A trailer hub question (Boat trailer) but probably applies to most

Joined
Jun 19, 2018
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Seattle, Wa USA
Hello. I know there is a lot of knowledge throughout this forum, so I'm hoping someone can set me straight. I've been slowly refurbishing an ez-loader boat trailer. The tongue brake actuator and drum brake hubs were garbage when I bought it, so for now I am converting to a standard no brakes at all configuration to get it rolling, then will add disks later on.
I cannot find a definitive answer regarding the inner bearing/axle seal. Is seated "flush" truly correct, or does it get pressed in a bit further.
Also, should I lightly grease the hub surface to help with seal install or does get pressed in "dry?"
I am doing a normal greased bearing situation, not an oil bath.
I've watched a few youtubes, and looked through what e-trailer says, but was hoping for a definitive answer.
 

Robert Franzke

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Plano Texas
I don't know about your particular trailer, but any inner axle seal I have installed I have always tapped in flush. I sort of use the rim of the hub as a stop to let me know how far to go with the seal. The seal on most applications actually has a surface that the inner bearing can ride against as it moves so as to not tear the seal. Sort of like a small bearing race. From looking at pics of the EZ loader hubs it looks like the inner seals are all rubber without any hard parts on them. Setting it flush keeps the bearing in the correct orientation in the hub against the bearing race without damaging it. You want to tap the seal in. Best way I found is to take a block of wood across the width of the seal, and tap on the wood to drive the seal in. This will stop the seal from going further in than flush of the hub rim. I don't use grease myself to help with the installation and always tap them in dry. When you grease the inner bearing its hard if not impossible to not get some grease around where the outer part of the seal sets in the hub. But I personally don't go out of my way to grease that area. Some folks might put sealer around the edge of the seal to seal it as well as help with install but I wouldn't bother with that. I also usually grease the seal lip where it contacts the spindle. This helps to seat the seal on the spindle when you put the hub on and to prevent tearing it. Most trailer hubs work almost exactly like your FJ80 front hubs if you are familiar with how those go together. HTH.
 
Joined
Jun 19, 2018
Messages
455
Location
Seattle, Wa USA
@Robert Franzke Thanks. I've done some more looking while on here, and it seems that flush is the correct answer. Yay, trailer work tomorrow.
I can't believe I found more than one video where the dude didn't pre-pack the bearings though. Seems like little effort for a lot of security.
 

ntsqd

technerd
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Apr 26, 2007
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5,853
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Upper So. CA
 
 
Flush is what I set them at UNLESS there is a shallow groove worn in the seal surface of the spindle. Then I install them in a different spot.

I do wipe a thin film of grease onto the spindle's seal surface.
 
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