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Old 01-20-2011, 04:45 PM   #645
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In View Post
Torsion axles can be realigned.

The tow in is 1/16 inch, plus or minus 1/16 inch.

The camber is 3/4 degrees positive, plus or minus 3/4 degree. The top of the tire should be further out from the frame than the bottom of the tire.

The specs should match for each wheel, namely all being the same.

Lack of proper running gear balancing, can also cause some weird tire wear.

Andy

Excellent info, thanks Andy I will try to check measurements.

Presume that all you can do is try to use a straight edge and ruler to make measurements in from the edge of the wheel wells.

I bought the trailer used, and don't really know how long it has taken for this wear pattern to develop.

I did however buy and install a set of centramatics from you last year. I think the wear pattern was already in evidence when I installed them.

I'll be checking alignment and if I think there may be a problem, will call our nearby AS dealer to see if they could verify and possibly fix - hopefully without new axles, although I do have a still unresolved issue as to what size axles are in my trailer. It is a 2005 and I believe they changed the axle rating mid-production.

If it does turn out thatI have the lighter axles (as my manual indicates) I wouldn't mind having the 5000# ones installed. having a bent axle might give me the incentive I would need!


Brian.
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Old 01-20-2011, 04:51 PM   #646
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Brian,

You can call Discount now and ask them to have the tires waiting for you when you get there. I recall some posts about similar problems with Maxxis, but not anywhere as many as with Goodyear. This may reflect the fact that there are a lot more Marathons than Maxxis tires on Airstreams. The alternative is a LT tire with 16" wheels. Those of us that have gone that route usually pick Michelin LTX or Rib tires—there are lots of threads about that. This is the most expensive way to do it, but we are very happy with the change.

Gene
Thanks Gene,

May well go the route of 16"LT at some point, A bit reluctant for the moment as I have just installed two brand new Alcoa 15" rims!

Also, and despite all the good reports on the LT's I must admit that I still find myself thinking that they must make ST tires for a reason! I guess that's a whole other debate!

I did consider ordering the tires from Discount ahead of time - but
incorrigible pessimist that I am, I worried about what to do if for some reason, health issues or other, that we never make it to Tucson this year, even though I have made reservations!

The Discount website says they should be available at a Tucson store within 24 hours, and so since we will be there two weeks, maybe a bit more, I figured I'd go to Discount and order them the day we arrive in Tucson.

Brian
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Old 01-21-2011, 12:50 AM   #647
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Wingeezer, a slipped belt looks like a lump in the tread or like a small section of tread squirmed a little and got stuck out of alignment with the rest of the tire. The radial belt should be securely bonded to the body plies. However, when it starts to separate from the carcass, the tread starts to creep and gets lumpy or squiggly. As the belt continues to separate, the tread slips and peels off the tire and ends up with the other alligators alongside the highway.

We hoped that the Maxxis tires were a permanent fix, but it appears that they too are no match to the southwest desert heat. Arizona's highways are littered with alligators in the summer months. Perhaps, the Maxxis tires will last longer in cooler country.

These tires were running smoothly, and there was no indication of problems. The tire shop had to deflate the tire to get it back in the wheel well, and it had a little lump in the tread when it was deflated. After they reinflated it, I asked them to spin it to see if the lump rounded out. (The trailer had been sitting for about a month, and I had only driven it a couple of miles to the tire shop, so I thought the tire might have had a flat spot in it that would normally have run out as it warmed up.) That's when the tech noticed the slipped belt.

I am now shopping for 16-inch wheels and various Michelin LT tires to fix this problem once and for all. Luckily this isn't too expensive, because we only need two wheels and tires, one of the few advantages of having a single axle.

If I didn't think we could switch to 16-inch wheels, I would probably buy Maxxis tires again. Even with this failure, it still seems to be the best tire available. I definitely wouldn't consider most of the other brands.

We got our Maxxis tires from Discount Tire. Discount ordered them one day, the tires were delivered the next afternoon, and the following day we had them installed. There must get them from a tire distributor in Phoenix or somewhere that can deliver them overnight.
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Old 01-21-2011, 08:25 AM   #648
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Originally Posted by Phoenix View Post
Wingeezer, a slipped belt looks like a lump in the tread or like a small section of tread squirmed a little and got stuck out of alignment with the rest of the tire..

