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Old 07-05-2005, 06:47 PM   #1
rbahr
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Default Lessons learned, or how I learned to love Wheel Bearings

Hi All,

This is a little lessons learned for those of you fast STi folks out there - you know who you are :-)

1) The car NEEDS an oil cooler - I saw 250+ deg f temps at the track without one, with an oil cooler the temps stay ~ 210-230 deg f

2) The car has tiny little wheel bearings - they are like our tires - they wear out and sometime pretty fast and can cause a mess when they do - treat them like your brakes, oil, tires - replace them every 1-2 seaons esp the front - unless you are one O them lucky folks who have a 2005 in which case ferget about it - you are all set!

3) The stock radiator is OK for stock power levels, but Accessport/ECUTEK/Pick you favorite EMS folks out ther who track, you need to think about a new radiator

How did I come about this wisdom - well lets see: I have run 2 events with the coolant boiling out as I drive, the last event was run on bad wheel bearings - let me tell you, the 7 hour drive home from WGI with a loud whump whump really sucked... - not to mention the lack of brakes etc...

More later as I continue to break er enjoy my car...

Ray (who now owns the wheel bearing replacement tools and spare wheel bearings)
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Old 07-05-2005, 06:54 PM   #2
alacrity024
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so what's different about the '05 wheelbearings?? as a former SVX owner i can appreciate the difficulty in dealing with wheel bearings
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Old 07-05-2005, 06:57 PM   #3
justbcuz
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larger wheel hub on the 05 STi
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Old 07-05-2005, 06:58 PM   #4
re92
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'05 has a bigger hub. Ray, I'll be visiting you when my wheel bearing dies

Raj
[Edit: Dammit, got beat to the response]
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Old 07-05-2005, 07:32 PM   #5
rbahr
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not to mention that the '05 folks can just go out and buy: http://www.subaru-sti.co.jp/e/GRN/pa.../sti05013.html

See ya soon Raj :-)

Ray
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Old 07-05-2005, 07:49 PM   #6
redobs
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That's puuuurty!!
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Old 07-05-2005, 08:31 PM   #7
AngryBlueRS
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbahr
1) The car NEEDS an oil cooler - I saw 250+ deg f temps at the track without one, with an oil cooler the temps stay ~ 210-230 deg f
Confirmed. I've seen 230F just Autoxing on a hot day. I'm sure on the track its far worse.

Also, I'm not sure everyone realizes that its a really bad idea to shut the car down at that temp as the turbo just fries the oil. I noticed quite a few folks at the last AutoX pulling into the pits and immeadiately shutting down and opening the hood. I know my car takes a good 5-10 minutes to drop below 220F after a fast run. Turbo timer or an oil temp gauge may be a worthy investment.

HTH,
C
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Old 07-05-2005, 09:05 PM   #8
formica
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There was a caller to a local Toronto 'complain about your bad experiences with cars' phone in show that I saw on the weekend who just got an STi and was complaining he had to let it idle to cool down - he said the dealer was ripping him off.
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Old 07-06-2005, 05:58 AM   #9
totoherbs
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbahr
not to mention that the '05 folks can just go out and buy: http://www.subaru-sti.co.jp/e/GRN/pa.../sti05013.html

See ya soon Raj :-)

Ray

Very nice!
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Old 07-06-2005, 08:59 AM   #10
jpmarotta
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbahr
Hi All,

3) The stock radiator is OK for stock power levels, but Accessport/ECUTEK/Pick you favorite EMS folks out ther who track, you need to think about a new radiator

Ray (who now owns the wheel bearing replacement tools and spare wheel bearings)
I hear you on the radiator Ray, got a Koyo coming this week.

What tools did you need to replace the bearings?

-Jason
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Old 07-06-2005, 11:06 AM   #11
rbahr
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Hi Jason,

I expect my Koyo radiator this Friday - you are welcome to do a radiator replacement thing at my place this weekend.

On the Wheel bearing front, I got a reprieve (this time) on replacing the fronts (both) - this was done for me.

I ordered the OTC Hubtamer Master Bearing Tool Set Hub Tamer Model 6490 and should get that in this week. I already have a press and various pullers, but this seems to solve the problem of removing the knuckle and needing to do an alignment...

For the 'Replacement using a press' a good write up is: http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show...0&page=1&pp=25

For the 'Replacement using the OTC tools' see: http://endwrench.com/current/Current6/03/WhBearRep.pdf

Ray
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Old 07-06-2005, 12:11 PM   #12
V6TurboTA
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You sure you havent hit anything to kill the wheel bearings?

You been hitting the curbs at the track?

~v6
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Old 07-06-2005, 12:14 PM   #13
Chromer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbahr
OTC Hubtamer Master Bearing Tool Set Hub Tamer Model 6490

Looks pretty slick. Pricy, but slick.
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Old 07-06-2005, 12:23 PM   #14
rbahr
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Hi V6,

My car has had one small off track excursion and it was only one side, but both front bearings were bad - it is a known fault with this car - esp with the high brake heat seen at the track.

