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Removing ball bearings from blade spindle shaft

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 MTD blade spindles [aftermarket] are fairly cheap, but bearings are cheaper. Also add to the fact that some of these replacements may have only a 3 star blade drive instead of a six star like the factory unit. It is fairly simple to remove the spindle shaft from the spindle, The internet has plenty of video on it but i was left with two out of three bearings on the blade end. I messed with them a bit until I managed to break the bearing outer perimeter and ball race. It was actually a blessing in disguise. If you wish to break it, a few sharp blows from outside to the bearing center will do it.

 

 I put what was left of it firmly into a vise and just ground away slowly the interior hub of the bearing. If you are careful, you can grind one side to nearly paper thin, flip it over, and grind the other side 180 degrees away. even if you grind through a bit and flat spot the shaft a tad, the new bearing will still have plenty of support. It is then easy to remove  because the grinding allows the bearing hub room to expand.

 

I keep two grinders around, one with a thin cutting wheel and one with a grinding wheel. Stay away from the cheap Harbor Freight model, but the better model of HF is fine. I have had decent luck with Dewalt wheels, but the Harbor freight wheels are hit and miss. An unbalanced wheel is not worth the safety hazard.

 

 I will check out what bearings are available that are USA made, but if I cannot find any, I plan to add a grease zerk to the spindle and remove the inner bearing seals so the grease gets in. The bearings are available on Amazon for three to seven dollars

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Trying to remove tight bearings when you can't get the proper tool on them can be a right pain. Using a grinder, if you can get it in is sometimes the only way. I find you only need to mark the hardened race with the grinding wheel, this creates a 'stress riser' in the hardened surface, just like using a glass cutter to cut a sheet of glass,then with the bearing supported on the opposite side, using a chisel in the grinding mark, give it a good whack with a hammer, this usually splits the race and it slides off the shaft. This is a method commonly used to remove rwd auto half shaft bearings.:UK:

Edited by ranger
Safety, Remember, ALWAYS wear goggles when doing anything like this.

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