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Old 06-06-2004, 02:24 PM   #29
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It's definitely easier when using bare axles. I had complete axles, and the extra offset weight of the drums and brakes made the job a bit of a wobbler.
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Old 06-28-2004, 09:54 AM   #30
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Question for the axle experts out there. Andy especially.

I have completed the change out of my trashed axles with new ones. I opted for the 3200 lb. capacity axles and added torsion arm angle. For a little background info, I have replaced the shocks, brakes, bearings, races, wheels, tires, and essentially have all new running gear. The installation was straight forward and amazingly simple, being that I did it without a set of second hands.

Now that I have set the trailer back down on level ground, the height of the wheel in regards to the wheel well, is not up where I anticipated it being, based on all of the other pictures I have seen of trailers with "good axles." While it is definitely way up from where it was, I am curious if the older trailers had a lower profile in general. From perusing thousands of photos of Airstreams, I have noticed that from 74' on, the trailers seemed to sit higher. Is this the case? Should my trailer sit higher than seen in the attached picture? Is something wrong?

Because I know this question will be asked. My trailer is currently stripped down to below factory weight. There is no refer, empty bw and water tanks, no couch, no heater, no toilet, no propane tanks, and little or no personal effects other than a few hand tools. The cabinetry I added in weighs less than the original materials taken out. I know, I weighed it.

Your thoughts and comments are welcomed!

First pic is before, second is after.
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Old 06-28-2004, 10:30 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sneakinup
Question for the axle experts out there. Andy especially.

I have completed the change out of my trashed axles with new ones. I opted for the 3200 lb. capacity axles and added torsion arm angle. For a little background info, I have replaced the shocks, brakes, bearings, races, wheels, tires, and essentially have all new running gear. The installation was straight forward and amazingly simple, being that I did it without a set of second hands.

Now that I have set the trailer back down on level ground, the height of the wheel in regards to the wheel well, is not up where I anticipated it being, based on all of the other pictures I have seen of trailers with "good axles." While it is definitely way up from where it was, I am curious if the older trailers had a lower profile in general. From perusing thousands of photos of Airstreams, I have noticed that from 74' on, the trailers seemed to sit higher. Is this the case? Should my trailer sit higher than seen in the attached picture? Is something wrong?

Because I know this question will be asked. My trailer is currently stripped down to below factory weight. There is no refer, empty bw and water tanks, no couch, no heater, no toilet, no propane tanks, and little or no personal effects other than a few hand tools. The cabinetry I added in weighs less than the original materials taken out. I know, I weighed it.

First pic is before, second is after.
I have to ask a few questions.
You used 3200# axles. What is the dry weight of the trailer as it sits?
What is the angle of the torsion arms right now?
If you do not exceed the combined axle capacity + equipment Load, and the torsion bar angle is positive and is not hitting the frame I can only guess you are OK.

When I replaced my axle I went with a heaver axle and a 25deg angle instead of the stock 22deg. angle. It did provide more clearance but not as much as the trailer could use and I would want.
It rides really nice now. My wife commented that things are not scattered all over after a short run.
Lets us know how it turns out.
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Old 06-28-2004, 10:40 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by Janet's Husband
What is the dry weight of the trailer as it sits?
What is the angle of the torsion arms right now?
I am basing the weight of the trailer by the factory numbers, minus the standard equipment that it comes with as there being no chance of it currently being overloaded. 4510 is the listed weight for my trailer.

I have not checked the current angle, but will take a photo later today and post it.

I am confident that there is "nothing wrong" with the axles, just that I was anticipating a much higher stance, as per my initial conversation with Andy and having viewed pictures of other trailers of similar vintage post axle replacement.
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Old 06-28-2004, 10:43 AM   #33
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sneakinup.

If your Barry, then the following info applies. You did not state your name, which forces us to guess who you are.

From 1969 and up the axle specs are the same.

Originally, the starting angle was 25 degrees. We prefer to have them start at 35 degrees, so that you gain more ground clearance.

The original 72 27 foot axles had a rating of 2800 pounds. Going to 3200 pounds, is an 15 percent increase, which is OK. If you went to a 3500 pound axle, that would be an 25 percent increase, which would not be recommended, unless more weight was added to the basic trailer, over and above the way Airstream built it.

The key for you is to see what the torsion arm position is at now.

From your photo, I would say your Airstream is exactly where it should be.

Attached is a photo of a 1969 29 foot, that has had the same changeout made as you have. Please note that the amount of the tire that can now be seen above the wheel, is about the same.

Andy

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Old 06-28-2004, 10:49 AM   #34
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Thanks Andy. Yes, I am Barry.

Like I said, I was just curious. I am happy with the clearance I now have, but have seen so many variations... which is what spawned my questions.

I will check the angle and post my results. The big test will be how it rides.

Thanks again.
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Old 06-28-2004, 10:52 AM   #35
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Looks good to me.
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Old 06-28-2004, 03:43 PM   #36
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Then mine looks okay too

I could check with the PO, but I think I know how old my axles are. Here's a shot from a few minutes ago. Except for countertops & soft goods (let's say 100 pounds) and anything attached to the tongue, its "as delivered":
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Old 06-28-2004, 04:43 PM   #37
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At the risk of being insensitive I would not get under that trailer while its on cider blocks - lots of folks have gotten killed that way.

Anyway, what I did was go into a brand new trailer and jump around a bit in it to feel how new axles feel. Then jumped around in mine - BIG difference.

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Old 06-28-2004, 04:44 PM   #38
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ooooooooooooops those are not cider blocks - here I go again typing too fast, they are c i n d e r (think I got it ) blocks
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Old 06-28-2004, 05:45 PM   #39
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At the risk of being insensitive I would not get under that trailer while its on cider blocks - lots of folks have gotten killed that way.
Ken,

Thanks for your concern. However, they are concrete blocks with a weight distributing board on top.

While I have no desire to sway you to the dark side, "watch this" people have a tendancy to set their axles directly on top of a side, which cracks, and catastrophic failure results. But thanks for the post

Before this thread gets hijacked by Industrial Safety, what do you think about my axle situation?

Tom
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Old 06-28-2004, 06:06 PM   #40
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Cinder Blocks

Using cinder blocks to support the weight of an Airstream, is an E-ticket ride to a casket.

Unfortunately, the people you could ask, are no longer with us.

Safety, Safety, can it "ever" be preached too much???


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Old 06-28-2004, 06:12 PM   #41
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Jack stands are cheap compared to the cost of the axle.....
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Old 06-28-2004, 06:12 PM   #42
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My 63's axles have a downward slope on the torsion arms, and show some tire at the side, but still are bad. The rubber has hardened to a degree that there is little or no actual suspension. I can not get the torsion arms to deflect at all, jsut a hair,even when I lift up the front of the trailer so the front wheel go into the air.
I guess bad axles can rear their ugly heads in more ways than one.
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