Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: daugela's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    425

    Greasing my pivot bearings Reign 08

    I typically do most my own repairs and thought about greasing my pivot bearings - as suggested by another. I've got about 10 months on the bike with a fair amount of miles.

    I live in Arizona and ride often in dusty conditions. No rain or mud.

    It looks simple - just unscrew the bearings with the allen wrench. Am I missing anything or need to beware before taking them out?

  2. #2
    May contain nuts
    Reputation: Haggis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,540
    Quote Originally Posted by daugela
    It looks simple - just unscrew the bearings with the allen wrench. Am I missing anything or need to beware before taking them out?
    That's just the pivot bolt. The cartridge bearing is pressed into the frame or rocker. You can removed the bolt and check the bearing inner race for any play. (Don't worry about a bit of indexed 'notchiness' unless it's really bad). The outer seal can be carefully pried off with a fine pointed 'picking tool' and I find a small syringe or mini-grease gun best to repack the bearing. (I wouldn't worry about washing out the old grease. If the bearing balls are rusted it's best to replace the bearing). Replace the seal and you're good to go. Worthwhile doing this on new bearings too - usually they have sod-all grease in them, unless they are Enduro's which come packed with the creamy goodness that is Rock n' Roll bearing grease...

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: daugela's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    425
    Quote Originally Posted by Haggis
    That's just the pivot bolt. The cartridge bearing is pressed into the frame or rocker. You can removed the bolt and check the bearing inner race for any play. (Don't worry about a bit of indexed 'notchiness' unless it's really bad). The outer seal can be carefully pried off with a fine pointed 'picking tool' and I find a small syringe or mini-grease gun best to repack the bearing. (I wouldn't worry about washing out the old grease. If the bearing balls are rusted it's best to replace the bearing). Replace the seal and you're good to go. Worthwhile doing this on new bearings too - usually they have sod-all grease in them, unless they are Enduro's which come packed with the creamy goodness that is Rock n' Roll bearing grease...
    You actually pry away the outer seal and add grease? I could see doing that with a large sealed bearing but on a bike, it's pretty small. Thanks for the info anyway. Took out the pivot bolts and examined the inner race washer and such. Still looking and feeling good.

    Thanks

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    46

    DYI pivot service

    Folks,
    I just and I mean just built a Trance X. I have been riding a Trance or a Reign for the past 2.5 years and have some experience with the link bearings. There is some carping over these pivots, but as a DYIer for all my life with everything from boats and cars to motorcycles and now bicycles, it's my opinion that the maintenance required by the suspension is about exactly what I expected. At least for my use and riding frequency.

    I ride about once a week and almost never in the wet (fair weather guy). My BB and lower links don't get doused in creek crossings and such. I also learned after the first round of bearings in the original Trance, that you can indeed wash a bike too much.

    Anyway, to the point. The link bearings can be cleaned and greased in the respective housing. they don't HAVE to be removed. Doesn't matter if it's the link, the swingarm or rocker. Take the point of a razor blade and insert it under the inner lip of the inner diameter of the seal and pop/lever it out. It may bend but guess what? It will bend right back. You only have to remove one side, use electrical cleaner, brake cleaner, carb cleaner with a nozzle and holding a rag to shield yourself, squirt away. Do this a couple of times, spinning the bearings in between rinse cycles. Depending on your choice of cleaning fluid the drying time may be 10 seconds or 1 minute or so. Either way, when the bearing is dry, simply reapply the grease of your choice, then use your fingers to press the seal back in place. Works like a champ and will keep the rear end like new.

    I found I needed to do this every 9 months to a year in order to keep the bearings working. Don't think you can unbolt the shock and feel the swingarm movement to tell if the bearings are in need of attention. You can't. By the time you can feel the bearing going bad, it's GONE.

    Finally, my new Trance X was built brand new from a frameset and the bearings were nearly dry. They had just enough grease in them so that the supplier could tell Giant they were pre-greased. They wouldn't have lasted 90 days. All you guys out there riding away, take notice, the suspension only works as long as the bearings are in good shape.

