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Old 07-04-2009, 02:36 PM   #15
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Frank,
Thanks for looking in. If I pull the left side of the axle back it would straighten out the left side tire, but then wouldent it throw out the right side tire?
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Old 07-04-2009, 02:40 PM   #16
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[quote=Melody Ranch;717523]I'm wondering if you all are not reading more into an alignment problem. If you look at a good (new) axle you will see an apparent bend in it. Thats the way its built and supposed to be that way. I hope your not changing an axle just because you see a slight curvature.

Nope not looking at the curve... Looking at the tire tread pattern. it is eating one tire Really fast. See the picture. that tire looked new aprox 700 miles ago. Mike
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Old 07-04-2009, 02:51 PM   #17
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the hub centers should be the same distance from the the jack stand. it is possible the bolts shifted the axle crooked. is it just the one tire? if so, your hub might be be bent or the spindle. I am willing to bet that the problem is the axle is not perpendicular to the frame and you are dragging one wheel slightly.
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Old 07-04-2009, 04:00 PM   #18
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Sorry for the delay I had to clean up a fingernail polish spill in the bedroom (if we were camping the girls would have been outside painting their nails)

Ok so when I get the trailer back here ( it lives 2.5 miles away) I will get it in the air then get the tires off and measure from the TOUNGUE jack to the centers of the hubs. I was confused about what jack then it came to me (from another thread read a while ago). I will start there and see how close the axles are.

And yes it is just the one tire.

PS mineral spirits will not make a carpet shampooer blow up like my wife suggests!
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Old 07-04-2009, 05:23 PM   #19
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I replaced 2 axles on my Argosy and noticed one tire wearing. I measured jack to front tires, they were the same. I measured front tire to back tire with a caliper and one side was further apart. I reamed out the mounting holes and moved the one tire ( the one that was wearing) forward about 1/4". All is well now, no tire wearing.
The axle has enough give to move one side that small amount without changing the other side.
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Old 07-04-2009, 07:03 PM   #20
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Looks like you have 2 issues.

1st issue; Out of balance tire/rim. This is what is causing the uneven wear. Lots of weight to fix it, means the tire needs to be rotated on the rim because the heavy spot of the tire and wheel are in the same location. OR you have a bent rim or tire tread mis-aligned to the carcas.

Second issue; outside tire wear caused by one or two alignment angles that are incorrect. Toe in and/or camber. This would be an adjustment for one side only.

Frankly I would fix the out of balance issue first and replace the tire. Then continue to monitor all tires for abnormal wear.

The order of likely issues, from most common to least;
Out of balance tire/rims
Bent rim
Toe in incorrect because of road hazard
Axle manufactured with incorrect toe in
Axle manufactured with incorrect camber

Work from most likley to least likely until you take the tariler to a shop.

Prices for shop work will vary on location in the country. Phoenix metro will likley be $50 to check and $100 to $500 to make adjustments (bend the axle with correct equipment) as needed. It will be time and material if the shop is doing just loosening up the assembly and making a slight movement. An adjustment would be the absolute last step.

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Old 07-13-2009, 07:57 AM   #21
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I was able to get it in the air last night after returning home from a weekend out. I removed the front tires and with a tape measure believe the front axle is in line ( measurements from the tongue jack to center of bearing cap) are the same, or as at least as close as you can get with a tape measure. With a quick adjust of the brakes (might as well I was all ready there) grab the tape and check from the center of the geese cap to the center of the hub or "hub cap for wheel) it looks like the rear left side is back almost 1/4 of an inch (not a good measure point using the hub cap but just getting close). With that info I go under and measure better points and find that the rear axle is not parallel to the front axle!

So I think it is a mounting issue. I will get the rear off the ground then loosen the left side and pull it forward and see how close I can get it. I don't think there will be enough clearance in the holes but I can grind them out. If it looks like I need to pull the other side back I could do that too.

I need to "gain" 3/16 of an inch total.

If any one has a better plan let me know. Thanks Mike
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Old 07-13-2009, 12:38 PM   #22
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I was able to get it in the air last night after returning home from a weekend out. I removed the front tires and with a tape measure believe the front axle is in line ( measurements from the tongue jack to center of bearing cap) are the same, or as at least as close as you can get with a tape measure. With a quick adjust of the brakes (might as well I was all ready there) grab the tape and check from the center of the geese cap to the center of the hub or "hub cap for wheel) it looks like the rear left side is back almost 1/4 of an inch (not a good measure point using the hub cap but just getting close). With that info I go under and measure better points and find that the rear axle is not parallel to the front axle!

So I think it is a mounting issue. I will get the rear off the ground then loosen the left side and pull it forward and see how close I can get it. I don't think there will be enough clearance in the holes but I can grind them out. If it looks like I need to pull the other side back I could do that too.

I need to "gain" 3/16 of an inch total.

If any one has a better plan let me know. Thanks Mike
Mike.

The correct measuring points are from the backside center of the tounge jack, to the lowest forward edge of the axle mounting plate.

That tells you what's going on, or not.

If indeed you do measure a difference, it will be exactly 1/16, 1/8, or 3/16 of an inch.

Somehow, someway, in the early 70's, one axle mounting plate was welded, a little off, from where it should have been, by the above dimensions.

On a 31 foot trailer, each 1/16 of an inch off will make the trailer to "dog leg" about 3 inches from front to back.

No one ever found out why that error occured, and the real mystery is how it got corrected, without supposedly anybody doing anything.

The square notch must be opened up and the bolt holes must be oval shaped, to correct the issue.

Andy
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Old 07-13-2009, 01:21 PM   #23
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Good call on the measuring the mounting plates! It was a pain in the butt finding the center of the cap! I am waiting on the baby sitter to get here so I can get to it.
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Old 07-13-2009, 03:49 PM   #24
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Mike
I hope you can correct that situation. Don't sound to bad,and sounds like Andy has solved the mystery of the miss measured holes. GET ON IT. Detroit-Metro is coming ya know and I wanna see ya there.
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Old 07-13-2009, 04:26 PM   #25
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I am on it !!! it will be straight enuf for travel by then!! Hell or "hot wrench" it will be on the road!!
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Old 07-14-2009, 12:08 PM   #26
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TAH DAH!! It is done!!! I hope right this time!! The front was out 3/16 on one side and I could not make it up there so... push one side forward and pull one side back till the measurements "met" in the middle and the front is GOOD!!! I put it back together then got the back it the air. Then from the tongue jack again I measured to the center of the axle shaft (I would have thought there would have been a center bore point in the spindle but NO) and the left was out only 1/8 of an inch off and I could make that up in the holes on the left side only. I had to use a ratchet strap to hold it forward until I was able to get the bolts tight. Now the ends of the axles ARE the same distance apart. the mounting plates are the same distance apart. And when I measure diagonally across them they are the same too. SO THIS TIME I THINK I HAVE GOT IT!!!!! But we will see?
Thanks everyone for the help and the encouragement it was all very helpful.
Next up looking locally to have the drums balanced? More or less expensive than external balancing things?
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Old 07-14-2009, 01:45 PM   #27
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Axle alignment

One nice thing about Airstreaming, is that you always learn something, more often than you would think.

I have many answers to many questions, as I should after 43 years with Airstream, but I never had a "positive answer" about this question, until today.

In the early 70's the axle mounting plates on the curbside, were moved forward 1/16, 1/8 or 3/16 of an inch, from the road side mounting.

I just love the answer.

A not to be named engineer at Airstream, so dictated that change, because he felt that the trailers would track better because of the typical crowning of the roads.

Hello!!!!!!!!~

So a word of caution to the owners of the early 70's Airstream trailers.

Please check the distance from the lower forward part of the axle mounting plate, to the backside center of the tongue jack. That dimension should be exactly the same to both sides.

If you measure a difference, it will be 1/16, 1/8 or 3/16 difference. That difference causes two problems.

1. Your tandem axle trailer will have unusual tire wear typically on the curb side.

2. Your trailer will tow "dog leg." As an example a 31 footer, with 3/16 inch difference will tow dog leg 9 inches, from front to back.

The fix?

Once you have established that there is a difference in measurements from one side to the other, you can move the axles on one side either forward or rearward, by opening up the square notch and making the 5/8 inch mounting bolt holes oval.

It is suggested that a rearward movement would be better than a forward movement.

I know this is disappointing to many owners, but at least we now have, after all these years, a positive answer as to why the tires on some models have goofy wear.

For those owners that are replacing axles on the early 70's trailers, we suggest you check the axle mounting plate location, prior to installing new axles, just to make sure, one way or another.

Andy
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Old 07-14-2009, 03:25 PM   #28
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Here are some tire pictures of the flat one. There was a rock in it that punctured it but look at the tread ware pattern.

The bulb does not touch the front of EITHER tire, I know this is not a proper tool but it should give us a generall idea.

The Tire in the top right clearly shows an internal tread seperation. Regardless of alignment wear, it is impossible for an alignment problem to cause a single bald spot in the center of a tire. Alignment wear is a consistant wear pattern or feathering. The only way a tire can be bald in only one spot is by a brake locked up to the best of my knowledge.
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