front axle binding?

M & J Mason masonjs at
Sun Jul 22 15:54:53 PDT 2012

When I re and re the wheels on a bike with a centre stand I use a 2nd jack. 
I have a car jack from an Olds Vista Cruiser that lost its life in a local 
demolition derby.  I place the jack under the exhaust manifold at the front 
of the engine.  I place a short piece of wood on top of the jack.  I raise 
the jack just enough to hold the wood in place then remove the axle from the 
front wheel.  Then I raise the jack about 2 inches to remove the wheel and 
tire from under the fender.  When I'm replacing the front wheel I can raise 
or lower the wheel in small increments to put the f#$@K&n axle in place.
Doing the rear wheel I place the jack in the same position but it doesn't 
get used until I'm replacing the wheel.  I get the wheel in under the 
fender, get the chain, brakes and spacers in place the use the jack to align 
the various openings to accept the axle.
I will admit this is a hell of a lot easier to write then it is to do.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Drew Blanchard" <drewblanchard at>
To: "Jim Mason" <MASONJS at>
Sent: Sunday, July 22, 2012 4:14 PM
Subject: front axle binding?

>I feel like a real newbie for asking this question, but I'd rather be safe
> than sorry.
> Just had new tires installed (Dunlop Roadsmart IIs) and had a helluva time
> getting the front wheel back on the bike.  After much wailing and gnashing
> of teeth (and more than a few choice profanities, and maybe a wrench or 
> two
> hurled across the garage), I finally got everything lined up, and hand
> tightened the front axle.  After the frustrations I experienced, I figured
> I ought to spin the front wheel a few times to see how smoothly everything
> rotated.  Problem is, the front wheel stops almost as soon as I release 
> it.
> I haven't reinstalled the front calipers yet, so I assumed this would
> free-wheel for a while, but it doesn't.  I put a bit of white lithium
> grease on the axle before I installed it, too.  I can't say for certain 
> how
> smoothly or easily the wheel spun before I removed it, but my instincts 
> say
> it was moving freely before.
> Thoughts?  At this point, I figure I'll have to remove and reinstall the
> axle (much as I don't want to repeat the annoying process) but I'm not 
> sure
> what I need to do differently.
> Drew in VT
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