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Old 10-10-2009, 07:13 AM   #1
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Bearing Buddy

Has anyone had any experience with using Bearing Buddies?

Jack
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Old 10-10-2009, 07:27 AM   #2
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I used them on a pop-up trailer years ago, on the advice of a friend. I have considered putting them on the Airstream but have not as of yet.

I am interested to hear what others have to say. jk
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Old 10-10-2009, 07:39 AM   #3
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I have Bearing buddys on my 12 flatbed which was originally a tandem jetski trailer.I have pulled that trailer since '96 I think and have not had a bearing problem. I think I asked this question before and was advised against them on the Airstream. The reason given was that you don't know how much grease you are putting in there and you can unknowingly blow the grease seals.
So I have never done it. But some of the new axles have a grease zerk and are meant to be greased,I cant see why one might not have the same problem of OVER greasing.
I will wait to see what kind of answers of wisdom are given by others.
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Old 10-10-2009, 08:35 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikethefixit View Post
I have Bearing buddys on my 12 flatbed which was originally a tandem jetski trailer.I have pulled that trailer since '96 I think and have not had a bearing problem. I think I asked this question before and was advised against them on the Airstream. The reason given was that you don't know how much grease you are putting in there and you can unknowingly blow the grease seals.
So I have never done it. But some of the new axles have a grease zerk and are meant to be greased,I cant see why one might not have the same problem of OVER greasing.
I will wait to see what kind of answers of wisdom are given by others.

I initially thought that bearing buddies or "never-lube" axles were a good idea, but counter arguements I have heard include:

- you miss the opportunity of catching bearings as they are starting to deteriorate which you otherwise well might with regular dismantling of teh bearing assemblies

- you likely will forget about regular inspection of the brakes, which normally goes hand in hand with a repack.

I decided to stick with the tried and proven methods, although I must admit i am a bit negligent about doing it every year - I do it at least every second year.
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Old 10-10-2009, 08:49 AM   #5
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Bearing Buddies are great for boat trailers that get dunked in the water every week, but not for travel trailers. In addition to the reason stated above, if you want to do an experiment on this one to prove it.
Grease is a good insulator, which means when you pack a hub completely with it, such as when using bearing buddies, it will retain heat more. This is not a problem when you have a boat trailer, and are towing it less than 20 miles to put in the water or behind your house. When you are towing a travel trailer 500 miles or more, there is nowhere for that heat to go, and can even cause brake fade in instances where you are using the brakes a lot.
Now, the experiment to prove this is:
Pack one hub completely with grease (full), and leave the other one (or three or five) with the normal amount. Hook up your trailer, and tow it, oh, 50 miles on the highway at highway speeds. Pull over, and touch the other hubs, then touch the hub that's full of grease. After noting the temperature difference, you'll probably go home and clean the grease out of the hub that's full.
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Old 10-10-2009, 08:52 AM   #6
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Jim Mickle, I like that - "bearing burners"

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f437...ddy-15486.html
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f437...tml#post186366
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f465...ies-33907.html
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Old 10-10-2009, 08:58 AM   #7
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I used them for a while and then quit. The problems I had with them were warm hubs and blown out grease seals. When the area between the outer and inner bearings becomes grease filled the bearings would run warm because the heat could not dissipate easily. This area must be grease filled for the grease to reach the inner bearings. Then, for the grease to penetrate the inner bearings it must flow through them blowing out the grease seal. That grease has to go somewhere. Then you stand a good chance of getting grease all over your brakes.
Now I just clean, inspect, and repack as needed.
Sam
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Old 10-10-2009, 09:46 AM   #8
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Has anyone had any experience with using Bearing Buddies?

Jack
I used them on my previous trailer for over 9 years without a problem. I simply followed the instructions that came with them. To me that was much better than taking them apart every year. I have found repacking the bearings to be the most dirty annoying job involved with travel trailers. When I first bought them in 2000, I researched them thoroughly, and found stories from people who had heard about something happening to someone else or stories about things that could happen. I have never heard a first hand story of a failure attributed to Bearing Buddies. A discussion with tech support at Bearing Buddy convinced me to buy them and I never regretted it. I had Bearing Buddy Bras on them.
Regards,
Ken
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Old 10-10-2009, 11:18 AM   #9
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Have them on our boat trailer, just finished a 2000mi Arkansas trip with no problems at all. Bearing temp ok, with NO grease spider webs on the alloy wheels.
Very easy to check bearing condition/free play, don't see what the problem is in that regard.
The only down side I see with using them on the AS is the center caps on the wheels prevent checking the level thru the BB sight glass.
I remove the AS wheels for Winter storage, so bearing inspection is done every Spring, BB not really needed.
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Old 10-10-2009, 01:14 PM   #10
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I have them on my tandem axle bass boat trailer. Don't use them ( just as dust caps). PO had blown out the rear seal and ruined the brakes with grease. You have no idea how much grease you need. The new axles with grease fittings are different. They don't fill the hub but rather the grease goes through a hole in the spindle to the rear bearing and then forces the grease out the front. I just received new axles for my TW and it has them. Axis brand axles and the feature is called Safe-T-Lube. I'll let you know how they do in a year or two.
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Old 10-10-2009, 02:01 PM   #11
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i have safety lube axles on my 10k 20 foot wells cargo and they run hot an throw grease around after they are full.

currently i do both the airstream and the wells the old fashioned way.

you would be suprized how many broken brake springs i have found over the years on both trailers.

john
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Old 10-10-2009, 02:43 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by overlander63 View Post
Bearing Buddies are great for boat trailers that get dunked in the water every week, but not for travel trailers.
That's where I use them. Pump them with grease every two or three trips, flushes out some of the old grease, and no worries about washing it out when making many launches, as we did when we tent camped.

Don't lose the plastice cap: if you do, you will surely "paint" your wheels black in short order!
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Old 10-10-2009, 03:36 PM   #13
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This is what my new Classic has. I hope they are a good idea.
Dexter Axle - Trailer Axles and Running Gear Components - Nev-R-Lube Bearings
Regards,
Ken
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Old 10-10-2009, 04:29 PM   #14
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