I installed a better set of front wheels on my 24 Touring this weekend and, in the process discovered the screw-on outer bearings (wasn't expecting that).
They seemed to be in decent shape so I cleaned them with acetone, then repacked them with new wheel bearing grease and reinstalled.
Now I have a couple questions:
First...is there a specific wrench made for grabbing the little grooves on these bearings? I simply used an open-end wrench and it worked fine, but it'd be cool to have the tool, if such a thing exists.
Second...how snug should the screw-on bearings be? With modern, slip-on bearings, I was taught to snug them up so that the wheel would spin, but not completely freely. In other words, if you had the rim and tire installed and gave it a good spin, it would turn a revolution or two but some degree of pre-load would cause it to stop fairly quickly. Is this the accepted practice with these screw-on bearings?
The Ford stamped hubcap wrench fits the jam nut and bearing as well as the plugs in the oil pan and differential.
Lore from my grandfather who was a Model T owner and an experienced mechanic on all sorts of machinery in that era, with the bearing run up where it seats, spin the wheel and tighten the bearing bringing the wheel to a stop, then back off a little less than 1/4 turn.
Others will disagree or post their methods.
The Ford hub cap wrench has the hole for the front bearings. I adjust mine just a little bit looser then yours.
I appreciate the info.
I have the hub cap wrench. Guess I should've put two and two together since I had it out already.
Sounds like I may have my bearings just a bit too tight according to yall's practices.
I use the same method that Rich B. described.
First: Wrench #1349. The biggest hole is for the hub cap and the one next to it is for the bearing. The most common Ford wrench. Don't pay over $3 unless it's an exceptionally nice one.
Second: Yes. Just a slight drag. Maybe more than two revolutions, but some pre-load.
Thanks again for the responses. Yall are awesome.
That wrench was the first T specific tool I bought after I bought the car. I wondered what the other holes were for...now I know.
In order (from left to right...looking at Steve's photo) - hub cap - wheel bearing - oil pan plug - differential plug. Is that correct? Is there anything else?
Also the rear wheel nut. That's why this wrench often has mashed sides from people whacking it with a hammer to loosen the nut.
It also fits the oil plugs in the engine crankcase and the rear axle (for those cars with the hex plugs).
Don, I was taught that it is better to have the bearing a little on the loose side of optimum rather than with some load. Accordingly, I set mine so that I can feel the slightest play when pulling on the top of the wheel.
Two things to watch when setting them. Checking for play without the locking nut snugged up will lead to the bearings being too tight when the nut is tightened.
Secondly, when checking for play by wobbling the wheel, make sure any play you detect is not movement on the kingpins/bushes. A wooden wedge between the axle and the spindle will take this out.
Hope this helps.
Allan from down under.
I was surprised to see that, on this car, the king pins are quite tight.
Based on what you and the others have said, Iíll go back and readjust the bearings this weekend.
And taught right Allan,
A slight loose bearing will do thousands of miles but a slight to much pre-load and you only get around the block!
Just so someone searching in the future doesn't take this as a one-size-fits-all tutorial, the above described procedure is for tapered roller bearings. Ball bearings should not be set up loose.
Just to add to that Walter, no pre-load either on the ball bearing type, wheel to spin freely,(Ford service) hand tight works fine on both types.
As Allan has stated, back off for a slight play then the lock nut when done up will eliminate that play, all should spin freely, no feel of pre-load.
Not loaded so as to prevent them from spinning, but not erring on the side of loose, either. My Ford Service "black bible" explains as you describe, but it also doesn't show early enough to detail ball bearings. The description given in Paragraph 66 that points to an illustration shows a tapered roller. Ball bearings are not as forgiving about being set up loose as people tend to do with tapered rollers.
And more importantly, left hand threaded bearing on the right hand side of the vehicle!
I do mine like Allan Bennett. Just a hair loose, especially on bearings that have already been run in, like in the case of just repacking your existing bearings.
I have always been taught to have just a bit of preload on Timken type tapered bearings, from cars to Caterpillar wheel type scrapers. As for our T's, set the threaded bearing just a bit loose, then tighten the locknut and see what you have. The locknut will always tighten the bearing a bit, it sometimes takes a bit of trial and error to get the desired results. I do think the ball bearings should have some preload too, maybe not as much as a tapered bearing though. If you can wiggle any wheel bearing, it's too loose. JMHO Dave
As with many of the wrench's Henry provided the length of the wrench might determine the slight preload needed? Too tight and you run the risk of burneling the ball's roller's and races.Bud.