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Discussion Starter #1
I'm going to get my new tires on this weekend and this will be the first time I've removed my front wheel/tire.

Does anybody have opinions about whether the instructions/steps in the Clymer manual (2009) for removing/reinstalling the front wheel are good? Any additional tips or advice from anybody regarding this, especially the directions and sequence of steps when re-torquing the axle pinch bolts?

If anybody's learned anything the hard way, I'd be interested in hearing your tale.

Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
I did happen to notice in my 2009 Clymer manual, under removing/reinstalling the rear wheel, it doesn't reference the torque on the rear axle nut. The last thing it says is "Install the axle nut and tighten it finger-tight." That's it; doesn't refer you to another chapter or anything for the torque on the nut as it does for the front axle.

Anybody would know there's a torque value on that rear axle nut and it's listed in a separate table in the front of the book, but it just shows that steps can be omitted and mistakes can be made in any manual like this. Guess it's not really a "mistake," but don't see why they don't have a handy reference to it right there under those steps.
 

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The service manual specifies 15 ft/lbs for the front clamp bolts, 65 ft/lbs for the front axle nut and 72 ft/lbs for the rear axle nut. Jot those numbers in your clymer. : )
 

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planalp -

To remove and replace the front wheel:

Best to have the bike on a lift/jack.

Right and left are as you sit on the bike, not as you look at the bike from the front. As vatrader says, right is your spoon hand...

Start with the bike solidly on the ground.
Loosen the front axle nut.
Crack loose the pinch bolts one at a time, then go back and loosen them one turn, then go back and fully loosen them. Don't remove them.
Jack the bike up so that the wheel is just touching the ground.
Slip the axle out and roll the wheel slightly forward.
Carefully disengage the speedo drive and slide the wheel free of the brake calipers.

Do your thing.

Bring the wheel back to just in front of the forks and very carefully re-engage the speedo drive.
Make sure the tabs on the drive are properly engaged in the hub.
Take a deep breath.
Make sure the tabs on the drive are properly engaged in the hub.
Make sure the tabs on the drive are properly engaged in the hub.
Get it? if the tabs are not in there right you will screw up both the speedo drive and the hub. This will cost you money. It's not hard.
Slide the wheel carefully back into the fork, engaging the rotor between the calipers. Make sure the brake pads haven't shifted. It should go in without drama, banging, or cussing.
Make sure the tab on the body of the speedo drive is engaged in the slot on the right fork leg. If it isn't, then the speedo cable is the only thing holding it in place and preventing it from rotating. That could cost you money.
Put the axle back in, making sure it the head seats in the recess in the right fork leg.
Alternately tighten the pinch bolts on the right fork leg a bit at a time, drawing them up to proper torque. You'll know you've done it right if the wee gap is even. Human Ills gave you the proper values.
Run the axle nut up finger tight.
Drop the bike so the wheel is firmly in contact with terra firma, then torque it to final spec. Don't try to torque the axle nut with the bike in the air, as you may topple it over on it's plasticy stuff, which will cost you money.
Alternately tighten the pinch bolts on the left fork leg a bit at a time, drawing them up to proper torque.

Dunno what the Clymer says, but that oughta do it...

T
 

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I don't torque my axle nuts as tight as the manual states. I want to be able to break them loose with the tools in my toolkit if I need too. 70 ft. lbs is hard to get off without a breaker bar. I use Locktite blue on the nuts.

When you install the front wheel it's important to align the forks.

 

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Discussion Starter #7
I don't torque my axle nuts as tight as the manual states. I want to be able to break them loose with the tools in my toolkit if I need too. 70 ft. lbs is hard to get off without a breaker bar. I use Locktite blue on the nuts.

When you install the front wheel it's important to align the forks.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=siSIue3IWeI
Thanks for the video, Spec. I read this same procedure (compressing the front forks) to make sure the forks are aligned. The video explains it a lot better.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
planalp -

To remove and replace the front wheel:

Best to have the bike on a lift/jack.

Right and left are as you sit on the bike, not as you look at the bike from the front. As vatrader says, right is your spoon hand...

