View Full Version : Need help with pilot bearing problems

09-01-2006, 09:41 PM
I am changing the clutch in my 95 SC. It currently has a wrecked needle type pilot bearing. The kit I bought has a solid brass bushing for a pilot bearing. I have the following issues/questions and would greatly appreciate any info you can provide:

1. Is a brass bushing an acceptable replacement for the stock needle bearing, or is the kit incorrect?

2. How does the stock needle bearing come out? I've tried about everything I can think of.

3. The stock pilot looks like it might come out in two places, one is just the thin inner bearing (about 3/4 inch o.d.), or a place a little further out which is about 1.5 inches o.d.

The brass bucking looks to be the bigger diameter...

Hopefully one of you has done this job and can shine some light on this for me. Thanks again.

09-01-2006, 10:18 PM
The brass one is just fine but the hard part is to get the old bearing out. Most often some grease and a metal rod the same size as the hole in the bearing works best. You simply put grease inside the hole and tap the rod in and it should come out. If it is badly dammaged you will need a slide hammer- dent puller. Drill a hole in it and thread the hammer in and tap it out. To make sure you have the right bearing just slip it onto the shaft of the tranny.

09-01-2006, 11:45 PM
Slide hammer, you can rent them free at autozone. The brass bushing is what I'm told, for modified and high performance. I was never told why but I never noticed any difference between the 2. Just make sure you put some high temp grease where the input shaft contacts the bushing, not too much or it will spray onto your clutch and cause it to slip.

09-01-2006, 11:54 PM
I am not a fan of the bearing. I like the bushing for the following reason. A bearing requires grease. When a clutch slips, it creates dust. The dust gets into the bearing and eats up the end of the input shaft. Use the dry bushing and some stuff gets in there still, but it does not work against the bearing and the shaft and continue to run against the needle on it. I have seen MANY input shafts that are all funked up from the bearings. They once the bearing starts to fall apart, it continues to grind into the input shaft. Think about it...


09-02-2006, 12:47 AM
Verrrrry good point. I'll be using bushings for now on.

09-05-2006, 11:45 AM
I got the cheap pilot bearing from autozone (12 bucks or so) and it sucks.

They can order the Timken one. It's make in the USA (not China) and looks just like the one Ford sells.

09-05-2006, 03:06 PM
try autozone too for the pilot bearing removal tool...that plus a side hammer will do it......a couple good whacks with a 13lb side hammer worked for me :p .

Kevin Varnes
09-05-2006, 03:25 PM
GM used to use a bushing for regular duty and on later applications and heavy duty applications used a bearing. I've always used a bearing when available and haven't had any problems. As mentioned get a high quality bearing not some cheap off shore part.

The first time I did the clutch in my Cougar at 160k miles was probably the first time the pilot bearing had been removed. The grease trick did nothing but get grease all over. The slide hammer didn't do much of anything. I wound up drilling the bearing in several strategic areas and removing it in pieces. Otherwise I've had good luck with the slide hammer.

09-05-2006, 03:29 PM
The Grease trick worked great for me. I had a piece of hard plastic that fit perfect in the center of the bearing. Smacked the plastic with a hammer and the bearing popped right out.

09-05-2006, 04:38 PM
mine had the roller type bearing and i replaced it with the brass looking one...and so far no probs. i used a slide hammer to get mine out