    Good luck,

    Oldnotdead

  5. #5
    Living Ghetto Fabulous!
    Reputation: Uncle Cliffy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    3,747
    Quote Originally Posted by Haggis
    unless they are Enduro's which come packed with the creamy goodness that is Rock n' Roll bearing grease...
    I had Enduro's on my Ventana Cuervo and whatever that grease was; it sucked azz... It just oozed out for the first few months and when I went to Whistler (wet) I couldn't figure out why my main pivot kept coming loose... Well, it had rusted bearings. Solid. No movement.

    So I went to ask the maintenance manager at the print shop I worked at to order me some INA bearings to replace my destroyed ones. He looked at my old ones and left them in an industrial solvent over night to free em' up. They came out good as new. He then introduced me to Shaeffer's Red Moly synthetic waterproof grease to re-pack my old bearings. What a difference! I can't believe how good that stuff works. I now use it for everything.
    Quote Originally Posted by kidwoo
    The internet sounds like a tough place to ride.

  6. #6
    May contain nuts
    Reputation: Haggis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,540
    Quote Originally Posted by oldn0tded
    Folks,
    I just and I mean just built a Trance X. I have been riding a Trance or a Reign for the past 2.5 years and have some experience with the link bearings. There is some carping over these pivots, but as a DYIer for all my life with everything from boats and cars to motorcycles and now bicycles, it's my opinion that the maintenance required by the suspension is about exactly what I expected. At least for my use and riding frequency.

    I ride about once a week and almost never in the wet (fair weather guy). My BB and lower links don't get doused in creek crossings and such. I also learned after the first round of bearings in the original Trance, that you can indeed wash a bike too much.

    Anyway, to the point. The link bearings can be cleaned and greased in the respective housing. they don't HAVE to be removed. Doesn't matter if it's the link, the swingarm or rocker. Take the point of a razor blade and insert it under the inner lip of the inner diameter of the seal and pop/lever it out. It may bend but guess what? It will bend right back. You only have to remove one side, use electrical cleaner, brake cleaner, carb cleaner with a nozzle and holding a rag to shield yourself, squirt away. Do this a couple of times, spinning the bearings in between rinse cycles. Depending on your choice of cleaning fluid the drying time may be 10 seconds or 1 minute or so. Either way, when the bearing is dry, simply reapply the grease of your choice, then use your fingers to press the seal back in place. Works like a champ and will keep the rear end like new.

    I found I needed to do this every 9 months to a year in order to keep the bearings working. Don't think you can unbolt the shock and feel the swingarm movement to tell if the bearings are in need of attention. You can't. By the time you can feel the bearing going bad, it's GONE.

    Finally, my new Trance X was built brand new from a frameset and the bearings were nearly dry. They had just enough grease in them so that the supplier could tell Giant they were pre-greased. They wouldn't have lasted 90 days. All you guys out there riding away, take notice, the suspension only works as long as the bearings are in good shape.

    Good luck,

    Oldnotdead
    Yep, that's my experience also. A friend bought an 06 Reign shortly after I got mine. I repacked my bearings when new, he didn't. His rocker bearings collapsed and ovalised the frame, mine didn't.
    I'm still running the same bearings aside from the two top rocker ones... Aside from benefiting from the lubrication, repacking helps keep water out.

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation: daugela's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    425
    Quote Originally Posted by oldn0tded
    Folks,
    I just and I mean just built a Trance X. I have been riding a Trance or a Reign for the past 2.5 years and have some experience with the link bearings. There is some carping over these pivots, but as a DYIer for all my life with everything from boats and cars to motorcycles and now bicycles, it's my opinion that the maintenance required by the suspension is about exactly what I expected. At least for my use and riding frequency.

    I ride about once a week and almost never in the wet (fair weather guy). My BB and lower links don't get doused in creek crossings and such. I also learned after the first round of bearings in the original Trance, that you can indeed wash a bike too much.

