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Old 02-04-2015, 09:30 AM   #1
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Long-term Parking, bad stabilizers, old tires!?!

Newbie here. I'm looking to park my 1973 29'Ambassador for MONTHS at a time. The tires are road-worthy, but old! OF the original 4 stabilizers, only front-curbside and back-roadside stabilizers are there, but only the back one works. (front is very broken-off)

I'm thinking I'd like to use jacks (or jack stands??) in strategic places to take some pressure off the tires since i'm parking longer term. is that a good idea? where do i put the jacks? Do i need to remove the broken stabilizer?

Any input on this would be very helpful!
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Old 02-04-2015, 09:47 AM   #2
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Stabilizers on an Airstream are just that, stabilizers. They are intended to keep the trailer from bouncing on the suspension while moving around. They are by no means intend to lift trailer weight off of the tires or or level the trailer.

The bottom line is that you do not need the stabilizers at all if the trailer movement doesn't bother you. Some folks never put their stabilizers down when camping.

You say the tires are old. How old are we talking? Once tires reach the ten year mark, it's not a good idea to take the trailer out on the road with them. You would be courting disaster.

You could use jacks to fill in for missing stabilizers. They should be placed in the same spot as the original stabilizers were. Using the jacks to take the weight off of the tires could result in torquing the frame and causing problems.

Brian
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Old 02-04-2015, 11:45 AM   #3
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Old is not road worthy ( tire tread means nothing )

I used scissor jacks before I got two additional stabilizers. Bottle jacks leak after a short time. Also the ground compacts. I echo what Moosetags said.
If your trailer raises when you are raising jacks or stabilizers….you went too far.
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Old 02-04-2015, 11:48 AM   #4
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For winter storage, I put mine on jack stands...4 of them located right and left/front and rear of the axle plate. Tires off the ground.
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Old 02-04-2015, 01:02 PM   #5
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When I changed out my axles this is where I placed the jack stands.

I used a floor jack between the tires to lift the trailer with the flange.

Note : in the last picture the square piece of aluminum riveted to the under belly is where one would place a stabilizer jack.

Second note : the first picture is my hovercraft conversion
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Old 02-04-2015, 01:10 PM   #6
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apples and oranges

Jacking up your trailer for repairs is different that long term storage.

And just because someone does something, it doesn't mean it is healthy for the trailer.
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Old 02-04-2015, 01:16 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by mandolindave View Post
Jacking up your trailer for repairs is different that long term storage.

And just because someone does something, it doesn't mean it is healthy for the trailer.
Huh??? I don't think anyone is advocating using the stabilizers...not sure what you mean????
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Old 02-04-2015, 01:19 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by mandolindave View Post
Jacking up your trailer for repairs is different that long term storage.

And just because someone does something, it doesn't mean it is healthy for the trailer.
This I have to hear !
Where would you support the Airstream for storage or repair ?
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Old 02-05-2015, 10:16 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Glenritas View Post
Note : in the last picture the square piece of aluminum riveted to the under belly is where one would place a stabilizer jack.
Okay, I've got to call foul here, even if I am a relative newb. Both my original 1974 owner's manual as well as the shop manual clearly state that those marked pads are JACKING points, NOT stabilizer locations. Also, there's only ONE set of pads, behind the axle. If they were for stabilizers, there should be two sets, one at either end.

That said, that pad location on my trailer doesn't make much sense either way, as it's right smack in the middle between any cross members, and the C-channel frame rail is bent because of a PO jacking there without any blocking. Don't know if the stabilizers are original to the trailer, or if the installation is typical, but whoever did the install did it by torching a hole through the axle support! As I'm in the process of a shell off resto due to frame issues, I'll be addressing this when I rebuild. But in the meantime, can we NOT put out opinions masquerading as facts? Thanks.

Dave
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Old 02-05-2015, 12:12 PM   #10
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You should have no problem, except sinking into soft ground, with jack stands under the axle close to the spring pad.
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Old 02-05-2015, 03:08 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by daved20319 View Post
Okay, I've got to call foul here, even if I am a relative newb. Both my original 1974 owner's manual as well as the shop manual clearly state that those marked pads are JACKING points, NOT stabilizer locations. Also, there's only ONE set of pads, behind the axle. If they were for stabilizers, there should be two sets, one at either end.

Dave
The point is if you can Jack at that point you could also stabilize at that point.

One doesn't have to 'mount' a stabilizer jack but its a good location to place one.

AS put the plate there to make it obvious where to jack the trailer .

Lifting the trailer or stabilizing has to be done on the frame rail.
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Old 02-06-2015, 10:26 AM   #12
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Actually, and again, I'm going by my AS here, you can't put a stabilizer there, at least not the usual BAL's, as there's no cross member to carry the inboard end of the jack. Mine are secured to the cross member with J-bolts through the belly pan. I've seen a version that spans the frame, but I suspect even those should be placed so that there's a cross member to add additional support.

So this brings up an important question. IS my AS typical re: the marked location of the jack pads? Like I said before, it seems odd to me that they would have indicated the jacking point at a spot almost dead center between any cross members, relying just on the C-channel to carry the load.

And just to beat a dead horse a little bit more , my main point was that the owner's manual and the shop manual are both very clear about the reason for those marked jacking points, and that reason IS jacking, NOT stabilizing. There's even a cute little diagram in my owners manual showing the relative locations, with the key being specific as to stabilizers vs. hydraulic jack.

My apologies to the OP for hijacking this thread, but I've seen too much of the back and forth re: the purpose of the marked jacking points. Someone said it before me, but I think the confusion is due to the (incorrect) term, stabilizing jack. A jack is a lifting device, a stabilizers purpose is to keep the coach from bouncing around on the suspension when you move around inside. Later.

Dave
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Old 02-06-2015, 03:51 PM   #13
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Placing a stabilizer and mounting a stabilizer are to different things.

Placing a jack on the square plate location is placing it on the frame rail/"C" channel .

Placing a stabilizer on the square plate location so the flats of the BAL stabilizer are parallel to the frame rail/"C" channel is the same as placing a Jack there.

The stabilizers don't have to be mounted to the trailer to work.
But for convenience they usually are. If you what to mount them be sure they are on a frame rail/"C" channel.
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Old 02-06-2015, 04:23 PM   #14
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Here is an upside down view of an Airstream chassis . The tech's hands are over the Frame rail/"C" channel . This is the the main structure of the chassis.

This is what is hidden by the underbelly skin. This is why AS put the aluminum square there so you could find the frame rail/"C" channel to place the jack. It also makes it easier to find the frame rail/"C" channel to place a stabilizer .

Again if you want to mount a stabilizer it has to be on the frame rail/"C" channel.
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