Did I just screw my wheel up?


XS400 Addict
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Jacksonville, Fl
So, I'm removing the bearings so I could powder coat the wheel, and I see what looks to be a rubber seal. Ok, pull it out. Um...


Do I need that 100%

Well, it seems as if it's glued to the wheel. or does it seem that way because it's been on there for 30 years?

So just scrape it off best I can and buy a replacement?

Ok, now..what's the best way to remove the bearings? Large wood dowel on one side and hammer the hell out of it?
It might be glued in there as the front wheel seals aren't that easy to find (unless you order original or B part). It's cheaper solution to buy the standard size and make it fit and to make sure it hold off any dust u need to glue it in place.

Remove the old seal as you can, rip it out, then take the measurements and buy a new one.

And about removing the bearings. If you don't have a special tool, it's really pain in the arse to get them out undamaged. I simply welded huge bolt to it and just punched it out. Ofc in this case you need new bearings too.
Hey Charles. It probably just seems that way because its been there for 30 years. You want to replace them with new regardless.

When I pulled my shocks apart I found actual roofing tar at the bottom that was stopping a leak. The previous owner had left out the crush washer and decided that was an easier fit. go figure. So you never know about the glue.

The seal on that side is easy to get its the other side I had trouble with. The one that fits the speedo housing.

The dimensions for all the seals are in the manual. Be carefull not to loose or damage the spacer in the middle of the bearings. There is a shim on one end of it, it looks kinda like a hat thats been pressed over the spacer.

Nah, if you screw anything up it will just cost you more money...not good but not the end of the world. Bearings can be bought at your local bearing shop.Drewpy helped me out with that info. I found two in my area. They sold bearings and covers for a reasonable price. The bearings have ####'s on them and thats how they are identified. The shop should be able to determine the covers aswell.Save the covers if you like for identification? maybe? Maybe the powder coat guys can hook you up too? Maybe? Cost more but less trouble for you? Good luck!
I think Drewpy posted this some time...


I used this method and it worked a treat and you don't damage the wheel or bearings.

The seals are almost impossible to take out without damaging and will need replacing. They are about £6 ($10) in the UK.

Also as Shaun said don't throw away the tophat spacer in the rear bearing by mistake as they are difficult to replace.
that top hat is just a protector, it fits snugly on the spacer.

if you use bearings with a Z letter at the end of the bearing number, it typifies that it has a built in seal. So technically you dont need the original seals!
Ok, I'm still a little confused. Sorry!

I've removed some of the rubber seals and I need to clarify if only the rubber is removed or if the rubber and the metal piece is removed.


If you can tell, I've removed some of the rubber and you can see the metal that was underneath...then there's a gap (where some more rubber was, which has been removed) and then the bearing. Does that top metal piece come out cause it seems pretty firm in there. I guess I need to know if the seal is a piece of metal sandwiched by rubber and the whole piece comes out, or is the seal all rubber and slips over the metal and that metal is part of the wheel.
if you are removing the bearings, just get them out, the seals will come out with the bearing.

A little bit of heat will soften the rubber a little and make it a bit easier.
There is a spacer,like a piece of pipe between the bearings[on most models]and all you have to do is push it to one side and drift the bearing out.Once one is out,drift the other out,and put sealed bearings in [with the spacer] with or without seals.The bearings come with very little grease,and I carefully pry off the seals and put a little wheel bearing grease in the shell,then reseal it. lha
Ok, put some Gibbs on them and the dust seals came out. Now I need to find a way to get the bearings out. :)

So Drew, if I get the bearings that are sealed, then I don't need the dust seals, correct?

lhaolpa...drift it out??
Hi Charles

A drift will work to get out the bearings. The spacer will move side to side with no shaft running through just work your way around the bearing so it dosen't bind in the wheel.
This will demo the bearings but your replacing them so it dosen't matter. Either that or spring for a blind bearing remover or use a slide hammer to pop them out.

I would say you still need dust seals. Otherwise you will get corrosion and everything from the road inside. Also the speedo housing is on one side (mine has disc brakes so not sure if you have drum). With no dust seals the speedo housing which is full of grease will get full of dirt and grind itself up.

I thought I answered the question a few posts back,but a drift is a punch with a flat end instead of a dull point. lha
I just picked up all new bearings locally at a belt and bearing shop for my '78 xs400. They were 2x 6302-z for the front, and 6303-z / 6304-z for the rear. They were made in Japan an only ran me just under $60. They cost the same shipped but I didnt want to wait.

They are sealed units and as dreqpy said the z is for metal dust covers, the actual bike shop wanted $10 more for the bearings with plastic dust covers so I didnt even bother asking how much more the z would cost me.

Anybody have a handle on where to order the rubber dust covers? I seemed to do alright on the front and rear removing the one side on each but the ones with the little spring wrapped around the inside are a little warped on each,
Since the bearings are sealed,You don't really need seals,but it wouldnt hurt to replace them.The seals can be matched up at the same store where the bearings were bought. The most important seal is the SD type seal which seals off the brake shoe area. lha