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OK I fixed the problem, but I want to repeat what ZBillster wrote many years ago - it's for people who can't get the back wheel in - which was me two hours ago. I thought I would give this more prominence because I didn't find it through the search function I just stumbled across it. The hard shifting, clunky shifting has been reduced by 90% also by packing the sprocket carrier with plastic...
So... for all the people who can't replace rear wheel, or back wheel won't go in, trouble with back wheel. or people trying to reinstall back wheel, back wheel problems here you go:
(all of the following written by ZBillster)

1. Set the brake caliper off to the side, outside the swing arm.

2. First, we're going to install the axle in BACKWARDS. It's easier to line everything up that way so we can set the wheel at the proper height.

3. Put the wheel kinda in place with chain wrapped around sprocket, with the caliper off to the side. Make sure your chain adjustment sliders are in proper forward position.

4. Grunt the wheel up, slide the axle in from the CHAIN side, till it's flush with the wheel hole on the other side. Tap with rubber mallet if necessary.

5. Now position the caliper hole, slide rotor into calipers (make sure the pads are apart and not compressed), and slide the axle in enough to hold that. The caliper will be OFF the swing arm slider, but don't worry about that right now.

6. Slide the axle all the way in, lining up all the holes.

7. Now that it's in POSITION, we want something to hold it here: I put the piece of scrap wood down with the phone book. The phone book will ideally be a bit too thick. Rip out a few pages at a time till it fits under the wheel snugly.

8. Now slide/tap the axle back out. Roll the wheel forward a bit on the phone book till you can position the caliper PROPERLY on the swing arm slider, with the rotor inside the calipers.

9. Now that the wheel is at the proper height, it should be easier to slide the axle back in from the BRAKE side, lining up the holes along the way.
 

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Nice idea. I had a heck of a time putting my rear wheel back in after removing it, foolishly, to try and replace rear sprocket, with only rear paddock stand. It was hours. Sounds like a smart plan.
 
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