Many thanks for that info. I did have a set of marathons fail on our last trailer when we were near Fort Stockton in Texas.

I felt vibration from the trailer and sopped to look and found that about 15" of tread (full width) missing from one wheel - luckily, no significant damage to the wheel well, and the tire didnt appear to have lost air. We managed to limp into Fort Stockton on the ruined tire and find a little one man tire shop that had tires to fit!

I changed all four because when i looked closely at the remaining three tires, I found two of them showed signs of the tread just starting to lift away from the carcass in one small spot.

Although these were Marathons, I can't really blame the tires but rather my own foolishness.

At that time, I wasn't really aware of the importance of replacing tires every five years or so. I had always thought that as long as they had tread and the sidewalls were not cracked, you were fine. These tires were probably 12 years old at least.

Hopefully we will get good performance with the Maxxis tires. If desert heat is a culprit leading to early failure that shouldn't be a big factor for us. The only time we are in the SW is during the winter. We only use the trailer for a couple of short trips in summer and usually in Canada or the NE States.

Thanks again for the info.

Brian
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Old 01-21-2011, 08:38 AM   #649
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Maxxis

Over the last several years, I have had 3 Maxxis E-rated slip belts. The clue is that a slipped tire looks like a bicycle tire. Instead of being flat across the tread, the tire becomes round with a bulging tread center.

In one case, I had already had a fatal puncture on another tire when I noticed the slipped belt. I kept my speed down and ran for several hundred miles across west Texas to where I could replace the tires. I watched the pressure and the temperature of the slipped belt tire. It ran a little hotter than the other tires, but not critically so.

The current Maxxis seem to be better made and my latest ones have held up well.
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Old 01-21-2011, 09:22 AM   #650
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ST Tires

Take a peek at this article sponsored by Good Sam.....a disturbing survey....perhaps not enough numbers to make a significant statistical difference, but.............


RV tire survey stirs failure cause questions
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Old 01-21-2011, 10:21 AM   #651
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Zig', good link, though the link in the link for the complete survey does not seem to exist any longer. I would have liked to have seen more detailed results.

On these threads about tires it has been said it appears that more tires fail than actually do because it's anecdotal, thus people with no problems, don't post. The survey shows a lot of RV tires are bad and trailer tires worst of all. It isn't some isolated people who post over and over again giving the impression of a problem—a survey of 17,000 is a fair sample. The link is worth reading.

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Old 01-21-2011, 11:16 AM   #652
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while interesting and more worthy of reading than many of the posts IN this thread...

i have read the original UNclipped survey and have a copy of the piece somewhere.

as i recall "problems" was very vaguely defined...

flats (from all causes) was included as was low pressure, wear, balance and basically everything else that may happen 2 a tire...

given that, the "i had problems" response rate should be much much higher, like 90-100%.

picking up a nail, 2-5 psi loss in a tire not used for seasons, tread wear, alignment/balance and so on...

are normal things and should be EXPECTED at some frequency by rv users...

'early years' wasn't based on tire age, but rather when the rv was purchased...

in other words reports from folks buying a used rv,

having problems in the first year or 2 or 10,000 miles of use were included.

and no accounting was made for valve stems that may be the cause of many issues and still are...

again the nature of the survey and how it was distributed encouraged folks with "negatives" to reply.

the 'maintenance' questions also made it appear that daily monitoring was widely used...

and simply "looking" at the tires was part of this.

there were a dozen other 'gotchas' in the survey/results consistent with it's value IN the costco flyer.
_________

the fact that costco sells tires and the monthly mag (while often good stuff) promotes the products they sell also matters.

i vaguely remember the same issue had a special sale on tire monitoring systems that costco was hawking.

or maybe this is some OTHER costco survey, i've not seen.
________

this is an rv forum.

and there are folks here who've reported the same tire issue dozens (100s) of times...

just as there are folks reporting one good result multiple times.

