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Front Wheel Bearing End Play

JedIEG

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Location
Columbus IN
I took my Road Runner in for new front tires before getting the front end realigned. The tires were shot because I seem to have too much camber diled in. While at the shop the tech pointed out some endplay in the front wheel bearings and suggested I look at if I needed new bearings before the alignment. Does anyone know what the endplay is supposed to be for the wheel bearings?
I have not touched the bearings since we rebuilt the car 5 years ago, but I only have a few thousand miles on them so they are not very old bearings.
(1972 factory discs)
 
Probably new ones aren't needed. Take them apart for inspection. Clean them if needed, inspect, and replace as needed. May be they only need repacked, may be just adjusted. I'm sure there's some endplay spec in the service manual. In 50+ years I have never measured and have never had an issue or failure. Spin the rotor while snugging the nut to seat everything. I do that 2 or 3 times. Snug the nut up until you don't have any in and out play. If you do, tighten the nut one flat and test again. Put the tin retainer on the nut and see how the cotter key hole lines up.

I'll edit my post so some here don't have a cow. Run the nut 1 flat loose from zero or one cotter key opening from zero. (it depends on what design of retainer your car has)
 
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Thanks that basically the direction I was going in. I'm still debating on if I should wait on the alignment before or after I mess with the bearings.
Do you guys have a recommendation for grease? I remember Mopar Action had a specific recommendation but I can't remember what that was.
 
It's an art.

Between "no drag" and "no slop".

Make the bearings right before the alignment.
 
Thanks that basically the direction I was going in. I'm still debating on if I should wait on the alignment before or after I mess with the bearings.
Do you guys have a recommendation for grease? I remember Mopar Action had a specific recommendation but I can't remember what that was.
I have used a lot of different greases. Just a small tub of wheel bearing grease is all you need.
 
Just snug them up good for the alignment. They can be dealt with after
 
...and the knowledge to pack them properly.
Yes. if the op hasn't packed wheel bearings before it's best to watch a video and do it right. Be prepared to get greasy. It's fun to do though.
 
This is a pretty good video. The guy cleans things nicely and packs them by hand.

Ah, see the discoloration on those rollers? It has been run hot. It will probably be ok to reuse. I rarely replace bearings and races. only as needed. Always when the races have chatter marks or the rollers have galled.
 
Thanks. I usually over prepair for stuff. I watch a few videos and pull out my FSM, my 1969 copy of auto mechanics fundamentals, the Haynes manual and bother my dad who used to do this all the time and did this car originally.
I'm planning to wash them in degrease, and flush with mineral spirits before inspection. Do you ever have issues with the inner bearing sticking to the hub or any tools to remove those without damaging?
 
I don't like the heat marks on those. I'd replace them...and then check the outer races to see if they had heat blueing as well.
 
On the outer WB's when clean look at roller for rolled in debris. Squeeze rollers against inner race and turn inner race to feel any rough spots.
 
I took my Road Runner in for new front tires before getting the front end realigned. The tires were shot because I seem to have too much camber diled in. While at the shop the tech pointed out some endplay in the front wheel bearings and suggested I look at if I needed new bearings before the alignment. Does anyone know what the endplay is supposed to be for the wheel bearings?
I have not touched the bearings since we rebuilt the car 5 years ago, but I only have a few thousand miles on them so they are not very old bearings.
(1972 factory discs)
How much camber does it have? I like a lot myself.....much more than the book calls for and it helps a car handle better but, to keep the tire wear even, you have to have more toe-in but it doesn't take much more to end up with even tire wear unless you are running pretty wide tires.
 
I don't like the heat marks on those. I'd replace them...and then check the outer races to see if they had heat blueing as well.
If I'm running mostly around town and not running 80 mph on the highway, I'd run those bearings in a heart beat. My 95 beater Dakota rarely sees 55 anymore.....and it's still running the originals.
 
I took my Road Runner in for new front tires before getting the front end realigned. The tires were shot because I seem to have too much camber diled in. While at the shop the tech pointed out some endplay in the front wheel bearings and suggested I look at if I needed new bearings before the alignment. Does anyone know what the endplay is supposed to be for the wheel bearings?
I have not touched the bearings since we rebuilt the car 5 years ago, but I only have a few thousand miles on them so they are not very old bearings.
(1972 factory discs)

.001-.005”

Ideally zero end play, but you can’t measure zero. Probably overkill, but I set the bearings with a dial indicator to the least end play possible…

IMG_4722.jpeg
 
For drums, you tighten the nut to 90 in.lbs while rotating, then line up an open slot in the retainer with the cotter pin hole and back off one slot with the retainer in place before installing cotter. This will give between .000"-.003" endplay. I would think yours would use the same procedure. Confirm with your fsm.
 
Thanks. I usually over prepair for stuff. I watch a few videos and pull out my FSM, my 1969 copy of auto mechanics fundamentals, the Haynes manual and bother my dad who used to do this all the time and did this car originally.
I'm planning to wash them in degrease, and flush with mineral spirits before inspection. Do you ever have issues with the inner bearing sticking to the hub or any tools to remove those without damaging?
After I remove the outer bearing, I put the nut and washer back on, then yank the rotor to pull the inner bearing and seal out. Works well enough on the seal that if you wanted to reuse it, it is not damaged.
 
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.001-.005”

Ideally zero end play, but you can’t measure zero. Probably overkill, but I set the bearings with a dial indicator to the least end play possible…

View attachment 1655218
Is end play mainly to facilitate lubrication, in that if there was no movement, the included grease would have little chance of the rollers every being able tp "pick up" grease while rotating? Whereas if an oil bath bearing, seems end play as close to zero would be fine.
I have never read/heard a discussing of why end is actually needed for greased bearings. We are of course not discussing tight/bound bearing adjustments.
 
Is end play mainly to facilitate lubrication, in that if there was no movement, the included grease would have little chance of the rollers every being able tp "pick up" grease while rotating? Whereas if an oil bath bearing, seems end play as close to zero would be fine.
I have never read/heard a discussing of why end is actually needed for greased bearings. We are of course not discussing tight/bound bearing adjustments.

I believe some clearance is necessary to allow for thermal expansion as well. In the past I’ve worked on high speed jack shaft and fan assemblies that specified .008-.012 end play, they ran in an oil bath so maybe the extra clearance benefits lubrication. Going back to wheel ends, all of the formal training I’ve had from industry experts dictates .001-.005 end play. I had to document it on repair orders when I worked in the field, I guess old habits die hard…
 
I believe some clearance is necessary to allow for thermal expansion as well. In the past I’ve worked on high speed jack shaft and fan assemblies that specified .008-.012 end play, they ran in an oil bath so maybe the extra clearance benefits lubrication. Going back to wheel ends, all of the formal training I’ve had from industry experts dictates .001-.005 end play. I had to document it on repair orders when I worked in the field, I guess old habits die hard…
But a fan has no impact loads, its a relative constant/load speed, unlike an on the road wheel assembly that might apply here.
Not sure how to address thermal issues. Do front discs that I believe run hotter in track conditions require even greater play to account for the higher temps? If so, I haven't heard that discussed before.
Not counting discs prefer zero end play regarding pad kickback, etc.
 
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