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Old 04 November 2011, 18:08   #21
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Steve, I had an indespension roller coaster with "proper" taper bearings years ago & I had to change the bearings annually. I've had 2 SBS trailers with al-ko bearings & now change them every 2 years & that's only 'cos I'm paranoid. I've not had one fail yet & when I change them they are in decent nick & would probably do another year. One thing to watch out for is the actual bearing. The original Al-Ko "waterproof" bearings have a different & sturdier seal than pattern ones.
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Old 05 November 2011, 04:20   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pikey Dave View Post
Steve, I had an indespension roller coaster with "proper" taper bearings years ago & I had to change the bearings annually. I've had 2 SBS trailers with al-ko bearings & now change them every 2 years & that's only 'cos I'm paranoid. I've not had one fail yet & when I change them they are in decent nick & would probably do another year. One thing to watch out for is the actual bearing. The original Al-Ko "waterproof" bearings have a different & sturdier seal than pattern ones.
Yeah I am in my usual position of being a luddite and not liking this new fangled sealed bearing idea even though personal experience to date indicates no problems at all

Do the genuine waterproof bearings have "waterproof" on them or how do you tell? I expect the ones supplied with my trailer were genuine but I must have a look. I think I'm going to order a spare pair of hubs anyway and then when I need/want to change them I can just slap the new hubs on and overhaul the old ones at leisure. You can guarantee if you needed to do it in a hurry you'd bust something or be unable to get the bearing out... and if anything like this ever happened again I could be in the position of being out of action for a month or six week waiting for bits.
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Old 05 November 2011, 06:13   #23
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On the original bearings, the seal is bonded to the outer race & the inner race rotates against the seal. I bought some cheapo pattern bearings & the seal was bonded to the inner race & rotated against the outer race, if that all makes sense. The fit of the seal on the oem bearings was much tighter against the race. When I fit them into the hub I cover the inner end (where the circlip is) with copperslip to keep water & crud away from the seals. It's worked ok so far. When I remove them, the outer end under the dust cap is always pristine, so water isn't getting past the dust cap or through the bearing from the other end. I bought a cheapish "Clarke" 10 tonne press & it works a treat for popping the bearings in & out.
I've only been able to get the genuine bearings from SBS, other suppliers have either supplied aforementioned cheapos or not been able to guarantee that they are original.
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Old 05 November 2011, 06:53   #24
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Pikey Dave's right - you get what you pay for with bearings. You can get non-euro spec / class 2 bearings and whilst they're cheap (usually half the price of OE), they're cheap for a reason. It's yet to happen, but one day I'm convinced I'll change a set that will still have 'Coca-Cola' on them...

Some bearings will have the OE name on them - if you look at the pic I posted in #17, you'll see 'ALKO' lasered in to the bearing, bottom left, at about 7 o'clock. Look out for this and you should be ok.
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