How to Replace Honda Goldwing Front Wheel Bearings

Nervous steering on a motorcycle is never exactly confidence inspiring, and on a big bike like a Honda Goldwing it can be outright alarming. 

If you're noticing a bit of shimmy in the front end of your motorcycle, it's a sure indication that the front wheel bearings need replacing.

You'll need a couple of special tools to complete this job: a bearing remover and a bearing driver. A bearing remover set is expensive, but can be used on many different makes and models of motorcycles, ATVs and UTVs. Or you can purchase a bearing remover tool, which is cheaper but probably won't be compatible for use on multiple machines. Bearing driver sets are much more affordable, and are an essential addition to your toolbox if you regularly work on motorcycles, ATVs and side-by-sides.

Tools and Parts Needed - Honda Goldwing Wheel Bearing Replacement

Tools

  • Ratchet and extensions
  • Assortment of sockets
  • Assortment of Allens
  • Assortment of wrenches
  • T40 Torx
  • Screwdrivers
  • Hammer
  • Bearing remover
  • Bearing driver

Parts 

  • Wheel bearings
  • Dust seal (left)
  • Dust seal (right)

NOTE: The dust seals for the Honda Goldwing GL1800 wheel bearings are different between the left and right sides. The left side requires dust seal (30X47X8) (NOK), which is Honda part # 91253-443-762. The right side requires dust seal (28X42X8) (NOK), which is Honda part # 91257-MAY-003.

Honda Goldwing front wheel bearing replacement

Removing Honda Goldwing GL1800 Front Wheel Bearings

Step 1. Lift and support the front end of the motorcycle so the front wheel is off the ground. Next, anchor down all four corners of the motorcycle to prevent it from falling.

Step 2. Remove the forward half of the front fender, the two shock covers and the rearward half of the front fender (all 5mm Allen bolts).

PRO TIP: Make a note of which bolt came from where because the bolts are different lengths, and knowing where each bolt belongs will make reassembling much simpler later on.

Step 3. Remove the two 12mm caliper mounting bolts, and slide the right front brake caliper off the brake rotor.

Honda Goldwing front brake caliper

Step 4. Remove the dust cap from the bottom of the left front brake caliper. Next, remove the brake pad pin beneath it with a 5mm Allen, and slide the brake pads down and out of the caliper. Remove the 6mm Allen bolt and T40 Torx bolt from the caliper mounting bracket, and slide the caliper off the brake rotor.

Honda Goldwing GL1800 caliper brakes

Step 5. Remove the 22mm axle bolt, and loosen the four 12mm axle pinch bolts (two on each fork).

Honda Goldwing motorcycle fork axle bolts

Step 6. Put a screwdriver through the hole in the axle to use as a handle, then lift the wheel slightly to take the weight off the axle, and pull the axle out from the wheel and forks.

Step 7. Remove the two outer axle spacers from the wheel. The spacers are different on each side, so it's important to note which spacer belongs on which side to reinstall them correctly.

Honda Goldwing front axle spacers

Step 8. Lay the wheel on a couple of pieces of 2x4 lumber to prevent the wheel from resting on the work surface, and the rotor and rim from getting scratched or damaged.

Honda Goldwing front wheel tire

 Step 9. Remove the two dust seals from the wheel, being careful not to damage the wheel itself.

Honda Goldwing front wheel dust seals

Step 10. Put a new wheel bearing on your bearing removal tool, and mark the depth you'll need to set the tool so it will pull the old bearings out. Position the tool over the bearing, then grab the bearing and remove it. 

Honda Goldwing GL1800 front wheel bearing removal

Watch the clip below to see how to perform this step.

Step 11. Remove the central spacer from within the wheel.

Step 12. Either repeat Step 10 to remove the other front wheel bearing, or simply put a socket that's the same size as the wheel bearing over the bearing and hammer the bearing out from the opposite side of the wheel. 

Watch the clip below to see how to perform this step.

Replacing Honda Goldwing GL1800 Front Wheel Bearings

Step 1. Starting on the right side of the wheel, use a bearing driver that is just smaller than the diameter of the bore in the wheel hub but wide enough to sit on the metal outer edge of the wheel bearing, and carefully tap the new wheel bearing into the wheel until it bottoms out. 

Watch the clip below to see how to perform this step.

PRO TIP: Identifying the right and left sides of a Honda Goldwing GL1800 wheel is simple, because the right side has a notched speed sensor ring attached to it around the center of the hub.

Honda Goldwing GL1800 front wheel bearing installation

Step 2. Apply a smear of grease to the inside of the new right side dust seal, and tap the seal into the right side of the wheel until it is flush with the wheel hub.

NOTE: Remember, the dust seals on the Honda Goldwing GL1800 differ from left to right, so make sure you are fitting the correct dust seal. Honda part # 91253-443-762 is the left side dust seal and Honda part # 91257-MAY-003 is the right side dust seal.

Honda Goldwing front wheel dust seal

Step 3. Reinstall the central spacer back into the wheel.

Honda Goldwing front wheel spacer

Step 4. Repeat Step 1 to install the new wheel bearing into the left side of the wheel.

Step 5. Repeat Step 2 to install the new left side dust cap into the left side of the wheel.

Step 6. Replace the two outer axle spacers into the wheel. 

NOTE: Remember, the spacers are different on each side, so you must reinstall them on their correct sides of the wheel.

Step 7. Lightly grease the axle, then position the wheel between the forks and slide the axle back into place from the left side of the wheel. Gently tap the axle until it bottoms out.

Honda Goldwing GL1800 front wheel axle

Step 8. Tighten the two left side axle pinch bolts.

Step 9. Reinstall the axle bolt on the right side of the wheel and torque it to 44 foot-pounds.

Step 10. Tighten the right side axle pinch bolts and torque them to 16 foot-pounds.

Step 11. Go back and loosen the left side axle pinch bolts. Keep an eye on the reference mark on the axle, and pull the fork away from the wheel. Then, push the fork back toward the wheel. Next, set the fork at the mid-point of the lateral travel. This should set the left fork parallel with the right fork. 

Honda Goldwing front wheel bearing replacement

Watch the clip below to see how to perform this step.

Step 12. Tighten the left side axle pinch bolts and torque them to 16 foot-pounds.

Step 13. Reinstall the brake pads into the left caliper, then reinstall the brake pad pin and dust cap and slide the caliper back over the rotor. Reinstall and tighten the 6mm Allen bolt and T40 Torx bolt into the caliper mounting bracket.

Step 14. Slide the right caliper back over the rotor. Reinstall and tighten the two 12mm mounting bolts.

Step 15. Reinstall the rearward half of the front fender, the two shock covers and the forward half of the front fender.

Replacing Honda Goldwing GL1800 Fork Brace

NOTE: The OEM Honda Goldwing fork brace is not adjustable, and therefore can put an unnecessary load on the forks. Now is the ideal time to replace it with an adjustable version, such as the Gen 2 Fork Brace.

Step 1. Remove the old fork brace.

Step 2. Loosen the new fork brace adjustment screws, and remove the brace's end caps.

Step 3. Install the fork brace's center section between the forks, and reinstall the end caps to lock the brace in place. Tighten the center section's adjustment screws.

Honda GL1800 fork brace

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