Jerked by a Zerk


Today I spent three hours doing the spring maintenance on my riding mower: oil change, grease job, cleaning out the debris, checking filters, tires, etc. All went well until I got to greasing the front wheel bearings. 

Riding mower

I took the dust cover off of the first hub: no grease zerk. That’s odd. The manual did say not to oil or grease anything that uses a new UHMW plastic bushing. I didn’t SEE plastic bushings, but without dismantling the front wheels I wouldn’t. Still, no grease port: can’t grease it. Move on,

When I was all done I took it back to the barn. As I was backing it in, it occurred to me that perhaps the zerk is on the INSIDE of the wheel. I checked. Sure enough, there it was. Back to the workshop, juggle the gate trying not to let any dogs escape, drag my tools back out.

Looking in from above with the hood up, I wasn’t able to connect the grease gun to the zerk. It seemed the zerk was so far inside the wheel that the rim blocked access to it. I’m gonna need to take the wheel off.

Had I stopped and thought about that for a moment I’d have realized that was stupid: You can’t pump grease into a joint if you take it apart first. But I didn’t. 

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