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2013 FJR1300
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With the experience of changing steering bearings on the Vstrom, I feel fairly conident approaching the FJR.

I'll probably go ahead and get a Dremel-type tool. I have so many tools already, but it's still way cheaper and more convenient than paying a dealer or independent shop to do the job. Also less chance of them breaking stuff by trying to cut corners/speed through the repair. I've had more than enough of that from the couple of times I had shops do things.
I‘m with you. With the exception of some very expensive specialty tools most motorcycle jobs can be done by yourself for a fraction of the cost a dealer or shop would charge. As a bonus you now have new tools. But for me the best part is the knowledge you gain about your own motorcycle and the fact that you know you did the job right.Not like the time you did take your bike to the shop and they forgot to tighten the bolt to your ABS sensor causing it to fall out. Makes you wonder what else they forgot to tighten when they had your wheels off.
 

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Scott B... Well said.

BTW if you scratch or gouge the steering stem down by the bump stops trying to get the bottom race off, who cares? It's a part you can't even see. I put a couple of scratches/gouges and dents in mine (on the bottom triple tree the forks go thru, not the stem itself) and you'd never know it. A couple of misses with the hammer, a couple of slips with the Dremel... big deal.
 

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Versys 1000, VFR800
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Found my old pic too..... 40 mm ID, 50mm OD... methinks you'll need very close to the 40 ID to fit....

Automotive tire Tape measure Crankset Measuring instrument Tool
 

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2015 FJR-1300ESF
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711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #85 ·
Well that's somewhat disappointing. Both bikes use the same size bearings, you'd think the steering stems (and nuts) would be pretty much the same as well. Close, but no tobacco product.

Thanks for answering that question!
 

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Okay, I'm cheap and lazy. Went to the local hardware store and spent about $6 for a 1 1/4" deep socket (cause that's what they had). Spent a few minutes with an angle grinder and made my own castle nut socket. It's not perfect, but it doesn't have to be. Even if it only had 2 teeth that would be enough for a low torque application. YMMV !!

dan



Wood Door Metal Titanium Cylinder
Wood Bicycle part Household hardware Auto part Circle
Office supplies Wind instrument Writing implement Wood Liquid
 

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2015 FJR-1300ESF
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711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #87 ·
And here I thought angle grinders were only for cutting off parking boots!

That actually looks pretty good.

I pretty much decided I'm getting a rotary cutter (aka Dremel) anyway, I suppose I could make things like this if needed.
 

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2015 FJR-1300ESF
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711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #89 ·
Thanks for the update!

I'm fixin' to order a bearings kit myself. Recently cleared out some garage space and got some practice jacking up the front of the FJR in preparation for this job.
 

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I have ridden nearly 30000 miles on my FJR and have not had a single shimmy, wobble or anything else, neither have I touched my head bearings, they are exactly as they left the factory, but I do make sure my wheels are balanced correctly.
I find these threads quite bizzare, how can a static bearing cause a wobble - it cannot. The head bearings cannot cause the bars to wobble, it is impossible. What they do is allow the bars to wobble due to poorly balanced wheels.
Tapered head bearings have more resistance which masks the wobble, they do not fix poorly balanced wheels.
 

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2007A, 2013A
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I have ridden nearly 30000 miles on my FJR and have not had a single shimmy, wobble or anything else, neither have I touched my head bearings, they are exactly as they left the factory, but I do make sure my wheels are balanced correctly.
I find these threads quite bizzare, how can a static bearing cause a wobble - it cannot. The head bearings cannot cause the bars to wobble, it is impossible. What they do is allow the bars to wobble due to poorly balanced wheels.
Tapered head bearings have more resistance which masks the wobble, they do not fix poorly balanced wheels.
I don't understand why you been fighting the data all this time, you are not convincing anyone of anything. I say if you haven't had a problem then good on you! But many of us DO have a problem and this is one permanent remedy.
 

