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Old 11-10-2013, 05:55 PM   #1
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Razinni's Avatar
1977 31' Sovereign
Atlanta , Georgia
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 53
Blog Entries: 1
Officially a 'New' Owner

It's official. I was able to successfully retrieve my 31' from PA to Atlanta. Thanks to everyone for answering my 'Almost a new owner' post. Here is what I learned.

1. You can in fact tow a 31 foot with a 2003 Suburban without anti sway or a WD hitch.. The trailer weighed in at 5503 lbs and the total combined was a little over 12K. It was a bit unnerving and I had to watch my speed but the PO's hitch wasn't set up for my vehicle and we didn't have the resources to connect it.

2. A dual axle AS will work with 3 tires. The PO had told me he had new tires installed. What he didn't tell me is that he had done the installation work himself and failed to tighten lugs properly. Within an hour of the start of my trip on the highway one wheel suddenly broke free of the trailer and narrowly missed a car before passing me and coming to a halt against the rail in the center of the highway. I was able to retrieve the tire and after visiting multiple auto parts stores I was able to purchase new lug BOLTS and re-attach. Needless to say I checked the lugs often on the rest of the trip.

3. All round electrical connections are not the same. After confirming multiple times that I had the right electrical connection I found that the trailers 7 pin connecter and my bladed 7 way connector were not compatible. The only thing I could do was purchase a temp trailer lighting kit for the trip home.

Thanks again to everyone for their advice. I learned a lot.

Here is a picture of the damage caused when the wheel let go.

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"The road goes on forever and the party never ends" - R.E.Keen
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Old 11-10-2013, 06:19 PM   #2
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2012 25' FB Eddie Bauer
Vintage Kin Owner
Virginia Beach , Virginia
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 5,677
Boy, talk about a baptism by fire. Glad you made it.

Sorry about the damage. Keep the faith though. It can be fixed and you know you made it through the first crisis OK.

I send you good Karma for future trips and for finding a great repair facility.


Today is a gift, that's why they call it the present.
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Old 11-10-2013, 06:30 PM   #3
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2014 30' FB FC Bunk
Hoover , Alabama
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 3,140
Man I would have been TICKED -

Lesson I suppose that we use strict checklists when picking up a purchase - check off the box for "check lug nut torque"

Glad you are safe!!

“The atoms of our bodies are traceable to stars that manufactured them...We are not figuratively, but literally stardust.”

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Old 11-10-2013, 08:14 PM   #4
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2013 30' Classic
Greenwood , Mississippi
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 10,240
There are red marks on the lug nuts so you can visually see if the lug nuts have moved/backed off. I already looked at them on 'Geek's new trailer. They should be re-checked after 25-50 miles of travel.
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Old 11-10-2013, 09:13 PM   #5
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2004 28' Safari S/O
Marietta , Georgia
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 1,049
Images: 3
Sorry to hear you had such a trial by fire with your new acquisition. I suffered a somewhat similar event retrieving my first Airstream but from Florida. The PO said he had just had the tires and brakes checked prior to my arrival since I was planning to tow 500+ miles upon pickup.

My trauma came from a valve stem failure around 150 miles into the trip which caused the tire to deflate immediately. The tire shredded and came off the rim while I was on the interstate. The shop had mounted all rubber stems, not the metal shafted version. I got to buy a new tire and four stems at the next exit.

A month after I got home, I got a letter from Discount Tire announcing a "tire valve stem recall" for the batch involved.
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