Start with the bike solidly on the ground.
Loosen the front axle nut.
Crack loose the pinch bolts one at a time, then go back and loosen them one turn, then go back and fully loosen them. Don't remove them.
Jack the bike up so that the wheel is just touching the ground.
Slip the axle out and roll the wheel slightly forward.
Carefully disengage the speedo drive and slide the wheel free of the brake calipers.

Do your thing.

Bring the wheel back to just in front of the forks and very carefully re-engage the speedo drive.
Make sure the tabs on the drive are properly engaged in the hub.
Take a deep breath.
Make sure the tabs on the drive are properly engaged in the hub.
Make sure the tabs on the drive are properly engaged in the hub.
Get it? if the tabs are not in there right you will screw up both the speedo drive and the hub. This will cost you money. It's not hard.
Slide the wheel carefully back into the fork, engaging the rotor between the calipers. Make sure the brake pads haven't shifted. It should go in without drama, banging, or cussing.
Make sure the tab on the body of the speedo drive is engaged in the slot on the right fork leg. If it isn't, then the speedo cable is the only thing holding it in place and preventing it from rotating. That could cost you money.
Put the axle back in, making sure it the head seats in the recess in the right fork leg.
Alternately tighten the pinch bolts on the right fork leg a bit at a time, drawing them up to proper torque. You'll know you've done it right if the wee gap is even. Human Ills gave you the proper values.
Run the axle nut up finger tight.
Drop the bike so the wheel is firmly in contact with terra firma, then torque it to final spec. Don't try to torque the axle nut with the bike in the air, as you may topple it over on it's plasticy stuff, which will cost you money.
Alternately tighten the pinch bolts on the left fork leg a bit at a time, drawing them up to proper torque.

Dunno what the Clymer says, but that oughta do it...

T
Thanks for the tips/instructions! I've read quite a bit about the speedometer drive tabs and it's definitely something I'll check and triple-check.

My "jack" is two concrete blocks and some pieces of wood. I have peg-lowering brackets so I just put a concrete block under each block and rock the bike side-to-side and add wood shims between the block and the peg bracket until it's as high as I want it. Might be a PITA, but it's definitely stable once the wheels leave the ground.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the tips and advice, guys. I got both my front and rear tires changed today with no problems: took about 3 hours total and that was taking my time to make sure I didn't screw anything up. I took it out for a trip around town to make sure there weren't any surprises and here in awhile I'm going to take it out on the highway to see if I have any balance issues.

I've now got everything on the bike I would need to pull off either wheel and either patch or replace an inner tube in an emergency. It's nice knowing you can do that wherever you are.
 

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For what is is worth, I remove the brake caliper from the fork leg when removing the front wheel. This gives me the opportunity to get a good look at the brake pads. For me, the only time the front wheel comes off is to replace the tire.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I didn't do it this time because the KLR only has about 2500 miles on it, but the next time I'll probably take your advice and take off the caliper for a good look at the brake pads.

I just left all the weights on the wheels where they were and have had it up to 75 and can't detect any noticeable vibrations coming from the wheels or anything else weird going on. I figure if one of the wheels was out of balance enough to cause any damage, I'd notice it at that speed, which is about the fastest I ever ride.

I've got about 200 miles on the new tires now with no problems, so I guess I did okay.
 

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Reviving this thread as it just informed me as to what I did wrong.

I 'thought' my speedo drive was aligned, but when I applied even the lightest torque on the axle nut, the front wheel wouldn't spin.

Thankfully I wasn't cranking on it - just trying to snug up the axle nut before torquing it to 64 ft/lbs.

Just took it apart and the tabbed ring that interlocks the speedo gear with the front hub had been squashed a bit. No damage to the hub. I flattened the tabs on the ring out, put some fresh grease in there and put it back together.

No problems this time.

Thanks to Tom for this sage advice. I've put my fair share of front wheels on motorcycles over the past 25 years, but we all make mistakes.

"Make sure the tabs on the drive are properly engaged in the hub.
Take a deep breath.
Make sure the tabs on the drive are properly engaged in the hub.
Make sure the tabs on the drive are properly engaged in the hub.
Get it? if the tabs are not in there right you will screw up both the speedo drive and the hub. This will cost you money. It's not hard."
 
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