IF you wanna read about LT or performance tire failures or P metric tire issues...

the enthusiast forums for trucks and cars are replete with threads and stories on passenger and truck tire failures.

this is no defense of st tires or any other tire style,

but it is useful to understand that cyber space is a quagmire.


cheers
2air'
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Old 01-21-2011, 11:49 AM   #653
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but it is useful to understand that cyber space is a quagmire.

2air'
Sometimes I wonder when I read all the negative reports about trailer tires is how often we are the cause of the problem rather than the tire manufacturer.

I'm sure that I read the results of one RV survey where many RV's were checked for tire pressure and a large proportion - I forget the figures, but it was substantial - were found to have tires that were running very much under-inflated.

Almost every tire company website I have perused has claimed under inflation as a major cause of overheating and subsequent failure.

There's no doubt that for many years of my own RV'ing experience I did not give tire pressures much of a thought. I suppoe that "Doesn't look flat, must be good" was my guideline!

Now, due mainly to all I have learned through forums such as this one,
I check pressures with a gauge before every trip, use a TPMS on the road, and as well, do a walk around every time we stop the trailer to examine every tire, as well as the trailer itself, hitch, and TV generally.

No guarantee I won't still have problems I'm sure, but I'm sure it helps. I will also replace trailer tires irrespective of wear every five years from here on.

Brian.
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Old 01-21-2011, 02:10 PM   #654
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I read advice about switching to 16" LT tires for better tire safety and longevity. However, I have a 1963 Tradewind and I can barely get 15" ST radials in the wheel wells as it is. I have to let the air out of the tire and then install the wheel & tire on the hub before re-inflating. Once installed thereis plenty of clearance.

Could I even get a 16" LT wheel and tire to fit in the wheel well?
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Old 01-21-2011, 08:37 PM   #655
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That's a gorgeous TT, Mike. Have you tested your axle to make sure it's OK?

I'm no expert, especially with the '60s models, but either your model has more coverage of the wheel/tire assembly, or you need a new axle, from what I can see in your registry photos.
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Old 01-21-2011, 09:09 PM   #656
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Just felt I needed to add to this post.
During a recent rally this past summer, a friend pointed out that I had some tread separation on my 3 of my GYMs, and then after researching and reading all of the posts on this forum, I went to Discount Tire in San Antonio, and bought 4 new BF Goodrich Commercial 16" LTs with new wheels.
To date, I probably have 6000 miles on them, and my comfort level has increased exponentially. I have always checked tire inflation before and during trips, and was totally blown away when he pointed out that the condition of the tires were dangerous.
I can only assume that the RV companies put ST tires on because of liability issues. They can't put a Light Truck tire on a RV.
I run pressure and heat monitors on the tires, and they are performing great. Also, I have noticed that I do not have any more rivits popping or any other problems related to vibration.
Also, I should add that we are currently on a trip, and driving in New Mexico where the speed limit is 75 on the interstates. We have been cruising at that speed and sometimes above, and there are absolutely no worries.
ST tires are rated at only 65 mph.
To me this decision was a no brainer. Hope this helps.
Barry
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Old 01-21-2011, 09:36 PM   #657
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I only use bias ply tires. 10 ply. Never had any problems. I put them on all my airstreams. With all the Good year. When the double axle tires skid when turning the belts breakdown. Bias does not have belts to break!
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Old 01-21-2011, 11:39 PM   #658
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Quote:
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That's a gorgeous TT, Mike. Have you tested your axle to make sure it's OK?

I'm no expert, especially with the '60s models, but either your model has more coverage of the wheel/tire assembly, or you need a new axle, from what I can see in your registry photos.
Yes,my Tradewind has a brand new Henschen axle installed by Airstream in Jackson Center. This is the same height and wheel coverage as the day she rolled out of the factory brand new. It is the original 22 degree starting angle rather than the 35 degree angle most people have modified their Airstreams to.

It is a misconception that this era Airstream showed more tire sidewall when new. I have hundreds of pictures taken in the 1950's & 60's and this is the proper height for this vintage Airstream.
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