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Old 09-20-2007, 10:51 AM   #1
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Axle replacement needed? Originality?

The pictures show the axle of my 1959 Traveler. I suspect it's not original, because the spring leaf rear hanger looks more then a bit awkward. As if someone added the brackets to have the clearance needed.
Anyway, because I want brakes, I was thinking of replacing the axle anyway.
When going through junkyards and Craigslist, how can I tell its the right axle for my trailer? And doing so from behind my desk, here, in The Netherlands?

The hydraulic lines you see are coming from the parking brake which is mounted on the tongue. Looks aftermarket to me, but I see it on many other (bigger) trailers too. There are no running brakes at all. And yes, the rubber brake line going through the belly pan looks shaved and will definitely break someday. I want to remove the whole hydraulic system and have a replacement axle with either electric or mechanic brakes.

BTW, it tows just fine. I just did a 6.000 mile road trip through the US.

Regards, Jim.
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Old 09-20-2007, 11:14 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimHoek
The pictures show the axle of my 1959 Traveler. I suspect it's not original, because the spring leaf rear hanger looks more then a bit awkward. As if someone added the brackets to have the clearance needed.
Anyway, because I want brakes, I was thinking of replacing the axle anyway.
When going through junkyards and Craigslist, how can I tell its the right axle for my trailer? And doing so from behind my desk, here, in The Netherlands?

The hydraulic lines you see are coming from the parking brake which is mounted on the tongue. Looks aftermarket to me, but I see it on many other (bigger) trailers too. There are no running brakes at all. And yes, the rubber brake line going through the belly pan looks shaved and will definitely break someday. I want to remove the whole hydraulic system and have a replacement axle with either electric or mechanic brakes.

BTW, it tows just fine. I just did a 6.000 mile road trip through the US.

Regards, Jim.
The setup you describe was the original as used by Airstream. All hyhdraulic brakes went out of style more than 50 years ago.

You can replace your axle setup, with a torsion axle if you wish.

However, in order to do so, you would have to install (weld) an axle mounting plate on each side of the frame.

Andy
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Old 09-20-2007, 11:21 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In
You can replace your axle setup, with a torsion axle if you wish.
However, in order to do so, you would have to install (weld) an axle mounting plate on each side of the frame.
Andy
Reading all the post here, I was kinda getting ready for that...
I do have a good friend who besides being a good friend is a good welder too. He will help me with any welding needed.

Having a 1959/1960 Californian 18 footer, what axle would be suggested (from either manufacturer).

Regards, Jim.
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Old 09-20-2007, 02:10 PM   #4
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Since you are not locked into an exsiting Airstream/Hinschen frame system you can look at Dexter or MoreRide at considerably less cost. Or spec out an axle yourself and go directly to Hinschen.
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Old 09-20-2007, 03:26 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HowieE
Since you are not locked into an exsiting Airstream/Hinschen frame system you can look at Dexter or MoreRide at considerably less cost. Or spec out an axle yourself and go directly to Hinschen.
Howie,

He has a leaf spring axle. I would think that using any torsion axle would take the same effort of determining dimensions.

Bill
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Old 09-20-2007, 05:12 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimHoek
Reading all the post here, I was kinda getting ready for that...
I do have a good friend who besides being a good friend is a good welder too. He will help me with any welding needed.

Having a 1959/1960 Californian 18 footer, what axle would be suggested (from either manufacturer).

Regards, Jim.

Jim.

A 3500 pound torsion axle with 12 inch brakes would work very well for your trailer.

Andy
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Old 09-20-2007, 07:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HowieE
... Or spec out an axle yourself and go directly to Hinschen.
I don't think Henschen deals directly with the public anymore.

They do list a distributor at their website, though...

Tom
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Old 09-20-2007, 09:07 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In
A 3500 pound torsion axle with 12 inch brakes would work very well for your trailer.Andy
Thanks! I've asked Henschen via their web site, but didn't receive a reply yet.
What I would like to know is how to find out which part# to order. Either from Henschen, Dexter or whomever...
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Old 09-20-2007, 09:42 PM   #9
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Why!

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimHoek
Thanks! I've asked Henschen via their web site, but didn't receive a reply yet.
What I would like to know is how to find out which part# to order. Either from Henschen, Dexter or whomever...
Hi Jim, I have to ask. Why get ride of the leaf spring axle? I have about the same setup on the 18-footer and it tows fine and the brakes are in good shape. Seems like alot of money. "If it aint broke don't fit it". I've heared this statment a few times in my life.
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Old 09-20-2007, 09:52 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverleeper
Hi Jim, I have to ask. Why get ride of the leaf spring axle?
It's because of Dutch laws. To have it titled, it has to have running brakes and is not allowed to have a hydraulic parking brake. So, I have to remove the hydraulic parking brake and install a running brake.
I’d rather have a good used axle, but know out of experience finding one could take a long time. And yes, I’d rather keep the spring leafs and only have a new axle. Maybe I’m best of with just the electric brakes as seen here from Dexter. I don’t know yet…
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Old 09-20-2007, 09:59 PM   #11
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Hydraulic

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimHoek
It's because of Dutch laws. To have it titled, it has to have running brakes and is not allowed to have a hydraulic parking brake. So, I have to remove the hydraulic parking brake and install a running brake.
Id rather have a good used axle, but know out of experience finding one could take a long time. And yes, Id rather keep the spring leafs and only have a new axle. Maybe Im best of with just the electric brakes as seen here from Dexter. I dont know yet
Jim, I misseed the hydraulic part. I guess I'm lucky. The 18-footer has electric brakes. Can't you retro fit electric brake assemblies on that axle? I think you can. But, I'm not an axle expert.
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Old 09-20-2007, 10:09 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverleeper
Can't you retro fit electric brake assemblies on that axle? I think you can. But, I'm not an axle expert.
Oh yes, that's possible. There's a good thread about that right here:
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f439...ake-31051.html
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Old 09-20-2007, 10:27 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimHoek
Thanks! I've asked Henschen via their web site, but didn't receive a reply yet.
What I would like to know is how to find out which part# to order. Either from Henschen, Dexter or whomever...
We are the distributor for the Henschen axles for trailers that are older than 20 years.

We don't need any specs or dimensions in order to provide a correct axle for your 59, since we have that information on file.

All we need is the trailer serial number.

However, you will need to add an "axle mounting plate" on each side of the frame in order to properly mount the axle, and a shock stud on each side.

Andy
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Old 09-20-2007, 10:35 PM   #14
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Good find!

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimHoek
Oh yes, that's possible. There's a good thread about that right here:
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f439...ake-31051.html
Jim, Looks like you found the answer. I think the other route is alot of money for little gain. Good luck..
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