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Old 03-25-2016, 08:45 AM   #1
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1968 26' Overlander
1961 26' Overlander
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1968 Overlander Wheel Bearing replacement

I've searched the sub forum and I don't see any 1968 Overlander reference for bearing replacement.
I'm going to do mine, this weekend.
Hoping that perhaps someone here has done it and has the part numbers so we can compare notes.
I will post pics of my replacement so the next person looking for 1968 era wheel bearing replacement pics will have a resource to do so.

If someone has been there and done that (and posted it on the forums), please send it my way.

Kevin
Culpeper, Va
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Old 03-25-2016, 08:48 AM   #2
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nice idea. Did yours fail?
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Old 03-25-2016, 12:03 PM   #3
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When I checked my 1968 GT(Tennessee forest recovery) wheel bearings, The original Timken rollers and races looked perfect. If your bearings show no signs of wear, re-pack them by hand (I packed my first bearing in 1963 autoshop class, and 50+ years of packing, believe hand-pack is better than machine-pack). If you cannot identify wear, don't remove the hub races. Take your hubs and caged rollers to an experienced parts counter guy, He'll look at them and say.

Buy new USA seals. The double lip seal is nice, but a single lip USA seal is just fine. Take your old seal to NAPA, They'll identify them, and they'll have 'em in stock. Today, I don't think that you can buy a better bearing than the 1968 Timken you already have. If your bearings are indeed bad, find USA Timkens.

There should be plenty of "re-pack" guidance on the yootubes. If I didn't know much about it, I'd take pictures, and note or mark the castellated axle nut so I got the cotter pin back in the exact same castellation as before. There is no reason for this dimension to change. Wheel bearings are not adjusted for wear. Otherwise, you may be a notch too loose or tight. I'd rather be a notch loose than tight. Another way to check if you've got the nut tightened correctly, is to be able to move the washer behind it by prying between it and the hub bore with a flat blade screwdriver. If you can slide the washer with some resistance, you're OK. If the washer wiggles easily you're too loose, if the washer can't move, you're too tight. There must be yootubes about this technique too.

If you re-seal and re-pack good original bearings, the nut will most likely snug to exactly the same cotter alignment as before. New bearings and races may not align cotter pin the same as original bearing. I over-tighten the nut, spin the wheel, back the nut off, and snug it to where it feels good to me, and check the washer's movement.

Advise about how much grease? Expect disagreement here... Some folks insist on using way more than needed. I'm of the school to use only enough to pack the bearing. I don't fill everywhere and pack the dustcap like some. I'll say that if everything is done right there's no need to put any extra grease in the dustcaps at all. A correctly packed bearing with good seals will hold its grease forever. I've never seen a dustcap full of grease magically migrate into a burning bearing and save it. The seals are waaay more important.

If high quality bearings are done right, they'll last 100,000 miles or more.
It's a little intimidating in the first time, but good for you, doin' it yourself! That way you know that it's done right.
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Old 03-25-2016, 05:37 PM   #4
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my bearings were pro packed 4 years ago which equates to about 2000 miles or so. Last time I checked they were very well lubed. Just curious as to when they might fail. I worked on brakes and wheel bearings and tires in the late 60s at our family car care place.
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Old 03-25-2016, 06:33 PM   #5
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Hi mqcarma, nice to meet you. Your 68 Overlander is one of the better vintage Airstreams in my view. It is a great trailer for comfortable traveling, once it is made in good working order. It is the last year of the "old" body style.

It is unusual for wheel bearings to fail. They do last a long time as most Airstreams don't get a lot of miles on them every year. I think yearly maintenance of the brakes and bearings is a necessary routine. The best way to get a wheel bearing to fail is to over tighten the axle nut. I snug it, rotate the drum to seat the bearing rollers in the grease, and then back off the nut until the next slot aligns with the axle hole and the cotter pin slides into place.

You can assess the condition of your eight bearing sets (two bearing sets per axle spindle) by cleaning them and inspecting for pits, spalling, and rough feel when the cone (bearing) is rotated in the cup (race).

Your Overlander is fitted with 12" diameter, 2" wide drum brakes. The bearing races, or "cups" and pressed into the drums. The bearing part numbers for the 12" drum (some call it a 5200 pound axle) are:

LM67048 and 25580.

You need to buy both the cup and the cone. I don't run a new cone in an old race. The part numbers are usually marked on the bearings themselves.

I think the grease seal is: GS 2125DL. It is best to clean up and take the old grease seal with you as there are a lot of grease seal sizes and part numbers.

I fully agree Timken makes an excellent tapered roller bearing. NSK and SKF aren't far behind. Tapered roller bearings are made to an automotive standard. I avoid the ones with plastic cages.

