Juju

I have purchased a rear wheel bearing kit for my 74 Super beetle. I also purchased a Bentley Service manual. The manual does not show a description of rear wheel bearing removal and installation.  I would like to know if both the inner and outer bearings can be removed from the outside of the wheel or does the CV shaft  have to be removed  to get the innner bearing out?  Also there is chamferred ring sleeves in the axle and I would like to know the proper placement of those rings I have looked through the internet for a picture or exploded view of the bearing assembly, with no luck, so if anyone has access to a picture I appreciate your help.

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MY72BUG
Hi juju; it's Dan in Goderich.   The best picture that I could find was in the " Beetle Owners Workshop Manual "  ( Autobook # 760 by Kenneth Ball    ISBN 85147 / 7976 )  On page 89 they show a complete exploded view of the rear suspension and double joint rear axel.  Other books mostly dwell on servicing the constant velocity joints and give short shrift to the inner and outer bearings as they get minimal wear by comparison with the drive shaft CV joints.  Anyway, looking at the diagram I cannot see any way that the inner bearing of the diagonal arm assembly can be removed without first removing the drive shaft assembly.  The outer bearing is on one side of the diagonal arm and the  inner is on  the other side.   The  removal of the drive shaft will permit the  " stub shaft "  to be slipped to the inside once the outer bearing is removed.  Point of concern:  The Haynes book in turn describes the process as involving the removal of the whole diagonal arm assembly in order to have a machine shop press out the offending bearings.  This would, I hope, be a worst case scenario.  Look on the bright side - this will be a chance to inspect, clean and regrease the CV's which are more often the culprit in wierd rear end bearing noises.  Drive shaft removal just involves removal of the Allen or Torx bolts from the two attaching collars and then carefully lowering the drive shaft.  This is covered in all of the manuals.  Just hope that the rust demons have not welded the collar bolts in place.  A judicious dose of " Release-All " and heat should save the day.  Good luck.   MY 72BUG     Dan
I'd rather have a partial bottle in front of me than a partial frontal lobotomy.
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Ryan

You do need to unbolt the outboard CV joint from the stubaxle.  The bolts are either allen or triple square, not Torx even though they look alike.  Use the right tool or you're very likely to stip the bolts out and make the job 10x harder.  With the CV out of the way, use a deadblow hammer (big rubber mallet) to knock the stub axle in towards the tranny.  It should come out pretty easily.  The outer bearing (wheel side) is self explanatory with the drums removed.  Remove the bearing retainer (four bolts) and it should come right out.  The inner bearing is held in place with a C-clip that can be hard to see if there's dirt and grease built up in the bearing housing.  With the C-clip gone, use a drift to slowly work the bearing out towards the tranny.  You'll need to hit it from the wheel side.  Installation is the reverse.  --Ryan

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Juju

Thanks Dan and Ryan for the help on this one.  I tried the CV joint removal with a 6 mm Allen wrench and as you said Ryan, it will not work.  I bought the 8mm 12 pt Torx type driver that is not Torx but similar. ( Torx are 6 pt drivers).  I put penetrating oil on the bolts the day before I worked on it and they all came out with no damage. I did not look at the old bearings to see if they are pitted because they have over 100000 miles on 'em and I had the new ones ready to go.  The noise I had, I am not sure if its CV or bearing yet. I spin the wheel and no noise but its not under load, and it better not be noisy since they are brand new.  I have the drive shaft on my bench and I will review the condition of the CV joints next. Anyway with you guys input it made the job go easy so thanks again.  

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