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2015 FJR-1300ESF
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711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #92 ·
I have ridden nearly 30000 miles on my FJR and have not had a single shimmy, wobble or anything else, neither have I touched my head bearings, they are exactly as they left the factory, but I do make sure my wheels are balanced correctly.
I find these threads quite bizzare, how can a static bearing cause a wobble - it cannot. The head bearings cannot cause the bars to wobble, it is impossible. What they do is allow the bars to wobble due to poorly balanced wheels.
Tapered head bearings have more resistance which masks the wobble, they do not fix poorly balanced wheels.
Just because a thing has not happened to you does not mean it is impossible.
 

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And considering so many guys have said the tapered bearings have solved their problem how can you insist "The head bearings cannot cause the bars to wobble, it is impossible."?

One can learn a lot when one has an open mind.
 
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2015 FJR-1300ESF
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Discussion Starter · #94 ·
Have obtained bearings-and-seals kit.

I went with the Pivot Works kit. Got it for considerably less than the All Balls Racing MSRP.

FWIW, the Pivot Works bearings have no brand marking, only some numbers that don't seem to relate to anyone or anything. I assume they are made for Pivot Works by one of the suppliers named earlier, in a "private label" sort of way.

Things I still need to get:

---steering stem nut spanner/socket

---rotary tool/Dremel knockoff. I do have a 4.5" angle grinder, but it's too big for cutting the lower bearing race. I don't like my chances of cutting just the race, while not also damaging other stuff.

---means of pressing new bearing onto steering stem. I may try the "warm bearing, freeze stem" method this time.

@Wooshka if you were serious about loaning out the Park Tools cup remover & steering head wrench, let's discuss.
 

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2015 FJR-1300ESF
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711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #95 ·
Also any tips on doing the swap would be appreciated.

For example, is it possible to leave the forks & front wheel assembled, or should I plan on taking apart everything below the steering head?
 

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Everything below needs to come off. As for pressing in the new races to the steering stem.... the top race is easily done by using the old race and a hammer to knock it in.

The toughest part is pressing in the new race on the underside. After trying with a hammer and the old race I resorted to using a long threaded rod, some nuts and steel plates. Insert the rod from the top, I'll assemble what I used and post a pic tonight. Basically use a nut, the plate (was about 3 inches by 4 inches, then the old race centered on the new race, same for the top and bottom. Then as you crank on the nut the plates pull the old races onto the new ones thereby seating them.

DB PM me your mailing info. By buddy has the race removal tool and I'll have him ship it to you. (y)
 
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Discussion Starter · #97 ·
It sounds like you improvised a bearing press of sorts.

Driving in the new lower bearing race was indeed a tiresome process on the old Vstrom. Swinging a hammer from below = not the most funnest thing.

I like your improvised bearing-race-press idea. Not sure I'll be able to duplicate it, but will know more with the photos. PM incoming.
 

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Good pics in this thread...


And I like to work organized, even putting bolts in a baggie and labeling it. Placing things in the order they came off and such.

Gas Kitchen utensil Surgical instrument Eyewear Metal
 
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Discussion Starter · #99 ·
Likewise, and since I sold my Vstrom a couple months back I actually have the room in my garage to do this job.

I note that in that old thread, @Oldjeep says he cut his bearing race off the steering stem with a 4.5" angle grinder. Which is a tool I picked up yesterday, for a different project. Don't know if I am steady enough with it to do the same. TBD.

For driving the new outer bearing races into the frame, both upper and lower, I plan to again use an automotive-style bearing driver tool, borrowed from the AutoZone down the street. Can be used with a hammer, or your threaded rod-and-plates device, if it works the way I think it does.
 

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2007 FJR1300A
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I note that in that old thread, @Oldjeep says he cut his bearing race off the steering stem with a 4.5" angle grinder. Which is a tool I picked up yesterday, for a different project. Don't know if I am steady enough with it to do the same. TBD.
2 hands left hand on the stem, left thumb on the grinder guard. Right hand is just holding the tool/trigger. So if you are not comfortable with your thumb that close to the blade, find another way to do it. I also never wear gloves when doing stuff like that - too easy to get it caught if you slip, which is way worse than touching the blade most of the time.
 
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