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  1. #1
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    how to ajust 550 rear wheel bearings

    noticed that the rear bearings where running loose, so l had a look
    the rear drive side was loose but cant see how to sintch it up as it looks like the free hub covers the other nut any help would be nice.
    home spun

  2. #2
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    Hub knowledge

    Quote Originally Posted by carbon13
    noticed that the rear bearings where running loose, so l had a look
    the rear drive side was loose but cant see how to sintch it up as it looks like the free hub covers the other nut any help would be nice.
    Hubs don't loosen on one side. You have a cone on each side, and if you tighten one cone, then that tightens the system. Remove th wheel from the frame, apply 14mm cone wrenches to the left (non-freehub) side lock nut and cone to loosen the locknut. Then you can tighten the cone and remove the play. Make sure that there is no binding when you turn the axle. If you have to choose between a little bit of play and binding, go with the bit of play. Once you have it adjusted, tighten the lock nuts and then check again for play and binding. It may take a couple of tries. If you go to the Shimano web site and get a blowup diagram of the hub, the principles of adjustment should be fairly obvious.

  3. #3
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    thanks kerry
    home spun

  4. #4
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    Mostly same advice as above, but question??

    Is it loose in your hand or once it is on the frame with the QR tight?

    Correctly adjusted cone and cup bearings will have a small amount of play off the bike.
    The axle is compressible, so when you tighten the QR, the play goes away. If you adjust it perfectly off the bike, when you tighten the QR, it becomes too tight.

    Take the tire off and check that the play is there when it is tightened in the frame. Adjust it very slightly about 1/8 turn at a time and keep checking until the play is gone.

    Also, you will have an easier time adjusting if you remove the cassette so that you can reach the right side locknut and cone.

    Here's the EV:
    http://techdocs.shimano.com/media/te...9830608666.pdf
    Last edited by android; 03-05-2008 at 06:00 PM.

  5. #5
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    it was loose in the bike a couple of mm play
    took off the cassette and tried to tighten the lock nut but no joy
    still can move it with my fingers the bike way past its first service date so l might ask to sit in and watch how they do it
    thanks everyone
    home spun

  6. #6
    p != b
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    I love the sound of cowbell in the morning.

  7. #7
    wim
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    Why bother the casette?

    Quote Originally Posted by carbon13
    it was loose in the bike a couple of mm play
    took off the cassette and tried to tighten the lock nut but no joy
    still can move it with my fingers the bike way past its first service date so l might ask to sit in and watch how they do it
    thanks everyone
    As said in Kerry's post, there's no need to take the cassette off or touch anything on the cassette side of the hub. It's all done with the left, easily accessible cone and locknut.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by wim
    As said in Kerry's post, there's no need to take the cassette off or touch anything on the cassette side of the hub. It's all done with the left, easily accessible cone and locknut.
    Not really, It didn't get loose because the bearings shrunk. It got loose because one or both of the cone/locknuts were not tight enough. So you need to verify the cone and locknut are tight on both sides before putting it back together. You can't access this properly with the cassette on. Do the job right and you won't have a problem again.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by wim
    As said in Kerry's post, there's no need to take the cassette off or touch anything on the cassette side of the hub. It's all done with the left, easily accessible cone and locknut.
    Sometimes it's easier to remove the cassette to apply a wrench to that side to hold the axle still when tightening the non drive locknut. Otherwise you often end up tightening the tension nut up to the locknut instead of the other way around. It took me a while to figure that out

    Now I hold the wheel in a vise from the drive side nut, and use a skewer and a few spacers to mimic "mounted axle compression." Now it's quick and easy to adjust to "minute play" at half tight / "no play" at full tight - all done at the bench. YMMV

    I agree that adjustments should only be made to the non-drive side.

    BTW, a couple mm of play is a lot. Probably should make sure that you have all 9 bbs on each side (IIRC)

  10. #10
    wim
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    Possible, but not probable.

    Quote Originally Posted by android
    Not really, It didn't get loose because the bearings shrunk. It got loose because one or both of the cone/locknuts were not tight enough. So you need to verify the cone and locknut are tight on both sides before putting it back together. You can't access this properly with the cassette on. Do the job right and you won't have a problem again.
    I see your point and agree that it's a possibility. But ball bearings start to wear initially by breaking down the high points of irregularities on the surface of the bearing races. Wear debris begins to accumulate in the lubricant, contributing to further wear of the races. In almost all cases, this is the cause of first-time play with new bearings.

    The statement that a bearing "got loose because one or both of the cone/locknuts were not tight enough" could be true, but probability and my experience says "it ain't so." I'd be very surprised (and would hang my head in abject shame) if the OP posts his findings and proves me wrong.

  11. #11
    wim
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    Quote Originally Posted by rogerstg
    Sometimes it's easier to remove the cassette to apply a wrench to that side to hold the axle still when tightening the non drive locknut. Otherwise you often end up tightening the tension nut up to the locknut instead of the other way around. It took me a while to figure that out.
    Interesting—I've always had an easier time getting perfection if I counter the locknut against its cone and let the other side of the axle do whatever it wants. Not saying my way is better, just making an observation.

    Good idea on simulating axle compression!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by wim
    Interesting—I've always had an easier time getting perfection if I counter the locknut against its cone and let the other side of the axle do whatever it wants. Not saying my way is better, just making an observation.

    Good idea on simulating axle compression!
    So if you got a cone wrench on the cone and a wrench on the locknut and the axle is free, how can you tell if you are tightening the locknut or loosening the cone as you jam them together?

    Usually I will "really jam" the freewheel side cone and locknut and lightly jam the left side cone and locknut. Then if I need to adjust in, turn the left locknut CW holding the FW locknut and if I need to adjust out turn the left cone CCW holding the FW cone. Then I have equal forces opposing and can get very precise. On new hubs, of course, you jam your 5mm in axle, so that makes it a lot easier. (except for the QR squeeze part which now has to be done more trial and error)

    CW clock-wise.
    CCW counter clock-wise

  13. #13
    wim
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    Quote Originally Posted by android
    So if you got a cone wrench on the cone and a wrench on the locknut and the axle is free, how can you tell if you are tightening the locknut or loosening the cone as you jam them together?
    Good point—I can't tell. Had to go and do it to write about it: I run the cone finger-tight against the balls, then the locknut finger-tight against the cone—the bearing is much too tight at this point. Then I back the cone CCW against the stationary locknut, which establishes bearing play. I understand that the axle turns whith that procedure, and that this is probably the reason why I need 2or 3 runs at it to get it perfect. I'm also tempted to admit that your way is better, but habit is a hard beast to slay, and I'm old.

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