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Discussion Starter #1
I’m rebuilding my 81 CM400C and I took apart the steering stem today. The upper grease for the bearings was pretty dried out. The bottoms ones weren’t as dried out. I pulled the races out on the top and bottom and cleaned them up. My original thinking was to repack them and put them back in, but after doing some searching around, looks like the recommendation is to upgrade the bearings and races with tapered bearings and maybe only used the ball bearings in the top and the tapered bearings in the bottom.

The ones from All Balls Racing seem to be the recommendation.


I’ve been unable to get the bottom cone race off the stem though. Any suggestions to getting it off?

With upgrading to tapered bearings though I would assume I still want the dust seal in place at the bottom, correct?







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Jim explained in your other thread, the lower race has to be driven off the stem. If they make a kit for both upper and lower tapered bearings, that's the way I'd go. I put an AllBalls kit in my 450 and it's worth the money, not to mention you'll NEVER have to deal with it again. The loose balls and races get flat pots on them fairly easily and make for "notchy" steering, never happens with rollers
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Jim explained in your other thread, the lower race has to be driven off the stem. If they make a kit for both upper and lower tapered bearings, that's the way I'd go. I put an AllBalls kit in my 450 and it's worth the money, not to mention you'll NEVER have to deal with it again. The loose balls and races get flat pots on them fairly easily and make for "notchy" steering, never happens with rollers
Thanks. I haven’t looked closely yet, but some of the bearings did feel a little funny when I was cleaning them. There was a notchy feeling in the steering before I took it apart. They do have a kit for the top and bottom. think I’m gonna upgrade to the tapered bearings.


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Tom is right. Tapered bearings are a big improvement over balls. Ball bearings are teh same technology that bicycles have used for the last 120 years or so. Tapered bearings can carry a lot more load. There is a lot larger contact area between the roller and race over balls. That grease looks pretty bad. I would expect the wheel bearings and swing arm pivots are the same.
 

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The All Balls kit is upper and lower bearings as well as the appropriate seals so don't worry about your old ones.
As I mentioned previously start with a flat chisel and drive it between the race and lower triple in 3-4 locations. Then switch to a drift and drive it off.
Do Not throw any of it away until you get the kit and follow the instructions carefully. You will be setting installed height in comparison with you old bearings.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The All Balls kit is upper and lower bearings as well as the appropriate seals so don't worry about your old ones.
As I mentioned previously start with a flat chisel and drive it between the race and lower triple in 3-4 locations. Then switch to a drift and drive it off.
Do Not throw any of it away until you get the kit and follow the instructions carefully. You will be setting installed height in comparison with you old bearings.
I got the bottom race off the stem. I’m gonna try to get the tapered bearings ordered this week.


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I hope its okay to piggy back on this thread. I tried to get new bearings on my stem and I just can't seem to get it that final mm. I have a bearing driver and I've been smacking it as hard as I possibly can but it wont budge. I've tried with wood under the lower triple and without, doesn't make a difference. Are there any tricks I can try? I had the stem in the freezer before installing the bearing but now that the bearing is pretty much on there will the freezer work? I fear it'll just stick them together. What else should I try? Thanks for the help!
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What bike? Mine (cb350f-cb750f) require a thick washer under the bearing...
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yeah, you might need a washer under it. Here is a link some directions off the AllBalls website.


Besides freezing the stem, I was also told to put the bearing in a toaster oven to heat it up as well before putting it on. You would have to get it back off the stem first to put in any needed shim washer and to refreeze and heat the bearing for reassembly.


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Sorry forgot that bit, it's an '81 CB750C. The bearing kit didn't come with any washers and the instructions for the standard installation didn't say anything about washers. I thought the washers were only for conversions. I really hope I don't have to take it off again.
 

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The all balls kit for that type does not contain a washer either and these are usually very complete. The kit does however have the thin dust washer that appears to be the size that you now have remaining on the stem.

When you removed the old bearing, you probably distroyed it (i cannot save them either), but if you kept it you can check the thickness.

I dont think it is a major issue running without them.

Did you try and fit the stem?

If you cannot move the stem after tightening it you still might need a washer or try and move it further down.
 
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