Hope this helps.

David
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Old 03-26-2016, 07:01 AM   #6
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great info David, nice name to ( its my last name).
I am a fan of the shape of the mid 60s trailers, the true twinkie.
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Old 03-26-2016, 09:38 AM   #7
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1968 26' Overlander
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David, Great info. I'm very appreciative of your time and information. Most of it basically makes be feel better that I am doing the job correctly. I've been working on 50-80's cars for long enough to need to know how to service hubs and hub bearings. This is my first Torsion axle, and a great deal of experience carries over. So, I am going to try and give the rest of our forum viewers some picture resources.
I hope that my pics will work. SO here goes!
So I have a 1968 Airstream Overlander. I restored it and have been using it to go camping and as racecar central for my racecar mechanic work at the track.
Here is my shot at trying to show the bits inside the hub and how I do my wheel hub service.
First, I crack the wheel nuts on the wheel I want to service. Then, I get the wheel I need to service up off of the ground by towing the Airstream onto a ramp (the forward wheel up off the ground will allow the rear wheel to dangle in the air high enough to get the wheel off).
Pull the wheel and remove the dust cap (break the seal with a small hand chisel or screwdriver and then with a big set of channel locks, you can grip both sides and wiggle it off) It is just as easy to just tap the chisel/screwdriver all around the edge of the dust cap lip and it will come off. See pic:

Now, you will see the hub nut and cotter pin keeping it in place. You will need a small hammer a nice set of needle nose pliers and a 36mm socket on a breaker bar. If you straighten out the cotter pin as close to straight as possible, then put your needle nose plier tip in the opposite end, you can tap the face of the needle nose pliers with your small hammer and the cotter pin should slide right out nice and neat.

Now you have your hub nut ready to remove. At this point, just eyeball everything to see if you see anything amiss (can you wiggle the drum in/out or up/down and have significant "clunking" noise when you move it), or is it easy to spin the drum? is it hard to spin the drum? does it make any weird noises like metal granola rolling around inside there? ok good? then remove the nut.
You will see the tabbed washer, pull the drum towards you and pull the tabbed washer out.






you will then see that you can see the outer part of the conical tapered bearing.

Ok, important part here, pull the hub towards you now that the hub nut is off (have a nice clean place to lay your bits down on. I use a blue paper towel on an old (not the kitchen stock) cookie sheet. The outer bearing should come out and fall into your hand (because you are prepared). Otherwise, it will fall in the dirt/floor and you will have to clean it. (ask me how I know)



Now that the tabbed washer is out and the outer bearing is out, (and on your paper towel), you can pull your drum off and inspect it. Look for shiny spots on the inside of the drum, any kind of "metal granola" you may see inside the drum hub area. Your inner hub seal should be clean, maybe some dried up grease and dust, but it should not be all greasy. It should just need a wipe down. I've taken a few pics for you to be able to identify your bearings and seals. I hope they help.
BEARINGS and SEAL numbers:


check your interior of the drum (this is the brake magnetic pickup area), make sure it is clean and shiny like this for good magnetic pickup)

This is the magnet that rides on that inside area of the drum, when the magnet activates (brake pedal depressed), it sticks to the inner drum and activates the brake shoes to engage the friction brake drum area of the inner perimeter of the drum (just like plain old drum brakes work). Be sure to check the actuation of the brake shoes by moving this magnet fore and aft (towards front of trailer and back of trailer) to ensure that the linkage between magnet and brake shoes work properly. Also check your springs that are at the 12:00 and 6:00 position, make sure they are in good shape and connected. TAKE DIGITAL PICS NOW of what the springs/brake shoes and magnets are supposed to look like. You will thank me later when you try to figure out how they go back together when you do your brake job in the future. Keep a folder on your computer of AIRSTREAM REFERENCE PICS.

Next, clean your spindle, all the way back to the drum backing plate. You need to inspect for hairline cracks, shiny spots where a bearing may be breaking down and not spinning correctly, or hot spots where the spindle has experienced heat (bluing or discoloration of the metal). If you find anything out of the ordinary, you may want to think about replacing your bearings. If you find a CRACK on your spindle you need to STOP and consult the folks here with pictures. A CRACK on your spindle is VERY DANGEROUS and a wheel can FALL off and you can DIE. Get the point? A cracked spindle is bad, and will require the replacement of the entire hub or axle. Now, back to bearings.
Here is a clean, tidy hub spindle. Wipe off with paper towel and put in your trash bag you have on your cookie sheet.

Slather some good Moly grease on that spindle (I use this stuff on the race car and it sees much more punishment than the Airstream does, so I can say with some certainty that it is good stuff). NOT TOO MUCH, just a good circumferential slathering. Think of cream cheese on a bagel. Too much is just gross. and not helpful.




