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Old 04-03-2018, 09:56 AM   #1
joea99
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Default 97 legacy rear wheel bearings. Knuckle condition.

So, my son and a friend replace the rear wheel bearing on a 97 legacy and they were shot in under 20 miles.

I kinda took over and pressed out the old (new shot) bearings.

Cleaning up the "bore" to press in new bearings, noticed what appear to be indications the pressed them in too tight. See pics. Oops, seems I can't add them.

Any way there are marks that look like rollers indentations, but the "seat" area for the bearing outer race seems undamaged. Should I chance re-using them?
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Old 04-03-2018, 10:17 AM   #2
Charlie-III
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Hmmm.....likely the same type knuckle as my 98 Legacy and our 99 Impreza. Cast iron with a pocket on the back for the bearing and a retaining snap ring.

No real way to press the bearing in too far if it is correct.
Trick is, put the new bearing in the freezer a few hours, then, warm up the knuckle with a propane torch.
Thin smear of grease in the pocket, get bearing, drop in, use a block of wood against the outer race and tap it in. For the last bit, you can use the old outer race to drive the new bearing in the last 1/4" or so for the snap ring.

If they had cocked the "new bearing" when pressing in, that may leave marks. File, emery cloth, etc. to smooth out high spots is good. Just enough to get rid of marks that would make the bearing tight in the bore.

It's possible they damaged the bearing during install, better guess is they got the axle nut torque wrong. Too tight or too loose can waste a bearing quickly.
I don't have a manual handy, but 145ftlbs for the nut? Double check that.
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Old 04-03-2018, 10:29 AM   #3
joea99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlie-III View Post
Hmmm.....likely the same type knuckle as my 98 Legacy and our 99 Impreza. Cast iron with a pocket on the back for the bearing and a retaining snap ring.

No real way to press the bearing in too far if it is correct.
Trick is, put the new bearing in the freezer a few hours, then, warm up the knuckle with a propane torch.
Thin smear of grease in the pocket, get bearing, drop in, use a block of wood against the outer race and tap it in. For the last bit, you can use the old outer race to drive the new bearing in the last 1/4" or so for the snap ring.

If they had cocked the "new bearing" when pressing in, that may leave marks. File, emery cloth, etc. to smooth out high spots is good. Just enough to get rid of marks that would make the bearing tight in the bore.

It's possible they damaged the bearing during install, better guess is they got the axle nut torque wrong. Too tight or too loose can waste a bearing quickly.
I don't have a manual handy, but 145ftlbs for the nut? Double check that.
So, those "ripples" that I see should not be a problem? As I think about it, as long as there is enough "ridge" to stop the bearing when it is (gently) pressed in, those marks should not be a problem. I guess? I sure wish I was allowed to post pictures. I do not see the "album" feature the FAQ calls out.
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Old 04-03-2018, 01:20 PM   #4
Charlie-III
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To post pictures on a lot of sites, host them somewhere like Imgur. Then, grab the photo link and use the "insert image URL" button when doing your post. The button is a box, mostly yellow with a hill on the bottom edge.

As to ripples.....who knows. Maybe the boring tool chattered a bit when the knuckle was first made.

I have yet to need a press to assemble, heat the knuckle, freeze the bearing, mild hits with a hammer.
Done deal.
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Old 04-03-2018, 01:27 PM   #5
joea99
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Still having some issues posting a link.

http://tinyurl.com/y76rkhk2

Last edited by joea99; 04-03-2018 at 01:37 PM.
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Old 04-03-2018, 01:32 PM   #6
Charlie-III
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joea99 View Post
Here ya go. [url="https://imgur.com/a/YXSVt"/URL]
Kinky no worky......

Let us try this.......

Nope didn't work........
I pasted this...... https://m.imgur.com/a/YXSVt into Google and saw your picture.

Yep, tried removing the "s" from https and still no go.

You talking the squarish notches at the bottom of the bore? Not likely something worth worrying about for the bearing support.
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Old 04-03-2018, 01:43 PM   #7
joea99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlie-III View Post
Kinky no worky......

Let us try this.......

Nope didn't work........
I pasted this...... https://m.imgur.com/a/YXSVt into Google and saw your picture.

Yep, tried removing the "s" from https and still no go.

You talking the squarish notches at the bottom of the bore? Not likely something worth worrying about for the bearing support.
I guess that was my bad. I was expecting the picture to show and not just a link, so I kept messing with it.

Anyway I added a picture viewed from the other side. What do ya think?
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Old 04-04-2018, 08:46 AM   #8
Charlie-III
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Silver Sleeper BK, 5MT

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Hmmm.....not sure what made the marks. Agree it looks like ball bearing marks.

If the bearing pocket looks good and the seal pockets look good, clean it, heat it and assemble with a frozen bearing.
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Old 04-04-2018, 09:08 AM   #9
joea99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlie-III View Post
Hmmm.....not sure what made the marks. Agree it looks like ball bearing marks.

If the bearing pocket looks good and the seal pockets look good, clean it, heat it and assemble with a frozen bearing.
Well, not sure about the inside inner seal area, but it might be OK. I am also not sure the "seat" for the bearing, that limits how far in it will go, was not mashed a bit as well. I am not concerned about driving it in too far as I can proceed slowly and have the snap ring groove as a guide, but with the bearing "walking" later on or when torquing down the axle nut. I may see if I can get a caliper in there to measure.

