950SE front wheel spacers sticking

Discussion in 'Crazy-Awesome almost Dakar racers (950/990cc)' started by northsoutheastwest, Feb 14, 2008.

  1. northsoutheastwest

    northsoutheastwest Alaskaless....for now.

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    The front wheel on my SE is exhibiting a lot of drag when spun. I have tried removing the front wheel and reinstalling it according to the manual with no success. When I tighten the front axle nut to 30ft-lb per the manual, the wheel then does not freely spin. Does anybody have any experience with this or know of a solution?
    #1
  2. Johnf3

    Johnf3 Long timer

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    Has anyone ever replaced the wheel bearings? It sounds like the spacer that goes between the two bearings inside the hub is missing. Without the spacer, when you tighten the axle nut it binds the bearings and the wheel does not turn.
    #2
  3. northsoutheastwest

    northsoutheastwest Alaskaless....for now.

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    I bought the bike new in October. I removed the front wheel for the first time the other night and the axle was incredibly hard to remove. The rider's right hand side spacer was stuck on the axle. Once I got it removed, evidence of scoring was present as if the spacer was turning inside the wheel bearing race and wheel center tube spacer. I took fine sandpaper and cleaned up the parts so that everything went together easily. I applied Bel Ray waterproof grease to all parts and reassembled. With the axle in place and the axle nut hand tight, everything spins fine. As soon as I tighten the axle nut to the required 30 ft lbs per the manual the drag shows up. The brake caliper is not installed at this point and the axle pinch bolts are loose. It simply seems that either the spacers are messed up somehow or the dimensions of the whole assembly dont allow for proper clearance.

    Or I guess my wheel bearings could be hosed.
    #3
  4. YOGOI

    YOGOI Prick

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    :lol3 Sounds like you know this from a personal experiance.:lol3

    But, your right. If the brake caliper is removed, then it has to be your spacers, or lack of.


    Sounds like it would be a good idea to replace everything.
    Bearings
    Spacers
    Seals
    Center tube spacer

    If you can do the work yourself its not too pricey, and its a good service to do to the bike anyway. The only extra part that you'll be buying is the center tube.

    You can buy after market bearings and seals. (ex. All Balls Racing sell them together) you'll save almost half of what KTM wants.

    The spacers you will have to order from KTM
    #4
  5. BC in Mid TN

    BC in Mid TN Been here awhile

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    I had that exact problem. The first time I took off the front wheel I noticed the axle nut/bolt didn't seem as tight as it should have been. When I put the wheel back on and torqued to spec the wheel was hard to turn. I made sure everything was in alignment retorqued, same thing. If I barely tightened the wheel it would spin fine. I pulled wheel off knocked out the bearings and found the spacer had spun and seized to the hub. My dealer got me new seals/bearings/spacer and snap ring. I was mad at myself because I always go thru and retorque everything whenever I get a new or used bike but hadn't here.:baldy I think Neduro had the same issue to some extent.
    It's also possible when your spacer spun it "machined" some of the length out of it so now you're side loading the bearings.
    #5
  6. northsoutheastwest

    northsoutheastwest Alaskaless....for now.

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    Thats it man. You just explained exactly what is happening. Would you please PM me the dealer name and number so I can refer my service folks to them?

    Thank you!!
    #6
  7. neduro

    neduro Addict

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    I had this happen also. To my knowledge, KTM is aware of the issue and will replace the parts for anyone that experiences the problem. I'm not sure what it stems from.
    #7
  8. cpmodem

    cpmodem Orange Caveman

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    In addition to the excellent suggestions provided so far, you might try following these instructions from the HOW for properly aligning the front end:

    "First install the left fork (left is determined as if you were sitting on the bike) into the triple clamps. (A little WD 40 sprayed on the fork tubes will make them slide in easier.) The measurement you took before you removed the forks will allow you to reinstall the left fork at the proper height. VERY IMPORTANT – Torque the pinch bolts to factory specs. Next, install the right fork in the triple clamp at approximately the same height as the left fork and LIGHTLY tighten ONLY ONE of the pinch bolts. This next step is CRITICAL –install the axle into the forks, grab the axle between the left and right fork, and begin rotating the axle. As you rotate the axle, loosen the pinch bolt on the right fork and move the right fork up and down until you locate the place where the axle turns most freely. Now, at this position, torque the pinch bolts to factory specs. Install the wheel and brakes, and tighten the axle and/or axle nut. Torque the axle pinch bolts on the LEFT FORK ONLY. Now, you need to work the forks up and down. The best way is to tie the cycle down in/on your trailer, or ride the cycle SLOWLY up and down the driveway, and pump the front brake level several times, making the forks move deep into the travel. Now you can TORQUE the RIGHT axle pinch bolts."
    #8
  9. northsoutheastwest

    northsoutheastwest Alaskaless....for now.

