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  1. #1
    > /dev/null 2&>1
    Reputation: Procter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012

    Please school me on bearing pullers vs presses vs extractors

    Hey homies

    So my immediate need is to replace pivot bearings on my asr5, but I'm thinking I should get a decent bearing toolkit which will serve me for my other bikes, including pivot bearings & hubs. Later I might need a press for BB's, although all my bikes are threaded BB right now so it's not a requirement, it's a nice-to-have. I see a few threads saying "just get this" but not a lot of background on when you'd use different types of presses/pullers and why. I wanna do this right, meaning, avoid having to go in with hammer & screwdriver, etc.

    My smallest bearing is currently a 8mm inner diameter '698', which is in the tight confines of a wishbone as shown in pic:

    I also need to swap larger bearings, for example this 6903 which has an inner diameter of about 17mm and is of course also in a tight space:

    Thirdly, I have a dw link on my firebird where 4 bearings are completely enclosed in the gold link shown:

    I probably have larger bearings on my DH rig too. So I need a kit that covers a good range.

    Q1) Looking at the wheels mfg site: I see both presses and extractors. What is the difference? Do I need both?

    Q2) I see a lot of recommendations to get a basic blind bearing puller. I assume this is because, even though these aren't blind holes (they are through cuts, not blind cuts) a blind puller will allow me to get the bearing out from the external facing side of the wishbone or lower pivot, or from the dw link, due to the tight confines. Is this true? If so will a blind bearing puller just help me extract? Or will I be able to use it to insert the new bearing as well?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    The Bubble Wrap Hysteria
    Reputation: mtnbiker4life's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    I have the wheels mfg bearing tools and they're really top notch but they're a bit spendy. I would suggest taking to a shop that has the correct tools if you do not have the cash to buy the tools or access to a machine shop to make the parts.


  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Since I'm cheap, I have different size/shape C clips (lodge against bearing), push that out with sockets against old headset cups (those nice thick steel headset units) on vice. Pop they go.

    Ones inside that gold link unit, I would use a variable size punch set and work my way around, from the other side.

    Putting everything back together does require some patience, make sure they go in straight. Push them in a little by on vice.

  4. #4
    Reputation: acer66's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    A little off topic but I need/want to pull my external bottom bracket bearings and while I have no problem to spend money on tools I wonder if anyone has some feedback on this cheaper tool from RWC?

    Enduro Bearing Puller from


  5. #5
    > /dev/null 2&>1
    Reputation: Procter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Hey there, so for tight cavities like inside a BB, I found that woodruff keys work really well. You can pick up a pack of assorted sizes from your local auto parts store for $5 bucks.

    List: Woodruff Key | O'Reilly Auto Parts

    They are just semi-circular metal pieces which are designed to be tapped into a notch to hold two sides of a driveshaft together.

    But, they are perfect for removing bearings too:
    1) Insert the woodruff key in past the bearing and then rotate it to brace it across the bearing so that the flat surface faces away from the bearing.
    2) Now you have a flat surface to tap on, which traverses the diameter of the bearing so that you can tap in the center of it.
    3) Get a 1/4th inch punch with a flat tip, and insert it form the other side
    4) Use some scrap wood to support the surfaces around the BB and try to immobilize the frame as much as possible. Or, having a vice helps because you can adjust the vice so that the BB shell is supported but the bearing can fit through the vice opening. This is the main challenge of this technique - if you can't adequately support the frame without applying pressure to chainstays, seat tub and down tube, you may want to skip this approach.
    5) Tap on the punch with a hammer to tap out the bearing

    Hope that helps

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