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Old 04-28-2010, 12:35 PM   #1
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1973 23' Safari
Smithfield , Virginia
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 17
New Axles This Weekend for my '73 Safari, The After Action Report

The axle swap went well. We had one or two bone head moves, but still managed to complete both axles in less than five hours. We had to stop work due to rain a few times and had a coffee break or two plus some time standing around discussing the next step. All things considered I don’t think we did too badly.
The following are few things I’d like to pass along from my experience. I had plenty of advice from the forum members and all of it was helpful.
1. I had two helpers and three floor jacks. This made handling the axle assemblies fairly easy. Two jacks at each end and a small one for fine adjustments when lining the axle with the frame notch or connecting the shocks.
2. We also used an electric impact wrench. The job could be done with hand tools by with the impact wrench we had the first old axle laying on the driveway in less than 20 minutes. With the exception of the very last bolt, which we had to finesse some, all the hardware came apart with no problem. I did spray all the hardware with PB Blaster the night before.
3. As advised, we installed the shocks on the axles before lifting them in place. It was apparent when we had the axles in place why this was a good idea.
4. I made up, out of 2X6s, a couple of ramps to raise the trailer off the ground. I added one extra layer to ensure we got it high enough and was glad I did. The front tires, after being installed on the new axle, just barely cleared the ground. We did the front axle first, but I would recommend that the rear axle be done first. When you have the AS coupled to the TV and the front wheels up on the ramps the rear wheels on the new axle was four plus inches in the air. If I had changed the rear axle first I would have had extra clearance for the front wheels.
5. Finely. If anyone is considering replacing their axles I’d say do it. It is a straight forward process. I ordered new GKN/Henschen axles from Andy at Inland. Some might think that wasn’t most cost effective way to go, but I had no holes to drill and everything fit like a glove.

See ya around the Forum and Thanks for all the help.
Jim Smith
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Old 04-29-2010, 11:14 AM   #2
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2012 30' International
Walkerton , Virginia
Join Date: Dec 2003
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Congratulations on a great project conceived, designed and completed.

Pat
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