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Old 09-21-2013, 06:53 PM   #1
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2010 30' Flying Cloud
Garibaldi Highlands , British Columbia
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Spare tire, long drive

Hi,
I was wondering if anybody here have had to use that spare tire just behind the battery, bellow the trailer.

My first question is: What kind of tool do I need to take it out?
I bough a 2010 Flying cloud used and it didn't came with any tools. Is this kind of tools I have to buy from Airstream Dealer?
Also what do you use to lift the trailer with? (same thing here, it wasn't included with my trailer)

I'm planing on to go for a very long drive down Baja Mexico this Fall and just in case I have a flat i need to be prepare and so far I have no tools.

I'm also thinking of buying a second tire, not sure where I would put that one, still figuring this out.
Had anyone of you have to spare tire for long drive?

thanks for reading!
Mel
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Old 09-21-2013, 07:36 PM   #2
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The tool you need depends on the bracket fasteners on the spare carrier. Mine has two bolts to loosen at the front of the carrier which allows it to hinge down and allows the tire to slide forward. Some people replace these bolts with locking pins or pad locks for security.

I need two adjustable wrenches to remove the spare from the carrier. I also carry a bottle jack, a torque wrench with socket and extension, and a four way lug wrench. I also carry a home made wooden ramp to drive up onto when only one tire goes flat (it is safer than a jack). The bottle jack is used only when two go flat at the same time on the same side.

If those tires are the original 4 year old Goodyear Marathons that came on the trailer when it was new, you might want to consider changing all 5 tires before your trip. You could use these for spare spares.
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Old 09-21-2013, 07:46 PM   #3
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I just returned from my longest trip. Before I leaving, the tire was removed from carrier (with some difficulty) and placed in the front storage compartment. I did not want to be fighting with this on the side of the road.

I also bought a banana (ramp) and joined the Automobile Association (in case of a flat or other emergency - for their roadside assistance).

Made the trip w/o a flat....and I still have those Goodyear Mrathons on the trailer.
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Old 09-21-2013, 09:24 PM   #4
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Welcome!

Spare.... Maybe. Take it down. Learn how to use it. Verify you can actually pull it out.

Check pressure and condition. Still a new trailer, but you DO NOT KNOW the status. Figure it out!

Jacking... Figure it out. Now.

Two or more axles... With TV (tow vehicle) attached, place a ramp of several wood boards which are cut at an angle to create smooth ramp, by the good tire next to the flat one. Back up or drive fathead to roll trailer good tire up. That should lift the whole trailer enough to change tire. Two ramps are needed for three axles.

Single axle... You need a bottle jack capable of lifting trailer. It should fit under the axle mounting plate where it attaches to the frame. DO NOT EVER JACK ON THE AXLE ITSELF BECAUSE THIS WILL RUIN IT $2-3000 fix.

It needs to fit under the plate with a FLAT tire. So, measure the height from ground to your tire rim. That is the distance you need under axle mount plate before it touches the jack, plus, add the distance you wheel drops when you jack in the driveway. You will need that amount of stroke from the jack to get your new tire on.

Learn to properly torque lug nuts and bring spares.
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Old 09-22-2013, 04:51 AM   #5
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thank you guys for this informations! i'm taking notes and I'll do my homework
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Old 09-23-2013, 08:20 PM   #6
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I've needed it; the first time was on our second trip with the trailer no less. (Turns out the tires weren't 3 years old, they were 8 years old!) I've had it on the trailer twice since then when we damaged tires, but both times I discovered the problem at home rather than on the road.

Our spare tire carrier just has a cotter pin/clip keeping the bracket closed. On the road I jacked it up with blocks under the other tire since I have a dual axle trailer. At home I used a bottle jack. Don't forget to loosen the lug nuts before raising that wheel into the air...
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Old 09-24-2013, 08:31 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwf View Post
Welcome!

Spare.... Maybe. Take it down. Learn how to use it. Verify you can actually pull it out.

Check pressure and condition. Still a new trailer, but you DO NOT KNOW the status. Figure it out!

Jacking... Figure it out. Now.

Two or more axles... With TV (tow vehicle) attached, place a ramp of several wood boards which are cut at an angle to create smooth ramp, by the good tire next to the flat one. Back up or drive fathead to roll trailer good tire up. That should lift the whole trailer enough to change tire. Two ramps are needed for three axles.

Single axle... You need a bottle jack capable of lifting trailer. It should fit under the axle mounting plate where it attaches to the frame. DO NOT EVER JACK ON THE AXLE ITSELF BECAUSE THIS WILL RUIN IT $2-3000 fix.

It needs to fit under the plate with a FLAT tire. So, measure the height from ground to your tire rim. That is the distance you need under axle mount plate before it touches the jack, plus, add the distance you wheel drops when you jack in the driveway. You will need that amount of stroke from the jack to get your new tire on.