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    Thank you for the advice. I actually found this posted here earlier while conducting a search(yes I searched). I sort of did this by putting just the axle into the fork bottoms with no wheel involved to see if there was any issue with it spinning freely. To my knowlege there was none. I bolded the line where the problem shows up. I really dont think it is an alignment issue but more of a problem along the lines of what the others were saying. I am taking it to the dealer tomorrow to have them check it out. Thanks!!
    #9
  10. MorPower

    MorPower Rock Thrower

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    That the seat surface for the bearings on some hubs are too deep!!! I had the exact same problem last summer on my 2007 SE. Even after replacing everything with all new components except the hub it still bound up. After much cussing, bitching, complaining and kicking stuff I calmed down enough to reason out the cause. Some will doubt my conclusion, here's the proof. Simply take a digital caliper and measure the spacer tube, now take a measurement on the inside of the hub, bearing seal surface to bearing seal surface through the hub. My hub was 1.5MM shorter than the spacer tube, so it's easy to see that when you tighten the wheel nut it jams the hub spacer tube into the sides of the bearing causing the bearings to deflect just enough that they sieze on the wheel spacer.

    My solution, I cut off 1.5mm off the tube spacer to exactly match the distance between the bearings. Works correct now. No thanks to the dickheads at KTM who would not for the longest time admit that I WAS RIGHT!!!
    #10
  11. WIBO

    WIBO Will it buff out?

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    un-related sort of,but have it for info, in my Gas Gas 300 rear wheel the set up has an extra thin spacer akin to a washer..leave this out and the bearings side load and soon calve.
    #11
  12. Taki

    Taki Waiting for Godot

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    Thanks for the post. The first time I took off the front wheel of my SE I noticed the same thing but just put it back on the same way the factory did. Problem is I have been trying to find the source of a high speed wobble. I have gone through everything on the bike and finally deduced that it was probably a 908rr tire (may still be) but this spacer issue has to be corrected to rule out the chassis as the source of my wobble.
    WTF KTM:huh

    Just checking; the spacer needs to be "exactly" the same length as the distance between the bearing seats? Or should there be a tiny amount of float, say .25 mm?
    #12
  13. MorPower

    MorPower Rock Thrower

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    Taki

    The spacer is supposed to float without pressure, then when you tighten the nut it then snugs up on both sides. So, yes a 1/4 mm sounds about right.
    #13
  14. Taki

    Taki Waiting for Godot

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    Why the fuck doesn't KTM address these issues in a manner that owners can get their bikes fixed BEFORE they break? I have had four KTMs and each one has had at LEAST one potentially catastrophic manufacturing flaw. In almost every case the dealers were oblivious the the issue until six months later when KTM issued a Technical Service Bulletin to the dealer in lieu of a recall and did not bother to notify me with only one exception.

    WTF KTM?
    #14
  15. MorPower

    MorPower Rock Thrower

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    That has been my experience as well, KTM (like most manufacturers) is VERY slow to admit anything is wrong, and it does seem that thier dealers are the last to know anything.

    Every single time I have had an issue with one of my 3 KTM's, the reply I inevitably got from the dealers was "that's the first I have heard of this problem". 6 months or a year later they would admit there WAS a problem.

    Trouble is, HondaBMWYamahaSuzukiKawasaki do the same thing. It's simply not to their best financial advantage to admit something is wrong!
    #15
  16. gabrielu

    gabrielu Mo' Beta!

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    got exact same problem, found this thread, went to the dealer-

    first reply was: never heard of this problem, all the things you find on the web are bs, you probably overtighten it and ruined it yourself.

    I was able to contain myself and politely but firmly insist they'll talk to KTM folks and find out about this known problem- Next day I was ready to make a scene, but was told that KTM instructed to replace the whole wheel under warranty- :clap apparently relacing a new hub onto existing rim cost them more-

    now everything works fine- In my case it appears that the spacer between the bearings seized within the hub, and thus tightening the axle nut would lock everything- Why it seized is not clear (dealer did not bother looking at the problem, just sent the whell back) but I believe hub/spacer tolerance issue is the likely culprit-

    So this time KTM came through for me, still am glad I have an extended warranty now that my one year warranty expired....

    Btw, once everything was done, it turns out the techincian had put back on old axle and spacers (scored badly) but the parts guys figured it- It took them two minutes to install the new axle and spacers, but WTF?

    Gabriele-
    #16
  17. Nowwhat

    Nowwhat I'll Go Second...

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    KTM replaced the entire hub on my bike under warranty....
    #17
  18. Steve1100gs

    Steve1100gs Been here awhile

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    Same problem on brand new hub.

    Bought hubs for dirt wheels. first time i used them I struggled to remove front wheel spindle.

    Nothing to do with wheel spindle torque. Bad manufacture of hub casting/machining.

    I took a die grinder to the inside of the hub after removing seals bearings etc. After enabling the tube to spin properly there have been no problems.

    I didn't know it was a mass problem, but even if I did I doubt I would have taken the hub to the dealer so they could make me wait 2 weeks for another one.
    #18
  19. Taki

    Taki Waiting for Godot

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    Spoke with KTM today and they are looking into it.
    #19
  20. motojedi

    motojedi been there

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    I believe this is the problem with mine as well.

    My SE is my only vehicle so I'll work on the hub spacer at work tomorrow.(machine shop) It currently turns with everything assembled correctly but is a little stiff.
    #20