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I have a taken the front wheel out of my motorcycle to replace the tyre. When I put the axle back in is it a good idea to grease it? If so what type of grease should I use?

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I would apply a light coating of white lithium grease. It is thin enough that it it won't be wiped off the shaft sliding through the bearings. It also is resistant to getting washed off by rain or routine washing. The light coating of grease should keep the shaft from seizing in the bearings.

  • I agree, and as a rule of thumb. If you have something open enough to do routine maintenance (like grease things), do it. Things like grease costs pennies and will give you many more miles. – Eric Fossum Apr 24 '13 at 16:02
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    +1. Earlier this year, I removed the rear wheel on my Suzuki Boulevard M50 to replace the tire, and had to literally destroy the axle to hammer it out. Reading the forums, it turns out that Suzuki had an assembly guy dozing on the job or something and they forgot to grease the rear axle on pretty much every MY06 bike. It was rusted on there very tight. – Bungle Oct 17 '14 at 23:46
  • Because I do a lot of rainy riding, I use Mobile 1 Synthetic All Purpose grease. It's super tacky and stays well against water (I would argue from my experience, just a bit better than white lithium and with better lubrication than plain white lithium. It too is a Lithium Complex Grease). I just got exposed to Green Grease Waterproof grease which is extremely tacky and Marine specific (It is a mixed complex grease), typically used on the bearings for boat trailers. I would use these alternatives if you tend to ride in all weather conditions. Warning: Green Grease Does not clean out easy. – Jeep Cherokee Rescue Society May 8 '16 at 13:00
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By all means yes. It is a good practice to grease the axle prior installation.

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