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Old 08-01-2006, 11:22 AM
riethoven's Avatar
Conservative Radical
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Eastern Long Island
Posts: 940
I guess I was a little confused too!

Originally Posted by autozen
I'm cofussed I can see this for certain applications but not front wheel bearings. They slide right on at ambient temp.
I must admit that after I responded to the post I too was wondering why anyone would need a bearing race installer for any automotive front wheel bearing.

I am not a professional mechanic, but have switched enough front axle bearings and have never needed a race installer. They always just slid on. I also stated this in my last post.


1987 300TD x 3
2005 E320CDI
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Old 08-01-2006, 11:36 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Northern Calif. (Fairfield Area)
Posts: 2,225
I think we're having a failure to communicate. The race is the part the bearing runs in. The outer races are pressed into the hub and the bearings are dropped into the races. The inner races slide into place over the axle spindle and are preloaded with the nut with the allen bolt.
Auto Zentral Ltd.
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Old 08-01-2006, 01:47 PM
I told you so!
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Motor City, MI
Posts: 2,852
I work for a bearing manufacturer. The reason a specialized bearing heater is used to install press fit races is because too much heat from home made heating can take the temper out of the metal, drastically reducing bearing life.

When I say home made heating, this usually refers to people who use torches to heat the part, which I've seen. Using a hot plate or coffee maker sounds fine with me as long as the installer is mindful of not overheating the part. For a DIYer who only needs to install races occassionally, this sounds like a good method instead of buying specialized equipment to clutter up the garage.

95 E320 Cabriolet, 159K
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