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Old 03-02-2007, 06:01 PM   #1
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Need help seeing a problem with the thing hanging off the axle

I am about to buy this trailer and got images emailed to me today. Can someone please tell me what they see here. Should the spring be visible in this shot? This a '65 Caravel.
This is the best shot I have.

Thanks

Barry
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Old 03-02-2007, 06:06 PM   #2
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Spring? No. The coach has torsion arm suspension. If you are referring to the rusty metal bar hanging down toward the ground, it is there to keep the bottom of the trailer from dragging if a tire blows, or a wheel is lost while driving.
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Old 03-02-2007, 06:53 PM   #3
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Yep, What he said.
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Old 03-02-2007, 07:00 PM   #4
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Wow, that bar hanging down had me sweating there a bit. This forum is great.

Thanks

Barry
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Old 03-02-2007, 07:15 PM   #5
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I know these were mentioned in great relief during the 'Mission II' episode of theVAP (Vintage Airstream Podcast). Rob Baker had a bearing fail and the entire wheel fall off -- only to be saved by this bit o' spring steel. Fun listening -- gratis like this site, though contributions to either site are appreciated...
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Old 03-18-2007, 10:18 AM   #6
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Replacing an Axle from 1,000 Miles Away

She is mine now but still located in Leesburg, FL. Now on to getting her up here to PA. I attached two more photos of the wheels. I am having a member here inspect her this week for road worthyness. Prices of $1,500-$1,800 are to haul her but towing should be much more reasonable. Does it look like the rubber in the axles is too bad? It could be that what I save having her towed vs hauled could be put toward a new axle. But I am 1,000 miles away and finding an honest dealer here is enough of a problem let alone working with one long distance like that.

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Barry
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Old 03-18-2007, 12:06 PM   #7
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It looks like it needs replacing soon, there is a dealer near where the trailer is now that I would trust.
Try getting hold of Walt's RV in Ocala, and let him know what you have, and what you would like done.
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Old 03-18-2007, 10:21 PM   #8
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Based on the pic of the left wheel the axle is shot. The pic is not clear enough to determine if the tires are shot.

If it were me........ I would determine the date code of the tires. If over 7 years old replace them before leaving FLA. (Between 5 and 7 it still may be a gamble, with 50/50 odds or worse.)

On the axles, I would not fool with them until I got it home. A 1000 mile trip shouldn't hurt the trailer. Just tow with the trailer totally empty as much as possible. Put any loose items in the TV. And make sure the insides are as secure as possible. (doors closed and latched, items out of the cabinets) tow it home and deal with it there.

Some will dissagree with this, and it's not with out risk. However all of life has some element of risk. The above is a risk I would be willing to take. And as a matter of fact did take that risk towing my O from Indiana to Arizona.

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Old 03-18-2007, 10:40 PM   #9
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I would check prices of towing the trailer 1000 miles. I think the numbers are going to be close to what you quoated for hauling it. Anyone who tows will want to know the condition of the wheels, tires and brakes. Since these are most likely unknown to you, you may do better to have it hauled.
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Old 03-19-2007, 04:11 AM   #10
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Also FWIW that left side wheel looks like it is binding against the body. Also that is a non standard Airstream wheel....I second Terry's suggestion to have Walt's take a look at it.

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Old 03-19-2007, 09:12 AM   #11
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Actually both wheels are not OE. They may be less than the required load rating. That is a single axle so those wheels and tires may carry more weight each than a dual axle set up.

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Old 03-19-2007, 09:46 AM   #12
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FWIW, I bought mine and had new tires, rims, bearings, etc. before meeting it halfway from Okla. to Ariz. I'd known the PO since I was a teenager, so I wanted him to tow it to Albuquerque. That said, those tires look like they're from a second hand rack outside a salvage yard. I'm with Richard on this. I'd have it put on a flatbed. You're buying the shell at this point and it should be delivered as safely as possible.
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Old 03-19-2007, 02:49 PM   #13
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I agree that the tires were just thrown on there. I am counting on repacked or replaced bearings and new tires and rims but I need to determine if the axle is suitable for the trip. I have asked a fellow forum member to inspect the trailer so we'll see what he finds.

Barry
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