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Discussion Starter #1
Earlier this spring when putting on a new front tire i checked my front wheel bearings. I thought they were suprisingly tight but they rolled smooth. I noted but i decided to keep them. With the new tire I felt a binding feel in the bars. Checked the wheel again but it spun smooth but was still tight. Finally i decided to change them. I removed the wheel and while inspecting i noticed that the inner bearing race was not lined up with the outter race on either side. The inner race was pushed to the outside of the outer race. they were binding!.

I bought new bearings and when i removed the old oem bearings they were straight, true and spun freely. What the heck? So i inspected the rim and other parts. Turns out the distance collar that you insert in the hub between the inner races is longer then the distance between the outter race saddles machined into the wheel hub. I'm guessing .1 inches! when you drive the bearing in the hub until seated per the service manual you will actually push the inner bearing races to the outside of the outer races and bind up the bearing.

Is this right??
 

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Whoa

That can't be right. Are you using the correct bearings? Is it the original rim? Has someone made their own bearing separater? Are you measuring with a micrometer?If what you say is true then you should be able to insert a bearing in one side of the tire and then insert the separater and it should stick out enough on the other side so that you can see the extra length you say is there!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
This bike is a 2008. I bought it new in 2010. Original rim and bearings to me. Yes you are exactly right. The bearing spacer is longer than the rim is wide. I have not measured it but you can "feel" it. I did some additional research last night. I was supprised to read that this is common at least for hardley abelson.

I believe the original bearings could have been installed incorrectly. I did read in the Kawi manual that they say to install the right bearing first. It's written poorly but i think you install the right bearing to the bottom of the seat. then install the spacer and finally drive the left bearing until it meets the spacer. Then STOP. do not drive the left bearing till fully seated. If you follow this all the dimensioned front end geometry is based upon a fully seated right bearing. The left can "float"

I believe this procedure is fully consistant with what hardley publishes. I think this is correct but kawi sure does a poor job of detailing this procedure.

Please let me know if I am totally OFF here

Thanks
 

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hi this is not unusual. after you have assembled the wheel bearings and fitted to bike,tighten axle correctly and give both ends of the axle a firm hit with a soft hammer or soft drift.this will seat the bearings to the correct distance.this is always good practice with any wheel bearing replacement.the spacer is often slightly to long (probably meant to be) better to be like this than firm or short.you will find the wheel spins much freer.
 
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