Wheel bearing upgrade


Joel Shields

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I do hate packing bearings^ use to do my 84 Caprice 1 a year then I got a Thunderbird and never had a wheel bearing issue. And I beat the crap out of the Thunderbird. This ranger however needs to be repacked twice a year or more. A friend of mine suggested using the 4x4 spindle says it has the same geometry.
 


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sgtsandman

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Something isn't right then. Even though the owner's manual recommends doing a bearing regrease about that often in RWD Rangers, they rarely ever really need it anywhere near that much. What brand of bearings are you using?
 

bobbywalter

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I do hate packing bearings^ use to do my 84 Caprice 1 a year then I got a Thunderbird and never had a wheel bearing issue. And I beat the crap out of the Thunderbird. This ranger however needs to be repacked twice a year or more. A friend of mine suggested using the 4x4 spindle says it has the same geometry.
For a 99?

The 4x4 and 2wd edge have a cartridge.

You drive a 100k a year? Drive across a river daily? Or do you just run overloaded?

Otherwise....
Packing 2 times a year on a 2wd ranger is about 4 times more per year then you have to.
 

bobbywalter

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And yeah....I know that don't add up.
 

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So friggin big!
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Are you installing the spindle nut with a 3/4" breaker bar? :icon_confused: you know it's only torqued to 12 INCH pounds right? Something definitely wrong.

I've done my wheel bearings 3 times in 10 years, and not even because they needed it...
 
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Bird76Mojo

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The pressed in sealed bearings you are looking for can last as long as tapered roller bearings but you have to buy quality bearings (not parts super store bearing like AutoZone or Pep Boys), they have to be installed with a press and the proper bearing plate, and a few maintenance "secret" tips for best results. BUT the expense of doing the conversion so you can use such bearings is just not plain worth it. I'll take tapered roller bearings over a pressed in bearing any day. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.
That's not even remotely true. Tapered bearings are designed to carry and spread/centralize the load on them. Standard radial bearings were NEVER designed to resist or carry an axial load. They're fine for a rear axle but far less than ideal for an axle that turns left to right and has to resist side-loads when cornering.
 

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I do hate packing bearings^ use to do my 84 Caprice 1 a year then I got a Thunderbird and never had a wheel bearing issue. And I beat the crap out of the Thunderbird. This ranger however needs to be repacked twice a year or more. A friend of mine suggested using the 4x4 spindle says it has the same geometry.
almost,,,,

the top hole for the upper ball joint is larger for the 4WD knuckle. it only accepts the 4WD upper control arm,,,which is longer and pushes the top of the wheel way out past alignment adjusting limits.
a custom control arm could fix that.
 

pjtoledo

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That's not even remotely true. Tapered bearings are designed to carry and spread/centralize the load on them. Standard radial bearings were NEVER designed to resist or carry an axial load. They're fine for a rear axle but far less than ideal for an axle that turns left to right and has to resist side-loads when cornering.

may I suggest you look at a cut-away diagram of a typical sealed front wheel bearing. they definitely are designed for side & axial loads.

Ford Taurus' used a dual roller cartridge front bearing thru 1996, not sure what newer ones are.
 

sgtsandman

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That's not even remotely true. Tapered bearings are designed to carry and spread/centralize the load on them. Standard radial bearings were NEVER designed to resist or carry an axial load. They're fine for a rear axle but far less than ideal for an axle that turns left to right and has to resist side-loads when cornering.
My Honda CR-Vs had them. The first one had about 160,000 miles on it and never changed a bearing. My second one only had the front left changed because it had become one with the CV shaft that needed replaced. That's when I found out about aftermarket bearings and replaced it yet again with a Honda bearing. At 20 years old, none of the other bearings have yet to need replaced and those bearings are used on all four corners.

That being said, I still prefer tapered over radial bearings. Easier to work on and less finicky to remove and install.
 

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That's not even remotely true. Tapered bearings are designed to carry and spread/centralize the load on them. Standard radial bearings were NEVER designed to resist or carry an axial load. They're fine for a rear axle but far less than ideal for an axle that turns left to right and has to resist side-loads when cornering.
The pressed in I have been around are a double tapered bearing. Kind of two bearings (like my Ranger) in one sealed unit.



As per the front wheel bearings on my wife's Edge:



Flaming POS's that are at best worth $30 a ton. I hate them with a severe passion. Bolt on ones are slightly better, more expensive but you don't have to pull the knuckle and press the crap apart and back together.

I do mine maybe every 5-10 years and they never go bad, just need repacked. I try to keep it out of deep water too.
 

black_demon69

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pack my bearings when i do brakes just because i am there. lol

and i use the red grease.
 

G8orFord

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Unit bearings were designed to sell parts... and allow for a place to mount the VSS in some cases.
 

Dirtman

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So friggin big!
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Replacing all 4 wheel bearings plus races, seals AND rotors is cheaper than replacing one unit bearing...
 

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Replacing all 4 wheel bearings plus races, seals AND rotors is cheaper than replacing one unit bearing...
Exactly... They make more money

Probably has something to do with manufacturing too... way easier to zip a couple bolts down then fooling with all the parts and grease running down an assembly line
 

JOLENE_THE_RANGER

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way long ago i helped a friend machine the ID of a d44 spindle snout to pressfit over a ranger spindle snout. you could try that? or maybe buy a truck with unit bearings?
 


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