SJ410 backing plate modification
This is a fairly popular modification to Suzuki Samurais which has several benefits. For one, it makes for less bulky spares by removing the large diameter original Samurai backing plate which is normally trapped between the end of the axle and the bearing. More importantly it makes axle replacement much simpler and quicker and eliminates the need to open the hydraulic brake system when having to remove the axle. In order to do this modification, it is necessary to remove the original Samurai backing plate from the axle. This will require cutting off the wheel bearing and removing the race and bearing retainer. We suggest using a die grinder and cut-off wheel. When the Samurai backing plate is removed, remove the 4 bolts by tapping them out with a hammer. Then the hole must be enlarged to 3″. A 3″ hole saw is the cleanest way of doing this but it can be done – if you are careful – with a torch, plasma, or sabre-saw. Now the bearing will be able to pass through the hole in the backing plate. The SJ410 backing plate can be used in two ways. By installing it on the axle first in its original form – before installing the new wheel bearing and retainer OR by cutting a notch out of one section giving it a horseshoe shape enabling it to fit OVER the axle (which is even more convenient) and it will still retain the axle and bearing equally as well. Install the 4 bolts that were removed from the Samurai backing plate into the SJ410 backing plate. There are tabs on the SJ410 backing plate which can be bent over the heads of the bolts in order to keep them in place. Now the backing plate can stay right with the axle housing and the axle can be pulled out through the hole. The 4 bolts pass right through the 4 holes in the original Samurai backing plate and into the axle housing flange. This sandwiches the original Samurai backing plate in place and now the axle and bearing are retained by the small SJ410 backing plate.