    Anyway, to the point. The link bearings can be cleaned and greased in the respective housing. they don't HAVE to be removed. Doesn't matter if it's the link, the swingarm or rocker. Take the point of a razor blade and insert it under the inner lip of the inner diameter of the seal and pop/lever it out. It may bend but guess what? It will bend right back. You only have to remove one side, use electrical cleaner, brake cleaner, carb cleaner with a nozzle and holding a rag to shield yourself, squirt away. Do this a couple of times, spinning the bearings in between rinse cycles. Depending on your choice of cleaning fluid the drying time may be 10 seconds or 1 minute or so. Either way, when the bearing is dry, simply reapply the grease of your choice, then use your fingers to press the seal back in place. Works like a champ and will keep the rear end like new.

    I found I needed to do this every 9 months to a year in order to keep the bearings working. Don't think you can unbolt the shock and feel the swingarm movement to tell if the bearings are in need of attention. You can't. By the time you can feel the bearing going bad, it's GONE.

    Finally, my new Trance X was built brand new from a frameset and the bearings were nearly dry. They had just enough grease in them so that the supplier could tell Giant they were pre-greased. They wouldn't have lasted 90 days. All you guys out there riding away, take notice, the suspension only works as long as the bearings are in good shape.

    Good luck,

    Oldnotdead
    Great post - wealth of info.

    Before I tackle this project next weekend, I want to make sure I understand you correctly on the procedure. The seal remains in the housing. By inserting the razor edge, you will bend the inner part o the seal, but it will bend back? My inner part is a blue plastic. Came stock on the Reign. At least I think it's plastic. Will this bend back? Also, will it stay bent open ass you put grease in it or do you have to hold it open?

    Must you clean it out? Naturally if it's clean, just adding grease shuold be suffice.

    thanks

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    46

    Clarification

    Oooops,
    I apologize for not being clear.

    No you will not be trying to squeeze the grease past the seal. You will pop the seal out. The seal is a brass washer with silicone molded in the shape you see. You will be using the razor blade to pry the seal from the retaining grooves in the bearing's inner and outer races. Normally the seal gets distorted in the prying out process. Since the seal's foundation is the brass washer, it is easily bent back into shape. It needs to be flat, but due to the flexible nature of the silicone it doesn't have to be perfect. Pretty close is good enough. I put the seal between two pieces of wood and use a hammer. I will caution, with care you can pop the seal out without damaging it. However, if you're careless with the razor blade you can cut the seal. I use the razor blade because the very shape point allows me to get under the lip of the seal. If you're nervous about using a blade, anything with a really sharp point can be subsituted. A fine sewing needle for example.

    The blue color is the new improved bearing Giant started using after issues showed up with the original bearings. The bearing is different (more little balls and no cage) and it uses a better quality silicone for the seal.

    Old not Dead

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: daugela's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    425
    Quote Originally Posted by oldn0tded
    Oooops,
    I apologize for not being clear.

    No you will not be trying to squeeze the grease past the seal. You will pop the seal out. The seal is a brass washer with silicone molded in the shape you see. You will be using the razor blade to pry the seal from the retaining grooves in the bearing's inner and outer races. Normally the seal gets distorted in the prying out process. Since the seal's foundation is the brass washer, it is easily bent back into shape. It needs to be flat, but due to the flexible nature of the silicone it doesn't have to be perfect. Pretty close is good enough. I put the seal between two pieces of wood and use a hammer. I will caution, with care you can pop the seal out without damaging it. However, if you're careless with the razor blade you can cut the seal. I use the razor blade because the very shape point allows me to get under the lip of the seal. If you're nervous about using a blade, anything with a really sharp point can be subsituted. A fine sewing needle for example.

    The blue color is the new improved bearing Giant started using after issues showed up with the original bearings. The bearing is different (more little balls and no cage) and it uses a better quality silicone for the seal.

    Old not Dead
    Knowing my bearings are the new style, I wonder if your method would still work?

    I picked up the lastet MBAction magazine and read about manufacturers tips. Giant recommends re-greasing all bearings and pivots. It would be nice if they could outline a procedure in a manual. thanks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •