Trailer Bearings/Hubs

Discussion in 'Boat Repair Help' started by 1stpalindrone, Mar 15, 2006.

  1. 1stpalindrone

    1stpalindrone New Member

    Messages:
    84
    State:
    Denton, Texas
    Ok, I just bought a boat from the boss thats been in the warehouse about 7 years. Hasent seen road much less h20 in that long either.

    I want to make sure it'll make it to the house (about 45 miles in Dallas traffic). I know I should check the bearings and races and repack if not replace but my question is: When putting back together what is the redneck rule of thumb? i.e., torque, etc. Thanks for all your help.
    Lucas:confused:
     
  2. Matt Smith

    Matt Smith New Member

    Messages:
    119
    State:
    Tennessee
    Spin the spindle nut as tight as your hands are able. If you can insert the cotter pin, then now's the time. If you can't insert the cotter pin, back the nut off until you can. Torquing the spindle nut down will cause the bearing to fail at the worst possible time.
     

  3. kspor

    kspor New Member

    Messages:
    716
    State:
    Wichita Kansas
    I would tear it all down and replace all seals, both inner and outer if applicable. Also some bearing buddies would be a great addition. Take the advice and dont torque the nut. Also pack that bearing really good. If you dont have a bearing packer then the palm of your hand works great. I use nitrite gloves so clean up is easier. Get a good dolup in your palm and pull/drag the bearing through it against the palm untill the bearings are really full. I do this for about 2-3 revolutions to try to eliminate air pockets. Use a good grade of grease that is marine rated.

    If you use bearing buddies they will assist positive grease/metal contact. Inspect your seals regularly and do not pump in grease till it comes out. When you feel tension stop.

    I try never to put a trailer in the water untill the hubs have a bit to cool. Hot hubs and cold water = water in hubs.

    ps use new cotter keys. a few cents saved is not worth your trailer tire passing you on the hiway.
     
  4. duxsrus

    duxsrus New Member

    Messages:
    1,014
    State:
    SW Ohio
    All of this is some real good advise here. Also, never mix two different brands of grease. When I'm ready to do a full breakdown I'll buy the seals (and bearings if needed) and about 5 or 6 tubes of grease. So when it is time to add, flush or whatever I have more of the identical grease that currently in there.
    Like was mentioned above, if using bearing buddies, don't go pumping them full until you can't get any more grease in there. You'll blow out the rear seal. After I've repacked them, I'll check them periodically and put in a couple of pumps until the disc with the grease fitting on it just begins to move. You will eventually get them full without damaging the rear seal that way.
     
  5. Cattracker16

    Cattracker16 New Member

    Messages:
    356
    State:
    Wilton Iowa
    Another thing i would do is to pack the bearings then put the hub on and then spin the hub tighten the nut til the hub has a little bit of resistance then apply the cotter pin through the castle nut, check the hub after 50 miles or so, just give it a shake if it wobbles you'll have to tighten it up again.. the bearing buddies are a must.. and by all means see about getting a spare tire for the trailer too..
     
  6. 1stpalindrone

    1stpalindrone New Member

    Messages:
    84
    State:
    Denton, Texas
    Thanks for all your help/tips. Payday was yesterday so I'll get the stuff I need this evening and tackle it during the rains this weekend here in Tejas. Definatley going with the bearing buds, havent heard anything bad about them and they came on my bass rig too... Thanks again, Lucas:cool:
     
  7. Hannibal Mike

    Hannibal Mike New Member

    Messages:
    1,454
    State:
    Hannibal, MO
    Thanks so much for all the tips. I was just getting ready to do my first bearing repack. How long would you let bearing cool before entering the water? I'm usually hot to go and there is not a line most of the time? What is a bearing buddy? Do I get it at auto zone or where? Thanks so much. Hannibal Mike
     
  8. TDawgNOk

    TDawgNOk Gathering Monitor (Instigator)

    Messages:
    3,365
    State:
    Tulsa, Oklahoma
    Where can I get new dust covers for my hubs?

    Right now I'm usin redneck engeneering. Thats right, ziplocks and duct tape.
     
  9. 1stpalindrone

    1stpalindrone New Member

    Messages:
    84
    State:
    Denton, Texas
    I've seen the bearing buddies at several local/national parts houses. Under 25$ I think.

    TDawg- what do you mean, ziplocks for dustcovers, why??:confused:

    Lucas
     
  10. waterwalker

    waterwalker New Member

    Messages:
    604
    State:
    Louisville Ohio
    I agree that bearing buddys are the only way to go, I use them on both of
    my boat trailers. The design keeps a positive pressure at seals that keeps
    water out. Just don't put to much grease in because the inner seal can be
    ruined.
     
  11. Matt Smith

    Matt Smith New Member

    Messages:
    119
    State:
    Tennessee
    You shouldn't have to "let it cool". The hub should only be warm to the touch, and should never get hotter. If it does, then something is wrong. Anyhow, if you'd still prefer to let the bearings cool, I'd think that the amount of time you spend getting the boat ready would be more than sufficient.
     
  12. Bubbakat

    Bubbakat New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    McMinnvill
    This is how champion trailer says to do it.

    : HUB OR HUB DRUM PACKING AND INSTALLATION PROCEDURE
    FOR A STANDARD (NON SPINDLE-LUBE AXLE)

    When installing bearings in a hub or hub drum for a "plain" spindle axle, it is necessary to prepack the bearings prior to installing them in the hub. To prepack your bearings, you can buy a bearing packer at your local auto parts store, or you can pre-grease your bearings using the grease in the palm method.
    The standard bearing packing tool contains two convex shaped plates attached to a threaded rod with a grease zerk fitting on the end of the threaded rod. With the bearings in place in the packing tool, you pump grease into the zerk fitting forcing grease through the rollers of the bearing. This bearing is now ready for installation into the hub.


    If you do not have a bearing packing tool, you can achieve the same results with the *grease in palm * method. Although a messy process, it is equally effective if done properly and carefully. As the name infers, you put grease in the palm of one hand and then with the other hand, you methodically roll and rotate the bearing into the grease, carefully forcing grease through all rollers. Once you have prepacked both the inner and outer bearings, carefully lay them on a totally clean surface. Dirt in the greased bearing will act as an abrasive on the bearings and races and can drastically shorten bearing life.

    Next lay the hub or hub drum face down on a table and fill the rear of the hub cavity with liberal amounts of grease, carefully coating the rear race surface. Now install the inner bearing (bearing next to the seal) into the rear of the hub, matching the cone of the bearing to the race. (DO NOT INSTALL THE BEARING BACKWARDS!)

    4. Now, with the pre-greased inner bearing sitting in the hub drum, add more grease on top of the rear bearing. There will be a space of about 1/4" between the inner bearing and the seal. It is essential that this cavity be filled with grease.

    Now set the double lip seal (the inner lip with the spring goes inside the hub) squarely atop the rear hub bore. Set a wood block on top of the seal and tap with a hammer until the seal is flush with the rear hub bore.
    This completes the rear bearing and seal installation. At this point, turn the hub over on the table, being careful not to get dirt into the grease at the rear of the hub. Now pack liberal amounts of grease in the inner hub cavity.

    NOTE: Be sure that the grease you use is a low to medium viscosity (high temperature) grease. Low to medium viscosity grease will flow around and through the hub cavity and bearings providing more total lubricant to the bearings than a high viscosity grease. High viscosity greases tend to centrifuge to the outer hub cavity wall where they stick and stay with only the small amount of grease in the bearing rollers providing lubrication.
     
  13. TDawgNOk

    TDawgNOk Gathering Monitor (Instigator)

    Messages:
    3,365
    State:
    Tulsa, Oklahoma

    my hubs are exposed without the ziplock bags. Keeps the dust/dirt/road grime from getting into the hub. Same as dust covers do
     
  14. Bubbakat

    Bubbakat New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    McMinnvill
    Tony you can get those hub covers at most wal-mart stores.
    In the boat supply section.
     
  15. Matt Smith

    Matt Smith New Member

    Messages:
    119
    State:
    Tennessee
    Napa is cheaper and they have a MUCH better selection than Wal Mart. I just went through that ordeal at Reelfoot last Thursday.
     
  16. duxsrus

    duxsrus New Member

    Messages:
    1,014
    State:
    SW Ohio
    I've used Bearing Buddy brand for a long time until two summers ago I had one fly off unnoticed until I had a total meltdown on the way home from vacation, still about 2 hours from home. To make a long story short, a Napa is where I got the parts to get me home. I liked their bearing buddys so much, I took the ones that came off of the new axle I wound up having to buy and put on the Napa brand ones.
     
  17. craigr

    craigr New Member

    Messages:
    41
    State:
    Nebraska
    This is probably a dumb question, but....

    Do you have to replace the Bearing Buddies everytime you remove them?

    On my last boat, when I did a bearing overhaul before a trip, I lost a Bearing Buddy going Somewhere on the Interstate. I had to buy a new SET of couse.

    It's time to do a bearing overhaul on my latest boat & figure I will have to buy new Bearing Buddies.

    Is there a way to remove the old ones without damaging them?

    craigr
     
  18. wigginsdano59

    wigginsdano59 New Member

    Messages:
    91
    State:
    alabama
    I am curious about replacing the bb also
     
  19. Bubbakat

    Bubbakat New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    McMinnvill
    No you shouldn't have to replace the bearing buddies. Just take a hammer, I use a raw hide mallet, and just circle the outside edge with light taps and they should work their selves out without damage.
    The reason you loose them is because the hub gets bored out sometimes and it looses some of the tightness and the constant circular motion set on by wheel rotation makes them work out.
    I have some what of a cure for that to.
     
  20. savage308

    savage308 New Member

    Messages:
    399
    State:
    Victoria, Texas
    If your having trouble with the buddy bearings coming out of your hub your tire may be out of balance. Another cause is one side of the axle may have moved a lil bit. If neither of these is the culprit then take a small chisel and rough up the edges of the buddy bearing that goes into the hub. This will provide a tight fit and keep it on. Also I carry a extra cap or two in my truck tool box incase I lose one or in some instances someone takes them off at the boat ramp. (it's been known to happen)

    Hope this helps.....:big_smile: