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Old 03-01-2008, 03:10 PM   #15
DFK
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For those of you that checked the "vertical vs horizontal" thread refenced in a previous post, I know of at least one 1967 Caravel (mine), made in California, that has the vertical shock arrangment. I'm guessing 1967 was a "transition year" for shock mountings. If your 1967 Airstream has vertical shocks you can be thankful like I am because replacement shocks are considerably cheaper and easier to get than replacement horizontal shocks.
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Old 03-01-2008, 03:35 PM   #16
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Switcharoo

Humm... but the option was on the order form, of course the order form was form was designed by a distributor (other than the one I was using, curiously) So, maybe the distributor that my distributor "borrowed" the form from, needs that option for another vendor. Anyway, I will call the distrubitor Mon. first thing, I know the order has not gone out yet. Guess I will use the 22.5 if indeed Dexter doesn't offer 25 deg.

Thanks allot for your input!!
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Old 03-01-2008, 03:52 PM   #17
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C Ray,

Are you sure you are getting a Dexter axle? I assumed from your previous posts you were going with Dexter, but the Magic Tilt people look like they use a variety of axle manufacturers.

Including one that makes an infinitely adjustable down angle axle. I would specify the manufacturer you want, and not leave it up to a distributor.
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Old 03-01-2008, 03:55 PM   #18
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C Ray,
This is what I ordered for the Caravel:

#10 torsion axle 3500lb. cambered (slightly curved)
The original Henchen was stamped at 3000lb.
74.5" Hub face to Hub face.
57.75" Outside bracket to Outside bracket.
Reverse orientation, side mount, low profile, brackets.
22.5 degrees down, trailing arm.
Electric brakes
Grease bearings (not EZ-lube or oil)
5 lugs on 4.5" centers.
AND A written copy of the specifications from the distributor that ordered the axle for me, just in case there are any surprises. BTW, I happen to live 15 miles from the distributor and have agreed to pick the axle up when it arrives. No shipping cost. Yeah!
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Old 03-01-2008, 04:33 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheridan
C Ray,
This is what I ordered for the Caravel:

#10 torsion axle 3500lb. cambered (slightly curved)
The original Henchen was stamped at 3000lb.
74.5" Hub face to Hub face.
57.75" Outside bracket to Outside bracket.
Reverse orientation, side mount, low profile, brackets.
22.5 degrees down, trailing arm.
Electric brakes
Grease bearings (not EZ-lube or oil)
5 lugs on 4.5" centers.
AND A written copy of the specifications from the distributor that ordered the axle for me, just in case there are any surprises. BTW, I happen to live 15 miles from the distributor and have agreed to pick the axle up when it arrives. No shipping cost. Yeah!
According to Henschen, a Caravel axle should not exceed 3200 pounds.

Also, be prepared to add shims to the brackets, so that it fits correctly.

If not, you will damage the frame, and/or bend the mounting brackets.

The advantage of using the original brand as a replacement, is that you can have a starting angle of 35 degrees, have 12 inch brakes if you wish, and not have to worry about any fitting problems, or under/over rated axles.

While costs are important, it is not everything to many owners, especially when they must assume "all" the risks of errors, since they are providing the specs, as opposed to just providing the trailer serial number, that assures them of a perfect fit.

Andy
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Old 03-01-2008, 04:42 PM   #20
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Yes, the sales reciept indicates Dexter axle, and my specification sheet which list all above items also indicateds Dexter. The spec sheet is mentioned on the order form, note 1. If it isn't Dexter, they will have a hard time avoiding full reimbursment. My distributor is charging me freight from Dexter to him, about $100
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Old 03-01-2008, 05:04 PM   #21
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Andy, taking two simple measurements is well worth 400 bucks. My Bambi did pretty good for 46 years on the old, outdated, under-rated axle and the installation will allow me to indulge in perfectionism, so I think it will be OK.
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Old 03-01-2008, 09:03 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C Ray
Hey thanks, I will have to weld mine on to the torsion arm but I'm not sure if the original ones will be long enough because I am upgrading the original 2500# to 2800# and from 22.5 deg. to 25 deg. all this may add up to getting a new set of longer brackets. At least I will be able to measure the old one and repeat the same angle. So, Here's what I ordered.
#10 torsion axle, down-rated to 2800#
Straight beam (with standard toe and camber bends)
74" Hub-face to Hub-face
58" Outside Frame width
Reverse orientation
Side mount hangars
25 deg. down
Electric brakes
10" hubs (5 lugs on 4 and 1/2 centers)
Also... Drop the side mount hangers - they are extra and unneeded.
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Old 03-01-2008, 11:13 PM   #23
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Andy,
I measured my axle's width between the brackets twice. Once with the load of the trailer and once with the trailer jacked up and unweighted. The load measurement was 58" the unloaded measurement was 57.75". I called Dexter and the tech told me to use the unloaded measurement because that's how they manufacture them. I took his word for it and if he turns to be wrong the axle will still fit with two 1/8" shims. Better slightly narrower than wider and unusable.
As for the axle weight rating, the Henschen axle on it now was stamped at 3000 lbs. I was thinking the interior is going to weight more when I'm done redoing it plus two batties and two 30 lb. propane tanks and spare tire on the tongue, the air conditioner and a little extra for storage convinced me to add 500 more pounds to the stock axle. Please tell me why this is not a good idea. I am open to informed suggestions by those of much greater knowledge than I.

