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Old 02-28-2008, 06:47 PM   #1
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Dexter order on 1965 Caravel

I just ordered a Dexter axle for my 65 Caravel and during the measuring process, I got two different readings: one with the wheels on and trailer on the ground, and one with the wheels off and the trailer jacked up and on stands (under the old axle). There was about a 1/4" difference which I contribute to the axle tube camber ( the axle spreads out slightly when under the weight of the trailer). I talked to a tech at Dexter and he said use the "jacked" measurement (1/4" shorter) because when they are fabricating them on a bench, the are not under load...obviously.
If I have done something wrong in my measuring, or I'm just stupid, please let me know soon, I can call Dexter and change the order.

Thanks, Dan
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Old 02-28-2008, 07:23 PM   #2
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Will Dexter weld a shock bracket for you? I shopping for an axle manufacturer right now.
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Old 02-28-2008, 07:31 PM   #3
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I recommend that you use the search tool on the upper blue bar and search axle replacement. You will find many threads about this very topic with varying opinions about what brand of shock would best suit your replacement scenario.

You will find that axles are the subject of some heated debate. Have fun reading
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Old 02-28-2008, 07:32 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C Ray
Will Dexter weld a shock bracket for you? I shopping for an axle manufacturer right now.
Yes

See post here: http://www.airforums.com/forums/432351-post43.html
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Old 02-28-2008, 07:33 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheridan
I just ordered a Dexter axle for my 65 Caravel and during the measuring process, I got two different readings: one with the wheels on and trailer on the ground, and one with the wheels off and the trailer jacked up and on stands (under the old axle). There was about a 1/4" difference which I contribute to the axle tube camber ( the axle spreads out slightly when under the weight of the trailer). I talked to a tech at Dexter and he said use the "jacked" measurement (1/4" shorter) because when they are fabricating them on a bench, the are not under load...obviously.
If I have done something wrong in my measuring, or I'm just stupid, please let me know soon, I can call Dexter and change the order.

Thanks, Dan
My measurements were "under load" and came in just fine.
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Old 02-28-2008, 07:43 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C Ray
Will Dexter weld a shock bracket for you? I shopping for an axle manufacturer right now.
I asked that question when I called the Dexter tech. First he said I didn't need one, then he basically said "no", we don't do shock mounts any more, the trailing arm or "the bone" (because it's shaped like a dog biscut) is cast not forged like they used to be and dosn't accept a weld as well. However, the welder at GSM Vehicles said he does it all the time with no problem.
I plan to cut the old ones off and have them welded to the new axle and use new shocks....not to improve the ride as much as extend the life of the axle.

Dan
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Old 02-28-2008, 07:49 PM   #7
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build spec's

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheridan
I just ordered a Dexter axle for my 65 Caravel ... I can call Dexter and change the order.

Thanks, Dan
The absolute best thing you can do right now is to request a copy of the build spec's from Dexter before it's built. From my experience the axle will match those exactly. If you don't know what some of the notations on the Pick Sheet mean, post them here and there is a GOOD chance some of us can help decode it to assure your order has been processed properly.

Take it from a fellow Forums member, you don't want to deal with an axle that doesn't meet your intent...

P.S. They did shock brackets as of 3 weeks ago...
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Old 02-28-2008, 08:43 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiHoAgRV
P.S. They [Dexter] did shock brackets as of 3 weeks ago...
Hi C Ray:

Please be aware that Airstream changed from vertical to horizontal shocks on its Henschen axles around 1967 -- I don't recall the exact year. Do a "Search" for axle shock or other similar word combinations to find my earlier detailed post on that precise topic. Or search under my name for my earlier posts.

NOTE WELL: The shock brackets that Dexter welds on are for horizontal shocks only and do not [necessarily] work with vertical shocks that came on your 1962 Bambi. Be informed before you submit your order!
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Old 02-28-2008, 09:51 PM   #9
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I'm having a new Dexter installed on my '64 trade wind. it should be delivered next week. my installer - South Jersey RV has done many of these Dexter installs and Ron of SJRV swears the shock is not neccessary.
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Old 02-29-2008, 04:26 PM   #10
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Thanks for the heads up WeeWind
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Old 02-29-2008, 04:34 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 47WeeWind
Hi C Ray:

Please be aware that Airstream changed from vertical to horizontal shocks on its Henschen axles around 1967 -- I don't recall the exact year. Do a "Search" for axle shock or other similar word combinations to find my earlier detailed post on that precise topic. Or search under my name for my earlier posts.

NOTE WELL: The shock brackets that Dexter welds on are for horizontal shocks only and do not [necessarily] work with vertical shocks that came on your 1962 Bambi. Be informed before you submit your order!
But I will point the way to Fred's excellent info. He's referring to this thread - http://www.airforums.com/forums/f460...tml#post348754
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Old 03-01-2008, 12:45 PM   #12
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C Ray, This is a picture of the shock mount on my 65 Caravel. I plan to cut it off and weld it to my new Dexter axle when it arrives in about ten days. I'll let you know how it turns out. Thanks to 47 WeeWind for clarifying the transition from vertical to horizontal shocks in the 60's.

Dan
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Old 03-01-2008, 02:21 PM   #13
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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)
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Old 03-01-2008, 03:01 PM   #14
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C Ray,

Would you please double check the 25 deg. down angle on your order? I don't think Dexter offers any choices other than 0, 10, 22.5, and 45 degrees.
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