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Old 03-12-2002, 10:35 AM   #1
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How To Balance Running Gear

Want to see how you can properly balance the trailer hub and drum, tire and wheel assembly? To find out, visit our web site, inlandrv.com Click on photos and then "wheel balancing." Andy
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Old 04-10-2002, 11:21 PM   #2
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Question Different balancing types?

I looked at the articles on your Website (www.inlandrv.com) and noticed the type of balancing you are talking about is not the typical wheel balancing and that's it...

Can a typical tire store perform the type of balancing you are talking about? What if they balance the wheels on a computer controlled balancing machine?

I have a 1961 Bambi with a new Henschen Dura Tourqe axle. Do I also need to balance more than just the tires?

Thanks,

The other "web" Andy
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Old 04-11-2002, 09:50 AM   #3
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Andy (the other one). 16 foot or 34 foot, doesn't matter. The law of "Physics" says, if it turns or rotates, it must be in balance. If not, damage of some sort or other "WILL" occur. When, depends on the road conditions, (smooth, choppy), speed, and tire temperature. The myth of not needing a complete balance has been perpetuated all too long. NO ONE, I have "ever" heard of, would dare drive their tow vehicle with unbalanced running gear. So why is the Airstream trailer different? It's really not. There are stories, wives tales, myths, prognostications, and "who cares." But the hard cold fact remains that NO Airstream trailer ever built is immune from damage caused by unbalanced running gear. I have repaired and/or rebuilt Airstream trailers for over 36 years that have been subjected to unnecessary vibration caused by "improper" running gear balance. Todays cost to rebuild or repair the resulting damage runs from just a few dollars, because the cause was discovered and corrected early, to several thousand dollars, due to major structural damage, such as frame and shell failures. AND, the real bad news, it that an insurance company will NOT pay for any long term damage, such as that caused by vibration. If Airstream owners insist that proper wheel balancing is not necessary, it's OK with us. But it sure has kept our shop in Corona busy, for over 16 years. Decisions, decisions. Andy
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Old 04-11-2002, 01:48 PM   #4
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Andy, is the reason for this type of balance because the drum isn't balanced because of the electric brakes? If so, why can't they balance the drums & running gear, so you could just balance the wheel & tire. Do all TT's including other brands have this same requirment? That procedure looks like it would cost a fortune.
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Old 04-12-2002, 09:58 AM   #5
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Jim. Why the manufacturers of the drum don't balance them, is a good question. I don't have an answer. The fact still remains that if balancing is not done properly, the trailer will suffer. How much depends on the amount of unbalance and the type of suspension system, guaranteed.
A customer came in yesterday and offered as a suggestion, a different meaning for WBCCI.

W= WHY
B= BELIEVE
C= COMPLAIN
&
C= CRY
I= INCESSANTLY

Hmmmm. Fruit for thought. The equipment that we have for suspension systems is secondary. What we MUST do to operate it properly, is primary. Not liking the facts is OK, but the cold fact is, if you don't balance correctly, damage WILL occur. PERIOD.
Some things in life are difficult or impossible to accept. It looks like balancing the running gear, properly, on travel trailers holds a close second to TAXES.
Andy
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Old 04-12-2002, 10:28 AM   #6
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Andy,

What is the typical cost per tire to do the wheel+drum balancing as you have described on your web site??
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Old 04-12-2002, 10:40 AM   #7
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Andy,
I know you have convinced me regarding the critically in balancing. But looking at your page, I'm wondering who, other than you, does this kind of balancing? Has anyone taken your directions to dealers who do balancing? It's one thing to know the proper method....it's another to find someone who will do this procedure. If I knew I could find someone, I'd do it in a second.

Jack
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Old 04-12-2002, 11:18 AM   #8
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Jack. Way back then, 1969 to 1973, will I was with Caravanner Insurance, if I remember correctly, I had Bill Thomas buy that type balancer. However, many truck tire centers can also balance the tire, wheel, hub and drums as an assembly. Andy
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Old 04-12-2002, 11:43 AM   #9
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Great! Glad to hear that. I'll ask the question and get this done up at his place. Thanks for the information.

Regards,

Jack
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Old 04-12-2002, 12:50 PM   #10
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Andy-- I called two local truck tire center and both said that their equipment was too large to be used on a travel trailer.
I then called four local RV dealers and all do not balance tires on the trailer.
You referred someone to Bill Thomas. Is he in St. Louis??
Tks,John
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Old 04-12-2002, 01:00 PM   #11
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This is per my local AS dealer service dept., " we do not do any balancing here, we just send the tires to a local tire shop for balancing. I never heard of them being balanced on the trailer".

Andy I think you have a great way of balancing the assembly but it doesn't look like many others do.

John
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Old 04-12-2002, 02:45 PM   #12
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John,
Bill Thomas Camper Sales is the local Airstream dealer for the St. Louis area. His web page is
www.btcamper.com

Jack
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Old 04-12-2002, 03:43 PM   #13
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I spoke with AS tech support about this and he said that AS, on production units, has the tire and wheel balanced prior to installation. He also stated that the axle manuf. provides a balanced assembly, therefore balancing on the trailer is not needed.

That made me think about why would Andy strongly recommend this and I guess it's his experience with units that have some miles on them compared to the factory which is sending out new balanced units. Since things wear out and get out of balance, I guess it's cheaper to pay now then later!!!
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Old 04-12-2002, 06:42 PM   #14
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Brett. We charge .3 hours per steel wheel assembly and .4 hours per mag wheel assembly, plus the lead. Andy
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