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Old 08-30-2016, 02:11 PM   #1
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1965 24' Tradewind
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1961 19' Globetrotter
Mesa , Arizona
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61 GT, will 16" tires work

Picking up a trailer, 61 GT, in MO. and will be putting on new tires/wheels for a 1500 mile trip home. Would like to do tires prior to travel and get it right. Don't want to do a particular combo and then go oh if we had done that right away we could have saved money or time. (Will get brakes and bearings checked also).

Will be calling around to Discount Tire to see what they have on hand. Don't want to drive around unnecessarily in a strange city with a new trailer.

Will 16" tires work? Michelin's? Will likely NOT get trailer rated tires but truck.

We will like take this off road eventually. We will get new axel's eventually.

First off is safe road travel home.

Don't beat me up if I worded something wrong. I didn't vet the verbiage thru the DH.

Thanks in advance, here is a picture if it's current profile.
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Old 08-30-2016, 04:49 PM   #2
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So any opinions.
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Old 08-30-2016, 07:54 PM   #3
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I don't think so. I have trouble enough fitting my 15" standard width wheel, tire assembly into the wheelhouse of my 66 Trade Wind. The son's 69 Globetrotter is a real son of a gun with his next wider 15" tire. I have to get it just right to fit in up.

Both trailers are standard 22 degree starting angle axles. The "high lift" 32 degree axles would make it a bit easier I should think.

Now just watch all kinds of experienced Airstreamers reply with "no problem". I admit I've never tried it, although I could as I have 16" wheels and truck tires on my 86 Limited. They are a tight fit, but they clear the wheel well with no problem.

David
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Old 08-30-2016, 08:33 PM   #4
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Thank you David for your reply. Well see who else chimes in. 15 or 16 it doesn't matter much just wondering so we can start planning.
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Old 08-30-2016, 11:12 PM   #5
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15" yes

I recall reading that 1961 was a transitional year from leaf spring to Henschen. And that the Henschen was welded to the frame and not bolted. This may not be the case with every 1961.


You may have an opportunity to get some lift if you replace the axle. I've been off road, jumping curbs, etc, and have not dragged on anything yet. There's not much rear overhang on a GT. It's a great Airstream for the trails and highway.


My original wheels with bias ply 7:00 x 15 tires went on and off just fine. The first time I tried 15 LTX MS 2, They had to be deflated to fit over the hub and into the wheelhouse. The trailing arm angles are well within specs. Subsequently, I purposely deformed (just a little barely noticeable pull) the trailer body enough that the Michelin tires go on and off fully inflated.


Like David, I'd say there is no way that 16 Michelins would fit my 1968 GT without a frame lift kit or possibly a more aggressive down-start trailing arm angle..


16 Michelins may be way more tire than needed for a GT. The 15 Michelins trail beautifully and stick to the road remarkably well.


GLOBE TROTTERS RULE!!


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Old 08-30-2016, 11:23 PM   #6
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Thanks Aluminiumium for your reply. We are so excited for this new trailer. Backing this little gal in the woods on a forest road between some trees will be so nice. We had an inspection and it has torsion axles so one of the early transition ones. We will definitely get new axles, maybe even a lift but that will be down the road a bit.
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Old 08-30-2016, 11:26 PM   #7
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PS thx for the pictures. Yes GTs rock. I was secretly coveting a Bambi but why, now I'm not sure. I think the size 19 ft of this GT will fit us great. And we have a larger one also.
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Old 08-31-2016, 01:04 PM   #8
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16" tires

My 64 GT came with original axles. When I wanted to remove the wheels to grease the bearings, I could not get the wheels out of the well. The rubber in the axles had hardened and when jacked up the wheels did not drop. I repaced the axle and the new axle would probably take 16" wheels. The 15" wheels are very easy to remove. If you have the California built GT it is probably even more of a problem. Good luck.
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Old 08-31-2016, 01:11 PM   #9
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Lletteny

Very good information. This trailer is a 61 CA version and they are very likely the original axels. We won't be able to change the axels right then and there so we'll have to see.

Hopefully ours will drop enough. They do look tucked in there.

Maybe we'll be lucky to get the 15's on.
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Old 08-31-2016, 02:57 PM   #10
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16s won't work. Owned a 70 gt, had to be careful of tie width for them to fit. Kurt
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Old 08-31-2016, 04:51 PM   #11
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Ke6gkv, thx for passing on the good information.
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Old 08-31-2016, 05:07 PM   #12
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I had 225 75r 15 on my 66 GT. Had to deflate the spare to put on. 16" will not work. Went with 205 75R 15 D rated
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Old 08-31-2016, 07:25 PM   #13
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Well, there you have it. 16" diameter and likely width greater than 225 are just too difficult to get in the wheelwell.

So bring a good pair of 15" wheels and tires in the 205 to 225 width. Swipe them off your Trade Wind. Bring a good bottle jack and wood blocks to jack up the trailer one side at a time. Turn the brake drum and listen and feel for bad bearings. Swipe the battery out of your Trade Wind and attach it to the GT so your trailer brakes might work. Some folks on their "recovery mission" bring a set of auxiliary trailer lights to hang on the rear, and a roll of duct tape for loose windows and doors.

Tow it conservatively on less traveled roads. You will be fine, and I'm envious you have another project trailer.

David
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Old 08-31-2016, 08:13 PM   #14
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Florida Larry and David thanks for chiming in.

I think we have some consensus. Bought the new roll of duct tape and will heed the other advice.
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