You are going to do the same with the bearing outer race. Put some grease on your fingers, some on your palm and work the grease into the bearing (think frosting the inside and outside of a donut)push the grease in by pushing the bearing into the grease in your palm.

Now put that drum back on carefully, seat it all the way back and put your outer bearing race in place with all of its greasy goodness

next the tabbed washer (tab goes in the key way)

Then the hub nut


Tighten it down. Not too tight, but snug it down and then back the nut off one slot to fit the cotter pin. This may take a few attempts. Rule is that you should not be able to pull/push the drum and feel a CLUNK. It should spin freely and not bind. SO, tighten the nut as nice and tight, and back off the nut Juuuuust enough to allow access for the cotter pin on the very next available slot. Then bend over your cotter pin.

Lastly, tap on your dust cover. DO NOT pack the cap with grease. That is a silly practice. (in my estimation only)


Ok, wheel back on, torque down the nuts and grab wheel at 12:00 and 6:00 and wiggle. You should have NO wiggle or clunking of the wheel, do the same at 9:00 and 3:00. NO wiggle/clunk? you are good to go. Wiggle clunk present? Try the tightening down of the hub nut again and put it back together, perhaps you did not get it seated properly. If after two attempts at putting the hub and wheel back together, you STILL have WIGGLE/CLUNK, then you will probably need to fit new wheel bearings.

I hope this helps. You can email me directly at krichards167@gmail or call me directly at 703 244 9758 if you have any questions, or if my pics are not clear.

Trying to pay it forward for all of the help this forum has given me!
Kevin
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Old 03-26-2016, 09:46 AM   #8
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1968 26' Overlander
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culpeper , Virginia
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OUTER BEARING: TIMKEN LM67048
INNER BEARING: TIMKEN 25580
Inner Bearing Seal: NATIONAL 442109

For the record, these are all of the original 1967 (1968 model) Bearings that this Airstream was made with. They are in great shape and I hope to get some more good miles out of them.
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Old 03-26-2016, 12:43 PM   #9
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Thanks for this great lesson. It may come in handy one day. ������
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Old 03-26-2016, 01:05 PM   #10
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There's a way and there's the right way.

When the nut is adjusted properly, you should have .005'-.010" of axial play measured with a dial indicator. You will feel "clunking" as you describe it when the bearing preload is correct.
A good thing to do is use the maintenance instructions from the axle manufacturer. This guide from Dexter has nearly all you need to know.
http://www.dexteraxle.com/i/u/614960...ice_Manual.pdf
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Old 03-26-2016, 03:39 PM   #11
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This was a great lesson and consistent with my experience as a manufacturing plant engineer. Please allow me to add a foot note. Industrial bearings fail more often from too much grease in a sealed environment than too little. Your comment not to fill the grease cup is correct. The same thing applies to the space inside the hub between the bearings. I have seen folks fill that space thinking the extra grease inside would be good but the opposite is true. Too much grease causes heat to build up inside the assembly which can cause the grease cap to pop off or the seal to fail and/or the grease to cook and harden.
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Old 03-26-2016, 03:46 PM   #12
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Great pics Kevin

I clean my bearings with Varsol in the hub...placed over a coffee tin and wash and spin the bearings till clean. You can then check for condition by pressing the cone into the cup with your hand and turning the cone. If you don't feel any roughn3ess the cup and cone are good to go. If you pick up the slightest bump or vibration the bearings are probably toast. I actually never change seals unless there is credence they are not tight, or they show lip wear. Still seals are cheap and easy to replace; bearings are more of a challenge.
As to how long bearings last, if properly packed, never get wet and adjustment is kept just right they will probably last for ever...more or less. These bearings in industrial service turn day and night at 1000's of RPM for years if properly lubed and adjusted..AS Service can't even come close for wear, but dirt and moisture in axle service require a change of grease very two years or 10,000 miles. Pay now or pay later...
JCW
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Old 03-26-2016, 05:57 PM   #13
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Thanks for publishing all the photos, folks here love pictures. It's very considerate to share your experience.


OH MY!! I'll have to warn you that if the “Anti-Anti-Seize” crowd sees your lug-studs, you'll be in for a tongue lashing. It's quite the controversy..


Here's an old lug-nut thread.


http://www.airforums.com/forums/f42/...-119932-7.html


I got my two cents in on page seven, post #93. There are still many adamant non-believers!



Wondering what torque setting you prescribe to with Anti-Seize??
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Old 03-26-2016, 06:04 PM   #14
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The bearing numbers for the older Airstreams are 25580 for the large inner bearing and LM 67048 for the smaller outer bearing.

Andy
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