Bearings were getting a little crunchy on my Trance 29er so it was time to strip it down and replace them.
In the past on my aluminium frames I've used a combination of sockets and pipe and tubing offcuts to press bearings in and out but the Trance Advanced rear triangle and rocker are carbon fibre so pressing on and supporting things with metal just felt wrong. As a result, I decided to make some tools from PE100 (a type of HDPE) that would make the job easier and not damage the frame.
In total, three sets of bearing tools were required because of the three (four actually) different types of bearings used in the Maestro suspension setup. To complicate matters, the 'organic' shapes of the swingarm and rocker around the bearings meant that it wasn't possible to support the part all around as the bearing was pressed out.
For each size of bearing, three parts were required:
- bearing removal driver: this part drives the bearing out;
- press support: this is the piece that sits below the bearing as it's pressed out. It does three things - supports the part containing the bearing; catches the bearing once pressed out; and provides a guide hole for the bearing driver.
- bearing insertion driver: this parts drives the new bearing back into the part. It's got a boss that locates the bearing and then a raised edge that makes sure as the bearing is pressed back in force is only exerted on the outer race of the bearing.