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Thread: Bad bearings?

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    Bad bearings?

    When I take the front wheel off and turn the hub skewer, It feels rough and almost gritty. The seals on the bearings look good and the bile has less than 1000 miles on it. When I place the tire on the ground and apply pressure to the skewer as I turn it, it seems somewhat smoother. Is This normal, can I replace the bearings or is a new hub needed?

    Also when I am riding in a high gear ratio and pushing down hard on the pedals I hear a clicking noise which I believe is the chain rubbing on the front derailleur. I can't adjust the derailleur with out making things worse. Does this mean my crank bearings are bad or is it just caused by flex in sub par components?

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    Turning the skewer wont tell you anything about the bearings because there are no bearings between the skewer and the axle. Try turning the axle in the hub.
    Try aligning the front der cage with the chain in high gear, rather than with the chainring.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewP View Post
    Turning the skewer wont tell you anything about the bearings because there are no bearings between the skewer and the axle.
    I have my terminology wrong, it must be the axle I am turning, I can see the bearings move when I do so. I will try the alignment thing though.

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    You should be able to replace the hub bearings if you need to, but maybe you just need to clean and regrease them. This a cup and cone type hub or cartridge bearing hub?

    Your clicking noise could be from a number of things. Maybe removing your bottom bracket and cleaning/regreasing/reinstalling would take care of it, maybe it's your pedals, could even be elsewhere on the bike, like a seatpost/clamp interface. If your chain is contacting the derailleur (clicking doesn't sound right for this to me, but describing bike noises on the internet can be difficult) you might also check to see if your chainring is running true and that the chainring bolts are tight.
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    Most new wheelsets I've gotten that have cup and cone bearings have the preload adjusted too high. You'll feel this not so much as a gritty feeling but a sort of cogging like the balls are jumping from one detent position to the next. To fix it you need to learn to adjust the cones and locknuts correctly and to get a cone wrenche to fit your wheels.

    And since you're using a quick release skewer you'll want to get some blocks, washers or use some other trick that allow you to adjust the cones while there is the regular skewer tension on the axle. The skewer actually compresses the axle enough to matter.

    When adjusted correctly the bearings should create a little bit of drag but not be so tight that you feel that cogging. When you release the skewer tension you may find that the axle has the tiniest bit of play. But that's OK because you'll never be riding it unless the skewer is tight.
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    The front wheel is a cartridge bearing hub, the seals look good so I doubt that any dirt got into the bearings.
    If I can replace the bearings that would be great, otherwise I think it is time for a disk upgrade.

    The click is actually 3 or 4 clicks in succession per revolution, it sounds to me as if the chain briefly rubs the derailleur.

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    If it contains bearing units just replace the bearings from the hardware store, try to get SKF bearings, SKF is the world leader of bearings (in any domain of use), get the old bearing unit with you or get the code number written on it probably is 61805RS

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    Quote Originally Posted by Crona View Post
    The front wheel is a cartridge bearing hub, the seals look good so I doubt that any dirt got into the bearings.
    If I can replace the bearings that would be great, otherwise I think it is time for a disk upgrade.

    The click is actually 3 or 4 clicks in succession per revolution, it sounds to me as if the chain briefly rubs the derailleur.
    I've yet to be able to tell if a cartridge bearing is contaminated by the looks of the seal...
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    Not all cartridge bearings are actually sealed. There's sealed, shielded and open. It may be that your wheel has shielded bearings that are a close fit but still open. Or you may find something inside the axle and hub when you open it up to remove the present bearings. Either way be it the bearings or something else the issue will become apparent.
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    Well, are there any cartridge bearings that are truly sealed?
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    yes, those with rubber/plastic seals are sealed, "friction type". These are marked RS (for one seal) or 2RS for two seals
    Others are shielded by two or more "serpentine" pieces of tin that is held in the outer ring and on the inner ring, the tins do not touch each other but the gap is very small and very long(because of the serpentine profile) so it keeps grease in and dust out, theoretically. These are marked RZ or 2RZ

    A true dust-free bearing and completely sealed can be obtained only with "zimmer-rings" like the end seals of a crankshaft in an engine that keeps the oil in and dust out.

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