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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've concluded that I need to replace my head bearings (Front wheel vibration on heavy braking.) and looking at that job now.

I have the manual and it says the first nut goes to 45Nm then the lock nut to 90Nm. I am sure it doesn't 'need' that because I have already tightened up the nuts before, for slack, with a drift and hammer.

But, to apply 90Nm, to do it properly, I'm planning to bite that bullet and buy a tool to do the job.

£20 for a socket, or £10 for a long 30mm c spanner. I think 90Nm on just one detent of the nut maybe too much for it, seems to be an aluminium nut.

Sigh.

Why didn't they just use hex nuts? I'm looking to see if I can get 5mm thick M24x1.0 hex nuts for less than the tool! Is that wise? What is the point of having a castellated nut like that? If the idea is that you can adjust without removing the top boss, that's silly because then you can't apply 90Nm to tighten it, even with Suzuki's own tool?

Am I missing something here. Suzuki, why not give us hex nuts?
 

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I believe a regular 12pt 36mm socket works well.

(edited for future reference. It's a 12 pt not a 6 pt)
 
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Maybe on the crown nut, but the bearing thrust adjusters need a spanner. A crows foot spanner socket is a cheap way to get things done right.

The reason it's this type of nut is to provide the clamping force needed with minimum height. I just sanded 1mm off of each of mine to get the top clamp 2mm lower.
 

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You don’t actually need to spend that much. If you have a cheap tool place, just take the nut with you and buy one with a big enough diameter to cover the slots in the nut.

Take a hacksaw and cut slots in the socket deep enough to engage the nut securely. Grind out the rest to leave 2 or 4 “teeth” to engage the slots in the nut. Presto now you have a spanner socket and Bobs you’re uncle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks, well, I have ordered a long c spanner for £10, see how that works out. There are better tools to do the job, but trying to keep costs under control. If I feel that 90Nm is too much for it to take, then I just won't tighten it up that much, it did not seem a problem before (assuming that wasn't the cause of it being worn like this!?).

I seem to be spending more on tools than on parts!

I don't have much to criticise Suzuki design for, but why not a hex nut there, and why this?

Automotive tire Motor vehicle Material property Rim Bicycle part


There is loads of space there to get a wrench in, but they put the bolt heads on the 'inaccessible' side. Why would they go and do something dumb like that?

Anyway, I have been able to get a 6" long 12mm spanner in there, and that's enough leverage to crack those bolts loose. So I am struggling to see why there is any need to remove all the fairing, if I can just loosen that clamp and slide the struts out.

Am I missing something obvious? Why does the handbook to say to take the fairing off?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I am still toying with the idea of buying genuine Suzuki. Everyone is selling the taper bearings and I can't even get a ball bearing type in a 3rd party pattern part.

With an engineering hat on, I'm tempted to fit one Suzuki bearing at the top, for maximum precision of bar position, and one taper bearing at the bottom to handle loads.
 

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I tried this and was unsuccessful. Maybe a 38 would fit.
My bad. I used a 36mm 12 pt socket. Just checked it again on my bike and it fits.
 

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I am still toying with the idea of buying genuine Suzuki. Everyone is selling the taper bearings and I can't even get a ball bearing type in a 3rd party pattern part.

With an engineering hat on, I'm tempted to fit one Suzuki bearing at the top, for maximum precision of bar position, and one taper bearing at the bottom to handle loads.
Why wouldn't you want tapered bearings?

More surface area against the race compared to ball bearings. Its a better design.

Sent from my SM-G960W using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
My bad. I used a 36mm 12 pt socket. Just checked it again on my bike and it fits.
Ah that's the top nut, sure I use a regular 36 for that one. (edit .. with a cloth over it to stop it getting scratched)

My problem is the two castle nuts under the top head stock, the ones that tension up the steering yoke.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Why wouldn't you want tapered bearings?

More surface area against the race compared to ball bearings. Its a better design.

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It's not what Suzuki has designed, and I am assuming they know best. Keep the bike as close to the engineering intent as possible seems like a good idea to me. I'm thinking of even going back to the 016 tyres, as it was designed for those.

Why stick to Suzuki cup/ball bearings, two main reasons that I think may exist, not swearing to these as if I know because that's why I am pondering it, but they might not be very good reasons maybe I just try them. Firstly the bigger areas means more drag, the second is that they do not align the steering axis as well as balls in a cup, and slight mismatch, which includes clearance movements in a corner, mean the steering goes out. Therefore they need yet more tension in the axis and therefore even more drag on the steering.

Imagine there is a small angle offset, which will self-align better, flat conical bearings or balls in a cup?

But I agree that the extra surface area should help handle higher loads better, there are simply not any high loads on the top bearing. Hence thinking maybe conical on the bottom for load, and cup on the top for alignment. The one on the bottom should stay in alignment due to the load on it, the one on the top has virtually no load so a conical bearing will float out of alignment up to its clearance (reduced with higher nut/axis tension) whereas a ball can have clearance but stay central as it sits within a circular outer race.

I think you'd be right if you said I'm kidding myself that I'd be able to tell the difference.
 

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Suzuki went with what would work. Use the same advise for stock brakes, etc. The taper is an upgrade..... and a good one.
 
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