Remove a pilot bearing with bread

This is how you use bread to remove a pilot bearing

The Boost Brothers have put together a …unique tutorial. The pair are currently wrenching on a Subaru WRX. An old pilot bearing needs to come out, and that usually requires a slide hammer. It’s a bearing that’s in a position where you can’t really get to the back of it to pop it out. Unless you have a specific tool, however, and this tool is actually readily available and not expensive at all.

It’s a piece of bread.

Paired with an appropriately sized wooden dowel, the combination of bread and hammer-supplied pressure result in an easy way to remove a sticky bearing. Ball up bits of the bread. You mash it into the hole in the center of the bearing. The dowel and hammer jam it all in there. This forces the bread to push on the back of the bearing. It starts to move forward, and eventually it winds up forced from its home.

The compacted bread is easily removed. Any remaining bits can be cleaned up with a bit of brake cleaner and a microfiber towel.

This is insane. This is genius. We love it.

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11 responses to “This is how you use bread to remove a pilot bearing”

  1. 0A5599 Avatar

    I wanted to buy the special tool, but I didn’t have enough bread to pay for it.

  2. I_Borgward Avatar

    That’ll work. I’ve used thick grease in place of the bread, but the priniciple is the same, if not as palatable.

    Some say that bread is just raw toast.

    1. Sjalabais Avatar

      The nexus between bread and cars is fairly thin, but German engineering has got you covered.

      1. 0A5599 Avatar

        That’s the greatest thing since sliced bread.

        Ironically, much like a modern toaster, the usual way to deal with a defective BMW out of warranty is to replace it with a new one.

        1. nanoop Avatar

          True for the complicated ones, but the bread and butter models tend to last.

    2. Fuhrman16 Avatar

      This trick also works fine with wet bits of paper towels. It’s a bit less messy than grease at any rate.

      1. outback_ute Avatar

        Grease would be less compressible than bread or wet paper towels

  3. mdharrell Avatar

    The bronze pilot bushing in my former ’37 Plymouth was so firmly seized in place after a presumably large number of decades of service that I could not remove it intact. The grease-and-dowel method failed, the try-tapping-it-inwards-first method failed, the just-go-get-the-proper-puller method failed, so I finally resorted to cutting a radial slot through it using an unmounted hacksaw blade and, of necessity, very many very short strokes. That was a fun day.

    1. outback_ute Avatar

      Same here but I used a file. Don’t remember how long it took, but a while.

  4. Jordan Avatar

    haha, That’s actually incredible!
    Guess I know what to do with my bread before it gets moldy 😉

    Will any microfiber towel work? Or does it need to be for cars?