Any good parts yards by you? I am only about an hour or so north of you, by zip code?
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Old 04-04-2018, 02:14 PM   #10
Charlie-III
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I will say, sounds like a non issue, just do the bearing swap.

Likely best "local junkyard" is Hazelton, PA. Right by rt80/380/84.

You want to travel? PM me, come down, we can check and do the install. I am around a lot.
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Old 04-16-2018, 04:36 PM   #11
joea99
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So, Driver side done and got around right side. Turns out the outboard axle surface is grooved and otherwise groady from corrosion I guess. So, a new one will be on order soon.

Also the long bolt will not rotate or come out. I gather the only solution is to cut it and press it out, install new bolt and bushing?

Now, to the meat. I did press in the new bearing, no problem. Installed the seals close to bearing, no problem. Installed "backwards" one but it can pop back out with finger pressure, as if it is too small or . . . Any way it is a Timken. Used the same one on the other side and did not notice this problem. Can I just RTV or otherwise seal it in, being careful not to get dooky in the bearing, or will it always want to "spin". Or, am I worried about nothing?
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Old 04-16-2018, 04:44 PM   #12
Charlie-III
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Long bolt.......bottom of knuckle parallel with the front/rear of the car?
Yep, PITA.

I usually get it by breaking the nut loose, scrape the bolt as far as I can, heat the knuckle where the bolt goes through, apply Kroil or similar and let soak.

I have found an air chisel with a round ram in it can move the bolt. Usually it is stuck in the lateral link bushings.
It's about $25 from a dealer.

Worst case, cut off the bolt and then press or drill he pieces out. We just did one on my son's car a few weeks ago.

Seal, should not move. Double check the PN on the seal to the box, may have been swapped. If it's correct, then a few dabs of RTV and glue it in.
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Old 04-16-2018, 05:17 PM   #13
joea99
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Yep, that's where it is stuck in the rear bushing. Soaking it well with Kroil but no luck. I soaked it the other day with Break Free CLP which as worked some placed Kroil did not. Letting it sit for a day or two like that, as it is pretty wet outside now.

It's the correct seal, same as other side. I may order National and try that. I greased the seal and the cavity as I usually do when installing seals, so it will be tedious cleaning it well enough for RTV to hold. But maybe just cleaning the seal well will be enough.

Also, opinions on the condition of the spindle (hub ?) I pressed off?
https://imgur.com/a/SFa4g

I can feel the marks but they don't seem too deep, a fingernail will catch on a few ridges, but I believe I can smooth them out, at least.
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Old 04-17-2018, 09:42 AM   #14
Charlie-III
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Considering the hub shaft is supported on the inside by the axle and on the outside by the bearing inner race, I would just knock off the high spots and call it good.
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Old 04-17-2018, 01:43 PM   #15
joea99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlie-III View Post

I have found an air chisel with a round ram in it can move the bolt. Usually it is stuck in the lateral link bushings.
It's about $25 from a dealer.
You manage to get the bolt free that way, and it is re-usable? Hammering on the (protected) threaded end?
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Old 04-17-2018, 02:04 PM   #16
Charlie-III
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joea99 View Post
You manage to get the bolt free that way, and it is re-usable? Hammering on the (protected) threaded end?
Sometimes. It can help to leave the nut about 1/2 way on so it chases the threads when removed.
The bolt normally sticks out beyond the nut. Since it's "just a nut" (not a nylon insert or similar) you don't need much sticking out past the nut.
Having the bolt stuck in the knuckle is "easy" to resolve. Having it stuck in the center metal sleeve of the rubber bushings is a PITA.

Yes, I have had to cut the bolt into multiple pieces to remove the knuckle, then drill out the lateral links, remove bits from knuckle, etc.


Last one was my son's car. I stated how to do it and provided tools. Went back inside and said, "ask questions if they come up".
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Old 04-17-2018, 02:21 PM   #17
joea99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlie-III View Post
Having it stuck in the center metal sleeve of the rubber bushings is a PITA.

That's where it is stuck. Too much flex in the rubber to get much force differential between sleeve and bolt. I'm trying to keep costs down, but think this one may be a lost cause.
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Old 04-17-2018, 02:25 PM   #18
joea99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joea99 View Post
That's where it is stuck. Too much flex in the rubber to get much force differential between sleeve and bolt. I'm trying to keep costs down, but think this one may be a lost cause.
I'm a stubborn so and so, but one must know when to give it up. I started out to work on the bolt again and, it's sleeting outside.

It's toasty warm inside, and Amazon and Ebay are a click away . . . it's only money . . .
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Old 04-17-2018, 04:59 PM   #19
Charlie-III
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Dude, I am a "cheap SOB..", but even I give up at some point.
Most of my work is in the driveway, even in winter. Thus providing my son with tools and guidance.
He can get cold (his car), my broken ankle and back (twice) means I like it warm and dry working outside.
I can work from home, I don't have to commute usually.

Just saying what I have done, you decide........
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