Dan
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Old 03-02-2008, 08:09 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheridan
Andy,
I measured my axle's width between the brackets twice. Once with the load of the trailer and once with the trailer jacked up and unweighted. The load measurement was 58" the unloaded measurement was 57.75". I called Dexter and the tech told me to use the unloaded measurement because that's how they manufacture them. I took his word for it and if he turns to be wrong the axle will still fit with two 1/8" shims. Better slightly narrower than wider and unusable.
As for the axle weight rating, the Henschen axle on it now was stamped at 3000 lbs. I was thinking the interior is going to weight more when I'm done redoing it plus two batties and two 30 lb. propane tanks and spare tire on the tongue, the air conditioner and a little extra for storage convinced me to add 500 more pounds to the stock axle. Please tell me why this is not a good idea. I am open to informed suggestions by those of much greater knowledge than I.

Dan
The mounting bracket dimension is 57 7/8 inches, not 57 3/4 inches.

According to Airstream and Henschen, the 1965 Caravel frame "could be damaged" if the axle rating exceeded 3000 pounds.

We had tests done with a 3200 pound axle, that clearly showed "do not exceed."

Of course, if you wish, you can beef up the chassis.

Andy
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Old 03-02-2008, 09:02 AM   #25
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Thanks Andy,

I can live with 1/16 short on each side of the mounting brackets.
I will call Dexter and see if I can change the weight rating, if not, I'll reinforce the frame which may not be a bad idea since I am planing to do a lot of bouncing around in the boondocks.

Thank you for the advice, sincerely,

Dan
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Old 03-03-2008, 09:40 AM   #26
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Update

I called my Dexter distributor this morning and changed the weight rating on the axle I ordered to 3000 lbs. (which was what was stamped on the original Henschen axle for my 65 Caravel). Thanks to Andy from Inland RV for explaining the domino theory of stiffer axle = more frame stress = more headaches. The irony is that Andy helped me order a competitors axle. He also took the opportunity to point out his alternative to people who don't want the trouble and responsibility of ordering an axle.

Quote:
The advantage of using the original brand as a replacement, is that you can have a starting angle of 35 degrees, have 12 inch brakes if you wish, and not have to worry about any fitting problems, or under/over rated axles.

While costs are important, it is not everything to many owners, especially when they must assume "all" the risks of errors, since they are providing the specs, as opposed to just providing the trailer serial number, that assures them of a perfect fit.

Andy
So for you 65 Caravel owners, here are my final axle order specs:

Dexter "Torflex Axle"
#10 torsion axle 3000lb. cambered (slightly curved)
74.5" Hub face to Hub face.
57.7/8" Outside bracket to Outside bracket.
Reverse orientation, side mount, low profile, brackets.
22.5 degrees down, trailing arm.
Electric brakes
Grease bearings (not EZ-lube or oil)
5 lugs on 4.5" centers.

I am planning on cutting the vertical shock mounts off of the old trailing arms and welding them to the new axle and buying new shocks.
I'll post again if anything "interesting" comes up during the installation process.

Dan
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Old 03-06-2008, 11:49 AM   #27
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Andy,
The weight rating on my axle is 3000 lbs. and you told me
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In
According to Airstream and Henschen, the 1965 Caravel frame "could be damaged" if the axle rating exceeded 3000 pounds.

We had tests done with a 3200 pound axle, that clearly showed "do not exceed."

Of course, if you wish, you can beef up the chassis.

Andy
So why are you telling Barkingdogg
Quote:
3200 pounds is a good upgrade.
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Old 03-06-2008, 12:01 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheridan
Andy,
The weight rating on my axle is 3000 lbs. and you told me

So why are you telling Barkingdogg
You can install a 3200 pound axle on a Caravel, safely.

You can also install a 3500 pound axle, IF the trailer will ALWAYS carry a heavy payload.

A long time ago, we said "do not exceed" 3000 pounds.

In field tests determine that an increase is OK.

Andy
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