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Old 04-02-2006, 10:49 AM   #12
Wayne Weber
why are we stopping?
Joined: Aug 2003
Location: Golden CO
Oddometer: 3,856
Using plastic mug for a wheel bearing

I'll try a cut and paste here, an excerpt from a trip a couple years ago, quoting Wes Weber:

"On the way back home, I noticed a little wobble on the way into Gunnison. After we had a nice lunch with KatieM and some people that say she belongs to them (yeah, like they could have a kid THAT good!), I wiggled both wheels and the front bearings seemed a little loose. The back was fine.

As we wandered up towards Cottonwood Pass I noticed the wobbling was intermittently getting worse, so I kept looking at the front wheel to check it. I'd make it home. Then it got REALLY bad REALLY quick. But it was difinitely the BACK wheel - I thought, 'Not ANOTHER frickin flat tire!!' I pulled over. Tire was fine. I spun the wheel. Oh CRAP!

The wheel moved sideways about 1.5 inches. Plus, when I spun it, it was eccentric. It would stretch my chain about 1/2 inch, then almost fall off the sprocket. Bad, bad news. Here's the bearing after we pulled it out.

Now some others say this could have been caused by the 10,274 water crossings I did during the photo shoot with Baldy. Some also say that this could have been aggrivated when Arethustra and I decended Imogene at 47 MPH. I still say its just because my bike hates me. But my wife loves me. So I got out the Sat phone and called Janet, and had her start heading towards Buena Vista (about 2 hours from our home in Golden). I had 30 miles to go in 2 hours. How we gonna fix this thing?

Some brain storming of the three of us led to the solution. I jokingly wished I had a piece of Delrin and my lathe to make a spacer in place of the bearing. Wayne suggesed some plastic on the bike, maybe zip-ties. JuanG had:

Yes, the famous OSCAR cup! It was perfect. Hard plastic, not too brittle, seemed to resist galling. Excellent, AFekete! Thanks for saving my butt! Did you have a bearing replacement in mind when you picked out the mugs! I thought so, nice job!

Wayne fabbed a split-ring spacer from the cup, and I fabbed another from my hand guard. After oiling this with my air filter oil from Failure Number 1, we had a low friction surface that should hold up well. I was able to ride 30mph for 30 miles on this. It probably could have gone longer and faster, but obviously I didn't want to push it. JuanG was gracious enough to follow behind with his hazard lights on to help keep everthing safe. Thanks, Juan.

A big thanks to all who helped me out through the weekend. It was awesome."

04 KTM 950 S
93 KTM 550
93 XT225 Adventure Serow!
00 Weber Rally Twin (
Gas Gas 270
2 Waterbuffalo's (Sold!)
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