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Old 03-19-2006, 08:50 PM   #1
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1973 31' Sovereign
Maryville , Tennessee
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'73 Sovereign Axle & Hubcaps

I am looking for some opinions.

1. Has anyone purchase hubcaps off Ebay-there are two type typically listed: ( seller chris48866 type 1 VINTAGE AIRSTREAM CROME FULL HUBCAPS SET 4 MINT RARE ) and also (15" STAINLESS STEEL FULL MOON WHEELCOVERS)

2. What is the correct original hupcap and what is the best source?

3. Any recommendations on replacement axles including installation in Knoxville, TN (Axis or Dexter, Etc.)

4. I pull with an F250 Powerstroke-should I upgrade to disc brakes when I change my axles.

5. What tools would I need to change axles myself?
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Old 03-19-2006, 09:05 PM   #2
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I can answer a couple of your questions.
At this time, there are two replacement axle manufacturers that are "bolt on". Axis is one, and Henschen is the other. Dexter axles will have to have the brackets cut off your old axles, and welded onto your new ones.
Axis axles are available direct from the manufacturer, and Henschen axles need to be ordered through Inland RV. There has been enough written here on the forums about which is better, which is cheaper, etc, to fill an encyclopedia, so I won't start another discussion about that here. Just do a forum search for "axles", and you will have enough reading material for days, if not weeks.
As far as the brakes, the disc brakes perform a lot better, but it is not so much a simple "bolt on" installation. And they are in no way cheap. So, your trailer brakes will work acceptably with the electric drum brakes, but unless you are really mechanically (and financially) gifted, I would put drum brakes back on.
As far as what you would need to install your axles yourself, you would need:
1- A strong helper.
2- A good floor jack.
3- A set of ramps to move your coach up onto, one axle at a time, so the one you are replacing hangs clear for removal.
4- A good set of hand tools (wrenches, screwdrivers, etc). Air tools and compressor are preferred, but not necessary.
5- New mounting bolts and nuts, as well as new wire nuts for tht eelectrical connections for the electric brakes.
6- New shocks. Now is the time to replace them, while everything is apart.
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Old 03-19-2006, 10:44 PM   #3
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1975 31' Sovereign
1973 27' Overlander
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trevisgardne
I am looking for some opinions.
...
3. Any recommendations on replacement axles including installation in Knoxville, TN (Axis or Dexter, Etc.)
4. I pull with an F250 Powerstroke-should I upgrade to disc brakes when I change my axles....
I have seen a recent post that Axis will no longer do installation. You will see many positive posts about Dexter installations.

I am happy with the Axis axle I received this week; installation in two weeks (sorry, am on another trip in the interim) will tell the whole story.

I am putting electric brakes on this axle, which will go on an 18' Caravel. If everything goes OK, I have the parts for a disc brake for the same axle and I will measure those to assure myself they will fit within my wheels and wheel well on my 27' Overlander. If so, that one gets the dics. All this will be covered in the "new axis axle" thread, as I get more done.

I tow with an F-250 diesel. I've never had a problem getting up or down the mountains of Colorado, but I am way cautious when I get to the top of the pass (start very slow, like 50). I usually can get down under 70 mph with overdrive off. If it looks really steep, to hell with those behind me and I shift down to 2nd and go down at 45. Never-the-less, I'm still going to put the discs on the Overlander. Why? Because city traffice is the worst possible case--to darn much stop and go and inattention, etc.
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Old 03-20-2006, 03:49 AM   #4
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1975 31' Sovereign
1980 31' Excella II
Sprung Leak , North Carolina
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I went and looked at your hubcap listing, neither one of those is the "correct" ones for a 70's vintage trailer...They should look like the ones on This Trailer. However you can use whatever you choose and alloy wheels are not out of the question, they were an option. A PSD is going to have plenty of power for a vintage unit.

Aaron
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Old 03-20-2006, 08:15 AM   #5
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1971 25' Tradewind
Austin , Texas
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I have the full wheel covers. The biggest disadvantave of them is they must be removed to check air pressure in the tires. There is no opening for the valve stem.

Otherwise the look fine.

- Mark
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Old 03-21-2006, 05:55 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overlander63
Dexter axles will have to have the brackets cut off your old axles, and welded onto your new ones.
I don't understand this statement - could you explain in a little more detail. I think Dexter is also a good alternative. With the proper information Dexter could easily build a bolt in replacement.

No flames intended!

Please inform,
Axleman
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Old 03-21-2006, 06:03 AM   #7
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1993 21' Sovereign
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Quote:
Originally Posted by axleman
I don't understand this statement - could you explain in a little more detail. I think Dexter is also a good alternative. With the proper information Dexter could easily build a bolt in replacement.

No flames intended!

Please inform,
Axleman
Henry, I got this direct from the Dexter rep at the Florida State rally. They will be happy to sell us the correct axles for our coaches, but the will not mount brackets on them. I have forgotten the man's name, but he couldn't be hard to track down, as he weighs about 400 pounds, and gets around in a wheelchair. He also stated that Dexter used to supply many parts to Axis for their axles, but they no longer do that.
Also not trying to start another wildfire, as axles seem to be a hotly contested topic.
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Old 03-22-2006, 08:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overlander63
Henry, I got this direct from the Dexter rep at the Florida State rally. They will be happy to sell us the correct axles for our coaches, but the will not mount brackets on them. I have forgotten the man's name, but he couldn't be hard to track down, as he weighs about 400 pounds, and gets around in a wheelchair. He also stated that Dexter used to supply many parts to Axis for their axles, but they no longer do that.
Also not trying to start another wildfire, as axles seem to be a hotly contested topic.
Terry,

You mean, "shock brackets" - I thought you were talking about the mounting brackets - doh!

You are correct sir - that slipped by me. Dexter will build a complete bolt in axle minus the shock brackets!

I wonder - now that Dexter is the axle supplier to Airstream if they would consider changing their minds? That might be a worthy question for the Dexter R&D group. Dexter has the largest group of Engineers of any American axle manufacturer - they also know the design of the bracket - I wonder!

Dexter started Axis Products - if you didn't already know that - many years ago. It was called LaSalle Axle then.

Best Regards,
Henry
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