Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Lyndonville NY
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Track Driveshaft Bearing Failure: An Overlook.
The PTO side track driveshaft bearing has been known to have a short life span on many Artic Cat sleds. I will address why I feel this is happening, but first I will describe the inspection procedure.
Loosen the track. With the bearing now basically unloaded, you can check for radial play [up and down movement]. If any is felt, replace bearing. If no play is felt, remove the carriage bolts and slide the flange plate away from bearing. Now remove the set screw in the bearing lock collar and twist this collar around the driveshaft to move away from bearing. This will allow you to free the bearing from the tunnel to examine it more closely [the bearing will remain on shaft].
With your index finger and thumb, move the bearing around back and forth. If any roughness is felt, replace the bearing.
This bearing is permanently sealed and non-serviceable. Under no circumstances should you remove the seals and/or pack grease into it! The problem is, the speedo drive adaptor is mated up to one side of this bearing and has a grease fitting in it.
THIS GREASE FITTING IS NOT FOR THE DRIVE SHAFT BEARING! Sealed bearings come from the factory only 50-60% filled with grease. If filled completely, they will overheat and cause the bearing to prematurely fail. The grease in the bearing will overheat
and turn black or brown.
Problem is , when you pump grease into the speedo drive adaptor, the grease goes in but has no where to go [no exit]. So, the grease gets pressurized and goes through the bearing seal, fills up the bearing and exits the other side seal and into the tunnel. Remember, this is not good for a sealed bearing! So you folks who think you are doing good by greasing this fitting twice a season are actually contributing to premature bearing failure!
The solution to this problem is simple. Create an exit slot opposite the grease fitting in the speedo drive adaptor plate with a round file. Now the adaptor can be purged of old grease and will not penetrate through the the sealed bearing.