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Rear Suspension Linkage

bpdutton

Member
Member
Putting new tires on the bike and figured I would clean/inspect/service the rear shock and linkage while the rear wheel is off since it hasn't been done since I've owned the bike.  Upon disassembly and cleaning of the linkage, I noticed the needle bearing in the middle bore of the suspension arm was not centered.  (See attached pics.)  One side is about 3/8 of an inch from the outside edge and the other is about an 1/8 inch.  These are pressed in cages so it doesn't move without force.  I bought the bike from the original owner and he kept detailed service records - no mention of any work on the linkage - so I have to believe the bike came from the factory like this.  In looking at an OEM parts diagram online, it looks like there are supposed to be 2 needle bearings in that bore.  (See attached pic circled in red.)  Kind of confused - all needle bearings are smooth, tight and not notchy.  There is no play in any of the bolts/bores and minimal wear for just shy of 50k miles on the bike.  The seals are also in good shape - still pliable with no cracking or damage.  Wondering if I'm OK to grease it all up and reassemble the way it is or should I be ordering new bearings, bolt and seals for that middle bore.  Kind of wanted the bike back together, off the lift and rideable by the weekend - not waiting for parts.  WWCD?  (What Would COG Do?)
 

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Mercer

Member
Member
Order two bearings would say. Surely at  least one anyway.  Lucky 50k might not last. I have used my seals again save for visibly damaged or hard.

Failing that would at least center it.

Ha! Hate to recommend anything as it has worked in some fashion apparently well and long as is. Sure others with more C10 experience will have thoughts too.
 

Mercer

Member
Member
[/quote]
I did it due to the self lubricating bushings.
[/quote]

Thanks.....zero upkeep....knew you had a good reason!
 

al.brost5294

Member
Member
Putting new tires on the bike and figured I would clean/inspect/service the rear shock and linkage while the rear wheel is off since it hasn't been done since I've owned the bike. Upon disassembly and cleaning of the linkage, I noticed the needle bearing in the middle bore of the suspension arm was not centered. (See attached pics.) One side is about 3/8 of an inch from the outside edge and the other is about an 1/8 inch. These are pressed in cages so it doesn't move without force. I bought the bike from the original owner and he kept detailed service records - no mention of any work on the linkage - so I have to believe the bike came from the factory like this. In looking at an OEM parts diagram online, it looks like there are supposed to be 2 needle bearings in that bore. (See attached pic circled in red.) Kind of confused - all needle bearings are smooth, tight and not notchy. There is no play in any of the bolts/bores and minimal wear for just shy of 50k miles on the bike. The seals are also in good shape - still pliable with no cracking or damage. Wondering if I'm OK to grease it all up and reassemble the way it is or should I be ordering new bearings, bolt and seals for that middle bore. Kind of wanted the bike back together, off the lift and rideable by the weekend - not waiting for parts. WWCD? (What Would COG Do?)
meanwhile... a couple of years later....
Hi bpdutton; I have the same situation with my recently acquired 2006 C-10. While servicing the linkage I noticed the bearings were not installed as per the factory drawing. I don't have the same level of prior documentation for my bike that you have , but in what I do have there is no mention of servicing the linkage in the notes. I assumed a previous owner mucked it up (I call him 'Red Loctite Man' because there apparently isn't a fastener that's too small or trivial to not need a glob of red loctite - even the spark plugs for the love of God). From yours and other's observations, It appears that a Special Person installed these linkages at the factory. My bike has 43,000 km, and from the shape of the bearings it looks like zero service was ever done because every one of the needles in every bearing is frozen in place. The damage is slight however, as the needles took up secondary duty as a bushing.
 

connie_rider

Member
Member
Al, here is a complete C-10 linkage on Ebay with low miles.
Rather than pay $xxx to Kawasaki for just another bearing, why not just buy this and install on your bike?

NOTE: It sez free shipping, but you could pay for expedited shipping to have it by the weekend.
It will probably still cost less that buying the bearing from Kawasaki (If they have it in stock)

Ride safe, Ted
 

bpdutton

Member
Member
That's a great deal on that linkage with those few miles. As an FYI - all I did with mine was (re)center the bearing, lubed it up and reassembled. 4k miles later and no issues. (y)
 

al.brost5294

Member
Member
Al, here is a complete C-10 linkage on Ebay with low miles.
Rather than pay $xxx to Kawasaki for just another bearing, why not just buy this and install on your bike?