Learn to properly torque lug nuts and bring spares.
Don't forget, chock the wheels on the opposite side. Don't want the trailer rolling off the jack or off the ramp(s) while you're struggling with the tire.
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Old 09-27-2013, 03:25 PM   #8
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Oh.....and raise the tongue high....before removing flat. Very little room under there with trailer hitched and level.

Bob
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Old 09-27-2013, 05:44 PM   #9
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Along with the above items needed to change a flat tire I carry a plug kit. Several years ago I had a nail in a trailer tire and was able to plug it without the need to remove the tire. Some don't like / trust the plugs but I've done it many times and never had a plug fail. If you're going to carry it you got to learn how to use it but I wouldn't travel without it.
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Old 09-28-2013, 12:08 AM   #10
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What a great idea for the plug kit! I'll get one for sure! thanks!!
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Old 09-28-2013, 07:33 AM   #11
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This is one of the better kits on the market:
Pocket Tire Plugger Kit - AutoSport Catalog
The mushroom-shaped plugs flare out against the inside of the tire when you insert them to provide a better seal. I've used this type of plug ever since I worked in my dad's service station as a teenager, and never had one fail in over a hundred plugs used, including a couple on my own vehicles. I do not trust and will not use so-called "string" plugs, but I always carry mushroom plug kits in each of my vehicles.

Plugs should never be considered a permanent fix; they're no substitute for a proper patch applied from the inside. But as a way to get back to civilization where you can get the tire fixed, plugs can't be beat.
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Old 09-28-2013, 08:34 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by polarlyse View Post
Along with the above items needed to change a flat tire I carry a plug kit. Several years ago I had a nail in a trailer tire and was able to plug it without the need to remove the tire. Some don't like / trust the plugs but I've done it many times and never had a plug fail. If you're going to carry it you got to learn how to use it but I wouldn't travel without it.
I also carry a plug kit in my TV.If you have a flat that can be plugged you will need some way to pump the flat tire back up after plugged which means you need a compressor to blow your tire back up and you need a generator to run your compressor. You can buy those little cheap compressors that plug into the lighter recepticle but it probably won't last long enough to blow up the tire before it burns up (they are great for lawn mower tires or bicycles but not designed to blow up car tires) The amount of space you need to carry all this you are probably better off to carry a second spare instead. I have actually had to replace both tires on same side at the same time before. Never know what lies waiting in the road just to kill your tires.
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Old 09-28-2013, 08:54 AM   #13
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I've used the Stop-n-go plugger several times and it works fine ... you might want to practice with it once on a scrap tire, so you can see what happens inside the tire when you use it. One trick to these is to use pliers (not included in the stop-n-go kit, but in your tool box, right?) and try very hard to pull the "mushroom" head back out of the tire once the plug has been inserted. That will help to insure that the head is seated against the inside wall of the tire, so it won't leak. If this is done, they work fine.

And note that some of the 12volt compressors work just fine. BUT, those that do are not the cheapo $25 ones - they're pretty expensive. I think mine was maybe $120. But it's pretty cheap as insurance goes. Several threads on this here on the Forums. Also, if you use one of these, you probably want to tap into the tow vehicle's electrical system and also likely will want to keep the engine running so the alternator can keep up with the current drain. They have pretty high amperage draws. Do make sure AHEAD OF TIME that you can reach both a 12volt power outlet (to get electricity) AND the trailer tires (to deliver the air) before you head out!

Finally, at least on my trailer, no tools are needed to get the spare free ... but as pointed out, it's a pretty tight fit, so once again, give it a go before you find yourself along the side of the road on a dark (and always stormy) night.
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Old 09-28-2013, 09:01 AM   #14
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We have lots of experience towing our AS in Mexico. We did tow a HiLo from San Diego to Cabo San Lucas many years ago.
I would replace the ST tires on the trailer with appropriate load range P or LT tires. If your trailer is triple axle, you can probably make this change without changing wheels. We have made this replacement on our 25 Safari after serial blowouts with ST tires. Rough roads and high temperature take a toll on ST tires. The roads in Baja and all over Mexico are rougher than the U.S. I have had axle and mechanical problems with my HiLo and on a wood framed Nash travel trailer. No problems with the AS as the suspension is durable and well designed. You can count on warm temperatures South of Mulege.
There are frequent tire repair stands all over Mexico. If the tire is punctured as opposed to blown out, it can be capably and cheaply repaired.
If you change to automotive tires, you can get buy with one spare. Since changing to Michelin tires, I have had no tire problems towing on rough roads and in hot weather.
My spare carrier drops when you pull the pin. I have to jack up the trailer with the tongue jack to get clearance to pull the spare.
I have a hydraulic jack and tools for my tow vehicle which I use on the AS. I recommend one of those big crossed lug wrenches as trailer lug bolts are torqued tight.
If you are disabled by the side of the road, you can count on an able bodied person stopping to help, expecting only a modest tip. You should know the procedure for a tire change so you can direct.
There are Green Angels whose job it is to help disabled motorists but they are spread thin.
Good luck on your trip.
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