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Thread: Front bearings......lube

  1. #1
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    Front bearings......lube

    Would there be some kind of warning if the front wheel bearings are dry and need to be re-packed??
    Could there be a scenario where the front wheel(s) just seize up with no warning??

  2. #2
    President Member christophe's Avatar
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    Yup! Seen that on a Champion.The spindle broke and you can easily assume the rest of it. Do a favor to your car. Clean thoroughly your front bearings after dismantling them. Replace them if necessary. Then repack them with high quality bearing grease. If this has not been done before, the remains of the original grease is not up to its job after so many years. If your front hubs get hot after only a few miles, this job is certainly overdue.
    Nice weekend to all.

  3. #3
    President Member TWChamp's Avatar
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    Don't adjust the nut too tight. I tighten the nut by hand as I spin the wheel, then back off and lightly snug the nut to the closest slot in the castle nut. It would be no tighter than the weight of a 10 or 12 inch adjustable wrench hanging on the nut at the 3 o'clock position. I always clean and repack the front wheel bearings when I buy an old car. I use MYSTIK JT-6 High Temp Red grease. It's a very sticky grease and works great for everything that gets greased on my cars.

  4. #4
    President Member Noxnabaker's Avatar
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    When doing Josephine in Holland I changed one & cleaned & greased the other one well & drove it a while there but only short bits & later on we loaded it up & drove to Sweden & after a while driving in Sweden the non-replaced one was getting hot & I could feel a wee bit of play... So I repleced that one too.
    The thing with old stuff such as bearings is that there are probably small rust-pitting on their surfaces that'll eat the nearby steel also!
    It's a bit like "rebuilding" brake cylinders: you'll have to do it again or replace it soon enough anyway or you'll be in serious no fun trouble...
    Or like having a flat, mostly happens when in a hurry & it's raining.


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  5. #5
    President Member 62champ's Avatar
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    One thing to keep in mind - the hub does not need a bunch of excess grease in it. When taking apart the front axle on the Champ pickup I am working on, someone had almost filled the inner part of the hub with extra grease. All this did was cause it to overcome the ability of the rear seal to keep it out of the front drum and got the inner cup pretty nasty.

    Just clean and block out the bearing, repack and smear some on the outerside of the rollers, and put it all together - that extra grease will not help out and possible cause problems once it finds its way out. Good luck.


  6. #6
    President Member christophe's Avatar
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    Most of the time, this happens when the grease cap has been overfilled. There is an orifice on the backing plate to let unwanted grease out, but it is often clogged.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hawklover View Post
    Would there be some kind of warning if the front wheel bearings are dry and need to be re-packed??
    Could there be a scenario where the front wheel(s) just seize up with no warning??
    I second that "yup." I once had an '83 Pontiac Bonneville SW. Those are RWD and, spindle and bearing-wise, are essentially the same as a Studebaker (seems to me one or both bearings are the same). While returning home from a long trip a loud screeching noise began in the front. One front wheel bearing had seized up and tore up the spindle such that the spindle had to be replaced. I have paid better attention to my front wheel bearings since then.
    -Dwight
    Last edited by Dwight FitzSimons; 10-06-2018 at 07:59 PM.

  8. #8
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    As a tribute to my Dad, 53 years ago he was in town for my wedding. We were going someplace in my wife's car with me and noticed a slight noise in the front of the car. This was a two year old '63 Chevy II. He said we need to have the front wheels checked. We stopped at a garage and sure enough the front wheel bearings were dry. This was timely as two weeks later we drove the car from California to Missouri. Thanks goodness for his experience.
    Perry
    \'50 Business Champ,
    \'50 Starlight Champ,
    \'60 Lark Convertible,
    \'63 GT R1,
    \'67 Triumph TR4A

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