Hi Chromer,

you can get it a bit cheaper on ebay, but then the dealer charges ~$300 per side - so 2 wheel bearings pays for the cost of the tools, and I like excuses to buy tools that I don't have :-)
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Old 07-06-2005, 12:29 PM   #15
V6TurboTA
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Yeah I bet the heat from the brakes does kick their ass, but any decent sized shock seems to damage the hell out of suby wheel bearings. I hit a small curb in my WRX and the wheel bearing went shortly after.

I bet your little 4x4 excursion had to do with your failures. May not have been the only cause, but I bet it helped.

Anyone got an idea of how much the upgraded group N ones cost?

~v6
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Old 07-06-2005, 12:30 PM   #16
Chromer
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Yeah. Can you do the rears with that kit? I go through a pair of rear bearings on my Forester about every 30,000 miles, and they're getting ready for yet another set. Not having to remove the hubs would be a nice change, I hate reassembling the *(%*$& parking brakes and the lower lateral bolt is always frozen no matter how much antisieze I slathered on it last time...
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Old 07-06-2005, 01:03 PM   #17
rbahr
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Hi V6,

My excursion was on one side - both were bad - I was running OEM shocks at the time... A lot of things affect the wear - the order IMHO is:

1) Heat from brakes
2) wrong ofset rims
3) stress due to R compound tires

I asked about the Group N parts, and the part has not be released to the general USA parts public - might be able to get them through speciliaty places with contacts in Japan

CHromer: The kit is supposed to allow front and rear most cars. The hubs and axels are removed, but the knuckles are left intact

Ray
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Old 07-06-2005, 01:21 PM   #18
V6TurboTA
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Interesting. I wonder how much those hubs will be if and when we can get them.
I wonder how much better they are too.

BTW what did you end up getting for an oil cooler?

~v6
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Old 07-06-2005, 01:32 PM   #19
Chromer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbahr
I asked about the Group N parts, and the part has not be released to the general USA parts public - might be able to get them through speciliaty places with contacts in Japan
Try a rally prep shop. Vermont Sportscar maybe?
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Old 07-06-2005, 03:01 PM   #20
rbahr
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I used a Mocol mounted behind one of the fog light holes with a sandwich plate and some stainless braid line, no thermostat, but with the fog light cover in place it is not a problem in the winter.

Mounting the radiator in the front is a bit of a problem with the AC radiator then the normal radiator - there is a lot of hot air moving through there...

The brake cooling is another problem - I am removing the backing plates which should help a bit and trying to duct air into the wheel area, I also installed some thin aluminum over the brake duct channels - bought the factory plastic pieces but never used them - that should also help a bit...

The hubs are a bigger problem for me - I have 3 sets of rims with the 100mm bolt hole pattern, (the new ones are the 114 mm variety) my shocks won't fit the new hub - another difference between the 2004 and the 2005 hub. I have been toying with the possibility of buying a set of these new hubs and machining the shock mounting point and re drilling for the 100 mm bolt hole pattern - but what I have needs to become a real problem - if I start replacing wheel bearings several times in a season I will look into doing this.

Ray

Last edited by rbahr; 07-06-2005 at 04:08 PM.
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Old 07-06-2005, 03:12 PM   #21
V6TurboTA
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How many track days do you do a year?

~v6
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Old 07-06-2005, 04:06 PM   #22
rbahr
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Last year I did ~20, year before that was ~15, this has been a slow year I have done 3 so far, and have 6 more in the next 3 weeks - 4 at wgi and 2 at LCMT. August will probably have another 4-6 and perhaps a few in September... The STi has ~25 days (3000 miles) on it

Ray
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Old 11-09-2005, 03:47 PM   #23
rbahr
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Hi All,

The little maintenance update horror show continues:

At this point I have ~50 track days on the car...

I just had the tranny done on my nickle because of 'enthusiastic driving' SOA's term. FWIW the dealer has treated me well and gave me a break on parts and labor. In addition I am on my 3rd pair of front wheel bearings...

I gotta say - check those front wheel bearings esp those folks runnning R compound tires. Also one of my rear axels is apperently twisted - got some new ones at home to install.

I NEED to do something about the brake ducting issue - things are running WAY to hot - esp when I am chasing the likes of Raj and Ryan around and dodging those BA Mustangs and Cameros...

Ray
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Old 11-09-2005, 04:13 PM   #24
jamesfacts
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Tranny done? What broke in yours? Fried the fluid, maybe?
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Old 11-09-2005, 05:11 PM   #25
rbahr
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Nope - 4th gear synchro got trashed - apperently there were a couple of other things - but that was the big item. Fluid was fine - I tried several - OEM, Redline, Swepco, Valvoline (which is the OEM I think)... I will be trying Motul next. Pretty much every track I run is a 4th, 5th, 6th gear track...

Ray
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