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Old 03-23-2006, 02:09 PM   #141
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Jim, I need to quit being lazy and post some pics of what I built. It's basically the same concept as what's on the larger early 70's trailers. I went and poked around a bunch of them to come up with the design. I could just slide the ply in and it would probably stay in place, but I can't imagine adding a few bolts would hurt anything. I will probably end up going with the metal sheet under the ply, in addition to treating the wood with either POR-15 or something like the marine epoxy. I'll get pics up by this weekend, for sure!
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Old 03-23-2006, 02:11 PM   #142
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Bad News

When I was towing my trailer frame over to the shop to do the welding last week I noticed the tops of the rear tires seemed to by moving "in and out"... I looked at the axle rear axle and it actually appears to be bent!

So, what now?
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Old 03-23-2006, 02:24 PM   #143
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Mine are like that, they look to be intentionally bent upwards just a bit in the center of the axle. I just assumed they were manufactured that way because of the way a torsion axle works.

On the other hand, the two axles on my trialer are the only torsion axles I have ever looked at "close-up".

There's a ton of guys and gals on the forum who know more about this than I do, and I'm sure one of them will "straighten" us out.

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Old 03-23-2006, 02:46 PM   #144
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Originally Posted by Jim & Susan
Mine are like that, they look to be intentionally bent upwards just a bit in the center of the axle. I just assumed they were manufactured that way because of the way a torsion axle works.

On the other hand, the two axles on my trialer are the only torsion axles I have ever looked at "close-up".

There's a ton of guys and gals on the forum who know more about this than I do, and I'm sure one of them will "straighten" us out.

Jim
The axles are arched upward by the manufacturer to set the correct tire geometry. It is perfectly normal. This is another reason why the correct jack point for the axle is the frame mounting plate and not the axle tube itself.
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Old 03-23-2006, 03:22 PM   #145
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If the top of the tire is moving in and out, you have a bent wheel. Check lateral runout of the tire, it should be less than .080", or .040" at the wheel rim.

The bend in the axle is to set proper camber.
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Old 03-23-2006, 08:24 PM   #146
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But... I don't have torsion axles. I have leaf springs. Is this still normal? I only noticed the bend in the rear axle... but there is definitely an upward bow in the middle of it.
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Old 03-23-2006, 08:34 PM   #147
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It's possible that one axle was replaced. The original axle on my '59 was straight, when I replaced it the new one was bent in the middle. Or maybe the axle was bent in an accident.

But the problem remains; if the axle is bent it won't cause the wheel to move in and out. I still think it's a bent wheel. Jack that axle up and spin the wheel by hand, hold your finger against the rim and see if it moves.
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Old 03-23-2006, 10:35 PM   #148
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Originally Posted by ankornuta
But... I don't have torsion axles. I have leaf springs. Is this still normal? I only noticed the bend in the rear axle... but there is definitely an upward bow in the middle of it.
The new axles that I installed on my 1954 Double Door Liner came with a bend in the center upward. I was told that it is a common way to manufacture them. You may notice that most flat bed semi trailers have an upward hump when they are empty, it then flattens out when they are loaded. I think the same theory applies to axles, or that is what Henry formerly of Axis Axles told me.

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Old 03-24-2006, 09:47 AM   #149
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Phew!

Awesome news, thanks everyone! I'll check the wheels for possible bends; they're getting replaced once everything is put back together anyhow. After all of the complications I've run into in this project, the last thing I wanted was a bent axle. I may replace the leaf spring axles with torsion some day... but I didn't feel like having my hand forced on that just yet.
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Old 03-27-2006, 11:22 AM   #150
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POR-15 and other updates

I applied the POR-15 to the frame this weekend. I'd like to mention a few things about it for anyone else going down this path.

1. It is not necessary to sandblast your frame down to bare metal before applying. As a matter of fact, if you do, you'll have to perform an extra step of etching the metal before painting with the POR-15. I used a wirebrush on an angle grinder to take the old paint and rust scaling off the metal first. That's one of the best things about the POR-15 is that it can be applied directly over rust, so long as it's not too flakey.

2. Wear gloves and long sleeves!! That stuff is nasty. Also be sure to wear gloves and long sleeves when using the Marine clean and metal etching substance. Be sure to clean all your metal ahead of time, this is a very important step.

3. Be sure to use the "metal etching" stuff (some kind of weak acid dilution, I think) on any new metal and welds, first. Otherwise the paint won't stick very well.

4. POR-15 dries very slowly in dry climates and faster in more humid climates. I found that to be an odd property of the stuff.

5. Allocate an entire day for this process and start early. The cleaning and painting goes pretty quickly, but you have to wait about two hours after cleaning to allow everything to dry, then paint the first coat, then paint the second coat within four hours of the first coat.

6. When closing the can of POR-15 put a sheet of plastic wrap over the top before putting the lid on. This will help to ensure that you can open the can again in the future.

Also, the gray water holding tank that I hastily ordered doesn't fit the support I built for it. I should have just waited for the tank that I really needed to come in. Oh well, now I have to wait anyhow. Once the tank gets here I can finish up the plumbing and start closing everything back up. I really cannot wait to get the body back on the frame!! And if I can get it done before it starts getting too hot here, all the better.

My dad warned me that building always takes much longer than disassembling. He was dead-on with that...
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Old 03-27-2006, 08:51 PM   #151
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Frame - some before and after/during pics

Here's a picture of my frame before I did any welding or POR-15'ing, and during the process of painting, but after the welding was done. You can make out the new rear cross members and also the sub-frame that I built to support the holding tanks.

Oh, and that steel box that's visible between the axles, above the frame in the "during" picture is the shower pan. I had set it on there to measure for my drain lines going to the rear.
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Old 03-27-2006, 09:08 PM   #152
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ankornuta
Here's a picture of my frame before I did any welding or POR-15'ing, and during the process of painting, but after the welding was done. You can make out the new rear cross members and also the sub-frame that I built to support the holding tanks.

Oh, and that steel box that's visible between the axles, above the frame in the "during" picture is the shower pan. I had set it on there to measure for my drain lines going to the rear.

That's like Deja'vu...
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Old 03-28-2006, 01:39 PM   #153
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Frame looks good. Nice and straight, at least from the angle we're looking at. Good work.
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Old 03-28-2006, 01:48 PM   #154
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That's like Deja'vu...
LOL, how do you mean? Does it remind you of the work that you did?
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