Thursday, September 6, 2012

Steering head race

As my "new" 1981 GPz550  is 31 years old, I am going through it and checking all the "running gear". This is the upper steering head race. You can just see a little wear. I did buy replacement needle bearings but I decided this little wear was OK, as replacing the head races is a real pain. I've done it a couple times on other bikes... with dubious results for bearings that weren't to bad to begin with.  Also, banging out the head races with the bike on the rear stand and a block under the engine is fraught with peril! And another issue is that if the height of the new tapered roller bearings is different than the old bearings then the headlamp brackets that fit just perfectly between the triple clamps might be the wrong height.

So I just cleaned, installed new balls with fresh grease.

And then of course, after the forks and bars are back on, I could still feel a little play and had to disassemble twice and tighten the bearings a bit more to get rid of the play. It seems this is always true every bike I do this on!

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