings are packed with grease.

2. Front hub grease retainer and lock washer should slide over threads on spindle body with fingers (loose fit).

3. Install nut, tighten same so that all component parts are pulled together snugly; that is, inner and outer bearings will be snug in cones, lock washer tight against roller bearing, and nut tight against lock washer. Grasp drum at top and bottom, apply side strain; see that bearings are tight in wheel hub with no side play. (A slight drag will be noticeable when drum is turned.) Not over eight or ten pounds' pressure is required on speed wrench to get these results.

4. Turn nut back two castle slots (this is approximately 1/4 turn of nut); insert cotter pin and try bearings for a slight side play and a free spinning wheel.
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Old 03-14-2013, 02:18 PM   #11
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

The method described above by Jim Johnson is exacly how I do it. This method is the best way to determine if you have it too set up too tight. That is too say, if you cannot move the washer then it's too tight. I learned this from years of working on Volkswagen Beetles and VW's own shop manuals actually describe this method.
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Old 03-14-2013, 02:28 PM   #12
BILL WILLIAMSON
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

Think of it this way, do ball bearings have a built in clearance?? When loose, you throw it away!!
Does anybody think about that wiggledy woggle thing at times, might be caused by loosey-goosey wheel bearing adjustment??? Some brake noises could be caused by loose bearing adjustment also! Bill W.
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:47 PM   #13
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

There are many methods of caressing front wheel bearings, just as there is for caressing a fine woman. I attended an industrial bearing class about thirty years ago. As I recall, first tighten the nut home by hand, then tighten it a bit more with a wrench while simultaneouly spinning the brake drum with your other hand. This will preload the bearing (preloading they said was important), keep spinning while tightening, when you feel the bearing starting to bind a little, you stop there, then back off the nut with a wrench untill you feel the tightness dissipate, find the closest cotter pin hole, and you're done.
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Last edited by Rock Hornbuckle; 03-14-2013 at 03:53 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 03-14-2013, 06:14 PM   #14
BILL WILLIAMSON
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

Not doin' this to prove how smart/knowledgeable I am. Learned a lot from other mechanics, some through trial & error, seeing failures from other's mistakes/poor workmanship. A lot of car repairs, diagnosing, etc, just requires some common sense reasoning. Like the full contact of wheel bearing rollers against the races to properly support car weight & side thrust, etc. FULL contact also helps the rollers in circulating the grease well.
A proper bearing pack with high temp disc brake grease, can easily go 30,000 miles, with maybe 1 or 2 quick re-adjustments at maybe 10,000 & 20,000 miles. Slick W.
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Old 03-14-2013, 08:01 PM   #15
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

My $.02 is that I do it pretty much like everyone else. Tighten her down with a wrench, back it off, then retighten with just my fingers. My wheels don't wobble and my bearing don't burn up.
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Old 03-14-2013, 09:47 PM   #16
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

A rocky mountain front brake drum had a broken hub at the national meet a couple years ago. The outer bearing race split and broke out that portion of the hub from being too tight. I took a picture, but can't find it right now.

If you want to use a torque wrench and preload the front bearing, be sure it's an INCH pound torque wrench and stop at 5 to 15 inch pounds.
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Old 03-14-2013, 10:14 PM   #17
BILL WILLIAMSON
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Wesenberg View Post
A rocky mountain front brake drum had a broken hub at the national meet a couple years ago. The outer bearing race split and broke out that portion of the hub from being too tight. I took a picture, but can't find it right now.

If you want to use a torque wrench and preload the front bearing, be sure it's an INCH pound torque wrench and stop at 5 to 15 inch pounds.
But was it really too tight, Tom, or maybe NO repacking for 11 years or maybe cheep grease, or maybe some oooold tired bearings were used??? If proper preloading caused burn outs, modern cars would be droppin' like FLYS on the roadways! Example: Earlier Volvo manuals specified, 60FT LBS while turning the wheel, and back off 1/6 of a turn, or 1 castellation. I never remember what the final torque was equal to. Jaguar specified 120 INCH LBS, while turning the wheel & leave it there! Without the proper specs for a particular car, I tighten them 60 INCH LBS (5 FT LBS) while turning the wheel. I don't just "TALK THROUGH MY HAT" as I've been doin' this crap for EONS, seems like. Took a long time to learn things that WORK & things that DON'T WORK! Bill W.
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Old 03-14-2013, 10:25 PM   #18
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

No, it was too tight. I also loosened the VERY TIGHT right side before it broke.
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Old 03-14-2013, 10:50 PM   #19
BILL WILLIAMSON
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Wesenberg View Post
No, it was too tight. I also loosened the VERY TIGHT right side before it broke.
OH! sorry, Tom, maybe I'd just better be QUIET!
Buster T. just said, "If you stayed quiet, you'd "BLOW UP"! (Smart alec Dog! He'll sleep in the floor tonight) Bill W.
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Old 08-12-2017, 05:33 PM   #20
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Default Re: front wheel bearing adjustment ?

This was the method I was taught for VW Bug, Bus and Type IIIs also as I remember ...





Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Johnston View Post
Bill Williamson is correct. The bearings must have some preload to function. One method I have not seen here is to use the washer behind the nut to determine tightness. Tighten the nut until you can just move the washer with a screwdriver. I don't recall where I learned this, but I have used this method many years.
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