NOTE: It sez free shipping, but you could pay for expedited shipping to have it by the weekend.
It will probably still cost less that buying the bearing from Kawasaki (If they have it in stock)

Ride safe, Ted
It looks like a great deal, but I'm in Canada and ebay has flagged it (from the vendor I guess) as 'won't ship to Canada'. Anyway, the only parts I really need are the bearings, which are not terribly expensive. Shipping across the border has become a Royal PITA lately... stuff does get delivered, but unless one pays for International Expedited (FedEx seems to be the best in this area) you can only guess when the item will show up.
 

tdbru

Member
Member
Well, at least you had 1 bearing. after i bought my '06 C10 I pulled the suspension apart to inspect/clean and there were NO needle bearings. bolts riding on the housings. Fortunately I bought the bike with just 3.6K on the odo. Original owner bought it, got sick and passed away. there were a few hundred on the odo. I helped the 2nd owner load it up after the widow sold it to the second owner. the second owner (pastor of the church i attend) put the remainder of the miles on it before i bought it from him. He is NOT a wrencher. takes his bike to the local shop for service. So i have to believe that it came off the assy line without bearings. The reason i suspect that is that '06 was the last year of production. as far as i know the assy line was in Lincoln, NE and was being closed and production moving back to Japan for the C14. So there may have been parts shortages and perhaps everyone there said "screw it" and just shipped it. Maybe disgruntled line workers didn't install on purpose. But I highly expect it was shipped out of the factory without any needle bearings. Of course they're all there now. So finding a '06 C10 with only 1 or, in my case, no needle bearings sounds like it's more common that one would hope.
-tdbru
 

ONOBob

Member
Member
Well, at least you had 1 bearing. after i bought my '06 C10 I pulled the suspension apart to inspect/clean and there were NO needle bearings. bolts riding on the housings. Fortunately I bought the bike with just 3.6K on the odo. Original owner bought it, got sick and passed away. there were a few hundred on the odo. I helped the 2nd owner load it up after the widow sold it to the second owner. the second owner (pastor of the church i attend) put the remainder of the miles on it before i bought it from him. He is NOT a wrencher. takes his bike to the local shop for service. So i have to believe that it came off the assy line without bearings. The reason i suspect that is that '06 was the last year of production. as far as i know the assy line was in Lincoln, NE and was being closed and production moving back to Japan for the C14. So there may have been parts shortages and perhaps everyone there said "screw it" and just shipped it. Maybe disgruntled line workers didn't install on purpose. But I highly expect it was shipped out of the factory without any needle bearings. Of course they're all there now. So finding a '06 C10 with only 1 or, in my case, no needle bearings sounds like it's more common that one would hope.
-tdbru

We’ll crap, guess I’m gonna have pull my 06 apart. It only has 20k on it. But it “wiggles” a little bit above 65 with any cross wind or turbulence.
Checked steering stem bearings, they feel fine.
😬😬
 

tdbru

Member
Member
ONOBob,
let me know what you see. I hope you don't have any issues. One thing that gave it away when i was inspecting my '06 when i bought it was the grease zerks didn't seem to be sitting in the center of the joints. Hmmm...... that's odd looking..... so if you have no needle bearings, the grease zerks will not be in the center of the joint. with only 1 needle bearing, however, I suspect you won't know until you pull it apart to check and see. unfortunately. Hope you have both needle bearings in each joint.
-tdbru
 

bpdutton

Member
Member
...So i have to believe that it came off the assy line without bearings. The reason i suspect that is that '06 was the last year of production. as far as i know the assy line was in Lincoln, NE and was being closed and production moving back to Japan for the C14. So there may have been parts shortages and perhaps everyone there said "screw it" and just shipped it. Maybe disgruntled line workers didn't install on purpose...
-tdbru
Well, my bike is an '02 so I would hate to think they started this practice 4 years before shutting down the plant. :eek: My rationale for putting it back together with one bearing was simple - it had been that way for almost 50k miles, there was no damage to the bearing, race or bolt, my bike exhibited no handling issues because of it and I wanted to ride that weekend. :cool: I centered the bearing in the bore because that put the hole in the bolt where the grease pushes through from the zerk fitting directly in the middle of the bearing ensuring it got lubricated. And like I said above, I've put 4k miles on the bike since then and have had no issues. Now if there had been no bearings in there it would have been a different story and I think it would have been apparent sometime in the prior 5 years of owning, riding and servicing the bike. The next time it comes apart (if ever) I will make sure I have the bearing(s) beforehand.
 
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