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Old 10 August 2012, 04:34   #1
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Bearings - 10 months old

Hi all,

Had a bit of rumbling on the trailer so decided to inspect the bearings that I changed last October. Was surprised they were pitted so soon. I guess the mileage I do to the South coast will require more frequent changes (250 mile round trip).

I would be interested in your views on the state of the bearing, I assume it will degrade rapidly once they start pitting, so it would be wise to change at this point?

Also chatting to a mechanic his view is that you should not pack bearings with grease, but most on this forum say the contrary?

I take it there is nothing I can really do to extend their life, I flush at the slipway on recovery if there is a hose, if not they have to wait until I get home?

Cheers,

Alex
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Old 10 August 2012, 04:46   #2
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Bearing savers work for me, they keep the grease under pressure and keep the water out. Always make sure you start with a quality bearing.
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Old 10 August 2012, 04:55   #3
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Bearing savers here too. I've had same bearings in for 4 years and no problems.
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Old 10 August 2012, 04:58   #4
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Thanks for the reply Kubcat, the trailer has bearing savers and that bearing was from Bradley.

The more I think about it the pitted bearing was on the off side and the grease was milky so it must not have had a great seal. The near side bearing was not as bad and the grease looked like new, so just goes to show you the affect salt has on bearings
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Old 10 August 2012, 06:26   #5
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Too much pressure on the grease/too much grease can force the inner seals out
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Old 10 August 2012, 07:00   #6
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I find if you pack them well with grease they will last for years, but if not they will not last 6 months!
I bought a new trailer 2 years ago & did not think much about it, thought I would use it for one season before I checked the bearings! 6 months old & the bearings where so bad I had to leave it down in the Hamble as I did not want to risk towing it home. Looks to me that it was assembled with nearly dry bearings, didnít have much in the way of grease in them at all!
Bought a new axle for anther trailer this year & before I fitted it stripped it down painted everything with Hammerite & put back together with well packed bearings.
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Old 10 August 2012, 08:54   #7
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Also chatting to a mechanic his view is that you should not pack bearings with grease
Really!! what a dipstick.. pack each bearing inside as well as out and grease in the the hub but as said not overpack so to push the seals out, your picture looks like there is water ingression and that will really shorten the life.
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Old 10 August 2012, 10:31   #8
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Thanks for the feedback and you guys are bang on. When I fitted the bearings last October I was told not to pack the bearings by the mechanic so they were well coated but not packed.

Yes there was water ingress on the off side and the picture is of the off side bearing the nearside had no water ingress and the bearings looked fine, however, I have changed both and this time will pack. It will be interesting to see how they fair in 10 months time, and if positive I will be teaching the mechanic on how to grease bearings
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Old 10 August 2012, 11:34   #9
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My Old Trailer had bearing that were 15 years old without issues.
Good grease and reguallar re-greasings. when I changed the axels i kept the old bearings are they were still ok. !!!
It was dragged all over england and Ireland.
so 10 months is a little off in my books.
I currently drag the old thing down to Poole/ Portsmouth and back.

reminds me I must check em :-)
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Old 10 August 2012, 11:56   #10
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Bearings hate salt water!

Pack them with Grease well and often and the seals on back of those hubs may as well not be there because 9/10 they don't keep water out.
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Old 10 August 2012, 12:32   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matt h View Post
Really!! what a dipstick.. pack each bearing inside as well as out and grease in the the hub but as said not overpack so to push the seals out, your picture looks like there is water ingression and that will really shorten the life.
I've heard "don't pack bearings with grease" too from more than one place, from a trailer centre as well. Every time I've heard it it's been from someone who's got no clue about boat trailers being immersed in salt water.
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Old 10 August 2012, 12:39   #12
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Granted a set of bearings should do more than 10 month but I do believe that the aftermarket bearings available today are of poor quality and never seem to last.

Just my observations.
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Old 10 August 2012, 12:47   #13
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Bearing Buddies or whatever the equivalent is in your country, are what I would consider a requirement, unless they are oil bath hubs. A long time ago someone taught me if you are going to trailer really far, either let the hubs cool down, or bring a grease gun along and give it a couple pumps to set up for positive pressure as once the warm hub hits the cold water it can suck water right in. 125 miles is far enough carrying a grease gun would probably be worth while.
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Old 10 August 2012, 15:22   #14
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if you are going to trailer really far, either let the hubs cool down, or bring a grease gun along and give it a couple pumps to set up for positive pressure as once the warm hub hits the cold water it can suck water right in. 125 miles is far enough
Correct .. actually less miles just as much

The thing is that if you are using bearing savers, allow for some grease to come out on the inside of your hub, this is normal and good , your bearings will last for a good few years.

The advice re no grease input, may well be because some manufacturers like alko make sealed for life units. These worked ok for me for 3 years on the trot actually with regular immersions but not when hot, where other alkos didnt

They have to rely on polythene seals rotating on steel shells ,, and theres no chance in hell they are sealed for life ... draw you own conclusions

Oh and dont use moly grease ..
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Old 10 August 2012, 15:56   #15
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Akso don't forget that you run down to the sea from your home which is a long way during that trip the bearings get good and warm and so does the grease you then stick into a large mass of much colder water. very fast cooling\contraction cycle which washed away some grease.

Bearing Buddies are great but you gotta keep on top of them,

What sort of grease do you use?

One is very partial to this stuff, but don't get sidetracked when you type Aqua lube into Google

Aqua Lube - High Performance Marine Lubricant Oi tink it might have been rebranded as Aqua shield

I Think Muz nipped in whilst I was typing so suffice It to say I wholeheartedly agree with the above two posts
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Old 11 August 2012, 03:45   #16
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I have been using this stuff

- Banbury Trailers

By the time I have parked up, taken off the straps, loaded the boat up, everyone has had a toilet stop and put their boating gear on sorted slipway access at least 40mins has passed so the drums or always nice and cool before they get dipped.
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