Deep breath in… and ahhhhh.
Yes, today I was able to finally get my new steering bearings on my steering stem.
Going back to February 9th, I actually had tried to put this together with the original bearings, and I snapped the bearing race when I was pressing it on. I was so frustrated with it that I just didn’t post anything here. I immediately ordered some new bearings from All Balls Racing, but I was dreading snapping these guys too.
Today, I put my steering stem/yoke into the freezer, then I put my bearings into the oven at 250 degrees and cooked them for a while. Once I had my press ready, I pulled in my steering stem and put just a tiny bit of grease on it (hopefully to help it slip on). Then I got my bearings from my oven and slipped them into place. I used my old bearing race as the piece between my bearings and cast iron fitting (because my new tapered bearings would’ve been damaged if they were pressed directly into the cast iron fitting). It was handy to have.
Wahoo! Success! With some force, the pieces came together and are now one!
I then put the upper race in place, then worked on the lower race. The lower one was difficult to get it in straight at first (even though I chilled it, and heated up the frame). Once I had it set straight, I used the steering stem and bearings to help press it in fully (just by tightening at the top, and occasionally tapping with a hammer on the bottom).
Now I’m ready to do the top. I just need to make a little spacer so that the R1 top clamp will fit with the steering stem. Anyway, I’m close. I just ordered some new aluminum so I can turn down this spacer.
I’m very excited!